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Healthy Times Healthy Times
« on: April 13, 2011, 03:15:06 PM »

Many parents still give tots colds medicine
23 February 2011, 2:55 pm

Although research has linked over-the-counter cough and cold products to poisoning or death in hundreds of children, ages 2 and younger, a new poll finds that most parents continue to treat their tots with the medicines.

In 2008, the United States Food and Drug Administration formally recommended that OTC cough and cold products not be given to children under age 2, but a national poll by the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital shows that 61 percent of parents of children, ages 2 and younger, gave their children OTC cough and cold medicine within the last 12 months. The poll also shows that more than half of parents report that their child’s doctor says OTC cough and cold medications are safe for children under 2; half of their physicians said they are effective.

“FDA warnings about OTC cough and cold medicines prompted a voluntary recall of products marketed for children younger than 2 years,” said Dr. Matthew Davis, director of the poll and associate professor in the Child Health Evaluation and Research Unit at the U-M Medical School. “We wanted to see how well parents and physicians were adopting those recommendations. Unfortunately, this latest poll indicates that the FDA warnings have gone unheeded by the majority of parents, and surprisingly, many physicians.”

For the FDA advice on the products, click here.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Is freeway pollution damaging our brains?
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2011, 09:13:02 AM »

Is freeway pollution damaging our brains?
14 April 2011, 7:22 am

A new study on mice shows that significant brain damage occurs after short-term exposure to typical freeway pollution.

The signs include memory loss and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.

The culprits are the tiny particles that result from burning fossil fuel and weathering of car parts and pavement, according to the study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

In the mice subjected to the equivalent of freeway pollution, neurons involved in learning and memory showed significant damage, brains showed signs of inflammation associated with premature aging and Alzheimer’s disease, and neurons from developing mice did not grow as well.

The freeway particles were less than 200 nanometers in size, or about 1000th the width of a human hair, and too small for car passenger compartment air filters to trap.

The exposure of the mice to freeway pollution lasted 150 spread over 10 weeks in three sessions a week lasting five hours.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Smoke-free policy manual available
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2011, 11:14:46 AM »

Smoke-free policy manual available
14 April 2011, 11:13 am

Henry Ford Health System has co-authored a how-to manual that offers hospitals and other health care organizations practical strategies for implementing and enforcing a successful smoke-free or tobacco-free policy on their property.

The 28-page manual “Keeping Your Hospital Property Smoke-Free” is the result of a four-year research project funded by the Flight Attendant Medical Research Institute and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. It was written in collaboration with The Joint Commission, and can be downloaded by clicking here.

Although designed for hospitals, many of the strategies can be used by clinics, doctor’s office and other businesses.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times MMHS Family Center gets new name
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2011, 07:10:49 AM »

MMHS Family  Center gets new name
15 April 2011, 7:01 am

Mercy Memorial Hospital System has changed the name of the The Family Center in Suite 105 at 700 Stewart Rd.

The new name, Mercy Memorial Outpatient Behavioral Health Services, better reflects the services offered to the community, said John Kibble, MMHS vice president of business development and strategy.

“We are excited to provide this important patient care service to the communities we serve,” Mr. Kibble said. “The new name will give this program a better identity in the public and shows the association with Mercy Memorial Hospital System, which brings high-quality health care to the forefront.”

The Outpatient Behavioral Services Department continues to provide a range of mental health and substance abuse services for children, adolescents, adults and families, including diagnostic evaluation and consultation; individual and group treatment; family therapy; medication assessment and management; stress reduction programs; substance abuse services; and educational programs. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call (734) 240-1760.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Medicine-related injuries rising, study finds
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2011, 09:12:22 AM »

Medicine-related injuries rising, study finds
19 April 2011, 8:07 am

The number of people treated in U.S. hospitals for illnesses and injuries from taking medicines jumped 52 percent between 2004 and 2008 – from 1.2 million to 1.9 million – according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

The medication side effects and injuries resulted from taking or being given the wrong medicine or dosage.

The federal agency also found that in 2008:

– The top five categories of medicines that had more than 838,000 people treated and released from emergency departments were: unspecified medicines (261,600); pain killers (118,100), antibiotics (95,100), tranquilizers and antidepressants (79,300), corticosteroids and other hormones (71,400).

– For patients admitted to the hospital, the top five categories causing side effects and injuries were corticosteroids (used for such illnesses as asthma, arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and other conditions –283,700 cases, painkillers (269,400), blood-thinners (218,800), drugs to treat cancer and immune system disorders (234,300), and heart and blood pressure medicines (191,300).

