Changing cell structure may fight obesity
Researchers at University of Queen Mary London found that reducing the size of cilia, hair-like structures, on stem cells prevents them from transforming into fat. This is the first study to discover that altering the length of cilia can influence the production of fat cells by stem cells.
The tiny hairs on cells, known as primary cilia, helped prevent the production of fat cells from stem cells once their length was slightly regulated. The process of turning calories into fat includes adipogenesis, the differentiation of stem cells into fat cells. The researchers discovered that the length of the cilia is associated with the movement of proteins onto the cilia during adipogenesis. Once the researchers restricted the elongation of the cilia in stem cells from a human bone marrow, the production of new fat cells ceased.
Researchers noted that the lengths of cilia are affected by inflammation, pharmaceuticals, and mechanical forces. In the future, researchers are hoping to begin a new type of treatment of targeted cilia-therapy for conditions such as obesity.
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Sourced from: sciencedaily.com, Changing stem cell structure may help fight obesity
Published On: Feb 17th 2015
Meditation can improve quality of sleep
There’s another endrosement for the benefits of mindful meditation. A new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine says it can also improve quality of sleep, even more than the sleep hygiene education (SHE) program, a public program created to improve sleeping habits and bedtime routine.
The study involved a small clinical trial of 49 people with an average age of 66. Twenty-four people joined low-cost community MBI called mindful awareness practices, while 25 participated in SHE programs.
Participants used a questionnaire known as the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) to assess their sleeping habits. Each group averaged a 10.2 PSQI score at the beginning of the study. The findings showed that the group participating in mindful awareness practices scored higher PSQI scores on average than the group participating in the SHE program. The scores were 9.1 compared to 7.4, respectively. The mindful practices group also reported higher improvements for insomnia and depression symptoms as well as fatigue. Both groups over time reported improvements in anxiety and stress.
The study authors note, however, more research needs to be done to test a wider range of social groups as 67 percent of the participants for this study were women with higher education levels.
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Sourced from: medicalnewstoday.com, Sleep quality could be improved with mindfulness meditation
Published On: Feb 17th 2015