BY LISA RAPAPORT: People who smoke or have diabetes may be more likely to have calcium deposits in brain regions crucial for memory, a Dutch study suggests.
The deposits were not associated with lower cognitive function, however.
Researchers examined cognitive test results and brain scans for 1,991 patients visiting a memory clinic at a Dutch hospital from 2009 to 2015. Overall, 380 patients, or about 19 percent, had calcification, or abnormal buildup of calcium, in the hippocampus, the region of the brain important for short-term and long-term memory.
Diabetics and smokers were about 50 percent more likely to have calcification in this region of the brain than other participants in the study, the researchers note in Radiology. (read more)
BY ALAN MOZES: Men and women with type 2 diabetes may face a significantly higher risk of developing Parkinson’s disease later in life, new British research suggests.
The finding of a link followed the tracking of Parkinson’s diagnoses among millions of diabetic and non-diabetic patients who use the National Health Service in England.
Study author Dr. Thomas Warner said that, after accounting for conditions that might mimic Parkinson’s, the research showed that those with type 2 diabetes had a 32 percent greater risk of later developing the progressively debilitating neurological disorder. (read more)
BY JUSTIN KAPLAN: Imagine a pre-meal pill that can reverse Type 2 diabetes, with no lasting side effects. It sounds like the ramblings of a far-out futurist. But study results released this week suggest it may be possible.
In the journal Nature Materials, a team of surgeons and material scientists from Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital unveiled a compound that can be taken as a pill, and then forms a temporary intestinal coating. This blocks nutrients like glucose — the sweet carb responsible for blood sugar spikes — from contacting the gut. (read more)
BY JACK WOODFIELD: A new discovery could lead to the creation of better treatments for people with type 1 diabetes who also have depression.
Galectin-3 is involved in promoting inflammatory immune system responses that help repair tissue damage, such as in response to injury or disease. But elevated levels have been linked to disorders including Alzheimer’s disease and cardiovascular disease. (read more)
BY JACK WOODFIELD: It is not necessary to treat diabetic infants with insulin syringes. This will be new clinical practice after a recent study, now published in Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology in which researchers from Bergen and Exeter tested the replacement of insulin syringes with tablets.
“All infants diagnosed with diabetes before six to seven months of age should be given a rapid gene test to change treatment as soon as possible from insulin to sulfonylurea tablets. They can expect a long and very good effect of the treatment of blood sugar control, and the treatment is safe,” says Professor Pål Rasmus Njølstad at the University of Bergen. (read more)