Scientists discover role of skin in spreading leishmaniasis

Image result for Scientists discover role of skin in spreading leishmaniasisScientists at the University of York have discovered that parasites responsible for leishmaniasis – a globally occurring neglected tropical disease spread by sand flies – are mainly acquired from the skin rather than a person’s blood.

Visceral leishmaniasis is a parasitic infection that kills 20-40 thousand people each year across 56 countries, mainly in the developing world. There is no vaccine and drugs are prohibitively expensive or toxic.

Previously it was assumed that sand flies acquired the disease parasite directly from a host’s blood, through biting an infected person before spreading the disease to uninfected people in subsequent bites.

However, the number of parasites found in blood has often been puzzlingly low, leading some to question whether there is another source of parasites for transmission.

Now, mathematicians, experimental biologists, and immunologists have revealed a ‘patchy landscape of parasites’ found on carriers’ skin that determines how many parasites are picked up by sand flies.

Using mathematical modeling, they showed that some areas of skin can contain particularly high numbers of the parasite, while other areas may not.

This means that whether a sand fly becomes infected or not depends on where they bite a person.

This breakthrough is significant as it suggests current methods of treating leishmaniasis are too simple, as disease detection and treatment often focuses on levels of the parasite in blood samples.

The research also stresses that more attention should be focused on developing treatments that affect parasites in the skin, if the cycle of transmission is to be interrupted.

Johannes Doehl, Post-Doctoral Research Associate in York’s Centre for Immunology and Infection and lead author of the study, said: “Currently, to assess treatment success in visceral leishmaniasis, clinicians focus on monitoring parasite levels in a host’s blood.

“However, we now have conclusive proof that measuring parasites in the skin, not just the blood, is critical when assessing possible treatments. Clinical studies and elimination campaigns need to take this into account, and in particular measure how treatments affect the patchy landscape of parasites in the skin.”

Dr. Jon Pitchford, Reader in York’s Departments of Biology and Mathematics, said: “To effectively control leishmaniasis, we don’t just need to cure the disease in patients, we must also understand and try and break the transmission cycle. This research is the first step towards improving the treatment process and demonstrates how the application of mathematics can help solve important problems in medicine.”

[“Source-news-medical”]

How to keep skin looking young? We asked the experts

Image result for How to keep skin looking young? We asked the experts

The beauty market is awash with anti-aging products, and the lists of ingredients in serums and creams that promise to slow down or reverse that process can be confounding.

Take a look at the fine print and you might encounter Vitamin C or green tea extract or alpha-hydroxy acids. Can anything make a difference?

We checked in with a handful of experts, including Dr. Gregory Henderson, a dermatologist and clinical instructor in dermatology at UCLA, in our search for answers.

By the way, cosmetics companies test their products extensively. The Food and Drug Administration does not test products, but can take action against a manufacturer if it has concerns over product safety.

Charcoal

Activated charcoal, which can absorb some toxins, has been used to treat alcohol and drug poisoning in emergency rooms for decades. But in the last few years, the beauty industry has embraced it, touting its ability to absorb dirt and oil. Can it be effective?

“When used as part of a mask or strip,” Henderson says, “the charcoal may help remove sebum and keratinous debris from skin pores.”

Clay and mud

Mud is sometimes used in masks that are used to hydrate the skin and is acknowledged by many in the medical community for its potential to help with skin issues. “Mud therapy,” says Henderson, “is an ancient tradition and historically has been used for inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis.”

Clay is one of the most common ingredients found in beauty products, and experts tend to agree that it can serve a useful purpose, if used according to directions. Clay masks, designed to remove oil, dirt and dead skin cells, can be used as a delivery mechanism for ingredients — oils and emollients, for example — to ease dry skin.

Sodium hyaluronate

Sodium hyaluronate, which is used in all sorts of wrinkle and skin-repair products, is a “cousin of hyaluronic acid, a naturally occurring substance in the skin which helps hang on to water and helps give the skin a younger appearance,” says UCLA dermatologist Dr. Hayley Goldbach.

“Dermatologists often inject hyaluronic acid fillers into skin, resulting in more volume and a reduction in fine lines.” Sodium hyaluronate, designed to be applied to the skin, “has not been shown to have the same anti-aging or collagen-boosting properties as injectable hyaluronic acid.” But it continues to be included in various medical studies and papers that are focused on the efficacy of various anti-aging products.

