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Why Is Trehalose an Exceptional Protein Stabilizer? E-mail

AN ANALYSIS OF THE THERMAL STABILITY OF PROTEINS IN THE PRESENCE OF THE COMPATIBLE OSMOLYTE TREHALOSE

Jai K. Kaushik and Rajiv Bhat
From the Centre for Biotechnology, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi 110067, India  Journal Biol. Chem., Vol. 278, Issue 29, 26458-26465, July 18, 2003

Trehalose, a naturally occurring osmolyte, is known to be an exceptional stabilizer of proteins and helps retain the activity of enzymes in solution as well as in the freeze-dried state. To understand the mechanism of action of trehalose in detail, we have conducted a thorough investigation of its effect on the thermal stability in aqueous solutions of five well characterized proteins differing in their various physico-chemical properties.

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Trehalose better for teeth than regular sugar E-mail

Sugars and dental caries

Riva Touger-Decker and Cor van Loveren with the University of Medicine & Dentistry of New Jersey, School of Health Related Professions, New Jersey Dental School, Newark (RT-D), and the Academic Centre for Dentistry, Amsterdam (CvL).  Published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 78, No. 4, 881S-892S, October 2003

This paper outlines how [certain] disaccharides, particularly trehalose ... ha[s] a lower cariogenic risk than does sucrose.

[Dental caries is an infectious disease which damages the structures of teeth. Tooth decay or cavities are consequences of caries.]

Abstract:

A dynamic relation exists between sugars and oral health. Diet affects the integrity of the teeth; quantity, pH, and composition of the saliva; and plaque pH. Sugars and other fermentable carbohydrates, after being hydrolyzed by salivary amylase, provide substrate for the actions of oral bacteria, which in turn lower plaque and salivary pH. The resultant action is the beginning of tooth demineralization.

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Probiotics latest weapon against superbugs E-mail
PROBIOTIC yoghurts are the latest weapons being used by hospitals to cut the risk of patients developing superbugs such as Clostridium difficile, it was revealed yesterday.
Free pots of yoghurts containing "friendly" bacteria are being handed out to patients deemed to be at a higher risk of contracting potentially fatal superbugs.

The trial is being carried out at hospitals run by Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust. Matthew Fletcher, its medical director, said: "We are providing probiotic yoghurt to patients on the wards where we ha ve previously had more cases of C diff.

"There is some evidence to suggest that using these probiotics may reduce a patient's risk of C diff, and we will be evaluating the difference this has made to the number of cases."

Friendly bacteria are said to aid digestion in the gut and reduce the chances of having stomach upsets. Research suggests they help prevent bowel conditions such as ulcerative colitis, protect children against allergies and may even cut the risk of colon cancer.

Probiotic products may be in the form of yoghurt-style drinks, supplements or powders. All claim to improve health by boosting the levels of beneficial bacteria in the gut.

Some 50 different products are marketed in the UK. But scientists in 2006 warned that some did not live up to the promises made on their labels. The warning did not apply to big-name brands such as Yakult, Actimel and Vitality.

Source
Expand Your MIND – Improve Your Brain E-mail

Expand Your Mind Improve Your BrianFrom the Foreword by Robert K. Murray, MD, PhD:
I came to know JC Spencer via his founding of The Endowment for Medical Research (Houston, Texas) and through his organization (and that of his many inspiring colleagues) of the first two Glycomics Medical Conferences sponsored by The Endowment. A major aim of these very successful and well attended Conferences was to inform healthcare workers and others of the new scientific area of Glycomics and its possible application to helping individuals suffering from chronic neurodegenerative conditions.

