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Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health

Erping Long
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Alexandra Alvergne, Marija Vlajic Wheeler, Vedrana Högqvist Tabor
Background and objectives: The underlying reasons why some women experience debilitating premenstrual symptoms and others do not are largely unknown. Here, we test the evolutionary ecological hypothesis that some negative premenstrual symptoms may be exacerbated by the presence of chronic sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Methodology: 34 511 women were recruited through a digital period-tracker app. Participants were asked: (i) Have you ever been diagnosed with a STI? (ii) If yes, when was it, and were you given treatment? Those data were combined with longitudinal cycle data on menstrual bleeding patterns, the experience of pain and emotions and hormonal contraceptive use...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Silvie Huijben, Brian H K Chan, William A Nelson, Andrew F Read
Background and objectives: The rate of evolution of drug resistance depends on the fitness of resistant pathogens. The fitness of resistant pathogens is reduced by competition with sensitive pathogens in untreated hosts and so enhanced by competitive release in drug-treated hosts. We set out to estimate the magnitude of those effects on a variety of fitness measures, hypothesizing that competitive suppression and competitive release would have larger impacts when resistance was rarer to begin with. Methodology: We infected mice with varying densities of drug-resistant Plasmodium chabaudi malaria parasites in a fixed density of drug-sensitive parasites and followed infection dynamics using strain-specific quantitative PCR...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Kaspar Staub, Maciej Henneberg, Francesco M Galassi, Patrick Eppenberger, Martin Haeusler, Irina Morozova, Frank J Rühli, Nicole Bender
Background and objectives: The body mass index (BMI) is an established anthropometric index for the development of obesity-related conditions. However, little is known about the distribution of BMI within a population, especially about this distribution's temporal change. Here, we analysed changes in the distribution of height, weight and BMI over the past 140 years based on data of Swiss conscripts and tested for correlations between anthropometric data and standard blood parameters...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Mel Greaves, William Hughes
Cancer cells have a parasitic propensity in the primary host but their capacity to transit between individuals is severely restrained by two factors: a lack of a route for viable cell transfer and immune recognition in allogeneic, secondary recipients. Several examples of transmissible animal cancers are now recognised. In humans, the only natural route for transmission is via the haemochorial placenta which is permissive for cell traffic. There are three special examples of this occurring in utero : maternal to foetus, intraplacental twin to twin leukaemias and choriocarcinoma-extra-embryonic cells to mother...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Sean D Boyden, Martha Pott, Philip T Starks
Night terrors, also known as sleep terrors, are an early childhood parasomnia characterized by screams or cries, behavioral manifestations of extreme fear, difficulty waking and inconsolability upon awakening. The mechanism causing night terrors is unknown, and a consistently successful treatment has yet to be documented. Here, we argue that cultural practices have moved us away from an ultimate solution: cosleeping. Cosleeping is the norm for closely related primates and for humans in non-Western cultures...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
David Waynforth
Background and objectives: Jobs for life have become increasingly rare in industrialized economies, and have been replaced by shorter-term employment contracts and freelancing. This labour market change is likely to be accompanied by physiological changes in individuals who have experienced little job stability. Evolved responses to increased environmental instability or stochasticity include increased fat deposition and fight-or-flight responses, such as glucose mobilization and increased blood pressure...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Avantika Mainieri, David Haig
Background and objectives: The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling system is a major arena of intragenomic conflict over embryonic growth between imprinted genes of maternal and paternal origin and the IGF type 1 receptor (IGF1R) promotes proliferation of many human cancers. The 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR) of the mouse Igf1r mRNA is targeted by miR-675-3p derived from the imprinted H19 long noncoding RNA. We undertook a comparative sequence analysis of vertebrate IGF1R 3'-UTRs to determine the evolutionary history of miR-675 target sequences and to identify conserved features that are likely to be involved in post-transcriptional regulation of IGF1R translation...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Benjamin K Chan, Paul E Turner, Samuel Kim, Hamid R Mojibian, John A Elefteriades, Deepak Narayan
Management of prosthetic vascular graft infections caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa can be a significant challenge to clinicians. These infections often do not resolve with antibiotic therapy alone due to antibiotic resistance/tolerance by bacteria, poor ability of antibiotics to permeate/reduce biofilms and/or other factors. Bacteriophage OMKO1 binding to efflux pump proteins in P. aeruginosa was consistent with an evolutionary trade-off: wildtype bacteria were killed by phage whereas evolution of phage-resistance led to increased antibiotic sensitivity...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Daniel Z Grunspan, Randolph M Nesse, M Elizabeth Barnes, Sara E Brownell
