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News and Announcements

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Topic-specific News

Items specific to any of the topics in the What We Know section of this site are displayed in the left sidebar of those pages. The same is true for our ScienceServ and Special Partnerships pages.

News and announcements related to environmental impacts on human health, collected from a multitude of sources, especially Environmental Health News. For additional items or to subscribe to this feed, visit healthandenvironment.org/CHE.xml.

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News stories linked to Healthy Aging

New report: Preventing Cognitive Decline and Dementia: A Way Forward.

June 22, 2017

The National Institute on Aging (NIA) initiated this study with the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to take stock of the current state of knowledge on interventions for preventing cognitive decline and dementia, to help shape the messages NIA conveys to the broader public about these conditions, and to inform future actions and research in this area.

Extra-virgin olive oil preserves memory, protects brain against Alzheimer's.

June 21, 2017

In a new study, researchers show that consumption of extra-virgin olive oil protects memory and learning ability and reduces the formation of amyloid-beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain—classic markers of Alzheimer's disease. ScienceDaily.

Western diet increases Alzheimer's pathology in genetically predisposed mice.

June 12, 2017

The authors found that APOE4-carrying mice fed a Western-like diet high in saturated fat and sugars for 12 weeks had increased deposits of β-amyloid protein as well a greater number of glial cells, characteristic of Alzheimer's disease (AD). These changes were not observed in mice carrying APOE3, which could mean that carriers of APOE4 are more susceptible to the effects of obesity on AD. ScienceDaily.
[See the study: Obesity accelerates Alzheimer-related pathology in APOE4 but not APOE3 mice]

Does consuming low-fat dairy increase the risk of Parkinson's disease?

June 11, 2017

Consuming at least three servings of low-fat dairy a day is associated with a greater risk of developing Parkinson's disease compared to consuming less than one serving a day, according to a large study. ScienceDaily.
[See the study: Intake of dairy foods and risk of Parkinson disease]

Dementia rates might be declining, new study finds.

May 29, 2017

More years of education was associated with a lower risk for dementia, and average years of education increased significantly from 2000 to 2017. And while obesity, a lack of exercise and poor diet can all raise the risk of Alzheimer's, rates went down as more people got heavier, developed high blood pressure and diabetes, Langa's team found. NBC News.
[See the study: A comparison of the prevalence of dementia in the United States in 2000 and 2012]

Healthy brain aging linked to omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in the blood.

May 22, 2017

Study results suggest that different patterns of polyunsaturated fats promote specific aspects of cognition by strengthening the underlying neural circuits that are vulnerable to disease and age-related decline. ScienceDaily.
[See the studies: Determinants of fluid intelligence in healthy aging: Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid status and frontoparietal cortex structure and Predictors of memory in healthy aging: polyunsaturated fatty acid balance and fornix white matter integrity]

Can omega-3 help prevent Alzheimer's disease? Brain SPECT imaging shows possible link.

May 22, 2017

Researchers have found that for patients with high omega-3 levels, blood flow in specific areas of the brain is increased. ScienceDaily.
[See the study: Quantitative erythrocyte omega-3 EPA plus DHA levels are related to higher regional cerebral blood flow on brain SPECT]

New report: Nutrition Across the Lifespan for Healthy Aging: Proceedings of a Workshop.

May 19, 2017

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Food Forum convened a workshop with five objectives: 1) to examine trends and patterns in aging and factors related to healthy aging in the United States with a focus on nutrition; 2) to examine how nutrition can sustain and promote healthy aging, not only in late adulthood, but beginning in pregnancy and early childhood and extending throughout the lifespan; 3) to highlight the role of nutrition in the aging process at various stages in life; to discuss changes in organ systems over the lifespan, including the skeletal, muscular, and cardiovascular systems, and changes that occur with age related to cognitive, brain, and mental health; 4) diet-related sensory preferences, oral health, and the microbiome; and 5) to explore opportunities to move forward in promoting healthy aging in the United States.

Sugar- and artificially sweetened beverages and the risks of incident stroke and dementia: a prospective cohort study.

May 14, 2017

Higher recent and higher cumulative intake of artificially sweetened soft drinks were associated with an increased risk of ischemic stroke, all-cause dementia, and Alzheimer's disease dementia. Sugar-sweetened beverages were not associated with stroke or dementia. Stroke.

Job opening: Albany, New York.

May 13, 2017

Clean and Healthy New York (CHNY) seeks an articulate, enthusiastic, detail-oriented Development and Communications Coordinator to join their team, promote positive public image among CHNY's various audiences and advance their fundraising capacity. Applications will be accepted until May 31, 2017.

Yogurt consumption in older Irish adults linked with better bone health.

May 10, 2017

The largest observational study to date of dairy intakes and bone and frailty measurements in older adults has found that increased yogurt consumption was associated with a higher hip bone density and a significantly reduced risk of osteoporosis in older women and men on the island of Ireland, after taking into account traditional risk factors. ScienceDaily.
[See the study: Greater yogurt consumption is associated with increased bone mineral density and physical function in older adults]

Association between using medications with anticholinergic properties and short-term cognitive decline among older men: a retrospective cohort study in Taiwan.

May 10, 2017

Exposure to anticholinergic drugs significantly increased the risk for short-term cognitive decline among older men, and the adverse effects remained similar when antipsychotics were excluded for analysis. Geriatrics & Gerontology International.

Bangladesh coal plant could cause 6,000 early deaths.

