Monday, 25 September 2023

Parkinson’s Onset Theory Challenged: Synaptic Dysfunction Before Neuron Death

Parkinson’s disease affects 1% to 2% of the population and is characterized by resting tremor, rigidity and bradykinesia (slowness of movement). These motor symptoms are due to the progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain.

The findings, which will be published Sept. 15 in Neuron, open a new avenue for therapies, the scientists said.

“We showed that dopaminergic synapses become dysfunctional before neuronal death occurs,” said lead author Dr. Dimitri Krainc, chair of neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and director of the Simpson Querrey Center for Neurogenetics.

“Based on these findings, we hypothesize that targeting dysfunctional synapses before the neurons are degenerated may represent a better therapeutic strategy.”

The study investigated patient-derived midbrain neurons, which is critical because mouse and human dopamine neurons have a different physiology and findings in the mouse neurons are not translatable to humans, as highlighted in Krainc’s research recently published in Science.

Northwestern scientists found that dopaminergic synapses are not functioning correctly in various genetic forms of Parkinson’s disease. This work, together with other recent studies by Krainc’s lab, addresses one of the major gaps in the field: how different genes linked to Parkinson’s lead to degeneration of human dopaminergic neurons.


Neurons from PD patients with mutant parkin displayed defective recycling of synaptic vesicles, leading to accumulation of toxic oxidized dopamine that was attenuated by boosting endophilin A1 expression.

Notably, combined heterozygous parkin and homozygous PTEN-induced kinase 1 (PINK1) mutations led to earlier disease onset compared with homozygous mutant PINK1 alone, further underscoring a PINK1-independent role for parkin in contributing to disease.

Thus, this study identifies a pathway for selective activation of parkin at human dopaminergic synapses and highlights the importance of this mechanism in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease.



Across America, Many Who Need a Neurologist Live Too Far From Care

“Our study found a substantial travel burden exists for some people with neurologic conditions, including people living in areas with fewer neurologists and rural areas,” said study author Dr. Brian Callaghan, head of the American Academy of Neurology’s Health Services Research Subcommittee.

“We also found that people who traveled long distances were less likely to return for a follow‐up visit with a neurologist," Callaghan said in an academy news release.

Data came from more than 563,000 people on Medicare (average age: 70) who saw a neurologist at least once during the one-year study. More than 17% traveled long distances to their neurologist, averaging 81 miles one way and 90 minutes travel time.

Those who had neurologists closer to home traveled an average 13 miles to appointments. Average travel time: 22 minutes.

“Travel distance can be a serious barrier to care for people with chronic neurologic conditions,” said Dr. Carlayne Jackson, president of the American Academy of Neurology.

“The American Academy of Neurology is committed to improving access to high-quality neurologic care because consistent access to specialized care from a neurologist is essential to help people manage their symptoms and minimize risks of dangerous complications and side effects," she said in the release.

About 40% of study participants with brain and spinal cord cancers; 30% with ALS, and 23% with MS traveled long distances to appointments.

Patients in areas with the fewest neurologists -- about 10 for every 100,000 Medicare recipients -- were three times more likely to travel a long distance than people living in areas with the most neurologists, 50 per 100,000 Medicare beneficiaries.

People in rural areas were five times more likely to travel long distances than people in urban areas.

Those who traveled long distances to see their primary care physician had triple the odds of long-distance travel to see a neurologist.

Preferences also factor in.

Nearly one-third of participants bypassed the nearest neurologist by 20 miles or more, the study found. About 7% of people crossed state lines for neurologic care.

“It is possible some people bypass the nearest neurologist as a matter of preference for a particular physician or they may need to travel farther to reach neurologists with shorter wait times,” Callaghan said.

Among 165,000 participants who visited a neurologist for the first time within the study's first three months, 62,000 had at least one follow-up visit with the same neurologist. Those who traveled long distances were 26% less likely to have a follow-up visit compared to those without long-distance travel.

“Our results suggest that policymakers should investigate feasible and affordable ways to improve necessary access to neurologic care, especially in areas with low availability of neurologists and in rural communities,” said study author Chun Chieh (Anna) Lin of Ohio State University. “Interventions such as telemedicine can improve access to care. Future research should examine the differences in health outcomes between people who must travel long distances for care and those who do not.”

