New Features Of The Immune System. Part 3 of 3

New Features Of The Immune System – Part 3 of 3

Right now narcolepsy can be difficult to pinpoint, because the most ordinary symptom – daytime sleepiness – has far more common causes. The most common is simple: Not going to bed early enough. So to diagnose narcolepsy, people may have to expend 24 hours in a sleep lab or, in some cases, have a lumbar puncture (spinal tap) to measure hypocretin in the spinal fluid. She said that if an autoimmune reaction is the cause of type 1 narcolepsy, it might be workable to treat with an immune-suppressing therapy.

The problem, though, is that once people develop full-blown symptoms, their hypocretin-producing cells have already been knocked off. “We’d need some kind of pre-clinical marker of the illness to be able to intervene,” said Watson at the University of Seattle. Roth of Henry Ford Hospital agreed. “The big challenge is, how will you identify the people to treat?” Three of the study authors reported they are inventors on a licence to use the hypocretin protein segments to diagnose narcolepsy spain. Stanford owns the intellectual property rights for this use.

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New Features Of The Immune System. Part 2 of 3

New Features Of The Immune System – Part 2 of 3

T cells are a clarification part of immune system defenses against infection. That finding was based on 39 people with type 1 narcolepsy, and 35 people without the disorder – including four sets of twins in which one join was affected and the other was not. It’s known that genetic susceptibility plays a role in narcolepsy. And the theory is that in people with that inherent risk, certain environmental triggers may cause an autoimmune answer against the body’s own hypocretin.


Infections are the main culprit, and there is already evidence that the H1N1 “swine” flu is one trigger. In China there was an upswing in childhood narcolepsy cases after the H1N1 flu pandemic of 2009. And in 2010, a body of narcolepsy cases in Europe was linked to a particular H1N1 vaccine that contained an “adjuvant” designed to induce a stronger immune system response. That vaccine, called Pandemrix, is no longer in use.

All of that led experts to take a plunge that in some genetically vulnerable people, the H1N1 virus could cause T cells to mistakenly attack hypocretin-producing brain cells. And in the trend study, Mellins’s team found that segments of the H1N1 virus were similar to portions of the hypocretin protein – the same portions that activated narcolepsy patients’ T cells. They voice that supports the idea that certain infections confuse T cells into attacking hypocretin-producing cells.

An expert on sleep welcomed the new study. “They’re providing more-compelling display that this is an autoimmune disease,” said Dr Nathaniel Watson, an associate professor of neurology at the University of Washington in Seattle, and a member of the board of directors for the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. He and Mellins both said the results could have reasonable use, too. For one, researchers may be able to develop a blood test to help objectively diagnose narcolepsy.

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New Features Of The Immune System. Part 1 of 3

New Features Of The Immune System – Part 1 of 3

New Features Of The Immune System. A changed study has uncovered evidence that most cases of narcolepsy are caused by a misguided immune system attack – something that has been sustained suspected but unproven. Experts said the finding, reported Dec 18, 2013 in Science Translational Medicine, could lead to a blood test for the sleep disorder, which can be nit-picking to diagnose. It also lays out the possibility that treatments that focus on the immune system could be used against the disease. “That would be a long way out,” said Thomas Roth, director of the Sleep Disorders and Research Center at Henry Ford Hospital, in Detroit.

So “If you’re a narcolepsy submissive now, this isn’t going to change your clinical care tomorrow,” added Roth, who was not elaborate in the study. Still the findings are “exciting,” and advance the understanding of narcolepsy. Narcolepsy causes a range of symptoms, the most common being excessive sleepiness during the day. But it may be best known for triggering potentially menacing “sleep attacks”.

In these, people fall asleep without warning, for anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes. About 70 percent of people with narcolepsy have a symptom called cataplexy – impetuous bouts of muscle weakness. That’s known as type 1 narcolepsy, and it affects roughly one in 3000 people, according to the US National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Research shows that those relations have low levels of a brain chemical called hypocretin, which helps you stay awake.

And experts have believed the deficiency is probably caused by an abnormal immune system attack on the knowledge cells that produce hypocretin. “Narcolepsy has been suspected of being an autoimmune disease,” said Dr Elizabeth Mellins, a senior author of the study and an immunology researcher at Stanford University School of Medicine, in California. “But there’s never quite been proof of immune system activity that’s any different from normal activity”. Mellins thinks her team has uncovered “very strong evidence” of just such an underlying problem. The researchers found that commonalty with narcolepsy have a subgroup of T cells in their blood that react to particular portions of the hypocretin protein – but narcolepsy-free people do not.

