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Health - Life Sciences - 20.12.2023
New study from the RVC explores malaria invasion to help develop life-saving vaccine
Last Updated: 20 Dec 2023 16:00:21 Researchers from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) and University of Oxford have led an innovative project investigating the progression of malaria infection and the role of the parasite to better aid the development of an effective malaria vaccine and significantly reduce rates of deaths from the disease.

Health - Pharmacology - 18.12.2023
’Unclear’ whether opioids are effective at treating cancer pain
The world's largest review on opioid medicines for cancer pain has found it is unclear whether some commonly used opioid medicines are better than a placebo and suggests that non-opioid medicines, including aspirin, may be as effective as opioids. Researchers examining the data on opioids for pain caused by cancer have found surprisingly large gaps in evidence regarding the true benefits of these medicines for cancer pain.

Life Sciences - Health - 18.12.2023
Unusual RNA structures could be targets for new ALS treatments
Studying strange forms of RNA associated with the formation of aggregates in the brains of ALS patients could lead to new avenues for treatments. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive motor neuron disease, which causes degeneration of nerve cells in the spinal cord and brain. Neurodegenerative diseases, including ALS, dementia, and Alzheimer's, are the leading cause of death in the UK, and there are no known cures.

Health - Linguistics / Literature - 18.12.2023
Doctor Who festive specials linked to lower death rates
Study highlights the positive impact of doctors working over the festive period - may prompt broadcasters to air new Doctor Who episodes each year at Christmas A new Doctor Who episode shown during the festive period, especially on Christmas Day, is associated with lower death rates in the subsequent year across the UK, finds a new study.

Health - Social Sciences - 15.12.2023
Early-life diseases linked to lifelong childlessness
A ground-breaking study, published in Nature Human Behaviour , reveals a significant association between 74 early-life diseases and the likelihood of remaining childless throughout one's life, with 33 of these diseases prevalent in both women and men. Led by Aoxing Liu and senior authors Melinda Mills , Andrea Ganna and an international team, the study examined the link between 414 early-life diseases and lifetime childlessness in over 2.5 million individuals born in Finland and Sweden.

Health - Life Sciences - 15.12.2023
New gene therapy could significantly reduce seizures in severe childhood epilepsy
UCL researchers have developed a new gene therapy to cure a devastating form of childhood epilepsy, which a new study shows can significantly reduce seizures in mice. The study, published in Brain , sought to find an alternative to surgery for children with focal cortical dysplasia. Focal cortical dysplasia is caused by areas of the brain that have developed abnormally and is among the most common causes of drug-resistant epilepsy in children.

Health - Life Sciences - 15.12.2023
Immune cells could offer new avenues for treating respiratory diseases
Immune cells could offer new avenues for treating respiratory diseases
Healthy lung development hinges on communication between immune cells and cells that line the airways, according to new research from UCL and the Wellcome Sanger Institute, with implications for the treatment of respiratory diseases. The study, published in Science Immunology , has created a first-of-its-kind immune cell atlas of the developing lung, revealing coordination between the immune and respiratory systems much earlier in development than previously thought.

Life Sciences - Health - 14.12.2023
Researchers define new class of regulatory element in DNA
Researchers at the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine's Laboratory of Gene Regulation , led by Professor Doug Higgs and Dr Mira Kassouf , have published a study in the journal Cell , in which they reveal another piece of the puzzle of how the code in our DNA is read. In this study, the authors introduce the concept of "facilitators", a newly identified type of non-coding DNA that can help to drive gene expression.

Health - Life Sciences - 14.12.2023
Pattern of alcohol intake more accurate indicator of liver disease risk than overall consumption
Those who binge drink and have a certain genetic makeup are six times more likely to develop alcohol-related cirrhosis, according to new research from UCL, the Royal Free Hospital, the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge. The study, published in Nature Communications , is the first to assess how an individual's pattern of drinking, their genetic profile (via a polygenic risk score) and whether or not they have type-2 diabetes affects their risk of developing alcohol-related cirrhosis (ARC).

Health - Psychology - 14.12.2023
Body dissatisfaction linked with depression risk in children
Body dissatisfaction at age 11 is linked to increased risk of depression by age 14, finds a new longitudinal study led by UCL researchers. The findings, published in The Lancet Psychiatry , show that body image concerns explain a large proportion of an association between body mass index (BMI) and depression in children, particularly in girls.

