Archive | November, 2013

Gisele Bundchen & Daft Punk Front The Wall Street Journal Magazine November 2013

7 Nov

Continuing to enjoy the success of their big comeback, Daft Punk fronted the November 2013 issue of The Wall Street Journal Magazine.

The “Get Lucky” duo teamed up supermodel Gisele Bundchen and rocked a sexy pose with celebrity photographer Terry Richardson.

Sharing her excitement with her followers, the 33-year-old supermodel took to her Instagram account and posted the cover, writing, “New cover of @wsjmag with @DaftPunk by @terryrichardsonstudio. Nova capa para @wsjmag com @DaftPunk for @terryrichardsonstudio.”

In addition, Versace shared the cover, in which Gisele dons its collection, and wrote, “Gisele Bundchen is stunning in Atelier Vesrace on the November cover of WSJ Magazine! @WSJMag @giseleofficial”

Source: http://celebrity-gossip.net/gisele-bundchen/gisele-bundchen-daft-punk-front-wall-street-journal-magazine-november-2013-issue-956
Tags: River Phoenix   Scott Carpenter   diana nyad  

Earliest marker for autism found in young infants

7 Nov

Earliest marker for autism found in young infants

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Contact: Keri Chiodo
NIMHPress@nih.gov
301-443-4536
NIH/National Institute of Mental Health

NIH-funded study finds attention to others’ eyes declines in 2 to 6-month-old infants later diagnosed with autism

Eye contact during early infancy may be a key to early identification of autism, according to a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health. Published this week in the journal Nature, the study reveals the earliest sign of developing autism ever observeda steady decline in attention to others’ eyes within the first two to six months of life.

“Autism isn’t usually diagnosed until after age 2, when delays in a child’s social behavior and language skills become apparent. This study shows that children exhibit clear signs of autism at a much younger age,” said Thomas R. Insel, M.D., director of NIMH. “The sooner we are able to identify early markers for autism, the more effective our treatment interventions can be.”

Typically developing children begin to focus on human faces within the first few hours of life, and they learn to pick up social cues by paying special attention to other people’s eyes. Children with autism, however, do not exhibit this sort of interest in eye-looking. In fact, a lack of eye contact is one of the diagnostic features of the disorder.

To find out how this deficit in eye-looking emerges in children with autism, Warren Jones, Ph.D., and Ami Klin, Ph.D., of the Marcus Autism Center, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and Emory University School of Medicine followed infants from birth to age 3. The infants were divided into two groups, based on their risk for developing an autism spectrum disorder. Those in the high risk group had an older sibling already diagnosed with autism; those in the low risk group did not.

Jones and Klin used eye-tracking equipment to measure each child’s eye movements as they watched video scenes of a caregiver. The researchers calculated the percentage of time each child fixated on the caregiver’s eyes, mouth, and body, as well as the non-human spaces in the images. Children were tested at 10 different times between 2 and 24 months of age.

By age 3, some of the childrennearly all from the high risk grouphad received a clinical diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder. The researchers then reviewed the eye-tracking data to determine what factors differed between those children who received an autism diagnosis and those who did not.

“In infants later diagnosed with autism, we see a steady decline in how much they look at mom’s eyes,” said Jones. This drop in eye-looking began between two and six months and continued throughout the course of the study. By 24 months, the children later diagnosed with autism focused on the caregiver’s eyes only about half as long as did their typically developing counterparts.

This decline in attention to others’ eyes was somewhat surprising to the researchers. In opposition to a long-standing theory in the fieldthat social behaviors are entirely absent in children with autismthese results suggest that social engagement skills are intact shortly after birth in children with autism. If clinicians can identify this sort of marker for autism in a young infant, interventions may be better able to keep the child’s social development on track.

“This insight, the preservation of some early eye-looking, is important,” explained Jones. “In the future, if we were able to use similar technologies to identify early signs of social disability, we could then consider interventions to build on that early eye-looking and help reduce some of the associated disabilities that often accompany autism.”

The next step for Jones and Klin is to translate this finding into a viable tool for use in the clinic. With support from the NIH Autism Centers of Excellence program, the research team has already started to extend this research by enrolling many more babies and their families into related long-term studies. They also plan to examine additional markers for autism in infancy in order to give clinicians more tools for the early identification and treatment of autism.

###

Reference: Jones W, Klin A. Attention to eyes is present but in decline in 2-6-month-old infants later diagnosed with autism. Nature, Nov. 6, 2013.

Grant: R01MH083727

About the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): The mission of the NIMH is to transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and care. For more information, visit http://www.nimh.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.



