Monday, 02 May 2016
Connective tissue is the most abundant type of tissue in our body. The shape and form of the body, including its organs, muscles, bones, and cartilage, are determined by the properties of connective tissue. Skin, blood, blood vessels, adipose tissue (fat cells), tendons, ligaments, and teeth are various examples of connective tissue. Therefore, the term “connective tissue diseases” encompasses a wide range of ailments; some of them are inherited, while others develop as autoimmune diseases due to excessive inflammation. Examples of autoimmune connective tissue diseases are scleroderma, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, vasculitis (inflammation of blood vessels), mixed connective tissue diseases, etc.
Sunday, 17 April 2016
According to a recent study published in The Lancet medical journal, the number of people diagnosed with diabetes has increased four times in the past 35 years1. There were 108 million people diagnosed with diabetes in 1980 and 422 million in 2014. Based on this alarming statistical finding, the World Health Organization (WHO) selected diabetes as the theme for World Health Day 2016 in order to raise awareness and to prevent and effectively manage diabetes.
Monday, 04 April 2016
Athletes focus on increasing stamina, reducing muscle fatigue and injuries, and maximizing performance. While they recognize the role of macronutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, and other healthy foods, the importance of micronutrients is often neglected. Insufficiency of micronutrients frequently leads to easy fatigue, muscle or bone injury, and other ailments like arthritis. An intense exercise routine and increased metabolic turnover makes micronutrient supplementation essential for athletes.
Monday, 21 March 2016
Globally, resistance to treatment with antimicrobial drugs is becoming an increasingly serious public health problem. Antimicrobial resistance is a larger phenomenon than antibiotic resistance. In addition to drug resistant bacteria, the antimicrobial resistant species also include other drug resistant microbes such as fungi, parasites, and viruses. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 480,000 new cases of multi drug resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) were diagnosed in 2013. Other disease causing and highly virulent organisms that have already developed drug resistance are malarial parasites, the fungus Candida, methicillin-resistant-Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), and the bacteria causing gonorrhea. The drug resistant bacteria are estimated to cause 99,000 deaths in U.S. hospitals every year.
Sunday, 06 March 2016
After heart disease, cancer is the second leading cause of death worldwide. One in two men and one in three women will be diagnosed with some type of cancer in their lifetime. Despite novel initiatives, the American Cancer Society estimates that by 2020 the number of new cancers will increase to more than one million cases per year in men, and more than 900,000 cases per year in women. Melanoma, lung, breast, and prostate cancer are the most commonly diagnosed among the new cancers. Although cigarette smoking - the most common risk factor for cancer - still remains high, obesity and other metabolic disorders can contribute to and increase breast, colon, uterus, pancreas, and kidney cancers.
Friday, 19 February 2016
Cardiovascular diseases, including heart attacks and strokes, continue to be the leading causes of deaths resulting in more than 17 million deaths each year worldwide. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) manifests as atherosclerosis, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, arrhythmia, and heart failure and has many more symptoms affecting the heart and blood vessels. Additionally, other metabolic diseases such as obesity and diabetes further increase the risk of CVD.
Monday, 08 February 2016
Lyme disease (LD), also called Borreliosis or Lyme borreliosis, is a bacterial infection transmitted by ticks. Statistics confirm that LD has become the most common vector-borne illness in the USA and Europe, although its occurrence has been documented on all continents except Antarctica. LD is caused by the bacterium of genus Borrelia that is harbored in ticks. Borrelia can be found frequently in small and large mammals, and birds and reptiles on which many ticks feed and mate making them prone to become infected. The ticks that spread LD can sometimes co-transmit other tick-borne pathogens such as Ehrlichia sp., Babesia sp., and Bartonella sp.
