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Eat chocolate daily to lower BP

Next time, when you reach for that bar of Hershey's, know that it only takes a bite or two of chocolate to get the benefits.

A new study has suggested that a daily bite of chocolate could bolster your workouts, reports the New York Daily News.

Scientists gave a group of mice a twice-daily dose of purified form of epicatechin, cacao's chief beneficial compound.  These mice outperformed the group of mice who had not been given the chocolate-y supplement, according to researchers at the University of California, San Diego.

The cacao chemical also increased the physiological response in the test group's leg muscles.

Dark chocolate in tiny amounts has also been shown to lower blood pressure.

Why we often remember a person’s face, not name

Neuroscientists at the University of Bristol have identified the reasons behind why we are, at times, unable to link a face to a name.

The research, led by Dr Clea Warburton and Dr Gareth Barker in the University’s School of Physiology and Pharmacology, has investigated why we can recognise faces much better if we have extra clues as to where or indeed when we encountered them in the first place.

The study found that when we need to remember that particular object, for example a face, multiple brain regions have to work together - not independently.

The researchers investigated the neural basis of our ability to recognise different types of stimuli under different conditions. Of specific interest were two types of recognition memory: 'object-in-place recognition memory' (remembering where we put our keys), and 'temporal order recognition memory' (when we last had them).

Neither 'object-in-place' or 'temporal order recognition' memories could be formed if communication between the hippocampus and either the perirhinal cortex, or the medial prefrontal cortex, was broken. In other words, disconnecting the regions prevented the ability to remember both where objects had been, and in which order.

Patients’ skin cells to treat them for numerous diseases

A patient’s own skin cells could one day be used to treat him/her for diseases as diverse as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and cancer, a US scientist has said. Such therapies would avoid the controversial need for using stem cells derived from human embryos, and in theory, also bypass immunological problems inherent in using cells from one person to treat another.

However, in recent years, unique problems inherent in the use of stem cells derived from adult cells — so-called induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) — have surfaced and even their immunological safety has been called into question.

But now, Paul S. Knoepfler, UC Davis associate professor of cell biology and human anatomy said “iPSCs offer the potential to treat many diseases as an alternative or adjuvant therapy to drugs or surgery,” said Knoepfler.

In theory, a person's skin cells could be induced to make neurons that produce the neurotransmitter dopamine, for example, and be delivered to brain regions where it is lacking in patients with Parkinson’s disease.

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