Because misfortunes never come alone, a new research suggests that receiving a depression diagnose may also increase chances of developing Parkinson’s disease in years to come.
The extensive study examined approximately 140,000 people diagnosed with depression between 1987 and 2012. All participants were older than 50 by 2005, as Parkinson’s is a disease that develops later in life.
Researchers paired each depressed patient with three people of the same gender and age who did not suffer from depression, a method of establishing a control group for the study.
The follow-up period was 26 years, and results showed a difference of 0.6 between the people with depression who developed Parkinson’s disease (a total of 1 percent) and the participants free from depression who also developed the disease.
According to these results, Parkinson’s disease is not at all that common – even when people suffer from depression. Study author Peter Nordström, of Umeå University in Umeå, Sweden, however, believes this link needs further research.
In the past few years, various studies added to the growing body of research that examines possible connections between Parkinson’s disease and other health problems and personality traits. A 2012 study showed a link between being cautious and reluctant of taking risks translates in a higher risk of developing the disease.
The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation’s data reports around 1 million of people suffering from Parkinson’s in the U.S. The disease is caused by losing the brain cells that are responsible with producing dopamine. Symptoms generally affect body movements; tremors and shaky hands, rigid muscles and defective balance.
The study also found a connection between the onset of Parkinson’s in people who suffer from depression – results showed it develops earlier than in people without depression. Depression seemed to increase the risks of developing the tremors by 3.2 times within a year after the study started.
Severity of depression was also an element factored in the likelihood of developing Parkinson’s disease. Patients who needed hospitalization for their depression turned out to be 3 times more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than those who also had depression, but not so severe they were hospitalized because of it.
Even though results show there is indeed a connection between depression and Parkinson’s disease, researchers could not put their finger on it. They can only speculate that depression alters the brain in such ways that developing Parkinson’s disease increases in likelihood.
Other suggestions said that medical treatments for depression – antidepressants or antipsychotics – might also play a role in raising a patient’s risk of developing the disease.
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Cancer patients have been recently reassured by medical experts that family history does not influence cancer recovery, new study finds. The reassurance comes after doctors have compared cancer reoccurrence rates in female patients with and without family history.
Female patients diagnosed with breast cancer are constantly encouraged by doctors to use all possible treatments to fight against the disease or to recover from the medical intervention. Recent scientific findings come to strengthen this believe even though it was long believed that patients with family history have weaker chances of recovery.
Professors at the University of Southampton in Britain are well-aware that family heredity plays a crucial role for cancer patients as there are increased chances for the disease to reappear after the medical intervention. They were, nevertheless interested in determining whether family history also influences the effectiveness of the cancer treatment or not.
For that matter, the team of researchers have gathered a group of 2,850 female patients aged below 40, who have been previously diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer. The participants were divided into two categories, depending on the history of their families. Thus, female patients, whose first-degree relatives also suffered from cancer were included in one category, whereas those without family antecedents formed the second category.
The medical history of each and every participant was then, followed for the past 15 years. Medical scientists wanted to keep a track of the personal characteristics of the female patients, their tumor characteristics and the recovery treatments they have followed. This information was coupled with data related to the periods in which the patients did not suffer from the disease and to their family history.
The analysis has revealed that there is no real connection between cancer recovery and family history. Inherited genes might say whether a patient is likely to suffer from a form of cancer or not, but it does not have a direct influence on the effectiveness of the treatment.
Ramsey Cutress, associate professor in breast surgery at the University of Southampton further stated that female patients should not worry that their results will be worse. On the contrary, the study has shown that many women participants have had very good results during the medical treatment, in spite of their family history.
New experiments and tests are carried out each day to find possible cures for cancer. Physicians have now managed to determine which genes are more vulnerable to chemotherapy and which require a different type of treatment.
The recent discoveries of the study performed by the team of researchers at the University of Southampton in Britain will be published in the British Journal of Surgery.
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Scientists have been going through many efforts to determine the best method to do away with unwanted space garbage. Their efforts have finally paid off as a new laser cannon satellite will be added to the International Space Station to dispose space junk in the following years.
