Transitioning through menopause is not accompanied by a decline in working memory and perceptual speed, according to a study appearing in the Sept. 23 issue of Neurology Journal. In the study, led by researchers at the Department of Preventive Medicine, Rush-Presbyterian-St. Lukes Medical Center in Chicago, 803 randomly selected Chicago-area African American and white women aged 40 to 55 were tested annually for loss of brain function over the course of six years. The study, begun in 1996, is the first longitudinal study to track cognitive performance during menopause.
Participant scores were compared annually for women in premenopausal, during menopause, and postmenopausal groups. According to a "Patient Page" on menopause and brain function that appears in the Neurology Journal issue, "If menopause harms brain function, the test scores should have gone down the most for the postmenopause group, less for the group in menopause and not at all for the group not yet in menopause. The study did not find that pattern of decline. In fact, most groups improved their scores over time. In those groups that did go down, the size of the decline was so small that it could not be linked to menopause."
"The study is important because it shows that there is little or no risk for immediate memory loss during perimenopause," said Sam Gandy, M.D., Ph.D., vice chair of the Alzheimers Associations Medical and Scientific Advisory Council, and director, Farber Institute for the Neurosciences of Thomas Jefferson University. "The issue for Alzheimers disease is that it begins a decade or more before clinical cognitive or psychological changes are apparent. There remains an issue of whether perimenopausal hormone replacement therapy (HRT) would be useful in preventing AD later on, and this study does not answer that question."
Elizabeth Wilson | EurekAlert!
The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft
Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung
Controlling electronic current is essential to modern electronics, as data and signals are transferred by streams of electrons which are controlled at high speed. Demands on transmission speeds are also increasing as technology develops. Scientists from the Chair of Laser Physics and the Chair of Applied Physics at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) have succeeded in switching on a current with a desired direction in graphene using a single laser pulse within a femtosecond ¬¬ – a femtosecond corresponds to the millionth part of a billionth of a second. This is more than a thousand times faster compared to the most efficient transistors today.
Graphene is up to the job
At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.
Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
26.09.2017 | Life Sciences
26.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
26.09.2017 | Information Technology