Background Phthalates are endocrine-disrupting chemicals that influence thyroid hormones and sex steroids, both critical for brain development. Aim We studied phthalate concentrations in house dust in relation to the risks of developing autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or developmental delay (DD). Methods Participants were a subset of children from the CHARGE (CHildhood Autism Risks from Genetics and the Environment) case–control study.

The researchers sought to assess the relation of dietary trans fatty acid (dTFA) consumption to word-memory. They analyzed cross-sectional data from the 1999-2005 UCSD Statin Study. Participants were 1018 adult men and non-procreative women age ≥20 without diagnosed diabetes, CVD, or extreme LDL-cholesterol. Primary analyses focused on men, as only men (N = 694) were effectively represented in younger adult ages. “Recurrent words” assessed word memory. dTFA (grams/day) estimates were calculated from the Fred Hutchinson Food Frequency Questionnaire.

The snack food potato chips induces food intake in ad libitum fed rats, which is associated with modulation of the brain reward system and other circuits. Here, we show that food intake in satiated rats is triggered by an optimal fat/carbohydrate ratio. Like potato chips, an isocaloric fat/carbohydrate mixture influenced whole brain activity pattern of rats, affecting circuits related e.g. to reward/addiction, but the number of modulated areas and the extent of modulation was lower compared to the snack food itself.

In 2012, an Indian parliamentary committee reported that manufacturing licenses for large numbers of fixed dose combination (FDC) drugs had been issued by state authorities without prior approval of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) in violation of rules, and considered that some ambiguity until 1 May 2002 about states’ powers might have contributed. To our knowledge, no systematic enquiry has been undertaken to determine if evidence existed to support these findings.

Breastfeeding has clear short-term benefits, but its long-term consequences on human capital are yet to be established. We aimed to assess whether breastfeeding duration was associated with intelligence quotient (IQ), years of schooling, and income at the age of 30 years, in a setting where no strong social patterning of breastfeeding exists.

Developmental processes in the placenta and the fetal brain are shaped by the same biological signals. Recent evidence suggests that adaptive responses of the placenta to the maternal environment may influence central nervous system development. The researchers studied the association between in utero exposure to fine particle air pollution with a diameter less than 2.5 µm (PM2.5) and placental expression of genes implicated in neural development.

Pesticides have been associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD), but there are few data on important exposure characteristics such as dose-effect relations. It is unknown whether associations depend on clinical PD subtypes. The researchers examined quantitative aspects of occupational pesticide exposure associated with PD and investigated whether associations were similar across PD subtypes.

Original Source

Here we demonstrate that bisphenol A (BPA) exposure during a time point analogous to the second trimester in humans has real and measurable effects on brain development and behavior. Furthermore, our study is the first, to our knowledge, to show that bisphenol S, a replacement used in BPA-free products, equally affects neurodevelopment. These findings suggest that BPA-free products are not necessarily safe and support a societal push to remove all structurally similar bisphenol analogues and other compounds with endocrine-disruptive activity from consumer goods.

Long-term memory (LTM) is believed to be stored in the brain as changes in synaptic connections. Here, we show that LTM storage and synaptic change can be dissociated. Cocultures of Aplysia sensory and motor neurons were trained with spaced pulses of serotonin, which induces long-term facilitation. Serotonin (5HT) triggered growth of new presynaptic varicosities, a synaptic mechanism of long-term sensitization.

Usage of pyrethroid insecticides has increased dramatically over the past decade; however, data on their potential health effects, particularly on children, are limited. The researchers examined the cross-sectional association between postnatal pyrethroid exposure and parental report of learning disability (LD) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children 6-15 years of age.

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