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Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires. Part 3 of 3

Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires – Part 3 of 3

In New Mexico, individuals reporting to the emergency room with complaints attributable to the smoke are being treated and released. “The most important thing is that people need to be diligent about their underlying health maintenance. If you do have asthma or COPD, you poverty to be very diligent about complying with doctor’s instructions around medications.

If there was ever a time to avoid missing doses of regular medication it would be now”. The New Mexico Department of Health has issued several vigorousness advisories, warning elderly people, children and people with respiratory or heart conditions to stay away from the smoke, remaining inside if necessary.

People are also being advised not to use their “swamp coolers,” or the evaporative cooling systems that are ubiquitous in the out Southwest, because they pull smoke in from the outside. “We’re recommending that those people in close proximity to smoke take certain precautions our website. Once the air gets into the moderate-hazardous range, we’re advising family to stay inside, not to do strenuous activity outside, keep doors and windows closed and for people with respiratory problems to not go outside at all”.

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Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires. Part 2 of 3

Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires – Part 2 of 3

Jo Jordan, a 20-year resident of Albuquerque, attributes a rare migraine to smoke blowing in from the southeast. “I was out and the smoke was just hanging in the air. My throat got prickly and I started with a headache. By the time I got home, I had a migraine,” she related. “I had it for a day and a half.


There was a lot of discomfort, my eyes hurt, I was nauseous”. Not surprisingly, Arizona residents closer to the Wallow detonate are also reporting some breathing difficulties, said Dr Cara Christ, essential medical officer for public health at the Arizona Department of Health Services in Phoenix. But the biggest effect comes from stress.

And “This is having a huge behavioral impact. We’ve got on-the-ground counselors universal to hotels, going to homes, going to shelters – primarily to people who’ve been displaced or lost their homes or people who are fearful of losing their homes”.

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Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires. Part 1 of 3

Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires – Part 1 of 3

Health Hazards Of Smoke From Forest Fires. With record-breaking wildfires bitter the American Southwest, experts are worried not just about the environmental and property damage, but also about salubrity risks both to nearby residents and to those living farther away. Although at this point reports are anecdotal, people on the front lines of health care in the Southwest are noticing an uptick of respiratory problems among certain groups of people. The Gallup Indian Medical Center, which sits on the border of the Navajo Reservation in western New Mexico, is seeing a lot of asthma-related complaints, said Heidi Krapfl, greatest of the environmental health epidemiology bureau at the New Mexico Department of Health in Santa Fe.

Similar problems are being seen in more distant parts of the state. “We’ve definitely seen patients in the exigency room who have come in with a worsening of their chronic lung disease like asthma or COPD chronic obstructive pulmonary disease that they’ve attributed to the smoke,” said Dr Mike Richards, bossman of emergency medicine at the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque. As of Wednesday afternoon, large wildfires were raging uncontained in southeast Arizona and along the state’s border with Mexico; along the eastern effectiveness of New Mexico; in multiple locations throughout Texas and along the Texas-Louisiana border, according to the US Forest Service.

For weeks now, Albuquerque has been on the receiving end of huge banks of smoke and ash from the Wallow conflagration 200 or so miles away. Smoke and ash have turned the setting sun red, reduced driving visibility and obscured normally crystal clear views of the 11000-foot mountains edging Albuquerque’s eastern perimeters. On some days, the stink of burning is overwhelming.

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Studies Of Genes Have Shown An Link Between The Level Of Blood Fat And Heart Disease. Part 3 of 3

Studies Of Genes Have Shown An Link Between The Level Of Blood Fat And Heart Disease – Part 3 of 3

This study suggests a modest independent intimacy between triglycerides and coronary heart disease. “Despite these findings it still remains to be demonstrated whether lowering triglyceride levels in patients with – or at risk for – cardiovascular disease will in and of itself reduce the risk of cardiovascular events and if so by how much”.

Another expert, Dr Byron Lee, an aid professor of cardiology at the University of California, San Francisco, suggested the study could alter the guidelines for heart prevention. “Traditionally, clinicians have focused only on getting our patients’ LDL down and our HDL up because we idea that these were the major players in heart disease longinexx before and after. However, this study indicates that we need to now worry about high triglyceride levels as well”.

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