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Discovery of shared biological properties among DNA variants may help identify new therapeutic targets

Discovery of shared biological properties among DNA variants may help identify new therapeutic targets

The discovery of shared biological properties among independent variants of DNA sequences offers the opportunity to broaden understanding of the biological basis of disease and identify new therapeutic targets, according to a collaboration between the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Arizona Health Sciences, and Vanderbilt University. The group published their findings this month in npj Genomic Medicine. [More]
New class of cancer-driver gene may serve as unique therapeutic targets, biomarkers in TNBC

New class of cancer-driver gene may serve as unique therapeutic targets, biomarkers in TNBC

The discovery of long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) has dramatically changed the understanding of the biology of diseases such as cancer. The human genome contains about 20,000 protein-coding genes - less than 2 percent of the total - but 70 percent of the genome is made into non-gene-encoding RNA. [More]
New fruit fly model study reveals metabolic pathway that can be targeted to treat FXS patients

New fruit fly model study reveals metabolic pathway that can be targeted to treat FXS patients

Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common genetically inherited cause of intellectual disability in humans. New research shows how the hormone insulin -- usually associated with diabetes -- is involved in the daily activity patterns and cognitive deficits in the fruitfly model of FXS, according to a new study from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania published online this month in Molecular Psychiatry in advance of the print issue. [More]
Derivatives of female sex hormones can influence natural melanin production, study suggests

Derivatives of female sex hormones can influence natural melanin production, study suggests

When skin cells responsible for pigmentation are exposed to estrogen or progesterone, the cells respond by adjusting their melanin production, resulting in either skin darkening or lightening. Although pregnant women often experience alterations in skin pigmentation, the reason for the changes has long puzzled physicians. [More]
New study explores factors that affect Medicare patient’s adherence to psoriasis biologic therapies

New study explores factors that affect Medicare patient’s adherence to psoriasis biologic therapies

About half of Medicare patients who start taking biologic therapies for moderate to severe plaque psoriasis stop within a year, according to a new study led by researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. [More]
Study shows canine AD shares significant features of human version

Study shows canine AD shares significant features of human version

Atopic dermatitis (AD), a chronic inflammatory skin condition and the most common form of eczema, is estimated to afflict as much as 10 percent of the U.S. population, and is much more common now than it was 50 years ago. Veterinary clinical estimates also show that approximately 10 percent of dogs have atopic dermatitis. [More]
Wellderly study finds link between cognitive decline genes and healthy aging

Wellderly study finds link between cognitive decline genes and healthy aging

An eight-year-long accrual and analysis of the whole genome sequences of healthy elderly people, or "Wellderly," has revealed a higher-than-normal presence of genetic variants offering protection from cognitive decline, researchers from the Scripps Translational Science Institute (STSI) reported today in the journal Cell. [More]
Microtubules affect mechanics of beating heart, study finds

Microtubules affect mechanics of beating heart, study finds

On top of the meaning and mystery that humans heap on the heart, it is first and foremost, a muscle. And one that beats about once a second for a person's entire life, with no rest. Given its vital importance, it's ironic researchers have only recently made direct observations of its subcellular parts in motion. [More]
New drug combination before surgery may improve outcomes in breast cancer patients

New drug combination before surgery may improve outcomes in breast cancer patients

Results from the I-SPY 2 trial show that giving patients with HER2-positive invasive breast cancer a combination of the drugs trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1) and pertuzumab before surgery was more beneficial than the combination of paclitaxel plus trastuzumab. [More]
Health systems rely on design thinking for management and innovation

Health systems rely on design thinking for management and innovation

Current health system practices are not sufficient to address growing rates of obesity and diabetes, health and economic disparities and cost control. "A Design Thinking Framework for Healthcare Management and Innovation" argues that addressing these complex challenges will require leaders that can think, and act, more like designers. [More]
Researchers identify biological pathway that explains why current asthma therapies fail in many cases

