Archive for the ‘health’ category

Aug 3, 2022

The serotonin theory of depression: a systematic umbrella review of the evidence

Posted by in categories: education, genetics, health, neuroscience

In order to cover the different areas and to manage the large volume of research that has been conducted on the serotonin system, we conducted an ‘umbrella’ review. Umbrella reviews survey existing systematic reviews and meta-analyses relevant to a research question and represent one of the highest levels of evidence synthesis available [23]. Although they are traditionally restricted to systematic reviews and meta-analyses, we aimed to identify the best evidence available. Therefore, we also included some large studies that combined data from individual studies but did not employ conventional systematic review methods, and one large genetic study. The latter used nationwide databases to capture more individuals than entire meta-analyses, so is likely to provide even more reliable evidence than syntheses of individual studies.

We first conducted a scoping review to identify areas of research consistently held to provide support for the serotonin hypothesis of depression. Six areas were identified, addressing the following questions: Serotonin and the serotonin metabolite 5-HIAA–whether there are lower levels of serotonin and 5-HIAA in body fluids in depression; Receptors — whether serotonin receptor levels are altered in people with depression; The serotonin transporter (SERT) — whether there are higher levels of the serotonin transporter in people with depression (which would lower synaptic levels of serotonin); Depletion studies — whether tryptophan depletion (which lowers available serotonin) can induce depression; SERT gene – whether there are higher levels of the serotonin transporter gene in people with depression; Whether there is an interaction between the SERT gene and stress in depression.

We searched for systematic reviews, meta-analyses, and large database studies in these six areas in PubMed, EMBASE and PsycINFO using the Healthcare Databases Advanced Search tool provided by Health Education England and NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence). Searches were conducted until December 2020.

Aug 3, 2022

Traffic Noise Can Slow Cognitive Development

Posted by in categories: education, health, neuroscience

However, the research which was published in PLoS Medicine found that noise levels in the house had no effect on the results of working memory and attention tests.

Road traffic noise is a common issue in cities, but its effects on children’s health are still not fully known. According to recent research done at 38 schools in Barcelona, road noise has a negative impact on how well working memory and attention are developed in young children. The results of this investigation, which was conducted under the direction of the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), a facility supported by the “la Caixa” Foundation, were released in the journal PLoS Medicine.

2,680 kids between the ages of 7 and 10 participated in the study, which was part of the BREATHE initiative and directed by researchers Maria Foraster and Jordi Sunyer. The researchers focused on attention and working memory, two skills that grow quickly throughout preadolescence and are crucial for learning and academic success, in order to gauge the potential effects of traffic noise on cognitive development.

Aug 3, 2022

Scientists Uncover the Biological Causes of Social Withdrawal

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Researchers find multiple important biomarkers in people with Hikikomori (pathological social withdrawal), and they demonstrate their potential for predicting the severity of the disorder.

Key blood biomarkers for the pathological social withdrawal disorder called Hikikomori have been discovered by researchers at Kyushu University. The team’s research enabled them to distinguish between healthy people and hikikomori sufferers, as well as to gauge the severity of the disease.

Hikikomori is a condition in which people isolate themselves from society and family for a time longer than six months, according to the Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare of Japan. Hikikomori, also called “pathological social withdrawal,” is said to affect over a million individuals in Japan as of 2022. Although it has traditionally been thought of as a syndrome specific to the Japanese culture, evidence over the past few decades has shown that it is increasingly becoming a global phenomenon. Some fear that the COVID-19.

Aug 3, 2022

Monkeypox Updates: Transmission, Symptoms, and Treatment

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

With the 2020 Covid lockdowns still fresh in our minds, the recent outbreak of monkeypox in the United States has many people on edge. But what is monkeypox? How significant is this outbreak? Will it get worse? How can you prepare? These are alarming questions that people across the world are asking right now, and here we hope to answer at least a few of them.

Monkeypox is a member of the orthopoxvirus genus, the same genus that also houses the variola virus that causes smallpox. While the name suggests the virus originated in monkeys, this is misleading. It is more likely that rodents and small mammals are the origin of this zoonotic disease, with the source of a 2003 outbreak coming from prairie dogs.

