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Alzheimer's - High Estrogen Levels Linked To Dementia – Netherlands Study of Older Hawaiian Men – No Association Found with Testosterone

Alzheimer's - High Estrogen Levels Linked To Dementia – Netherlands Study of Older Hawaiian Men – No Association Found with Testosterone

Estrogen Targets

Researchers from the Netherlands have found a link between high estrogen levels and dementia in older men.  Their data came from a group of 2974 Japanese-American men aged 70 to 91 who participated in the Honolulu-Asia Aging Study.  The baseline fasting blood samples were drawn between 1991 and 1993, at which time levels of testosterone and estradiol, the major estrogen in humans were measured.

None of the participants had signs of dementia at the beginning of the study.  The researchers measured cognitive decline or dementia in all the participants in 1994-1996 and 1997-1999 using the Cognitive Abilities Screening Instrument (CASI).  They collected physical, demographic and medical information at each exam.  Complete Article


Men and Boys With Autism have Fewer Neurons Than Counterparts without Autism - Brain Structure Not the Same in Autistic People

Men and Boys With Autism have Fewer Neurons Than Counterparts without Autism - Brain Structure Not the Same in Autistic People

Brain

Researchers say that they have discovered that males with autism have fewer neurons in the amygdala than their counterparts without the condition.  David Amaral says “"This is the first quantitative evidence of an abnormal number of neurons in the autistic amygdala and the first study to use modern unbiased sampling techniques for autism research."  Amaral is the research director of the UC Davis M.I.N.D. Institute.

Amaral and graduate student Cynthia Mills Schumann counted and measured representative samples of neurons in the amygdala of nine postmortem brains of autistic males.  They compared this to the brains of 10 postmortem males who did not have autism.  The subjects ranged from 10 to 44 years of age at the time of death.  Complete Article


Shocking, but potentially promising way to treat Alzheimer's - Lupron

Shocking, but potentially promising way to treat Alzheimer's - Lupron

Lupron

For the last several years, the main drug used to treat Alzheimer's disease has been Aricept, but its benefit isn't long-lasting, spanning maybe 18 months to 2 years. Yet surprisingly, a randomized study out just this week has added another clue to the mystery of this tragic disease - a drug called leuprolide (brand name Lupron) commonly used to treat prostate cancer, breast cancer, and endometriosis was found, after 12-48 weeks, to significantly slow the progression of Alzheimer's.

Lupron's mechanism of action is that it blocks LH (luteinizing hormone), which prompts the pituitary gland to produce gonadotropins, hormones that stimulate the ovaries and testes to produce the high levels of estrogen and testosterone necessary for reproduction. Complete Article


Cure for Alzheimer's Disease Found In Once A Day Pill According to Australian Researchers - Drug Lowers Amyloid in Body in 24 Hours

Cure for Alzheimer's Disease Found In Once A Day Pill According to Australian Researchers - Drug Lowers Amyloid in Body in 24 Hours

A Cure?

Australian scientists say they have found a cure for Alzheimer’s disease and it is as simple as a once-a-day pill.  Trials of the drug, PBT2, start next month according to The Australian news agency.  The pill was developed by the Mental Health Research Institute of Victoria in partnership with Prana Biotechnology in Melbourne.

Professor George Fink said “It is a major breakthrough and very much a Melbourne discovery.''  Fink is the director of the Mental Health Research Institute.  He added “Though much depends on the next phase of human clinical trials ... early results indicate this drug offers hope to people with Alzheimer's disease.''  Complete Article


Autism – Brain of Autistic Males have Less Neurons for Emotions

Autism – Brain of Autistic Males have Less Neurons for Emotions

Autism

A study has linked the autistic brains in males as having reduced amounts of neurons in the region that is related to emotional and socializing skills. This study was first reported in the July 19th issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.

The abnormality is found in the amygdala and especially in the lateral nucleus region of the brain.  This region of the brain is the major center for processing emotions and is also connected to areas of the brain that is used for higher cognitive functions. 

Complete Article


Flurizan Shows Benefits for Treating Alzheimer's Disease - Slows Onset of Confusion Depression and Aggression Over 24 Month Period

Flurizan Shows Benefits for Treating Alzheimer's Disease - Slows Onset of Confusion Depression and Aggression Over 24 Month Period

Flurizan Benefits

Researchers have demonstrated Flurizan can help patients with Alzheimer’s disease.  Flurizan, made by Myriad Genetics, when given in the larger doses (800 milligram twice a day) can slow the cognitive decline caused by Alzheimer ’s disease. 

In this study, the groups taking the higher doses demonstrated a substantial benefit over other dose groups in the study and that this benefit continued over 24 months.  The testing included memory loss, cognition and global function.

This is considered a small mid-state trial, but the results are promising.  Adrian Hobden, Ph.D., President of Myriad Pharmaceuticals, Inc. said "The 24 month data completes the Phase 2 follow-on trial with mounting evidence of efficacy against mild Alzheimer's disease that consistently increased over the course of the study.  The results are consistent with a mode of action for Flurizan that is modifying the course of the underlying disease process."  Complete Article


Antibodies Could be Used to Treat Alzheimer's Disease - IVIG Blood Antibody Treatment Provides Lasting Benefits

Antibodies Could be Used to Treat Alzheimer's Disease - IVIG Blood Antibody Treatment Provides Lasting Benefits

New Hope

New York researchers say that a mixture of purified human antibodies, called intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg), provides lasting benefits to patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD).  They say this is the first study that shows that IVIg stabilizes or improves cognitive function in Alzheimer patients when administered over a period of a year or more.

The compound bonds to beta amyloid (AB), which many researchers believe is a central component causing plaque buildup in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. They believe that the IVIg compound helps clear the AB from the brain and even helps block AB’s toxic effects.  Complete Article


Alzheimer’s Treatment - Diabetes Drug may help treat Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s Treatment - Diabetes Drug may help treat Alzheimer’s disease

Health

Research from the University of Virginia Health System and Case Western Reserve University found that a drug called piogliatozone HCI, which is used to treat type 2 Diabetes may also help people suffering with Alzheimer’s disease.  Alzheimer’s disease damages the brain’s ability to think and remember well and affects approximately 4.5 million people in the United States.

"We believe that the drug may reduce the body's inflammatory reaction to one of the toxic components that builds up in Alzheimer's, called amyloid plaque,” said Dr. David Geldmacher, an associate professor of neurology at UVa.  The study was first reported at the world's largest Alzheimer's conference, ICAD 2006, in Madrid, Spain on July 16th, 2006.  There is a growing idea of a relationship between diabetes and Alzheimer’s that have made ICAD organizers highlight this study.  Complete Article


Brain Injury May Be Reversed With Common Sleeping Pill - Ambien Has Helped Some Patients Regain Use of Some Functions - Reverse Damage

Brain Injury May Be Reversed With Common Sleeping Pill - Ambien Has Helped Some Patients Regain Use of Some Functions - Reverse Damage

Ambien

Remarkable research shows that the common sleeping pill Ambien may help patients with brain damage recover the use of some of their brain.  Although the awakening side effect is rare, doctors say that some patients may benefit.

ABC News reporter, Mike Von Fremd, interviewed a doctor that has been studying the prescription sleeping pills.  Dr. Ralf Clauss speculates that while brain injury may cause some parts of the brain to remain dormant, sometimes the drug may temporarily reverse this change.

The news segment involved a young man, George Melendez, who had a passion for baseball, but was involved in a traffic accident leaving his brain damaged.  The injury was serious enough that he was unable to talk or take care of himself.  Complete Article


Magic Mushrooms Cause Positive Changes For Months - Could Be Used To Treat Depression By Changing Mood and Anxiety

Magic Mushrooms Cause Positive Changes For Months - Could Be Used To Treat Depression By Changing Mood and Anxiety

Mushrooms

Amazing new research from the Johns Hopkins Medical Institute believe that the resulting experience form ingesting the active agent in “sacred Mushrooms” apparently prompts “positive changes in behavior and attitude that lasts several months, at least.”  The researchers are still not sure where in the brain the agent, psilocybin works.

They do know that psilocybin mimics the effect of serotonin on brain receptors, as do some other hallucinogens.  The research is cited as “landmark” in a commentary by former National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) director, Charles Schuster.  Complete Article


Parkinson's Disease and Apathy Are Linked - Frontal Cortex Center for Both Disorders - More People Diagnosed Before the Age of 50

Parkinson's Disease and Apathy Are Linked - Frontal Cortex Center for Both Disorders - More People Diagnosed Before the Age of 50

Apathy

More people are being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease before the age of 50.  Also, researchers in Florida have found that Parkinson’s disease patients can be apathetic without being depressed.  They believe apathy could be the core feature of the disease. This is a mental state characterized by a loss of motivation, loss of interest and loss of effortful behavior. 

Depression is different from apathy in that people with depression have a negative mood.  Although people with apathy and depression have similar symptoms, the person with apathy has a “neutral” mood. 


