Author Interviews, Breast Cancer, Cancer Research, Radiology, Yale / 01.07.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Sarah H. O'Connell M.D. PGY-4 Yale New Haven Hospital Yale School of Medicine Department of Diagnostic Radiology MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: The purpose of our study was to evaluate the visibility of cancers in women at high-risk for breast cancer on 2D mammography compared to digital breast tomosynthesis. In other words, how would the use of tomosynthesis contribute to cancer visualization in this population of patients? We evaluated the cancers seen in both high-risk patients, those with a >20% lifetime risk of breast cancer, and intermediate risk patients, those with a 15-20% lifetime risk of breast cancer, for a total of 56 cancers. We found that 41% (23/56) cancers were better seen on tomosynthesis and 4% (2/56) were only seen on tomosynthesis. The majority of the cancers seen better or only on tomosynthesis presented as masses rather than as calcifications alone which were better seen on 2D mammography. (more…)
Cost of Health Care, JAMA / 28.06.2013

Genevieve Kenney Ph.D Senior Fellow and Co-Director, Health Policy Center The Urban Institute 2100 M Street NW Washington DC 20037 MedicalResearch.com Interview with Genevieve Kenney Ph.D Senior Fellow and Co-Director, Health Policy Center The Urban Institute 2100 M Street NW Washington DC 20037 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Kenney: Our study is the first published analysis that draws on physical examinations, laboratory tests, and patient reports to assess the health needs and health risks of uninsured adults who could be eligible for Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act relative to the adults who are already enrolled in Medicaid. Our main findings are that the uninsured adults who could enroll under the ACA are less likely than the adults with Medicaid coverage to be obese and to have functional limitations and chronic health problems, such as hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, or diabetes, but that the uninsured adults with these chronic conditions are less likely to be aware that they have them and less likely to have the condition under control. In comparison to the Medicaid population, the uninsured adults in our study were also less likely to have seen a health professional in the prior year and to have a routine place for care. The rates of undiagnosed and uncontrolled chronic health care problems found in our study indicate that millions of low-income uninsured adults are currently at risk of premature mortality and other significant health issues. These findings provide new evidence of the potential health benefits associated with the Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. (more…)
Author Interviews, Diabetes, General Medicine / 28.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com: Interview with Christina Ellervik Associate Professor Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences University of Copenhagen , Denmark MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: Early measurement of transferrin saturation leading to early intervention in patients with late-onset type 1 diabetes improves life expectancy. Excess death is mainly due to cancer-specific death. (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Breast Cancer, Cancer Research, Fish, Nutrition / 28.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with Duo Li (PhD, MSc, BMed) Co-Editor, Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition Associate Editor, Journal of Nutrigenetics & Nutrigenomics Professor of Nutrition Dept. of Food Science & Nutrition Zhejiang University 866 Yu-Hang-Tang Road Hangzhou 310058, China MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Li: The main finding is that intake marine n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) from both fish and fish oil lower the risk of breast cancer. Women with a high intake of marine n-3 PUFAs had a 14-percent reduction in risk of breast cancer compared with those who had a low intake. Every 0.1 g increase in marine n-3 PUFA per day was linked to a five-percent reduction in breast cancer risk. (more…)
Author Interviews, Diabetes, JAMA, Nutrition, Red Meat / 28.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com: An Pan, PhD

Research Associate, Dept Nutrition 655 Huntington Avenue Building 2, Room 351 Boston, Massachusetts 02115