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Aug 3, 2022

Prototype battery only needs seconds of sunlight to keep smart wearables charged

Posted by in categories: health, internet, solar power, sustainability, wearables

Thirty seconds of sunlight could boost the battery life of future smartwatches and other wearables by tens of minutes, thanks to a renewable and rechargeable battery prototype developed by the University of Surrey.

Surrey’s Advanced Technology Institute (ATI) has demonstrated how its new photo-rechargeable system, which merges zinc-ion batteries with , could allow wearables to spring back to life without the need to plug in.

Jinxin Bi, a Ph.D. candidate at ATI and the first author of the paper, says that “this technology provides a promising strategy for efficient use of clean energy and enables wearable electronics to be operated continuously without plug-in charging. Our prototype could represent a step forward to how we interact with wearables and other internet-of-things devices, such as remote real-time health monitors.”

Aug 2, 2022

California declares a state of emergency over monkeypox outbreak, following New York and Illinois

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government, health


Newsom said the emergency declaration would help support the state’s vaccination efforts. Demand for the vaccines has outstripped supply as infections rise. Staff at sexual health clinics and other sites have struggled to keep up with the influx of people seeking the shots.

California is mobilizing personnel from its Emergency Medical Services to help administer the vaccines. Newsom said the state is working across all levels of government to slow the spread through testing, contract tracing and community outreach.

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Aug 2, 2022

A flexible device that harvests thermal energy to power wearable electronics

Posted by in categories: energy, health, wearables

Wearable electronics, from health and fitness trackers to virtual reality headsets, are part of our everyday lives. But finding ways to continuously power these devices is a challenge.

University of Washington researchers have developed an innovative solution: the first-of-its kind flexible, wearable thermoelectric device that converts to electricity. This device is soft and stretchable, yet sturdy and efficient—properties that can be challenging to combine.

The team published these findings July 24 in Advanced Energy Materials.

Jul 30, 2022

New York City declares monkeypox a public health emergency

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

NEW YORK (AP) — Officials in New York City declared a public health emergency due to the spread of the monkeypox virus Saturday, calling the city “the epicenter” of the outbreak.

The announcement Saturday by Mayor Eric Adams and health Commissioner Ashwin Vasan said as many as 150,000 city residents could be at risk of infection. The declaration will allow officials to issue emergency orders under the city health code and amend code provisions to implement measures to help slow the spread.

In the last two days, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul declared a state disaster emergency declaration and the state health department called monkeypox an “imminent threat to public health.”

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Jul 30, 2022

New bioremediation material can clean ‘forever chemicals’

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, engineering, food, health

A novel bioremediation technology for cleaning up per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, chemical pollutants that threaten human health and ecosystem sustainability, has been developed by Texas A&M AgriLife researchers. The material has potential for commercial application for disposing of PFAS, also known as “forever chemicals.”

Published July 28 in Nature Communications, the was a collaboration of Susie Dai, Ph.D., associate professor in the Texas A&M Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology, and Joshua Yuan, Ph.D., chair and professor in Washington University in St. Louis Department of Energy, Environmental and Chemical Engineering, formerly with the Texas A&M Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology.

Removing PFAS contamination is a challenge

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Jul 30, 2022

Dr. Arye Elfenbein, MD, PhD — Co-Founder, Wildtype — Building A Better Food System

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food, health

Dr. Arye Elfenbein, MD, PhD, is the Co-Founder of Wildtype (https://www.wildtypefoods.com/), a biotechnology company which produces cultured seafood (with a focus on cultivated Pacific salmon) from fish cells, sustainably and cost effectively, with the nutritional benefits, but without common contaminants such as mercury, microplastics, antibiotics, or pesticides, and without relying on commercial fishing or fish farming.

Born in Israel and raised in Australia, Dr. Elfenbein combines his deep passion for medicine and unique childhood connection to the ocean to fuel Wildtype’s health and environmental mission.

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