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Earliest marker for autism found in young infants

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PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

6-Nov-2013

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Contact: Keri Chiodo
NIMHPress@nih.gov
301-443-4536
NIH/National Institute of Mental Health

NIH-funded study finds attention to others’ eyes declines in 2 to 6-month-old infants later diagnosed with autism

Eye contact during early infancy may be a key to early identification of autism, according to a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of the National Institutes of Health. Published this week in the journal Nature, the study reveals the earliest sign of developing autism ever observeda steady decline in attention to others’ eyes within the first two to six months of life.

“Autism isn’t usually diagnosed until after age 2, when delays in a child’s social behavior and language skills become apparent. This study shows that children exhibit clear signs of autism at a much younger age,” said Thomas R. Insel, M.D., director of NIMH. “The sooner we are able to identify early markers for autism, the more effective our treatment interventions can be.”

Typically developing children begin to focus on human faces within the first few hours of life, and they learn to pick up social cues by paying special attention to other people’s eyes. Children with autism, however, do not exhibit this sort of interest in eye-looking. In fact, a lack of eye contact is one of the diagnostic features of the disorder.

To find out how this deficit in eye-looking emerges in children with autism, Warren Jones, Ph.D., and Ami Klin, Ph.D., of the Marcus Autism Center, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and Emory University School of Medicine followed infants from birth to age 3. The infants were divided into two groups, based on their risk for developing an autism spectrum disorder. Those in the high risk group had an older sibling already diagnosed with autism; those in the low risk group did not.

Jones and Klin used eye-tracking equipment to measure each child’s eye movements as they watched video scenes of a caregiver. The researchers calculated the percentage of time each child fixated on the caregiver’s eyes, mouth, and body, as well as the non-human spaces in the images. Children were tested at 10 different times between 2 and 24 months of age.

By age 3, some of the childrennearly all from the high risk grouphad received a clinical diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder. The researchers then reviewed the eye-tracking data to determine what factors differed between those children who received an autism diagnosis and those who did not.

“In infants later diagnosed with autism, we see a steady decline in how much they look at mom’s eyes,” said Jones. This drop in eye-looking began between two and six months and continued throughout the course of the study. By 24 months, the children later diagnosed with autism focused on the caregiver’s eyes only about half as long as did their typically developing counterparts.

This decline in attention to others’ eyes was somewhat surprising to the researchers. In opposition to a long-standing theory in the fieldthat social behaviors are entirely absent in children with autismthese results suggest that social engagement skills are intact shortly after birth in children with autism. If clinicians can identify this sort of marker for autism in a young infant, interventions may be better able to keep the child’s social development on track.

“This insight, the preservation of some early eye-looking, is important,” explained Jones. “In the future, if we were able to use similar technologies to identify early signs of social disability, we could then consider interventions to build on that early eye-looking and help reduce some of the associated disabilities that often accompany autism.”

The next step for Jones and Klin is to translate this finding into a viable tool for use in the clinic. With support from the NIH Autism Centers of Excellence program, the research team has already started to extend this research by enrolling many more babies and their families into related long-term studies. They also plan to examine additional markers for autism in infancy in order to give clinicians more tools for the early identification and treatment of autism.

###

Reference: Jones W, Klin A. Attention to eyes is present but in decline in 2-6-month-old infants later diagnosed with autism. Nature, Nov. 6, 2013.

Grant: R01MH083727

About the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): The mission of the NIMH is to transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and care. For more information, visit http://www.nimh.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.



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Source: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2013-11/niom-emf110613.php
Category: Halloween pictures   Jameis Winston  

Toronto mayor vows to stay on

6 Nov

TORONTO (AP) — Rob Ford said Tuesday he loves his job and will stay on as mayor of Toronto despite admitting for the first time that he smoked crack.

Ford earlier acknowledged he smoked crack “probably a year ago” when he was in a “drunken stupor,” but balked at growing pressure on him to resign.

“I was elected to do a job and that’s exactly what I’m going to continue doing,” Ford said. “On Oct. 27 of 2014, I want the people of this great city to decide whether they want Rob Ford to be their mayor.”

The allegations that the mayor of Canada’s largest city had been caught on video smoking crack surfaced in news reports in May. Ford initially insisted the video didn’t exist, sidestepped questions about whether he had ever smoked crack and rebuffed growing calls on him to step down.

The mayor was forced to backtrack after police said last week they had obtained a copy of the video in the course of a drug investigation against a friend of Ford’s.

“Yes, I have smoked crack cocaine,” Ford told reporters earlier outside his office. “There have been times when I’ve been in a drunken stupor. That’s why I want to see the tape. I want everyone in the city to see this tape. I don’t even recall there being a tape or video. I want to see the state that I was in.”

Police have said the video, which has not been released publicly, does not constitute enough evidence to charge the mayor with a crime.