Alpha hydroxy acids

According to Medscape, an online reference source used by medical professionals, AHAs (including glycolic and citric acids) “improve skin texture and reduce the signs of aging by promoting cell shedding” in the outer layers of the skin. But “the mechanism of the action is not completely understood.”

Caffeine

Caffeine is used in cosmetics and cosmeceuticals to counter a number of skin conditions, including the appearance of cellulite. It works, in theory, “by stimulating lipolysis — the breaking down of fat — in the skin and by improving the microcirculation,” Henderson says.

Caffeine is also found in some eye creams, promoted by cosmetic lines for its ability to shrink blood vessels under the eyes, although “its role has not been well studied.”

Green tea extract

In the last few years, there’s been a surge in the use of green tea extract in beauty products. WebMD reports that “the ingredients in tea can reduce sun damage and may protect you from skin cancer when you put it on your skin.” Henderson says that “a study combining green tree extract, caffeine and resveratrol showed reduced facial redness.”

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the most popular ingredients in anti-aging products, promoted as something that can protect cells from free radicals, which can damage cell DNA, increase signs of aging and lead to cancer.

Some experts say the antioxidants found in vitamin C can assist the body’s production of collagen. But Henderson cautions: “While limited studies have shown that topical vitamin C may limit photoaging, many current preparations … are not formulated to allow the vitamin C to effectively penetrate the skin. Also unless protected from the air, most preparation became inactive without hours of opening.”

Peptides

Peptides, formed from amino acids, are “cellular messengers” of sorts and are commonly used in beauty products. According to Henderson, signal peptides may stimulate collagen production. Carrier peptides “may aid in the delivery of copper to the skin and promote smoother skin.” (Copper is said to help develop collagen and elastin.)

Algae

Many of us associate algae with unpleasant encounters in the water (seaweed, pond scum, etc.), but algae have been used in traditional diets and folk medicine for centuries.

In the beauty world, you might read about ingredients such as blue marine algae or brown algae extract. You won’t find universal agreement on their effectiveness in cosmeceuticals, but an article in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology suggests brown seaweed “could be used as a potential cosmetic ingredient to make skin firmer and smoother.”

The bottom line?

Some of the ingredients listed in the fine print on cosmetics and cosmeceuticals may actually help your skin. But what the experts really hope you’ll indulge in are rest, exercise, a healthy diet and sunscreen.

[“Source-latimes”]

