Drug Trials to Prevent Alzheimer's

CBS's 60 minutes explores a fascinating story about a family in Columbia helping to fight Alzheimer's disease. "This week on 60 Minutes, correspondent Lesley Stahl reports on a community in and around Medellin, Colombia, where residents may be the key to figuring out if the disease might someday be preventable. That’s because it’s the largest concentration in the world of people who carry a rare genetic mutation that makes them 100 percent certain to develop early-onset Alzheimer’s. It’s a particularly cruel version of the disease that strikes people in their mid-40s and leads to death about a decade later." To read the full story, click HERE. Photo credit: Steve Stave/CBS

Vitamin D Linked to Longer Breast Cancer Survival

The New York Times recently published an article on the link between vitamin D and Breast Cancer survival rates. "Higher vitamin D levels may be linked to longer breast cancer survival, a new study reports, and the effect is particularly strong among premenopausal women. Researchers used data on 1,666 Kaiser Permanente breast cancer patients, testing their vitamin D blood levels and following their health for seven years. The study is in JAMA Oncology. Compared with women whose vitamin D levels are under 17 nanograms per milliliter, women with levels higher than 25 had a 28 percent higher likelihood of surviving over the course of the study, even after adjusting for many factors, including t

The long, difficult search for a drug to treat Alzheimer’s and dementia

In Alzheimer's news from around the globe, this week we focus on England and the ongoing fight to find a cure. "Dementia will take hold of one in three people who passes the age of 65, and costs the UK more than £26bn a year. This week the Office for National Statistics announced it is now the commonest cause of death in England and Wales, passing cancer and heart disease. People with dementia lose the ability to care for themselves and can become malnourished, while their immune system weakens. Infections such as pneumonia may be the actual agent of death, but dementia is the underlying cause. It is a cruel disease, which takes away the person their families love and know, leaving a strange

Exercise During Breast Cancer Treatment Seen to Benefit Patients Physically and Mentally

Research about how exercise can have a positive impact on cancer patients is beign reported in Breast Cancer News. "New research shows that exercise, both during and after treatment for breast and prostate cancers, is a safe and effective way of improving physical strength and life quality in patients. The findings come from two independent studies, were recently presented at this year’s American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) Research Conference. They help to explain how aerobic and resistance exercise may improve the physical and mental health of patients during cancer treatment, known to impact both these health measures. “The cancer experience – from diagnosis through treatment – h

Home Safety Tips for Patients With Alzheimer’s Disease

Doctor Amy Ehrlich, M.D outlines important measures that can be taken to identify and prevent risks of injury for Alzheimer's patients in their homes. "Home safety is a frequent concern of caregivers. Whether they’re deciding how safe it is for a loved one to stay home alone or if the patient should continue to cook or drive, safety is often at the top of the list of concerns. Many symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease increase the risk of injury, including poor memory and judgment, difficulty following directions and episodes of agitation or irritability. Older adults with Alzheimer’s disease may also have difficulties with gait and balance, placing them at higher risk for falls. To help, it’s im

Vitamin D may Increase Survival For Breast Cancer Patients

A new report outlines how Vitamin D can be linked to combating breast cancer. "The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that in the United States, around 220,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. In 2013, 230,815 women were diagnosed with breast cancer, and 40,860 died of the disease. Researchers have previously suggested that vitamin D might be beneficial in treating cancer. Some studies have suggested that the active metabolite of vitamin D - known as calcitriol - may be anticancerous. Administering calcitriol in mice has been shown to stop the proliferation and growth of cancer cells, reduce tumor blood vessel formation, and stimulate cell death." To re

There’s a wrong way to talk about Alzheimer’s disease identified methods for how to talk about Alzheimer's disease. "Experts suggest avoiding war metaphors, such as “attacking” beta amyloid, when talking about Alzheimer’s disease. “If applied in a careless manner, war metaphors can delude our sense of what’s possible therapeutically, and give false hope to people and caregivers who are suffering,” says Daniel R. George, assistant professor of medical humanities at the Penn State College of Medicine. While war comparisons can motivate efforts to deal with a health issue, this type of language and messaging can also create fear and stigma, turn patients into victims, and divert resources from critically important prevention and care,

Breast Cancer: The First Sign Isn't Always a Lump

Live Science published a new article outlining how a lump is not necessarily the first sign of Breast Cancer in women. "Around 1 in 6 women eventually diagnosed with breast cancer initially go to their doctors with a symptom other than a lump, according to a new study conducted in England. Those women who don't have lumps are also more likely than those who do to wait to see a physician, the researchers found. That might put them at risk of worse outcomes if the cancer isn't caught quickly. "It's crucial that women are aware that a lump is not the only symptom of breast cancer," study leader Monica Koo, a doctoral candidate at University College London, said in a statement. "If they are worr

Yale professor part of nationwide Alzheimer’s disease study looking for participants

The New haven Register is reporting that "A nationwide study is testing two medications that may prevent Alzheimer’s disease in those at risk for the devastating illness. Dr. Christopher Van Dyck, a professor of psychiatry and neurology at the Yale School of Medicine and director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Unit, is among those conducting the study at more than 90 sites. “This is part of a nationwide prevention trial of very, very large scale,” Van Dyck said Tuesday. “It’s far and away the biggest (study of) genetic risk or inherited risk.” Researchers are looking for people 60 to 75 years old who have two copies of the e4 type of the apolipoprotein gene. Known as APOE 4/4, it is se

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