Acupuncture has been studied for several decades to establish evidence-based clinical practice. This systematic review aims to evaluate evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture in influencing the functional connectivity of the central nervous system in patients with musculoskeletal pain. A systematic search of the literature was conducted to identify studies in which the central response of acupuncture in patients with musculoskeletal pain was evaluated by neuroimaging techniques.
Enormous strides in understanding aging have come from the discovery that mutations in single genes can extend healthy life-span in laboratory model organisms such as the yeast Saccharomyces, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans and the mouse. IIS [insulin/IGF (insulin-like growth factor)-like signalling] stands out as an important, evolutionarily conserved pathway involved in the determination of lifespan.
Ageing can have profound effects on the post-mitotic organ of behaviour, the brain. As yet the precise causes of these deleterious effects are unknown. However, clear insights into the putative mechanisms and consequences of ageing in the CNS have been achieved through the use of invertebrate models. It is now clear that ageing alters the endogenous properties of neurones, their morphology, the efficacy of the connections that the neurones make with their targets and may even lead to neurone loss.
Historically, in the 1950s, the chemist Linus Pauling established a relationship between decreased longevity and obesity. At this time, with the advent of studies involving the mechanisms that modulate appetite control, some researchers observed that the hypothalamus is the "appetite centre" and that peripheral tissues have important roles in the modulation of gut inflammatory processes and levels of hormones that control food intake.
Academic Psychiatry: The Journal of the American Association of Directors of Psychiatric Residency Training and the Association for Academic Psychiatry
OBJECTIVE: This article presents major concepts and research findings from the field of psychosomatic medicine that the authors believe should be taught to all medical students. METHOD: The authors asked senior scholars involved in psychosomatic medicine to summarize key findings in their respective fields.
Genetic studies implicating the region of human chromosome 18p11.2 in susceptibility to bipolar disorder and schizophrenia have observed parent-of-origin effects that may be explained by genomic imprinting. We have identified a transcriptional variant of the GNAL gene in this region, employing an alternative first exon that is 5' to the originally identified start site. This alternative GNAL transcript encodes a longer functional variant of the stimulatory G-protein alpha subunit, Golf.
A recent report suggests that the down-regulation of reelin and glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD(67)) mRNAs represents 2 of the more consistent findings thus far described in post-mortem material from schizophrenia (SZ) patients [reviewed in. Neurochemical markers for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder amd major depression in postmortem brains. Biol Psychiatry 57, 252-260]. To study mechanisms responsible for this down-regulation, we have analyzed the promoter of the human reelin gene.
This mini-review describes recent discoveries demonstrating that experience can drive the production of epigenetic marks in the adult nervous system and that the experience-dependent regulation of epigenetic molecular mechanisms in the mature central nervous system participates in the control of gene transcription underlying the formation of long-term memories. In the mammalian experimental systems investigated thus far, epigenetic mechanisms have been linked to associative fear conditioning, extinction of learned fear, and hippocampus-dependent spatial memory formation.
Nitric oxide (NO) mediates cellular signaling pathways that regulate a plethora of physiological processes. One of the signaling mechanisms mediated by NO is through S-nitrosylation of cysteine residues in target proteins, which is now regarded as an important redox-based physiological action. Deregulation of the protein S-nitrosylation upon nitrosative stress, however, has also been linked to various human diseases, such as neurodegenerative disorders.
Because living systems depend on their environment, the evolution of environmental adaptability is inseparable from the evolution of life itself (Pross 2003). In animals and humans, environmental adaptability extends further to adaptive behavior. It has recently emerged that individual adaptability depends on the interaction of adaptation mechanisms at diverse functional levels. This interaction enables the integration of genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors for coordinated regulation of adaptations.