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Wireless charging system can power up internal body implants

A new system that that wirelessly charges internal implants and wearables could be about to make life easier for patients with conditions such as epilepsy or diabetes.   MagLense is a breakthrough product providing wireless power transfer to internal implants and wearables for more comfortable charging. The system, developed by Cambridge Consultants, provides flexible, efficient and safe wireless power transfer in a simple and user-friendly way.

See these first-of-a-kind views of living human nerve cells

New database could shed light on how people’s brains tick   The human brain is teeming with diversity. By plucking out delicate, live tissue during neurosurgery and then studying the resident cells, researchers have revealed a partial cast of neural characters that give rise to our thoughts, dreams and memories.   So far, researchers with the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle have described the intricate shapes and electrical properties of about 100 nerve cells, or neurons, taken from the brains of 36 patients as they underwent surgery for conditions such as brain tumors or epilepsy. To reach the right spot, surgeons had to remove a small hunk of brain tissue, which is usually discarded as medical waste. In this case, the brain tissue was promptly packed up and sent — ...

Scientists developing a pharmaceutical that stops convulsions

Scientists from RUDN University took an active part in the development of a chemical compound to stop convulsions during epileptic seizures. The results of the study were published in Chirality.   Epilepsy is a chronic neuralgic disease that causes convulsive seizures in humans and other animals. The pathogenesis of this disease is paroxysmal discharges in the nerve cells of the brain that cause convulsions. Anticonvulsants help to stop the epileptic fit. The drug itself is a powder that is dissolved in water and injected into a person experiencing such a seizure.

Star-shaped brain cells orchestrate neural connections

Brains are made of more than a tangled net of neurons. Star-like cells called astrocytes diligently fill in the gaps between neural nets, each wrapping itself around thousands of neuronal connections called synapses. This arrangement gives each individual astrocyte an intricate, sponge-like structure.   New research from Duke University finds that astrocytes are much more than neurons’ entourage. Their unique architecture is also extremely important for regulating the development and function of synapses in the brain.   When they don’t work right, astrocyte dysfunction may underlie neuronal problems observed in devastating diseases like autism, schizophrenia and epilepsy.

Angelman Patients Frequently Have Gastrointestinal Problems, Study Finds

Patients with Angelman syndrome (AS) often have gastrointestinal (GI) issues such as constipation, reflux and abnormal food-related behaviors, according to new research.   The study, “Prevalence of gastrointestinal symptoms in Angelman syndrome,” appeared in the American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A. Its senior author is Dr. Ronald L. Thibert, director of the Angelman Syndrome Clinic at Boston’s MassGeneral Hospital for Children.   AS presents multiple genetic subtypes, which are correlated with diverse clinical features. The most frequent subtype, affecting 68 to 70 percent of cases, is a deletion of a maternal chromosomal region, which is associated with a more severe phenotype.

Marijuana compound curbs seizures by pushing ‘brakes’ in brain

A compound derived from marijuana may treat a severe form of epilepsy by dampening brain activity, a new study suggests1.   In July, another team reported that in a clinical trial of 120 children with this form of epilepsy, called Dravet syndrome, the compound decreased the frequency of seizures. Dravet syndrome is often accompanied by autism.   The new study clarifies how this compound, cannabidiol, works to ease the seizures: It acts by inhibiting the activity of neurons, and it does so through a receptor called GPR55. In mice, the drug also improves social behavior.

New amino acid may lead to progress on major maladies

It’s open to different types, but it’s ultimately seeking an exclusive relationship. It knows how to establish a strong bond, but when it does, it tends to develop an unhealthy attachment that can keep a partner from reaching its full potential.   It’s an amino acid, and chemists at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln designed it that way to help smother drivers of diseases like Parkinson’s and cancer.   David Berkowitz and colleagues have synthesized a new class of amino acid that could inactivate vitamin B6-fueled enzymes – often called PLP enzymes – known for contributing to a range of health issues.

Spacing out after staying up late? Here’s why

UCLA-led study blames mental lapses on sleep-deprived brain cells   Ever sleep poorly and then walk out of the house without your keys? Or space out while driving to work and nearly hit a stalled car?   A new study led by UCLA’s Dr. Itzhak Fried is the first to reveal how sleep deprivation disrupts brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other. Fried and his colleagues believe that disruption leads to temporary mental lapses that affect memory and visual perception. Their findings are published online today by Nature Medicine.

CBD oil reduced toddler’s seizures. Still, state threatened to take away child, mother says

The parents of a 20-month-old girl say Indiana child welfare authorities threatened to take the child away from them because they chose to treat her epilepsy with a legal cannabis extract.   Lelah Jerger, the child’s mother, said personnel at Riley Hospital for Children reported her to Indiana’s Child Protective Services after she and her husband decided to use cannabidiol oil, or CBD, to treat their daughter Jaelah, rather than use the medication prescribed by a Riley doctor.

Wristband devices detect dangerous seizures in patients with epilepsy

New research published in Epilepsia, a journal of the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE), indicates that wristband devices may improve the detection and characterization of seizures in patients with epilepsy. New devices are needed for monitoring epileptic seizures, especially those that can lead to sudden death. While rare, “sudden unexpected death in epilepsy” (SUDEP) is the most common cause of death in epilepsy, and it often occurs at night. The gold standard for monitoring seizures — video-electroencephalography — is available in epilepsy monitoring units but is an impractical procedure for daily life use. Therefore, clinicians often rely on patients and caregivers to report seizure counts, which are often inaccurate.

In the grip of a drugs crisis – Including Epilepsy Medications

Thousands of people are addicted to a range of drugs originally licensed to treat epilepsy and nerve pain, a Devon doctor warns. Drugs such as gabapentin and pregablin are being prescribed for conditions ranging from anxiety to all sorts of chronic pain, Richard Byng, professor in primary care research at Plymouth University and a General Practitioner (GP) in the city, said.   He is calling for pharmacists, doctors and patients’ groups to work together to reduce the number of prescriptions issued.

New study hopes to shed light on mechanism behind epileptic and non-epileptic seizures

Seizures are a common result of traumatic brain injury, especially in military veterans. A new study funded by the DOD, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, and conducted in Providence RI and Birmingham AL (at the Veterans Affairs Medical Centers in Providence, RI and Birmingham, AL, Rhode Island Hospital, Brown University and the University of Alabama at Birmingham) hopes to shed new light on the mechanism behind seizures associated with post-traumatic epilepsy and psychogenic nonepileptic seizures.   The $3.6 million award, W81XWH-17-1-0619 will examine whether a form of cognitive behavior therapy, a short-term, goal-oriented psychotherapy approach to problem-solving, could be effective in reducing the frequency and/or severity of seizures in those with TBI. Cognitive...

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