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Gut bacteria beneficial for fruit fly

Scientists have shown that specific gut bacteria are beneficial for maintaining a healthy intestine in the fruit fly Drosophila and mice, it also contributes to the overall health of these organisms.

The researchers demonstrated that bacteria in the gut, particularly members of the genus Lactobacillus, promote the growth of host epithelial cells and that this is essential for maintaining homeostasis in the intestinal system.

Andrew S. Neish, Professor at the Emory University School of Medicine, who led the research, said that it is well-known that mammals live in a homeostatic symbiosis with their gut microbiota and that they influence a wide range of physiological processes.

He said that the molecular mechanisms of the symbiotic cross-talk in the gut are largely unrecognized.

Neish asserted that in their study, they discovered that Lactobacilli can stimulate reactive oxygen species that have regulatory effects on intestinal stem cells, including the activation of proliferation of these cells.

Using two different animal models, the researchers showed that the highly conserved underlying mechanism of this symbiotic relationship is the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), by a class of conserved enzymes called NADPH oxidases or Nox’es.

When animal guts were colonized by Lactobacillus, ROS production caused cell growth in intestinal stem cells. In contrast, in germ-free animals ROS production was absent and resulted in suppressed growth of epithelial cells.

Lots of oxygen may not lead to evolution of advanced life

A Danish/Swedish/French research team has shown that the oxygen content on earth, 2.1 billion years ago, was probably same as it was during he so-called Cambrian explosion, 500 million years ago.

Oxygen and advanced life are inextricably linked. Some simple organisms like bacteria can survive without oxygen, but all higher organisms need oxygen and the Earth’s biology would probably be a poor sight, if the atmosphere did not contain the 21 percent oxygen, which is essential for the human brain to function.

The team showed that there was actually plenty of oxygen long before the Cambrian explosion.

The team consists of professor Donald Canfield and postdoc Emma Hammarlund from the Nordic Center for Earth Evolution (NordCEE) at University of Southern Denmark, colleagues from the National Museum in Sweden and colleagues from the following French institutions: Universite de Poitiers, the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Institut Francais de la Recherche pour l’ Exploitation de la Mer, Centre de Brest and the Universite de Rennes in France.

Hammarlund said that they examined rocks that are 2.15 billion - 2.08 billion years old that showed them that there was oxygen in deep water and thus also in the atmosphere at that time.

Prompt treatment can help back pain sufferers

A new study has suggested that early preventative measures can help reduce back pain.
Experts have claimed that prompt help can spare the sufferers from their agony, the Daily Express reported.

According to the research by the Work Foundation think-tank, doctors are not taking back pain and similar conditions seriously enough because they are not life threatening, and making sure patients are fit to work is not regarded as important as other “clinical” priorities.

The report predicted that by 2030 many EU member states will see 50 percent of the population diagnosed with a musculoskeletal disorder such as back pain.

However, it said that early interventions can help reduced these rates across Europe. 

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