Possible Treatment for Down's Syndrome Retardation may Involve Interference with Gene - Same Gene might Cause Alzheimer's

Possible Treatment for Down's Syndrome Retardation may Involve Interference with Gene - Same Gene might Cause Alzheimer's

Health

Stanford University researchers believe they may be able to “reverse the cognitive decline” that frequently affects those with Down’s syndrome in middle age.  "We may now have the opportunity to make a big difference in people's lives," according to neurologist William Mobley, MD, PhD. "If we can decrease the expression of this gene we may be able to provide something more than supportive care to people with Down syndrome."

Mobley and his team believe they have found the gene that when overexpressed, causes neurons responsible for attention and memory to shrivel and stop functioning normally.  It may be possible to “interfere” with the gene.

Down’s syndrome is the leading cause of mental retardation in the United States.  There are more than 300,000 people nationwide have Down syndrome, which is caused by an extra copy of chromosome 21, giving them a total of three.  Up until now, there has been little molecular or Neurological research done on the subject.


Happiness is a Concept – Rich and Wealthy are not always Happier – High Income Earners Work More and Spend Less time on Fun

Happiness is a Concept – Rich and Wealthy are not always Happier

US Bureau of Labor Statistics Website

We assume that money can fix everything and even make us happy, however a study from Princeton University has shown that increasing your income is an exaggerated illusion.

A survey conducted by researchers from Princeton University showed us that we tend to over rate the importance of income creating a state of well-being.  While Americans strive to prioritize income as a key to happiness the reality is that high income earners are not spending their free time in enjoyable ways.


How to Reduce Stress - Helps in Weight Loss Efforts and Keep you Younger

How to Reduce Stress - Helps in Weight Loss Efforts and Keep you Younger

Yoga Mind Body & Spirit Book

On 20/20 last Friday, one topic that was discussed was stress and how it causes us to age and gain weight.  It was assumed that sun was the only cause of wrinkles, but the truth is, stress also contributes to wrinkles.  There is also evidence the increased stress levels help to raise cortisol levels that trigger the storage of body fat.

One big contributor to stress is called NUT, which stands for Nagging, Unfinished, Tasks.  So if your desk is piled high, and you are constantly behind this is causing stress that is aging you and making you fat.  How can you organize your schedule to manage your chores and not feel overwhelmed?  How to Reduce Stress - Helps in Weight Loss Efforts and Keep you Younger


New Test to Identify Alzheimer’s Disease – Diagnosis and Determine Effectiveness of Drugs Used to Treat Condition Quickly

New Test to Identify Alzheimer’s Disease – Diagnosis and Determine Effectiveness of Drugs Used to Treat Condition Quickly

Brain Scans

Scientists are closer to determining whether Alzheimer’s patients have high levels of a brain protein because they make too much of it or because they can't clear it from their brains quickly enough. Researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have developed the first safe and sensitive way to monitor the production and clearance rates of amyloid beta peptide (Abeta) in the human central nervous system.

High levels of the beta peptide Abeta in the brain is a hallmark for Alzheimer's disease and is believed to be a pivotal cause of the condition.  Previously researchers had trouble determining whether the body was producing too much of the peptide or was having trouble removing it from the system.  New Test to Identify Alzheimer’s Disease – Diagnosis and Determine Effectiveness of Drugs Used to Treat Condition Quickly


Brain Exercises Can Help Make Your Mind Younger - ABC News Program 20/20 Interview Dr. Oz and Roisen - Nintendo Real Brain Age Game

Brain Exercises Can Help Make Your Mind Younger - ABC News Program 20/20 Interview Dr. Oz and Roisen - Nintendo Real Brain Age Game

Nintendo Game

Brain age has become a very popular topic of discussion now days, especially with the popularity of the Nintendo Brain Age Game.  The company says you can train your mind to function better (or younger) in just minutes a day. 

The ABC News program 20/20 recently asked the question: “A lot of people believe that we use only 10 percent of our brain. Is that true?”  According to Dr. Mehmet Oz, co author of "You: The Owner's Manual", "It's not true. In fact, you'd be in big trouble if you only used 10 percent. The reality is that we use all of our brain, but we don't use it all the time."  Brain Exercises Can Help Make Your Mind Younger - ABC News Program 20/20 Interview Dr. Oz and Roisen - Nintendo Real Brain Age Game


Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Gene Discovered - PLA2G6 Leads to Neuroaxonal Dystrophies Iron Build-up in Brain

Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Gene Discovered - PLA2G6 Leads to Neuroaxonal Dystrophies Iron Build-up in Brain

Susan Hayflick

Oregon scientists believe they have found the gene that can trigger several genetic disorders called neuroaxonal dystrophies, which can lead to Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.  The disorder is a rare progressive childhood conditions that causes an abnormal buildup of iron in the brain.

According to Susan J. Hayflick MD, “If you're a family with a kid with one of these diseases, the impact is clear, specific and personal."  Susan is a professor of molecular and medical genetics, pediatrics and neurology in the OHSU School of Medicine.

There are some very serious disorders caused by the build-up of iron in the basal ganglia, a cluster of gray-matter tissue structures deep in the brain that control motor function.  The iron accumulates, causing swelling of the branch-like axons that transmit electrical impulses from the nerve cell body to its terminal.  This interrupts the signal sent to other nerve cells nearby.  Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Gene Discovered - PLA2G6 Leads to Neuroaxonal Dystrophies Iron Build-up in Brain


DNA Vaccine Developed For Alzheimer's Disease - Japanese Researchers Say Genetic Based Vaccine Could Reverse Plaque Buildup in Brain

DNA Vaccine Developed For Alzheimer's Disease - Japanese Researchers Say Genetic Based Vaccine Could Reverse Plaque Buildup in Brain

Health

Japanese researchers say that they have promising new results with mice studies that may benefit Alzheimer’s disease patients.  They have been able to cut levels of key amyloid proteins thought to cause the disease, by up to 50% in some parts of the brain by using a DNA vaccine.

The over-production of amyloid proteins are thought to trigger symptoms of Alzheimer's by forming clumps that litter the brain, according to the BBC.  Previous research has shown that it is possible to stimulate the immune system of mice to attack these plaques, if they are immunized with amyloid protein.  But when this was done in humans the immune response was so great that the brain began to swell. The clinical trial for a vaccine had to be called off in 2003 after 18 of the 298 patients developed swelling in their brains.  DNA Vaccine Developed For Alzheimer's Disease - Japanese Researchers Say Genetic Based Vaccine Could Reverse Plaque Buildup in Brain


Anger Management - Treatments Recommended For Road Rage – Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED) is Identified and is Widespread

Anger Management - Treatments Recommended For Road Rage – Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED) is Identified and is Widespread

Anger Management

Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED), a disease characterized by recurring episodes of anger and potentially violent outbursts, is much more common than thought.  According to the researchers, the disorder can be diagnosed.  If a person has had three major episodes of impulsive aggressiveness at any time in his life which is significantly more explosive than what most normal people would have had in the same situation, they have the disorder. 

The outbursts are sudden and can include damage to property or physical harm.  The disorder could affect as many as 7.3 percent of adults.  That works out to 16 million Americans.  Harvard professor of health care, Ronald Kessler, PhD says that each year IED affects nearly 4 percent of Americans, or 8.6 million adults.

Interestingly, people feel a sense of relief during the uncontrollable outburst, but then feel remorseful about their actions.  There may be effective treatments for this condition.  Anger Management - Treatments Recommended For Road Rage – Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED) is Identified and is Widespread


Learning Disabled and Handicapped Individuals – How You can help with this and other Community Problems

Learning Disabled and Handicapped Individuals – How You can help with this and other Community Problems

Smart But Stuck
book by
Myrna Orenstein

“I am only one. But still, I am one. I cannot do every thing, but still I can do something, and because I cannot do every thing, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.”  “Edward Everetthale"

The major community problem for which I have contributed my efforts is the problem of “THE RIGHTS OF SPECIAL PEOPLE”. I have worked as a teaching/counseling/social with the “Special People” of our “Community” since 7 years. Since from my childhood, I had an intention to social work for the special people, because I had a natural bond of attachment with them. To accomplish my wish, I chose “SPECIAL PEOPLE COMMITTEE” of our community so that I could bring change in their lives.  Learning Disabled and Handicapped Individuals – How You can help with this and other Community Problems


Patients with Depression Have Slow Heart Rate Recover - Depressed Cardiac Rehabilitation Participants May Have Higher Death Rate - Attack

Patients with Depression Have Slow Heart Rate Recover - Depressed Cardiac Rehabilitation Participants May Have Higher Death Rate - Attack

Dr. Joel Hughes

Researchers have discovered that there is a link between depression and the length of time it takes for a patient to return to a normal heart rate during cardiac rehabilitation.  The research, published in the American Heart Journal, indicates that heart rate recovery after exercise was slower among patients with symptoms of depression. 

The heart rate recovery after a treadmill stress test is a good indication of how the autonomic nervous system is functioning, according to a report by Reuters Health. Dr. Joel W. Hughes, co-author of the study, and colleagues from Kent State University of Ohio said that patients who take longer to recover their normal heart rate also have an increased risk of mortality.