The study was conducted prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Future research should look at the impact of telemedicine, the authors said.

Researchers were able to measure travel only for patients who completed neurologist visits, not those who were unable to see the doctor. The results may not be the same for people not covered by Medicare.



Neuro News Roundup: World Alzheimer Day


Alzheimer Agent Blarcamesine Shows Significant Reduction of Amyloid-ß Biomarkers in Phase 2b/3 Trial

Newly announced findings from a follow-up analysis to the phase 2b/3 study (NCT03790709) assessing blarcamesine (Anavex Life Sciences), an investigational therapy, demonstrated a significant reduction in pathological amyloid-ß levels in plasma, as well as a significant slowing in the rate of pathological brain atrophy on MRI scans in treated patients with early AD.1

In the study, blarcamesine-treated patients showed significant increases in validated biomarkers of amyloid-ß pathology, plasma Aβ42/40 ratio (P = .048), further demonstrating the agent’s strong antiamyloid effect. Additionally, MRI findings showed significant reduction in brain volume loss, including whole brain (P = .0005), when blarcamesine was comparedwith placebo.

The trial was a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 2b/3 study that enrolled 508 participants with early symptomatic AD. The participants, recruited from 52 medical research centers and hospitals in 5 countries, were randomized to receive blarcamesine (n = 338) or placebo (n = 170) oral capsules once daily for 48 weeks. The Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale-Cognitive (ADAS-Cog) and Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study-Activities of Daily Living (ADCS-ADL) subscales were used as primary end points to assess the cognitive and functional efficacy of blarcamesine. Using a mixed model for repeated measures, all prespecified clinical end points were analyzed.

Alzheimer Agent ALZ-801 Improves Cognition, Reduces Relevant Biomarker Levels in 2-Year Analysis

Alzheon, the drug makers of ALZ-801, announced positive topline data from its phase 2 biomarker study (NCT04693520), with findings that showed significant reductions in plasma phosphorylated tau (p-tau) levels and improved cognitive scores after 2 years of treatment with the agent. Patients on ALZ-801 also demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in measures of hippocampal volume in comparison with an external control arm of matched ADNI patients, which were consistent with previously reported 12-month data.2

The open-label, single-arm phase 2 trial included 84 patients with early-stage AD who carried either 1 or 2 copies of the ε4 allele of apolipoprotein E gene (APOE3/4 heterozygotes and APOE4/4 homozygotes, respectively) and were treated over a 104-week period. Treatment with the agent resulted in a statistically significant 43% reduction in plasma p-tau181 (P <.009) after 52 weeks and a 31% reduction at week 104 (P <.045). Plasma amyloid-ß42 levels decreased throughout the treatment period, reaching a statistically significant 4% reduction from baseline (P <.042) at week 104, while the reduction in plasma Aß40 levels stabilized at 52 weeks at a new homeostatic level.

After 104 weeks of treatment, patients showed a statistically significant 28% reduction in hippocampal volume (P <.015) in comparison with external controls from the Alzheimer Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI). Controls from the ADNI which were matched based on APOE4 genotype, age, gender, and disease stage following FDA guidance from August 2023 on the use of real-world data and real-world evidence to support regulatory decision-making for drugs and biological products.



Brain Activity Decoder Can Reveal Stories in People’s Minds

Beginning with an earlier version of the paper that appeared as a preprint online, the researchers addressed questions about potential misuse of the technology. The paper describes how decoding worked only with cooperative participants who had participated willingly in training the decoder. Results for individuals on whom the decoder had not been trained were unintelligible, and if participants on whom the decoder had been trained later put up resistance — for example, by thinking other thoughts — results were similarly unusable.

“We take very seriously the concerns that it could be used for bad purposes and have worked to avoid that,” Tang said. “We want to make sure people only use these types of technologies when they want to and that it helps them.”

In addition to having participants listen or think about stories, the researchers asked subjects to watch four short, silent videos while in the scanner. The semantic decoder was able to use their brain activity to accurately describe certain events from the videos.

The system currently is not practical for use outside of the laboratory because of its reliance on the time need on an fMRI machine. But the researchers think this work could transfer to other, more portable brain-imaging systems, such as functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS).

