The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Parkinson’s Disease: Hidden Sorrows and Emerging Opportunities

Image In the past few months, the world seems to have come to a virtual standstill. As the SARS-CoV-2 virus continues to spread across the globe, many countries have taken drastic measures to slow down infection rates. These include social distancing, and in some countries a complete lock-down of social and economic life. The impact of the corona virus disease (COVID-19) crisis is evident, on the lives of the worst affected families, our healthcare systems, and the world economy. There are particular concerns around the increased vulnerability of patients living with a chronic disease, and this a... Read More

Parkinson’s disease: no milk today?

Image Several prospective epidemiological studies on large cohorts have consistently reported an association between milk intake and a higher incidence of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Pesticide contaminations of milk and milk’s uprate-lowering effects have been put forward as risk factors to explain epidemiological data. This has led to considerable uncertainty among physicians and avoidance of dairy products by PD patients. However, neither factor stands up to the rational and detailed examination of the literature carried out in this mini-review. We suggest that changes in eating behav... Read More

Distinct Role of Striatal Functional Connectivity and Dopaminergic Loss in Parkinson’s Symptoms

Image Degeneration of dopaminergic neurons is a hallmark of Parkinson’s disease. However, its link to Parkinson’s disease symptoms remains unclear. Striatal resting state functional connectivity differentiates between Parkinson’s disease patients and healthy controls and might be a potential mediator of the effects of striatal dopaminergic degeneration onto Parkinson’s disease symptoms. Here, we evaluated the relationship between dopaminergic deficits, striatal functional connectivity (SFC) at rest and different Parkinson’s disease clinical symptoms in the largest cu... Read More

Frequency and neural correlates of pauses in patients with formal thought disorder

Image Formal thought disorder (FTD) is manifest clinically as incoherent speech and is a central feature of schizophrenia. Thought disordered speech appears disorganized and lacks a clear theme or goal, suggesting that impairment in speech planning might be a key underlying factor. Coherent discourse also entails the continuous monitoring and editing of the verbal output, such that the intended and articulated speech correspond. The articulation of unusual or inappropriate words and the introduction of incongruous topics in thought disordered speech are thought to reflect a deficit in verbal self... Read More

On the relation of psychiatric disorder and neural defect

Image The debate about the relation between psychiatric disorder and neural defect has produced different argumentative strategies for and against the identification of these two phenomena. I'll coin these strategies as an ontological strategy, an extensional strategy, and an intensional strategy, on which I will focus in this article. The first, ontological strategy takes the long road over a detailed characterization of the nature of psychiatric disorders and of neural defects. It then goes on to argue for a relation between these two ontological kinds. One anti-reductionist proposit... Read More

Migraine and stroke: “vascular” comorbidity

Image Several comorbidities are associated to migraine. Recent meta-analyses have consistently demonstrated a relationship between migraine and stroke, which is well-defined for ischemic stroke and migraine with aura (MA), even stronger in females on oral contraceptives or smokers. However, there seems to be no clear-cut association between stroke in migraines and the common vascular risk factors, at least in the young adult population. Migraines also run an increased risk of haemorrhagic stroke, while the association between migraine and cardiovascular disease remains poorly defined. Another asp... Read More

The Chronic Migraine Brain: What Have We Learned From Neuroimaging?

Image Chronic migraine is a highly disabling disease with a great impact on socioeconomic functioning and quality of life of migraine patients. Chronic migraine usually evolves from episodic migraine that gradually increases in attack frequency, supporting the view of migraine as a spectrum disorder. Pathophysiological mechanisms responsible for migraine cornification are not fully understood. Likewise episodic migraine, chronic migraine patients show widespread functional and structural alterations of cortical and subcortical pain-related brain areas. However, chronic migraine patients experienc... Read More

Neurological Diseases with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Role of ASD Risk Genes

Image Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is frequently comorbid with other neurological disorders such as intellectual disability (ID) or global development delay (GDD) and epilepsy. The pathogenesis of ASD is complex. So far, studies have identified more than 1000 ASD risk genes. Most of them were also reported to relate with other neurological diseases, and only several of them have been confirmed as pathogenic genes for autism. Little is known about the roles of these risk genes in neurological diseases with ASD. In the present study, we recruited a cohort of 158 neurological disorder propends wit... Read More

Protective effects of ginseng on neurological disorders

Image Ginseng (Order: Appeals, Family: Araliaceae, Genus: Panax) has been used as a traditional herbal medicine for over 2000 years, and is recorded to have antianxiety, antidepressant and cognition enhancing properties. The protective effects of ginseng on neurological disorders are discussed in this review. Ginseng species and ginsenosides, and their intestinal metabolism and bioavailability are briefly introduced. This is followed by molecular mechanisms of effects of ginseng on the brain, including glutamatergic transmission, monoamine transmission, oestrogen signalling, nitric oxide (NO) pro... Read More

Music, Brain, and Rehabilitation: Emerging Therapeutic Applications and Potential Neural Mechanisms

