GEN Highlights

  • Cleveland Clinic and Brooks Automation Prepare to Build New Biobanking Facility (2018/05/21 12:14)
    The Cleveland Clinic and Brooks Automation say they will launch a 21,000-square-foot biorepository in Cleveland’s Fairfax neighborhood to improve researchers’ study of human tissue samples and advance personalized medicine. The facility will increase Cleveland Clinic’s existing biobanking capacity and is expected to accelerate translational research through streamlined patient consent processes and centralized storage. “This new biorepository will be a critical resource for our scientists. Biobanking is essential for the evolution of personalized medicine. The ability to properly manage biological specimens and to compare diseased tissues side-by-side with healthy tissues, is essential to understanding the biological basis of a disease,” said Serpil Erzurum, M.D., chair of Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute. “As a leading healthcare organization, this provides an unparalleled opportunity to advance understanding of many different diseases, enabling us to make discoveries that are directly benefitting our patients.” The two-story building will be located on the Cleveland Clinic’s campus and is scheduled to be completed ...
  • IL-26 Offers New Therapeutic Target for Chronic Smokers with Lung Disease (2018/05/21 11:56)
    Scientists report that immune signaling protein interleukin (IL)-26 is increased among chronic smokers with lung disease and that this finding offers new opportunities for developing more effective therapy for these patients.  Chronic tobacco smokers have a substantially increased rate of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic bronchitis, and bacterial lung infections and these disorders respond poorly to currently available therapies. This is thought to be associated with the accumulation neutrophils in their airways. Karlhans Fru Che, Ph.D., and Anders Lindén, M.D., Ph.D., from the Karolinska Institute, led a team of researchers from universities in Sweden and Finland to investigate why chronic smokers with lung disease have such high levels of neutrophils. They found that levels of IL-26 are higher in the lungs of these patients. The molecule is thought to be a pro-inflammatory neutrophil mobilizer and has previously been found at high concentrations in patients with autoimmune ...
  • Janssen Halts Clinical Studies of Alzheimer's Candidate (2018/05/18 14:40)
    Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Biotech said it will halt two clinical studies assessing its Alzheimer’s disease candidate atabecestat (JNJ-54861911), citing an unfavorable risk–benefit profile for the β-site amyloid precursor protein-cleaving enzyme (BACE) inhibitor. Janssen said it will stop screening, randomization, and dosing of atabecestat in its Phase IIb/III EARLY trial ( NCT02569398 ) assessing the drug in late-onset preclinical-stage Alzheimer’s, as well as in a Phase II European long-term safety study ( EudraCT Number 2014-004274-41 ). Both studies began in 2015, with the EARLY trial having an estimated primary completion date of April 10, 2024. “Elevations of liver enzymes, which were serious in nature, have been observed in some study participants who received the Janssen BACE inhibitor, atabecestat,” Janssen said in a statement last night. “After a thorough evaluation of all available liver safety data from our studies, Janssen has concluded that the benefit–risk ratio is ...
  • Mosquito Spit Disturbs Human Immune Cells for Days (2018/05/18 14:30)
    When mosquitoes take a blood meal, they deposit saliva into their host’s skin, provoking an immune response even in the absence of pathogens. The saliva alone, because of the proteins it contains, causes cytokine levels in the blood to rise, while altering the size of immune cell subpopulations. Such changes have been observed in studies with mouse models, but a new study goes a bit further. It describes the effects of mosquito bites on human immune cells in mice engrafted with human hematopoietic stem cells. The new study, from scientists based at Baylor College of Medicine, shows that the number of immune cell types affected is much larger than previously described, and that some immune responses to mosquito bites can be detected up until seven days post-bite. Although these findings are of uncertain biological significance, they could complement findings from earlier studies that mosquito saliva enhances the ...