The report says that the autonomic nervous system helps the body to adapt to changes in the environment, adjusting or modifying body functions in response to stress.  The autonomic system also regulates blood pressure, heart rate, airflow to the lungs, the digestive process, insulin secretion, urinary function and sexual response.  Patients with Depression Have Slow Heart Rate Recover - Depressed Cardiac Rehabilitation Participants May Have Higher Death Rate - Attack


Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline Help Send Kids To Prison

Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline Help Send Kids To Prison

Prison Bars

In 2003, the pharmaceutical industry passed out $16.4 billion worth of free drug samples to doctors. These so-called free samples are literally killing people. Two young lads who were lucky enough to get free samples of Zoloft are now sitting in prison.

After visits to their family doctors, Christopher Pittman and Zachary Schmidkunz were both sent home with a bag of Zoloft samples with no warnings about the drug's side effects. They both went on to commit murder, were sent to prison, and are now waiting for hearings on their appeals. 

These lethal selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants (SSRIs) are being passed out to kids like candy. Dr Thomas Moore, MD, with the Drug Safety Research group, conducted a study on the use of antidepressant drugs with children that showed that in the 4-period of 1998 to 2001, the use of SSRIs with children doubled and in 90% of the cases the drugs were prescribed off-label to kids for uses not approved by the FDA.  Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline Help Send Kids To Prison


Poor Physical Function First Signs of Dementia - Alzheimer's Disease Early Warnings May Include Loss of Balance Limp and Weak Hand Grip

Poor Physical Function First Signs of Dementia - Alzheimer's Disease Early Warnings May Include Loss of Balance Limp and Weak Hand Grip

Health

Researchers at the University of Washington, Seattle, believe that poor physical performance may be early signs of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.  It has been shown that both physical performance and cognitive (thinking, learning and memory) ability tend to decline with age, but few studies have examined how physical performance is linked to the development of dementia or the intermediate stage known as cognitive impairment.

This study involved 2,288 participants, age 65 and older, who did not have dementia at the beginning of the study. Between 1994 and 1996, participants underwent initial testing to determine their cognitive abilities, which were scored on a scale from zero to 100.  Along with this testing, they performed four tests of physical function.  These tests included standing from a seated position five times, a standing balance assessment, a timed 10 foot walk, and a measured grip strength test performed on their dominant hand.  Poor Physical Function First Signs of Dementia - Alzheimer's Disease Early Warnings May Include Loss of Balance Limp and Weak Hand Grip


Parkinson's Disease Drug Azilect Approved By FDA - Treatment For Early Stage and Late State with Levodopa -  Side Effects

Parkinson's Disease Drug Azilect Approved By FDA - Treatment For Early Stage and Late State with Levodopa -  Side Effects

Health

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new drug by Israeli drug maker Teva Pharmaceutical Industries in Tel Aviv for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.  The molecular identity is called Azilect (rasagiline) and is a monoamine oxidase type--B (MAO-B) inhibitor that blocks the breakdown of dopamine.  Dopamine is a chemical that sends information to the parts of the brain that control movement and coordination.

The drug has been approved for both early and late stages of the disease. Azilect was approved for use as an initial single drug therapy in early Parkinson's disease, and as an addition to levodopa for advanced stages.  Levodopa has been a standard treatment for Parkinson’s disease.  Parkinson's Disease Drug Azilect Approved By FDA - Treatment For Early Stage and Late State with Levodopa -  Side Effects


Kids Dying From Off-Label Use Of Antipsychotics

Kids Dying From Off-Label Use Of Antipsychotics

Health

A recent USA Today sponsored review of the FDA database from 2000 to 2004 found at least 45 deaths in children under 18 with atypical antipsychotics listed as the "primary suspect," and 1,328 reports of other serious side effects, some life-threatening.

The FDA's adverse event reporting system is known to capture only between 1% to 10% of side effects and deaths, which means the true numbers are actually much higher.

Among the 45 deaths, discussed in the May 2, 2006, USA article, at least six were related to diabetes, and other causes ranged from heart and pulmonary problems to choking, liver failure and suicide.  Kids Dying From Off-Label Use Of Antipsychotics


HGH – Human Growth Hormone and Endorphins increase when you laugh – Improved autoimmune response and reduced Cortisol levels

HGH – Human Growth Hormone and Endorphins increase when you laugh – Improved autoimmune response and reduced Cortisol levels

Laughter

Laughing is good for you, it increases endorphins by 27 percent and HGH by 87 percent said a study from Loma Linda University.  Lee S. Berk, who is from the Department of Health Promotion and Education, School of Public Health and Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Loma Linda University, first presented the results of this study of laughter at the American Physiological Society session at Experimental Biology 2006.

The researchers studied the effects of how a person’s neuroendocrine and hormone levels changed even when they anticipated watching their favorite funny movie.  They had two groups; one group was told that they were going to watch the funny movie, and the control group was not informed.  Blood samples were taken just before the participants watched the movie.  The results reinforced that your thoughts can make the difference in your health.  HGH – Human Growth Hormone and Endorphins increase when you laugh – Improved autoimmune response and reduced Cortisol levels


Alzheimer's Disease Treatment May Involve Inhibiting Mitochondria Toxins - Brain Scans May Help Predict the Degenerative Disease

Alzheimer's Disease Treatment May Involve Inhibiting Mitochondria Toxins - Brain Scans May Help Predict the Degenerative Disease

Mitochondria

Scientists have identified the key gene locations in brain cells where significant damage occurs in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.  Researchers at the Oregon Health & Science University's Neurological Sciences Institute (NSI) believe that this could lead to a possible target for future therapies. 

The results, published in the May 1st issue of the journal Human Molecular Genetics, identify mitochondria structures inside cells as being heavily involved in the degenerative disease.  The researchers believe that toxins created by the mitochondria contribute to the disease progression.

Dr. P. Hemachandra Reddy said “This latest research more clearly demonstrates how structures, called mitochondria, in brain cells are a key part of the disease process in Alzheimer's. In fact, mitochondria appear to be a site where significant disease progression takes place."  Alzheimer's Disease Treatment May Involve Inhibiting Mitochondria Toxins - Brain Scans May Help Predict the Degenerative Disease


New Parkinson's Disease Research - Compare Genetic Cases with Environmental - Symptoms and Treatments With Drugs

New Parkinson's Disease Research - Compare Genetic Cases with Environmental - Symptoms and Treatments With Drugs

Health

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic compared patients with Parkinson’s disease which stems from genetic causes with patients who have no known cause.  These cases that have no known genetic cause make up 98% of all Parkinson’s cases.  They label these cases “sporadic”.  Parkinson’s disease affects approximately 1 million Americans causing tremors, stiffness, slowness of movement and instability. 

They found that the disease affects men twice as often as women.  The researchers speculate that this may be because women have a “protective effect” or mechanism.  For example, the hormone estrogen may act to protect women.     

It has been thought that Parkinson’s may be caused by environmental exposure to pesticides or chemicals, but researchers have also found six genetic mutations responsible for causing Parkinson's disease in about 2 percent of all cases.  New Parkinson's Disease Research - Compare Genetic Cases with Environmental - Symptoms and Treatments With Drugs 


Autism - Worst Welfare Disaster In History

Autism - Worst Welfare Disaster In History

Health

Scientist and medical experts say that unless the government forces the pharmaceutical industry to pay for the damage caused by mercury-laced vaccines, in the not too distant future, Americans will experience the worst welfare disaster in the history of this country.

No doubt with that in mind, eight members of Congress are calling for a new investigation into the link between the autism epidemic and the mercury-based preservative, thimerosal, that children received in vaccines during the 1990s, and that some children received as late as 2003.

After six years of hearings, and testimony from medical experts, scientists, special education teachers, school nurses, and parents of autistic children, several lawmakers say they are convinced that a review of the vaccine database will show a causal link between autism and thimerosal.  Autism - Worst Welfare Disaster In History


Alzheimer’s disease – Mediterranean Diet reduces risk of getting Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s disease – Mediterranean Diet reduces risk of getting Alzheimer’s

Fruits and Vegetables

A study of Americans that ate a Mediterranean diet had a reduced risk for getting Alzheimer’s disease in their old age.  The report was first published in the April issue of the Annals of Neurology.

According to Oldway’s website they depict the Mediterranean diet along with other food pyramids based on cultures.  A Mediterranean diet includes lots of vegetables and fruits, whole grains, rice, pasta, beans, legumes and nuts are eaten on a daily basis.  Olive oil and other plant oils along with cheese and yogurt are all part of a daily eating plan.  Fish, poultry, eggs, and sweets are on a weekly basis, with red meat being eaten on a monthly basis.  Alzheimer’s disease – Mediterranean Diet reduces risk of getting Alzheimer’s


Stress Hormones Cause Depression - New Drugs May Target Cortisol to Prevent Chronic Anxious Behavior and Mood Disorders

Stress Hormones Cause Depression - New Drugs May Target Cortisol to Prevent Chronic Anxious Behavior and Mood Disorders

Anxiety and Stress

Researchers believe that long term exposure to stress causes depression. Many medical professionals have suspected this, but lacked the evidence. Neuroscientists at Harvard Medical School, and its affiliate Mclean Hospital, have shown that long-term exposure to a stress hormone in mice directly resulted in the anxiety that often comes with depression.