“fNIRS measures where there’s more or less blood flow in the brain at different points in time, which, it turns out, is exactly the same kind of signal that fMRI is measuring,” Huth said. “So, our exact kind of approach should translate to fNIRS,” although, he noted, the resolution with fNIRS would be lower.

This work was supported by the Whitehall Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund.

The study’s other co-authors are Amanda LeBel, a former research assistant in the Huth lab, and Shailee Jain, a computer science graduate student at UT Austin.

Alexander Huth and Jerry Tang have filed a PCT patent application related to this work.


#EEG (Electroencephalography)
#fMRI (Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

Tuesday, 19 September 2023

5 best mattresses for back pain relief and better sleep

How can a mattress help back pain?

A mattress plays a crucial role in back pain management. A good mattress provides adequate support to the spine and reduces pressure on sensitive areas, allowing muscles to relax and heal during sleep. Proper spinal alignment and support ensure a restorative sleep, minimising discomfort.

Which type of mattress is best for back pain management?

According to market leaders, memory foam and orthopedic mattresses are the best choices for back pain management. While memory foam conforms to your body’s shape, reducing pressure points, orthopedic mattresses offer specialised support for the spine and lower back. If you are still confused about how to choose the best mattress for back pain, make the choice as per your sleep preferences while prioritising support and comfort.

Best mattress for back pain relief

We have curated a list of the best mattresses for back pain relief in India. By choosing one of these mattresses, you can take a significant step towards improving your sleep and managing back pain effectively.

1. The Sleep Company SmartGRID Ortho 5 Inch Mattress Single Size

The Sleep Company SmartGRID Ortho mattress is a technology-backed solution for back pain relief. It is powered by the SmartGRID technology, a grid-like structure that dynamically adapts to the contours of your body. This ensures that your spine stays aligned throughout the night, reducing pressure on your lower back and shoulders. The 2000+ air channels allow cooling comfort.

A firm orthopedic mattress, it comes with a removable and washable cover that adds a layer of protection against dust and spillage. This no-sagging product comes with a 10-year warranty against manufacturing defects.

2. Doctor Dreams by Nilkamal Plus Memory Foam 6 Inch Orthopaedic Mattress

The Doctor Dreams by Nilkamal Orthopaedic Mattress combines memory foam and high-density foam layers to deliver optimal comfort and support. This medium firm mattress is supported by ergonomically designed PU foam, comforting memory foam and knitted fabric for a relaxed and refreshing sleep.

Its high-density foam base provides durability and long-lasting support, making it a worthwhile investment for your overall well-being.

3. Livpure Smart Ortho CurvX Memory Foam Mattress

The Livpure Smart Ortho CurvX Mattress is designed with 5D Sleeptech technology that is focused on body and spine support. From head and neck tp lower legs and ankles, your entire body will get the comfort of the unique features of this mattress for back relief. It comes embedded with 16 biohealing crystals and made in breathable fabric for a cooling effect.

The memory foam conforms to your body’s curves, aligning your spine and reducing discomfort.

48% OFF

4. Springfit Club Class Platinum Orthopedic Back Pain Relief Dual Comfort Medium Soft & Hard Bed Mattress 6 Inch

A reversible mattress with high relisience foam, the Springfit Club Class Platinum Orthopedic Mattress offers a unique dual-comfort feature with medium-soft and hard sides. This flexibility allows you to choose the level of support that suits your back pain needs.

While the medium-soft side provides a plush feel, while the hard side offers robust support to your lumbar region. It’s a versatile choice for couples with different comfort preferences.

11% OFF

5. Wakefit Mattress Orthopedic Mattress

Wakefit’s Orthopedic Mattress features next gen memory foam and high-density foam that adapt to the shape and weight of your body. It is hypoallergenic, and keeps you protected by being resistant to bed bugs. Its breathable fabric cover, ensuring a comfortable and pain-free night’s sleep. This mattress is backed by a 10-year warranty, reflecting its durability and long-term benefits. The breathable fabric cover promotes airflow and temperature regulation, ensuring comfortable sleep.


Test Your Knowledge: How Does Universal Screening for Dyslexia in Schools Work?


How many students are estimated to have dyslexia or other language-based disorders? How does universal screening for dyslexia in schools work? Test your knowledge by taking our quiz.

Once you complete the quiz, you can see how your score compares to your peers, get detailed explanations of the correct answers, and find additional reading and resources on the topic.

