What's The Buzz


Fish may help cut colon cancer risk

Long-chain Omega-3 fatty acids, primarily found in fish and seafood, can help reduce risk of colon cancer, says a new study. “Experimental data have shown benefits of long-chain Omega-3 fatty acids in colorectal carcinogenesis, ranging from reduced tumour growth, suppression of angiogenesis and inhibition of metastasis,” said Sangmi Kim, Research Triangle Park, New Carolina.

“Our finding of inverse association between dietary intakes of long-chain Omega-3 fatty acids and distal large bowel cancer in white participants adds additional support to the hypothesis,” the expert added.

Kim and colleagues studied the link between polyunsaturated fatty acid intake and distal large bowel cancer using data from a population-based control study.

Exercises prevent ageing of cardiovascular system

A new study has shown that long-term exercising could prevent aging of the cardiovascular system. The researchers found that intensive exercise prevented shortening of telomeres, a protective effect against aging of the cardiovascular system.

The telomere shortening mechanism limits cells to a fixed number of divisions and can be regarded as a ‘biological clock’. Gradual shortening of telomeres through cell divisions leads to aging on the cellular level and may limit lifetimes. When the telomeres become critically short the cell undergoes death.

The blood cells of individuals with long-term exercise training exhibit molecular indicators of reduced aging.

Changing patterns of global childhood blindness

A team of eye specialists from India, Malawi, and Tanzania have revealed that patterns of childhood blindness have been changing and there is a need to reassess the strategies for recognition and treatment of the disease in developing countries.

According to Paul Courtright and colleagues, there have been major reductions in nutritional and infectious causes of childhood blindness in developing countries, largely as a result of vitamin A supplementation and measles vaccination programmes.

“With reductions in nutritional and infectious causes of blindness intra-uterine and genetic causes of blindness have assumed increased importance and need tertiary care-level interventions and long-term follow-up to achieve good visual rehabilitation,” they said.

Blood lead levels linked to depression, panic disorder

A new study has shown that young adults with higher blood lead levels are more likely to have depression and panic disorders, even if they have exposure to lead levels generally considered safe.

Maryse F Bouchard, Universite de Montreal, Canada, and colleagues analysed data from 1,987 adults age 20 to 39 years who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey between 1999 and 2004.

Low-level lead exposure may disrupt brain processes, such as those involving the neurotransmitters catecholamine and serotonin, that are associated with depression and panic disorders, the authors noted.

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