Archive for April, 2008

Menstrual Blood May Repair Heart Damage : Researchers

Saturday, April 26th, 2008

A new study by Japanese scientists shows that cells from menstrual blood may be useful in repairing heart damage.

Researchers obtained menstrual blood from nine women and focused their study on a kind of cell that can act like stem cells.

About 20 percent of these cells began beating spontaneously about three days after being put together in vitro with cells from the hearts of rats, the study says. The cells later formed sheet-like heart muscle tissue.

The success rate is 100 times higher than the 0.2 to 0.3 percent for stem cells taken from human bone marrow, researcher Shunichiro Miyoshi, a cardiologist at Keio University’s school of medicine, told French news agency AFP.

Experiments showed that rats who had suffered heart attacks improved after they received the menstrual blood cells, according to the study, which appeared in the medical journal Stem Cell.

Source : FOXNews

Treatment Optiions for Dementia

Tuesday, April 15th, 2008

Doctors have not found out any cure for the disease.They sometimes prescribe drugs to improve symptoms that often accompany Alzheimer’s disease.The treatment available can be classified as below:-
Cholinesterase inhibitors : This group of medications — which includes donepezil (Aricept), rivastigmine (Exelon) and galantamine (Reminyl) — works by improving the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain.Donepezil also appears to delay the onset of Alzheimer’s for about a year in people who have mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Cholinesterase inhibitors work out in some cases. As many as half the people who take these drugs show no improvement. Other people may choose to stop taking the drugs because of the side effects, which include diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.
Memantine (Namenda) : The first drug approved to treat moderate to severe stages of Alzheimer’s, memantine (Namenda), protects brain cells from damage caused by the chemical messenger glutamate. It sometimes is used in combination with a cholinesterase inhibitor. Memantine’s most common side effect is dizziness, although it also appears to increase agitation and delusional behavior in some people.

What are Symptoms of Dementia

Monday, April 7th, 2008

The most commonly known symptom of Alzheimer’s disease is confusion. This behaviour in particular causes us to become ‘estranged’ from others and to be unpredictable in our interactions. Confusion can also occur ‘acutly’ i.e. suddenly and limited in time. The common symptoms that are seen in pateints are forgetfulness, misplacing things, difficulty in remembering names etc.People with Alzheimer suffer mainly from impaired memory and orientation, limitations of concentration, planning and judgement, personality changes and later also perceptual, speech and walking disorders; in the final stage, various other body functions such as swallowing and the excretion process are also affected. During the course of Alzheimer’s disease, patients lose their independence in managing everyday life. There are effects on perception and social relationships; people become more and more dependent on care.

Causes of Dementia

Tuesday, April 1st, 2008

Causes The cause of Dementia is still unknown. There probably is not one single cause, but several factors that affect each person differently. The number of people with the disease doubles every 5 years beyond age 65.Family history is another risk factor. The more common form of Demantia is known as late-onset. It occurs later in life, and no obvious inheritance pattern is seen in most families. However, several risk factor genes may interact with each other and with non-genetic factors to cause the disease. The only risk factor gene identified so far for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease is a gene that makes one form of a protein called apolipoprotein E (ApoE). Everyone has ApoE, which helps carry cholesterol in the blood. Only about 15 percent of people have the form that increases the risk of AD. It is likely that other genes also may increase the risk of AD or protect against AD, but they remain to be discovered.