September 10, 2010

Turning Music to Science

1 Musical Prescriptions for Pain

One day, doctors may prescribe music to help with emotional or physical pain, say researchers working on a musical project at Glasgow Caledonian University. "We look at parameters such as rhythm patterns, melodic range, musical intervals, length of phrases, musical pitch and so on," says audio engineering specialist Dr. Don Knox, project leader. The specialists are hoping to use a combo of music psychology and audio engineering to explore the impact of music on emotions. Knox says that while some online music stores already tag music as happy or sad, their project will refine the approach, giving it a scientific foundation. The research may lead to more opportunities for the use of music, such as the development of music-based therapies to treat depression.

More at EureakAlert | Posted 7 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Tags: Glasgow Caledonian University, Rhythm Patterns, Melodic Range, Musical Intervals, Musical Pitch, Music for Pain, Music for Depression, Music Based Treatment, Music Based Therapy, Don Knox, Music Psychology, Tag Music

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (45%) / No! (55%)

Shake Tight, Walk Fast

2 Handshake Can Predict Life Span

A firm handshake or brisk walking pace can predict a longer life span in seniors, claim British researchers who analyzed 33 earlier studies made up of thousands of people. Even when researchers accounted for other factors like sex, body size and age, measures of physical capacity like handshake firmness helped reveal which seniors might live longer, says MSNBC. People with the weakest grip were 1.67 times as likely to die during the studies than stronger people. Plus, seniors with the slowest walking pace were almost three times more likely to die compared with the fastest. The findings were published in the British Medical Journal. Researcher Rachel Cooper says that further studies are needed to determine if physical measures like handshakes can be useful for doctors as screening tools.

More at MSNBC | Posted 7 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Tags: British Medical Journal, Life Expectancy, Predicting How Long Seniors Will Live, Predicting Lifespan, What Handshake Says, Life Span, How Long Seniors Live, Walking Pace Predicts Life Span, Rachel Cooper, Handshake Studies

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (54%) / No! (46%)

Converts Iron, Disabled by Zinc

3 Protein Linked to Alzheimer's Has a Function

The protein amyloid precursor protein (APP) that is linked to Alzheimer’s disease does have a function in the brain. It converts iron to a form that can be removed from neurons and stored. When it doesn't function normally, iron levels in neurons increase to toxic levels. Previous studies have shown when iron levels increase, APP protein levels also increase. In Alzheimer’s, high levels of iron and zinc are found in neurons and amyloid plaques, respectively. High levels of zinc that dissociate from the amyloid plaques disable the protein. Researchers believe that targeting zinc may be the key to developing treatments for Alzheimer’s. Clioquinol and PBT2, zinc ionophore drugs, have shown promise in animals and short-term clinical trials in people with Alzheimer’s.

More at Science Daily | Posted 7 years ago by Kristie Hayes

Previously: Biomarker in Spinal Fluid Diagnoses Alzheimer’s

Tags: Alzheimer’s, Iron, Zinc, APP, Amyloid Precursor Protein, Amyloid Plaques, Zinc Ionophores

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (49%) / No! (51%)

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