Scientists at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, as well as the European Space Agency have developed numerous new technologies for the proper functioning of the International Space Station. In addition to the many potential dangers that the agencies are trying to eliminate is also the risk of space debris.
According to scientists at the European Space Agency, small disposed junks existing in space could hit and damage the ISS causing it to no longer work properly. For that matter recent endeavors have been carried out in order to find an effective method for the vaporization of floating man-made objects.
Toshikazu Ebisuzaki, space expert at the European Space Agency and project manager, told the press during his latest interview on Monday, that scientists are working to create a laser cannon, which will later on, be integrated on ISS. The laser satellite was initially conceived to monitor the ultraviolet emissions, but Ebisuzaki thinks the cannon could have multiple other uses.
The laser satellite cannon will also be programmed to identify 1-cm small debris in space and vaporize it using laser rays. The junk materials will be directed towards the Earth’s atmosphere where they will eventually caught fire. The solution has been long sought by scientists as even the smallest particles from disintegrated rockets and spaceships can pose great risks for the International Space Station.
Many tests are now being carried out in order to identify possible flaws that the laser cannon might present. Moreover, additional features might later on be added, depending on the new ideas that might come to experts’ minds. Nevertheless, the team at the European Space Agency plans to install the laser cannon satellite on ISS by 2017.
Similar projects have been developed in the past by the renowned aeronautics administrations. Researchers have had other ideas related to outer space garbage disposal, but the most recent one involves a space junk net that could fish larger objects.
Junk fishing nets could, thus, get thrown into the outer space to capture flying garbage that is larger in volume and size. The trajectory of the flying net, however, is very hard to determine as a result of the lack of gravitation; therefore, many more tests will have to be performed in order to correctly determine how these nets will eventually function.
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In recent years, women with dense breast tissue have been encouraged more and more to make more frequent check-ups than just the annual mammogram, as studies revealed dense breast tissue represent an increased chance of developing breast cancer.
However, a new study shows that not only is the risk of cancer not at high as previously believed, but also that it does not apply to all women who have dense breasts.
The results were published in the Annals of Internal Medicine by Dr. Karla Kerlikowske, professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco in collaboration with her colleagues.
More than 365,000 women aged 40 to 74 years old, participated in the study, totaling to roughly 831,000 mammograms. The follow-up period of 12 months after the initial mammogram revealed information about how many women had developed breast cancer.
Results showed that breast density is not an accurate indicator of higher risk of cancer. Researchers tried various models and criteria in order to predict which women had a risk of developing cancer; they included either just breast density on its own, or in combination with other factors – family history of breast cancer, age, race, and recent breast biopsy.
Determining if a woman has dense breast tissue is done based on a mammogram, but approximately 42 percent of the dense-breasted women participating in the study appeared to have very low risk of developing cancer.
Furthermore, more screenings and having an ultrasound or an MRI proved to be helpful only in 24 percent of the cases with higher risk. Therefore, only 12 percent of women who get mammograms – including patients with dense breast tissue – would be in need of getting further screening.
The gap between these results and the current practice is huge, as all women who have dense breasts are urged to receive more frequent screenings. There are currently 22 states commissioning physicians to ask patients with dense tissue breasts to consider additional screening.
Even though a federal law on the same issue is undergoing reviews at the time, people are wondering if it is indeed necessary, since only a few insurers are willing to cover the extra screening.
Almost half of the women who get mammograms are told they have dense breast tissue, and according to Kerlikowske, requiring extra screenings for so many is neither cost-effective nor realistic.
As the study proved, it’s not impossible to identify the cases of dense breasts that are more likely to develop cancer; doctors need to be taking all risk factors under consideration, such as age and medical family history.
Image Source: HVNN
LG’s new G4 smartphone is now available worldwide, according to a recent press release issued by the famous smartphone company. The new G4 model has successfully made its entrance on the market judging by the attention it has managed to grab within the few months since it has been officially announced.
