March 18, 2015   Vol. VI, Issue 11
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Predictors of continued playing or singing from childhood and adolescence to adult years.

It appears that male sex, young starting age, cultural family background, self-selected instrument, attending music classes more than once a week, church-related or private education, pop, rock or classical music, playing by ear and improvisation are all factors strongly associated with a child continuing to sing or play an instrument as an adult.


Acta Paedriatrica 

Epigenetics of autism-related impairment: Copy Number variation (CNV) and maternal infection.

"Epigenetics is the study of changes in organisms caused by modification of gene expression rather than the alteration of the genetic code itself". This may be mediated by "on" or "off" gene expression, modification of gene-associated proteins that may affect the way cells differentiate, &/or result in diseases like cancer. At least three systems including DNA methylation, histone modification and non-coding RNA-associated gene silencing are currently believed to initiate and sustain epigenetic changes. It occurs normally and can be influenced by age, environment/life style and disease state (e.g. immune activation from infection).


Copy Number variations (CNV) are a form of DNA structural variation where a relatively large region of the genome has been deleted or duplicated on certain chromosomes.


A study of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), their CNV's and a history of maternal fever/prenatal infection indicates that there appears to be a significant association between the presences of CNV in ASD children whose mother had a history of prenatal infection. The end result of these changes is poorer communication skills and repetitive/restrictive behavior.


Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics 



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Usual intake of added sugars and lipid profiles in US adolescents.


From an examination of data from 4,047 adolescents aged 12-19 years from a nationally representative cross-sectional survey, it appears that added sugars contribute an additional 16% more calories per day than normally consumed (many consuming and additional 25% of total energy intake). Added sugar appears inversely associated with high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels and directly associated with increased triglyceride levels.


Across sex, race, ethnicity and body mass index of adolescent subgroups dyslipidemia in significantly associated with the consumption of added sugars.


Journal of Adolescent Health 

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Treating Functional Abdominal Pain 
Treating Functional Abdominal Pain

Urinary tract infection (UTI) and chronic abdominal pain in childhood.


"Adverse early life events are key factors for development of functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGID)".


A study of 57 children (and their siblings as controls) 4-18 years of age with a history of a single UTI in the first year of life and surveyed at 9.7 years (Mean) indicates that 11% of such children (vs. 2% controls) present with FGID and 18% with chronic abdominal pain.


UTI in the first year of life appears to be associated with the subsequent development of chronic abdominal pain in children.


Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition 

Probiotic prophylaxis in infants with primary vesicoureteral reflux (VUR)  


A prospective randomized,  controlled trial utilizing probiotic (lactobacillus acidophilus) prophylaxis or trimethatome/sulfamethoxazole, in 128 primary VUR children (aged 1 week - 12 weeks) with recurring urinary tract infection (UTI) indicates that over one year follow up, no differences in the incidence of recurrent UTI, causative organism, resolution rate or development of renal scarring.


"Probiotics could be considered a natural alternative regimen for prophylaxis on infants with primary VUR".


Pediatric Nephrology 

Current research suggests that the future looks brighter for cerebral oxygenation monitoring in preterm infants.


Cerebral blood flow varies within a fairly wide range under differing physiological and pathophysiological states. Critical to the prevention of brain hypoxic ischemic injury (or hyperoxygenation) is the optimization of cerebral hemodynamics and the delivery of the appropriate amount of oxygen to the brain. In premature infants this can now apparently be achieved (four randomized controlled trials) by incorporating near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) monitoring in the NICU care of the very premature infant.


Acta Paediatrica 

Health status and quality of life (QoL) of long-term survivors of childhood acute leukemia (ALL); the impact of central nervous system irradiation (CNSI).


A study of data from 2004-2009 (630 non-grafted ALL children) assessed after 11.8 years from diagnosis, of whom 18.6% received CNSI or chemotherapy (81.4% ) alone, indicates that CNSI is associated with growth abnormalities, second tumors, cataracts or being overweight. QoL in children appears the same independent of the two types of treatment. Adult survivors have impaired QoL and poorer metal function.  


Journal Pediatric Hematology/Oncology 

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