The Med & Mic™ 02.24.22
Medical and Health News of the Day
From Dr. Maria ON Speaking, LLC
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Key ALS Discovery Could Lead to Therapies
ALS is a fatal disease where the neurons in the spinal cord and brain that control movement stop working and whither. Two separate research teams have independently and simultaneously identified a molecule that interacts with RNA in nerve cells. The altered RNA causes faulty production of a protein important to the chemical signals nerves use to communicate with each other. With much more work, the discovery could lead to therapies. More in STAT News.
Heat and mental health
A study in JAMA Psychiatry shows mental health visits to emergency departments in hospitals surge with heat waves. Researchers reviewed insurance records of 3.5 million ER visits from 2010 to 2019 and found a pattern of 7% more cases of worsened symptoms of mood and anxiety disorders, substance use disorders, schizophrenia, and suicide attempts. This information could help clinicians and mental health service providers prepare in times of extreme heat, and prompt people to check on their friends and neighbors. More from UPI.
Omicron BA.2 Not More Severe
Clinical data from South Africa, the UK, and Denmark show no difference in severity between BA.2 and BA.1 (the original Omicron). In these areas, the immunity from vaccination and infection is high. Even though BA.2 spreads more rapidly, it will not get its own Greek letter nomenclature. There also appears to be low risk of infection with BA.2 after having BA.1. More in MedPage Today.
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