New blood test may diagnose depression

By: Marla Paul
Posted on: June 05, 2015

The first blood test to diagnose major depression in adults has been developed by scientists at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. — a breakthrough approach that provides the first objective, scientific diagnosis for depression. The test identifies depression by measuring the levels of nine RNA blood markers. RNA molecules are the messengers that interpret the DNA genetic code... READ MORE

Pinpointing the cause of lower back pain

By: Beacon
Posted on: May 29, 2015

Lower back pain is among the most common complaints of older age. The lumbar or lower area of the spine can suffer from many different ailments.“You do most of your bending in the lower back, and that’s probably why the lower back tends to be affected more,” explained  Dr. Jeffrey Katz, a Harvard Medical School professor and editor of the Harvard Special Health... READ MORE

Research unlocks secrets of hearing loss

By: Beacon
Posted on: May 21, 2015

The ability to discern pitch — to hear the difference between “cat,” “bat” and “hat,” for example — hinges on remarkable gradations in specialized cells within the inner ear.New research from the University of Virginia School of Medicine and the National Institute on Deafness and Communication Disorders has explained, for the first time, what... READ MORE

First ‘generic’ biotech drug gets FDA nod

By: Matthew Perrone and Linda A. Johnson
Posted on: May 15, 2015

Government health officials recently approved the first lower-cost copy of a biotech drug in the U.S. — a long-awaited milestone that could save billions for insurers, doctors and patients. Biotech drugs are powerful, injected medicines produced in living cells. They are typically much more expensive than traditional chemical-based pills.The Food and Drug Administration approval... READ MORE

Specialty meds save lives, but at high cost

By: Tom Murphy
Posted on: May 07, 2015

Mati Munoz lost her liver to hepatitis C, and the virus was attacking its transplanted replacement last year when her doctor prescribed a drug combination that could save the organ.She just needed $7,000 for an initial payment not covered by her Medicare prescription plan.“I felt sunken,” the 65-year-old Woodbridge, N.J., woman said. “I thought, ‘How am I going to... READ MORE

Myths and facts: whole grains vs. gluten

By: Densie Webb, Ph.D., R.D.
Posted on: April 24, 2015

At first glance, whole grains like whole wheat, barley, quinoa and brown rice may not seem controversial, but misconceptions and half-truths abound, creating barriers to meeting the U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommendation to consume at least three servings of whole grains a day.Here’s what we learned on the subject at the recent conference “Whole Grains: Breaking Barriers,” ... READ MORE