Police spokesman Mark Pugush said Ford’s acknowledgement of crack use will be passed on to investigators. Several Toronto city councilors called on Ford to step down and Canada’s justice minister urged him to get help.

Ford, 44, earlier walked out of his office and asked reporters to ask him the question they first asked him in May. He then acknowledged he smoked crack but said: “Am I an addict? No. Have I tried it, probably in one of my drunken stupors a year ago.”

Municipal law makes no provision for the mayor’s forced removal from office unless he’s convicted and jailed for a criminal offense.

City Councilor Denzil Minnan-Wong, a member of Ford’s executive committee, said he would put forward a motion asking Ford to take a leave of absence.

“My first reaction was ‘Wow’,” Minnan-Wong said.

Councilor Jaye Robinson said the mayor needs to step aside and address his problems.

“We have become a laughing stock of North America, if not the world,” Robinson said.

Canada’s Justice Minister Peter MacKay said it was “a sad day for the city of Toronto.”

“As a human being, I think the mayor of Toronto needs to get help,” MacKay said.

Ford later told the Toronto Sun newspaper that he is not stepping down or taking a leave of absence.

“I feel like I got 1,000 pounds off my back,” Ford told the paper, which is sympathetic to the mayor. “I felt like I had to say it. It is what it is. I feel two inches high right now but I needed to deal with it. I am not going to quit or take a leave.”

The populist Ford has been dogged by allegations of bad behavior since becoming mayor three years ago, promising to end what he called wasteful spending at city hall. His campaign galvanized conservatives in Toronto’s outlying suburbs, where initiatives like downtown bike lanes were considered excessive and elitist.

The crack episode is not the first time Ford has been forced to admit drug use. During the campaign, Ford acknowledged after repeated denials that he was busted for marijuana possession in Florida in 1999.

Ford apologized over the weekend for excessive drinking. He said he shouldn’t have been drunk in public when he appeared at a street festival in August, calling it “pure stupidity.”

He also said he got “a little out of control” after St. Patrick’s Day in 2012, when city hall security guards said they witnessed a “very intoxicated’ Ford having trouble walking and swearing at aides.

Ford said he was “hammered” at that street festival this summer.

The mayor has also been accused of make an obscene gesture from his car and texting while driving. In 2011, Ford angered the city’s gay community by declining to attend Toronto’s gay pride parade, breaking with tradition that three previous mayors had kept up.

Earlier this year, the mayor was fired from his cherished side-job as a volunteer high school football coach after he made disparaging remarks to a TV network about parents and their kids.

On Tuesday, Ford’s brother, Doug, criticized Police Chief Bill Blair for saying he was “disappointed” in the mayor after police recovered the tape last week. Doug Ford called the chief’s comments “inappropriate” and “biased” and said Blair should step aside.

“We have the most political police chief we have ever seen,” said Doug Ford, an influential city councilor. “The police chief believes he’s the judge, the jury and the executioner.”

Blair says he responded honestly when asked about his feelings after watching the video.

The allegations about Ford smoking crack surfaced when two reporters with the Toronto Star and one from the U.S. website Gawker said they saw the video but they did not obtain a copy. Ford vilified the Toronto Star, accusing the paper of trying to take him down.

The mayor has called on the police to release the tape, but police said they are prohibited from doing so because it is evidence before the courts.

Police said the video will come out when Ford’s associate and occasional driver, Alexander Lisi, goes to trial on drug and extortion charges. Lisi is accused of threatening two alleged gang members who had been trying to sell the video to the media.

Police have said they want to talk to the mayor, but his lawyer so far has declined.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/toronto-mayor-vows-stay-215359094.html
Category: TLC Movie   elizabeth berkley   foxnews  

The Bloomberg legacy

6 Nov

NEW YORK — Mayor Michael Bloomberg was trailed by a small army of reporters as he showed up Tuesday morning at a public school on the Upper East Side of Manhattan to cast his vote in an election to determine his successor.

“Mommy, why are all those cameras here?” a boy asked, as the mayor and his entourage passed him on his way inside the polling room.

“That man is probably on the ballot,” his mother replied, not immediately recognizing the outspoken billionaire mayor who will leave office next month after three terms at City Hall.

But she wasn’t the only one. Moments later, as Bloomberg picked up his ballot, a poll worker looking to cross his name off the voter roll apologetically asked the mayor to remind her of his first name.

“Michael,” he politely said.

If Bloomberg was bothered by his sudden lack of celebrity, he didn’t show it. But it was a notable oversight in a city where Bloomberg is likely to go down in history as a transformative leader — thanks to his efforts behind popular health initiatives such as a ban on smoking in New York’s restaurants and parks and establishing hundreds of miles of bike lanes.