Changes in Red Meat Consumption and Subsequent Risk of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: Three Cohorts of US Men and Women MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: -- Compared with people who did not change their intake of red meat, those who increased it by as little as half a serving a day (about 1.5 ounces) over a four-year period had a 48% increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the subsequent 4 years. -- People who decreased their intake by half a serving a day over four years did not have an acute reduced risk in the next four years compared to people who did not change their intake, but had a reduced risk of developing the disease by 14% in the entire follow-up period, suggesting a prolonged effect. -- The findings included both processed meat such as lunch meat and hot dogs and unprocessed meats such as hamburger, steak and pork. And the association was generally stronger for processed red meat compared to unprocessed red meat. -- Adjusting for weight modestly reduced the association between red meat consumption and diabetes suggesting that weight gain played a role in the development of the disease. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, Lyme / 27.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Xin Li, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Veterinary Biosciences The Ohio State University 344 Veterinary Medicine Academic Building Columbus, OH 43210 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Xin Li : Antibody responses to borrelial antigens that are primarily expressed during the tick phase the spirochetes’ life cycle are common in American patients with Lyme arthritis, a late-stage manifestation of Lyme borreliosis, but are rare in American patients with early-stage infection or European patients with early- or late-stage infection. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cost of Health Care, JAMA, Medical Research Centers / 26.06.2013

Dr. Karen E. Joynt, MD MPH Cardiovascular Division Brigham and Women's Hospital and VA Boston Healthcare System Department of Health Policy and Management, Harvard School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com Interview with Dr. Karen E. Joynt, MD MPH Cardiovascular Division Brigham and Women's Hospital and VA Boston Healthcare System Department of Health Policy and Management, Harvard School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Joynt: The main findings of the study were two-fold. First, high-cost patients in Medicare (the top decile of spenders) are responsible for about 80% of inpatient spending in the Medicare program, so understanding more about these patients' patterns of care is really important. Second, we found that only about 10% of acute-care spending for these high-cost Medicare patients were for causes that we generally think of as preventable in the short term, like uncontrolled diabetes, COPD, or heart failure. The rest of the spending was for acute conditions that we generally don't think of as preventable (at least in the short term), such as orthopedic procedures, sepsis, and cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, JAMA, Yale / 25.06.2013

Dr. Kumar Dharmarajan MD MBA Yale School of Medicine Center for Outcomes Research & Evaluation (CORE)Contraindicated Initiation of β-Blocker Therapy in Patients Hospitalized for Heart Failure MedicalResearch.com Interview with Dr. Kumar Dharmarajan MD MBA

Yale School of Medicine Center for Outcomes Research & Evaluation (CORE)Contraindicated Initiation of β-Blocker Therapy in Patients Hospitalized for Heart Failure MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? We found that among a large contemporary cohort of heart failure hospitalizations, beta blockers are frequently started in patients with markers of clinical instability such as residence in an intensive care unit (ICU), volume overload requiring intravenous diuresis, and poor cardiac output requiring intravenous inotropes. Approximately 40% of patients in whom a beta blocker is started has at least one of these three potential contraindications to treatment. This finding is concerning, as recent performance measures for heart failure recommend that a beta blocker be started during hospitalization for heart failure among patients with left ventricular systolic dysfunction. However, these performance measures also state that persons in whom a beta blocker is started "should not be hospitalized in an ICU, should have no or minimal evidence of fluid overload or volume depletion, and should not have required recent treatment with an intravenous positive inotropic agent." Moving forward, we are concerned that the unselective application of the new performance measure may lead to the further use of beta blocker therapy in patients at higher risk for adverse consequences of therapy. (more…)
Author Interviews, Stroke / 22.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Saeid Shahidi, MD. Chief Consultant in supra-aortic surgery. Vascular Unit, Regional Hospital Slagelse, Region Zealand, Denmark. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background of your study? Answer: Our Prospective Population-based study showed, an expedited CEA can be performed in the subacute period ( >2 - <30 days) without significantly increasing the operative risk. The acute admission and urgent aggressive BMT with dual therapy in our cohort was associated with significant reduction P<0.00001 in the risk of early neurological recurrent (NR) in the CEA patient. It seems that in neurologically stable patients CEA can wait up to 30 days provided urgent BMT has been started in specialized stroke/ TIA clinics. Our study also adds to the data on the benefit of specialist TIA clinics. (more…)
HIV, Infections, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 21.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with Dr. H. Irene Hall, PhD Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, CDC 1600 Clifton Road, MS E-47, Atlanta, GA 30333 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Hall: Our research finds that, across all populations, far too few Americans with HIV receive the care they need to stay healthy and reduce risk of transmission. According to our research, gaps in care are the largest among African Americans and young people. Moving forward, improving care for all HIV-infected people will be critical to achieving the goal of an AIDS-free generation in America. More specifically, some of the key findings of the study include:
  • Overall, only a quarter of all Americans with HIV have a suppressed viral load – meaning the level of HIV in their bodies is low enough to stay healthy and dramatically reduce the chance of transmitting to others.
  • By race/ethnicity, African-Americans and Hispanics or Latinos are less likely to be aware of their infection compared to whites.
  • By age, younger Americans are less likely to be in ongoing care and have a suppressed viral load; HIV care and viral suppression generally improved with age. For example:
  • Fifteen percent of those aged 25-34 were virally suppressed, compared to 36 percent of those aged 55-64.
  • In terms of ongoing care, 28 percent of those 25-34 years old were retained in care, compared to 46 percent of those aged 55-64. (more…)
Brigham & Women's - Harvard, General Medicine, Medical Research Centers / 20.06.2013

