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Study reveals evidence of pressure inside herpes virus
Date: 2013-07-25 11:13:20

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 776,000 individuals in the U.S. are diagnosed with herpes every year. STD tests will show that roughly one out of six people between the ages of 14 and 49 have the herpes simplex virus. Recently, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University released evidence of internal pressure within the herpes virus.

The university report noted that it has long been theorized that there is pressure inside of the herpes virus as the result of packed genetic materials. The Carnegie Mellon team has proven that theory by measuring the amount of pressure within the herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1). In the past, measuring the internal pressure of viruses was only done with bacteriophages, or viruses that infect bacteria.

"Despite billions of years of evolution separating eukaryotic viruses and bacteriophages, the existence of an internal pressure capable of powering the ejection of DNA into a host cell has been conserved," said biophysicist Alex Evilevitch, Ph.D., lead author of the study. "This suggests that it is a key mechanism for viral infection across organisms and presents us with a new drug target for antiviral therapies."

The scientists noted that the internal pressure may help the virus to infect a host cell, and being able to measure that factor may help to develop a more effective herpes treatment. These findings are applicable to all forms of herpes, including the virus that causes chickenpox and the one that causes mononucleosis - commonly known as the kissing disease.

How to prevent herpes... Full Story

Herpes dating website spreads love, not disease
Date: 2013-07-23 17:19:23

Recently, Successful Match and Positive Singles launched Hmeet.com, a dating site for people living with the herpes simplex virus. The free service allows users to talk with and meet individuals who understand and share their condition. Hmeet.com provides herpes patients with the opportunity to date without having to bring up STD testing or their personal disease.

This is not the first dating website of its kind. According to USA Today, there are several online services to match up couples with the same, or similar, STDs. Positive Singles is one, which claims to have orchestrated 60,000 matches.

"A lot of my clients are looking for relationships and they are on dating websites like eHarmony and Match, but then the question is, 'When do I tell him or her that I have herpes? If I tell them right away, that person is going to go away. But if I let the relationship develop and wait to tell the person, is that betrayal?'" Carl Hindy, a clinical psychologist, told the news source.

Impact of STDs in America... Full Story

Study: Sex addiction is merely high libido
Date: 2013-07-19 16:20:07

The University of California, Los Angeles, recently released a study on sexual addiction - a controversial condition that supposedly leaves people unable to control themselves in sexual contexts. By looking at hypersexual subjects' brain responses, researchers found that sex addiction is on par with a high libido.

The study defined sexual addiction as a condition that causes individuals to follow through on out-of-control sexual urges, despite any risk factor. Those afflicted with hypersexuality often jeopardize their marriages, jobs and relationships. Researchers noted that sex addiction often renders people unable to combat their behaviors.

Researchers examined the brains of subjects who reported a sexual addiction, taking note of how they reacted when shown sexual images. This is the first report of its kind that took into account how brain activity changes as self-identified sex addicts are shown sexual images. The study revealed that the participants' brain responses when exposed to such images did not correlate with the level of their hypersexuality, but was linked only to the severity of their sexual wants.

Nicole Prause​, senior author of the study, said that the findings imply that hypersexuality does not necessarily explain brain differences in sexual response any more than just having a high sex drive.

"Potentially, this is an important finding," noted Prause. "It is the first time scientists have studied the brain responses specifically of people who identify as having hypersexual problems."

The author went on to state that the report suggested that hypersexuality is not an addiction, but rather that non-pathological, high sexual desire causes the problems associated with so-called sex addiction.

Brain responses of self-identified sex addicts... Full Story

Immunocompromised patients at risk for uncontrollable herpes
Date: 2013-07-12 13:10:21

A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveals troubling data regarding the herpes simplex virus. The researchers noted that the virus is becoming increasingly resistant to one of the most commonly prescribed antiviral treatments, Acyclocvir, and while patients with a healthy immune system can control HSV, those who don't may have more difficulty. Stable immune systems tend to keep HSV to a minimum, with sores that are small and only appear briefly. These patients do not usually experience pain with outbreaks.

"In contrast, immunocompromised patients might not be able to control HSV infection," noted the report.

It went on to say that longer and more painful outbreaks are common in those with weakened immune systems, especially now that the virus has become resistant to traditional treatments. According to the study, this is likely due to the over prescription of anti-herpes medications, which has led to the mutation of herpes, giving it the ability to survive typical antiviral medications.

How to determine an HSV infection... Full Story

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