Blog Archives

Have a high IQ? Try some drugs


According to White & Batty’s recent correlations, you may already have.

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Pain Killers from Snails? What next?


From the neuroethological perspective, pain exists to protect an individual from an undesirable situation that might result in an adverse bioeconomical outcome such as death or serious injury.  However in the case of chronic pain, which often exists as the bi-product of diseases such as severe diabetes, infection, nerve damage or permanent cellular damage, there seems to be little physiological benefit (Reichling et al. 2011).  Patients who suffer from chronic pain thus are often faced with a lifetime of intense debilitating painful sensation which add unnecessary stress to their body systems and which in turn prevent them from functioning in their society with any level of acceptable normalcy (Baron et al. 2010).  Due to the intensity of the discomfort and the large population of patients who suffer from chronic pain,  a large portion of the efforts of  those in the medical and scientific community  as well as financial investment have gone into specifically understanding and discovering methods for the treatment and relief of this type of pain. Read the rest of this entry

Flesh Eating Bacteria: nom…nom (Warning graphic pictures)


So many of you might have had a staph infection before, or at least most of us had at least once had a hair follicle infection, you know the ones..the little red bumps at the base of your hair follicle that get a little tender.  But how many of you knew that the bacteria which lives commonly on our skin is actually a variety of staphylococcus bacteria…the flesh eating bacteria?  Group A staphylococcus bacteria can cause mild infections to toxic shock syndrome or even  necrotizing fasciitis (flesh eating disease).  Sounds like something out of a zombie movie right?  The pictures below are not for the faint of heart!  More strains of antibiotic resistant staphylococcus are popping up.  This means that we have less and less ways to treat these cases of flesh eating diseases or toxic shock syndrome. Read the rest of this entry

Multiple Sclerosis: A long known unknown


Multiple Sclerosis is a nervous system disease that results in both cognitive impairment as well as physical impairment.  It is well known as a demylinator of axonal nerves. Typically physical impairment is more often observed.  Cognitive impairment exhibits itself due to the demyelination of white matter but also axonal damage and grey matter damage as well.  The disease leads to impaired decision making, loss of employment, driving abilities, and social functioning.  Difficulty with complex attention, information processing speed, memory retrieval, verbal fluency, visospatial memory, and working memory as well.  As of now there is no standardized way to measure cognitive impairment but some groups of neurologists are starting to address this issue.  The physical impairment that occurs as a result of MS can be directly correlated to changes in brain activity as measured by an MRI.  However the cognitive functioning is not so closely correlated with this brain sclera.   It is predicted that the networks that handle working memory (a functionally interconnected group of brain regions that work together) may be interrupted or even severed due to the damage of brain white matter.  There has been some measured evidence of axonal remapping and repaired cognitive functioning in patients with MS as well. Read the rest of this entry