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Author: admin, 06.11.2013. Category: Treatment For Tinnitus

Dec 17 (Reuters) - A leading type of stimulant used to treat attention deficit disorder can cause rare cases of painful and long-lasting erections, the U.S. The agency, in a notice on its website, said its review documented the problem, formally known as priapism, in males 8 to 33 years of age who took drugs containing methylphenidate.
Drug labels of such products will be updated to warn of the potential but rare danger, the FDA said. The agency said patients developing erections lasting more than four hours should seek immediate medical attention to prevent permanent damage to the penis.
A non-stimulant drug also used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Eli Lilly and Co's Strattera, has also been linked to priapism in young children, teenagers and adults. Research suggests that fetal exposure to chemicals or drugs can cause neurological problems.
Specifically, the study revealed parallels to autism in humans at the levels of brain cells, networks, and behavior, said study senior author Carlos Aizenman, associate professor of neuroscience at Brown. To conduct the study, Aizenman’s group reared tadpoles in the lab, exposing some to VPA during the key window of time for development of the optic tectum, a critical part of the brain for sensory processing. He also measured differences in the activity levels and excitability of the circuits and the individual cells that make them up. To assess behaviors, co-corresponding author Arseny Khakhalin, a former postdoctoral associate in the Aizenman lab who is now at Bard College, devised a series of tests. Since performing these studies, James has continued to study the underlying biology of VPA’s effects on neural development.

In addition, the tadpole model provides scientists with a way to gain important insight into the development of neurodevelopmental disorders more broadly, Aizenman said.
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EpilepsyU has dynamic content, like LIVE interactive Webinars, and a backlog of recordings from past webinars. EpilepsyU is a community run by the Epilepsy Association of Central Florida and partially funded by the Florida Department of Health. Strattera, whose chemical name is atomoxetine, appears to pose a greater risk than methylphenidate products, the FDA said. Babies whose mothers take the epilepsy drug valporic acid (VPA) during pregnancy, for example, appear to have an elevated risk of developing an autism spectrum disorder. To connect with other neurons into circuits, neurons grow long branch-like structures called axons and dendrites.
Neurons in the brains of VPA tadpoles showed increases in the frequency of both excitatory and inhibitory neural activity compared to those of the controls.
He and the team assessed whether VPA-exposed and normal tadpoles showed differences in how they schooled (like fish), avoided apparent collisions, tolerated startling noises, and became susceptible to seizures. He’s seen that VPA exposure significantly affects gene expression in developing tadpoles (the drug is known to affect how DNA is opened up to expression). In prior work, for instance, his lab looked at the neural and behavioral effects of a cosmetics chemical.

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In a new study, scientists who developed a tadpole model of this exposure directly observed deleterious effects on brain physiology and behavior. The dendrites of VPA-exposed tadpoles grew and branched abnormally according to his measurements, perhaps reflecting differences in how the tectum circuits were becoming wired during the VPA-exposed development. His hope is to identify and possibly block the altered expression that may be causing the improper neural development.
Over time, studies such as these may reveal patterns in the mechanisms by which exposures during development alter the nervous system. Understanding that connection could provide scientists with the opportunity to discover how to stop it.
The results all appeared consistent with an overgrowth of neural connections without the usual pruning back, or refinement, of connections that characterizes normal maturation in the brain.
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