– More than half (53 percent) of hospitalized patients treated for side effects or other medication-related injuries were age 65 or older, 30 percent were 45 to 64, 14 percent between 18 and 44, and 3 percent under age 18. Children and teenagers accounted for 22 percent of emergency cases.

– About 57 percent of the hospitalized patients and 61 percent of emergency department cases were female.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Balanced diet can ease allergies, asthma
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2011, 09:10:31 AM »

Balanced diet can ease allergies, asthma
20 April 2011, 7:13 am

Allergy and asthma sufferers can ease their symptoms by avoiding certain foods and getting a dose of key vitamins, according to Dr. Fred Pescatore, author of The Allergy & Asthma Cure.

“If you or someone you love has had to deal with sneezing, itchy eyes, breathlessness, rashes, and other symptoms this time of year, unbalanced eating habits may be to blame,” he says. “Proper nutrition can make a dramatic difference.”

For example, he says those with yeast or mold allergies should consider a low-yeast diet, avoiding fermented foods, aged cheeses, and mushrooms. During grass season, limit consumption of milk products to avoid congestion, as well as all grains including corn, wheat, oats, rye and rice.

“Refined sugars, flours, and processed food all trigger inflammation, so steer clear of them,” he adds. “Additionally, avoiding specific foods that cross-react with environmental allergens can reduce your overall ‘allergy burden,’ which can allow your body to better handle your inhaled allergens.” Tree allergy season, he notes, peaks in April and extends in June, so during this period it is best to avoid celery, carrots, apples, potatoes, peaches, nuts, and spices belonging to the apiaceae family, i.e. anise, caraway, coriander, cumin, fennel, parsley and parsnip.

Dr. Pescatore also has found that certain nutritional supplements can help allergy and asthma sufferers. Specifically, Vitamin D3 can decrease inflammation, Vitamin C helps combat the added stress to our bodies caused by allergies, and Vitamin A helps rid the body of mucus. Additionally, Vitamin B12 stabilizes the imbalance of bacteria that occurs in the gut of most allergy sufferers, Pantethine works as a natural steroid that produces a helpful enzyme, quercetin is one of nature’s best antihistamines, and magnesium helps your body rid itself of the toxins we consume and face daily while helping us breathe more easily.

Closing windows at night prevents allergens from entering the home, and having an air purifier can cut airborne allergens, including mold. Taking your shoes off before going inside will prevent some allergens from entering with you, and you should vacuum your car’s interior where pollen hide. Even rubbing olive oil on your hair at night is recommended—because it will keep pollen from getting on your bedding.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Insecure tots can become obese kids
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2011, 11:12:27 AM »

Insecure tots can become obese kids
20 April 2011, 10:06 am

Toddlers who don’t have a secure emotional relationship with their parents, especially their moms, might end up with weight problems by age 4½, according to new research.

The study suggests that children who show insecure attachment patterns at age 2 have at least 30 percent higher odds for obesity by age 4½.

The association persisted even after researchers accounted for other family-related factors that could provide alternative explanations for the children’s obesity.

Psychologists describe securely attached children as those who rely on their parents as a “safe haven,” which allows them to explore their environments freely, adapt easily to new people and be comforted in stressful situations. Toddlers who are insecurely attached tend to have experienced negative or unpredictable parenting, and may respond to stress with extreme anger, fear or anxiety, or avoid or refuse interactions with others.

The findings suggest that overlapping regulatory areas of the brain that govern emotional and stress responses, as well as control appetite and energy balance, could provide a stronger influence than previously thought on the likelihood that a young child will be obese.

“I hope this work can help to broaden our thinking about the causes of childhood obesity,” said Sarah Anderson, assistant professor of epidemiology at Ohio State University and lead author of the study.

“Our hypothesis is that secure attachment could reduce the risk for childhood obesity by preventing frequent or exaggerated stress responses from disrupting the normal functioning and development of the systems that affect energy balance and body weight. Children’s stress responses and emotion regulation are formed in early childhood in the context of parent-child interactions, and one indicator that the child has developed healthy emotion regulation and stress response is secure attachment.”

Anderson co-authored the paper with Robert Whitaker, professor of public health and pediatrics at Temple University. The research is published in a recent issue of the journal Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times FDA warns against hand-sanitizer claims
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2011, 09:07:26 AM »

FDA warns against hand-sanitizer claims
22 April 2011, 7:37 am

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has warned four companies that make hand sanitizers to stop claiming the products prevent infection from methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteria (MRSA).

