18-45 Segment 1: MDMA for PTSD

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People suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder often can’t face their trauma, which is necessary for psychotherapy to work. It is a big reason PTSD is so difficult to treat. Scientists are leading clinical trials into the use of the banned drug MDMA in connection with therapy to help break this hurdle, and the results so far have been outstanding in curing PTSD.

Guests:

  • Dr. Michael Mithoefer, Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Medical University of South Carolina and Medical Director, MAPS Public Benefit Corporation clinical trials
  • Charlotte Harrison, Senior Clinical Research Associate, MAPS Public Benefit Corporation

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18-45 Segment 2: Leprosy in the Modern Era

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Thanks in part to its Biblical past, the disfiguring disease leprosy carries more stigma than most diseases. We hear little about it today, but it still exists, and because it’s now treatable, often the stigma is worse than the disease. An expert discusses.

Guest:

  • Dr. David Scollard, Director, National Hansen’s Disease Program

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Medical Notes 18-45


Medical Notes this week…

Acute myeloid leukemia, or AML is one of the deadliest cancers, with a five-year survival rate of about 25 percent… and even when a patient has a lasting remission, the disease almost always relapses. But a new study in the journal Nature Communications finds that the disease appears to be the fault of a single gene, which they’ve located. Researchers say the gene rewires the body’s entire set of blood-forming cells and tissues. They hope the breakthrough could eventually lead to a gene-targeted therapy and improve survival rates.

Scientists have discovered some of the reasons why people with obesity have a higher risk of asthma. A study in the Journal of Physiology—Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology shows that inflammation in airways is greater in people with obesity. Those with obesity are also more likely to over-respond to allergens in airway muscles…causing the airways to narrow. Researchers say the discoveries may improve asthma treatment.

Teachers often contribute to a diagnosis of attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder in children… but a new study concludes they may be mistaking immaturity for ADHD. The study in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry shows that it’s most often the youngest kids in a classroom who are diagnosed with ADHD. Experts also say that in children who are diagnosed… it appears that some parts of the brain mature up to three years later than in kids who are not labeled.

And finally… one good way to get the vitamins you need in the future may be to chew some gum. A study in the Journal of Functional Foods shows that gum loaded with vitamins delivers enough of them to significantly raise levels in the blood. Both water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins were effectively delivered in gum… and researchers say most people think it’s a pleasant way to get nutrition.

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