LG fans have many reasons to be happy as the much-awaited G4 smartphone is finally here. The model was launched during a recent public event held in New York with the participation of tech analysts, Samsung developers and many other well-renowned and reputed mobile companies.
The first city where LG’s new smartphone will most likely be available is Hong Kong. Marketing specialists at LG have chosen this particular city as sales figures were impressively high in this region.
The G4 smartphone will later on be available in other cities and countries. Developers have further disclosed that customers will soon be able to purchase the phone at their official stores in Europe, North America, CIS, Southeast Asia, Middle East/Africa and South/Central America. Based on their calculations, LG’s new G4 smartphone will most likely appear in these regions by the end of the upcoming month.
As expected, developers have done their best to provide improved features for their customers. The G4 model is thus featuring a “quantum” display which enables better color reproduction. The camera is noteworthy, as well, as the bigger sensor captures better images.
The device features the well-known 64-bit hexacore CPU Snapdragon 808 processor which has been provided on other LG models as well. The phone continues to rely heavily on Google’s services; therefore many of the apps provided by the search giant have already been encompassed on the smartphone. G4 also uses Google’s Chrome as its default browser and Chrome cast for support.
LG’s new G4 smartphone may be available worldwide, but the company stated that prices will vary from one region to another. Estimates have shown that the device will be available in the United States in exchange for $600 without a mobile service contract, whereas the G4 will only cost $200 for customers who are willing to sign carrier deals.
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The Cupertino based tech giant Apple Inc. has a strong rival in the other tech company whose relevance reached world wide level, Google Inc. While the tech company run by Tim Cook as chief executive officer has an advantage in the field of smartphone and tablets, the company that over the years has become far more than a search engine, the Mountain View based Google Inc. offers a better mapping system. So Apple Inc. struggles to level the balance when it comes to mapping and takes another important step toward reaching the quality of Google Maps. The most recent info in connection to this matter says that Apple purchases a navigation company to better the mapping service that they offer to their customers.
The Silicon Valley tech giant Apple Inc. has acquired an important name on the list of navigation companies throughout the world. The latest acquisition made by Apple Inc. is the Coherent Navigation company. Apple Inc. sees this action as a necessary one if they want to offer a proper mapping service that would attract more customers.
Coherent Navigation is a Bay Area firm and the main object of their activity is the high quality mapping, through excellent performance GPS monitoring and fine technologies regarding navigation.
The newest acquisition by Apple Inc. has been firstly announced by MacRumors earlier today. A spokesperson talkin on behalf of Apple Inc. has later confirmed that the rumors are true and that indeed Coherent Navigation is now part of the Cupertino based tech giant.
It has already become a tradition for Apple Inc. to buy smaller tech companies in order to integrate their technologies into their gigantic system. It is a great strategy used by numerous big names in the world of tech, still the officials representing Apple Inc.`s interests have declined to comment further on the plans that the company has with the newest member of the club.
According to the statements in MacRumors, several people previously working for Coherent Navigation have been recently hired by Apple Inc. It has not yet been made clear if Apple Inc. has targeted the talent of the Coherent Navigation employees or they rather want the company`s technologies, but it is clear by now that Coherent Navigation joins a rich group of smaller companies which have been purchased by Apple Inc. in order to better their mapping service.
Locationary, Emabark, Hop Stop and Broadmap have also been bought by the Cupertino based giant.
Image Source: Mashable
Orexigen obesity drug trial ended with misleading early results, new press release informs.
Two months ago, Orexigen Therapeutics released information on one of its drugs, Contrave, saying that company funded clinical trials showed patients’ risk of suffering from strokes, heart attacks and other cardiovascular diseases decreased with 41 percent.
Following Orexigen’s announcement, the company’s stocks skyrocketed and Contrave sales saw a significant increase in monthly sales.
However, academic researchers supervising the development of the study said that Orexigen broke the conditions of the agreement, which stipulated the company could not disclose early results – not even to the company’s staff.
Apparently, besides sharing confidential data, Orexigen also altered the information; in reality, volunteers in the trial had been monitored for longer periods than previously stated, and even so, the results showed little to no improvement in lowering heart disease risks for any of the patients.
