nos-trum. pronunciation: \nos'-trum\. noun. Etymology: Latin, neuter of noster our, ours.
1. a medicine of secret composition recommended by its preparer but usually without scientific proof of its effectiveness.
2. a usually questionable remedy or scheme.
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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Garbage Research

Here's a couch potato's dream: What if a drug could help you gain some of the benefits of exercise without working up a sweat?

Scientists reported Thursday that there is such a drug — if you happen to be a mouse.

Sedentary mice that took the drug for four weeks burned more calories and had less fat than untreated mice. And when tested on a treadmill, they could run about 44 percent farther and 23 percent longer than untreated mice.

Just how well those results might translate to people is an open question. But someday, researchers say, such a drug might help treat obesity, diabetes and people with medical conditions that keep them from exercising.

"We have exercise in a pill," said Ron Evans, an author of the study. "With no exercise, you can take a drug and chemically mimic it."

Evans, of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute reports the work with colleagues in a paper published online Thursday by the journal Cell.

They also report that in mice that did exercise training, a second drug made their workout much more effective at boosting endurance. After a month of taking that drug and exercising, mice could run 68 percent longer and 70 percent farther than other mice that exercised but didn't get the drug

Doc D: I don’t happen to be a mouse. And I don’t want to work out more to make this happen.

Compound found in broccoli may help reverse blood vessel damage caused by diabetes, research suggests.

AHN (8/6, Sharma) reports that, according to a study published in the journal Diabetes, "[s]ulforaphane, a compound found in broccoli, could reverse the damage caused by diabetes to heart blood vessels" by triggering the "production of enzymes that protect the blood vessels." The compound "also causes a reduction in high levels of molecules that are responsible for significant cell damage," the authors said.

Doc D: Ho-hum. Call me when there’s a compound in beer and pizza that makes you live to be 100. If there is, I’m in there…

Doc D

Opinions are entirely my own. Quotations from AMA Morning Rounds (© U S News Custom Briefings)

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