I Got A $1,200 Virtual Reality Facial From John Mayer’s Favorite Skin Line

“I’m getting a $1,200 virtual reality facial that uses John Mayer’s favorite European skin-care products tomorrow — and it’s in an oxygen bubble,” I told my boyfriend last week.
Most men outside of the beauty industry would have thought this was odd conversation, but after seven months of dating, I have my boyfriend on a dedicated skin routine that’s kept his complexion clear and bright — and he’s into it. Meanwhile, he’s exposed me to all that virtual reality, or VR, has to offer, including games, experiences, and a working knowledge of how the technology will inevitably change the future of media — and I’m into it.
So when I heard about a treatment that brings these two seemingly opposite experiences together, I had to try it out.
You may know Natura Bissé as the Spanish brand front and center in John Mayer’s slightly-satirical stab at beauty vlogging last year. In the viral Snapchat videos, he shared his most effective hacks for better skin, including Mayer-isms like CNZs, or “crucial necessity zones” that should be always covered with face cream (so, basically just everywhere) and D.A.T., or “direct application technique,” which involves squirting face cream directly onto skin to limit product waste on fingers. (Spoiler: This is not actually effective.)
Jokes aside, the reason these videos went viral is not because of his application techniques, but because his entire routine rang in at a whopping $1,457. But hold onto your debit cards, because this year, the brand’s implementing a treatment that’s just as novel — and nearly as expensive.
Called The Mindful Touch Experience, it is, according to the brand, “the most innovative and trailblazing venture within the spa sector, in which the results of Natura Bissé’s cosmetics are combined with the most advanced technology.” So how does it work? “Through virtual reality, mindfulness and the therapist’s expertise – the touch – we invite the client to reconnect with the here and now, to relax their body, to awaken their senses and to experience the pleasure of beauty in a more intense way,” the official statement reads. Still confused? I was, too.
Let’s get this out of the way first: At $1,200 for one hour, the facial is far from affordable. However, this has less to do with the bubble itself or the VR technology and more to do with the fact that the brand’s products are just really pricey. Even though I was getting it at a comped press appointment, I still felt a little guilty.
The brand is famous for its bubbles and there are only a few, so you have to catch one while it’s on tour. (Yes, the bubble has more expensive tickets and fewer tour dates than Bieber.) It’s large enough for a bed, a table, and your aesthetician, and it’s filled with 99% pure oxygen, which it supposed to help with the absorption of products. Once you enter said bubble, you remove your robe and lie down, then affix the VR headset.
For eight minutes, you’re walked through a virtual reality experience — you travel through the ocean, wander around a brain, and are led on what is essentially a guided meditation to relax and let go of stress. Meanwhile, your aesthetician is floating essential oils under your nose and massaging your head and limbs to sync with what you’re seeing. It was pretty amazing.
But then, after eight minutes, the headset comes off and the facial begins. As far as facials go, this one was pretty standard: cleanse, tone, mask, peel (but no extractions, unfortunately). As a wonderful added bonus, though, the guided meditation continued, so I was reminded throughout the experience to clear my mind and stay present.
“I’m getting a $1,200 virtual reality facial that uses John Mayer’s favorite European skin-care products tomorrow — and it’s in an oxygen bubble,” I told my boyfriend last week.
Most men outside of the beauty industry would have thought this was odd conversation, but after seven months of dating, I have my boyfriend on a dedicated skin routine that’s kept his complexion clear and bright — and he’s into it. Meanwhile, he’s exposed me to all that virtual reality, or VR, has to offer, including games, experiences, and a working knowledge of how the technology will inevitably change the future of media — and I’m into it.
So when I heard about a treatment that brings these two seemingly opposite experiences together, I had to try it out.
You may know Natura Bissé as the Spanish brand front and center in John Mayer’s slightly-satirical stab at beauty vlogging last year. In the viral Snapchat videos, he shared his most effective hacks for better skin, including Mayer-isms like CNZs, or “crucial necessity zones” that should be always covered with face cream (so, basically just everywhere) and D.A.T., or “direct application technique,” which involves squirting face cream directly onto skin to limit product waste on fingers. (Spoiler: This is not actually effective.)
Jokes aside, the reason these videos went viral is not because of his application techniques, but because his entire routine rang in at a whopping $1,457. But hold onto your debit cards, because this year, the brand’s implementing a treatment that’s just as novel — and nearly as expensive.
Called The Mindful Touch Experience, it is, according to the brand, “the most innovative and trailblazing venture within the spa sector, in which the results of Natura Bissé’s cosmetics are combined with the most advanced technology.” So how does it work? “Through virtual reality, mindfulness and the therapist’s expertise – the touch – we invite the client to reconnect with the here and now, to relax their body, to awaken their senses and to experience the pleasure of beauty in a more intense way,” the official statement reads. Still confused? I was, too.
My Time In The Bubble
Let’s get this out of the way first: At $1,200 for one hour, the facial is far from affordable. However, this has less to do with the bubble itself or the VR technology and more to do with the fact that the brand’s products are just really pricey. Even though I was getting it at a comped press appointment, I still felt a little guilty.
The brand is famous for its bubbles and there are only a few, so you have to catch one while it’s on tour. (Yes, the bubble has more expensive tickets and fewer tour dates than Bieber.) It’s large enough for a bed, a table, and your aesthetician, and it’s filled with 99% pure oxygen, which it supposed to help with the absorption of products. Once you enter said bubble, you remove your robe and lie down, then affix the VR headset.
For eight minutes, you’re walked through a virtual reality experience — you travel through the ocean, wander around a brain, and are led on what is essentially a guided meditation to relax and let go of stress. Meanwhile, your aesthetician is floating essential oils under your nose and massaging your head and limbs to sync with what you’re seeing. It was pretty amazing.
But then, after eight minutes, the headset comes off and the facial begins. As far as facials go, this one was pretty standard: cleanse, tone, mask, peel (but no extractions, unfortunately). As a wonderful added bonus, though, the guided meditation continued, so I was reminded throughout the experience to clear my mind and stay present.
The Results
The facial was great — my skin looked and felt radiant, soft, and hydrated for days (for $1,200 it had better, right?), but it wasn’t unlike anything I’ve ever tried. What excited me most was seeing a beauty brand find a way to use VR to relax the client and add another layer to a classic spa experience.
The headset (a Samsung) and the content weren’t the best quality I’ve seen, but in the context of where I was (nude, in an oxygen bubble, being fawned over in the middle of a weekday afternoon), it was pretty great.
After all, from Coachella installations to the future of surfing Facebook or watching YouTube, VR is on the horizon — and it’s about time the beauty world dove in. Once they figure out how to do a facial with a headset on the entire time? Then things will get real sci-fi.
Natura Bissé just upped the game, so I guess it’s your move, Mayer.
[“Source-refinery29.”]

