Research Collected: May 2014

diabetes, anti-depressant drugs, sleep and the microbiome, endocrine disrupters, nervous system control, obesity, stress

  • Complete Genes May Pass from Food to Human Blood
    • “During digestion proteins and DNA are thought to be degraded into small constituents, amino acids and nucleic acids, respectively, and then absorbed by a complex active process and distributed to various parts of the body through the circulation system. Here, based on the analysis of over 1000 human samples from four independent studies, we report evidence that meal-derived DNA fragments which are large enough to carry complete genes can avoid degradation and through an unknown mechanism enter the human circulation system.”
  • Antidepressant Dose, Age, and the Risk of Deliberate Self-harm
    • “The rate of deliberate self-harm among children and adults 24 years of age or younger who initiated high-dose therapy was approximately twice as high as among matched patients initiating modal-dose therapy…”
    • 162,625 US residents ages 10 to 64 who began therapy with an SSRI from Jan 1, 1998 to Dec 31, 2010.
  • Prevalence of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes Among Children and Adolescents From 2001 to 2009
    • “Adjusted for completeness of ascertainment, there was a 21.1% (95% CI, 15.6%-27.0%) increase in type 1 diabetes over 8 years… Adjusted for completeness of ascertainment, there was a 30.5% (95% CI, 17.3%-45.1%) overall increase in type 2 diabetes.”
    • Unlike the rise in Autism and ASD, I suspect these results will not be widely ascribed to changes in diagnostic procedures, if they are acknowledged at all.
  • Circadian Disorganization Alters Intestinal Microbiota
    • “Male C57BL/6J mice underwent once weekly phase reversals of the light:dark cycle (i.e., circadian rhythm disrupted mice) to determine the impact of circadian rhythm disruption on the intestinal microbiome and were fed either standard chow or a high-fat, high-sugar diet to determine how diet influences circadian disruption-induced effects on the microbiome. Weekly phase reversals of the light:dark (LD) cycle did not alter the microbiome in mice fed standard chow; however, mice fed a high-fat, high-sugar diet in conjunction with phase shifts in the light:dark cycle had significantly altered microbiota.”
  • The effects of consuming a high protein diet (4.4 g/kg/d) on body composition in resistance-trained individuals
    • “Consuming 5.5 times the recommended daily allowance of protein has no effect on body composition in resistance-trained individuals who otherwise maintain the same training regimen. This is the first interventional study to demonstrate that consuming a hypercaloric high protein diet does not result in an increase in body fat.”
  • Direct action of endocrine disrupting chemicals on human sperm
    • “Here, we study the action of 96 ubiquitous [synthetic endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs)] on human sperm. We show that structurally diverse EDCs activate the sperm‐specific CatSper channel and, thereby, evoke an intracellular Ca2+ increase, a motility response, and acrosomal exocytosis. Moreover, EDCs desensitize sperm for physiological CatSper ligands and cooperate in low‐dose mixtures to elevate Ca2+ levels in sperm. We conclude that EDCs interfere with various sperm functions and, thereby, might impair human fertilization.”
  • Voluntary activation of the sympathetic nervous system and attenuation of the innate immune response in humans
    • “Subjects in the intervention group were trained for 10 d in meditation (third eye meditation), breathing techniques (i.a., cyclic hyperventilation followed by breath retention), and exposure to cold (i.a., immersions in ice cold water). The control group was not trained. Subsequently, all subjects underwent experimental endotoxemia (i.v. administration of 2 ng/kg Escherichia coli endotoxin). In the intervention group, practicing the learned techniques resulted in intermittent respiratory alkalosis and hypoxia resulting in profoundly increased plasma epinephrine levels. In the intervention group, plasma levels of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 increased more rapidly after endotoxin administration, correlated strongly with preceding epinephrine levels, and were higher. Levels of proinflammatory mediators TNF-α, IL-6, and IL-8 were lower in the intervention group and correlated negatively with IL-10 levels. Finally, flu-like symptoms were lower in the intervention group.”
  • Global, regional, and national prevalence of overweight and obesity in children and adults during 1980—2013: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013
    • “Worldwide, the proportion of adults with a body-mass index (BMI) of 25 kg/m2 or greater increased between 1980 and 2013 from 28·8% (95% UI 28·4—29·3) to 36·9% (36·3—37·4) in men, and from 29·8% (29·3—30·2) to 38·0% (37·5—38·5) in women. Prevalence has increased substantially in children and adolescents in developed countries; 23·8% (22·9—24·7) of boys and 22·6% (21·7—23·6) of girls were overweight or obese in 2013. The prevalence of overweight and obesity has also increased in children and adolescents in developing countries, from 8·1% (7·7—8·6) to 12·9% (12·3—13·5) in 2013 for boys and from 8·4% (8·1—8·8) to 13·4% (13·0—13·9) in girls.”
    • While I understand it my be the only metric available for a study of this scope, it should be acknowledged that BMI is not an ideal metric for obesity.
  • Systems biology, toxins, obesity, and functional medicine.
    • “By recognizing the role of toxins in obesity and altered function of the neuro-endocrine-immune and mitochondrial and redox systems, and by creating a comprehensive strategy for both the reduction of exposure to and elimination of toxins, as well as the development of effective clinical strategies, treatment resistance in obesity may be more successfully addressed.”
  • Cortisol increase in empathic stress is modulated by emotional closeness and observation modality
    • “Participants were tested in dyads, paired with a loved one or a stranger of the opposite sex. While the target of the dyad (n = 151) was exposed to a psychosocial stressor, the observer (n = 211) watched through a one-way mirror or via live video transmission. Overall, 26% of the observers displayed physiologically significant cortisol increases. This empathic stress was more pronounced in intimate observer-target dyads (40%) and during the real-life representation of the stressor (30%).”
    • So for some people observing people in stress causes stress, especially when the person observed is a loved on. This may be evolutionarily adaptive but may be s significant source of stress in the US population.

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