Yet, it was also surprising, because although Bloomberg was not on the ballot this year, the race to replace him has been almost entirely about the public’s mixed feelings about him and his record at City Hall.

Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, entered Election Day with a more than 40-point lead over his rival, Republican Joe Lhota, in part by campaigning as the anti-Bloomberg.

Among other things, de Blasio has vowed to raise taxes on the rich to fund early childhood education programs as a way to remedy income inequality in the city — which he says has increased under Bloomberg. He’s also said he will undo the city’s stop-and-frisk police tactic — a controversial measure directed overwhelmingly at black and Hispanic men. Bloomberg argues stop-and-frisk has made the city safer; de Blasio says it’s racial profiling.

De Blasio’s expected win has been viewed as a repudiation of Bloomberg’s record at City Hall — even though polls suggest that the public isn’t necessarily tired of Bloomberg’s policies, they are just tired of him.

Bloomberg never formally endorsed a candidate in the race for mayor — though in the Democratic primary he clearly favored City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, a close ally whose bid for mayor faltered partly because of her role in helping overturn voter-backed term limits that allowed Bloomberg to seek a third term.

In the last weeks before the primary, Howard Wolfson, a top aide to Bloomberg, publicly criticized de Blasio, suggesting the Democrat wanted to “undo” the city’s progress under Bloomberg and take the city back to a time when it was virtually ungovernable.

And just before the primary, Bloomberg himself spoke out — suggesting deBlasio had run a “racist” campaign by playing up his multiracial family. He also criticized his rhetoric on income inequality as nothing more than “class warfare.”

But when de Blasio won the Democratic nomination, Bloomberg stopped talking. He announced that he would not endorse in the race — perhaps not surprising since Lhota, a former aide to ex-Mayor Rudy Giuliani, had once called the mayor “an idiot,” a remark he later apologized for.

As the race wound down, Bloomberg insisted he instead would focus on ensuring a smooth transition with his eventual successor — no matter who it was. He echoed that argument Tuesday when he declined to tell reporters which candidate he voted for.

But asked about de Blasio’s criticism, Bloomberg insisted he wasn’t bothered by it.

“I’d love to tell you I listened to it, but I did not. I didn’t read most of the articles. I didn’t see most of the ads,” Bloomberg said. “And in any case, what some people say during campaigns is often not what they say later on. They say one thing for primaries and another thing for the general election and another thing afterwards. The real issue is not what they say during campaigns. The real issue is what they do when they get elected.”

Those close to Bloomberg insist the mayor is telling the truth on that point — moved in part by his admiration by previous administrations and how they have worked with successors, even in spite of political differences. They say he is looking more toward his own legacy than dwelling on debates about how people feel about him now.

“Bloomberg is not a person who looks backwards. He is not about sour grapes,” says Bill Cunningham, a former political strategist for Bloomberg who worked for the mayor during his first term at City Hall. “He understands how politics works, and his only answer to that is to look forward and work right up until the very end toward his goals. Only then, when his term ends, will he stop and look back. It is all moving forward and moving on.”

And Bloomberg has already indicated he’s thinking about life past City Hall. While he’ll continue his political activity — including a personally funded super PAC that has spent millions to boost political issues such as gun control and efforts to control climate change — Bloomberg also has said he wants to ramp up his philanthropic efforts, telling reporters he’s admired the charity efforts of former Microsoft chairman Bill Gates.

But Bloomberg clearly cares about his legacy at City Hall — repeatedly saying he hopes to go down in history as one of the city’s best mayors. Asked on Tuesday if it was “bittersweet” to vote in the first mayoral election in more than a decade that didn’t include him on the ballot, he insisted he didn’t miss it.

“Funny thing is, it never occurred to me,” Bloomberg said.

But the mayor did seem more nostalgic than usual. Bloomberg, who at times has been criticized as unemotional and distant, spent minutes shaking hands and posing for photos with his fellow voters. He also lingered for several minutes chatting up a group of mothers running a bake sale to benefit the school — discussing everything from sports to the Broadway show “Kinky Boots,” which he heartily endorsed.

“Have you seen it? You should see it,” Bloomberg declared, mentioning how much he liked singer Cyndi Lauper’s Tony-award winning score.

When the subject turned to the Yankees, the mayor seemed shocked when one of the mothers told him she’d once camped out overnight to score tickets to one of the team’s World Series games.

“You have to do it once,” she said, adding that she had admired the prime location of his seats at the games.

Bloomberg shook his head and said he won’t be so lucky in the future.

