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Antioxidant could lead to new treatment for multiple sclerosis
Date: 2013-12-27 15:17:50

More than a dozen years ago, scientists developed the antioxidant MitoQ to fight damage within human cells. Recently, researchers at Oregon Health and Sciences University discovered through lab tests that this same drug helped with symptoms of a multiple sclerosis-like disease found in animals.

Published in Biochimica et Biophysica Acta Molecular Basis of Disease, the study's team was led by P. Hemachandra Reddy, Ph.D., from the Division of Neuroscience at OHSU's Oregon National Primate Research Center. As part of their study, the scientists had mice contract a disease similar to MS in humans called experimental autoimmune encephalomyeltisis, or EAE. It is a disease of the nervous system in rodents that is commonly studied as an animal model of MS. Afterward, the mice were split into four separate groups based on specific parameters: one group had EAE only, one was administered the antioxidant then given EAE, one was induced with EAE then given MitoQ, and finally, the control group had no disease or treatment.

After two weeks of observation and blood testing, it was discovered that mice treated with MitoQ both before and after being given EAE exhibited signs of increased activity in the neurons of the spinal cord, a location of the brain most commonly affected by MS. It was clear that treatment with the antioxidant drastically improved the quality of health in the mice. These results could lead to a completely new method of treatment for humans living with MS, which affects more than 2 million people around the world.

"The MitoQ also significantly reduced inflammation of the neurons and reduced demyelination. These results are really exciting. This could be a new front in the fight against MS," explained Reddy.

Although there were significant results in their study, human trials are still years away from being conducted. Next, Reddy and his team will be examining how MitoQ protects the brain cells of the mice with EAE.

What is multiple sclerosis?... Full Story

Communication between partners leads to higher HIV testing in teens
Date: 2013-12-02 16:57:04

While most teens would shy away from taking STD tests, a new study conducted last month in the Bronx shows that strong communication between partners leads to higher testing in adolescents. In addition, teens in a committed relationship were more likely to get tested for HIV than those with increased education in HIV or those engaging in risky sexual behavior.

Surveying almost 1,000 Bronx teens, the findings released by researchers at the Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University show that 48 percent of the participants who had been tested for HIV (44 percent) engaged in open conversations with their partner regarding HIV. Committed relationships also attribute to a higher frequency in testing, as the study shows more than half of those tested were engaging in sexual activity with just one partner.

Higher HIV knowledge does not lead to more testing... Full Story

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