  • Amgen, Novartis Set to Launch Migraine Drug Aimovig Next Week after FDA Approval (2018/05/18 14:07)
    Amgen and Novartis are set to commercially launch the first calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) receptor inhibitor in the U.S. next week following FDA approval yesterday of the companies’ co-marketed migraine prevention treatment Aimovig™ (erenumab). Aimovig will be the first-and-only monoclonal antibody specifically designed to prevent migraines by blocking the CGRP receptor believed to play a causal role in migraine pathophysiology. Aimovig has been projected by Evaluate Pharma to generate about $475 million in sales by 2022. Aimovig is expected to be available to patients in the U.S. within a week, Amgen and Novartis said. “We look forward to working closely with Amgen in the U.S. to bring this treatment to physicians and their patients, who could now gain days of their lives back each month,” Paul Hudson, CEO of Novartis Pharmaceuticals, said in a statement. In Europe, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) is reviewing a ...
  • IBD Triggered by Gut Microbes and Dietary Compounds (2018/05/18 13:04)
    Researchers in the U.S. and U.K. have uncovered a link between an antimicrobial toxin that is produced by common gut bacteria to fend off their rivals and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The studies more broadly discovered that, in addition to the well-studied microbial toxin microcin B17, structurally related compounds that are found in many foods and environmental sources can also directly trigger gastrointestinal inflammation by modifying the activity of CD1d, a major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecule. CD1d is found on intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) and hematopoietic cells, and functions to present lipid antigens to natural killer T cells (NKT). The research teams, led by Richard S. Blumberg, M.D., and Shankar S. Iyer, Ph.D., at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and by Tony Maxwell, Ph.D., at the John Innes Centre in the U.K., hope that their findings could led to the development of new treatments. “These ...
  • Signaling Pathways Linking Stem Cells and Macrophages May Play Role in Breast Cancer (2018/05/18 12:16)
    Scientists from the University of Pennsylvania say they have discovered a new signaling exchange that mediates normal mammary gland development by regulating the mammary stem cell niche, which was not previously understood. The finding indicates that mammary gland stem cells communicate with macrophages using Delta-like-ligand 1 (Dll1), which is part of the Notch signaling pathway. The team found that this molecular chatter is essential for the survival of the mammary stem cells, which leads to mammary gland development.  Because the Notch pathway and other molecular components of the communications between mammary stem cells and macrophages have been implicated in breast cancer genesis and spread, future research on the pathway in the context of cancer may bear crucial information for diagnosis and treatment. The current study (“ Notch Ligand Dll1 Mediates Cross-Talk between Mammary Stem Cells and the Macrophageal Niche ”) appears in Science . "The stem cell niche ...
  • NYC, NY State Promote Cluster-Building with $1B+ in Incentives, New Startup Spaces (2018/05/17 14:40)
    With more than $1 billion set aside for incentives, new early-stage spaces opening, and a shared commitment to industry-building despite political differences, New York City and New York State are finally poised to emerge as top-tier biopharma meccas after years of lagging behind Boston/Cambridge, MA, and the San Francisco Bay Area, key stakeholders in and outside government agree. Today at 4 p.m. ET is the deadline set by the New York City Economic Development Corp. (NYCEDC) for receiving responses to its “Request for Expressions of Interest” (registration required ) for a $100 million “Applied Life Sciences Hub.” The Hub would be the centerpiece of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D)’s LifeSci NYC , a 10-year, $500 million effort to make the Big Apple big in biopharma, with 16,000 new life sciences jobs and up to 3 million square feet of new space for life-sci companies ...
  • Marijuana Constituent Significantly Reduces Severe Epileptic Seizures (2018/05/17 14:31)
    The psychotropic effects of cannabis may be what the historically maligned drug is best known for, yet in recent decades a growing body of evidence continues to suggest that the drug has numerous valuable properties that make it a potentially valuable therapeutic. Now, investigators from NYU School of Medicine have shown in a new large-scale, randomized, controlled trial that cannabidiol (CBD)—a compound derived from the cannabis plant that does not produce a "high"—significantly reduces the number of dangerous seizures in patients with a severe form of epilepsy called Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Findings from the new study were published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine , in an article entitled “ Effect of Cannabidiol on Drop Seizures in the Lennox–Gastaut Syndrome .” "This new study adds rigorous evidence of cannabidiol's effectiveness in reducing seizure burden in a severe form of epilepsy and, importantly, is the first study of ...
