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Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 associated with increased croup virus in children

Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital have identified a link between increased prevalence of croup among children and the omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2. (Credit: Olga Siletskaya/Moment via Getty Images) The underlying SARS-CoV-2 has changed during the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Early forms of SARS-CoV-2 infection in children largely affected the lower respiratory system, although later variations had varied effects. The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant, in contrast, favors the upper respiratory tract. Although it is well recognized that common coronaviruses may…

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Researchers develop graphene tattoo that can continuously monitor blood pressure

A group of researchers have developed an ultra-thin, continuous blood pressure monitoring tattoo that can be worn directly on the skin. The researchers believe that this innovation will help aid in the effort to creating more personalized healthcare. (Credit: University of Texas at Austin, UT News) A collaborative effort between University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University researchers has led to the development of a novel electronic “tattoo” that can continually monitor a patient’s blood pressure. Better…

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Memory impairment and difficulties focusing among the symptoms COVID ‘long-haulers’ continue to face

A UC San Diego research team has revealed the neurological conditions that many people face months following infection by SARS-CoV-2. The first batch of data from the University of California San Diego School of Medicine’s longitudinal research study on post-COVID conditions has been released. Their data showed the incidence of a variety of short- and long-term symptoms. Additionally, they reported that while many patients improved, the majority still had neurological issues after six months. A minority of people also…

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Cancer drug shows 100% efficacy in clinical trial involving a dozen patients

A clinical trial assessing the efficacy of drug, Dostarlimab, on a subtype of colorectal cancer was shown to be effective in eliminating cancer in all of the trial’s patients. (Credit: Dr_Microbe, Getty Images/iStockphoto) A study reporting on a phase II clinical trial consisting of 12 patients revealed that all of its patient’s were in remission following the use of immunotherapy drug, Dostarlimab, also sold under the brand name, Jemperli. The clincal trial participants all had a particular type rectal…

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Researchers develop artificial muscle fibers capable of mimicking human muscles

When compared to present actuators, the proposed copolymer muscle fibers outperform them in various areas, including efficiency (75.5%), actuation strain (80%), and mechanical characteristics (strain-at-break of up to 900%). (Credit: istockphoto; CreVis) According to a new study published in Nature Nanotechnology, a research group from the University of Texas at Austin has developed a new type of fiber that can operate like an artificial muscle and is far superior than current alternatives. All the more impressive, these muscle-like fibers…

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Age-related cognitive decline shown to be accelerated by type 2 diabetes

According to a newly published study, age-related cognitive decline occurs at an increased rate of 26% in those with type 2 diabetes (T2D) compared to people without the disease. (Credit: Goldsmiths, University of London) The researchers looked at the association between regular brain aging and T2D, finding that T2D has a similar neurodegenerative pattern to normal aging, but it proceeds faster. This study has several major implications, one of which is that even normal brain aging might reflect changes…

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CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing shown to change social behaviors in animal models

A Georgia State University research team has used CRISPR gene editing technology to show how the Avpr1a receptor affects social behaviors in hamsters. CRISPR-Cas9 technology was utilized by a team of Georgia State University researchers led by Professor of Neuroscience H. Elliott Albers and Professor Kim Huhman to disable the functions of a neurochemical signaling pathway that regulates social behaviors in mammals. Vasopressin and the Avpr1a receptor on which it activates influence a variety of social behaviors, including social…

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Varying microbiome composition may explain differences in statin efficacy

A new study’s mix of microbiome and genetic data yields fascinating new insights into possible precision medicine treatment techniques for cardiovascular disease. According to researchers at the Institute for Systems Biology, the heterogeneity in the human microbiome might explain various patient reactions to statins. The findings suggest that taking this into account may help improve precision statin treatments for individuals. The study’s results show that the makeup and variety of the gut microbiota are predictive of statin effectiveness and…

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Lipodomic analysis identifies new lipid biomarkers for heart disease and type 2 diabetes

Researches from Deutsches Zentrum fuer Diabetesforschung (DZD), have identified new lipid biomarkers for CVD and T2D using lipodomic analysis. The team also found that increasing unsaturated fatty acid intake reduced risk-associated lipids. Heart disease is the global leading cause of mortality, leading to approximately 18 million fatalities each year. People with type 2 diabetes are two to three times more likely to have a heart attack or stroke. For decades, the number of individuals impacted has been gradually increasing.…

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Mechanism identified showing how air pollution affects lung tissue

Researchers at Nanjing University have identified a mechanism by which air pollutants affect the structure of lung tissue and increase cancer risk. According to a research published today in eLife, scientists have discovered a mechanism that describes how small air pollution particulates may cause lung cancer. The discovery may pave the way for novel techniques to preventing or treating the disease’s early stages. Fine particulate matter (FPM), a tiny, inhalable particle present in air pollution, has been identified as…

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Yale researchers uncover key regulator of weight-gain suggesting a treatment target for metabolic disorders

A Yale research team found that a protein called, augmentor-alpha, is a key regulator of body weight in mice. (Picture: Obese mice (right) and normal-sized mice (left) in a study on induced-feeding behaviors. Credit: Georgejason/iStock/Getty Images Plus). According to Yale researchers, protein known as augmentor-alpha regulates body weight in mice, an understanding that might lead to novel therapies for metabolic illnesses. Because of its link to cancer, the group of researchers chose to dig more into augmentor-alpha as a…

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Late-life alcohol abuse shown to be a possible symptom of dementia

People over 40 years old who develop alcohol abuse behaviors may be doing so in response to underlying brain disorders, such as early-onset dementia. According to a new study, adults who begin abusing alcohol later in life — after the age of 40 — may be doing so as a result of an underlying neurologic condition such as frontotemporal dementia. The findings were published by a research team from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and the…

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Mild exercise shown to immediately increase memory function

University of California- Irvine and University of Tsukuba researchers utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to identify increased activity in the critical brain areas linked to detailed memory processing. (Picture: Brain scans showing the areas of brain activation following exercise; Credit: Getty/iStock). Even extremely mild exercises can boost the connection between areas of the brain important for memory creation and preservation, according to researchers from the University of California, Irvine and the University of Tsukuba in Japan. The researchers…

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Glucose and lipid levels in early adulthood found to be associated with Alzheimer’s disease

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine found that low HDL, high LDL, and high glucose levels at midlife are all associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease later in life. (Picture: A comparison of a health brain (left) compared to a Alzheimer’s diseased brain (right)). A Boston University research team has found that neglecting cholesterol and glucose levels early in adulthood may increase your risk of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) later in life. Lower HDL (high-density lipoproteins) and…

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New decision support system reduced pneumonia mortality rate by 38%

Intermountain Healthcare researchers have demonstrated the clinical effectiveness of an electronic decision support system (eNPa) for patients with pneumonia. According to a new study by researchers at Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City, a new electronic decision support system helped clinicians at community hospitals deliver best practice care for emergency department patients with pneumonia, more effective antibiotic use, and 38% lower mortality rates. Pneumonia has been the main cause of death from infectious illnesses in the United States since…

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