Tag Archives: Endocrinology

New insights into how the mind influences the body

Neuroscientists at the University of Pittsburgh have identified the neural networks that connect the cerebral cortex to the adrenal medulla, which is responsible for the body’s rapid response in stressful situations. These findings, reported in the online Early Edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), provide evidence for the neural […]

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Stress bites! Researchers study mosquito/bird interactions

Research shows stressed-out birds more attractive to mosquitoes, raising fears birds exposed to stressors such as road noise, pesticides and light pollution, will be bitten more often and spread more West Nile virus When researchers from the University of South Florida (USF) and colleagues investigated how the stress hormone, corticosterone, affects how birds cope with […]

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More evidence that ‘healthy obesity’ may be a myth

The term “healthy obesity” has gained traction over the past 15 years, but scientists have recently questioned its very existence. A study published August 18 in Cell Reports provides further evidence against the notion of a healthy obese state, revealing that white fat tissue samples from obese individuals classified as either metabolically healthy or unhealthy […]

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* Common colon cancer tumor type blocked in mice

A new scientific study has identified why colorectal cancer cells depend on a specific nutrient, and a way to starve them of it. Over one million men and women are living with colorectal cancer in the United States. The National Cancer Institute estimates 4.5% of all men and women will be diagnosed with the cancer […]

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* Happy cows make more nutritious milk

Daily infusions with a chemical commonly associated with feelings of happiness were shown to increase calcium levels in the blood of Holstein cows and the milk of Jersey cows that had just given birth. The results, published in the Journal of Endocrinology, could lead to a better understanding of how to improve the health of […]

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Pituitary tissue grown from human stem cells releases hormones in rats

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Researchers have successfully used human stem cells to generate functional pituitary tissue that secretes hormones important for the body’s stress response as well as for its growth and reproductive functions. When transplanted into rats with hypopituitarism–a disease linked to dwarfism and premature aging in humans–the lab-grown pituitary cells promoted normal hormone release. The study, which […]

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Shifting bird distribution indicates a changing Arctic

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Shifts in the distribution of Spectacled Eiders, a predatory bird at the top of the Bering Sea’s benthic food web, indicate possible changes in the Arctic’s marine ecosystem, according to new research in The Condor: Ornithological Applications. Matt Sexson of the USGS Alaska Science Center and his colleagues compared recent satellite telemetry data from molting […]

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* First rodent found with a human-like menstrual cycle

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Mice are a mainstay of biomedical research laboratories. But the rodents are poor models for studying women’s reproductive health, because they don’t menstruate. Now researchers at Monash University in Clayton, Australia, say that they have found a rodent that defies this conventional wisdom: the spiny mouse (Acomys cahirinus). If the finding holds up, the animal […]

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New guidelines explain how to monitor and treat hyperthyroid cats

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Over the last 30+ years, veterinary professionals’ understanding of clinical feline hyperthyroidism (FHT) has evolved tremendously. Initially FHT cats were referred to a specialist and now primary practitioners routinely manage these cases. The disease reportedly affects from 1.5-11.4% of cats around the world and is the most common endocrine disease of cats over 10 years […]

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* Hormones that are released during hunger affect decision making

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Never make a decision when you are hungry. The hormone ghrelin — that is released before meals and known to increase appetite — has a negative effect on both decision making and impulse control. Such were the results of a recently conducted study at Sahlgrenska University. When hungry, the hormone ghrelin is produced in the […]

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* Stem cells from diabetic patients coaxed to become insulin-secreting cells

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If damaged cells are replaceable, type 1 diabetics wouldn’t need insulin shots. Signaling a potential new approach to treating diabetes, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and Harvard University have produced insulin-secreting cells from stem cells derived from patients with type 1 diabetes. People with this form of diabetes can’t make […]

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Islet transplantation restores blood sugar awareness and control in type 1 diabetes

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New clinical trial results show that transplantation of pancreatic islets–cell clusters that contain insulin-producing cells–prevents severe, potentially life-threatening drops in blood sugar in people with type 1 diabetes. Researchers found that the treatment was effective for people who experienced episodes of severe hypoglycemia–low blood sugar levels that can lead to seizures, loss of consciousness and […]

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* Scientists still fail to record age and sex of lab mice

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The largest-ever analysis of the quality of mouse studies reveals that as recently as 2014, only around 50% of research papers recorded both the sex and age of the animals used — key details needed for others to assess and reproduce the research. The analysis, which used software to trawl through the text of more […]

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Link made between genetics, aging

Scientists at the University of Georgia have shown that a hormone instrumental in the aging process is under genetic control, introducing a new pathway by which genetics regulates aging and disease. Previous studies have found that blood levels of this hormone, growth differentiation factor 11, decrease over time. Restoration of GDF11 reverses cardiovascular aging in […]

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The power of touch: Sex-changing snails switch sooner when together

Many animals change sex at some point in their lives, often after reaching a certain size. Snails called slipper limpets begin life as males, and become female as they grow. A new Smithsonian study shows that when two males are kept together and can touch one another, the larger one changes to female sooner, and […]