“I won’t be mayor anymore,” he said.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/michael-bloomberg-election-future-231927885.html
Tags: X Men Days Of Future Past   SAT   Common App   adrian peterson   chicago fire  

Multi-million pound grant awarded to train UK’s future scientific leaders

5 Nov

Multi-million pound grant awarded to train UK’s future scientific leaders

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Contact: Paul Teed
paul.teed@rhul.ac.uk
Royal Holloway, University of London

Royal Holloway University and eight other world-leading institutions have announced the creation of a new London NERC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), which will specialise in training the next generation of environmental scientists.

As part of a 100 million investment, revealed yesterday by the Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts, the London DTP will allow postgraduate students to use environmental sciences to tackle the challenges facing the world today.

It is one of 15 new DTPs across the UK, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), that were announced as part of NERC’s renewed commitment to postgraduate training.

Professor Danielle Schreve, Director of the Centre for Quaternary Research at Royal Holloway, said: “The funding of the London NERC DTP cements Royal Holloway’s reputation for international excellence and innovation in environmental science.

“The London DTP, a collaboration of world-leading institutions, is a truly exciting opportunity that will allow Royal Holloway and its partners to train the next generation of research leaders in this field.”

The London NERC DTP brings together more than 375 academics working across most of the environmental sciences. It is a unique collaboration between Royal Holloway University, University College London, Birkbeck University of London, Brunel University, Institute of Zoology, King’s College London, The Natural History Museum, Queen Mary University of London and the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew.

The London DTP also includes strong links to businesses, policy-makers, and public and third sector organisations, such as BHP Billiton, Forestry Commission, Lloyds of London, Microsoft International and Ove Arup and Partners Ltd.

David Willetts, the Minister for Universities and Science, said: “This significant investment highlights the Government’s commitment to supporting postgraduate training and research in the environmental sciences. We’re dedicated to providing the next generation of environmental researchers with the necessary skills and training to succeed in academia and industry.

“The strong support for this programme from a number of international partners such as BP, Microsoft and Arup is enormously encouraging. Not only will this initiative benefit students, UK research organisations, business, industry and the economy, it will keep us at the forefront of the global science race.”


###


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Multi-million pound grant awarded to train UK’s future scientific leaders

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PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

5-Nov-2013

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Contact: Paul Teed
paul.teed@rhul.ac.uk
Royal Holloway, University of London

Royal Holloway University and eight other world-leading institutions have announced the creation of a new London NERC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), which will specialise in training the next generation of environmental scientists.

As part of a 100 million investment, revealed yesterday by the Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts, the London DTP will allow postgraduate students to use environmental sciences to tackle the challenges facing the world today.

It is one of 15 new DTPs across the UK, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), that were announced as part of NERC’s renewed commitment to postgraduate training.

Professor Danielle Schreve, Director of the Centre for Quaternary Research at Royal Holloway, said: “The funding of the London NERC DTP cements Royal Holloway’s reputation for international excellence and innovation in environmental science.

“The London DTP, a collaboration of world-leading institutions, is a truly exciting opportunity that will allow Royal Holloway and its partners to train the next generation of research leaders in this field.”

The London NERC DTP brings together more than 375 academics working across most of the environmental sciences. It is a unique collaboration between Royal Holloway University, University College London, Birkbeck University of London, Brunel University, Institute of Zoology, King’s College London, The Natural History Museum, Queen Mary University of London and the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew.

The London DTP also includes strong links to businesses, policy-makers, and public and third sector organisations, such as BHP Billiton, Forestry Commission, Lloyds of London, Microsoft International and Ove Arup and Partners Ltd.

David Willetts, the Minister for Universities and Science, said: “This significant investment highlights the Government’s commitment to supporting postgraduate training and research in the environmental sciences. We’re dedicated to providing the next generation of environmental researchers with the necessary skills and training to succeed in academia and industry.

“The strong support for this programme from a number of international partners such as BP, Microsoft and Arup is enormously encouraging. Not only will this initiative benefit students, UK research organisations, business, industry and the economy, it will keep us at the forefront of the global science race.”


###


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Source: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2013-11/rhuo-mpg110513.php
Related Topics: Pumpkin Carving Ideas   Tony Gonzalez   Washington Navy Yard   USA VS Mexico   FOX Sports 1  

Pleasure and pain brain signals disrupted in fibromyalgia patients

5 Nov

Pleasure and pain brain signals disrupted in fibromyalgia patients

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Contact: Dawn Peters
sciencenewsroom@wiley.com
781-388-8408
Wiley

New research indicates that a disruption of brain signals for reward and punishment contributes to increased pain sensitivity, known as hyperalgesia, in fibromyalgia patients. Results published in Arthritis & Rheumatism, a journal of the American College of Rheumatology, suggest that this altered brain processing might contribute to widespread pain and lack of response to opioid therapy in patients with fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic, musculoskeletal syndrome characterized by widespread joint and muscle pain along with other symptoms such as fatigue, sleep disturbances, and cognitive difficulty. Previous research estimates that fibromyalgia affects 3.4% of women and 0.5% of men in the U.S. Prevalence of this pain disorder increases with age, affecting more than 7% of women between 60 and 79 years of age.