Dr. Susan Redline M.D.,M.P.H. Peter C. Farrell Professor of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School Brigham and Women's Hospital 221 Longwood Ave., Boston, MA 02115 MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Susan Redline M.D.,M.P.H. Peter C. Farrell Professor of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School Brigham and Women's Hospital 221 Longwood Ave., Boston, MA 02115 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Redline: Among children with sleep apnea, early adenotonsillectomy resulted in significant improvements in breathing during sleep, daytime behavior, sleep related symptoms, sleepiness and quality of life when we valuated 6 months after surgery. MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected? (more…)
Diabetes, JAMA, Pediatrics / 20.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Ezio Bonifacio, Ph.D. Professor, Preclinical Stem Cells/Diabetes Center for Regenerative Therapies Dresden Technische Universität Dresden MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Bonifacio: Children who develop multiple islet autoantibodies are destined to develop diabetes. Only a minority will be diabetes-free 15 years after developing islet autoantibodies. This is regardless of whether they have a family history of type 1 diabetes. Progression to diabetes after seroconversion varied from weeks to decades, and 20% of children had diabetes within 2 years from seroconverting. Progression was fastest in children who developed their islet autoantibodies before age 3 years. MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected? Dr. Bonifacio: Unexpected is probably not the right word. The Eisenbarth model of chronic disease proposes that diabetes will happen some time after autoimmunity and the findings show the reality of it. Perhaps the unexpected finding is that it is not always chronic and that for a number of children, intervention would need to be applied quickly. (more…)
Author Interviews, McGill, Nutrition, Probiotics, Vitamin D / 20.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Mitchell Jones, MD, PhD Faculty of Medicine at McGill University in Montreal Dr. Mitchell Jones, MD, PhD Faculty of Medicine at McGill University in Montreal MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Jones: We had previously reported on the cholesterol lowering efficacy of bile salt hydrolase active L. reuteri NCIMB 30242 due to reduced intestinal sterol absorption. However, the effects of bile salt hydrolase active L. reuteri NCIMB 30242 on fat soluble vitamins was previously unknown and was the focus of the study. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Pediatrics, Rheumatology, Vaccine Studies / 19.06.2013

Marloes Heijstek MD University Medical Center, Wilhelmina Children's Hospital Department of Pediatric Immunology and Rheumatology Room number KC 03.063.0 P.O. Box 85090 Lundlaan 6 3508 AB Utrecht MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marloes Heijstek MD University Medical Center, Wilhelmina Children's Hospital Department of Pediatric Immunology and Rheumatology Room number KC 03.063.0 P.O. Box 85090 Lundlaan 6 3508 AB Utrecht MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Heijstek: The main findings of our study are that MMR booster vaccination does not affect JIA disease, does not cause flares of arthritis and induces high rates of protective immunity. (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Hospital Acquired, Infections, Outcomes & Safety / 19.06.2013