Follow our Special Education tag to explore more Education Week coverage on special education. 


How Much Do You Know About Universal Dyslexia Screening? Test Your Knowledge

An estimated ________ students have dyslexia or some other language-based disorder.  


An estimated ________ students have dyslexia or some other language-based disorder.  

1 in 30
1 in 20
1 in 10
1 in 5

As of October of 2022, ___ states had enacted dyslexia-related legislation. 


As of October of 2022, ___ states had enacted dyslexia-related legislation. 


True/False: Dyslexia screening that takes place within a school setting is intended to diagnose dyslexia.


True/False: Dyslexia screening that takes place within a school setting is intended to diagnose dyslexia.


Among public schools that aren’t using evidence-based reading instruction, dyslexia screenings are likely to find risk indicators of dyslexia in about __________ of students.


Among public schools that aren’t using evidence-based reading instruction, dyslexia screenings are likely to find risk indicators of dyslexia in about __________ of students.

11 percent
34 percent
50 percent
62 percent

Formal evaluators of dyslexia must be able to:


Formal evaluators of dyslexia must be able to:

Administer assessments
Interpret evaluation data
Provide input on appropriate reading interventions
All of the above

True/False: Once a student has been diagnosed with dyslexia and qualifies for special education services, a school team will create an individualized education program (IEP) for the student.


True/False: Once a student has been diagnosed with dyslexia and qualifies for special education services, a school team will create an individualized education program (IEP) for the student.



Thursday, 14 September 2023

A boy saw 17 doctors over 3 years for chronic pain.


The beginning of the end of the journey came earlier this year, when Courtney finally got some answers from an unlikely source, ChatGPT. The frustrated mom made an account and shared with the artificial intelligence platform everything she knew about her son's symptoms and all the information she could gather from his MRIs.

“We saw so many doctors. We ended up in the ER at one point. I kept pushing,” she says. “I really spent the night on the (computer) … going through all these things."

So, when ChatGPT suggested a diagnosis of tethered cord syndrome, "it made a lot of sense," she recalls.


Pain, grinding teeth, dragging leg

When Alex began chewing on things, his parents wondered if his molars were coming in and causing pain. As it continued, they thought he had a cavity.

“Our sweet personality — for the most part — (child) is dissolving into this tantrum-ing crazy person that didn’t exist the rest of the time,” Courtney recalls.

The dentist “ruled everything out” but thought maybe Alex was grinding his teeth and believed an orthodontist specializing in airway obstruction could help. Airway obstructions impact a child’s sleep and could explain why he seemed so exhausted and moody, the dentist thought. The orthodontist found that Alex’s palate was too small for his mouth and teeth, which made it tougher for him to breathe at night. She placed an expander in Alex’s palate, and it seemed like things were improving.

“Everything was better for a little bit,” Courtney says. “We thought we were in the home stretch.”

But then she noticed Alex had stopped growing taller, so they visited the pediatrician, who thought the pandemic was negatively affecting his development. Courtney didn’t agree, but she still brought her son back in early 2021 for a checkup.

"He'd grown a little bit," she says.

The pediatrician then referred Alex to physical therapy because he seemed to have some imbalances between his left and right sides.

“He would lead with his right foot and just bring his left foot along for the ride,” Courtney says.

But before starting physical therapy, Alex had already been experiencing severe headaches that were only getting worse. He visited a neurologist, who said Alex had migraines. The boy also struggled with exhaustion, so he was taken to an ear, nose and throat doctor to see if he was having sleep problems due to his sinus cavities or airway.

No matter how many doctors the family saw, the specialists would only address their individual areas of expertise, Courtney says.

“Nobody’s willing to solve for the greater problem,” she adds. “Nobody will even give you a clue about what the diagnosis could be.”

Next, a physical therapist thought that Alex could have something called Chiari malformation, a congenital condition that causes abnormalities in the brain where the skull meets the spine, according to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons. Courtney began researching it, and they visited more doctors — a new pediatrician, a pediatric internist, an adult internist and a musculoskeletal doctor — but again reached a dead end.

In total, they visited 17 different doctors over three years. But Alex still had no diagnosis that explained all his symptoms. An exhausted and frustrated Courtney signed up for ChatGPT and began entering his medical information, hoping to find a diagnosis.

