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ADHD is a chronic condition including attention difficulty. Pixabay

In a bid to better identify symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children, researchers have vouched for adding computer simulations to cognitive testing methods, to gauge the presence and severity of behavioral problems in kids.

Cognitive testing in ADHD is used to identify a variety of symptoms and deficits, including selective attention, poor working memory, altered time perception, difficulties in maintaining attention, and impulsive behavior. According to researchers from Ohio State University, for ADHD, however, these cognitive tests often don’t capture the complexity of symptoms.


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The advent of computational psychiatry – comparing a computer-simulated model of normal brain processes to dysfunctional processes observed in tests – could be an important supplement to the diagnostic process for ADHD, the researchers reported in a new review published in the journal Psychological Bulletin.

Children with ADHD take longer to make decisions while performing tasks than children who don’t have the disorder, and tests have relied on average response times to explain the difference. But there are intricacies to that dysfunction that a computational model could help pinpoint, providing information clinicians, parents and teachers could use to make life easier for kids with ADHD.


Computer models to simulate the decision process. Pixabay

“We can use models to simulate the decision process and see how decision-making happens over time – and do a better job of figuring out why children with ADHD take longer to make decisions,” said Nadja Ging-Jehli, lead author of the review. The research team reviewed 50 studies of cognitive tests for ADHD and described how three common types of computational models could supplement these tests.

The researchers offer recommendations for testing and clinical practice to achieve three principal goals: better-characterizing ADHD and any accompanying mental health diagnoses such as anxiety and depression, improving treatment outcomes, and potentially predicting which children will “lose” the ADHD diagnosis as adults.

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The review also identified a complicating factor for ADHD research going forward — a broader range of externally evident symptoms as well as subtle characteristics that are hard to detect with the most common testing methods. Understanding that children with ADHD have so many biologically based differences suggests that a single task-based test is not sufficient to make a meaningful ADHD diagnosis, the researchers said.

“ADHD disorder is not only the child who is fidgeting and restless in a chair. It’s also the child who is inattentive because of daydreaming. Even though that child is more introverted and doesn’t express as many symptoms as a child with hyperactivity, that doesn’t mean that child doesn’t suffer,” Ging-Jehli elaborated. Daydreaming is especially common in girls, who are not enrolled in ADHD studies nearly as frequently as boys, she said. (IANS)


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Basil Leaves

Basil scientifically called Ocimum basilicum, and also known as great basil, is a culinary herb from the Lamiaceae (mints) family. A common aromatic herb, it is usually used to add flavor to a variety of recipes, but what may astonish one is that there are various health benefits of basil that make it well-known for its immunity-enhancing properties.

Basil seeds or basil essential oil are proven to help prevent a wide range of health conditions, which makes it one of the most essential medical herbs known today. Basil has vitamin A, C, E, K, and Omega 3 components including cooling components too. It also contains minerals like Copper, Calcium, Manganese, Phosphorus, Zinc, and Potassium. An ancient Ayurvedic herb, basil has various proven benefits including being anti-inflammatory, ant-oxidant, immune-booster, pain-reducer, and blood vessel-protector.

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This herb also contains cooling components thus making it really helpful for summers. It detoxifies the body and maintains one's body temperature pace. Adding to the benefits Basil contains antioxidant-rich volatile essential oils, which are considered hydrophobic, meaning they don't dissolve in water and are light and small enough to travel through the air and the pores within our skin. Basil's volatile essential oil is something that gives the herb its distinct smell and taste, but basil contains some great healing properties.

In the long history of Ayurveda, basil seeds were also called tukmaria seeds. These seeds may support one's gut health, may complete one's fiber quota, reduce blood sugar, help in weight loss, and also reduce cholesterol.

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When you're pregnant, the immune system is seeing the placenta for the first time in decades.

The US researchers have discovered a class of immune cells that plays a role in miscarriage, which affects about a quarter of pregnancies.

Researchers at the University of California-San Francisco found that the recently discovered subset of cells known as extrathymic Aire-expressing cells in the immune system may prevent the mother's immune system from attacking the placenta and fetus.

The researchers showed that pregnant mice who did not have this subset of cells were twice as likely to miscarry, and in many of these pregnancies fetal growth was severely restricted.

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"When you're pregnant, the immune system is seeing the placenta for the first time in decades -- not since the mother made a placenta when she herself was a fetus," said Eva Gillis-Buck, from UCSF.

"Our research suggests that this subset of immune cells is carrying out a sort of 'secondary education' -- sometimes many years after the better-known population of the educator cells have carried out the primary education in the thymus -- teaching T cells not to attack the fetus, the placenta and other tissues involved in pregnancy," she added. The findings are published in the journal Science Immunology.

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