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Health News Archive - July 11, 2005

Methamphetamine, the drug of choice for long-distance truckers and college students pulling all-nighters, appears to do a similar trick for fruit flies, too. This finding is one of several in a new study that demonstrates a critical role for the neurotransmitter dopamine in the modulation of sleep, wake, and arousal states.

Reporting in the July 18 issue of The Journal of Experimental Medicine, a group of scientists in Wurzburg, Germany show that the lack of a blood clotting protein may protect against clogged arteries with no risk of excessive bleeding.

Contrary to what you might think, most people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are not depressed. They are also not more likely to get depressed as the end of life approaches, and they are not more likely to be depressed if they want to die or hasten their own death. Two new studies, published in the July 12 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology, provide the evidence to contradict these assumptions.

Four of five newborn infants who experience a stroke around the time of birth will develop neurologic disorders such as cerebral palsy, epilepsy, or language delay, according to a study published online July 11, 2005, in the Annals of Neurology.

UCLA investigators found large gaps and marked variation in U.S. hospitals' heart failure treatment based on adherence to four standard quality measures. The study points to the need for hospitals to establish education programs and systems to improve quality of care for this patient population.

Nearly two million Americans are treated for eye injuries per year, with males experiencing twice the rate of injury than that of females, according to a study in the July issue of Archives of Ophthalmology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

The use of statins and other lipid-lowering agents by older adults was not associated with a reduced risk of Alzheimer's disease or other types of dementia, according to a study in the July issue of Archives of Neurology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Although there are no differences in clinical outcome, the in-hospital cost of coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG) in the U.S. is 82.5 percent higher in the U.S. than in Canada, according to a study in the July 11 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

The size of a particular structure in the brain may be associated with the ability to recover emotionally from traumatic events. A new study by researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) finds that an area called the ventromedial prefrontal cortex is thicker in volunteers who appear better able to modify their anxious response to memories of discomfort.

Do you have a rare blood group or are you concerned about contracting a disease such as HIV from a blood transfusion? The first ever European Blood Substitutes project ('EuroBloodSubstitutes') is designing molecules which will be able to replace the need for blood during transfusions in the future.

Word of the Day
megalophonous
  • Having a loud voice; vociferous; clamorous.
  • Of grand or imposing sound.
The word 'megalophonous' comes from Greek roots meaning 'big' and 'sound'.