Effectiveness of Physical Therapy for Back Pain

Julie Fritz, PhD, and colleagues have conducted a series of rigorous randomized clinical trials examining patients with acute back pain, back pain accompanied by sciatica, and back pain due to spinal stenosis. Their recent study found that patients with back pain and sciatica who were referred to physical therapy for treatment with exercise and manual therapy were more likely to rate their treatment as successful and reported significantly greater reductions in pain and disability than patients who were not referred. Continue reading → Effectiveness of Physical Therapy for Back Pain

Lipid Metabolism and Cardiometabolic Disease

Metabolic diseases such as diabetes, steatohepatitis, and coronary artery disease result from the delivery of nutrients that exceed a tissue’s energetic needs or storage capacity. The excess nutrients give rise to deleterious lipid species that impair cellular function. Summers and colleagues found that ceramides, a class of sphingolipids, alter the metabolism of liver and adipose tissue in a way that gives rise to cardiometabolic disease. Continue reading → Lipid Metabolism and Cardiometabolic Disease

Biological Consequences of Reduced Energy Flux and Inefficient Energy Generation

Energy transfer processes are never perfectly efficient. Funai and colleagues have discovered that the degree of inefficiency in cellular energy exchange, particularly during oxidative phosphorylation, has important biological implications. Continue reading → Biological Consequences of Reduced Energy Flux and Inefficient Energy Generation

Age-Related Sarcopenia and Recovery Following Muscle Disuse

Aging coincides with frequent periods of muscle disuse and, when combined with subsequent poor muscle recovery, contributes to sarcopenia, loss of muscle during aging. In order to develop effective interventions to offset deficits in muscle mass and function, Micah Drummond, PhD, and colleagues studied the cellular and molecular events that accompany muscle disuse in older adults. Continue reading → Age-Related Sarcopenia and Recovery Following Muscle Disuse