Minerva

Minerva

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.325.7371.1046 (Published 02 November 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:1046

Humans may have two nostrils, but these don't necessarily share the same sense of smell. Elusive scents may be detected by one nostril but not the other. According to a brief communication in Nature(2002;419:802) individual nostrils that are initially non-detectors can be trained through repeated exposure to pick up unusual odours. This implies that although separate nerve supplies connect the nostrils to the brain, there must be some exchange of information going on in the brain's olfactory centre.

Myocardial injuries commonly happen when coronary stents are inserted. The extent of the damage depends on local platelet aggregation, inflammation, and increased oxidative stress. Since statins have an effect on these elements, in addition to their lipid lowering effects, cardiologists tested the idea that giving a statin before carrying out stenting procedures might reduce the extent of myocardial damage (Circulation 2002;106:2180-3). Giving statins before the procedure was associated in this small study with a reduced incidence of larger infarctions related to stenting.

Some people believe that impaired circulation of cerebrospinal fluid has a role in the high incidence of Alzheimer's disease in elderly people, by encouraging the deposition of amyloid and tau protein in the brain. Draining cerebrospinal fluid may sound a bit far fetched …

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