Losing your teeth linked to losing your mind

2 02 2011

A press release I recently wrote for BioMed Central’s open access journal Behavioral and Brain Functions has again hit the newstands. I can’t find an online archive of the original release I wrote, but some lazy journos have reproduced it verbatim, so I definitely know it’s mine!

The release describes a study from the Nara Medical University in Japan whereby elderly people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease were found to lose more teeth than those without the degenerative neurological disorder. Not only is this tooth loss associated with failing to remember to brush one’s teeth and a general poor state of hygiene, but gum disease may in fact accelerate dementia by affecting the sensory neurones in the gums, leading to the brain.

Read the original article in Behavioural and Brain Functions: Relationship of tooth loss to mild memory impairment and cognitive impairment: findings from the fujiwara-kyo study

Read some of the news articles using this press release:

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‘Mum! I’m hungry!’ Hungry chicks have unique calls to their parents

26 01 2011

Scientists studying Jackson’s Golden-Backed Weaver birds have discovered that not only can the parent birds identify their own chicks by the unique sound of their calls, but they can also tell if their chick is hungry, and how hungry.

A press release that I wrote for BioMed Central, following a study published in BMC Ecology, reveals that the more hungry a baby bird is, the more frenetic and unique the call becomes, so that parent birds not only know that they need to gather food for their young, but also how much.

Read the original article at BMC Ecology: The effect of hunger on the acoustic individuality in begging calls of a colonially breeding weaver bird

Read the press release I wrote at EurekAlert: ‘Mum! I’m hungry!’ Hungry chicks have unique calls to their parents

Read some of the press articles that used the press release:





DVT and pulmonary embolism linked to immune diseases

9 01 2011

Researchers at the University of Oxford have found that people with certain immune-related diseases such as type 1 diabetes, arthritis and lupus are much more likely to suffer complications due to vascular disease – even if they didnt have any cardiovascular problems before.

Having surgery and being laid up in bed increases the risk of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism anyway, largely because immobility reduces the circulation. Taking certain medications for other diseases might also affect blood flow. Even taking these factors into consideration however, immune disease sufferers still had a significantly greater chance of developing DVT and embolism.

Read the original article at BMC Medicine: Risk of venous thromboembolism in people admitted to hospital with selected immune-mediated diseases: record-linkage study

Read the press release I wrote about this article at BioMed Central: DVT and pulmonary embolism linked to immune diseases

Read some of the stories that used my press release:





LogoBee press releases

15 12 2010

LogoBee graphic and logo design agencyThe team at LogoBee, a Canadian logo design agency, recently approached me to write a selection of press releases to promote their new-look website. The press releases have now been published and I wish LogoBee every success with their ongoing development and growth!

Read the press releases here:

LogoBee logo design press release written by Lisa A. Martin freelance press release writer





Are white homosexual men still taking too many HIV risks?

9 09 2010

This controversial press release that I wrote for the open access journal BMC Infectious Diseases looks at a study carried out in Belgium in which researchers used genetic profiling to link “clusters” of people infected with the same strain of HIV. Their results showed that the largest clusters of HIV infection, i.e. those people who had all been infected by the same strain of the virus, indicating relationships between the people within the cluster, were made up of young, white, homosexual men. In other words, it seems that of all the people with HIV, it is this group who are most likely to infect others.

This findng points worryingly at the idea that despite education and the wide availability of barrier contraception, gay men – in Belgium at least – are still taking too many risks when it comes to their sexual behaviour.

Read the press release at EurekAlert: Are white homosexual men still taking too many HIV risks?

Read the original article at BMC Infectious Diseases: Epidemiological study of phylogenetic transmission clusters in a local HIV-1 epidemic reveals distinct differences between subtype B and non-B infections

And some of the media sources that picked up the story:





Ugly Betty forced to aim for Average Joe

27 08 2010

In my latest foray into the world of PR for the BioMed Central Press Office, this sweetly tragic little PR tells of research into the sexual selection behaviours of the humble house sparrow. Whereas many little girls dream of one day meeting their Prince Charming or being swept off their feet by a knight in the proverbial shining armour, the common house sparrow is apparently none too fussed, unless they happen to be a bit of a minger.

“Good quality” female house sparrows allegedly have no preference for the quality of males they mate with – in this version of survival of the fittest, as long as you’re the fittest bird in the ‘hood, it doesn’t matter what your man looks like! But according to this research from the Konrad Lorenz Institute for Ethology in Vienna, ugly female house sparrows don’t go getting ideas above their station – they’re happy to go for the attractive males as apparently, what they lack in good looks, they make up for in fatherhood skills. Ahhh…

Read the press release at EurekAlert: Ugly Betty forced to aim for Average Joe

Read the original article at BMC Evolutionary Biology: Only females in poor condition display a clear preference and prefer males with an average badge

Here’s some of the media sources that picked up on the story:





Sad mothers have small babies

26 08 2010

This press release that I wrote for BMC Public Health publicises research carried out in Bangladesh that finds it is not poverty, socieconomic status or nutrition levels that most contribute to the birth of underweight babies, but depression and other mental health issues in the mothers. This is the first time this result has been found in a non-Western country and provides an interesting insight into the role of mental health on physical health and child development, even in a country where, arguably, there are many other confounding factors that could be blamed for low birthweight.

Read the press release at EurekAlert: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-08/bc-smh082410.php

Read the full articles at BMC Public Health: Low birth weight in offspring of women with depressive and anxiety symptoms during pregnancy: results from a population based study in Bangladesh

And some of the media sources that picked up the story:








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