Health - Social Sciences - 14.12.2023
Study explores accuracy of computerised ADHD test
A new study cautions against using the QbTest as a standalone diagnostic or screening tool for ADHD. Rather, the study authors highlight the intended use of the QbTest as a component of a full clinical assessment, since it could help clinicians reach faster diagnostic decisions and reduce waiting lists.

Health - 14.12.2023
Researchers call for changes to tackle chronic pain in children
Researchers call for changes to tackle chronic pain in children
Dr Abbie Jordan from Bath's Centre for Pain Research was involved in the new analysis published via the Cochrane Library. Published on Thursday 14 December 2023 Last updated on Thursday 14 December 2023 Health psychologists at the University of Bath are calling for an overhaul of services for children living with chronic pain.

Life Sciences - Health - 14.12.2023
Calls to assess neurological symptoms of rare genetic disorder
Neurological signs and symptoms of the different subgroups of a rare condition, called xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), have been systematically characterised for the first time by researchers at UCL and the UK National Xeroderma Pigmentosum Service. XP is a group of rare genetic disorders, affecting around 120 people in the UK, in which patients are not able to repair the damage in their DNA caused by ultraviolet radiation (UVR).

Health - Veterinary - 14.12.2023
New research confirms extreme welfare issues in Shar Pei, the sandpaper skin dog breed
Last Updated: 14 Dec 2023 00:01:45 New research from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) has found that in-turned eyelids and ear disorders are the most common health conditions in Shar Pei dogs in the UK; both resulting from the breed's characteristic loose, thickened and folded skin. This research highlights that urgent action is needed to discourage the normalisation and high public demand for dogs such as Shar Pei with extreme body shapes that threaten the dog's welfare.

Health - 13.12.2023
Increased hormone level linked with nausea during pregnancy
A link between increased levels of a hormone and nausea during pregnancy, including morning sickness, is reported in new research A link between increased levels of a hormone and nausea during pregnancy, including morning sickness, is reported in new research. The study, which is published in Nature and led by the University of Cambridge in collaboration with researchers from the University of Glasgow and others, sheds light on these complex metabolic processes and offer potential avenues for treatment going forward.

Health - 11.12.2023
Risk of dying from cancer varies widely across regions in England
The risk of dying of cancer in England varies hugely depending on where people live, according to new research led by Imperial. In an analysis of mortality rates for 10 forms of cancer with the largest death toll for men and women, researchers found the risk of dying from cancer varies widely depending on which district in England patients live.

Health - Social Sciences - 08.12.2023
Engaging heterosexual men more effectively could slash HIV infections in Uganda
Engaging heterosexual men more effectively could slash HIV infections in Uganda
A study looking at 15 years of HIV transmission and suppression in Uganda reveals how closing gender gaps in treatment could slash infection rates. Providing more heterosexual men with easy access to HIV treatment and care could help to suppress the virus and rapidly cut transmission to their female partners, shows a new study published in Nature Microbiology .

Life Sciences - Health - 08.12.2023
Ancient DNA reveals how a chicken virus evolved to become more deadly
An international team of scientists led by geneticists and disease biologists from the University of Oxford and LMU Munich have used ancient DNA to trace the evolution of Marek's Disease Virus (MDV). This global pathogen causes fatal infections in unvaccinated chickens and costs the poultry industry over $1 billion per year.

Health - Pharmacology - 06.12.2023
Researchers redesign future mRNA therapeutics to prevent potentially harmful immune responses
Researchers have discovered that misreading of therapeutic mRNAs by the cell's decoding machinery can cause an unintended immune response in the body. They have identified the sequence within the mRNA that causes this to occur and found a way to prevent 'off-target' immune responses to enable the safer design of future mRNA therapeutics.

Health - Pharmacology - 05.12.2023
Individually targeted therapies may improve treatment for psychosis
A paper from the University of Southampton examining how best to treat psychosis has concluded that a greater range of individually targeted therapies could improve outcomes for patients. The research questions if Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBTp) for psychosis should remain the dominant treatment and suggests that, in the future, big data and artificial intelligence may help to develop a range of more bespoke therapies.
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