All news from Anaesthesiology

Infectious Bacteria at High Rates, Vampire Bats Found to be Carriers

Bartonella are bacteria that cause endocarditis, a potentially life-threatening illness in humans and domestic animals. In Latin America, common vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus) are frequently infected by Bartonella, and their subsistence on blood creates a risk for bacterial transmission from bats to humans and livestock.

A study published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases by Daniel Becker at Montana State University in Bozemandistributed found Bartonella infections in vampire bats are highly prevalent in Peru and Belize, and that Bartonella genotypes are distributed widely, rather than clustered geographically.

Cells Alter tRNA Mechanism To Regulate Protein Synthesis

New research has uncovered the mechanism used by cells to optimize the production of proteins in stressful situations by altering tRNA abundance. The regulating mechanism may play a vital role in preventing the proliferation of tumors.

Researchers from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, and the Medical Research Council Cambridge (UK), for the first time, describe the mechanism used by cells to optimize the production of proteins in stressful situations by altering tRNA abundance.

Effects Of Microgravity On Gene Expression, Protein Content Of Human Chondrocytes

Going into space might wreak havoc on our bodies, but a new set of microgravity experiments may help shed light on new approaches for treating cartilage diseases on Earth. Scientists suggest that our cartilage tissue that serves as a cushion between bones might be able to survive microgravity relatively unscathed. The study was published in The FASEB Journal. 

Specifically, when in a microgravity environment, chondrocytes (a main component of cartilage) were more stable and showed only moderate alterations in shape and structure when compared to their Earthbound counterparts.

This was particularly the case for those also exposed to growth factors and specific nutrients. For those of us on the ground, the success of the growth factors and nutrients suggests that it might be possible to halt cartilage degradation or even reverse it with improved nutrition and/or new drugs.

Neuroscience Improves General Anesthesia

People sometimes mistakenly think of general anesthesia as just a really deep sleep but in fact, anesthesia is really four brain states unconsciousness, amnesia, immobility and suppression of the body's damage sensing response, or "nociception."

The study was published in Anesthesia & Analgesia. MIT neuroscientist and statistician Dr. Emery Brown and colleagues argue that by putting nociception at the top of the priority list and taking a principled neuroscientific approach to choosing which drugs to administer, anesthesiologists can use far less medication overall, producing substantial benefits for patients.