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NIH Research Matters

April 2014 Archive

April 28, 2014

An amoeba nibbling off and engulfing pieces of a human cell.

Parasite Nibbles Human Cells to Death

A diarrhea-causing parasite latches onto human cells and nibbles away at them until they die. The finding could lead to new ways to block the parasite.

Woman looking for someone in a crowd.

How the Brain Pays Attention to Faces and Places

Scientists identified areas of the brain that help us target our attention to objects, such as faces. The study offers insight into how we focus amid a barrage of distraction.

Human neurons

Insights into Mutations That Cause Parkinson’s Disease

Researchers determined how an abnormal gene begins the process that leads to neuron death and Parkinson’s disease. The finding hints at potential therapies for the movement disorder.

April 14, 2014

Blood transfusion bags

Blood Transfusions Linked to Infection Risk in Hospitals

Hospitalized patients who had fewer blood transfusions had lower risks of infection, a study showed. More conservative transfusion strategies might reduce infection rates.

Young man receiving training with spinal stimulation.

Paralyzed Men Regain Movement With Spinal Stimulation

An experimental spinal stimulation therapy helped 4 young men who were paralyzed below the chest because of spinal cord injuries to regain control of some movement.

Crescent-shaped clusters of pink Merkel cells at the ends of blue nerve fibers.

Discriminating Touch

Two research teams revealed how cells in skin feel fine detail and texture. The findings could lead to new approaches to restore the sense of touch lost to aging and certain diseases.

April 7, 2014

Caregivers clapping with baby.

Adult Health Improved by Early Childhood Programs

An early childhood program—already shown to bring higher academic achievement and career benefits—can also help prevent disease later in life, according to new findings.

A brain sitting on, and wrapped with, a road map.

An Atlas of the Developing Human Brain

The first comprehensive 3-D atlas of gene expression in the developing human brain will help advance the study of disorders such as autism and schizophrenia.

Bathroom scale

New Insights Into Bariatric Surgery for Obesity

A bariatric surgical procedure reduces obesity and improves glucose tolerance in mice by increasing bile acids and altering gut microbes. The finding hints at new non-surgical approaches to obesity.

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About NIH Research Matters

Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Assistant Editors: Vicki Contie, Carol Torgan, Ph.D.

NIH Research Matters is a weekly update of NIH research highlights from the Office of Communications and Public Liaison, Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health.

This page last reviewed on April 29, 2014

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