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NIH Research Matters

June 2011 Archive

June 27, 2011

Illustration of a colorful network of neurons.

Mechanism of Fast-Acting Antidepressant Revealed

A new study in mice has identified the molecular players involved in the rapid antidepressant effects of ketamine, a common anesthetic. The findings could lead to better, faster-acting antidepressant medications in the future.

Photo of a teacher and student working on math problems at the chalkboard.

Insights into Math Learning Difficulties

The innate ability to estimate quantities is impaired in children who have a math learning disability, according to a new report. Those who arenít considered learning disabled but still do poorly seem to struggle for different reasons.

Scanning electron micrograph of  elongated, rod-shaped bacteria.

Key Step Identified in Legionnairesí Infection

Researchers have uncovered a key step in how the bacterium responsible for Legionnairesí disease takes control of the cells it infects. The finding may lead to new ways to treat Legionnairesí and other related diseases.

June 20, 2011

Photo of a young boy at school.

Early Childhood Program Has Enduring Benefits

The longest study of its kind shows that an early education program for children from low-income families provides benefits that last well into adulthood.

 Photo of a handwritten list that says: 1. Quit Smoking, 2. Quit Drinking, 3. Lose Weight.

Brain Pathway Links Nicotine and Weight Loss

Smokers often gain weight when they quit. A new study in mice may help explain why. The finding may eventually lead to more targeted ways to stop smoking and control weight.

Illustration of a kidney.

Hormone Level Predicts Progressive Kidney Failure

A high level of a hormone is associated with an increased risk of kidney failure and death among patients with chronic kidney disease. The discovery could allow for earlier diagnosis and treatment of patients at risk.

June 13, 2011

Transmission electron micrograph of round virus particles.

Study Undermines XMRV Connection to Human Disease

The retrovirus previously tied to prostate cancer and chronic fatigue syndrome is unlikely to be responsible for either, according to new research. The link to human disease was apparently due to contamination of samples.

Photo of a motherís hands touching her infant.

Saliva Testing Catches CMV Infection in Newborns

A saliva sample from a newborn can be used to quickly and effectively detect cytomegalovirus infection, a major cause of hearing loss in children. Better screening might lead to earlier treatment for affected babies.

Photo of a young boy looking out a window.

Autism Blurs Distinctions Between Brain Regions

A new analysis of gene expression in the brain suggests that autism blurs the molecular differences that normally distinguish different brain regions.

June 6, 2011

Photo of man holding hand up to his ear.

Steroid Treatments Equally Effective Against Sudden Deafness

Injecting steroids into the middle ear works just as well as taking them orally when it comes to restoring hearing for sudden deafness patients. The finding will help doctors choose the best treatment for patients.

Photo of a standing man supported by hand rails and physical therapists.

Trial Restores Movement to Paralyzed Man's Legs

Specialized physical therapy and electrical stimulation to the spine have enabled a man with a spinal cord injury to stand and move paralyzed muscles, according to a new report.

Photo of empty swings outside an elementary school.

Flu Pandemic Study Supports Social Distancing

Mandatory school closures and other social distancing measures reduced influenza transmission rates in Mexico during the 2009 pandemic. The finding suggests that similar measures could help fight future influenza pandemics.

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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 June 27, 2011

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