Bateman Skincare Is a Brand For Handsome Young Men Who Are Young and Handsome

Image result for Bateman Skincare Is a Brand For Handsome Young Men Who Are Young and HandsomeYou know how pretty much every pop culture film is being made into a musical? Imagine that… but now with beauty. Instead of breaking scenes down into dance-y numbers and jazz hands, the concept is translated into one thematic element, this one being skin care.

Bateman Skincare takes its name from the titular character in American Psycho, Patrick Bateman. The 1991 Brett Easton Ellis novel turned year-2000 film, now turned conceptual skin care line is a highly edited collection of your six essential products: a rose hip and seaweed cleanser, an herbal balancing toner, AHA exfoliating gel, hyaluronic serum, hyaluronic moisturizer, and a zinc + clay mask.

I would imagine that a psychopathic narcissist would absolutely follow a six-plus-step skin-care routine, but Bateman Skincare errs more general; the brand claims a unisex approach to skin care that focuses on the individual, You are your own best asset printed on their card. “One of the most memorable parts of the book and movie revolves around skincare and the importance of having a routine; this adherence to structure is a cornerstone of our brand.” It also happens to be the cornerstone of any good skin-care regimen that you expect to see results from.

The line is modestly packaged in clinical amber bottles and dare I say, vaguely early 90s-typeface (I don’t know. I’m a beauty editor, not a graphic designer). Judging by the products’ ingredients, however, it all seems fairly legit from a glance — simple pared-down formulas with botanically-derived ingredients featuring face-faves, hyaluronic acid, squalene, seaweed, rose hip seed oil and witch hazel.

I asked a cosmetic chemist (who asked to remain unnamed) his opinion about the line and he gave it a blasé thumbs-up. “I don’t think this line will help much with someone with acne or any specific skin concerns. I think it’s aimed more to handsome young men who are already handsome and young.”

… Kind of like the chiseled Mr. Bateman himself, who now that I think about it, is a bit parallel to the prototypical Glossier girl… but a dude — conventionally attractive, naturally fit, and effortlessly chic yet with a staunchly disciplined focus on grooming aesthetics that gives the appearance of effortlessness.

However in an ironic yet pleasant turn, Bateman Skincare products are cruelty-free, unlike the guy it’s based on.

[“Source-allure”]

4 Natural Skin-Care Ingredients That’ll Transform Your Skin

Image result for 4 Natural Skin-Care Ingredients That'll Transform Your SkinThey come from small red berries and evergreen forests, but these skin-care ingredients can go head-to-head with their lab-grown peers. Meet the natural wonders that are generating buzz — and transforming complexions.

Manuka Honey

You’ve probably seen headlines like: “I Washed My Face With Honey and It Was the Most Amazing Thing Ever.” Though we don’t actually drizzle the stuff on our face as if it’s a parfait, honey as a skin-care ingredient — specifically manuka honey from New Zealand or Australia — is, in fact, amazing. Unlike the antioxidants in other honey varieties, “the ones in manuka honey are very strong, so they don’t get destroyed as easily,” says Jeannette Graf, a dermatologist in Great Neck, New York. Add to that the fact that manuka honey is super moisturizing and suddenly smearing it on directly from the jar doesn’t seem so crazy after all. “It’s also antibacterial, which means it’s good for acne,” says Graf. Kiehl’s Pure Vitality Skin Renewing Cream relies on the ingredient’s high polyphenol content to protect the skin barrier while moisturizing, and Kate Somerville Goat Milk De-Puffing Eye Balm ($38) pairs manuka honey with peptides to soften lines and leave skin dewy.