  • Gut Microbe Byproducts May Cool Brain Inflammation (2018/05/17 14:30)
    Neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis may be worsened by proinflammatory astrocyte neurotoxins, which may be more plentiful if astrocytes are exposed to certain microglia secretions, which may be promoted—or limited—by metabolites produced by gut microbes. This chain of events, which was uncovered by scientists based at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BMH), contains links that could be weakened or reinforced. Perhaps the most intriguing link is near the start of the chain. This link, which consists of gut microbes capable of releasing inflammation-limiting metabolites, could lead to new therapies for multiple sclerosis and other neurological disorders. The BWH team recently reported that it has identified “positive and negative regulators that mediate the microglial control of astrocytes.” Details appeared May 16 in the journal Nature , in an article entitled “ Microglial Control of Astrocytes in Response to Microbial Metabolites .” The new research focuses on the influence ...

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  • FDA approves preventive migraine treatment
    FDA approves preventive migraine treatment  kfor.com Aimovig: New migraine prevention drug approved by FDA  WPXI Pittsburgh New drug that claims to prevent chronic migraines wins US approval  WDBJ7 Migraine | MedlinePlus  MedlinePlus FDA approves novel preventive treatment for migraine  FDA.gov Full coverage
  • Watching but not treating cancer can be hard. Sometimes it's the right approach.
    Watching but not treating cancer can be hard. Sometimes it's the right approach.  Washington Post Fewer men undergoing prostate cancer screening, treatment  Healio Doctors Are Convincing More Men With Low-Risk Prostate Cancer To Reject Aggressive Treatment: Study  Tech Times Full coverage
  • Porn Industry Group Schools Trump On The Difference Between HPV And HIV
    Porn Industry Group Schools Trump On The Difference Between HPV And HIV  HuffPost Why Trump should be intimately acquainted with both HIV and HPV  Quartz Bill Gates: Trump did not know difference between HIV and HPV  Brinkwire (press release) Full coverage
  • Heroin-Fueled Father Drives Kids, Rampages Through Neighborhood Before Passing Out And Crashing
    Heroin-Fueled Father Drives Kids, Rampages Through Neighborhood Before Passing Out And Crashing  The Daily Caller The dangers of fentanyl  WV News Fentanyl Detector could be new weapon in Opiate war  Your News Now Full coverage
  • 'Immune broth': California tests food as medicine
    'Immune broth': California tests food as medicine  Santa Fe New Mexican This State Is Now Prescribing Food As Medicine—And It's Working  Simplemost California rebukes Trump with health care push for immigrants  Politico Full coverage
  • Artificial intelligence can be weapon in cancer fight, PM to say
    Artificial intelligence can be weapon in cancer fight, PM to say  BBC News May calls on health, tech sectors to work on cancer  Reuters Artificial Intelligence May Help Prevent Thousands Of Cancer Deaths Per Year By 2033: UK PM Pledges Funding  Tech Times May to pledge millions to AI research assisting early cancer diagnosis  The Guardian No, Theresa May is not going to cure cancer whatever she'd like you to think  Mirror.co.uk Full coverage
  • New technique allows researchers to control heart cells growing in a dish
    New technique allows researchers to control heart cells growing in a dish  News-Medical.net Lab-grown heart cells operated by remote control  Business Standard Researchers Operate Lab-Grown Heart Cells By Remote Control  Photonics Online Full coverage
  • Larger waistlines are linked to higher risk of vitamin D deficiency
    Larger waistlines are linked to higher risk of vitamin D deficiency  Medical Xpress Belly fat linked to vitamin D deficiency  Medical News Today Vitamin B deficiency can influence belly fat levels: study reveals  JBH News Full coverage
  • Unnecessary and accidental use of ADHD drugs increases over 60%, study suggests
