Zapping Chronic Pain with Red Light

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Neuropathic pain can be caused by an excessive nerve response to non-harmful (innocuous) touch.¬† Dhandapani and colleagues combined a molecule that binds to the neurons and a light-activated phototoxic chemical to create a treatment that uses light (specifically near infrared light) to alleviate neuropathic pain in a mouse model. To develop this treatment, the authors … Read moreZapping Chronic Pain with Red Light

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Soluble Amyloid Precursor Protein Signals to Neural Stem Cells

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Amyloid precursor protein (APP) is best known as the protein that is cleaved to form the plaque-associated protein in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. The APP gene encodes multiple alternatively spliced mRNA forms. The form that encodes a protein of 695 amino acids (APP695) is expressed in neurons. The transcript that encodes a 770 amino … Read moreSoluble Amyloid Precursor Protein Signals to Neural Stem Cells

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GDF15: Heart Hormone, Appetite Suppressant, Marker of Neurodegenerative Disease

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Coordinating growth with heart health ensures that the heart can keep up with the demands placed on it by the body. A recent study (1) identified a molecule called growth differentiation factor 15 [GDF15, also known as macrophage inhibitory cytokine 1 (MIC1)] that was released from the heart that signals to the liver to inhibit … Read moreGDF15: Heart Hormone, Appetite Suppressant, Marker of Neurodegenerative Disease

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