Researchers already knew that people with depression had high levels of the human stress hormone, cortisol, but were not sure if it was a cause or effect.  They now believe that long-term exposure to cortisol actually contributes to the symptoms of depression.

Scientists exposed mice to both short term and long-term durations of the rodent stress hormone, corticosterone.  According to Paul Ardayfio, PhD candidate, and Kwang-Soo Kim, PhD, chronic stress, such as caring for a spouse with dementia, rather than acute stress, has been associated with depression.  Stress Hormones Cause Depression - New Drugs May Target Cortisol to Prevent Chronic Anxious Behavior and Mood Disorders

Alzheimer’s disease – Risk Increases in Overweight and Obese People in their 40’s

Alzheimer’s disease – Risk Increases in Overweight and Obese People in their 40’s

Lafayette Skinfold Caliper

Researchers found that people that are either overweight or obese in their 40’s have a greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease later in life.  The research was first presented at the American Academy of Neurology 58th Annual Meeting in San Diego, California that was held the beginning of this month.

This large scale study followed 9,000 people for a period of 30 years.  The study measured skin fold thickness of the back of the upper arm and also under the shoulder on the back.

The people that had the higher skinfold measurements in their 40’s had a higher chance for developing Alzheimer’s disease compared to those that had the smallest measurements.  The people that had the highest skinfold measurement of the back were three times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s compared to those who had the smallest measurement of the back.  The people that had the largest skinfold measurement of the arm were 2 ½ times more likely to have Alzheimer’s disease later on compared to those that had the smallest arm skin fold measurement.  Alzheimer’s disease – Risk Increases in Overweight and Obese People in their 40’s


Hormone Replacement Therapy May Not Increase Breast Cancer Risk - Estrogen Pills (HRT) can Cause Strokes Blood Clots and Dementia

Hormone Replacement Therapy May Not Increase Breast Cancer Risk - Estrogen Pills (HRT) can Cause Strokes Blood Clots and Dementia

Estrogen

The latest data from Women's Health Initiative (WHI) shows that estrogen alone used for 7 years or less in women with hysterectomy does not increase the risk (or perhaps the detection) of breast cancer in general. A non-significant trend towards fewer cases was noted. Obviously if this were the only finding it would be good news but it's lot more confusing than that. Nevertheless, Wyeth, the maker of Premarin, and a few of its designated, well paid mouthpieces are at it again, saying estrogen is protective.

They've got Hugh Taylor from Yale and Wolf Utian of the North American Menopause Society (a veteran HRT proponent) touting these results with great enthusiasm. Highly irresponsible, for several reasons!! - The "reduced risk" was not significant and the cancers of the women on estrogen were larger and involved lymph nodes. Plus the women on estrogen required additional testing or biopsies, and there appeared to be an INCREASED RISK of breast cancer for those women with risk factors.  Hormone Replacement Therapy May Not Increase Breast Cancer Risk - Estrogen Pills (HRT) can Cause Strokes Blood Clots and Dementia


Carotid Artery Stent Procedure Makes You Smarter - Minimal Invasive Surgery Improves Memory and Mental Skills and Reduce Stroke Risk

Carotid Artery Stent Procedure Makes You Smarter - Minimal Invasive Surgery Improves Memory and Mental Skills and Reduce Stroke Risk

Stent

A stenting procedure in patients to reduce the risk of stroke has had the un-expected side-effect of making the patient smarter.  Doctors from Toronto Canada found that after performing a minimally invasive neck procedure, their patients showed gains in memory and mental skills. 

According to an ABC News report, the procedure, called carotid stenting (or carotid endarterectomy), is an alternative to painful neck surgery.  Carotid stenting relies on tiny devices maneuvered through the circulatory system to the carotid arteries in the neck.  The doctors then inflate a balloon to push the plaque into the vessel wall and then implant a metal-mesh scaffold, or stent, to keep the clogged artery open.  

Evidently the increased blood flow improved brain function in some of their patients. According to Dr. Rodney Raabe, an interventional radiologist and who was the study's lead researcher, “People who have high-grade narrowing of the arteries will benefit best.  Particularly patients who have started to have memory problems should go to doctors to get an ultrasound to see if they have a blockage."  Carotid Artery Stent Procedure Makes You Smarter - Minimal Invasive Surgery Improves Memory and Mental Skills and Reduce Stroke Risk


Changing Treatments For Depression May Improve Outcomes - If First Medicine Does Not Work Try or Add Another Medication - Study Says

Changing Treatments For Depression May Improve Outcomes - If First Medicine Does Not Work Try or Add Another Medication - Study Says

Dr. Rush

Successfully treating depression may require trying different drugs, according to research from the UT (University of Texas) Southwestern Medical Center.  They found that one in three to four people who do not achieve a full remission of symptoms from an initial antidepressant became symptom-free after changing to or adding a second antidepressant.

Dr. A. John Rush said “The message to the patient is: 'Hang in there. If the first treatment does not relieve your symptoms, consider changing or adding another medication. Follow instructions from your doctor, and don't give up.”  Rush is the vice chairman of clinical sciences and professor of psychiatry at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

The $35 million six year study involved nearly 3,000 patients. The researchers wanted to assess the effectiveness of various treatments for depression in "real-world" settings for people who also have other medical and psychiatric conditions.  The study, designated STAR*D (Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression), was broken down into four phases.  Changing Treatments For Depression May Improve Outcomes - If First Medicine Does Not Work Try or Add Another Medication - Study Says 


Cells Found in Adult Males Have Same Properties As Embryonic Stem Cells -  Sperm Producing Cells From Testicles Work The Same -Researchers From Germany Say

Cells Found in Adult Males Have Same Properties As Embryonic Stem Cells -  Sperm Producing Cells From Testicles Work The Same -Researchers From Germany Say

Embryonic Stem Cells
From Mice

Researchers in Germany believe they have isolated stem cells from the testicles of adult mice that appear similar to embryonic stem (ES) cells.  The researchers hope that they can isolate similar cells in male adults that can be used in place of embryonic stem cells.  If these stem cells can be used in place of human embryonic stem cells, it would remove a stumbling block for research into such diseases as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. 

Stem cells are the body’s building blocks, and embryonic stem cells are the most useful because they have the ability to become any type of cell within the human body.  The researchers believe they could provide an alternative source of stem cells for growing genetically matched cells.  This would likely be more acceptable than using embryos. 

Gerd Hasenfuss and colleagues from the Georg August University of Göttingen are responsible for this research.  They said “This would avoid the technical and ethical difficulties associated with generating cells from human embryos."  Cells Found in Adult Males Have Same Properties As Embryonic Stem Cells -  Sperm Producing Cells From Testicles Work The Same -Researchers From Germany Say


Depression May Be Caused By Environmental Factors in Childhood – Depressed Mothers May Increase Risk of Health Problems In their Children

Depression May Be Caused By Environmental Factors in Childhood – Depressed Mothers May Increase Risk of Health Problems In their Children

Mother Child Link

Reducing a mother’s depression within the first three months of treatment lessens the chance of her children having psychiatric disorders, according to a new study.  Mothers may have more to do with their children’s depression than we previously thought.  The child’s disorders may include mood or disruptive behavior disorders, within that same time period.

According to new research presented at the JAMA media briefing on women's health in New York, parental depression is among the most consistent risk factors for childhood anxiety and disruptive behavior disorders.  There is a 2 to 3 fold increased risk in offspring of depressed parents compared with control subjects. 

This appears to be the first documented study that shows a relation between remission of a mother's depression and her child's clinical state. These findings are intriguing because they suggest that an environmental influence (i.e., the impact of maternal depression remission) had a measurable impact on the child's psychopathology.  Depression May Be Caused By Environmental Factors in Childhood – Depressed Mothers May Increase Risk of Health Problems In their Children


Addiction Treatment Centers Using Experiential Therapies

Addiction Treatment Centers Using Experiential Therapies

Cirque Lodge, Sundance Utah

Life is experience.  Substance dependence overtakes a person’s ability to make her own decisions to experience life, and life is no longer actively participated in.  Therefore, in overcoming addiction, it is vital to learn to re-experience life.  This lesson helps a treatment center resident reintegrate into the world after therapy is through. 

Experiential therapy is this bridge to leaving a life of substance dependency and commencing a life of health, both physical and mental.  Experiential therapy is a necessary component in the steps towards a complete therapy.  Addiction Treatment Centers Using Experiential Therapies

 


Anti-Psychotic Drugs taken by Children have drastically Increased – Are all these kids Bipolar and Schizophrenic?

Anti-Psychotic Drugs taken by Children have drastically Increased – Are all these kids Bipolar and Schizophrenic?

The A.D.D. Book

A study reported that there was a huge increase in the amount of children taking anti-psychotic prescription drugs in recent years.  These drugs are often used to treat attention deficit disorder (ADD) as well as other behavior problems.  The problem is that the psychotic drugs have not been proven to work for a many of these children taking the drugs.  The study was first reported in the March-April edition of the journal Ambulatory Pediatrics.