Background and objectives: Evolutionary medicine is a rapidly growing field that uses the principles of evolutionary biology to better understand, prevent and treat disease, and that uses studies of disease to advance basic knowledge in evolutionary biology. Over-arching principles of evolutionary medicine have been described in publications, but our study is the first to systematically elicit core principles from a diverse panel of experts in evolutionary medicine. These principles should be useful to advance recent recommendations made by The Association of American Medical Colleges and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute to make evolutionary thinking a core competency for pre-medical education...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Riley M Bove
The goal of this review is to apply an evolutionary lens to understanding the origins of multiple sclerosis (MS), integrating three broad observations. First, only humans are known to develop MS spontaneously. Second, humans have evolved large brains, with characteristically large amounts of metabolically costly myelin. This myelin is generated over long periods of neurologic development-and peak MS onset coincides with the end of myelination. Third, over the past century there has been a disproportionate increase in the rate of MS in young women of childbearing age, paralleling increasing westernization and urbanization, indicating sexually specific susceptibility in response to changing exposures...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Claire White, Daniel M T Fessler
Grief is characterized by a number of cardinal cognitive symptoms, including preoccupation with thoughts of the deceased and vigilance toward indications that the deceased is in the environment. Compared with emotional symptoms, little attention has been paid to the ultimate function of vigilance in grief. Drawing on signal-detection theory, we propose that the ultimate function of vigilance is to facilitate the reunification (where possible) with a viable relationship partner following separation. Preoccupation with thoughts about the missing person creates the cognitive conditions necessary to maintain a low baseline threshold for the detection of the agent-any information associated with the agent is highly salient, and attention is correspondingly readily deployed toward such cues...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Syed Faaiz Enam, Shumaila Hashmi
Evolutionary Medicine (EM) is a fundamental science exploring why our bodies are plagued with disease and hindered by limitations. EM views the body as an assortment of benefits, mistakes, and compromises molded over millennia. It highlights the role of evolution in numerous diseases encountered in community and family medicine clinics of developing countries. It enables us to ask informed questions and develop novel responses to global health problems. An understanding of the field is thus crucial for budding doctors, but its study is currently limited to a handful of medical schools in high-income countries...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Charles L Nunn
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Robert Bayersdorf, Arrigo Fruscalzo, Francesco Catania
In jawed vertebrates, the adaptive immune system (AIS) cooperates with the innate immune system (IIS) to protect hosts from infections. Although targeting non-self-components, the AIS also generates self-reactive antibodies which, when inadequately counter-selected, can give rise to autoimmune diseases (ADs). ADs are on the rise in western countries. Why haven't ADs been eliminated during the evolution of a ∼500 million-year old system? And why have they become more frequent in recent decades? Self-recognition is an attribute of the phylogenetically more ancient IIS and empirical data compellingly show that some self-reactive antibodies, which are classifiable as elements of the IIS rather then the AIS, may protect from (rather than cause) ADs...
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Marco Archetti
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Randolph M Nesse, Caleb E Finch, Charles L Nunn
Compared with other primates, humans sleep less and have a much higher prevalence of Alzheimer 's disease (AD) pathology. This article reviews evidence relevant to the hypothesis that natural selection for shorter sleep time in humans has compromised the efficacy of physiological mechanisms that protect against AD during sleep. In particular, the glymphatic system drains interstitial fluid from the brain, removing extra-cellular amyloid beta (eAβ) twice as fast during sleep. In addition, melatonin - a peptide hormone that increases markedly during sleep - is an effective antioxidant that inhibits the polymerization of soluble eAβ into insoluble amyloid fibrils that are associated with AD...
January 16, 2017: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Amanda J Lea, Jenny Tung, Elizabeth A Archie, Susan C Alberts
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2017: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Paul W Turke
For hominins living in the Paleolithic era, early food antigen exposures- in utero and throughout infancy-closely matched later exposures, and therefore immune system tolerance mechanisms evolved under the expectation of this condition being met. This predicts that the degree of mismatch between early and downstream food antigen exposures is a key variable underlying the development of childhood food allergies. Three historical periods are identified in which the degree of mismatch climbs from near zero to substantial, as we transition from one period to another...
2017: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
Alison Gemmill, Ralph Catalano
Background and Objectives: Much literature argues that natural selection conserved menopause and longevity in women because those who stopped childbearing helped bolster daughters' fertility and reduce infant mortality among grandchildren. Whether the presence of grandmothers ever improved fitness sufficiently to affect longevity via natural selection remains controversial and difficult to test. The argument underlying the grandmother and associated alloparenting literature, however, leads us to the novel and testable prediction that the presence of older women in historical societies could have affected population health by reducing lethality associated with childbearing...
2017: Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health
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