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Parents’ activity won’t influence teen fitness

A new study has found that while teens with normal weight parents tended to be more fit, having physically active parents didn’t affect teens’ level of fitness.

Cardiorespiratory fitness influences health in youth and adulthood, said lead study author Eliane Peterhans, a sports sciences researcher at the University of Konstanz in Germany.
“It is very important to understand how adolescents behave because then you have a chance to correct unhealthy behaviors,” she added.

The study was part of a large German study and included 1,328 teens. Researchers used bicycles to assess participants’ cardiorespiratory fitness and gathered information about their and their families’ health behaviors.

Peterhans and her colleagues found that having two parents with normal weight positively predicted cardiorespiratory fitness in both boys and girls.

Cyberbullying puts teens at risk of depression

Teenage victims of cyberbullying are more likely to develop symptoms of depression, substance abuse and internet addiction, a new study has revealed. Conversely, teens who are depressed or who abuse drugs are also often targets of cyberbullies.
Understanding the link between cyberbullying and health behaviors in adolescence is critical, said the study’s lead author, Manuel Gamez-Guadix, Ph.D. of the University of Deusto in Spain.

“A number of adolescents are both victims of cyberbullying and perpetrators of cyberbullying, but victims are at higher risk for psychological and behavior health problems, like substance abuse, after six months of bullying,” he stated.

Gamez-Guadix and his colleagues surveyed eight hundred and forty-five students (498 girls and 337 boys) between the ages of 13 and 17 years-old. They found that twenty-four percent had been a victim of one cyberbullying behavior, such as someone sending a threatening or insulting message, 15.9 said they experienced two bullying behaviors and 8 percent were victimised by three cyberbulling behaviors.

Psychiatric disorders linked to protein involved in memory

A new study has linked psychiatric disorders have a protein involved in the formation of long-term memories. The study conducted by a team of scientists led by Alexei Morozov at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, has discovered a pathway by which the brain controls a molecule critical to forming long-term memories and connected with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

The mechanism – a protein called Rap1 – controls L-type calcium channels, which participate in the formation of long-term memories.
In the experiment, Morozov and colleagues knocked out the gene responsible for coding the enzyme Rap1, which he suspected played a role in activating L-type calcium channels.
The researchers then used live imaging techniques to monitor the release of neurotransmitters and electron microscopy to visualize L-type channels at synapses.
They discovered that, without Rap1, the L-type calcium channels were more active and more abundant at synapses all the time, increasing the release of neurotransmitters.

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