Dr. William Cooper, a pediatrician with the Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital and lead author of the study made a statement of concern, "because it looks like these medications are being used for large numbers of children in a setting where we don't know if they work."  Anti-Psychotic Drugs taken by Children have drastically Increased – Are all these kids Bipolar and Schizophrenic?


Early Detection of Alzheimer's Disease May Involve Protein - A-beta-Star May Put Neurons to Sleep Not Kill Them - Treatment May Follow

Early Detection of Alzheimer's Disease May Involve Protein - A-beta-Star May Put Neurons to Sleep Not Kill Them - Treatment May Follow

Karen Ashe

Researchers at the University of Minnesota say they have identified a possible future target for therapies to defeat Alzheimer’s disease (AD) before it causes irreversible damage.  The identifying characteristic for AD is numerous insoluble clumps, or plaques, composed of a specific protein called amyloid-beta (A beta). 

Researchers had thought that these plaques caused AD, but they were mistaken.  According to Karen Ashe of the University of Minnesota, “About four years ago, we realized there was no correlation between the amount of plaque and the amount of memory dysfunction.”  This caused Ashe, a professor of neurology and neuroscience and director of the University's Center for Memory Research and Care, to start focusing on A-beta specifically.  Early Detection of Alzheimer's Disease May Involve Protein - A-beta-Star May Put Neurons to Sleep Not Kill Them - Treatment May Follow


Multiple Sclerosis Drug Combined with Lipitor May Stop or Reverse Disease - Dosages Cut in Half with Fewer Negative Side Effects

Multiple Sclerosis Drug Combined with Lipitor May Stop or Reverse Disease - Dosages Cut in Half with Fewer Negative Side Effects

Lipitor

Combining treatments may improve outcomes for patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), according to research done on mice and published online by the Journal of Clinical Investigation. Scott S. Zamvil and colleagues at the University of California, San Francisco found that mice treated with a combination of Glatiramer acetate (GA) and atorvastatin (Lipitor) demonstrated “a significant prevention and reversal of clinical MS severity” of MS symptoms. 

Lipitor is a cholesterol lowering drug that has previously been shown to improve MS symptoms. Glatiramer acetate (Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.'s Copaxone) is a drug currently approved for MS treatment.  The researchers found that treating MS with combinations of immune modulating drugs can greatly reduce MS disease.

According to the researchers, treating EAE (experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis) mice with the combination therapy caused the animals to lose less myelin, prevented CNS inflammation, and MS disease incidence.  Multiple Sclerosis Drug Combined with Lipitor May Stop or Reverse Disease - Dosages Cut in Half with Fewer Negative Side Effects


Aricept Makers Says 11 Patients Die in Alzheimer’s Disease Drug Study – Other Studies Compare Aricept, Razadyne and Exelon Treatments

Aricept Makers Says 11 Patients Die in Alzheimer’s Drug Study – Other Studies Compare Aricept, Razadyne and Exelon Treatments

Aricept

Aricept is a drug used to treat Alzheimer’s disease in people with mild to moderate forms of the disease.  In a new clinical trial, 11 patients out of 648 died while taking the drug while none died taking the placebo.  Aricept was given once daily for 24 weeks.  The placebo was given to 326 patients. 

The Japanese maker of the drug, Eisai Co Ltd, reported the results to regulatory authorities and investigators.  The drug has been advertised on Television and has not been approved for vascular dementia in the United States, Japan or Europe, but is approved for the condition in a half dozen smaller markets.

The trial was conducted in nine countries and involved patients with vascular dementia only. None of the participants were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Most patients had a history of stroke or heart disease, and were therefore also taking medicines to treat these cardiovascular problems.  Aricept Makers Says 11 Patients Die in Alzheimer’s Disease Drug Study – Other Studies Compare Aricept, Razadyne and Exelon Treatments


FACTT Blood Test May Detect Cancer AIDS and Alzheimer’s Disease Early – Breakthrough Technology 100,000 Times More Sensitive than Current Tests

FACTT Blood Test May Detect Cancer AIDS and Alzheimer’s Disease Early – Breakthrough Technology 100,000 Times More Sensitive than Current Tests

Mark Green PhD

A new breakthrough technology may allow for early detection of some cancers, Alzheimer ’s disease, HIV and other deadly conditions.  The sensitivity of the test is 100,000 times higher than that of some other blood tests.  Another test, ELISA (enzyme-linked immunoadsorbent assay), is used as a diagnostic test to determine exposure to infectious agents, such as HIV, by identifying antibodies present in a blood sample.

The New FACTT (Florescent Amplification Catalyzed by T7-polymerase) test is much more sensitive.  One of the researchers, Hongtao Zhang, PhD, said "The current ELISA tests can only detect proteins when they are in high abundance. But the problem is that many of the functional proteins – those that have a role in determining your health – exist in very low amounts until diseases are apparent and cannot be detected or measured at early stages of medical pathology. It was important to develop a technique that can detect these rare molecules to detect abnormalities at an early stage."  FACTT Blood Test May Detect Cancer AIDS and Alzheimer’s Disease Early – Breakthrough Technology 100,000 Times More Sensitive than Current Tests


Alzheimer's Disease Risk Reduced By Blood Pressure Medicine - Hydrochlorothiazide (HCT) Potassium Sparing Diuretics and Beta Blockers May Prevent Disease

Alzheimer's Disease Risk Reduced By Blood Pressure Medicine - Hydrochlorothiazide (HCT) Potassium Sparing Diuretics and Beta Blockers May Prevent Disease

Various HCT pills

Certain blood pressure lowering medications may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), according to a study that will be published in the May 2006 print issue of Archives of Neurology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.  Although hypertension (high blood pressure) may increase the risk of Alzheimer’s, it is unclear what the exact mechanism is that reduces the risk. 

The link between hypertension and AD prompted research to examine whether antihypertensive agents (medications prescribed to treat high blood pressure), could reduce the risk of AD.  The drugs include diuretics and beta blockers.  Diuretics make the kidneys excrete water and salt.  Beta blockers slow the heart rate reducing the hearts pumping action and widening blood vessels.  Alzheimer's Disease Risk Reduced By Blood Pressure Medicine - Hydrochlorothiazide (HCT) Potassium Sparing Diuretics and Beta Blockers May Prevent Disease 


Stress May Increase Risk of Cancer - Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) or Depression Treatments May Improve Immune System Response

Stress May Increase Risk of Cancer - Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) or Depression Treatments May Improve Immune System Response

Stress May Affect Health

There may be a connection between stress and cancer. Sure cancer can cause stress, but new findings may help us determine if stress can cause cancer.  Previous research from the National Institute on Aging suggests that there may be link between chronic depression and cancer among older patients. 

Researchers found that when present for at least six years, depression was associated with an increased risk of cancer.  The study in 1998 found that the cancer rate among those depressed was 88 percent higher than other patients, according to report from CNN.

Now ABC News reports that Dr. Charles Raison said, ”Inflammatory pathways activated by stress have been implicated in the development of tumors, metastasis of tumors, and resistance to chemotherapy.”  Raison is professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and director of the Behavioral Immunology Clinic at Emory University in Atlanta.  Stress May Increase Risk of Cancer - Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) or Depression Treatments May Improve Immune System Response


Mental Stress May Play Bigger Role in Heart Disease Than Previously Thought - Silent Ischemia without Chest Pain and Symptoms

Mental Stress May Play Bigger Role in Heart Disease Than Previously Thought - Silent Ischemia without Chest Pain and Symptoms

Human Heart

According to research from the University of Florida, heart disease patients could still pass stress tests done on a treadmill or with chemical stressors after treatment, their hearts may still suffer silent ischemia during mental stress.  Ischemia means that a heart, or other organ, does not get adequate blood flow and lacks vital oxygen and nutrients. 

The ischemia produced by mental stress has been associated with an increased risk of death in heart patients, who also suffer ischemia during physical stress.  David S. Sheps, M.D, said that the study just showed that mental stress ischemia can happen even in heart patients who are free of exercise-induced ischemia. The researchers are not sure whether the silent ischemia they detected is hazardous to the health of the patients.   

The researchers found that mental stress induced ischemia is more common than had been recognized before. The research supports proposals that suggest that mental stress works through a different mechanism than physical stress.   Mental Stress May Play Bigger Role in Heart Disease Than Previously Thought - Silent Ischemia without Chest Pain and Symptoms


Low Serotonin Levels May Play Role in Heat Disease – Raise Your Serotonin Levels Possibly with SAM-e and 5-HTP and Other Digestive Enzymes

Low Serotonin Levels May Play Role in Heat Disease – Raise Your Serotonin Levels Possibly with SAM-e and 5-HTP and Other Digestive Enzymes

5-HTP

Researcher may have found a link between serotonin levels and heart disease.  According to a study presented by University of Pittsburgh researchers at the 64th Annual Scientific Conference of the American Psychosomatic Society in Denver, a less active brain serotonin system is associated with early hardening of the arteries. 

