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Cortisol is a hormone made by the adrenal cortex (the outer layer of the adrenal gland). It helps the body use glucose (a sugar), protein, and fats. Cortisol made in the laboratory is called hydrocortisone. It is used to treat many conditions, including inflammation, allergies, and some cancers. Cortisol is a type of glucocorticoid hormone.
Gout attacks are most common at night

Gout attacks are most common at night

Research, published today, has shown that an acute gout attack is more than twice as likely to occur during the night or early morning hours as during the day. The increased prevalence of gout attacks at night time was observed even after 24 hours with no alcohol and low purine intake. [More]
Study highlights causes of postpartum disorders in new mothers

Study highlights causes of postpartum disorders in new mothers

In the days shortly after giving birth, most mothers experience a period of increased calmness and decreased stress responses, but around 20% of mothers experience anxiety. Some women may become depressed, and around one in a thousand can develop psychosis. The latest evidence indicates that these distressing responses to motherhood are still poorly understood, but that animal research could provide valuable clues to their causes. [More]
Advanced prebiotic Bimuno has ability to reduce anxiety

Advanced prebiotic Bimuno has ability to reduce anxiety

Clasado Biosciences Limited, the producers and suppliers of the second generation prebiotic Bimuno (B-GOS), a unique trans-galactooligosaccharide, and the Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, today announce the results of clinical research demonstrating for the first time that an advanced prebiotic (Bimuno) has the ability to reduce anxiety. [More]
SAFit-ligands provide foundation for novel treatment of stress-related psychiatric disorders

SAFit-ligands provide foundation for novel treatment of stress-related psychiatric disorders

The FK506-binding protein 51 (FKBP51) is an established risk factor for stress-related psychiatric disorders such as major depression. Drug discovery for FKBP51 has been hampered by the inability to pharmacologically differentiate against the very similar functional counterplayer FKBP52. [More]

Brain scientist wins 2015 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award for Psychology

A brain scientist who helped explain how our emotions affect what we learn and remember has won the 2015 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award for Psychology. [More]
Researchers discover molecular switch that triggers stress processes in the brain

Researchers discover molecular switch that triggers stress processes in the brain

At the Center for Brain Research at the MedUni Vienna an important factor for stress has been identified in collaboration with the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm (Sweden). This is the protein secretagogin that plays an important role in the release of the stress hormone CRH and which only then enables stress processes in the brain to be transmitted to the pituitary gland and then onwards to the organs. [More]
Higher surge of testosterone in competition not tied to winning, shows study

Higher surge of testosterone in competition not tied to winning, shows study

A higher surge of testosterone in competition, the so-called "winner effect," is not actually related to winning, suggests a new study of intercollegiate cross country runners. [More]
UH professor receives NIH grant for breast cancer research

UH professor receives NIH grant for breast cancer research

After earning her medical degree in China, Qian Lu, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Houston, felt she could help patients more by treating the mind as well as the body. She then decided to pursue a doctorate in psychology in the U.S. [More]
Researchers obtain detailed picture of how Gas5 RNA interacts with steroid hormone receptors

Researchers obtain detailed picture of how Gas5 RNA interacts with steroid hormone receptors

It arises from what scientists previously described as "junk DNA" or "the dark matter of the genome," but this gene is definitely not junk. [More]
Rare neuroendocrine tumours may be misdiagnosed as Cushing’s disease

Rare neuroendocrine tumours may be misdiagnosed as Cushing’s disease

Ectopic tumours secreting corticotropin-releasing hormone and adrenocorticotropic hormone are very rare in children and can result in a misdiagnosis of Cushing’s disease, say researchers. [More]
Fatty fish intake appears to increase antidepressant response rates

Fatty fish intake appears to increase antidepressant response rates

Up to half of patients who suffer from depression (Major Depressive Disorder, or MDD) do not respond to treatment with SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors). Now a group of Dutch researchers have carried out a study which shows that increasing fatty fish intake appears to increase the response rate in patients who do not respond to antidepressants. [More]
Newborns of mothers who smoke during pregnancy have altered stress hormones, DNA

Newborns of mothers who smoke during pregnancy have altered stress hormones, DNA

Researchers from The Miriam Hospital have studied the effects of smoking during pregnancy and its impact on the stress response in newborn babies. Their research indicates that newborns of mothers who smoke cigarettes during pregnancy show lower levels of stress hormones, lowered stress response, and alterations in DNA for a gene that regulates passage of stress hormones from mother to fetus. [More]
Parental understanding regarding daily experiences may affect adolescent health, well-being

Parental understanding regarding daily experiences may affect adolescent health, well-being

Adolescents whose parents better understand their daily experiences have better psychological adjustment, suggests a study in the October issue of Psychosomatic Medicine: Journal of Biobehavioral Medicine, the official journal of the American Psychosomatic Society. [More]
LCSB scientists characterize new tumour suppressor gene

LCSB scientists characterize new tumour suppressor gene

Scientists at the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine of the University of Luxembourg have published their findings that mutations in a gene known as "ARMC5" promote the growth of benign tumours in the adrenal glands and on the meninges: ARMC5 appears to belong to the group of so-called tumour suppressor genes. [More]
Preoperative IV ibuprofen improves quality of recovery after laparoscopic cholecystectomy surgery

Preoperative IV ibuprofen improves quality of recovery after laparoscopic cholecystectomy surgery

Cumberland Pharmaceuticals Inc. today announced that preoperative intravenous ibuprofen improved overall quality of recovery in patients undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy surgery. These results will be presented at the American Anesthesiology 2014 Annual Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana. [More]
Social status can impact health, happiness even among egalitarian forager-farmers

Social status can impact health, happiness even among egalitarian forager-farmers

In western society, where keeping up with the Joneses — or, better yet, surpassing them — is expected and even encouraged, status matters. So important is it that for many people, physical and emotional wellbeing are directly connected to their place in the social hierarchy. [More]
Epidurals and reduced postpartum depression: an interview with Dr. Zakowski

Epidurals and reduced postpartum depression: an interview with Dr. Zakowski

The “maternity blues”, which resolve within 10 days of giving birth, occurs in up to 80% of new moms. A major depressive episode, by Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) criteria, is defined as having at least a 2-week period of persistent depressed mood ... [More]

Relationship between stress hormones and immune function across different stages in life

Young people have a more robust immune response to the loss of a loved one, according to new research from the University of Birmingham, providing insight into how different generations cope with loss. [More]

Investigators report on potential effects of hormone in borderline personality disorder

In the current issue of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics a group of German investigators is reporting on the potential effects of a hormone in borderline personality disorder. [More]
Female rats whose great grandparents exposed to toxins become more vulnerable to stress

Female rats whose great grandparents exposed to toxins become more vulnerable to stress

Scientists have known that toxic effects of substances known as endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), found in both natural and human-made materials, can pass from one generation to the next, but new research shows that females with ancestral exposure to EDC may show especially adverse reactions to stress. [More]