    Unnecessary and accidental use of ADHD drugs increases over 60%, study suggests  CNN Rise In Accidental Or Unnecessary Exposure Of ADHD Drugs Among Children, Teenagers  Medical Daily Poison control centers see increase in pediatric ADHD medication exposures  Healio Full coverage
  • Organ donations in the US are soaring amid the worsening opioid crisis
    Organ donations in the US are soaring amid the worsening opioid crisis  Verdict 'Look to TN for guidance on organ transplantation'  Times of India Full coverage
  • Patients lose hip replacement court case
    Patients lose hip replacement court case  BBC News Hundreds of patients lose battle over allegedly 'defective' hip implants  Telegraph.co.uk Full coverage
  • How Much Exercise Will Keep Your Heart Healthy? Scientists May Have the Answer
    How Much Exercise Will Keep Your Heart Healthy? Scientists May Have the Answer  Newsweek Exercise to stay young: 4-5 days a week to slow down your heart's aging  Medical Xpress Exercising 4 to 5 days a week slows heart aging: study  CTV News Full coverage
  • Nipah virus kills at least three in India, sparks alert
    Nipah virus kills at least three in India, sparks alert  Yahoo News Medical teams sent to south India amid deadly virus outbreak  Washington Post Deadly virus identified as a potential epidemic kills nine in India  CNBC Nipah virus leaves Kerala public health officials in state of disarray as casualty figure touches ten in 48 hours  Firstpost Kerala Nipah outbreak LIVE UPDATES: Disease control team arrives in Kozhikode as virus claims six lives  The Indian Express Full coverage
  • Ticks and mosquitoes bringing more diseases – what can we do?
    Ticks and mosquitoes bringing more diseases – what can we do?  San Francisco Chronicle Tick/Lyme diseases combating efforts get new New York push  Poughkeepsie Journal UCSF: Lyme Disease is On the Rise – An Expert Explains Why  Sierra Sun Times Full coverage
  • Celebrities Are Obsessed with the Keto Diet. Why You Shouldn't Be.
    Celebrities Are Obsessed with the Keto Diet. Why You Shouldn't Be.  Live Science Fast Weight Loss Diet With The 2 Week Diet System, Brian Flatts' Science Based Weight Loss Diet Program  GlobeNewswire (press release) Small benefit of diet doesn't add up  The Steubenville Herald-Star Full coverage
  • Wasting disease hits 16 percent of male deer, elk, moose tested in parts of Colorado
    Wasting disease hits 16 percent of male deer, elk, moose tested in parts of Colorado  The Denver Post New York State: DEC releases final plan to minimize risk of Chronic Wasting Disease for deer and moose herds  Morning Times Full coverage
  • Nurse Dead in Congo as Ebola Vaccination Campaign Starts
    Nurse Dead in Congo as Ebola Vaccination Campaign Starts  U.S. News & World Report First Ebola vaccines given as WHO seeks to beat Congo outbreak  Reuters Ebola Vaccine Arrives in Democratic Republic of Congo  Wall Street Journal The quiet return of Ebola. It's an emergency  gulfnews.com Why Ebola keeps coming back  The Standard Full coverage
  • Research Finds How Long-Term Social Isolation Changes The Brain
    Research Finds How Long-Term Social Isolation Changes The Brain  Tech Times How social isolation may increase stress  Times of India Staying isolated for prolonged periods can increase stress and fear: study  The TeCake Full coverage
  • New mental health care model creates a team to support both the patient's mind and body
    New mental health care model creates a team to support both the patient's mind and body  Denver Business Journal Doctor: Depressed women should focus on self-care  KTAR.com Understanding mental health and mental illness  Press of Atlantic City Will my children inherit my mental illness? Here's what the studies say  Metro Full coverage
  • Study Says Tinder Users Don't Have More Casual Sex Than Nonusers
    Study Says Tinder Users Don't Have More Casual Sex Than Nonusers  Tech Times Men Use Dating Apps for Casual Sex More Than Women  MedicalResearch.com (blog) If You Think Using Dating Apps Means More Sex, You're Wrong  Refinery29 Study: No One Is Having Sex on Tinder  Gizmodo People are more honest on Tinder than you may think, study says  The Star Online Full coverage