This breakthrough could be helpful in developing a treatment for preventing heart disease and stroke.  Matthew F. Muldoon, M.D., said "Many of the known risk factors for heart disease and stroke – high blood pressure and cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, smoking and lack of exercise – can, to some extent, be controlled by our lifestyle choices."  He said that there were no previous studies that examined brain abnormalities and atherosclerosis.  Low Serotonin Levels May Play Role in Heat Disease – Raise Your Serotonin Levels Possibly with SAM-e and 5-HTP and Other Digestive Enzymes 


Heart Disease Patients Using SSRIs Higher Risk of Death - Anti-Depressant Drugs Increase May Be Dangerous - Duke University Medical Center

Heart Disease Patients Using SSRIs Higher Risk of Death - Anti-Depressant Drugs Increase May Be Dangerous - Duke University Medical Center

SSRIs

Researchers from Duke University Medical Center have discovered that coronary artery disease patients who take common antidepressant drugs may have a significantly higher risk of death.  Even after accounting for such factors as age, degree of heart disease and severity of depression, the researchers found that heart patients taking antidepressant medications had a 55 percent higher risk of dying.

The study suggests that doctors should reconsider treatment options for heart disease patients with depression.  The Duke team-leader, Lana Watkins, Ph.D., say that the findings add further support the potential role of non-pharmocological approaches to treating depression, such as exercise, for reducing the risk of death in depressed heart patients.  She recommends close monitoring of heart patients taking antidepressants. Heart Disease Patients Using SSRIs Higher Risk of Death - Anti-Depressant Drugs Increase May Be Dangerous - Duke University Medical Center


Depression - Emsam (Selegiline) is the first ever Drug Patch treatment that is approved by FDA – Has no dietary restrictions in MAOI Drug Class

Depression - Emsam (Selegiline) is the first ever Drug Patch treatment that is approved by FDA – Has no dietary restrictions in MAOI Drug Class

Example of a Patch

Emsam (selegiline) is the first skin patch that can be prescribed for treatment of major depression.  The patch lasts for one day and delivers 6-12 milligrams (depending on the prescription) of the selegiline medicine through the patient’s skin.  Selegiline is a monoamine oxidase inhibitor or MAOI requires no change in the person’s diet if they are using the smaller 6 mg patch.  If they are using the larger 12 mg patch they may have to restrict their diet the same as any Oral MAOI.

"Emsam provides a significant advance because at least in its lowest dose patients can use the drug without the usual dietary restrictions associated with these types of drugs known as MAO inhibitors,“ said Dr. Steven Galson, Director for the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.  Depression - Emsam (Selegiline) is the first ever Drug Patch treatment that is approved by FDA – Has no dietary restrictions in MAOI Drug Class


Multiple Sclerosis Drug Tysabri Showed Promise - MS Sufferers Ask the Food and Drug Administration to Bring it Back to Market

Multiple Sclerosis Drug Tysabri Showed Promise - MS Sufferers Ask the Food and Drug Administration to Bring it Back to Market

Tysabri

Stanford researchers have found that the new drug natalizumab (Tysabri) can have fatal consequences.  The drug went through the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) fast-track approval process in 2004 following promising results seen early in two clinical trials.  The drug has been used to treat multiple sclerosis (MS).

Two patients have contracted a rare brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) last month, and two died of the disease.  This spurred the marketer, Biogen Idec and Elan Pharmaceuticals, to pull the drug off the market until the risks can be investigated. 

Multiple sclerosis is an immune disorder that affects 400,000 Americans, mostly young adults.   MS is a debilitating disease that begins with numbness and muscle weakness, often getting worse with time.  The disease will cause nervous system damage.  Multiple Sclerosis Drug Tysabri Showed Promise - MS Sufferers Ask the Food and Drug Administration to Bring it Back to Market


Embryonic Stem Cell Treatments Show Promise for Degenerative Diseases and Paralysis - Alzheimer's Parkinson's Cancer Heart Disease and More

Embryonic Stem Cell Treatments Show Promise for Degenerative Diseases and Paralysis - Alzheimer's Parkinson's Cancer Heart Disease and More

Embryonic Stem Cells

Stem cell research and treatment may yield extraordinary results for ailments including heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, cancer and diabetes.  Embryonic stem cells also show promise for people that are paralyzed. 

The CBS News program 60 minutes ran a segment on the subject Sunday night.  Ed Bradley’s report included an interview with Dr. Hans Keirstead, a 38-year-old biologist, who said he is ready to try a stem cell procedure on people paralyzed by spinal cord injuries.  The doctor’s earlier trial showed success in treating a laboratory rat whose hind legs were completely paralyzed. 

Amazingly, after injecting the rat with human embryonic stem cells, the paralyzed rat was able to move its hind legs.  Dr. Keirstead told Mr. Bradley that “If it does the same thing in humans, I think we’ve hit something here that’s gonna be truly remarkable."  He hopes to begin clinical trials on patients that have recently been paralyzed first.  Embryonic Stem Cell Treatments Show Promise for Degenerative Diseases and Paralysis - Alzheimer's Parkinson's Cancer Heart Disease and More


Parkinson's Disease Clinical Trials will Include Co-Enzyme Q10 (CoQ10) Creatine Minocycline and GPI-1485 Treatment Options

Parkinson's Disease Clinical Trials will Include Co-Enzyme Q10 (CoQ10) Creatine Minocycline and GPI-1485 Treatment Options

Coenzyme Q-10

The Government is looking at substances that may offer hope in slowing the progression of Parkinson’s disease, as opposed to just treating the symptoms.  Various compounds will be tested including Co-Enzyme Q-10 (CoQ10), creatine, minocycline and GPI-1485. 

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is finalizing plans to enroll hundreds of early-stage Parkinson’s patients in this study.  An earlier study funded by the NIH found that creatine and minocycline may warrant further consideration.  Dr. Karl Kieburtz of the University of Rochester told the World Parkinson Congress last week that while the news is encouraging, the results do not demonstrate that these agents are effective in Parkinson’s disease.  His results will be published the March 14 issue of Neurology. 

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have organized a nationwide multi-center effort called NET-PD (Neuroprotection Exploratory Trials in Parkinson's Disease).   Parkinson's Disease Clinical Trials will Include Co-Enzyme Q10 (CoQ10) Creatine Minocycline and GPI-1485 Treatment Options


Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Treatment May Involve Gene Therapy - UCLA Researchers Found KCNC3 Gene Mutation

Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Treatment May Involve Gene Therapy - UCLA Researchers Found KCNC3 Gene Mutation

Areas of the Brain Affected By Parkinson's Disease

Researchers in Los Angeles believe they have linked a gene mutation that regulates how potassium enters cells to a neurodegenerative disease and to another disorder that causes mental retardation and coordination problems.  This discovery may lead to treatments for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. 

The movement disorder called spinocerebellar ataxia, usually appears in adulthood and causes loss of neurons in the brain's cerebellum, resulting in progressive loss of coordination (ataxia).  According to Dr Stefan Pulst "This type of gene has never before been linked to nerve cell death."  Dr. Pulst, of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center at the University of California, Los Angeles, led the new study. 

Dr. Pulst and his colleagues looked for the gene that caused the neurodegenerative movement disorder spinocerebellar ataxia in a Filipino family.  They believe the gene called KCNC3 may have something to do with ataxia.  Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Treatment May Involve Gene Therapy - UCLA Researchers Found KCNC3 Gene Mutation


Heart and Brain Health Linked - Alzheimer's Disease Risk can be Lowered by Exercise and Mental Stimulation

Heart and Brain Health Linked - Alzheimer's Disease Risk can be Lowered by Exercise and Mental Stimulation

Lower Risk by Exercise

Heart health and brain health are associated with each other, according to a multi-Institute collaboration of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) published online today in Alzheimer's & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer's Association.  It may be possible to maintain brain health as we age by making good lifestyle choices, such as exercise, learning new things and staying socially connected.

From the public health perspective, the researchers believe that by controlling cardiovascular (CV) risk factors we can help maintain “brain health”.  These factors include reducing blood pressure, reducing weight, reducing cholesterol, treating (or preferably avoiding) diabetes, and not smoking.

Committee chair Hugh Hendrie, MB, ChB, DSc, said “Based on our review of CV risk factors, the link between hypertension and cognitive decline was the most robust across studies.”  He is a professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Indiana University School of Medicine.  Heart and Brain Health Linked - Alzheimer's Disease Risk can be Lowered by Exercise and Mental Stimulation


Stroke Patients with Aphasia can be helped with Speech Generating Device

Stroke Patients with Aphasia can be helped with Speech Generating Device

Lingraphicare's Lingraphica has Touch Screen capabilities

According to a research report by Lingraphicare America, there are an estimated 80,000 to 90,000 Americans that suffer a stroke that cause them to lose their ability to understand or express themselves with speech.  The term called aphasia is a just one of the frustrating disabilities that a stroke patient can endure.  It is estimated there are currently 1 million Americans that have aphasia.

A research project from Lingraphicare America, a manufacturer of the Lingraphica speech generating device for aphasia found that extended use of their product over a 20 week period helped aphasia patients improve their condition.  The Lingraphica speech generating device is a computer laptop that has specially designed software that has easy to select pictures that will speak the words or phrases for the corresponding picture.  Stroke Patients with Aphasia can be helped with Speech Generating Device


Sick Spouse Increases Risk of Death for Partners - Mortality Rate Depends on Illness

Sick Spouse Increases Risk of Death for Partners - Mortality Rate Depends on Illness

Nicholas Christakis

A new report suggests that hospitalization of a spouse for a serious illness also increases their partner’s risk of death.  They even found that some diagnoses raise the risk even more, including dementia, stroke, and hip fracture. 

