Accurate Way to Predict the Age When Women Will Hit the Menopause Developed
Iran - Researchers have developed a way of accurately predicting when women will hit the menopause using a simple blood test. The average difference between the predicted age and the actual age that the women in their study reached the menopause was only a third of a year, and the maximum margin of error was between three and four years.

The project was presented at a conference in Rome on fertility and could be used outside laboratories, but if it proves effective on a wider panel. This would allow women to discover early on in their reproductive life what their expected age at menopause will be, so that they can plan when to start a family through the measurement of the rate of hormone anti-Mullerian (AMH) in the blood. In the trial, researchers at the University of Medical Sciences Shahid Beheshti have a blood test to a group of 266 women aged 20-49 years every three years to measure their hormone AMH.

Scientists have therefore established a statistical model to identify AMH levels at different ages that would predict if women were likely to have an early menopause (before the age of 45). She found that, for instance, AMH levels of 4.1 ng/ml or less predicted early menopause in 20-year-olds, AMH levels of 3.3 ng/ml predicted it in 25-year-olds, and AMH levels of 2.4 ng/ml predicted it in 30-year-olds.

In contrast, AMH levels of at least 4.5 ng/ml at the age of 20, 3.8 ngl/ml at 25 and 2.9 ng/ml at 30 all predicted an age at menopause of over 50 years old. The researchers found that the average age at menopause for the women in their study was approximately 52.

They concluded: "Our findings indicate that AMH is capable of specifying a woman's reproductive status more realistically than chronological age per se. Considering that this is a small study that has looked at women over a period of time, larger studies starting with women in their twenties and following them for several years are needed to validate the accuracy of serum AMH concentration for the prediction of menopause in young women."

Story Source:
Provided by European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology



Androgen Receptor May Explain Male Dominance in Liver Cancer

Hepatitis B and liver cancer: why men are more exposed?
Sex hormones play a role in liver cancer associated with hepatitis B, which could finally explain why men infected with the virus are much more likely than women to say the cancer according to a new study published in the journal "Translational Medicine". These findings open new perspectives for treatment of skin cancer including drugs targeting the androgen receptor tumors.

The liver cancer, which affects the largest organ in the body, is the fifth most common cancer and the third in terms of mortality worldwide. Infections due to hepatitis B virus, endemic in many Asian countries including China, are responsible for about half the cases of liver cancer worldwide.

The virus interacts with the androgen receptor:
In this study, researchers have discovered why men with hepatitis B are more likely to develop liver cancer than women. The answer lies in the genome of the virus: it contains a particular sequence of DNA that specifically interacts with the receptor to male sex hormones, androgens. In liver cells, a cascade of reactions harmful to the liver tissue is triggered when the receptor binds to this sequence.

Researchers have discovered that targeting the androgen receptor, rather than hormones themselves, they could inhibit tumor growth in mice significantly. They also produced, for their experiments, the first genetically modified mouse with hepatitis B can develop

liver tumors following exposure to low doses of carcinogen. They then showed the androgen receptor could be removed with a chemical causing the arrest of tumor growth. The treatment had no influence on circulating levels of androgens in the body and showed no apparent toxicity in mice.

These results suggest that drugs capable of targeting the androgen receptor rather that these hormones could be a promising therapy against liver cancer.

Androgen Receptor Promotes Hepatitis B Virus-Induced Through Modulation hepatocarcinogenesis of Hepatitis B Virus RNA Transcript . Ming-Heng Wu, Wen-Lung Ma, Cheng-Lung Hsu, Yuh-Ling Chen, Jing-Hsiung James Or, Charlotte Kathryn Ryan, Yao-Ching Hung, Shuyuan Yeh, Chang Chawnshang. Translational Medicine

Story Source:
The above story is from materials provided by University of Rochester Medical Center.



Replacing white rice with brown rice or other whole grains may reduce diabetes risk
World - In a new study, researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) have found that eating five or more servings of white rice per week was associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. In contrast, eating two or more servings of brown rice per week was associated with a lower risk of the disease.

Much of the world's population consumes rice. These results reflect the fact that white rice is refined and then processed. Therefore, people must prefer the brown rice. Other whole grains, like wheat, promise even greater benefits. Regular consumption reduces the risk of diabetes by 36%.

This study points out how important it is for health to eat whole grains. This must obviously be done in conjunction with a healthy lifestyle, both on the eating habits of physical activity.

Source: Harvard School of Public Health

Journal Reference:
Qi Sun; Donna Spiegelman; Rob M. van Dam; Michelle D. Holmes; Vasanti S. Malik; Walter C. Willett; Frank B. Hu. White Rice, Brown Rice, and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes in US Men and Women. Arch Intern Med, 2010; 170 (11): 961-969



Genetics: Creating a cell with synthetic DNA
United States - John Craig Venter, an American biologist shows for his research in genome sequencing, has managed his teams to create the first bacterium with a fully synthetic genome.

This bacterium has been made from the sequencing of the genome of the bacterium Mycoplasma mycoides. It's been 15 years since researchers at the J. Craig Venter Institute in Maryland, harnessed to the task. The cell contains more than one million base pairs, which is low compared to six billion contained in the human genome.

This is a great advance in the field of genetics, this research could lead to the design of artificial life forms that could help produce biofuels or pharmaceuticals. Important ethical issues arise, however, due to possible drifts around this technique.

Scanning electron micrographs of M. mycoides
More information can be found on the J. Craig Venter Institute web site at:

Journal Reference:
Daniel G. Gibson, John I. Glass, Carole Lartigue, Vladimir N. Noskov, Ray-Yuan Chuang, Mikkel A. Algire, Gwynedd A. Benders, Michael G. Montague, Li Ma, Monzia M. Moodie, Chuck Merryman, Sanjay Vashee, Radha Krishnakumar, Nacyra Assad-Garcia, Cynthia Andrews-Pfannkoch, Evgeniya A. Denisova, Lei Young, Zhi-Qing Qi, Thomas H. Segall-Shapiro, Christopher H. Calvey, Prashanth P. Parmar, Clyde A. Hutchison III, Hamilton O. Smith, and J. Craig Venter. Creation of a Bacterial Cell Controlled by a Chemically Synthesized Genome. Science, May 20, 2010 DOI: 10.1126 / science.1190719


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