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Gene controls stress hormone production in macaques

Some people react more calmly in stressful situations than others. Certain genes, such as the so-called COMT gene, are thought to play a role in determining our stress response. Researchers from the Vetmeduni Vienna and the University of Vienna have now studied this gene in macaques, a genus of Old World monkeys, and for the […]

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Articles examine relationship between skin, endocrine disorders

Two studies and an editorial published online by JAMA Dermatology examine the relationship between skin disorders and endocrine diseases. In the first study, Dipankar De, M.D., of the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India, and coauthors looked at the association between insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome in male patients with acne (ages […]

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Insulin-producing pancreatic cells created from human skin cells

Scientists at the Gladstone Institutes and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) have successfully converted human skin cells into fully-functional pancreatic cells. The new cells produced insulin in response to changes in glucose levels, and, when transplanted into mice, the cells protected the animals from developing diabetes in a mouse model of the disease. […]

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Tie between estrogen, memory explored by researchers

A new study by University of Guelph researchers that narrows down where and how estrogens affect the brain may help in understanding how the hormones affect cognition and memory in women, says psychology professor Elena Choleris. The team found that adding the hormone to female mouse brains helps boost short-term learning, likely through a ‘use-it-or-lose-it’ […]

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Salmon is first transgenic animal to win US approval for food

Long-awaited decision authorizes a genetically engineered animal to grace US dinner tables for the first time. A fast-growing salmon has become the first genetically engineered animal to be approved for human consumption in the United States. The decision, issued by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on 19 November, releases the salmon from two […]

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Births down and deaths up in Gulf dolphins

A NOAA-led team of scientists is reporting a high rate of reproductive failure in dolphins exposed to oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill. The team has monitored these bottlenose dolphins in heavily-oiled Barataria Bay for five years following the spill. Their findings, published in Proceedings of the Royal Society today, suggest that the effects of […]

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Estrogen, shrubbery, and the sex ratio of suburban frogs

A new Yale study shows that estrogen in suburban yards is changing the ratio of male and female green frogs at nearby ponds. Higher levels of estrogen in areas where there are shrubs, vegetable gardens, and manicured lawns are disrupting frogs’ endocrine systems, according to the study. That, in turn, is driving up the number […]

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Targeting glucose production in liver may lead to new diabetes therapies

Disabling a critical checkpoint for controlling glucose production in the liver reduces blood sugar levels in mouse models of type 2 diabetes. High blood sugar is a defining characteristic of Type 2 diabetes and the cause of many of the condition’s complications, including kidney failure, heart disease, and blindness. Most diabetes medications aim to maintain […]

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* Underlying cause of diabetes in dogs

In a new effort, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Baylor College of Medicine have used advanced imaging technology to fill in details about the underlying cause of canine diabetes, which until now has been little understood. For the first time, they’ve precisely quantified the dramatic loss of insulin-producing beta cells in dogs with […]

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Climate change could leave Pacific Northwest amphibians high and dry

Far above the wildfires raging in Washington’s forests, a less noticeable consequence of this dry year is taking place in mountain ponds. The minimal snowpack and long summer drought that have left the Pacific Northwest lowlands parched also affect the region’s amphibians due to loss of mountain pond habitat. According to a new paper published […]

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Lipid enzyme heightens insulin sensitivity, potential therapy to treat Type 2 diabetes

Reducing high concentrations of a fatty molecule that is commonly found in people with diabetes and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease rapidly improves insulin sensitivity, UT Southwestern Medical Center diabetes researchers have found. Insulin is a crucial hormone that helps the body convert sugar into energy, absorb nutrients, and reduce the storage of sugars as fat. […]

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Neuroscience: The hard science of oxytocin

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As researchers work out how oxytocin affects the brain, the hormone is shedding its reputation as a simple cuddle chemical. In April 2011, Robert Froemke and his team were reprogramming the brains of virgin mice with a single hormone injection. Before the treatment, the female mice were largely indifferent to the cries of a distressed […]

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* For black rhino, zoo diet might be too much of a good thing

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A new study shows that captive black rhinos — but not their wild counterparts — are at high risk for two common health problems suffered by millions of humans: inflammation and insulin resistance. The finding suggests captive black rhinos have metabolic problems. In humans, these same conditions can both result from a rich diet and […]

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* Gold standard management of the diabetic cat

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An expert panel of veterinary clinicians and academics has been convened to produce practical guidance to help veterinary teams deliver optimal management for the increasing numbers of diabetic cats that are presenting to practices. The International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM), the veterinary division of International Cat Care, has convened an expert panel of veterinary […]

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* Environmental exposure to hormones used in animal agriculture greater than expected

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Research by an Indiana University environmental scientist and colleagues at universities in Iowa and Washington finds that potentially harmful growth-promoting hormones used in beef production are expected to persist in the environment at higher concentrations and for longer durations than previously thought. “What we release into the environment is just the starting point for a […]

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