The researchers overseeing the trials felt compelled to order the study to be terminated because of the company’s breach of trust. Scientists disclosed the accurate and updated results of the drug tests in a press announcement from Cleveland Clinic.
According to Dr. Steven Nissen, head of the cardiovascular medicine department at the Cleveland Clinic and the leader of the trial’s board, the misleading information that was released to the public had to be corrected, as many patients and providers act according to the drug’s alleged effects.
Dr. Nissen added that Orexigen is guilty of breaching the ethical and proper ways of handling data access that was stipulated in the study’s agreement. The main reason why the research could not be prolonged is the way-too-early release of incomplete results.
Even if the results would eventually prove the drug is indeed reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, the researchers would hardly find any patients willing to continue participating in the trial. Who wants to risk being given a placebo in a clinical experiment when the drug is apparently working and already on the market?
On Tuesday, Orexigen commented on the early termination of the trial, saying that the company had already had plans of ending it back in December.
The announcement continued denying it had released misleading information to the public, pointing to the fact that those results were clearly only preliminary, and that it was waiting for trials to offer the confirmation on the cardiovascular benefits of Contrave.
Image Source: Health Care Global
A recent medical study shows that fruits, natural brain and memory enhancers, are the worst enemies of diets causing people to crave for sweets and junk food.
Researchers at the Kreck School of Medicine wanted to determine the exact extent to which dieters may or may not be helped by fruit consumption. They have, therefore, interviewed 24 participants and asked them to take part in several activities.
Participants were asked to eat a certain amount of fructose and glucose-based products, so scientists could determine their effects on those people, who want to lose weight.
Volunteers were, then, asked to take a look at pictures of edible and non-edible products.
The majority of the participants have declared that they felt hungrier after consuming fruits, instead of feeling satiated.
Not even fruit salads help counteract munchies, which are, most of the times, responsible for late-night dinners and appetizers.
At the end of the test, volunteers were asked to choose between high-calorie foods and a monthly salary. The majority of them have chosen to give up all their material possessions in exchange for a regular portion of junk food.
Scientists at the Kreck School of Medicine have explained the findings of the test through the effects of fructose consumption.
According to them, people who ingest higher amounts of fructose are more inclined to eat junk food because fructose does not favor insulin production.
Glucose-based products, on the other hand, are filling because they assure the daily amount of insulin the body needs to avoid hunger.
The study’s findings were further confirmed by brain scans and blood tests.
The images proved that there is a direct link between fructose or glucose consumption and brain functions, hormones and “hunger response”. According to the brain scans, fructose activates the brain parts that are responsible for the “attention and reward process”.
Scientists did not intend to prevent people from consuming fruits, just to warn them that quantity matters.
They have concluded the study by adding that people should take into consideration just how much fructose or glucose their bodies need to have the best diet results.
As a general guidance, consumers should limit their fructose amount to about 50 grams per day. A glass of natural juice at breakfast contains sufficient fructose for an entire day.
In regards to glucose consumption, scientists have maintained their position against carbohydrates and junk food. Nevertheless, they have all acknowledged that a slice of bread at lunch can help prevent the irritating hunger sensation.
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Since their release back in 2011, emojis have become huge in the written language used online these days. And to fully grasp the extent of their popularity, it is enough to mention that emojis are the new “LOL” of social-media.
That’s right! The adorable small faces have become even more than internet slang. Goodbye “lol” and “xoxo”, hello laughing/crying face and all colored hearts! People have given a very warm welcome to emojis, but their success is unbelievable.
“The vocabulary of Instagram is shifting…with a decline in Internet slang corresponding to rise in the usage of emoji,” writes Thomas Dimson, software engineer at Instagram.
According to the research conducted by Instagram, the Facebook app that included emojis in its keyboard since 2011, people are using at least one or two emojis per comment or description. Moreover, comments formed entirely of emojis are not a rare sight on Instagram anymore.
