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Entries for September 2014

 Does this world need more Angelina Jolies?
Divya Talwar, BDS, MPH
"In late summer, 2013, Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie, accompanied by her partner Brad Pitt, revealed at a press conference that she underwent a preventive double mastectomy due to a “faulty gene.”'

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Don't Want to Lose Muscle Mass While Dieting? Take BCAAs!
Vincent C.W. Chen, B.S.
"When eating less to reduce weight, it is hard not to lose some muscle mass. During dieting, the body struggles to keep sufficient energy stores, and therefore, it will break down muscle proteins to satisfy energy needs. While the basic equation for muscle mass is rate of protein synthesis subtracted rate of protein breakdown, decrease in muscle size will be observed if muscle protein breakdown is not prevented while on a calorie-deficit diet."

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For more information about this week’s Human Performance Minute, check out the links listed below. 
Be sure to check out future weekly Huffines Institute Human Performance Minute broadcasts at TexAgs Sports Radio (The Zone 1150 AM) every Wednesday morning at 10:45am. If you missed it you can listen to it here!

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Code Blue
John Seawright, B.S.
“Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, Rage against the dying of the light.” Dylan Thomas penned these anguished words as his once strong and youthful father lay aged, blind, and dying; words which paint an agonizing depiction of humanity’s struggle against and defiance of death. In today’s world, the endless rebellion against suffering and death is continued with a bellicose campaign against cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in the United States."

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Understanding mTOR: Great for Muscle, Bad for Cancer
Kevin Shimkus, B.S.
"In muscle research, we tend to pay a great deal of attention to a particular signaling protein called mTOR, a key regulatory protein that signals for cell growth through the creation of new proteins. Consider protein building similar to a race car. The larger the engine, the greater potential for speed. Similarly, the more mTOR protein present in any given cell, the greater potential for more protein construction. And just like the gas pedal fuels the engine, mTOR is a signaling protein, and can be various levels of active (like a pedal’s ability to regulate speed). If a number of different processes all signal for ‘Go’, then the cell builds as much protein as it can, as quickly as it can. So just as a souped-up car takes off rapidly, a muscle cell can signal for tremendous muscle growth very quickly, given the right conditions."

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