Genetic changes in 3 genes linked to autism spectrum disorders

Mutations in 3 genes linked to autism spectrum disorders – Mutations in three new genes have been linked to autism, according to new studies including one with investigators at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. All three studies include lead investigators of the Autism Sequencing Consortium (ASC).

Two genes TPH1 and TPH2 more likely to develop PTSD symptoms

PTSD genes identified by UCLA study — Findings could lead to new screenings, targeted therapies — Two genes TPH1 and TPH2 more likely to develop PTSD symptoms – Why do some persons succumb to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) while others who suffered the same ordeal do not? UCLA scientists have linked two genes involved in serotonin production to a higher risk of developing PTSD.

Smoking linked to mental decline in men

Smoking associated with more rapid cognitive decline in men – Smoking in men appears to be associated with more rapid cognitive decline or mental decline. Smoking is increasingly recognized as a risk factor for dementia in the elderly and the number of dementia cases worldwide, estimated at 36 million in 2010, is on the rise and is projected to double every 20 years.

Gestational diabetes and poverty increased ADHD risk in offspring

Gestational diabetes and low socioeconomic status raise risk of ADHD in children – Low socioeconomic status (SES) and maternal gestational diabetes together may cause a 14-fold increased risk of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in six year olds, revealed by researchers.

Meditation may help brain to recover from diseases

Tuning out: How brains benefit from meditation — Meditation may help brain to recover from diseases – Brain imaging study reveals that experienced meditators seem to be able switch off areas of the brain associated with daydreaming as well as psychiatric disorders such as autism and schizophrenia.

Depression uncouples brain’s hate circuit

MRI study finds that depression uncouples brain’s hate circuit — Depressed people may process feelings of hate differently – Depression frequently seems to uncouple the brain’s “Hate Circuit”. The study entitled “Depression Uncouples Brain Hate Circuit” is published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

Blood test may detect Alzheimer’s Disease progression

Blood Tests May Hold Clues to Pace of Alzheimer?s Disease Progression – Researchers found a way to predict how quickly patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) will lose cognitive function by looking at ratios of two fatty compounds in their blood.

Adolescent binge drinking can damage spatial working memory

Adolescent binge drinking can damage spatial working memory – Binge or “heavy episodic” drinking is prevalent during adolescence, raising concerns about alcohol’s effects on crucial neuromaturational processes during this developmental period. Heavy alcohol use has been associated with decrements in cognitive functioning in both adult and adolescent populations, particularly on tasks of spatial working memory (SWM).

Environment factors important than genetic in autism

Study of twins suggests genetic component of autism spectrum disorders may be moderate — Environmental component may be substantial – Shared environmental factors ? experiences and exposures common to both twin individuals ? accounted for 55% of strict autism and 58% of more broadly defined autism spectrum disorders (ASD), revealed by researchers. Genetic heritability accounted for 37% of autism and 38% of ASD.

Wives’ inability to fall asleep at night has interpersonal consequences in marriage

Wives’ inability to fall asleep at night has interpersonal consequences in marriage

Study finds that wives’ sleep problems have negative impact on marital interactions — Wives’ inability to fall asleep at night has interpersonal consequences in marriage – The quality of interactions among married couples is affected by wives’ inability to fall asleep at night, but not by husbands’ sleep problems, suggests new research presented in Minneapolis, Minn., at SLEEP 2011, the 25th Anniversary Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies LLC (APSS). Results show that, among wives, taking longer to fall asleep at night predicted their reports of more negative and less positive marital interactions the next day.