This actually became the focus of even more research conducted by the company, that wants to fully grasp the meaning that their users have given to the emojis. While it is obvious what the laughing faces are associated with, it is not always clear what the meaning of a monkey face or an emoji similar to Vincent Van Gogh’s “The Scream” is exactly. These findings of this research will be published soon.
The range of the emoji keyboard is ever-growing, making it available for Instagram users to express their thoughts in an illustration filled way . You can find everything from an extensive range of food and drinks, to pretty much any animal that you can think of, to shoes, clothes and various accessories, to sports and even holiday symbols.
The success of the emojis is built on the amazing foundation laid by once famous Yahoo Messenger emoticons. These were only small yellow faces that expressed different emotions. Among them are the widely discussed smiley face, the ever-friendly big grin emoticon and extremely cool looking smug face.
Since the age of Yahoo Messenger, the diversity of emoticons has grown tremendously and if this keeps up, Instagram users will never have to use letters ever again. Even connective words can be substituted with enough wit by all the arrows and lines available.
According to Instagram itself, Finland is the biggest emoji lover, with 63 percent of Finnish posts containing emojis. It is followd by Francw, with 50 percent and the UK with 48 percent. Tanzania, on the other hand is at the opposing end, with a mere 20 percent.
This is why Instagram and Facebook have made emoji hashtags available and they actually promise to document their entire journey up to this point in the near future. This means that emojis can now actually be the face of online campaigns, since this was an obvious trend observed in recent written social-media. For instance, a red heart followed by a green one is the a symbol of St. Patrick’s Day and next year it can be included in a hashtag campaign.
Things have come a long way since the days where people thought that an emoticon would add weight to their comments. Now you cannot survive in the colorful buzzing life of social media without knowing your emojis. Not only are they a valuable part of all trending comments and descriptions, but emojis are the new “LOL” of social media, and underestimating them is no longer an option!
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The world is changing every day and there is evidence of this everywhere in the world. People show progress in overcoming corrosive ideas that have done tremendous damage in the past and this shows true promise for a more united more tolerant world to come. As an example of such a progress, Smith College will welcome transgender students starting next fall.
Iconic women’s university, Smith, is pioneering the extension of the concept of “woman” by changing its policy that previously did not allow transgender students to attend their courses. This is proof that there is hope for this yet poorly understood part of the LGBT community.
Numerous campaigns have been conducted to raise awareness towards the gay and bisexual community. Gay characters in films and TV series are now far from being rarities, because people have gotten used to them and have come to consider them part of their own community. Transgenders however, are not at that point just yet.
While the same method is being employed towards getting people to worm up to the idea of transgenders being a part of normality, there is still a lot of work ahead of this cause before it reaches its goals. Films like 2005’s “Transamerica” and TV-series like 2014’s “Transparent” have showed great success among both critics and audiences alike, paving the way to better integrating these people in the community and putting an end to the discrimination that they face daily.
Recently, famous Olympian Bruce Jenner has made it public that he is a transgender and that he is on his way to becoming a she. Despite the fact that this came as a shock to the audience, people have proven to be supportive of his decision and moreover, they are following Jenner in every step of his transformation.
This is actually a very effective symbol for the transgender community, because, again, it gets people acquainted to the challenges that these people must overcome in order to be at peace with themselves.
And now, alongside Bruce Jenner’s journey, transgenders are gaining ground by being considered as true women by Smith College, an icon of women’s identity. “The board’s decision affirms Smith’s unwavering mission and identity as a women’s college, our commitment to representing the diversity of women’s lived experiences, and the college’s exceptional role in the advancement of women worldwide”, was included in a statement made by Smith College.
“In the years since Smith’s founding, concepts of female identity have evolved. Smith alumnae have been leaders in the movement to afford women greater freedoms of aspiration and self-expression.”, was also pointed out in the statement, thus making Smith an official hero of transgenders everywhere.
The fact that Smith College will welcome transgender students is a very important step for the LGBT community and an enormous strike against the worldwide discrimination of this minority. Hopefully, other women’s institutions will follow their example and contribute to the mission of making transgenders a common sight in the eyes of the world.
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