The neurological effects of lead & PCB's compared with ADHD: What can be learned from the similarities and differences

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, is one of the most frequently diagnosed neurobehavioral problems in children and is thought to be largely hereditary. But only a small number of cases have been linked to specific genes, leading many researchers to explore the impact of environmental...

Evidence supports association between methylmercury exposure and adverse cardiovascular impacts

Traditionally, when one considers exposure to methylmercury, adverse impacts upon the brain and kidneys are foremost in any risk assessment. See, for example, http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/tf.asp?id=113&tid=24 . Given the state of the evidence, it would appear that this paradigm needs to be amended...

Parkinson's may be caused by the same bacterium that causes ulcers, new animal model studies suggest

The cause of Parkinson's Disease is unknown. To date, many experts have suggested that it may have a genetic origin; see http://www.webmd.com/parkinsons-disease/parkinsons-causes . Other experts point to toxins that may selectively destroy the dopaminergic neurons, thereby causing Parkinson's...

How do schools of fish maneuver together? Watch the trees, not the forest

Watching large schools of fish maneuver with the grace of a water ballet leads to an obvious question: How do so many animals spread over what is often many yards coordinate their activities with such precision? They keep an eye on their immediate neighbors. However, how many neighbors they watch is...

What drives developmental defects in children exposed to drugs and alcohol as fetuses? Loss of chromosomes in brain cells?

Prenatal exposure to amphetamines and alcohol produces abnormal numbers of chromosomes in fetal mouse brains. The findings suggest these abnormal counts may contribute to the developmental defects seen in children exposed to drugs and alcohol in utero. Researchers injected pregnant mice with alcohol...

Intestinal bacteria may trigger multiple sclerosis

Physicians have not identified the cause of multiple sclerosis. Theses include an individual's genetics, environment, and possibly a virus. In such an environment, all types of theories can be thrown up and become the basis for litigation, not unlike what happened with mercury preservatives in various...

CDC Advisory Committee recommends lead poisoning be deemed to start at 5 mcg per dL

Prior posts have noted a number of studies over recent years that have demonstrated the adverse impact of lead at levels below that traditionally considered as indicating "lead poisoning", 10 mcg/dL. Lead poisoning continues to be a serious health problem for young children, especially those...

Bird Flu May Increase Risk of Parkinson's

At least in mice, the "bird flu", known more specifically as H5N1, may make those who survive the disease more susceptible to Parkinson's Disease. Although flu is generally thought of as a disease of the body, H5N1 can move into the brain. How it gets there is subject to debate. Some researchers...

Bee Explorers Have a Slightly Different Genetic Makeup than the Rest of the Hive

Researchers have found that honey bees who consistently explore new environments for food have different genetic activity in their brains than their less-adventurous hive mates. In a demonstration how nature often uses the same tools in various settings, though sometimes to yield different mechanisms...