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Terrence Joyce C.

Avilla November 18, 2010

BSPT 1-1 ENGL 102

Antibody Linked to Allergies on the Rise

SATURDAY, Nov. 13 (HealthDay News) -- It's a common belief that as you get older,
your allergy symptoms will wane, but a new study suggests it's possible that even more older
people will be experiencing allergies than ever before.
In a nationally representative sample of people, researchers found that IgE antibody levels --
that's the immune system substance that triggers the release of histamine, which then causes
the symptoms of allergies like runny nose and watery eyes -- have more than doubled in
people older than 55 since the 1970s.
IgE levels don't always directly correlate with the presence of allergies or consistently
indicate their severity, but IgE is the main antibody involved in allergies, explained study author
Dr. Zachary Jacobs, a fellow in allergy and immunology at Children's Mercy Hospital and Clinic
in Kansas City, Mo.
"With IgE levels, it's hard to make an inference for a specific individual, but we're
reporting a population trend, and it looks like there's increased allergic sensitization. It looks
like Americans have more allergies now than they did 25 or 30 years ago," Jacobs said.
And, he added, "People in their 50s almost certainly have more allergy now than they
did 25 or 30 years ago, and more allergists will be needed for the baby boomers."
The findings are to be presented Saturday at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and
Immunology annual meeting, in Phoenix.
Jacobs and his colleagues noticed that no one had looked at levels of IgE in the
population since the 1970s, when a large study called the Tucson Epidemiological Study was
The new study compared data from the Tucson study in the '70s to data from the more
recent National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) from 2005 to 2006.
There were 7,398 people enrolled in NHANES, while the Tucson study included 2,743
people. The demographic profiles for the two studies were similar, although there were slightly
more young people (under 24) in the NHANES study.
IgE levels, which are measured with a blood test, however, were not always the same. The
Tucson study group had higher IgE levels in only one age group -- 6- to 14-year-olds. In all
other age groups, the NHANES participants had significantly higher IgE levels.
The difference was most striking in the older age groups. For example, in those aged 55
to 64, IgE levels among NHANES participants were more than double those of the Tucson
Jacobs said his researchers didn't think better testing methods could account for this
difference. If better tests were a factor, he said, the differences would have stayed the same
across the ages, but in the younger group, IgE levels were lower in the NHANES study
compared to the Tucson group.
Jacobs said there are numerous factors that could be at play, but all are hypotheses. He
said the "hygiene hypothesis" is a popular theory. The hygiene hypothesis essentially means
humans are now living in a world that's too clean, even wiping out good bacteria and leaving
the immune system to fight off only the most harmless of foreign substances. Another
possibility is the potential of global warming, which could be causing higher CO2 levels and
more pollen, theoretically contributing to the rise in allergic disease, he said.
Dr. Jennifer Appleyard is chief of allergy and immunology at St. John Hospital and
Medical Center in Detroit. She said: "The common wisdom is that IgE production typically
drops as you get older. So, to see a general trend like this is surprising."
"IgE reflects much more than just allergy. It can be affected by many things, like smoking,
parasitic diseases and eczema. So it's not just affected by or represented by allergy, and levels
of IgE aren't directly correlated with severity of disease. But this study's findings are
interesting, and definitely bear further evaluation," Apple yard added.

Gordon, S. (2010, November 13). Yahoo News. Retrieved November 14, 2010, from
Terrence Joyce C. Avilla November 18, 2010
BSPT 1-1 ENGL 102

Concern Over Traumatic Brain Injury In Youth Offenders

A new study of young offenders has revealed they have a significantly higher rate of
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) than that expected in society as a whole.
Researchers at the University of Exeter also found TBI was associated with a greater
number of convictions and, when there were three or more TBIs, greater violence in offending.
The research, published online on 10 November in the journal Neuropsychological
Rehabilitation, suggests brain injury must be taken seriously in the assessment and
management of offenders.
Professor Huw Williams, from the University of Exeter's School of Psychology and lead
author of the research, said: "This study shows that TBI is relatively common in offender
groups and that it may be associated with reoffending. However, we cannot know whether
brain injury per se increases likelihood of offending.
"There may well be underlying risk factors for TBI and offending behaviour. These could
include deprivation, lack of life opportunities, low concern for self-care, and even being a
person who 'takes risks'. A TBI may be a 'marker' for these other factors".

In the study, young male offenders aged 11 to 19 years were asked to complete self-
reports on head injury, crime history, mental health and drug use - with 197 participants (94%
of those asked) taking part.

Traumatic Brain Injury - an incident involving a blow to the head with a Loss of
Consciousness (LOC) - was reported by 46% of the sample. This is higher than estimates for
TBI in society as a whole of between 5% and 30% dependent on age group.

The main cause of injury in the young offenders was violence. In non-offending younger
people, injury typically occurs in falls or in sports.

In the study, repeat injury was common - with a third reporting being "knocked out"
more than once. Three or more TBIs were associated with greater violence in offences. Those
with self-reported TBI were also at risk of greater mental health problems and of misuse of

The research adds to another study published this year by Exeter researchers. Looking
at adult offenders in prison, the previous work also found much higher rates of TBI than
expected in society as a whole, with 60% claiming to have suffered aconcussion. Those who
said they had suffered a TBI were, on average, five years younger when they were first in
prison compared to non-injured -16-years-old compared to 21. They also reported higher rates
of repeat offending.

Professor Williams said it is already widely known that TBIs, particularly when there is
longer LOC, can lead to problems in attention, memory, planning and problems in behaviour,
for example, in anger management and impulse control. This research suggests it should be a
key consideration in enabling these young offenders to change their behavior.

Nordqvist, C. (2010, November 12). Medical News Today. Retrieved November 14, 2010,
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