Labeling and marketing materials for the affected products also claim that they can prevent infection from other disease-causing agents. In addition, the labeling of some of the firms’ hand sanitizing drug products make claims related to preventing infection from E.coli and/or H1N1 flu virus. The FDA said it does not have sufficient evidence demonstrating that these products are safe and effective for these purposes.

The FDA warning letters were sent to the following firms:

Tec Laboratories for Staphaseptic First Aid Antiseptic/Pain Relieving Gel;

JD Nelson and Associates for Safe4Hours Hand Sanitizing Lotion and Safe4Hours First Aid Antiseptic Skin Protectant;

Dr. G.H. Tichenor Antiseptic Co. for Dr. Tichenor’s Antiseptic Gel;

Oh So Clean, Inc dba CleanWell Company for CleanWell All-Natural Foaming Hand Sanitizer, CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer, CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizing Wipes, and CleanWell All-Natural Antibacterial Foaming Handsoap

The warning letters explain that the companies are marketing these products in violation of federal law.

“MRSA is a serious public health threat,” said Deborah Autor, director of the Office of Compliance in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “The FDA cannot allow companies to mislead consumers by making unproven prevention claims.”

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Acetaminophen overdoses common
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2011, 09:13:24 AM »

Acetaminophen overdoses common
4 May 2011, 7:25 am

Overdoses of the common household drug acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol and other over-the-counter drugs, leads to more than 78,000 emergency department (ED) visits a year, and the majority of the overdoses are intentional, according to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It’s a big problem and the study found three main causes among ED patients, according to the Health Behavior News Service, part of the Center for Advancing Health.

“About 70 percent are for self-harm attempts, and 13 percent to 14 percent are kids getting into products,” said lead study author Dr. Daniel Budnitz. “The other 16 percent are the adolescents and adults that generally fall into two groups: the younger adults that are misusing over-the-counter products because they are trying to get better pain control and don’t understand the risks, and the older adults that are making some errors using the opioid combination products.”

Consumers take acetaminophen to reduce pain or fever, as a single drug in tablets, capsules or liquid. Acetaminophen combines with other drugs in a variety of over-the-counter cold, flu and sinus medicines including Theraflu, Triaminic and Sudafed. Acetaminophen also appears in combination with an opioid — a narcotic— in prescription medicines like Vicodin (with hydrocodone) or in Percocet (with oxycodone).

Emergency visits related to abuse of acetaminophen products were not included in the study, which appears in the June issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Young people ages 15 to 24 are at highest risk for suicide attempts or acts of self-harm involving acetaminophen, the researchers found. “Because these data are based on ED records, it is often difficult to determine exactly what motivated the patient — if they had a premeditated plan to end their life with an overdose or if the overdose was an impulsive act,” said Dr. Budnitz, medical officer at the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion.

Among the others in this age group, 75 percent of ED visits occurred because they went above the recommended acetaminophen dosage in search of quicker or stronger relief.

Taken correctly, acetaminophen is safe and effective, but the margin between a therapeutic and a dangerous dose is smaller than many people might realize.

“The toxic dose depends on the age of the person, how much they weigh and their liver function, but in general, 10 to 15 grams can cause what’s called hepatic necrosis, which is basically the liver cells dying,” Dr. Budnitz said. “So 10 grams — an extra-strength tablet is 500 milligrams of acetaminophen — that’s about 20 tablets.”

Overdoses caused by extra doses for symptom relief or other mistakes were more likely to involve over-the-counter products in people ages 15 to 24, and opioid-containing acetaminophen products in people older than 39.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times MCCC nursing program to get conditional accreditation
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2011, 09:13:24 AM »

MCCC nursing program to get conditional accreditation
4 May 2011, 7:35 am

An evaluation team representing the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission has said it will recommend to NLNAC that the Monroe County Community College associate degree in nursing program be granted continued accreditation status with conditions for a period of two years.

The college expects the conditions attached to the recommendation for continued accreditation to include addressing deficiencies in three of six standards through the completion of a report and accompanying campus visit by the NLNAC in 2013.  Those three standards include Faculty and Staff, Curriculum and Outcomes.

The NLNAC evaluation team now is producing a full written report that will include its recommendations regarding the associate degree in nursing program’s accreditation status and next accreditation visit to the NLNAC Evaluation Review Panel.  This panel will then make a recommendation to the NLNAC Board of Commissioners, which will take formal and final action on the recommendations by July 31.