“In patients with fibromyalgia there is an alteration in the central nervous system pain processing and a poor response to topical pain treatments, trigger point injections and opioids,” said lead author Dr. Marco Loggia from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston. “Our study examines the disruption of brain function involved in the individual experience of pain anticipation and pain relief.”

For the present study, the research team enrolled 31 patients with fibromyalgia and 14 healthy controls. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and cuff pressure pain stimuli on the leg were performed on all subjects. During the MRI, participants received visual cues alerting them of impending pain onset (pain anticipation) and pain offset (relief anticipation).

Results show that during pain anticipation and relief, fibromyalgia patients displayed less robust response within brain regions involved in sensory, affective, cognitive and pain regulating processes. The ventral tegmental area (VTA)a group of neurons in the center of the brain involved in the processing of reward and punishmentdisplayed activation during pain anticipation and stimulation, but deactivation during anticipation of relief in healthy controls. In contrast, VTA responses during periods of pain, and anticipation of pain and relief, in fibromyalgia patients were significantly reduced or inhibited.

Dr. Loggia concludes, “Our findings suggest that fibromyalgia patients exhibit altered brain responses to punishing and rewarding events, such as expectancy of pain and relief of pain. These observations may contribute to explain the heightened sensitivity to pain, as well as the lack of effectiveness of pain medications such as opioids, observed in these patients. Future studies should further investigate the neurochemical basis underlying these dysfunctions.”

###

This research was supported by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants (R01-AT004714, P01- AT002048, P01-AT006663, R01-AT005280; R01-AG034982, R21-AR057920).

This study is published in Arthritis & Rheumatism. Media wishing to receive a PDF of the article may contact sciencenewsroom@wiley.com


Full citation: “Disrupted Brain Circuitry for Pain-Related Reward/Punishment in Fibromyalgia.” Marco L. Loggia, Chantal Berna, Jieun Kim, Christine M. Cahalan, Randy L. Gollub, Ajay D. Wasan, Richard E. Harris, Robert R. Edwards and Vitaly Napadow. Arthritis & Rheumatism; Published Online: November 5, 2013 (DOI: 10.1002/art.38191).


URL Upon Publication: http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/art.38191


About the Author: To arrange an interview with Dr. Marco Loggia, please contact Michael Morrison with Massachusetts General Hospital at mdmorrison@partners.org.


About the Journal

Arthritis & Rheumatism is an official journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and covers all aspects of inflammatory disease. The American College of Rheumatology is the professional organization whose members share a dedication to healing, preventing disability, and curing the more than 100 types of arthritis and related disabling and sometimes fatal disorders of the joints, muscles, and bones. Members include practicing physicians, research scientists, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, psychologists, and social workers. The journal is published by Wiley on behalf of the ACR. For more information, please visit http://wileyonlinelibrary.com/journal/art.


About Wiley

Wiley is a global provider of content-enabled solutions that improve outcomes in research, education, and professional practice. Our core businesses produce scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, reference works, books, database services, and advertising; professional books, subscription products, certification and training services and online applications; and education content and services including integrated online teaching and learning resources for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners.

Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (NYSE: JWa, JWb), has been a valued source of information and understanding for more than 200 years, helping people around the world meet their needs and fulfill their aspirations. Wiley and its acquired companies have published the works of more than 450 Nobel laureates in all categories: Literature, Economics, Physiology or Medicine, Physics, Chemistry, and Peace. Wiley’s global headquarters are located in Hoboken, New Jersey, with operations in the U.S., Europe, Asia, Canada, and Australia. The Company’s website can be accessed at http://www.wiley.com.


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Pleasure and pain brain signals disrupted in fibromyalgia patients

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PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

5-Nov-2013

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Contact: Dawn Peters
sciencenewsroom@wiley.com
781-388-8408
Wiley

New research indicates that a disruption of brain signals for reward and punishment contributes to increased pain sensitivity, known as hyperalgesia, in fibromyalgia patients. Results published in Arthritis & Rheumatism, a journal of the American College of Rheumatology, suggest that this altered brain processing might contribute to widespread pain and lack of response to opioid therapy in patients with fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic, musculoskeletal syndrome characterized by widespread joint and muscle pain along with other symptoms such as fatigue, sleep disturbances, and cognitive difficulty. Previous research estimates that fibromyalgia affects 3.4% of women and 0.5% of men in the U.S. Prevalence of this pain disorder increases with age, affecting more than 7% of women between 60 and 79 years of age.