Bearberry

Also known by what’s surely a Balderdash word (kinnikinnick), the bearberry plant is one of nature’s most potent skin brighteners. In addition to antioxidants, bearberry extract contains arbutin, which acts a lot like hydroquinone (the most effective ingredient for fading dark spots). “Both inhibit the tyrosinase enzyme involved in pigment production,” says Jordana Herschthal, a dermatologist in Boca Raton, Florida. Although naturally occurring arbutin isn’t quite as potent as hydroquinone, it may be safer, she says. (You shouldn’t use hydroquinone when you’re pregnant or nursing.) Bearberry should help fade dark spots in about four to six weeks. Since brightening ingredients are more effective when they’re paired with a retinoid, products with both (like Allies of Skin Bright Future Overnight Facial, $114, and Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic Acid + Retinol Brightening Solution, $88) will get you glowier, faster.

Bakuchiol

You may have heard us mention retinol, oh, once or twice. The magical ingredient has been smoothing lines, fading spots, and busting acne since before most millennials were born. Well: “Bakuchiol is like a natural version of retinol,” says cosmetic chemist Ni’Kita Wilson, who likes it in Whish Recovering Night Cream ($72). The extract comes from the babchi herb, which is used in Chinese medicine to treat skin conditions. “The data is really impressive,” says Wilson. “You get similar efficacy from bakuchiol [as retinol], without the drying side effects.” And bakuchiol is an antioxidant, so “it can be a better choice when you want both anti-aging and skin brightening,” adds cosmetic chemist Ginger King.

Pine

We’re not talking about any old evergreen. The pine that will transform skin must be the French maritime variety that grows in the Mediterranean region. Research has suggested that extract from the bark of Pinus pinaster can accelerate wound healing and reduce scar formation. “Because it offers powerful antioxidant protection from free radical damage, it’s also great for smoothing aging and photodamaged skin,” says cosmetic chemist Joseph Cincotta. (Try Perricone MD High Potency Eye Lift, $100.) If you’re concerned more about breakouts than crow’s-feet, this specific pine is also astringent and mattifies oily skin. (Try Boscia Luminizing Black Mask, $34.) When ingested — like in the supplement pycnogenol — it delivers a megadose of antioxidants to calm inflammation, protect collagen, and improve hydration levels in the skin, says Cincotta.

The Best DIYs

Laying seaweed on your face isn’t going to do anything except make you smell weird. You have to isolate botanical extracts to change your skin­ — and pulsing an avocado in a Vitamix won’t do the trick, says Graf. The exceptions: six raw ingredients that you can pick up at Whole Foods and smear right on your face for effective DIY skin care.

1. To calm breakouts: East Indian sandalwood oil is an essential oil that’s antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and ideal for shrinking pimples, says Graf. It can be irritating if you put it directly on skin, though, so dilute one or two drops in six ounces of skin-soothing almond oil.

2. To plump wrinkles and rehab dry skin: “Rose hip–seed oil contains a natural form of retinol to help improve fine lines,” says Marius Morariu, a cofounder of Tracie Martyn skin care. Evening primrose oil is high in omega-6, which is great for severely chapped skin.

3. To get a glow: Many essential oils are too irritating to apply right on your skin, but jojoba, almond, and apricot oils are gentle and absorb easily, making them ideal for moisturizing.

Pregnancy PSA on Naturals

Many women switch to natural skin-care products when they’re pregnant or breastfeeding to avoid exposing their baby to certain synthetic — and potentially harmful — ingredients. But seeing plant extracts or essential oils on an ingredient list doesn’t guarantee safety: “There are natural ingredients, like peppermint oil, clary sage oil, rosemary oil, and juniper oil, [in bath soaks and face serums] that have been shown to cause issues with lactation and early labor,” says Herschthal, who has studied the effects of skin-care ingredients on pregnant women. If you want to use natural products when you’re pregnant, stay away from those ingredients, she says.

All products in this story meet Allure’s natural standards: no parabens, petroleum, mineral oil, phthalates, aluminum, talc, sodium laurel sulfate, triclosan, formaldehyde, toluene, or chemical sunscreens.

A version of this article originally appeared in the July 2017 issue of Allure. To get your copy, head to newsstands or subscribe now.

[“Source-allur”]

Diabetes can affect your skin too!

Diabetes can affect your skin too! (Thinkstock photos/Getty Images)Diabetes can affect your skin too! (Thinkstock photos/Getty Images)
Diabetes is a very common problem these days.

Though people think excessive intake of sugar and sweetened food lead to diabetes, the reality is our unbalanced lifestyle also play a significant role in contributing to the condition of diabetes. Many of us are not even aware that apart from affecting our body, diabetes can play havoc on our skin.