Monday, 18 January 2016
Lyme disease (LD) is the most common vector-borne disease in the USA (approximately 30,000 cases annually) and in Europe (approximately 65,000-80,000 cases annually). However, current statistics reflect only reported cases, and the actual numbers may be even 5-10 times higher due to frequent misdiagnosis of the disease.Lyme disease manifests itself as an inflammatory disease that can affect many organs in the body. In its early stage (localized) it affects mainly the skin. In later stages (disseminated and chronic) the inflammation spreads to the joints, nervous system and, to a lesser extent, the heart, muscles or other organs.
Monday, 04 January 2016
Although a balanced diet is one of the best ways to obtain nourishment for everyone, the majority of children are not getting enough micronutrients from the food they eat. Too few fresh fruits and vegetables and consumption of highly processed food results in chronic deficiency of essential micronutrients in children impairing their growth and health and making them prone to diseases. Malnutrition in children is a problem not only in developing countries. In their quest for massive food production, the developed countries have indiscriminately used pesticides and chemical fertilizers and other poor farming practices which has led to severe depletion of nutrients in the soil. In addition, micronutrient deficiencies are widespread due to the global promotion of highly processed food. A study published in 2004 in the Journal of American College of Nutrition confirms a significant decline in the nutritive value of food produced in the last 50 years.
Tuesday, 15 December 2015
Sarcomas are cancers of connective tissue such as hard tissue (bones), soft tissue (muscles) and tendons. Although sarcomas are uncommon at any age, they are relatively frequent in children. Every year in the USA approximately 1500-1700 children and young people under the age of 20 are diagnosed with bone and soft tissue sarcomas. Sarcomas are one of the most life-threatening cancers in children, and survival ranges from 59%-68% depending on factors such as age, other risks (i.e., tumor location, gender, environment, genetics), prescription medications and other drugs, etc.
Friday, 13 November 2015
Sarcoma is a cancerous growth developing in the cells of the connective tissue. Primary cancers that develop in the soft connective tissues such as in the muscles, nerves, blood vessels, and fat cells, are called soft tissue sarcomas, versus osseous sarcomas, which develop in hard connective tissue such as in the bones and cartilage. Connective tissue is abundantly present everywhere in the body, and therefore soft tissue sarcomas can occur anywhere. However, the most common locations for soft tissue sarcomas are in the arms and legs, followed by the organs in the abdominal cavity. While it is a rare type of cancer and constitutes about 1% of all adult cancers, the American Cancer Society estimates that in 2015, approximately 12,000 adults will be newly diagnosed with soft tissue sarcoma, and 4,870 adults may die due to this disease.
Friday, 30 October 2015
Apoptosis, also referred to as “programmed cell death,” or “cell suicide,” originates from a combination of Greek words that can be loosely translated as “falling off.” Apoptosis is a physiological process essential for the development and function of the human body and other multicellular organisms. Millions of cells routinely die in the bone marrow and intestines every hour. It is estimated that approximately 50-70 billion cells die due to apoptosis every day in an average human adult.
Thursday, 15 October 2015
Cancer of the urinary bladder is the fourth most common cause of cancer in men. Most bladder cancer patients tend to be older men over the age of 60. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2015, approximately 74,000 new cases of bladder cancer will be diagnosed in the US.
Thursday, 01 October 2015
Kidneys are a part of the urinary system. A pair of fist-sized kidneys is located in the flanks on either side of the vertebral column. The main function of the kidneys is to form urine by removing water and waste products from the body. Urine is then stored in the urinary bladder to be later excreted.
Thursday, 17 September 2015
The human digestive system is approximately 16 feet long and it is estimated that the digestive system will process more than 25 tons of food over the course of our lifetime! The function of our digestive system is to convert the foods that we eat into bioenergy for the cells to use for maintenance, growth, and repair. Although we tend to think of the digestive system in terms of organs such as the stomach, intestines, liver and pancreas, these digestive organs are made up of different types of specialized cells.
Thursday, 10 September 2015
Skin cancer is the most common of all types of cancers. While melanoma is the most feared skin cancer, non-melanoma skin cancers are far more common. The American Cancer Society estimates 73,000 Americans will be diagnosed with melanoma in 2015; however, there will be 3.5 million new cases of non-melanoma cancers.