NLNAC is responsible for the specialized accreditation of nursing education, including clinical doctorate, master’s degree, baccalaureate degree, associate degree, diploma and practical nursing programs.  It has authority and accountability for carrying out the responsibilities inherent in the application of standards and criteria, accreditation processes and the affairs, management, policy-making and general administration of NLNAC.

“Monroe County Community College values specialized nursing accreditation,” said MCCC President Dr. David E. Nixon.  “Accredited status by the NLNAC is reserved for the highest quality nursing programs, and we appreciate the time spent by the evaluators who completed a thorough and fair assessment of our associate degree in nursing program.  The college looks forward to implementing the team’s recommendations for improvement.  The college and the community have reason to be proud of this program – which has a long history of positive outcomes – and its graduates.”

The visit was the culmination of a 231-page Self-Study Report on the two options for completing an associate degree in nursing program:  traditional and online.  The report was developed by the nursing department and submitted to the NLNAC evaluation team in advance of the visit.   It is available on the college’s home page at www.monroeccc.edu.  

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Hospital gets cancer-screening grant
« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2011, 11:15:09 AM »

Hospital gets cancer-screening grant
10 May 2011, 10:40 am

Needy women might qualify for a free breast-cancer screening and diagnostic services thanks to a $28,000 grant Mercy Memorial Hospital System has received from the Northwest Ohio Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

The funds will be used for the hospital’s “Put Yourself First Today!” program, which provides screening and diagnostic mammograms, ultrasounds and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to uninsured and underinsured Monroe County residents.

The Komen grant will fund two Spa Saturdays that MMHS holds annually. Qualifying clients must be female, 40 years old or older, Monroe County residents, uninsured or underinsured with a demonstrated financial need. Women younger than 40 may qualify if they have a physician order indicating the medical necessity for the mammogram screening.

In addition, qualifying women can receive a screening mammogram year round with a doctor’s prescription. For more information or to schedule an appointment call (734) 240-4188.

“In today’s challenging economy and financial state, the ability to offer free screening and diagnostic mammography services through this grant encourages women to take care of their health proactively and save lives in the process,” said Gail Gedelian, MMHS lead technologist for mammography.

The grant to the hospital was among nearly $550,000 in community grants to 15 non-profit organizations during a recent “The Power of the Promise” reception held at the Toledo-Lucas County Main Library.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Michigan hospital ICUs cut infections
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2011, 03:16:58 PM »

Michigan hospital ICUs cut infections
10 May 2011, 2:14 pm

Intensive care units (ICUs) in both large and small hospitals stopped central line-associated bloodstream infections for up to 2 years after using a targeted quality improvement initiative funded in part by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.  The initiative, known as the Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program, or CUSP, was implemented through the Keystone Intensive Care Unit Project in Michigan hospitals.

The study, “The Ability of Intensive Care Units to Maintain Zero Central Line–Associated Bloodstream Infections” published in today’s issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine found that hospital ICUs eliminated central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) for an extended period of time – up to 2 years or more.  The researchers found that 60 percent of the 80 ICUs evaluated went 1 year or more without an infection, and 26 percent achieved 2 years or more. Smaller hospitals sustained zero infections longer than larger hospitals, the researchers found.

“Previous research has shown that using CUSP to reduce healthcare-associated infections works,” said AHRQ Director Carolyn M. Clancy, M.D. “This study gives us even better news – that results from efforts to eliminate these deadly and costly infections can be sustained.”

A CLABSI is a serious healthcare-associated infection (HAI) that is introduced into the bloodstream through a central line. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at any one point in time one in every 20 hospital patients in the United States has an HAI.

“This study demonstrates that any hospital ICU can go a year or two without an infection if it commits to implementing this targeted quality improvement initiative. With CUSP, the goal of a year or two without a CLABSI is achievable,” said the study’s lead author, Peter J. Pronovost, M.D., Ph.D., a professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. In conjunction with the Michigan Health and Hospital Association, Dr. Pronovost led development of the AHRQ-sponsored Keystone Intensive Care Unit Project to reduce infections in Michigan hospitals by implementing CUSP.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Rural residents have greater chance of eye injury
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2011, 11:12:42 AM »

Rural residents have greater chance of eye injury
13 May 2011, 10:13 am

Rural Americans were five times more likely than urban residents to be treated in emergency departments for eye injuries in 2008, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

The federal agency found that rural Americans made 646 visits to hospital emergency departments per 100,000 people in 2008, compared to 120 visits per 100,000 people by those in urban areas. People in the Northeast were the most frequently seen in emergency departments for eye injury (256 visits per 100,000 people) and those in the West the least (156 visits per 100,000 people). The Midwest and South fell in between – 242 visits and 200 visits per 100,000 people, respectively.