Skin Specialist Dr Rohit Batra from Derma World Skin Clinic shared information on how diabetes can affect our skin and how we can combat this problem.

Some common skin infections due to diabetes are fungal infection, itching, vitiligo, blisters, Digital Sclerosis, foot ulcer and others.

Fungal Infection: ‘Candida albicans’ is a painful fungal infection commonly found in diabetic people. The infection causes red rashes on the skin and leads to itching and pain. Jock itch is another fungal infection amongst the diabetic patients.

Treatment- The right treatment of the infection is to stop ignoring the problem. Do not ignore the infection right from the beginning and immediately contact the doctor at the first sign of it.

Itching: Itching seems to be a common problem; however, it can be severe and problematic. Itching in the lower part of the legs and feet is common among diabetic patients.

Treatment- Applying a good moisturizer is the best way to control itching. Slather a good amount of moisturizer on the affected area and avoid scratching to get relief from itching.

Vitiligo: Experts suggest that vitiligo is also caused due to Type 1 Diabetes. The cells responsible for the brown pigment on the skin get damaged in Vitiligo which leads to white patches on the chest, face, and hands etc.

Treatment- Light therapy is used to treat Vitiligo. Always make sure to use a sunscreen with an SPF 30 while stepping out in the sun.

Blisters: Blisters are common among diabetic people and appear on the hands, legs and the backside of the fingers. The good thing is that they are painless.

Treatment- Blisters heal on their own within one to two weeks. However, if you feel any problem, contact your doctor immediately.

Digital Sclerosis: Almost one third people with Type 1 diabetes struggle with the issue of digital sclerosis. The main symptom of this condition is thickened area in the skin which gradually becomes very tight. Due to this, it becomes very difficult to move joints especially knees, fingers and elbow.

Treatment- The only solution is to control the blood sugar level.

Foot Ulcer: In the extreme stages of diabetes, a special nerve gets damaged due to which the person doesn’t feel any sensation in the foot. Even a little scratch on the foot takes the form of a sore and may take weeks to heal.

Treatment- As soon as you notice this con

.source”cnbc”

Gene Therapy May Treat Alzheimer’s

Gene Therapy May Treat Alzheimer's

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Gene Therapy May Treat Alzheimer’s
Delivering a gene directly into brain may offer a potential new therapy for halting Alzheimer’s .
LONDON: Researchers at the Imperial College in London have found that delivering a specific gene via an injection directly into the brain may offer a potential new therapy for halting the progress of Alzheimer’s disease, especially when treated in its early stages.

In the study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team used a type of modified virus to deliver a gene to brain cells of mice.

“Although these findings are very early they suggest this gene therapy may have potential therapeutic use for patients,” said senior study author Magdalena Sastre.

Previous studies by the same team suggest this gene, called PGC1 – alpha, may prevent the formation of a protein called amyloid-beta peptide in cells in the lab.

Amyloid-beta peptide is the main component of amyloid plaques, the sticky clumps of protein found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease. These plaques are thought to trigger the death of brain cells.

The modified virus used in the experiments was called a lentivirus vector, and is commonly used in gene therapy explained Professor Nicholas Mazarakis, co-author of the study.

In the new study, the team injected the virus, containing the gene PGC-1 – alpha, into two areas of the brain in mice susceptible to Alzheimer’s disease.
The areas targeted were the hippocampus and the cortex, as these are the first regions to develop amyloid plaques in Alzheimer’s disease.

The animals were treated at the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.

After four months, the team found that mice who received the gene had very few amyloid plaques, compared with the untreated mice, who had multiple plaques in their brain.

Furthermore, the treated mice performed as well in memory tasks as healthy mice.

The team also discovered there was no loss of brain cells in the hippocampus of the mice who received the gene treatment.

In addition to this, the treated mice had a reduction in the number of glial cells, which in Alzheimer’s disease can release toxic inflammatory substances that cause further cell damage.

 

Flexible wearable electronic skin patch offers new way to monitor alcohol levelsFlexible,wearable,electronic,skin,patch,offers,new,way,to,monitor,alcohol,levels

This flexible wearable sensor can be worn on the arm to detect alcohol level.
Credit: UC San Diego

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a flexible wearable sensor that can accurately measure a person’s blood alcohol level from sweat and transmit the data wirelessly to a laptop, smartphone or other mobile device. The device can be worn on the skin and could be used by doctors and police officers for continuous, non-invasive and real-time monitoring of blood alcohol content.