“In patients with fibromyalgia there is an alteration in the central nervous system pain processing and a poor response to topical pain treatments, trigger point injections and opioids,” said lead author Dr. Marco Loggia from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston. “Our study examines the disruption of brain function involved in the individual experience of pain anticipation and pain relief.”

For the present study, the research team enrolled 31 patients with fibromyalgia and 14 healthy controls. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and cuff pressure pain stimuli on the leg were performed on all subjects. During the MRI, participants received visual cues alerting them of impending pain onset (pain anticipation) and pain offset (relief anticipation).

Results show that during pain anticipation and relief, fibromyalgia patients displayed less robust response within brain regions involved in sensory, affective, cognitive and pain regulating processes. The ventral tegmental area (VTA)a group of neurons in the center of the brain involved in the processing of reward and punishmentdisplayed activation during pain anticipation and stimulation, but deactivation during anticipation of relief in healthy controls. In contrast, VTA responses during periods of pain, and anticipation of pain and relief, in fibromyalgia patients were significantly reduced or inhibited.

Dr. Loggia concludes, “Our findings suggest that fibromyalgia patients exhibit altered brain responses to punishing and rewarding events, such as expectancy of pain and relief of pain. These observations may contribute to explain the heightened sensitivity to pain, as well as the lack of effectiveness of pain medications such as opioids, observed in these patients. Future studies should further investigate the neurochemical basis underlying these dysfunctions.”

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This research was supported by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants (R01-AT004714, P01- AT002048, P01-AT006663, R01-AT005280; R01-AG034982, R21-AR057920).

This study is published in Arthritis & Rheumatism. Media wishing to receive a PDF of the article may contact sciencenewsroom@wiley.com


Full citation: “Disrupted Brain Circuitry for Pain-Related Reward/Punishment in Fibromyalgia.” Marco L. Loggia, Chantal Berna, Jieun Kim, Christine M. Cahalan, Randy L. Gollub, Ajay D. Wasan, Richard E. Harris, Robert R. Edwards and Vitaly Napadow. Arthritis & Rheumatism; Published Online: November 5, 2013 (DOI: 10.1002/art.38191).


URL Upon Publication: http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/art.38191


About the Author: To arrange an interview with Dr. Marco Loggia, please contact Michael Morrison with Massachusetts General Hospital at mdmorrison@partners.org.


About the Journal

Arthritis & Rheumatism is an official journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and covers all aspects of inflammatory disease. The American College of Rheumatology is the professional organization whose members share a dedication to healing, preventing disability, and curing the more than 100 types of arthritis and related disabling and sometimes fatal disorders of the joints, muscles, and bones. Members include practicing physicians, research scientists, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, psychologists, and social workers. The journal is published by Wiley on behalf of the ACR. For more information, please visit http://wileyonlinelibrary.com/journal/art.


About Wiley

Wiley is a global provider of content-enabled solutions that improve outcomes in research, education, and professional practice. Our core businesses produce scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, reference works, books, database services, and advertising; professional books, subscription products, certification and training services and online applications; and education content and services including integrated online teaching and learning resources for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners.

Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (NYSE: JWa, JWb), has been a valued source of information and understanding for more than 200 years, helping people around the world meet their needs and fulfill their aspirations. Wiley and its acquired companies have published the works of more than 450 Nobel laureates in all categories: Literature, Economics, Physiology or Medicine, Physics, Chemistry, and Peace. Wiley’s global headquarters are located in Hoboken, New Jersey, with operations in the U.S., Europe, Asia, Canada, and Australia. The Company’s website can be accessed at http://www.wiley.com.


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Source: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2013-11/w-pap103113.php
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Many health woes in teens seeking obesity surgery

5 Nov

This Friday, Nov. 1, 2013 photo, Chelsea Hale holds a photo of herself made three years ago at the age of 17 before she had obesity surgery, in Fairfield, Ohio. Hale had weighed 314 pounds and is now about 170 pounds. A government-funded study published online Monday, Nov. 4, 2013 in JAMA Pediatrics shows that teens seeking weight-loss surgery have a startling number of health problems that used to be seen only in adults. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)

This Friday, Nov. 1, 2013 photo, Chelsea Hale holds a photo of herself made three years ago at the age of 17 before she had obesity surgery, in Fairfield, Ohio. Hale had weighed 314 pounds and is now about 170 pounds. A government-funded study published online Monday, Nov. 4, 2013 in JAMA Pediatrics shows that teens seeking weight-loss surgery have a startling number of health problems that used to be seen only in adults. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)

In this Friday, Nov. 1, 2013 photo, Chelsea Hale poses outside her apartment , in Fairfield, Ohio. Hale had obesity surgery in August 2010 at age 17 when she weighed 314 pounds and is now about 170 pounds. A government-funded study published online Monday, Nov. 4, 2013 in JAMA Pediatrics shows that teens seeking weight-loss surgery have a startling number of health problems that used to be seen only in adults. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)

CHICAGO (AP) — U.S. teens seeking weight-loss surgery have a startling number of health problems that used to be seen only in adults, according to a major government-funded study.

