Briefly Speaking

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Briefly Speaking

Sunday, 10 March 2019 | Pioneer

Briefly Speaking

Sleep apnea and Alzheimer's marker

Researchers have found a link between sleep apnea and increased levels of a toxic brain protein commonly associated with Alzheimer’s disease. The findings suggests that people suffering from sleep apnea may have higher accumulations of an Alzheimer’s disease biomarker called tau in an area of the brain that helps with memory. Those who had apneas had on average 4.5 per cent higher levels of tau in the entorhinal cortex than those who did not have apneas, suggests the study presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 71st Annual Meeting in Philadelphia. Tau, a protein that forms into tangles, is found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease. “Our research results raise the possibility that sleep apnea affects tau accumulation. But it is also possible that higher levels of tau in other regions may predispose a person to sleep apnea,” said co-author Diego Z Carvalho from Minnesota’s Mayo Clinic.

Savour Your Conversations Too

While savouring a creamy slice of chocolate cake is as blissful as it gets, according to a recent study the concept goes beyond taste buds. We can also savour a meaningful conversation, and it works wonders. While the word “savour” is often used in the context of food, we can also savour important experiences, moments or even visually compelling events, such as an exceptionally vibrant sunset. So, too, can we savour meaningful conversations, says University of Arizona researcher, Maggie Pitts. Pitts, lead author of the study, examined the concept of savouring as it relates to human communication. In a paper published in the Journal of Language and Social Psychology, she explores how people savour different types of communication.

Floods linked to skin infections

Floods are associated with an increased risk of skin infections among humans, a skin expert has warned. Skin and soft tissue infections can develop when injured skin is exposed to floodwaters containing sewage, chemicals and other pollutants, HealthDay reported. In particular, natural disasters like tsunamis and hurricanes can cause major soil disruption that leads to the release of unusual infectious organisms. “The health implications for people exposed to floodwaters are staggering and include a wide variety of dermatologic issues, such as wound infections, contact dermatitis and even electrical injuries from downed power lines,” said Justin Bandino, Assistant Professor at the San Antonio Military Medical Centre in the US. “In cases when malnourished patients have not had access to food and clean water, even a small, superficial cut that has been exposed to these infectious organisms can result in a potentially dangerous infection,” he said.