Causal link found between vitamin D, serotonin synthesis and autism in new study
Serotonin and vitamin D have been proposed to play a role in autism, however, no causal mechanism has been established. Now, researchers show that serotonin, oxytocin, and vasopressin, three brain hormones that affect social behavior related to autism, are all activated by vitamin D hormone. Supplementation with vitamin D and tryptophan would be a practical and affordable solution to help prevent autism and possibly ameliorate some symptoms of the disorder.
3rd March 2014
Piloting and validation of a novel self-administered online cognitive screening tool in normal older persons: the Cognitive Function Test
Subtle cognitive changes have been described that may predate the onset of clinically recognizable Alzheimer's disease (AD) and may reflect pathological changes in the brain that are detectable up to 10 years before the onset of AD. Early screening for cognitive status can have benefits in terms of early management and prevention strategies for cognitive decline.
A novel computerized cognitive screening tool, the Cognitive Function Test (CFT), was compared with established paper tests of episodic memory, executive function and processing speed, domains previously shown to be predictive of AD, with 50 normal participants, Mini Mental State Examination ≥24, mean age 58.1, SD 5.6 years (range 50–65). An online version, self-administered by 195 eligible respondents without significant memory complaints or dementia, was assessed.
Significant correlations (r = 0.75, p < 0.0001) were found between the CFT and paper tests in a pilot study, showing concurrent validity. The pilot computerized tests were compared with the online version, and no differences were found in mean scores on the total test and domain-specific scores using an algorithm derived from the pilot CFT scores, thus showing internal consistency and reliability of the online format. Norms and 1.5 SD cut-offs for the CFT are presented.
The online CFT was shown to be suitable for self-administration in online format (with a mouse response mode) for this midlife age group. Individuals may wish to monitor their cognitive performance before memory concerns are sufficient to warrant visiting a GP or memory clinic. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
21st January 2014
Use of Vitamin E By Patients With Mild to Moderate Alzheimer Disease Slows Functional Decline
Among patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease, a daily dosage of 2,000 IUs of vitamin E, compared to placebo, was effective in slowing functional decline and in reducing caregiver time in assisting patients, according to a study appearing in the January 1 issue of JAMA.
13th January 2014
Dementia (Including Alzheimer’s Disease) can be Prevented: Statement Supported by International Experts
Food for the Brain seeks to increase funding for research on prevention of Alzheimer's disease, with the aim of vastly reducing the numbers of people having to endure this disease. This statement, signed by over 100 scientists from 136 countries, calls upon the governments of the G8 countries to make prevention of dementia one of their major health aims; it was written by the Head of Food for the Brain's Scientific Advisory Board, Professor David Smith, and published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease in December, 2013. Dementia (Including Alzheimer’s Disease) can be Prevented: Statement Supported by International Experts.
9th January 2014
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