Using computational tools inspired by financial math models developed to predict changes in stock prices, researchers were able to accurately predict how different properties of the HIV surface protein (Env) evolved in the population of Iowa over the course of 30 years. The ability to predict such changes by testing a small number of patients could potentially allow tailoring of vaccines to the specific forms of HIV present in different populations worldwide.
Source: University of Iowa
Night owls are more sedentary and feel that they have a harder time maintaining an exercise schedule, research concludes. People who characterized themselves as night owls reported more sitting time and more perceived barriers to exercise, including not having enough time for exercise and being unable to stick to an exercise schedule regardless of what time they actually went to bed or woke up.
Engineering an immune cell to recognize and kill a cancer cell is the key to chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy, but modified immune cells also have the potential to cause problems for patients. One such complication, cytokine release syndrome, is an overreaction of the immune system that can cause symptoms as mild as a fever and as serious as organ dysfunction and death. Typical immunotherapies work by harnessing the power of the immune system. In CAR T-cell therapy, for example, patients receive a transfusion of their own T cells that have been modified to recognize a specific protein on the surface of cancer cells and then destroy the cancer.
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Bipolar disorder is a serious brain illness. It is also called manic-depressive illness or manic depression. Children with bipolar disorder go through unusual mood changes. Sometimes they feel very happy or “up,” and are much more energetic and active than usual, or than other kids their age. This is called a manic episode. Sometimes children with bipolar disorder feel very sad and “down,” and are much less active than usual. This is called depression or a depressive episode.
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Exercise is a common prescription for insomnia. But hitting the treadmill one day won’t translate into better sleep that night, reports new research. It takes four months so people shouldn’t get discouraged. This is the first long-term study to show aerobic exercise during the day does not result in improved sleep that night when people have insomnia. The study also showed people exercise less following nights with worse sleep.
Source: Northwestern University
Former Soviet Union Immigrant Illicit Drug Use in Israel (1989-2010): Implications for Prevention and Treatment Policy
Since 1989, former Soviet Union (FSU) emigration policy allowed millions of people to exit to western countries. Method: This study examined FSU immigrants and their impact on Israeli illicit drug problems reported by police using a method of exploration and estimation suggested by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Result: Findings show the country’s illicit drug related police reports from 1989 to 2010 largely attributed to FSU immigrants. Conclusion: Many FSU immigrants have contributed to the country’s growth and development.
Our skin is covered with bacteria as part of our normal skin microbiome and typically serves as a barrier that protects us from infection and inflammation. However, when that barrier is broken, the increased exposure to certain bacteria really causes problems,” says Lloyd Miller, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of dermatology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
The bacteria Staphylococcus aureus, or S. aureus, is an important human pathogen and the most common cause of skin infections in people. Miller says, “20 to 30 percent of the U.S. population have S. aureus living on their skin or in their nose, and over time, up to 85 percent of people come into contact with it. Eczema is an inflammatory skin disease that affects 20 percent of children and about 5 percent of adults. Ninety percent of patients with eczema have exceedingly high numbers of S. aureus bacteria on their inflamed skin.”
It was previously shown by others that a rare disease called generalized pustular psoriasis (in which the skin erupts into pustules) was caused by a genetic mutation that resulted in the unrestrained activity of a protein normally produced in our skin, called IL-36. This, says Miller, was a clue that IL-36 might have something to do with how bacteria on the skin surface induce inflammation. So they set out to test this idea in mice. They soaked a small gauze pad with S. aureus and applied it to the back skin of normal mice and those that had been genetically engineered to lack the receptor for IL-36 that triggers inflammatory responses. Miller’s team found the normal mice developed scaly and inflamed skin, and the genetically engineered mice lacking IL-36 activity had almost no skin inflammation.
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