The study, funded by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), found that the spouse’s risk of death remains elevated for an extended period of time.  One of the investigators, Nicholas A. Christakis, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., of Harvard Medical School, said “When a spouse is hospitalized, the partner’s risk of death increases significantly, and remains elevated for up to two years.”

Researchers have known for some time that our social network is important to health.  Even family pets have been known to boost ones health. Richard M. Suzman, Ph.D., Associate Director of the NIA for Behavioral and Social Research, said “This highly innovative study — in an enormous sample of older people — demonstrates yet another important connection between social networks and health.”  Sick Spouse Increases Risk of Death for Partners - Mortality Rate Depends on Illness


Self-Predications creates Success or Failure in People

Self-Predications creates Success or Failure in People

Crystal Ball

Instead of just making a list of thing you want to change about your life, you should understand that it is how you see yourself in the future that either makes or breaks your dreams.

Making predictions about your future will increase the chance of actually doing it, says a research study published in the March 2006 issue of the Journal of Consumer Research.  They use an example of a person that predicts that they will do a socially good deed, like recycling.  The people that used the self-prediction technique increased their chance of actually doing the deed.

The researchers call is “self-prophecy effect” which can be more beneficial from one person to another.  "A clear benefit of the self-prophecy technique is its simplicity: a question followed by a simple "yes" or "no" elicits behavioral change," said the studies authors, Eric R. Spangenberg and David E. Sprott from Washington State University.  Self-Predications creates Success or Failure in People


Depression may be Linked to Rapid Decline in Alzheimer’s Disease

Depression may be Linked to Rapid Decline in Alzheimer’s Disease

The Brain

People that suffer from depression may be more likely to have a more rapid decline in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). A study published in the February issue of Archives of General Psychiatry states that “People with a lifetime history of major depressive disorder (MDD) may be more likely to be diagnosed with AD.”  

Previous studies have linked depression and Alzheimer’s disease.  Both MDD and AD affect the brain’s memory related temporal lobes.  Also, MDD is likely to cause atrophy of the hippocampus.  The hippocampus is the area of the brain where plaques and tangles form in a patient with AD, according to the authors.

Researchers at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, compared the brains of 44 AD patients with a history of depression to 51 without depression.  Of this group, 32 were men and 63 were women.  On average age of death was 81 years.  Depression may be Linked to Rapid Decline in Alzheimer’s Disease


Depression Drugs given to Pregnant Mothers May Affect Newborn Babies – Infants Withdraw From SSRIs

Depression Drugs given to Pregnant Mothers May Affect Newborn Babies – Infants Withdraw From SSRIs

SSRIs

Concerns for women taking Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) while pregnant were addressed in a new study published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.  This is one of the archive journals of the American Medical Association. 

According to the researchers, infants born to mothers that took SSRIs show signs of withdraw shortly after birth.  The journal states that “Almost one-third of 60 newborn infants whose mothers took antidepressants during pregnancy experienced neonatal abstinence syndrome, a type of withdrawal with symptoms that include high-pitched crying, tremors and disturbed sleep.”  The authors say that infants born to mothers taking SSRIs while pregnant, should be monitored closely after birth for a minimum of 48 hours.  Depression Drugs given to Pregnant Mothers May Affect Newborn Babies – Infants Withdraw From SSRIs


Doctors should consider Anticholinergic Drug Use by Patients before Treating for Alzheimer's Disease in Elderly Patients

Doctors should consider Anticholinergic Drug Use by Patients before Treating for Alzheimer's Disease in Elderly Patients

Antihistamine

Drugs including bronchodilators, antihistamines, analgesics, anti-hypertensives, antiparkinsonian agents may lead to mild cognitive impairment in elderly patients.  According to an article published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) these “anticholinergic drugs” are linked to mental impairment.

These drugs are commonly used to treat irritable bowel syndrome, urinary incontinence and Parkinson’s disease in older patients.  In a press release issued by the BMJ, it is important for doctors to be aware of this side effect.

The researchers interviewed 372 elderly people without dementia about their current and past illnesses and drug use.  Their cognitive performance was assessed and participants were monitored for up to eight years.   Doctors should consider Anticholinergic Drug Use by Patients before Treating for Alzheimer's Disease in Elderly Patients


Managing Anger – Study says Angry Men cause Injuries

Managing Anger – Study says Angry Men cause Injuries

anger

A new report published in the January/February issue of Annals of Family Medicine found that Anger increases the chance of a person becoming injured.  Men were injured from anger more often than women.

The researchers studied more than 2,500 patients.  By going over the interviews of the people that were seriously injured in the emergency room, the researchers found that 31.7 percent of these patients had some amount of irritability just before being injured.  There was 18.1 percent that reported being angry and 13.2 percent felt hostile before the injury happened.  Managing Anger – Study says Angry Men cause Injuries.  Managing Anger – Study says Angry Men cause Injuries


Pregnant Women should Keep Taking Antidepressants to Avoid Relapse of Depression

Pregnant Women should Keep Taking Antidepressants to Avoid Relapse of Depression - Pregnancy Hormones Don't Protect  - Study

Yoga during Pregnant

Women who stop taking antidepressants during pregnancy are five times more likely to have relapse of depression than women who continue the medication throughout their pregnancy.  According to Lee Cohen, MD, director of the Perinatal and Reproductive Clinical Research Program at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), who led the investigation “Clinical lore has held for decades that pregnancy protected women from mood disorders.”

The findings from the first systematic clinical study of depression relapse runs counter to the long held belief that hormonal changes can prevent psychiatric problems.  Dr. Cohen said "What drove this study was a divergence between that belief and what many of us were seeing clinically, that many women who stopped using antidepressants during pregnancy appeared to be relapsing."

According to the MGH press release, many published studies have supported the safety of antidepressant drugs taken while pregnant.  There have been some reports of prenatal exposure to the popular selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).  These exposures could cause transient agitation or distress in newborns, according to MGH.  Pregnant Women should Keep Taking Antidepressants to Avoid Relapse of Depression - Pregnancy Hormones Don't Protect  - Study


Smart Parents more likely to have Autistic Children – Genetic Link with Analytical Minds and Autism

Smart Parents more likely to have Autistic Children – Genetic Link with Analytical Minds

Einstein

In an article published in the Archives of Disease of Childhood, Professor Baron-Cohen claims that children born to analytical couples, such as scientists, may be more likely to have children with autism.  Cohen, a professor at the University of Cambridge, believes the same gene that makes people analytical may also impair social and communications skills. 

A weakness in communications and social skills is a key characteristic of autism, according to the paper.  It is believed that one in 100 children has a form of autism, and most of these are boys.  According to the researchers, the number of diagnoses seems to be on the increase.  Some believe this may be because of greater awareness though.

Dr. Cohen labels people such as scientists, mathematicians and engineers as “systemizers”.  They are skilled in analyzing systems, like vehicles, math equations, etc. to figure out how they work.  Smart Parents more likely to have Autistic Children – Genetic Link with Analytical Minds and Autism


Sleep Disorders and Headaches Connected – Children that suffer Headaches might have Sleep Problems

Sleep Disorders and Headaches Connected – Children that suffer Headaches might have Sleep Problems

Children - headaches and sleep

Many children that suffer from daily chronic headaches also suffer from sleep disturbances, especially a delay in sleep onset. Researchers at the Mayo Clinic believe there may be an association.  The findings will be presented at the 24th Annual Conference on Sleep Disorders in Infancy and Childhood in Rancho Mirage, California.

Kenneth Mack, MD, PhD, pediatric neurologist specializing in headache and the senior study investigator said "What's novel in our study is the finding that a high percentage of patients with headache have sleep disturbance."  One-fifth of the children with episodic headaches also had sleep problems. The children “also have the same sleep disturbances: a delay in sleep onset."  Sleep Disorders and Headaches Connected – Children that suffer Headaches might have Sleep Problems


Parkinson’s disease - LRRK2 Gene mutation Identified

Parkinson’s disease - LRRK2 Gene mutation Identified

Middle East

A group of researchers from Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University and Manhattan hospital, Beth Israel Medical Center have isolated a gene mutation which is a major cause of Parkinson’s disease which among Ashkenazi Jewish patients.

The report will be published in today’s issue of The New England Journal of Medicine. Researchers of this study believe that this will be the first time that a genetic test can help determine the risk for developing Parkinson’s disease.  Before this there was no genetic test to help to determine the risk.  Parkinson’s disease - LRRK2 Gene mutation Identified


Eating Fish high in Omega-3 Fatty Acid makes Babies Smarter

Eating Fish high in Omega-3 Fatty Acid makes Babies Smarter

Smart Baby

A recent study reported by BBC News said that intelligence in a baby improves with mothers eating Omega-3 rich food during their pregnancy.

The study conducted in Avon, UK, looked at 9,000 mothers and children and found that those who had eaten less of Omega-3, an essential fatty acid, had lower IQs.