Half the teens had at least four major illnesses linked with their excess weight. Three out of four had cholesterol problems; almost half had high blood pressure or joint pain; and many had diseased livers or kidneys.

These kids weighed three times more than what is considered healthy, they weren’t just teens “who want to fit into that cheerleading outfit better,” said Dr. Thomas Inge, the study’s lead researcher and a surgeon at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

The study offers reassuring evidence that obesity surgery is generally safe for teens, echoing previous short-term research. While it is a drastic, last-ditch option, major complications including accidental injury to internal organs occurred in just 8 percent of teens. Less serious complications including bleeding and dehydration affected 15 percent of kids during the first month after surgery.

The study involved 242 teens who had surgery at five U.S. centers from 2007 through 2011. Results for the first month after surgery were released online Monday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics. The National Institutes of Health paid for the study.

In a recent scientific statement, the American Heart Association said obesity surgery may be the most effective treatment for what it called “severe obesity” in teens, a condition it said affects about 5 percent of U.S. children and is increasing nationwide. The group’s threshold for severe obesity is a body mass index of at least 35; the average BMI in the study was 51.

Because lifestyle changes and medication rarely work for such obese teens, the statement says obesity surgery should be considered for those with related health problems who are psychologically mature enough to handle it.

The new results bolster evidence from smaller studies in teens and also suggest teens may do better, at least initially, than adults. Earlier 30-day research in adults found a few deaths after obesity surgery, although the risk was no greater than for other major operations. There were no deaths in the teen study.

A three-year follow-up report on more than 2,000 patients in the adult study was also published online Monday in the Journal of the American Medical Association. It showed adults generally had fewer obesity-related illnesses than in the teen study, and most weight loss occurred within the first year after surgery. Gastric bypass surgery, the most common operation in the U.S., resulted in more weight loss and more improvement in related illnesses than stomach banding, as other studies have shown. Three-year death rates were low, and similar for both procedures, but band patients had many more repeat surgeries.

In the teen study, whether obesity surgery resulted in lasting weight loss and better health remains to be seen; the researchers are still following the participants and calculating data.

But anecdotal reports from the teens suggest they’re doing pretty well.

Chelsea Hale of Cincinnati has shrunk from 314 to 170 pounds — almost half her previous size — since having surgery three years ago at age 17 at Cincinnati Children’s. Before surgery, Hale had a hormonal problem, heart blockage and sleep apnea — all linked with obesity and all have since subsided.

“I feel good, I can pretty much physically do anything,” said Hale, now in nursing school.

Like 28 percent of the teens studied, she had gastric sleeve surgery, which involves removing part of the stomach and creating a smaller tube or sleeve-shaped stomach. She has to be careful about eating only small portions of foods, to avoid getting sick, but said otherwise she has no food restrictions.

Some teens in the study say they can no longer tolerate certain foods, including sugar, meat or dairy products.

Most teens had gastric bypass or stomach stapling, which creates a small pouch in the stomach and attaches it to the intestines. A handful had gastric band operations, in which surgeons position an adjustable band around the top of the stomach, and inflate it to shrink the stomach. This operation has not been approved for U.S. teens.

Inge, a pioneer in obesity surgery in teens, says he does about 30 to 40 operations each year at Cincinnati Children’s and the numbers have increased slightly in recent years.

Kids must be severely obese to qualify. But many are so large that even when surgery results in substantial weight loss and better health, they can’t shrink their BMI to below the obese range, Inge said. That underscores the need to find ways to prevent severe obesity, he said.

University of Colorado heart specialist Dr. Robert Eckel, an American Heart Association spokesman, said the study shows obesity surgery should be considered a reasonable approach for kids, but that the study results may represent a best-case scenario, since surgeons involved were all highly experienced.

Parents seeking obesity surgery for their teens should have them evaluated in centers that do lots of these operations, he said.

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Online:

Obesity surgery: http://1.usa.gov/bFLmPR

JAMA Pediatrics: http://www.jamapediatrics.com

___

Follow AP Medical Writer Lindsey Tanner at http://www.twitter.com

Associated PressSource: http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/bbd825583c8542898e6fa7d440b9febc/Article_2013-11-04-Teens-Obesity%20Surgery/id-c71051c550114fc9abe3681e457cb97b
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