The device consists of a temporary tattoo — which sticks to the skin, induces sweat and electrochemically detects the alcohol level — and a portable flexible electronic circuit board, which is connected to the tattoo by a magnet and can communicate the information to a mobile device via Bluetooth. The work, led by nanoengineering professor Joseph Wang and electrical engineering professor Patrick Mercier, both at UC San Diego, was published recently in the journal ACS Sensors.

“Lots of accidents on the road are caused by drunk driving. This technology provides an accurate, convenient and quick way to monitor alcohol consumption to help prevent people from driving while intoxicated,” Wang said. The device could be integrated with a car’s alcohol ignition interlocks, or friends could use it to check up on each other before handing over the car keys, he added.

“When you’re out at a party or at a bar, this sensor could send alerts to your phone to let you know how much you’ve been drinking,” said Jayoung Kim, a materials science and engineering PhD student in Wang’s group and one of the paper’s co-first authors.

Blood alcohol concentration is the most accurate indicator of a person’s alcohol level, but measuring it requires pricking a finger. Breathalyzers, which are the most commonly used devices to indirectly estimate blood alcohol concentration, are non-invasive, but they can give false readouts. For example, the alcohol level detected in a person’s breath right after taking a drink would typically appear higher than that person’s actual blood alcohol concentration. A person could also fool a breathalyzer into detecting a lower alcohol level by using mouthwash.

Recent research has shown that blood alcohol concentration can also be estimated by measuring alcohol levels in what’s called insensible sweat — perspiration that happens before it’s perceived as moisture on the skin. But this measurement can be up to two hours behind the actual blood alcohol reading. On the other hand, the alcohol level in sensible sweat — the sweat that’s typically seen — is a better real-time indicator of the blood alcohol concentration, but so far the systems that can measure this are neither portable nor fit for wearing on the body.

Now, UC San Diego researchers have developed an alcohol sensor that’s wearable, portable and could accurately monitor alcohol level in sweat within 15 minutes.

“What’s also innovative about this technology is that the wearer doesn’t need to be exercising or sweating already. The user can put on the patch and within a few minutes get a reading that’s well correlated to his or her blood alcohol concentration. Such a device hasn’t been available until now,” Mercier said.

How it works

Wang and Mercier, the director and co-director, respectively, of the UC San Diego Center for Wearable Sensors, collaborated to develop the device. Wang’s group fabricated the tattoo, equipped with screen-printed electrodes and a small hydrogel patch containing pilocarpine, a drug that passes through the skin and induces sweat.

Mercier’s group developed the printed flexible electronic circuit board that powers the tattoo and can communicate wirelessly with a mobile device. His team also developed the magnetic connector that attaches the electronic circuit board to the tattoo, as well as the device’s phone app.

“This device can use a Bluetooth connection, which is something a breathalyzer can’t do. We’ve found a way to make the electronics portable and wireless, which are important for practical, real-life use,” said Somayeh Imani, an electrical engineering PhD student in Mercier’s lab and a co-first author on the paper.

The tattoo works first by releasing pilocarpine to induce sweat. Then, the sweat comes into contact with an electrode coated with alcohol oxidase, an enzyme that selectively reacts with alcohol to generate hydrogen peroxide, which is electrochemically detected. That information is sent to the electronic circuit board as electrical signals. The data are communicated wirelessly to a mobile device.

Putting the tattoo to the test

Researchers tested the alcohol sensor on 9 healthy volunteers who wore the tattoo on their arms before and after consuming an alcoholic beverage (either a bottle of beer or glass of red wine). The readouts accurately reflected the wearers’ blood alcohol concentrations.

The device also gave accurate readouts even after repeated bending and shaking. This shows that the sensor won’t be affected by the wearer’s movements, researchers said.

As a next step, the team is developing a device that could continuously monitor alcohol levels for 24 hours.

Many top selling sunscreens don’t offer adequate protection

About 40 percent of the top selling sunscreens on Amazon.com don’t meet the American Academy of Dermatology’s guidelines for sunscreens. This was largely due to a lack of water or sweat resistance, according to a new Northwestern Medicine study.

The study also found consumers spend up to 3,000 percent more for products that provide the same sunscreen protection as lower-cost sunscreens.

Northwestern investigators wanted to identify high performing products that are affordable and popular to know what to recommend to their patients and, hopefully, increase the likelihood of their using it.

