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Calcium, the most abundant mineral in the body, is found in some foods, added to others, available as a dietary supplement, and present in some medicines (such as antacids). Calcium is required for muscle contraction, blood vessel expansion and contraction, secretion of hormones and enzymes, and transmitting impulses throughout the nervous system. The body strives to maintain constant concentrations of calcium in blood, muscle, and intercellular fluids, though less than <1% of total body calcium is needed to support these functions.

The remaining 99% of the body's calcium supply is stored in the bones and teeth where it supports their structure. Bone itself undergoes continuous remodeling, with constant resorption and deposition of calcium into new bone. The balance between bone resorption and deposition changes with age. Bone formation exceeds resorption in growing children, whereas in early and middle adulthood both processes are relatively equal. In aging adults, particularly among postmenopausal women, bone breakdown exceeds formation, resulting in bone loss that increases the risk of osteoporosis over time.
SCAPE microscopy forms real-time 3D images of living organisms

SCAPE microscopy forms real-time 3D images of living organisms

Mannheim/Wetzlar, Germany. Leica Microsystems CMS GmbH has entered into an exclusive, worldwide licensing agreement with Columbia University in New York to commercialize SCAPE microscopy for Life Science applications. SCAPE (swept confocally aligned planar excitation) microscopy forms 3D images of living samples by scanning them with a sheet of laser light. [More]
Biological scientists provide new insight into fundamental aspect of human heart function

Biological scientists provide new insight into fundamental aspect of human heart function

AN INTERNATIONAL team of scientists have provided new insight into the Frank-Starling mechanism; a fundamental aspect of human heart function. [More]
Vitamin D deficiency may increase risk of developing bladder cancer

Vitamin D deficiency may increase risk of developing bladder cancer

Vitamin D deficiency is associated with an increased risk of developing bladder cancer, according to a systematic review of seven studies presented today at the Society for Endocrinology annual conference in Brighton. [More]
Risk of fracture still higher among women experiencing early menopause

Risk of fracture still higher among women experiencing early menopause

If you're in menopause before the age of 40, you have a higher fracture risk. That fact has already been proven by the Women's Health Initiative clinical trials. Now a new study evaluating the same WHI data further concludes that, even with calcium and vitamin D supplements, your risk of fracture is still higher. [More]
FRET-FLIM imaging techniques help researchers to study activity of proteins in dendritic spines

FRET-FLIM imaging techniques help researchers to study activity of proteins in dendritic spines

An ongoing challenge for scientists working to understand the brain is being able to see all its parts. Researchers have spent centuries developing better imaging techniques to see beyond the abilities of our naked eyes. [More]
New study to explore impact of vitamin K supplement on cardiovascular health of obese children

New study to explore impact of vitamin K supplement on cardiovascular health of obese children

Researchers want to know whether a vitamin K supplement is an effective, inexpensive way to help reduce the cardiovascular risk of obese children. [More]
Nova Biomedical’s new blood gas analyzer simplifies critical care testing

Nova Biomedical’s new blood gas analyzer simplifies critical care testing

Nova Biomedical simplifies critical care testing with Stat Profile Prime®, a new blood gas analyzer that combines the revolutionary micro-electronics of the consumer world with Nova’s innovative ZERØ™ maintenance cartridge technology for a smaller, faster, and less expensive critical care analyzer. [More]
Individualized vitamin D supplementation may benefit women during pregnancy

Individualized vitamin D supplementation may benefit women during pregnancy

Individualized supplement doses help protect pregnant women from vitamin D deficiency, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. [More]
Vanderbilt scientists develop new bioluminescent sensor that can light up brain cells in the dark

Vanderbilt scientists develop new bioluminescent sensor that can light up brain cells in the dark

A new kind of bioluminescent sensor causes individual brain cells to imitate fireflies and glow in the dark. [More]
Researchers develop new way to test strength of immune response

Researchers develop new way to test strength of immune response

The immune system orchestrates large and small scale attacks on innumerous targets: viruses, bacteria, cancer, but it also misfires causing allergy or autoimmune reactions. [More]
Certain medications can have important effect on success of dental implants, research shows

Certain medications can have important effect on success of dental implants, research shows

Each year, about 500,000 North Americans get dental implants. If you are one of them, and are preparing to have an implant, it might be a good idea to start taking beta blockers, medication that controls high blood pressure, for a while. And to stop taking heartburn pills. [More]
Researchers design small compounds with potential to correct mitochondrial dysfunction

Researchers design small compounds with potential to correct mitochondrial dysfunction

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is an inherited disorder that leads to a gradual loss of motor neurons and, eventually, paralysis. The condition is caused by genetic mutations that disrupts cells' energy factories, called mitochondria. [More]
New minimally invasive approach to diagnose hyperparathyroidism

New minimally invasive approach to diagnose hyperparathyroidism

Almost all of us have four parathyroid glands, located next to the thyroid gland in the neck. They are an organ only the size of a grain of rice, but critical for controlling our body's calcium levels. [More]
Calcium triggers virulence switch from acute to chronic lung infections

Calcium triggers virulence switch from acute to chronic lung infections

The bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a life-threatening pathogen in hospitals. About ten percent of all nosocomial infections, in particular pneumonia, are caused by this pathogen. [More]
Childhood cancer survivors have poor dietary quality in adulthood, new study finds

Childhood cancer survivors have poor dietary quality in adulthood, new study finds

Survivors of childhood cancer have poor adherence to federal dietary guidelines in adulthood, a new study finds. Diets lacking essential nutrients may exacerbate the chronic disease burden in a group already at an elevated risk for developing new conditions. [More]
Study unravels how caloric restriction provides beneficial effects to the brain

Study unravels how caloric restriction provides beneficial effects to the brain

Studies of different animal species suggest a link between eating less and living longer, but the molecular mechanisms by which caloric restriction affords protection against disease and extends longevity are not well understood. [More]
Biomedical engineers harvest bacterial genes that can improve electrical signaling in human cells

Biomedical engineers harvest bacterial genes that can improve electrical signaling in human cells

Duke University biomedical engineers have harvested genes for ion channels from bacteria that, with a few tweaks, can create and enhance electrical signaling in human cells, making the cells more electrically excitable. [More]
Study finds adequate levels of vitamin D among adolescents in the UK

Study finds adequate levels of vitamin D among adolescents in the UK

A study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, has shown high levels of vitamin D inadequacy in UK adolescents, and - for the first time - identified the intake needed by adolescents in order to maintain adequate serum vitamin D levels during the winter time. [More]
Sleep abnormality may play vital role in schizophrenia, say BIDMC experts

Sleep abnormality may play vital role in schizophrenia, say BIDMC experts

A sleep abnormality likely plays an important role in schizophrenia, according to sleep experts at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. [More]
Moderate calcium intake not linked to coronary artery calcification, says UAB cardiologist

Moderate calcium intake not linked to coronary artery calcification, says UAB cardiologist

A study recently published in the Journal of the American Heart Association is prompting headlines like "Calcium supplements might hurt your heart." [More]
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