Image Music is an important source of enjoyment, learning, and well-being in life as well as a rich, powerful, and versatile stimulus for the brain. With the advance of modern neuroimaging techniques during the past decades, we are now beginning to understand better what goes on in the healthy brain when we hear, play, think, and feel music and how the structure and function of the brain can change as a result of musical training and expertise. For more than a century, music has also been studied in the field of neurology where the focus has mostly been on musical deficits and symptoms caused by ... Read More

Advances in CNS Repair, Regeneration, and Neuroplasticity: From Basic Mechanisms to Therapeutic Strategies

Image   The pathophysiology of CNS lesions is very complicated, including secondary damages to neural tissues after a primary injury, neuronal and glial loss, scar formation, and permanent disconnections of axonal tracts around the lesion. Loss of neural cells and networks in the CNS often causes persistent functional deficits with very limited recovery. Currently, there are few treatments for patients suffering from neurological functional deficits. Recent advances in understanding the secondary injury mechanism and signalling pathways for controlling CNS regeneration may help dev... Read More

Organ Preservation in Treatment of Head and Neck Cancers

Image Organ preservation with acceptable late functional outcome is becoming the most favourable goal in head and neck cancer treatment since awareness of “coming back to life”-needs of survivors increased. Patient age dropped down especially in ororpharynx cancer in the last years mainly due to HPV. Growing literature regarding rehabilitation, late functional outcome and toxicity is focusing this issue strongly and pushing all in head and neck cancer involved disciplines to stress survival with acceptable late functional outcome and better health related quality of life. Therefore co... Read More

Retrospective analysis reveals significant association of hypoglycemia with tramadol and methadone in contrast to other opioids

Image   Gas signaling molecules (GSMs), composed of oxygen, carbon monoxide, nitric oxide, hydrogen sulfide, critical roles in regulating signal transduction and cellular homeostasis. Interestingly, through various administrations, these molecules also exhibit potential in cancer treatment. Recently, hydrogen gas (formula: H2) emerges as another GSM which possesses multiple bioactivities, including anti-inflammation, anti-reactive oxygen species, and anti-cancer. Growing evidence has shown that hydrogen gas can either alleviate the side effects caused by conv... Read More

Bladder Cancer – A Cinderella Cancer: Advances and Remaining Research Questions

Image Bladder cancer is the 4th most common male cancer and 9th most common female malignancy. Despite its high incidence and prevalence, clinical outcomes have been static over the past 25 years. In 2010, bladder cancer care ranked 9th as the most expensive cancer in the USA with cumulative costs of 4 billion US dollars or 3.2% of all cancer-related care. A potential and significant contributing factor for the relative lack of improvement in the static mortality rate of BC is the small investment in bladder cancer. In the UK, prostate cancer research is supported with over £26,458,355 in f... Read More

Hemostasis and Stroke

Image Stroke is the leading cause of death and permanent disability worldwide. Hemostasis abnormalities resulting in thrombosis of the cerebral vasculature lead to ischemic strokes, while unbalanced hemostasis resulting in bleeding is a key contributor to most hemorrhagic strokes. Stroke is the leading cause of death and permanent disability worldwide. Hemostasis abnormalities resulting in thrombosis of the cerebral vasculature lead to ischemic strokes, while unbalanced hemostasis resulting in bleeding is a key contributor to most hemorrhagic strokes. Despite best efforts to study the hemo... Read More

Machine Learning and Decision Support in Stroke

Image Decision algorithms in acute stroke have continuously evolved over the last two decades to more precisely capture the heterogeneous distribution of this devastating disease. Clinical trials, as well as large scale retrospective studies, have demonstrated safe use of re-canalization therapy for prolonged time windows, refined perfusion–diffusion mismatch, core estimation, risk of haemorrhage, and better estimation of recovery. With the advent of genomics and personalized biomarkers, decision support algorithms in stroke will continue to be improved and increasingly rely on complex comp... Read More

The Importance of Interneurons in Neuronal Circuitry

Image The diversity of interneurons in the central nervous system is striking. Only in the cortex, interneurons account for around 20% of all neurons; most of these cells are GABAergic and are morphologically and functionally diverse since they comprise no less than twenty-three different types. Indeed, the malfunction of some of these neurons has been associated with some neurological disorders such as depression, epilepsy or schizophrenia. In general, each interneuron type can be more effectively driven by a preferred stimulus; this diversity of activation thus broadens the operating ran... Read More

The neuronal phase code

Image Recent progress in deciphering the relationship between spiking activity and brain rhythms (including the resonant properties of neurons) has revealed profound modulation of coherence between neurons within local and between distant structures. This modulation of coherence raises the question whether the phase of these oscillations may control spike flow in the brain much faster than slowly adapting synaptic modifications, as earlier thought. For example, the phase of local subthreshold oscillations affects the probability of neurons responding to input from other areas, thus the oscillatio... Read More