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Influence of trehalose in foods E-mail

Influence of trehalose addition and storage conditions on the quality of strawberry cream filling

Abstract

Strawberry cream fillings are usually produced commercially by evaporation. This process can cause degradation of colour and loss of some aroma compounds in the final product. In the present study, freeze-drying was used as an alternative to evaporation and the quality of the products obtained by the two processes were compared. In addition, the influence of trehalose, used at concentrations of 3%, 5% and 10% as a partial replacement of sucrose, on the quality of strawberry cream filling stored at room temperature over a period of 6 months was investigated. The control sample was taken to be a strawberry cream filling prepared by evaporation and without the addition of trehalose. Both, colour and aroma of samples were significantly influenced by trehalose addition. The anthocyanin content of the cream fillings increased proportionally with trehalose addition, but this was not the case with fruity esters. Freeze-dried samples exhibited better colour and higher anthocyanin content, as well as higher content of fruity esters in comparison with the samples produced by evaporation. In addition, strawberry cream fillings were packed in air and nitrogen atmosphere, and stored for 5 months at room temperature. Trehalose addition and packaging atmosphere also influenced colour, aroma and texture.

Source: Science Direct

High Fructose Corn Syrup May be Cause for Obesity Epidemic E-mail

Consumption of high-fructose corn syrup in beverages may play a role in the epidemic of obesity

George A Bray, Samara Joy Nielsen and Barry M Popkin

Abstract

Obesity is a major epidemic, but its causes are still unclear. In this article, we investigate the relation between the intake of high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and the development of obesity. We analyzed food consumption patterns by using US Department of Agriculture food consumption tables from 1967 to 2000. The consumption of HFCS increased > 1000% between 1970 and 1990, far exceeding the changes in intake of any other food or food group. HFCS now represents > 40% of caloric sweeteners added to foods and beverages and is the sole caloric sweetener in soft drinks in the United States. Our most conservative estimate of the consumption of HFCS indicates a daily average of 132 kcal for all Americans aged 2 y, and the top 20% of consumers of caloric sweeteners ingest 316 kcal from HFCS/d. The increased use of HFCS in the United States mirrors the rapid increase in obesity. The digestion, absorption, and metabolism of fructose differ from those of glucose. Hepatic metabolism of fructose favors de novo lipogenesis. In addition, unlike glucose, fructose does not stimulate insulin secretion or enhance leptin production. Because insulin and leptin act as key afferent signals in the regulation of food intake and body weight, this suggests that dietary fructose may contribute to increased energy intake and weight gain. Furthermore, calorically sweetened beverages may enhance caloric overconsumption. Thus, the increase in consumption of HFCS has a temporal relation to the epidemic of obesity, and the overconsumption of HFCS in calorically sweetened beverages may play a role in the epidemic of obesity.

From the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA (GAB), and the Department of Nutrition, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (SJN and BMP). American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 79, No. 4, 537-543, April 2004 American Society for Clinical Nutrition

Study Reports on the Toxin Bisphenol-a (BPA) E-mail

(Houston - April 15, 2008) - J. C. Spencer

Bisphenol-a has been detected in 93% of the human population over 6 years of age.  Bisphenol-a today may be as serious to our society as lead pipes were to the Roman Empire.  BPA has been used in plastics since the 1950s.  Laboratory studies have linked BPA with breast cancer, prostate cancer, early puberty in females and behavioral changes according to a study released April 15, 2008. 

BPA is found in baby bottles and linings of canned powdered baby formula and liquid baby formula.  Mike Shelby, director of the Center for Evaluation for Risks to Human Reproduction, who oversaw the report said, “[BPA] is everywhere.”
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Lyme Disease for Life? E-mail

Chronic Symptoms, Unproven Treatments Typify Mysterious Tick-Borne Illness

For an estimated 20,000 Americans each year, the symptoms above culminate in a diagnosis of Lyme disease -- an inflammatory bacterial illness transmitted by the bite of a deer tick.

Fortunately for the vast majority of Lyme disease sufferers, two to four weeks worth of antibiotic therapy is enough to spur a total recovery from the illness.

But a very small number of patients report a much more serious struggle with the illness.

Brooke Landau, a traffic reporter for the ABC News affiliate KGTV in San Diego, was one of these patients.

Read more...
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