Beta carotene may increase cancer risk in smokers and drinkers

Smokers and drinkers who take beta-carotene supplements to help prevent cancer may actually increase their risk, new research finds. The study, led by Dartmouth Medical School (DMS), provides a cautionary perspective regarding the alleged cancer-fighting attributes of beta-carotene and other antioxidants. It is published in the May 21 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Clue to prion formation found, offers step toward treating puzzling diseases

Prions–their existence is intriguing and their links to disease are unsettling. These unconventional infectious agents are involved in mad cow disease and other fatal brain illnesses in humans and animals, rattling prior assumptions about the spread of infections. Dartmouth Medical School biochemists studying the mysteries of these prion particles have discovered a novel step in their formation. Their results, reported in a recent issue of Biochemistry could help provide a new approach for therapy against prion diseases. The team, headed by Dr. Surachai Supattapone, assistant professor of biochemistry and of medicine, includes Ralf Lucassen and Koren Nishina.