Researchers identify biological pathway that explains why current asthma therapies fail in many cases

Asthma is an enormous public health problem that continues to grow larger, in part because scientists don't fully understand how it is caused. Existing therapies don't cure the disease and often don't even significantly alleviate the symptoms. Now, scientists from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and Rutgers University have identified a biological pathway that potentially explains why current asthma therapies don't work well in many cases—and might be targeted to help those patients. [More]
Study shows women may face decreased kidney damage from ischemia reperfusion injury

Study shows women may face decreased kidney damage from ischemia reperfusion injury

After a kidney transplant, women may experience decreased kidney damage from ischemia reperfusion injury compared to men due to the impact of gender-specific hormones, suggests a new preclinical study and an analysis of patient data published online in the Journal of Clinical Investigation from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. [More]
Penn researchers report results of CAR therapy trial in brain cancer patients

Penn researchers report results of CAR therapy trial in brain cancer patients

Immune cells engineered to seek out and attack a type of deadly brain cancer known as glioblastoma (GBM) were found to have an acceptable safety profile and successfully migrate to and infiltrate tumors, researchers from Penn Medicine and Harvard University reported at the AACR Annual Meeting 2016. [More]
Physicians failing to talk to stroke patients about end-of-life treatment preferences

Physicians failing to talk to stroke patients about end-of-life treatment preferences

US research suggests that physician-patient discussion about limitations on life-sustaining interventions following ischaemic stroke is low, poorly documented and often left too late. [More]
Transcranial direct current stimulation can allow faster comprehension of meaningful word combinations

Transcranial direct current stimulation can allow faster comprehension of meaningful word combinations

How the human brain processes the words we hear and constructs complex concepts is still somewhat of a mystery to the neuroscience community. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) can alter our language processing, allowing for faster comprehension of meaningful word combinations, according to new research from the department of Neurology the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. The work is published in the Journal of Neuroscience. [More]
Penn researchers discover molecular mechanism that underlies common cerebrovascular disease

Penn researchers discover molecular mechanism that underlies common cerebrovascular disease

Cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs) are clusters of dilated, thin-walled blood vessels in the brain that can cause stroke and seizures, yet exactly how they form is somewhat of a mystery. Now, a team from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania has discovered the molecular mechanism that underlies this common cerebrovascular disease. They published their results this week online ahead of print in Nature. [More]
High out-of-pocket costs linked to lower use of specialty drugs

High out-of-pocket costs linked to lower use of specialty drugs

"Specialty drugs" have become important treatment options for many serious and chronic diseases, and in some conditions like cancer they represent the only chance for long-term survival. [More]
Cancer patients who choose home-based palliative care tend to live longer

Cancer patients who choose home-based palliative care tend to live longer

A large study from Japan found that cancer patients who died at home tended to live longer than those who died in hospitals. Published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, the findings suggest that oncologists should not hesitate to refer patients for home-based palliative care simply because less medical treatment may be provided. [More]
Meridian Health to debut first annual BuildingHOPE Benefit at Eagle Oaks Golf & Country Club

Meridian Health to debut first annual BuildingHOPE Benefit at Eagle Oaks Golf & Country Club

Meridian Health Foundation's first annual BuildingHOPE Benefit will take place on Friday, May 13, 2016 at Eagle Oaks Golf & Country Club in Farmingdale, NJ. The event, formerly known as the Sweetheart Ball for its February timeframe, has been moved to May and will benefit oncology research through Meridian Cancer Care. [More]
Restrictions to opioid prescription block their use for safe, effective pain relief

Restrictions to opioid prescription block their use for safe, effective pain relief

Opioids are very effective for treating some types of pain, such as cancer pain and postoperative pain, but not for other kinds of pain like chronic low back pain. An increase in the number of opioid-related deaths among addicts has led to the current movement to restrict opioid prescribing by state and federal authorities. [More]
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