August 2016

Otulipenia is a rare and sometimes fatal inflammatory disease that causes fever, skin rashes, diarrhea and joint pain in young children. The NIH research team discovered that it is caused by a genetic defect that interrupts the processing of an important immune system protein, ubiquitin, resulting in the inflammation. It was determined that helpful medications for this condition are TNF inhibitors which are used to treat other chronic inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. The malfunction of this protein had not previously been linked to immune disorders and the discovery opens new therapy options for other inflammatory diseases. Click here to learn more.

Vigilance is warranted concerning estrogens found in our foods as they could affect blood levels and increase the risk for some cancers. However, recent studies indicate that the naturally occurring estrogens in cow’s milk are in far too low concentrations to exert any biological effect on adult consumers and do not pose a risk to reproductive health. Click here to learn more

Advances in technology accelerates the human potential in many and exciting ways. We view these changes as “progress” and have allowed our gadgets and devices to integrate into necessary components of our daily lives. However, these changes are alarming because of the commensurate devastation they have caused to our health. Whether at work or at home, commuting or socializing, we are sitting more and more and more. The American Heart Association is warning that this sedentary lifestyle can have a direct impact on our cardiovascular health as well as other related health issues. The concern is especially daunting because studies are revealing that routine exercise does not alleviate the damage. Click here to learn more.

Dust-sized wireless and batteryless sensors have been engineered for implantation by a University of California, Berkley team.  Powered by ultrasound, these sensors are able to monitor electrical signals from muscles and nerves deep within the body. The hope is to convert this technology to therapeutic applications where muscle and nerve stimulation can also be applied. These devices could then replace electrodes in providing therapies for central nervous system disorders like epilepsy and may eventually be engineered to monitor hormones and oxygen levels as well. The procedure is minimally invasive and the technology lends itself to multiple implants for simultaneous applications. Click here to learn more.