Marin L. Schweizer Ph.D. Assistant Professor University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine, Iowa City, IA, USA MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marin L. Schweizer Ph.D. Assistant Professor University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine Iowa City, IA, USA MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Schweizer: A clinical bundle that includes nasally screening cardiac and orthopedic surgery patients for S. aureus (both methicillin-resistant S. aureus and methicillin-susceptible S. aureus), decolonizing carriers, and changing antibiotic prophylaxis for MRSA carriers, can significantly reduce the number of gram-positive surgical site infections, S. aureus surgical site infections and MRSA surgical site infections. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Medical Research Centers, Sleep Disorders / 17.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with Yanping Li, PhD Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School Department of Medicine Channing Division of Network Medicine Boston, MA MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: During 8 years of follow-up, we observed that men with RLS had a 30% increased risk of death. MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected? Answer: Based on our hypothesis, we would like to observed a higher risk of death from cardiovascular diseases, but we do not. (more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Johns Hopkins, Sleep Disorders / 12.06.2013

Hemodialysis.com Interview with: Christopher Kaufmann, MHS Department of Mental Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Hampton House, Room 800 624 North Broadway Baltimore, MD 21205 email: ckaufman@jhsph.edu MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Mr. Kaufmann: The purpose of our study was to examine the association between insomnia and the use of a number of costly health services. We used data from the Health and Retirement Study, a large nationally representative longitudinal population-based study of US middle-aged and older adults. We found that individuals who reported a greater number of insomnia symptoms were more likely to report being hospitalized, using home healthcare services, and using nursing homes two years later. After we accounted for a number of demographic and clinical characteristics, the association between number of reported insomnia symptoms and hospitalization remained statistically significant. (more…)
Author Interviews / 12.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: Michael Bang Petersen Associate Professor, PhD Department of Political Science Aarhus University, Denmark MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: While many think of politics as a modern phenomenon, politics has – in a sense – been with our species always. Our ancestors have been group living animals for millions of years and it would be surprising if natural selection had not shaped our ancestors’ psychology to navigate core political situations including how to manage resource conflicts. In this article, we applied this insight to the study of attitudes towards economic redistribution and theorized about the kinds of factors that an evolved psychology of conflict navigation would consider important. Given that we evolved in small-scale groups and many conflicts would have to be settled face-to-face, one such factor – at least, for males – would be physical strength. Essentially, stronger males should be more likely to escalate conflicts and pursuit their self-interest. On modern political issues of economic redistribution, self-interest is determined by socio-economic status (SES). Individuals with high SES have an interest in decreasing redistribution, whereas individuals with low SES have an interest in increasing redistribution. On this basis, an adaptationist perspective on the psychology of redistribution attitudes predicts that for rich males upper-body strength should decrease support for redistribution. For poor males, in contrast, upper-body strength should increase support for redistribution. This is what we found in three highly different countries: the United States, Denmark and Argentina. Cross countries, physically strong males opted for the self-interested political position. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Esophageal, Nutrition / 08.06.2013

DR. RAUL ZAMORA-ROS, PhD. POSDOCTORAL FELLOW UNIT OF NUTRITION, ENVIRONMENT AND CANCER CATALAN INSTITUTE OF ONCOLOGY (ICO) – BELLVITGE BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH INSTITUTE (IDIBELL) BARCELONA, SPAIN MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Zamora-Ros: Our study shows that diets rich on flavonoids (polyphenols ubiquitously distributed in the plant kingdom, such as in fruit, vegetables, tea, wine and chocolate), particularly flavonols, are associated with less esophageal cancer risk, especially in current smokers. Tobacco smoking causes oxidative stress, and both oxidative stress and smoking tobacco are related to increased esophageal cancer risk. Therefore, our data suggest that the possible protective mechanism of dietary flavonoids may be related to their antioxidant properties, which may not be attributed to the direct antioxidant action, but to the ability to modulate antioxidant enzymatic pathways. (more…)
Duke, Mental Health Research, Ophthalmology / 08.06.2013

