Monthly Archives: July 2016

Corticosterone in chameleon claws

Steroid hormones act throughout life to regulate numerous physiological processes such as development, reproduction and immunity as well as behavioral responses, e.g. stress response and risk taking. Steroid levels vary rapidly according to varying conditions and stressors.

Is personality related to biological stress reactivity?

In his influential biopsychological theory of personality, Hans J. Eysenck proposed in 1967 that there was a biological basis to personality. He described two main personality traits which could be measured on a continuum. Individuals scoring high

Is isoniazid so safe to use in tuberculosis preventive therapy?

Tuberculosis (TB) has emerged as a major warning to global public health as thirty three percent of the world population is considered to be infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB)  infection.  Further, multi-drug-resistant strains of MTB in association

A new picture for an old biology, HDL as you’ve never seen it before

High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is known as good cholesterol since high levels of HDL are associated with lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Unlike its counterpart, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), whose actions are combatted by statins, clinical outcome trials for

The declining influence of family background on educational attainment in Australia

Siblings have much more similar educational outcomes than non-related individuals do of the same age. The similarity between siblings’ outcomes compared to individuals from different families provides a measure of the total impact of family background. Family

How can we know patients are involved in treatment decision-making?

Nowadays, patients desire a more active role in decision-making about their healthcare. Besides, the patients’ preference may differ from what their doctor advises. Shared decision-making (SDM) is the process in which both doctors and patients decide together

Epithelial wound healing: a matter of life and death

Wound healing is a crucial property for the maintenance of the structural and functional integrity of an individual. In the whole organism it usually requires the participation of many cellular types. The fundamental aspects of wound healing,

Throwing a wrench into the hepatitis C replication machine

As an essential step in its replication cycle, the human hepatitis C virus (HCV) must make a copy of its RNA genome. The major player in this process is the NS5B polymerase, a molecular machine which uses

Vaccine research on Africa’s cattle-killing East Coast fever: A short (somewhat potted but handsomely illustrated) history

Tremendous research progress has been made over the last ten years to better control the deadly African disease of cattle known as East Coast fever. This disease is caused by a single-celled organism, Theileria parva, which is carried

Influence of DAOA and RGS4 genes on the risk for psychotic disorders

Schizophrenia-spectrum disorders (SSD), including schizophrenia and other psychosis related conditions, affect about 3.5% of the population worldwide. Although there are quantitative differences, similar clinical and cognitive characteristics can be present across all the diagnoses of the spectrum.

Regular physical activity helps with the regulation of appetite and control of food intake

It is widely known that regular physical activity is a vital component of a healthy lifestyle and weight management. Some studies suggest that regular physical activity is also beneficial for controlling appetite; however, the research has never

Assuming defeat, thwarting the feat: Defeatist beliefs, negative symptoms, and everyday functioning in people with schizophrenia

Imagine wanting to invite a friend for coffee. You might be thinking about what coffee shop to go to or what outfit to wear. But what if instead of planning the details of the coffee date you

ARTS (Aspiration-Retriever Technique for Stroke): A novel method for stroke treatment

Ischemic stroke is not only one of the worldwide leading causes of disability and mortality but is also a significant burden on health systems. Actually the standard treatment for the acute event is based on a clot

Long learning curve for surgeons operating on esophageal cancer

Esophageal cancer is the eighth most frequently diagnosed cancer worldwide and the sixth most common cause of cancer-related death. The curatively intended treatment usually includes extensive surgery with removal of most of the esophagus (food-pipe) and the

Astrocytes, friend or foe in the brain

Glia, the “support” cells of the nervous system, are vital to the production, maintenance, and repair of one of the greatest triumphs of vertebrate evolution: the myelin sheath. For nerves to receive and conduct signals, as wells

The experts’ perspectives on domains, definitions and measurements of health literacy in chronic disease management

Health literacy is defined as a person’s skills to navigate and access health information and understand and interpret the information to make informed decisions about their health. Understanding what health literacy is and the impact it has

Evaluating the effectiveness of marine debris policies at a local level

Slow to break down and nearly indestructible, plastics can last persist in the environment for thousands of years. Even more astounding is the amount of plastic that annually ends up in our ocean – an estimated 8

Do individuals with hearing loss change their driving habits over time?

Driving helps us carry out our everyday activities, stay socially connected, and maintain our independence and well-being as we age.   However, age-related cognitive and sensory changes may negatively impact an individual’s ability to drive.  The best predictor

Laser tool magnifies bacterial genotypic alteration as a colony phenotype

Gene manipulation tools are routinely used to create genetically engineered bacteria to understand the function of a gene or its role in pathogenesis in case of an infective microbe. Genetic engineering and manipulation of genes have been

Evaluation of a Farm-to-Preschool and Families program

Despite recent decreases among preschool-aged children, child obesity is still an important public health concern. Community-based programs that focus on increasing fruit and vegetable intake is one way to address this issue. Although there is a strong