Repairing Gums, Preventing Cancer & Other News of Note
Posted on Friday, February 5th, 2010
New Technology Aims to Repair the After-Effects of Gum Disease (Medical News Today)
Advances in tissue engineering are offering the promise of being able to restore lost bone and gum tissue following periodontal disease.
About a third of the population are affected by chronic inflammatory gum disease which can result in loss of the bone and other tissues that support our teeth.
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Over recent years, Professor [Saso] Ivanovski’s research at the Griffith Institute for Health and Medical Research has been focussed on growing layers of cells such as stem cells and gingival (gum) fibroblasts for restoring damaged smiles.
“Previous work was involved in looking at the growth factors and optimal cell types for regenerating destroyed tissue.”
“Now we are using new technology to harvest sheets of these cell cultures and transfer them safely to the surface of the tooth root,” he said…More…
40% of Cancers Are Preventable (AP, via Yahoo! Health)
About 40 percent of cancers could be prevented if people stopped smoking and overeating, limited their alcohol, exercised regularly and got vaccines targeting cancer-causing infections, experts say.
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According to the World Health Organization, cancer is responsible for one out of every eight deaths worldwide — more than AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined. WHO warned that without major changes, global cancer deaths will jump from about 7.6 million this year to 17 million by 2030…More…
Scientists have long pondered the seeming contradiction that taking broad-spectrum antibiotics over a long period of time can lead to severe secondary bacterial infections. Now researchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine may have figured out why.
The investigators show that “good” bacteria in the gut keep the immune system primed to more effectively fight infection from invading pathogenic bacteria. Altering the intricate dynamic between resident and foreign bacteria – via antibiotics, for example – compromises an animal’s immune response, specifically, the function of white blood cells called neutrophils…More…
For years, scientists have warned of the possible negative health effects of bisphenol A, a chemical used to make everything from plastic water bottles and food packaging to sunglasses and CDs. Studies have linked BPA exposure to reproductive disorders, obesity, abnormal brain development as well as breast and prostate cancers, and in January the Food and Drug Administration announced that it was concerned about “the potential effects of BPA on the brain, behavior and prostate gland of fetuses, infants and young children.”
Now, mouse experiments by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston researchers have produced evidence that a mother’s exposure to BPA may also increase the odds that her children will develop asthma. Using a well-established mouse model for asthma, the investigators found that the offspring of female mice exposed to BPA showed significant signs of the disorder, unlike those of mice shielded from BPA… More…
Ancient Teeth Show Effects of Early Stress (Futurity)
Ancient human teeth are telling secrets that may relate to modern-day health: Some stressful events that occurred early in development are linked to shorter life spans.
“Prehistoric remains are providing strong, physical evidence that people who acquired tooth enamel defects while in the womb or early childhood tended to die earlier, even if they survived to adulthood,” says Emory University anthropologist George Armelagos.
Armelagos led a systematic review of defects in teeth enamel and early mortality recently published in Evolutionary Anthropology. The paper is the first summary of prehistoric evidence for the Barker hypothesis – the idea that many adult diseases originate during fetal development and early childhood…More…