May 5, 2017

A giant coal-fired power plant approved by Bangladesh could drastically worsen air pollution for millions and cause the early deaths of 6,000 people over its lifetime, Greenpeace said Friday. Agence France-Presse.

The chemical disruption of human metabolism.

May 3, 2017

Chemical disruption of human metabolism has become an etiological determinant of much illness throughout the lifecycle, from neurodevelopmental abnormalities in-utero to dementia in the elderly. Toxicology Mechanisms and Methods.

Chemical linked to Entek air pollution also linked to employees' health problems.

May 1, 2017

Newly released records show regulators have repeatedly documented health problems among Entek employees who worked around the chemical solvent, trichloroethylene. The harms included reports of dementia, neurological problems, rashes, dizziness and trouble driving home from work. OregonLive.

One doctor's mission to personalize Alzheimer prevention.

April 30, 2017

"We're figuring out how all these genes and factors interact together to influence the chances of getting Alzheimer's. Then we can more accurately determine which interventions might work in which patients." Medscape.

Scientists call for protection from ill-health effects of cell phones, Wi-Fi.

April 28, 2017

Based on their peer-reviewed, published research, the scientists said they have serious concerns regarding the ubiquitous and increasing exposure to EMF generated by electric and wireless devices. The Guardian, United Kingdom.

Call for comments: OAR Regulatory Reform.

April 19, 2017

The US Environmental Protection Agency Office of Air and Radiation (OAR), will host a public teleconference to obtain additional stakeholder feedback on air and radiation regulatory actions on Monday, April 24, 2017. Written public comments can also be submitted through May 15, 2017.

From bullets to poison: tales of toxic lead and what makes it so lethal.

April 13, 2017

The metal's curious chemistry and propensity to alter enzymes have disfigured royals, killed Romans and gained it notoriety for murders. The Guardian.

The effects of 50 Hz magnetic field exposure on DNA damage and cellular functions in various neurogenic cells.

April 12, 2017

Our data suggest that exposure to a 50 Hz MF at 2.0 mT did not elicit DNA damage effects or abnormal cellular functions in the neurogenic cells studied. Journal of Radiation Research.

Parkinson's disease and occupational exposures: a systematic literature review and meta-analyses.

April 12, 2017

Using an elaborated quality protocol, there is now strong evidence that exposure to any pesticide involves a ≥50% increased risk for developing Parkinson's disease. Studies on exposure to metals or electromagnetic fields did not show increased risk. Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health.

Effects of avocado (Persea americana) on metabolic syndrome: a comprehensive systematic review.

April 12, 2017

In this review, we aimed to find out avocado's pharmacological effects on different components of MetS. Moreover, this review report is performed on the MetS effects of peel, seed, flesh, and leaves of avocado. Phytotherapy Research.

Why green spaces are good for grey matter.

April 10, 2017

"We found that older participants experienced beneficial effects of green space whilst walking between busy built urban environments and urban green space environments." ScienceDaily.
[See the study: Older people's experiences of mobility and mood in an urban environment: a mixed methods approach using electroencephalography (EEG) and interviews]

CardioBrief: pendulum swings further away from vitamin D supplements.

April 10, 2017

A new randomized controlled trial offers no support for the use of increasingly popular vitamin D supplements to prevent cardiovascular disease or reduce mortality. Medpage Today.
[See the study: Effect of monthly high-dose vitamin D supplementation on cardiovascular disease in the Vitamin D Assessment Study: a randomized clinical trial]

Programming the future: epigenetics in the context of DOHaD.

April 8, 2017

According to the developmental origins of health and disease (DOHaD) hypothesis, environmental exposures during pre- and postnatal development can affect health years or even decades later. A potential bridge between these exposures and outcomes involves changes in, or reprogramming of, the epigenome. Environmental Health Perspectives.
[See the study: Small-magnitude effect sizes in epigenetic end points are important in children's environmental health studies: the Children's Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Center's Epigenetics Working Group]

Researchers raise concerns over health risks of popular herbicide.

April 3, 2017

Tanner is careful to call the Parkinson’s-paraquat relationship a correlation, not causation. But it’s one of many studies that suggests that correlation. Fresno Valley Public Radio, California.

Hepatitis B and C may be linked to increased risk of Parkinson’s disease.

March 31, 2017

"It's possible that the hepatitis virus itself or perhaps the treatment for the infection could play a role in triggering Parkinson's disease or it's possible that people who are susceptible to hepatitis infections are also more susceptible to Parkinson's disease." Newswise.
[See the study: Viral hepatitis and Parkinson disease: A national record-linkage study]

Vitamin D and cancer: still no clear answers.

March 31, 2017

Four years of supplemental vitamin D and calcium did not reduce the risk of cancer in healthy postmenopausal women, a randomized, placebo-controlled trial showed. Medpage Today.
[See the study: Effect of vitamin D and calcium supplementation on cancer incidence in older women: a randomized clinical trial]

Effect of 1.8 GHz radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation on novel object associative recognition memory in mice.

March 31, 2017

These results demonstrate that exposure to 1.8 GHz RF-EMR for 30 min can significantly increase recognition memory in mice, and can change dendritic-spine morphology and neuronal excitability in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. Scientific Reports.

Walk, stretch or dance? Dancing may be best for the brain.

March 29, 2017

A new study that compared the neurological effects of country dancing with those of walking and other activities suggests that there may be something unique about learning a social dance. New York Times.
[See the study: White matter integrity declined over 6-months, but dance intervention improved integrity of the fornix of older adults]