From: Duke University

Department of Psychology & Neuroscience, Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy 2020 West Main Street, Suite 201 Box 104410 Durham, North Carolina 27708

TITLE: Retinal Vessel Caliber and Lifelong Neuropsychological Functioning An international research team from the USA, UK, Singapore and New Zealand reports that the size of the blood vessels in the back of the eye can indicate the health of the brain of people approaching midlife (age 38 years), years before age-related declines in brain functioning. PUBLICATION SOURCE: Psychological Science, advance online publication date, May 2013. BACKGROUND:
  • Young people who score low on IQ tests, tend to be at higher risk for diseases in later life, and even tend to die younger.
  • One plausible explanation for this link is that intelligence tests assess brain health.
  • Digital retinal imaging is a relatively new and non-invasive method to visualize the small blood vessels in the retina, at the back of the eye. The small vessels in the eye may reflect the conditions of the vessels inside the brain because both eye and brain vessels share similar size, structure and function. Thus, retinal imaging can provide a window to study the health of the brain in living humans.
  • We studied the link between retinal vessel width and intelligence tests scores in the representative Dunedin birth cohort of 1000 New Zealanders born in 1972-73, and followed for 38 years with repeated assessments.
  • Using a digital fundus camera, which can photograph the interior surface of the eye, we were able to assess the size of the small blood-vessels in the retina, namely, the arterioles and venules (the small branches of the arteries and veins). We also administered intelligence tests in childhood and adulthood.
THE FINDING:
  • We found that study members who presented with wider venules had poorer intelligence tests scores at midlife (age 38 years). This finding held up independently of potential factors that may explain this link, such as low socio-economic status, smoking, or diabetes.
  • Moreover, wider venules in the eye were linked with lower childhood IQ that had been tested 25 years earlier.
  • (more…)
Author Interviews, Sleep Disorders, University of Pennsylvania / 07.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Frederick M. Brown, Ph.D. Associate Professor The Pennsylvania State University Department of Psychology, Cognitive and Wellness Director, Human Performance Rhythms Laboratory MedicalResearch.com: What was the primary finding of your study? Dr. Brown: Time of day of an occupation, as well as a regular versus irregular routine, may influence whether a person wants to go into it or not. Most educational research has focused on academic major selection motivated by job aptitude, personality, and sociocultural factors. Our findings suggest that a person’s genetically determined built-in morning versus evening (M/E) preference for best time of day to work or sleep may influence career choice in two important ways: This M/E preference for work and sleep is related to 1) personality and to 2) the time of day the job is executed. These may interact with how much sleep a person thinks they need. In addition to the personality traits associated with M/E, such as morning people being more introverted and evening people more extroverted, an individual’s choice of major may be influenced by their preference for the typical work hours of a profession, such as a routine 9-to-5 schedule versus irregular evening and weekend work. (more…)
Author Interviews, C. difficile, Infections, Nutrition, Probiotics / 07.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: Dr. Reena Pattani MD Department of Medicine St. Michael’s Hospital 30 Bond Street, Toronto ON M5B 1W8 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Pattani: We performed a meta-analysis of 16 studies that assessed the effectiveness of probiotics administered concurrently with antibiotics compared to the use of antibiotics alone. The use of probiotics among patients in these trials reduced the risk of antibiotic-associated diarrhea by almost 40% and decreased the rate of Clostridium difficile infection by 63%. On subgroup analysis, the reduction remained statistically significant for the subgroups of good quality trials, trials in which a primarily Lactobacillus-based regimen was used, and those studies which had a follow-up period of less than 4 weeks. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Nutrition, Outcomes & Safety, Vegetarians / 06.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: Michael J. Orlich, M.D. Program Director Preventive Medicine Residency Loma Linda University www.lluprevmedres.org Research Fellow, Adventist Health Studies www.adventisthealthstudy.org MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Orlich: The main findings were these. Vegetarians, as we defined them, had reduced risk of death during the study period compared to non-vegetarians. This was true also for particular vegetarian diets including for vegans, lacto-ovo-vegetarians, and pesco-vegetarians. Reduced risk was seen in particular for deaths related to disease of the heart, kidneys, and diabetes. Findings were stronger in men than women. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Social Issues / 05.06.2013