“I went line by line of everything that was in his (MRI notes) and plugged it into ChatGPT,” she says. “I put the note in there about ... how he wouldn’t sit crisscross applesauce. To me, that was a huge trigger (that) a structural thing could be wrong.”

She eventually found tethered cord syndrome and joined a Facebook group for families of children with it. Their stories sounded like Alex's. She scheduled an appointment with a new neurosurgeon and told her she suspected Alex had tethered cord syndrome. The doctor looked at his MRI images and knew exactly what was wrong with Alex.

“She said point blank, ‘Here’s occulta spina bifida, and here’s where the spine is tethered,” Courtney says.

Tethered cord syndrome occurs when the tissue in the spinal cord forms attachments that limit movement of the spinal cord, causing it to stretch abnormally, according to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons. The condition is closely associated with spina bifida, a birth defect where part of the spinal cord doesn’t develop fully and some of the spinal cord and nerves are exposed.

With tethered cord syndrome, “the spinal cord is stuck to something. It could be a tumor in the spinal canal. It could be a bump on a spike of bones. It could just be too much fat at the end of the spinal cord,” Dr. Holly Gilmer, a pediatric neurosurgeon at the Michigan Head & Spine Institute, who treated Alex, tells "The abnormality can’t elongate ... and it pulls.” 

In many children with spina bifida, there’s a visible opening in the child’s back. But the type Alex had is closed and considered “hidden,” also known as spina bifida occulta, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.




 #ChronicPain #PainManagement #ChronicIllness #InvisibleIllness #ChronicPainWarrior #PainRelief #ChronicPainLife #PainAwareness #LivingWithPain #ChronicPainSupport #ChronicPainAwareness #PainSucks #PainWarrior #ChronicPainJourney #PainFree #PainCommunity #PainCoping


People with dyslexia can bring unique strengths and advantages to the workplace


Dyslexia is the most common learning disability in the world, and up to 15 to 20 per cent of the population has a language-based learning disability. If you don’t have dyslexia yourself, you likely know someone who does.

Dyslexia is characterized by difficulties with reading, writing and spelling. Like other learning disabilities, people with dyslexia process information and learn differently.

Though learning disabilities are often characterized as a childhood issue, they are lifelong conditions that follow people into the workplace. People with dyslexia find it harder to find jobs and they often experience challenges once they are hired because of their learning disability.

Dyslexia can result in challenges with organization, time management, reading and writing, effective communication and comprehending complicated instructions. These challenges can be compounded if companies don’t have accommodations in place for people with disabilities.

But people with dyslexia often bring unique strengths to the workplace as well. Employers miss out on untapped potential when they overlook or discount their abilities in the workplace.


Advantages of dyslexic workers

Because people with dyslexia process information and think differently than others, they can bring distinctive advantages to the workplace.

People with dyslexia tend to be visual thinkers and can often see the big picture. This can help them visualize complicated scenarios and come up with new, original solutions to problems.

People with dyslexia also have above-average problem-solving skills, and are skilled at thinking creatively and coming up with abstract and unique ideas — all of which results in a more innovative work environment.

In addition, people with dyslexia are often resilient and persevering because of their experience overcoming challenges and barriers. This can lead to a strong work ethic, determination and motivation towards accomplishing their goals.


Website :


#Dyslexia #DyslexiaAwareness #DyslexiaSupport #DyslexiaAdvocate #DyslexiaCommunity #DyslexiaEducation #DyslexiaParenting #DyslexiaStrengths #DyslexiaAcceptance #DyslexiaWarrior #DyslexiaPride #DyslexiaAwarenessMonth (used in October for Dyslexia Awareness Month) #DyslexiaResources #DyslexiaJourney #SayDyslexia #DyslexiaInclusion #ReadingDifficulties #LearningDifferences #Neurodiversity #SpecialEducation #DyslexicSuccess #EmpowerDyslexia #DyslexiaParent





Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a diverse group of conditions. They are characterized by some degree of difficulty with social interaction and communication. Other characteristics are atypical patterns of activities and behaviours, such as difficulty with transition from one activity to another, a focus on details and unusual reactions to sensations.

