Showing posts with label Studies and Associations. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Studies and Associations. Show all posts

July 22, 2019

LGBTQ, Alzheimers,Seizures,Sleep Meds and More {Conference on Alzheimers in Los Angeles}

It was a big week for Alzheimer’s research as researchers from around the world descended on Los Angeles to attend the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) this week. There were stories about how infectious agents may be involved in the disease, genes linked to women’s Alzheimer’s risk, and the identification of new biomarkers that may lead to advanced diagnostics.
Here's a look at some of the stories you may have missed.
Alzheimer’s and Epilepsy
People with Alzheimer’s disease have a significantly higher incidence of epileptic seizures. In fact, they have six-and-a-half times more than people without dementia. Research presented by several different researchers explored the connection between Alzheimer’s and seizures. A study presented by Ruby Castilla-Puentas, director, clinical research, neuroscience at JanssenPharmaceuticals, a Johnson & Johnson company, along with Miguel Habeych at the University of Cincinnati, found that individuals with dementia had a higher risk of new-onset or first-time seizures. They postulate that some of the seizures may be caused by the drugs used to treat dementia, as well as other conditions associated with both seizures and dementia, but it’s clear that the risk is much higher for this patient group.

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Some Sleep Medications Increase Dementia Risk
Several studies linked to sleep medications, sleep problems and Alzheimer’s were presented. Sleep disturbances are common in Alzheimer’s and other dementia patients, affecting up to 45% of dementia patients. One study presented by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, found that frequent use of sleep medications might increase dementia risk, but that it varies by race. The study found that study participants who reported “often” or “almost always” taking sleep medications were 43% more likely to develop dementia compared to people who reported “never or rarely” taking them. The risk was also only observed in white adults. There is also a gender variation, as reported by a study by researchers from Utah State University. Women who used sleep medication had 3.6 times increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s compared to those who did not.
Researchers at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, also presented research looking at whether it was possible to improve circadian regulation by resetting the biological clock, called chronotherapy, in adults with mild cognitive impairment. The clinical trial did find that the chronotherapy was effective in improving sleep quality in the patient group.
Eisai Co. Presented Research on Tau Microtubule Quantification
The accumulation of two different abnormal proteins, beta-amyloid and tau, is associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Eisai presented data on a new antibody to tau, E2814. It is believed that tau spreads through the brain of Alzheimer’s patients by way of synaptically-connected pathways, which is mediated by tau seeds that contain the microtubule-binding region of tau (MTBR). E2814 targets MTBR-containing tau species, preventing the buildup and spread of tau seeds, which might slow the spread of the disease.
Aerobic Exercise and Preventing Alzheimer’s
Generally, lifestyle behaviors that are good for the heart are good for the brain, and that has led to researchers noting that keeping blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check via diet and exercise and appropriate medications may decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers with Wake Forest University School of Medicine presented research from the EXERT study to determine if exercise can protect from memory and cognition problems associated with Alzheimer’s. The EXERT study takes 300 people at high risk for Alzheimer’s and randomly splits them into two groups for 18 months. Half perform aerobic exercise, the other half stretching and flexibility exercises. They participate in memory and cognition tests, as well as brain blood flow, atrophy and protein testing. The study is ongoing and is still looking for another 100 people between the ages of 65 and 89 who don’t regularly exercise who have mild cognitive impairment.
Increased Risk of Alzheimer’s in the LGBT Community
Research presented at the AAIC meeting reported finding higher rates of subjective cognitive decline among lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender (LGBT) Americans compared to cisgender heterosexual individuals. The trial used self-reported data on subjective cognitive decline (SCD). The research presented by Jason Flatt from UCSF found that 14% of participants reported subjective cognitive decline compared to 10% among the cisgender heterosexual participants. Even after adjusting for income, age, and race, the LGBT group was 29% more likely to report a subjective cognitive decline. The connection is undetermined, although the researchers speculate that it is related to higher rates of depression, stress, inability to work and a lack of regular healthcare access in the LGBT population.
Another group reported on the effectiveness of a first-of-its-kind Alzheimer’s intervention for LGBT older individuals with dementia. They identified unique risk factors of LGBT older adults with dementia, including more likely to live alone (almost 60%), not partnered or married (65%), no children (72%) and no caregiver (59%) compared to older non-LGBT adults with dementia. The intervention study looked at individualized programs of exercise, and behavioral and coping strategies to improve physical function, independence, and quality of life.

August 27, 2017

One More Repetition: "Same Sex Parents Wont Sway Kid's Gender Identity"

Same-Sex Parents Won't Sway Kids' Gender Identity

Research showed no differences from children raised by heterosexual couples

MONDAY, Aug. 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Same-sex couples are unlikely to influence the gender identity of their adoptive children one way or another, a new study finds.
Starting with preschool, researchers tracked the gender identity development of kids from 106 lesbian, gay or heterosexual families.
"Parental sexual orientation and family type did not affect children's gender conformity or nonconformity in any significant way," said study author Rachel Farr of the University of Kentucky.
At the start of the study, parents filled out questionnaires. The researchers also observed the preschoolers' play and the toys they used. The children were then interviewed five years later.  
The researchers found that in most cases children displayed behavior and play styles commonly associated with their birth gender, and those patterns were established in early childhood.
Family structure was far less associated with gender identity development than the types of play preschoolers engaged in, the researchers said.

 Those few preschoolers who tended to play with toys not usually associated with their birth gender were more likely to buck gender norms as they aged. However, bucking gender norms was not found to be more common among children raised by either gay or lesbian parent.
The findings were published recently in the journal Sex Roles.
"Our results suggest that the gender development of children adopted by both lesbian and gay parents proceeds in typical ways, and is similar to that of children adopted by heterosexual couples," Farr said in a journal news release.
"It, therefore, appears that having both a male and female role model in the home is not necessary for facilitating typical gender development among adopted children," she added, "nor does it discourage gender nonconformity."

By Alan Mozes
HealthDay Reporter

WebMD News from HealthDay

September 14, 2011

“As Wedding Roles Evolve, Here Come the Flower Men”

AMSA President In NYT Story:

“As Wedding Roles Evolve, Here Come the Flower Men” in the June 24, 2011 New York Times quotes Robert Heasley, President of the American Men’s Studies Association:
Robert Heasley, a sociology professor at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and the president of the American Men’s Studies’ Association, said weddings were one of the last institutions to hold on to strict roles for the sexes, but that they were changing.
“We continue to have the marriage ceremony, but we’re slowly changing it to represent the greater balance of the genders,” he said. “It’s a significant shift to have the male be the flower girl because it introduces a male who represents gentility, flowers and femininity. It’s just another step toward the dismantling of the patriarchal formation of the marriage.”
The story notes: “As gender roles in weddings have gradually blurred, it is less rare for the bride and bridegroom to have opposite-sex attendants or so-called honor attendants. Still, flower guys have been slower to catch on, according to Joyce Scardina Becker, a wedding planner in San Francisco and the founding president of the Wedding Industry Professionals Association.”
Read the entire story here.

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