AHRQ also found that for patients treated in the emergency department and released in 2008 (97 percent of all patients treated for eye injuries):

• The three most common types of the roughly 637,000 eye injuries were cornea scratches (50 percent), followed by cuts to the eyelid or around the eye (9 percent), and bruises around the eye (7 percent).

• Of these injuries, 32 percent were caused by being hit in the eye by something or someone, falling down (9 percent), getting a caustic substance in the eye (4 percent), insect bites or other reasons (3 percent), or being in a motor vehicle accident (nearly 3 percent).

For the 3 percent of patients admitted to the hospital for eye injuries in 2008:

• The most common types of injuries were wounds to the tear glands (17 percent), bruised eye sockets (15 percent), and bruised eyelids (11 percent).

• Falls were the major cause of these injuries (36 percent), followed by motor vehicle accidents (19 percent), being hit by something or somebody (12 percent), other reasons including insect bites (3 percent), and getting burned by a caustic substance (1 percent).

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times Area resident named to Hall of Fame
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2011, 07:09:00 AM »

Area resident named to Hall of Fame
18 May 2011, 6:32 am

David Brown of Monroe has been inducted into the Grassroots Advocacy Hall of Fame by the National Association of Community Health Centers.

Mr. Brown is president of the board of directors of the Family Medical Center of Michigan and is a Farm Bureau Insurance agent in Monroe.

His induction recognizes his lasting contributions to ensuring the creation, survival and strength of community health centers through dedicated and tireless efforts through the years.

“David has been a passionate advocate on behalf of health centers,” said Tom Van Coverden, president and chief executive officer of NACHC. “We would not be here today in such full forcer were it not for people like David in the community working for better health care. We deeply appreciate his tireless work, dedication and energetic leadership.”

Mr. Brown joined the Family Medical Center of Michigan board in 1987 and has been its president since 1993. During his tenure, the agency has grown from one location to five and expanded services to include dental and behavioral health care. He also served as president of the Michigan Primary Care Association from 2001 through 2003.

“David Brown has been an inspiration to all of us in his caring and courageous leadership in support of health care for the underserved,” said Kim Sibilsky, MPCA executive director. “He is a tireless advocate, and shares unselfishly his time, talent and experience in helping the health center community rise to our potential. I am honored to be a friend and colleague.”

“This induction into the Advocacy Hall of Fame is a huge honor and very humbling to me,” Mr. Brown said. “You don’t do this for the accolades, but rather because it’s the right thing to do, to speak for those who do not have a voice.”

Mr. Brown was one of five individuals inducted this year and the only board member among them.

Source: Healthy Times

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Healthy Times UM to study environmental, disease links
« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2011, 11:12:47 AM »

UM to study environmental, disease links
20 May 2011, 9:12 am

University of Michigan researchers will study the way environmental toxins change genetic programming, and how those changes contribute to chronic disease in adults.

Three research teams will focus on epigenetic regulation, oxidative stress, and endocrine disruptors. They’ll initially target four conditions: asthma; prematurity; metabolic syndrome; and neurodegenerative disease.

A good example of an area researchers hope to better understand is the link between pollution, inflammation and cardiovascular disease, said Dr. Howard Hu, one of the research leaders. “We now know that oxidation and inflammation are major risk factors for heart attack and cardiovascular disease, but we don’t know how air pollution makes those things happen,” he said. “If we’re successful, we can better pinpoint what components of air pollution drive this, and hopefully generate better data for regulating air pollution as well as new potential targets for drug therapy.”

Epigenetic changes are suspected to be a major mechanism for early life exposures that increase the risk of cancer, Alzheimer’s, and other chronic diseases. Take Alzheimer’s, a disease that in repeated twin studies often afflicts only one twin. This clearly demonstrates that it’s not just a genetic disease or both twins would have Alzheimer’s, Dr. Hu said. In fact, it’s suspected that genetics contributes to less than 50 percent of the condition’s occurrence.

The studies also will examine blood spots of children who have autism. “They are useful in determining what exposures occurred during pregnancy and what’s changed in the epigenome and later in life,” Dr. Hu said.

Source: Healthy Times

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