More exciting, ocrelizumab was found to slow the symptoms of progressive MS for the duration of the 12-week study. (3) Look for FDA approval soon.
3) Key Brain Difference in Autism
Scientists at MIT and Harvard have found a connection between a neurotransmitter in the brain and autism. The role of the transmitter involved, GABA, functions to inhibit brain cells from firing in response to environmental stimuli. (4)
While more research into GABA levels and autism are needed, these findings promise new advances in diagnosis, treatment and prevention of autism. (4)
4) Autism Linked to Antidepressant Use in Pregnancy
In other autism news, please vaccinate your children. While there is no scientific evidence linking vaccines to autism, 2015 did reveal a possible link between antidepressant use during pregnancy and autism.
Boys with autism were found to be three times as likely to have been exposed to SSRI antidepressants in utero than typically developing boys. The risk was greatest when mothers took SSRIs during the first trimester. (5)
5) Ovarian Cancer Screening Reduces Mortality
In the largest study ever conducted, ovarian cancer screening has been found to reduce women’s mortality by an estimated 20 percent. (6)
Over 200,000 women participated in this randomized controlled trial through 13 trial centers located in England, Northern Ireland and Wales. To date, ovarian cancer is usually caught late, with over 60 percent of women dying from the disease within five years. (6)
Little progress has been made in ovarian cancer treatment in the last 30 years. Study authors believe ovarian cancer screening opens up a new era in ovarian cancer research and care.
6) Athleticism May Be the Fountain of Youth
Elite runners have been shown not to experience the muscle weakness associated with aging. But when muscles of older elite runners and non-athletes in the same age range were tested, the athletes in their 80s and 90s showed the same decreased muscle quality as their non-athletic peers. (7)
So how do the older runners maintain their muscular strength?