Institutes of Health in the US researched and calculated the data gathered in the Avon study and came up with the following statistics.  The mothers with the lowest intake of Omega-3 in their diet had children who on average were six points lower on verbal IQ.  Eating Fish high in Omega-3 Fatty Acid makes Babies Smarter


Work Related Stress Linked to Heart Disease and Diabetes  - British Journal of Medicine

Work Related Stress Linked to Heart Disease and Diabetes  - British Journal of Medicine

Stress at work

Stress at work can lead to a metabolic syndrome that causes heart disease and diabetes, according to researchers at the University College London.  The exact causes are unclear but there is new evidence for the “biological plausibility” link between work stress and heart disease.

The researchers looked at 10,308 British civil servants between the ages of 35 and 55 over a 14 year period.  They measured work stress four times between 1985 and 1999 and they also measured risk factors for the metabolic syndrome between 1997 and 1999.  These risk factors include obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.  The researchers also took into account social position, smoking, heavy alcohol consumption and lack of exercise.  Work Related Stress Linked to Heart Disease and Diabetes  - British Journal of Medicine  


How to get Pregnant by Understanding Emotional Desires during Ovulation

How to get Pregnant by Understanding Emotional Desires during Ovulation

calendar

Researchers believe that some women may be able to detect their most fertile part of their cycle by the desires to cheat on their mates.  This happens when women find their mates less sexually attractive than other men.

Researchers at UCLA and the University of New Mexico did investigations in women’s fertility and their desires.  The researcher’s studied 38 women that are co-ed college students.  How to get Pregnant by Understanding Emotional Desires during Ovulation


Bipolar Disorder newly discovered FAT gene Doubles Risk

Bipolar Disorder newly discovered FAT gene Doubles Risk

Lithium

Researchers believe they have discovered a gene that doubles the risk for people to develop bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness.

Scientists at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research and the University of New South Wales, Syndey, discovered a gene related to bipolar disorder.  There have been other genes discovered in the past; however this discovery has been verified by four different independent study groups in the UK, Australia, and Bulgaria.  Bipolar Disorder newly discovered FAT gene Doubles Risk


Shock Therapy and Antidepressant Drugs Best Options for Depression

Shock Therapy and Antidepressant Drugs Best Options for Depression

Depression and Mind

It appears that antidepressant drugs don’t increase the risk of suicide, and shock treatment may be the most effective therapy for depression, especially if psychotic symptoms include hallucinations.  This is according to research done at the University of Edinburgh and the University of Aberdeen.

Depression is a common condition affecting between 15 and 17 percent of people over their lifetime.  This is how many people are diagnosed with depression, but the real numbers are likely higher.  In fact according to the study only 25 to 50 percent of those affected seek treatment.

The researchers looked at 65,000 children and adults treated for depression over a ten year period starting in 1992.  They found that suicide risk declines after treatment begins with medications such as serotonin Reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).  This is the conclusion reached after five years of analysis and research into depression.  Shock Therapy and Antidepressant Drugs Best Options for Depression


Phonics Breakthrough for Treating Dyslexia in Adults

Phonics Breakthrough for Treating Dyslexia in Adults

Phonics Breakthrough

It is important to diagnose dyslexia as early as possible.  Dyslexia is neurological in origin and is characterized by difficulties with accurate or fluent word recognition.  Dyslexics may possess poor spelling skills and word-decoding abilities according to the International Dyslexia Association. 

Dyslexics may have problems matching word sounds with written symbols.  Doug Worgul of Knight Ridder News service calls the condition “serious and life-altering.  There are some warning signs for early detection.  Kids in grades 1 through 3 may confuse similar letters like b and d or w and m.  They may also mix up sounds that are similar.  They may mix up letters in words.  They may skip or add letters to words.  In stead of spelling stop they may spell pots.

As kids get older the warning signs may continue.  Kids may not be aware of prefixes or suffixes.  They may have trouble with reading comprehension.  Phonics Breakthrough for Treating Dyslexia in Adults


Depression caused by a lack of P11 Protein

Depression caused by a lack of P11 Protein

Serotonin

Nobel Laureate researchers discovered a protein call P11, which they believe acts like an antidepressant.

First reported in Science, Paul Greengard, Ph.D, a Rockefeller University neuroscientist who also received the 2000 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine said, "Mice deficient in this protein, called p11, display depression-like behaviors, while those with sufficient amounts behave as if they have been treated with antidepressants."

Greengard and his colleagues discovered that P11 protein is able to help in the regulation of serotonin.  Low levels of serotonin have long been known to cause depression and anxiety.  Depression caused by a lack of P11 Protein


Genetics may increase risk for major Depression in Women

Genetics may increase risk for major Depression in Women

Prozac

Virginia Commonwealth University researchers found that genes may increase the risk of women developing depression more than in men.  This genetic factor increases the risk to approximately 42 percent with women and approximately 29 percent in men. 

First reported in the January issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry this study is a large study in twins.  The researchers studied 42,000 twins with 15,000 being complete pairs from the Swedish National Twin Registry.   Genetics may increase risk for major Depression in Women


Alzheimer’s Disease could be Caused by a New Type 3 Diabetes

Alzheimer’s Disease could be Caused by a New Type 3 Diabetes

Alzheimer's Diabetes Link

Researchers may see a connection between diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.  In fact, according to researchers, Alzheimer’s may be a third type of diabetes.  The researchers examined insulin and the insulin receptor function in an area of the brain affected by Alzheimer’s disease.

The study compared the brain tissues of people who died at various stages of the disease.  Postmortem brain tissue of 45 patients with normal aging or different degrees of Alzheimer’s neurodegeneration, termed “Braak Stages” was examined.

The research conducted at the Rhode Island Hospital and Brown Medical School discovered that the insulin receptors dropped off significantly in the brain even in the early stages of the disease.  The number of receptors continues to drop off as the disease progresses.  Alzheimer’s Disease could be Caused by a New Type 3 Diabetes


Alzheimer’s Disease caused by Low Estrogen in Brain Tissue

Alzheimer’s Disease caused by Low Estrogen in Brain Tissue

Neurofibrillary Tangles (left) Senile Plaque ( right)

Studies of post-mortem brains of women that suffered of Alzheimer’s disease showed they had significantly lower levels of estrogen in their brain tissue compared to women of similar age without the disorder.

First reported in this week’s online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the research shows that the lower level of estrogen can increase a women’s risk of having Alzheimer’s disease.  It is more common for women to suffer of Alzheimer’s compared to men.  One reason this is so is that women generally live longer, but the estrogen link may also contribute to a potential aid in preventing this debilitating disease.

Estrogen reduction alone does not insure that women will get Alzheimer’s, less than a quarter of women will get Alzheimer’s.  Alzheimer’s Disease caused by Low Estrogen in Brain Tissue

5 Tips to Help Kids with ADHD Enjoy Christmas

5 Tips to Help Kids with ADHD Enjoy Christmas

ADHD

Parents of children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) often cringe during the holidays. The expectation of presents and chaotic busyness can turn already energetic children into spinning tops.

Celebrate!ADHD, which provides positive solutions for families affected by ADHD, has developed a list of “5 Tips to Help Children with ADHD Enjoy Christmas.”

“Most families self-destruct and miss out on the spirit of the season,” says Celebrate!ADHD Founder Kirk Martin. “We think parents can make this the most special holiday season ever by working with their child’s nature, instead of against it.”  5 Tips to Help Kids with ADHD Enjoy Christmas


Does Therapy Work?

Does Therapy Work?

Richard Geller

Therapy and counseling: Do they make you better? Let’s look at the evidence.  People want marriage counseling. They want help with anxiety and depression. They want therapy for their children and for their adolescents. But they also want to know whether therapy and counseling is scientifically proven to work.

Today, insurance companies will pay for some therapy, but they often limit what they will pay for. The question is, does therapy work in a scientifically proven way? And if so, what types of therapies work better than others?

How researchers test if therapy works.  It's important to note that scientists believe experimental evidence is needed to prove that therapy works.  For instance, new drugs are tested in so-called double-blind studies. Some people receive the experimental drug. Does Therapy Work?


ADHD and Learning Disabilities - new Treatment - new Hope

ADHD and Learning Disabilities - new Treatment - new Hope

Lovastatin

There is a promising new discovery about a drug that helps in learning disabilities.  The drug called Lovastatin, is a commonly prescribed cholesterol-lowering medicine available today.  The discovery was by Neurobiologist Alcino Silva and colleagues at the University of California - Los Angeles and it offers new hope for many people.

Neurofibromatosis type I (NF1) is the condition that Lovastatin hopefully will be able to fix in the future.  This condition affects more that 1 in 3,000 people.  It is either inherited, or an isolated mutation, which is then inheritable.   NF1 symptoms cause the person developmental cognitive disabilities in up to half who are carriers of the defective gene.  It shows up as deficits in memory, motor coordination, and spatial learning.  It is also know to cause attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). ADHD and Learning Disabilities - new Treatment - new Hope

 
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Copyright 2005 Best Syndication                                            Last Updated Sunday, July 11, 2010 01:18 AM