The CDC estimated a 1% worldwide prevalence for autism spectrum disorders (ASD). In the United States, 1 out of 88 kids is diagnosed with ASD (according to data from a survey conducted in 2008). Autism spectrum disorders are characterized by diminished social interaction skills, stereotypic engagement in repetitive tasks, lengthy visual engagement with a target, refusal to deviate from set rituals and diminished spontaneity in expressing emotions. In addition to behavioral difficulties, reduced motor abilities are also reported.
Rescuing a patient from a stroke and restoring cognitive functions are two significant medical challenges today. Blockage of a brain artery, usually by a clot or atherosclerotic plaque, results in reduction in oxygen supply to brain cells. If the supply of oxygen is interrupted for a long time, brain cells die resulting in severe loss of motor and cognitive functions. Therapeutic approaches to prevent the formation of plaques or blood clots are not a hundred percent successful in preventing a stroke. Recent research has focused on aiding regeneration of brain cells after an ischemic stroke and stem cells have been used with reasonable success.
Envision yourself attaching a pair of electrodes on to your head connected to a 9 volts battery pack right before your final exams. You have a chart in your hand that says 0.5 mA-prefrontal cortex for physics, 1.0 mA-temporal cortex for history, 0.8 mA-orbitofrontal cortex for economics and so on. What you are about to do, is electrodope yourself to an A! If this fantasy sounds familiar or exciting, you are probably reading the right article!
With the constant stresses endured in everyday life, it is no wonder society’s blood pressures are shooting through the roof as soon as the morning alarm rings. In the US alone, an estimated 50 million individuals are affected by increased blood pressure, 62% of which are associated with attributable risk factor for cerebrovascular disease. Despite these concerning statistics, less than 60% of identified individuals receive treatment for their hypertension and only about a third of the population achieve adequate control of blood pressure. Now, new research published by Charles DeCarli in Lancet Neurology aids in the push towards greater awareness of blood pressure levels even amongst the healthy middle-aged population.
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