The abilities and needs of autistic people vary and can evolve over time. While some people with autism can live independently, others have severe disabilities and require life-long care and support. Autism often has an impact on education and employment opportunities. In addition, the demands on families providing care and support can be significant. Societal attitudes and the level of support provided by local and national authorities are important factors determining the quality of life of people with autism.

Characteristics of autism may be detected in early childhood, but autism is often not diagnosed until much later.

People with autism often have co-occurring conditions, including epilepsy, depression, anxiety and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder as well as challenging behaviours such as difficulty sleeping and self-injury. The level of intellectual functioning among autistic people varies widely, extending from profound impairment to superior levels.


It is estimated that worldwide about 1 in 100 children has autism (1). This estimate represents an average figure, and reported prevalence varies substantially across studies. Some well-controlled studies have, however, reported figures that are substantially higher. The prevalence of autism in many low- and middle-income countries is unknown.


Available scientific evidence suggests that there are probably many factors that make a child more likely to have autism, including environmental and genetic factors.

Available epidemiological data conclude that there is no evidence of a causal association between measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, and autism. Previous studies suggesting a causal link were found to be filled with methodological flaws (2,3).

There is also no evidence to suggest that any other childhood vaccine may increase the risk of autism. Evidence reviews of the potential association between the preservative thiomersal and aluminium adjuvants contained in inactivated vaccines and the risk of autism strongly concluded that vaccines do not increase the risk of autism.



#ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder)


Thursday, 7 September 2023

DeFi Protocol Synapse Responds to Selling Pressure With 17% Bounce


Synapse's SYN token recovered its losses after 9 million were sold by a liquidity provider identified as Nima Capital by the protocol.

The native token of Synapse, a decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol designed to transfer data to cross-chain bridges, rebounded more than 17% from a low of $0.30 after a liquidity provider sold its SYN tokens on Monday.

The recovery came after the price slumped 25% Monday when a wallet the protocol said was tied to venture capital firm Nima Capital sold 9 million of the tokens.

"A Synapse liquidity provider sold their SYN tokens and removed liquidity today. We're investigating unusual activity on their wallets and are working to get in touch with them. Will update once there is more info. There was no security breach of the protocol or bridge," the Synapse team wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter, at the time.

Synapse was one of the best performing crypto assets earlier this year, rallying by 44% in a single day in February as optimism around cross-chain bridges continued to rise.

Volume of SYN trading ballooned in the days following the sell-off, with over $25 million being recorded in the past 24-hours. Last week's highest total was $5.9 million, according to CoinMarketCap.

With interest in the token remaining relatively high, the price spiked to $0.425 following a flurry of activity on Binance during Asia hours on Wednesday. It has since lost a portion of those gains as it trades at $0.358.


9 Exercise Tips for People With Migraine

1. Choose an Activity You Like

Whether you choose brisk walking, jogging, swimming, or cycling, you’re more likely to stick to your routine if you enjoy the activity. Start with low-impact exercises that won’t jostle your body too much, says Gaz.

2. Build Your Stamina Gradually 

“In terms of aerobic exercise, we would generally tell our patients to start with walking — it’s easy, it’s safe, it’s cheap, and it’s practical — and to do that regularly,” says Bond.

As you get more comfortable with your exercise routine, you can gradually work up to higher-intensity exercise. Exercises like jumping jacks, hopping in place, running stairs, and doing box jumps can strengthen your muscles, bones, joints, and ligaments, Gaz says.

If you’re just starting out, limit your high-impact exercise to one day a week, he says. “As you become more comfortable and used to these types of movements and activities, feel free to add another day of high-impact exercise to your program.”

Your goal should be to move more and sit less. Aim to do 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise and two or more days of strength training a week, the amount recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The latest guidelines state that every little bit helps — a quick walk up and down the office hallway, a jog around the block, or a climb up the stairs can count toward your weekly goal.

RELATED: Everything You Need to Know About Fitness

3. Snack Smart to Keep Blood Sugar in a Healthy Range

Because your blood sugar decreases during exercise, it’s important to have a source of energy while you work out, Gaz says.

The American Migraine Foundation (AMF) recommends eating about 90 minutes before you exercise and suggests eating foods with protein, such as protein bars and nuts, prior to exercise.

If you get cramps, you may have eaten too close to your workout, Gaz notes. And, adds Kriegler, going too long without eating can also provoke migraine.