Sunscreen use is low for adolescents and adults. And, if they do wear sunscreen, they don’t use enough or apply it frequently enough. Cost and “cosmetic elegance” of the product — how it feels on the skin, color or scent — may be factors.

“We are often asked to recommend sunscreens, and we wanted to know what consumers prefer,” said lead study author Dr. Steve Xu, a resident in dermatology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “This way we are suggesting popular products they will actually use that will protect them.”

“You don’t want to wear a chalky, greasy, terrible-smelling product, even if your dermatologist recommends it, ” Xu said. “This gave us insight into what consumers prefer, so it can guide our recommendations and be cost conscious.”

Xu said he was surprised at the 3,000 percent difference in price for products that provided basically the same protection.

To identify the most popular sunscreens, investigators looked at the top rated 1 percent of the 6,500 sunscreens with four or more stars sold on Amazon.com. They came up with the 65 top-rated products. The goal was to identify high performing products that are affordable and popular to encourage adherence to sunscreen use.

Their median price was $3.32 an ounce; median SPF was 35; 92 percent had broad-spectrum coverage claims and 62 percent were labeled as water or sweat resistant. The cheapest sunscreen was 68 cents an ounce and the most expensive was $24 an ounce.

The study was published July 6 in the journal JAMA Dermatology.

Sunscreens are particularly important for individuals with certain dermatological conditions such as transplant patients who have photosensitive skin due to the drugs they must take or individuals with certain dermatological conditions, Xu said.

“Dermatologists should have a voice in consumer choices when it comes to skin health, a voice that takes the patients’ best interests at heart and is not influenced by marketing claims,” Xu said.

[“source-gsmarena”]

Continual fatigue syndrome is for your intestine, now not your head

Physicians had been mystified by Chronic fatigue syndrome, a condition where regular exertion leads todebilitating fatigue that isn’t always alleviated with the aid of relaxation. There aren’t any regarded triggers, and diagnosis requires prolonged assessments administered by means of an professional.

Now, for the first time, Cornell University researchers record they have got recognized biological markers of the disorder in intestine bacteria and anti-inflammatory microbial marketers within the blood.

In a study published June 23 within the journal Microbiome, the crew describes how they efficientlyidentified myalgic encephalomyeletis/Persistent fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) in eighty three percentage ofpatients thru stool samples and blood work, supplying a noninvasive analysis and a step towards expertisethe motive of the sickness.

“Our paintings demonstrates that the intestine bacterial microbiome in Persistent fatigue syndrome sufferersis not regular, possibly leading to gastrointestinal and anti inflammatory signs in victims of the disease,”said Maureen Hanson, the freedom Hyde Bailey Professor inside the Branch of Molecular Biology and Genetics at Cornell and the paper’s senior creator. “Furthermore, our detection of a biological abnormalityoffers in addition evidence in opposition to the ridiculous idea that the sickness is mental in starting place.”

in the future, we should see this approach as a complement to other noninvasive diagnoses, but if we havea better idea of what is going on with those intestine microbes and sufferers, perhaps clinicians should do not forget converting diets, using prebiotics consisting of dietary fibers or probiotics to assist treat theailment,” stated Ludovic Giloteaux, a postdoctoral researcher and primary author of the study.

within the study, Ithaca campus researchers collaborated with Dr. Susan Levine, an ME/CFS professional inBig apple City, who recruited 48 humans diagnosed with ME/CFS and 39 healthful controls to provide stool and blood samples.

The researchers sequenced areas of microbial DNA from the stool samples to perceive distinct kinds ofbacteria. Common, the variety of sorts of bacteria changed into greatly reduced and there were fewer bacterial species recognized to be 07b031025f5f96dfa8443f843db463b6 in ME/CFS sufferers in comparisonwith healthful humans, an observation also visible in human beings with Crohn’s sickness and ulcerative colitis.

At the identical time, the researchers found precise markers of irritation inside the blood, probable because of a leaky intestine from intestinal problems that allow micro organism to enter the blood, Giloteaux said.

micro organism in the blood will cause an immune response, that could get worse symptoms.

The researchers have no proof to distinguish whether the altered intestine microbiome is a reason or awhether it’s miles a consequence of ailment, Giloteaux brought.

inside the future, the research team will look for proof of viruses and fungi in the gut, to see whether this type of or an affiliation of these together with micro organism can be inflicting or contributing to theinfection.