Peter Muennig, MD, MPH Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management Columbia University School of Public Health NY City, NY MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: Peter Muennig, MD, MPH Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management Columbia University School of Public Health NY City, NY     MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: We find that one of the welfare time limit experiments that led to welfare reform in the United States in 1996 led to increases in mortality rates among experimental group participants over 14-15 years of follow up. MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected? Answer: Yes. Welfare reform led to increases in employment among the experimental group participants. Employment has long been hypothesized to reduce mortality. We examined this experiment to explore whether increases in employment among those exposed to time limits on welfare reduced mortality. We found instead they increased mortality. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Outcomes & Safety / 04.06.2013

James D. Chambers, PhD, MPharm Assistant Professor The Center for the Evaluation of Value and Risk in Health Institute for Clinical Research and Health Policy Studies TuftsMedicalCenter www.cearegistry.org MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Epstein: Using cost-effectiveness evidence to help inform the allocation of expenditures for medical interventions in Medicare has the potential to generate substantial aggregate health gains for the Medicare population with no increases in spending. Reallocating expenditures for interventions in Medicare using cost-effectiveness evidence led to an estimated aggregate health gain of 1.8 million quality-adjusted life years (QALYs), a measure of health gain that accounts for both quality and quantity of life. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brain Injury, Depression, Mental Health Research, UT Southwestern / 04.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: John Hart, M.D. Medical Science Director at the Center for BrainHealth Jane and Bud Smith Distinguished Chair Cecil Green Distinguished Chair The University of Texas at Dallas John Hart, M.D. Medical Science Director at the Center for BrainHealth Jane and Bud Smith Distinguished Chair Cecil Green Distinguished Chair The University of Texas at Dallas MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Hart: Football players often sustain numerous concussive and subconcussive impacts—head impacts that do not elicit neurologic symptoms that may lead to white matter damage. We evaluated a population of retired NFL players in order to study the relationship between white matter integrity and the manifestation of depressive symptoms. We identified, for the first time, a correlation between depression and white matter abnormalities in former players with a remote history of concussion using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). Our data demonstrated a significant association between white matter integrity, as measured by DTI Fractional Anisotropy (FA), and the presence as well as severity of depressive symptoms in retired NFL athletes with a history of concussive or subconcussive impacts. We also found that dysfunction of the anterior aspect of the corpus callosum (forceps minor) and its projections to the frontal lobe can identify those with depression with 100% sensitivity and 95% specificity. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Lifestyle & Health / 04.06.2013

MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: Haitham Ahmed, MD, MPH The Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease Johns Hopkins Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What were the main findings of the study? Dr. Ahmed: Everyone knows that healthy lifestyle habits are major factors that protect you from heart disease. What we don’t know is which habits are most important, and how exactly these habits prevent disease progression along the causal biological pathway over years and years. So we followed 6,200 men and women of various ethnic backgrounds from 6 university locations across the US. We looked at their eating habits, exercise, weight, and smoking history. We did CT scans on them at the start of the study and then a few years later (mean 3 years) and found that healthier people had lower calcium deposition in their coronaries. We then kept following them and found that these same healthy people had a trend towards less cardiovascular events. We then kept following them further and found that these same healthy people died less, by an 80% lower rate, compared to people that were unhealthy, which was incredible. So what we took away from this is that you have enormous power in changing your risk of atherosclerosis, heart disease, and death by changing your lifestyle behaviors. (more…)