Neural Substrates of Anhedonia In Frontotemporal Dementia Identified

People with early-onset dementia are often misdiagnosed as having depression. Research has now identified what may actually be happening in such cases: a profound loss of ability to experience pleasure. The loss is related to degeneration of ‘hedonic hotspots’ in the brain where pleasure mechanisms are concentrated, University of Sydney-led research1 shows. The study revealed…

Tuberculosis Bacteria Releases Its Toxin Via Unique Protein Transport System

Two small proteins made by the M. tuberculosis bacteria mediate secretion of it’s toxin by pore formation in the membranes that envelop the bacteria, new research1 shows. Six years ago, Michael Niederweis, Ph.D., described the first toxin ever found for the deadly pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The toxin, tuberculosis necrotizing toxin, or TNT, became the founding…

Prenatal Phthalate Exposure Linked To Altered Information Processing In Infants

Exposure to phthalates, a class of chemicals widely used in packaging and consumer products, is known to interfere with normal hormone function and development in human and animal studies. Now researchers have found evidence1 linking pregnant women’s exposure to phthalates to altered cognitive outcomes in their infants. Most of the findings involved slower information processing…

Gene Changes Linked To Severe Repetitive Behaviors

Extreme repetitive behaviors such as hand-flapping, body-rocking, skin-picking, and sniffing are common to a number of brain disorders including autism, schizophrenia, Huntington’s disease, and drug addiction. These behaviors, termed stereotypies, are also apparent in animal models of drug addiction and autism. In a new study1, researchers at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research have identified…

SARS-CoV-2 Antibody Longevity Varies Greatly Among Individuals

Antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 wane at different rates, lasting for days in some people, while remaining in others for decades, according to machine learning prediction research. A new study1 shows that the severity of the infection could be a deciding factor in having longer-lasting antibodies. People with low levels of neutralizing antibodies may still be protected…

Effects of Quicker Biological Aging Show Up By Middle Age

For people whose bodies age more quickly than others, the cumulative effects show up as early as midlife, when signs of dementia and physical frailty begin to emerge, a study led by Duke researchers found. The results of the study1 suggests that identifying and treating the diseases of old age should begin by the time…

Dementia Mortality Risk Elevated In Socioeconomically Deprived

A significant share of dementia deaths in England and Wales may be because of socioeconomic deprivation, new research led by Queen Mary University of London suggests. The study1 also found that socioeconomic deprivation was linked with younger age at death with dementia, and poorer access to accurate diagnosis. The research looked at mortality data from…

Zinc Finger Gene Therapy Could Help Treat Alzheimer’s

A genetic engineering strategy has been utilized to reduce levels of tau protein in an animal model of Alzheimer’s disease, say investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Sangamo Therapeutics Inc. The results could lead to a potentially promising treatment for patients with this devastating illness. The strategy, as described in the study1, involves a…