04 janvier 2007

Les Israéliens possèdent 10% de la Lune

JERUSALEM (AFP) - Les Israéliens possèdent 10% des terrains mis en vente à titre privé sur la Lune, selon le porte-parole d'une société spécialisée dans ce type de transactions cité jeudi par le quotidien Jerusalem Post.
"Certains Israéliens pensent qu'un terrain sur la Lune est un cadeau original et un bon investissement, dont leurs petits enfants pourront tirer profit", a affirmé au journal Tom Wegner de la société Crasyshop.

Selon lui, quelque 10.000 Israéliens se sont portés acquéreurs de terrains sur la Lune depuis que c'est devenu possible en 2000 et possèdent environ 10% des quelque 40 millions de km2 déjà vendus à travers le monde. Toujours selon la même source, les prix, actuellement relativement accessibles (60 dollars le demi hectare), risquent de s'envoler parallèlement aux progrès du programme spatial des Etats-Unis.

La question demeure de savoir qui est le propriétaire précédent qui leur a vendu le lopin de Lune qu'ils ont acheté ?

Study: Praying online helps cancer patients

MADISON - Breast cancer patients who pray in online support groups can obtain mental health benefits, according to a new study conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center of Excellence in Cancer Communications Research that was funded by the National Cancer Institute.

"We know that many cancer patients pray in online support groups to help them cope with their illness. This is the first study we are aware of that examines the psychological effects of this behavior," says Bret Shaw, an associate scientist in UW-Madison's College of Engineering and lead author of the study.

The analysis was conducted on message transcripts from 97 breast cancer patients participating in an online support group that was integrated with the Comprehensive Health Enhancement Support System (CHESS) "Living with Breast Cancer" program, a computer-based health education and support system. The patients were recruited from Wisconsin and Michigan.

Surveys were administered before group access, then again four months later. Text messages within the computer-mediated support groups were analyzed using a text analysis program, which measured the percentage of words that were suggestive of religious belief and practice (e.g., pray, worship, faith, holy, God). Writing a higher percentage of these religious words within the online support groups was associated with lower levels of negative emotions and higher levels of self-efficacy and functional well-being, even after controlling for patients' pre-test levels of religious beliefs.

"From a psychological standpoint, there are a variety of reasons why cancer patients may benefit from prayer - whether on the Internet or elsewhere. In reviewing the messages, some of the most common ways study participants used religion to cope with their illness included putting trust in God about the course of their illness and consequently feeling less stressed, believing in an afterlife and therefore being less afraid of death, finding blessings in their lives and appraising their cancer experience in a more constructive religious light," says Shaw.


The results of the study are published in an advance issue of the journal PsychoOncology.

Encore une étude douteuse dans le camp de la prière intercessionnelle. On remarque que les effets supposés sont du domaine du stress qui, comme la douleur physique est un des domaines privilégiés du placebo. Pas de double-aveugle ni de groupe placebo. Voila qui classera cette étude dans le bas du tableau de la qualité.

Jury still out on fish oil for depression

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Though some research has suggested that fish oil may fight depression, the evidence from clinical trials is too mixed to draw any conclusions, according to a new research review.

In an analysis of 12 recent clinical trials, British researchers found little evidence that omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) improved participants' depression.

In general, they report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the studies were small, short-term and had substantial differences in their methodology that make it hard to draw firm conclusions.

One problem is that the trials included a wide range of patients, according to Dr. Katherine M. Appleton and her colleagues at the University of Bristol. Some studies examined adults with major depression, while others focused on bipolar disorder. Some assessed depression in people with other disorders, such as chronic fatigue syndrome or obsessive-compulsive disorder.

In addition, the treatment type and doses varied widely. In some studies, participants took omega-3 supplements along with their standard therapy, while other studies used only the supplements. One study looked at the effects of eating fish.

"Trial evidence that examines the effects of omega-3 PUFAs on depressed mood is limited and is difficult to summarize and evaluate because of considerable heterogeneity," Appleton and her colleagues write.

What evidence there is, they conclude, offers "little support" for using fish oil to fight depression.

In theory, omega-3 fats could affect depression symptoms through their action in the brain. Several studies have suggested the fatty acids aid in the function of certain chemical messengers in the brain that are linked to depression.

In addition, some population studies have found that people who regularly eat fish have a relatively lower risk of depression.

However, the promise from studies like these is not always duplicated in clinical trials, where researchers rigorously test a treatment against a placebo, or inactive treatment.

According to Appleton's team, larger, well-conducted clinical trials of fish oil for depression are still needed.

SOURCE: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, December 2006.