Research

Is there a connection between stress and Parkinson’s disease?

Most neurology text books will state that stress seems to exacerbate Parkinson’s disease symptoms and persons with Parkinson’s disease often describe the worsening of their tremor when having to speak publicly or the worsening of dyskinesias while watching a suspenseful movie scene. In spite of this observation there has not been a lot of research really examining the interplay of stress and the development or exacerbation of Parkinson’s. We know that stress can have effects … Read More

Men suffering from depression who have social support less likely to seek mental health treatment

Researchers, led by Alan Teo, M.D., assistant professor of psychiatry at OHSU, and researcher at the VA Portland Health Care System, sought to determine whether support from a loved one encourages people experiencing depression to seek treatment from a health provider or whether that support, by serving as informal treatment, inadvertently discourages people from seeking mental health services. Their findings show that men experiencing moderate or severe depression who had social support from family or … Read More

Diabetes drug may prevent recurring strokes and heart attacks

The OHSU Stroke Center was an integral part of an NIH-funded global study that has shown that a diabetes drug may prevent a second stroke or heart attack in patients with insulin resistance. The study was conducted at 167 institutions in seven countries, with the Oregon Stroke Center enrolling the second highest number of participants across the globe. Wayne Clark, M.D. was a co-author of the paper. The following press release was originally published by the NIH on February 17, 2016: NIH-funded … Read More

Special delivery: Discovery of viral receptor bodes better gene therapy

There is much hope for gene therapy’s future potential to treat a number of human diseases. The use of adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors to transport genetic material into cells has been critical to the initial success of experimental gene therapy treatments of hereditary diseases, including hemophilia B.  But in order to develop gene therapy cures for additional diseases and conditions, like diabetes and heart disease, it will be necessary to deliver the treatment to specific tissues. Achieving … Read More

Study hopes to clarify the link between sleep problems and Alzheimer’s disease

An upcoming study led by Jeffrey Iliff, Ph.D. and Bill Rooney, Ph.D. hopes to clearly determine the relationship between a lack of sleep and Alzheimer’s disease. The team received funding from the Paul G. Allen Foundation to test their approach. They hope to begin scanning the brains of participants within a year, using a 7-Tesla MRI (pictured below). Iliff and Rooney recently spoke to Jon Hamilton at NPR’s Morning Edition about the upcoming study and the importance of adequate sleep. Listen to … Read More

Year in review: The most popular “On the Brain” posts of 2015

As we welcome in the new year, here’s a look back at the brain-related news you may have missed; a round-up of our most read blog posts of 2015: 1. Acupuncture and diet changes to treat neuropathic pain Peripheral Neuropathy is a common neurologic condition, which affects the peripheral nerves. The most common symptoms associated with peripheral neuropathy are burning, tingling pain, which often feels like sharp electric sensation. More… 2. Dietary and lifestyle modifications for migraine … Read More

Neurology residents teach Milwaukie 5th graders about the brain

“What have you learned about the brain so far today?” Hands shot into the air all around the 5th grade classroom at Linwood Elementary. “I learned that you have to wear a helmet.” “I knew this already, but that the right side of the brain controls the left side of the body.” It was an unusual day. As a resident in pediatric neurology, I usually spend my days seeing patients in the hospital or in … Read More

Give Time: 3 ways to increase face-to-face contact with loved ones

With Thanksgiving just behind us and the end-of-the-year holiday seasons fast upon us, our minds often turn to our loved ones. In my family, we have made a conscious effort (and yes, with airfares these days, not a cheap one either!) to gather with an assortment of family members around Thanksgiving and Christmas. Though it can be an effort to meet up with family and friends, recent research brings home the point that this extra effort … Read More

Early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is key goal for OHSU researchers

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Symptoms include memory loss, personality changes and trouble thinking, and the disease typically worsens over time. Current treatments cannot stop the disease from progressing, but they can slow the development of symptoms temporarily. Clinical diagnosis is determined by noting the degree of a patient’s mental decline, which is not obvious until there is severe … Read More

A look back at a neuroscience meeting of the minds in the Pacific Northwest

A Congressman, a National Institutes of Health (NIH) director, a leader of a national advocacy group, and a scientist-turned-advocate shared a stage last month in Portland, OR, to talk about the importance and impact of neuroscience research nationwide. This Neuroscience Town Hall was the final event of the NeuroFutures conference, organized and sponsored by the OHSU Brain Institute, the University of Washington, and the Allen Institute for Brain Science, which brought together scientists and clinicians in … Read More

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