RELATED: What to Eat Before and After Your Workout

4. Stay Hydrated Before, During, and After a Workout

People who get migraine attacks regularly can experience an episode if they’re dehydrated — especially while they’re exercising, Gaz says. “It takes roughly 64 to 80 ounces of fluid to replace the water we lose in our bodies over the course of 24 hours,” he says, noting that even more fluid is needed if you regularly exercise and live in a warmer climate.

In one study, researchers found that people with migraine who drank more water had less-intense headaches.

RELATED: 8 Smart Tips for Preventing Dehydration

5. Warm Up and Cool Down

Jumping right into your routine without warming up first could trigger migraine, Gaz says. Instead, try taking a five-minute walk before you start running, jogging, or cycling. If you’re doing resistance training, try warming up with some light weights first, Gaz says.

After your workout, take a five-minute walk or do gentle stretches to help lower your heart rate and blood pressure. “This also can help eliminate some of the post-exercise muscle soreness that comes with resistance training,” he says.

6. Keep Cool During Exercise 

“If you’re overheated, it can trigger a migraine,” Kriegler says. Heat, humidity, bright artificial lights in the exercise studio, and bright sunlight can all make migraine more likely, according to the AMF.

“Particularly on hot days, try exercising in the early morning to avoid that heat and humidity,” suggests Bond.

7. Use Correct Posture When Exercising

Using the wrong form while you exercise can place extra stress on your head, neck, and shoulders, which can trigger migraine, Kriegler says. An exercise specialist can help correct your form, Gaz says. You can also get tips from online exercise videos.

RELATED: The Link Between Migraine Headache and Neck Pain

8. Try Exercise or Physical Activity That Isn’t Aerobic

Although there are benefits to more vigorous exercise, exploring nonaerobic exercise can also be beneficial to people with migraine, says Bond.  

“For example, hatha yoga might be particularly efficacious for someone with migraine because it actually works on some of the mechanisms we see, such as neck pain and stiffness, anxiety, catastrophizing about pain, and stress reduction,” he says.

RELATED: 8 Ways Strength Training Boosts Your Health and Fitness

9. Talk to Your Doctor About Migraine Medication

Ask your doctor about the timing of your medications and whether it’s okay to take them before you work out; certain medications used to treat migraine can affect your heart rate, blood pressure, and muscle activity, Gaz says. This is especially a risk if you use beta blockers or calcium channel blockers.

Depending on the frequency of your attacks, there are also medications available that can help prevent migraine.


6 Easy Tips You Can Do to Prevent Headaches


Headache pain is often brought on by stress, chemical imbalances, or sensitivity to sound, lighting, or smells. To overcome this type of nagging discomfort, you need to make some modifications.

Preventing a headache is not about popping a couple aspirin. It involves learning the triggers for the pain and avoiding activities or behaviors that cause a throbbing or unrelenting headache.

So, how should you begin? Read the following information to get a clue on how to stay healthier and prevent headaches. Use the following tips to prevent headaches and stay healthier and pain-free.

What causes headache pain?

Before you read the tips below, it helps to know a little about headache pain and how it develops. Neurologists categorize headaches as primary headaches and secondary headaches. Primary headaches are headaches that result from stress, the environment, and sensitivity to smells, lights, or sounds. Knowing about these triggers will help you prevent a headache from happening.

Secondary headaches are headaches that develop from an underlying medical condition. For example, you may have suffered a concussion or whiplash. If you’re plagued with headaches, the injury may have affected your nerves and therefore your resilience to pain.

To prevent regular headache or migraine pain, again, you’ll need to know what activities or circumstances break down your immunity. For instance, some women may experience a pounding migraine if they’re exposed to a noxious odor. Others may get a headache from lighting that is too bright. If you attend a concert or sporting event, you may suffer head pain as well.

 6 Easy Tips You Can Do to Prevent Headaches

  1. Figure Out What is Causing Your Headaches. ...
  2. Review What You're Eating and Drinking Each Day. ...
  3. Review Treatments for Headaches. ...
  4. Consider Alternative Therapies and Supplements. ...
  5. Practice Meditation and Deep Breathing. ...
  6. Balance Things Out in Your Life.





