Why Fish Oils Work Swimmingly Against Inflammation and Diabetes (ScienceDaily)

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have identified the molecular mechanism that makes omega-3 fatty acids so effective in reducing chronic inflammation and insulin resistance.

The discovery could lead to development of a simple dietary remedy for many of the more than 23 million Americans suffering from diabetes and other conditions.

Writing in the advance online edition of the September 3 issue of the journal Cell, Jerrold Olefsky, MD, and colleagues identified a key receptor on macrophages abundantly found in obese body fat. Obesity and diabetes are closely correlated. The scientists say omega-3 fatty acids activate this macrophage receptor, resulting in broad anti-inflammatory effects and improved systemic insulin sensitivity…More

Gum Bacteria Escape into Bloodstream and Increase Risk of Clots and Heart Attack (Medical News Today)

UK researchers have found another reason for us to keep brushing and flossing our teeth: the same gum bacteria that cause dental plaque can escape from the mouth into the bloodstream and trigger clots that increase risk of heart attack and heart disease.

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Dr Howard Jenkinson, professor of Oral Microbiology at Bristol’s School of Oral and Dental Science, presented the findings at the [Society for General Microbiology’s autumn] meeting. He said in a press statement that:

“Poor dental hygiene can lead to bleeding gums, providing bacteria with an escape route into the bloodstream, where they can initiate blood clots leading to heart disease.”

He said we all need to be aware that it’s not only diet, exercise, cholesterol and blood pressure that we should keep an eye on, but it’s also important to have good dental hygiene to reduce our risk of heart problems…More

Successful Periodontal Therapy May Reduce Risk of Preterm Birth, According to Dental Study (Science Daily)

A collaboration led by a periodontal researcher from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine has found a possible link between the success of gum-disease treatment and the likelihood of giving birth prematurely, according to a study published in the journal BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

While a number of factors are associated with an increased rate of preterm birth, such as low body-mass index, alcohol consumption and smoking, the study adds to the body of research that suggests oral infection may also be associated with such an increase.

The study looked at 322 pregnant women, all with gum disease. Half the group was given oral-hygiene instruction and treated with scaling and root planning, which consists of cleaning above and below the gum line. The second half received only oral-hygiene instruction.

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Within the treatment group of 160 women, 49 were classified as having successful gum treatment and only four, or 8 percent, had a preterm baby. In comparison, 111 women had unsuccessful treatment and 69, or 62 percent, had preterm babies…More

Wisdom Teeth Could Provide Your Own Private Bonanza of Stem Cells (io9)

Wisdom teeth, the vestigial molars that ancient humans used to grind plants but nowadays serve no purpose, might have their uses after all. The teeth possess a gold mine of cells that can be reprogrammed into pristine, treatment-ready stem cells.

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According to a team of researchers at Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, the soft pulp inside wisdom teeth contain mesenchymal stromal cells that are extremely similar to those in bone marrow. But unlike bone marrow, wisdom teeth are easy to obtain and not needed for any vital biological functions, making them ideal candidates to extract for the generation of iPS cells.

Led by Hajime Ohgushi, the team used three sets of wisdom teeth to successfully create these new stem cells. In another beneficial innovation, only three genes needed to be activated to trigger the process. The fourth, superfluous gene is the c-MYC gene, and that’s a major bonus – the c-MYC gene is known to make the newly generated stem cells turn cancerous…More

Healthy Lifestyle Pattern Reduces Mortality (The Medical News)

It is widely known that a healthy lifestyle that includes not smoking, limiting alcohol intake, and maintaining a proper weight reduces disease risk.

In the journal PLoS Medicine, Wei Zheng, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., and colleagues at Vanderbilt University Medical Center now report results from a large study quantifying the impact of combining healthy lifestyle factors.

They found that a healthy lifestyle pattern – being normal weight, having low belly fat, participating in regular physical activity, limiting exposure to secondhand cigarette smoke, and consuming higher amounts of fruits and vegetables – reduced mortality in Chinese women who do not smoke cigarettes or drink alcohol regularly.

“The results show that overall lifestyle modification, to include a combination of these health-related lifestyle factors, is important in disease prevention,” said Zheng, an Ingram Professor of Cancer Research and director of the Vanderbilt Epidemiology Center…More


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