#ALSawareness (for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis)

Monday, 28 August 2023

Researchers discover new biological mechanism to regenerate and repair myelin


A study led by Dr. Hyun Kyoung Lee, associate professor at Baylor College of Medicine and investigator at the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital, has discovered a new biological mechanism to regenerate and repair myelin, a protective sheath that insulates neuronal fibers and plays a vital role in ensuring rapid and accurate neurotransmission. The Duncan NRI team found novel roles for the Dishevelled associated activator of morphogenesis 2 (Daam2) protein and CK2α kinase in regulating myelin repair and regeneration. The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

Myelin is produced by a type of glial precursor cells called oligodendrocytes (OLs) which are among the most numerous cells in the nervous system. Damage or loss of myelin sheath is the hallmark of various neurological diseases in adults (e.g. multiple sclerosis) and infants (e.g. cerebral palsy) and is common after brain injuries.

The Wingless (Wnt) signaling pathway is one of the key regulators of OL development and myelin regeneration. In certain diseased conditions and brain injury, its levels are elevated in the white matter, which impairs myelin production by forcing oligodendroctyes to remain in a "stalled/quiescent state".

A few years back, Dr. Lee and others found that a glial protein, Daam2 inhibits the differentiation of oligodendrocytes during development as well as myelin regeneration and repair. However, until now precise mechanisms underlying this process have remained a mystery.

To understand how Daam2 inhibits myelination, the team first needed to determine the regulation of Daam2 itself. Using biochemical approaches, they found two amino acid residues (Ser704 and Thr705) of Daam2 protein undergo phosphorylation - a common post-translational regulatory mechanism that turns on or off the activity of the proteins.

To explore if Daam2 phosphorylation affected the progression of OL lineage, they analyzed differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in wild-type and mutant animals whose Daam2 is constitutively phosphorylated. DEGs downregulated in the mutant OLs were enriched in genes involved in lipid/cholesterol metabolism whereas DEGs upregulated in the mutant OLs were involved in multiple signaling processes, including the Wnt pathway.

Since Daam2 is a known positive modulator of canonical Wnt signaling, they examined whether these DEGs were due to perturbations in Wnt signaling. They undertook a thorough developmental stage-specific analysis which revealed dynamic changes in the machinery and function of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in early versus late stages of OL development, and established that this signaling pathway is affected by Daam2 phosphorylation.

To identify the kinase(s) responsible for Daam2 phosphorylation, they conducted a motif analysis which found CK2, a Wnt/β-catenin signaling Ser/Thr kinase that was also one of the candidates in their biochemical and genetic screen. They further confirmed that its catalytic subunit, CK2α, interacted with Daam2 in lab-cultured OLs and also phosphorylated it. Moreover, both Daam2 and CK2α were sequentially upregulated in a manner that was concomitant with the progression of OL lineage. Using in vitro cultured OLs and in vivo mouse models, they found compelling evidence suggesting that CK2α promotes OL differentiation by phosphorylating Daam2.

Further studies using an animal model of neonatal hypoxic injury model revealed a beneficial role for CK2α-mediated Daam2 phosphorylation. They found that it plays a protective role in developmental and behavioral recovery after neonatal hypoxia, a form of brain injury seen in cerebral palsy and other conditions, and additionally, it facilitates remyelination after white matter injury in adult animals.

Together, these findings have identified a novel regulatory node in the Wnt pathway that regulates stage-specific oligodendrocyte development and offers insights into a new biological mechanism to regenerate myelin.

"This study opens exciting therapeutic avenues we could develop in the future to repair and restore myelin, which has the potential to alleviate and treat several neurological that are currently untreatable," Dr. Lee said.

The first author, Chih-Yen Wang is now an assistant professor in the National Cheng Kung University. Others involved in the study were Zhongyuan Zuo, Juyeon Jo, Kyoung In Kim, Christine Madamba, Qi Ye, Sung Yun Jung and Hugo J. Bellen. They are affiliated with one or more of the following institutions: Baylor College of Medicine and Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital. This work was supported by grants from NIH/NINDS, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Cynthia and Anthony G. Petrello Endowment, and the Mark A. Wallace Endowment, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development of the National Institutes of Health for the BCM IDDRC Neurobehavior and Neurovisualization Cores. GERM core at Baylor College of Medicine helped with mouse line generation, scRNA-sequencing was partially supported by the SCG core and GARP core.


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