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  • March 24, 2013
  • 02:00 PM

Unraveling the molecular roots of Down syndrome

by Heather Buschman, Ph.D. in Beaker

Researchers discover that the extra chromosome inherited in Down syndrome impairs learning and memory because it leads to low levels of SNX27 protein in the brain.... Read more »

  • March 23, 2013
  • 05:00 PM

Do running shoes weaken muscles?

by Craig Payne in Running Research Junkie

We have all seen the claims on blogs, in articles and on places like You Tube that running shoes weaken muscles and that is why we should not be using the big bulky motion controlling running shoes. The claims are made quite regularly and with a certain amount of assertiveness that you would have to believe that those making the claims actually have some evidence to back up the claims, but they don’t.... Read more »

  • March 22, 2013
  • 01:22 PM

Researchers use menstrual blood stem cells to treat heart failure

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

Medistem, announced today via a press release that it has updated the paper regarding its Phase II clinical trial on patients with heart failure. Purpose of the trial is to assess the safety and efficacy of Medistem's proprietary type of stem cell called  "Endometrial Regenerative Cell" (ERC).Full Story... Read more »

Bockeria, L., Bogin, V., Bockeria, O., Le, T., Alekyan, B., Woods, E., Brown, A., Ichim, T., & Patel, A. (2013) Endometrial regenerative cells for treatment of heart failure: a new stem cell enters the clinic. Journal of Translational Medicine, 11(1), 56. DOI: 10.1186/1479-5876-11-56  

  • March 22, 2013
  • 10:08 AM

New technique allows researchers to grow hematopoietic stem cells "on an industrial scale"

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

A team of researchers from the Weill Medical College of Cornell University and the Memorial-Sloan Kettering Cancer Center has developed a new method to greatly expand, in the laboratory, the numbers of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) after they have been extracted from bone marrow tissue. The researchers say that their method is of great importance as it allows, like no other previously described, the mass production of MSCs for clinical use.Full Story... Read more »

  • March 22, 2013
  • 10:00 AM

Equipoise and Ethics and IRBs, Oh My!

by Rogue Medic in Rogue Medic

In the comments to what I wrote yesterday about seizures and a study comparing lorazepam (Ativan), diazepam (Valium), and placebo,[1] Brooks Walsh had the following comment –

"Although I’ve read the study before, I am only wondering now how the IRB for Alldredge 2001 thought there was 'equipoise' between placebo and benzos."... Read more »

Alldredge BK, Gelb AM, Isaacs SM, Corry MD, Allen F, Ulrich S, Gottwald MD, O’Neil N, Neuhaus JM, Segal MR, Lowenstein DH. (2001) A Comparison of Lorazepam, Diazepam, and Placebo for the Treatment of Out-of-Hospital Status Epilepticus. New England Journal of Medicine, 345(25), 1860-1860. DOI: 10.1056/NEJM200112203452521  

Callaway, C. (2012) Questioning the Use of Epinephrine to Treat Cardiac Arrest. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 307(11), 1198. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2012.313  

Hagihara A, Hasegawa M, Abe T, Nagata T, Wakata Y, Miyazaki S. (2012) Prehospital Epinephrine Use and Survival Among Patients With Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 307(11), 1161. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2012.294  

  • March 22, 2013
  • 05:52 AM

Advancing grandparental age and autism risk

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The paper by Emma Frans and colleagues* looking at autism risk across the generations is the focus of this post. Published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry alongside a provocative article by Andrea Roberts and colleagues** on maternal exposure to child abuse being "associated" with elevated risk for offspring autism (see here and here), the theme is transgenerational effects and quote: "that your father's and grandfather's lifestyle choices can affect you" as per some of media on this paper......... Read more »

  • March 22, 2013
  • 12:04 AM

Preseason Neck Pain and Headache: Concussion Predictor?

by Stephen Stache in Sports Medicine Research (SMR): In the Lab & In the Field

Take Home Message: Preseason neck pain and headache may be predictors for in season concussion among male youth hockey players.

Over the last few years, concussion has become one of the most common injuries among youth hockey players. Athletes have reported preseason neck pain, headache, and dizziness in recent concussion research, but it remains unclear if these symptoms predict who may be at risk for concussion. Consequently, in this prospective cohort study, Schneider et al. sought to det........ Read more »

  • March 21, 2013
  • 04:36 PM

Your Body’s Response to Chewing and Spitting: The Role of Insulin

by Shelly Fan in Science of Eating Disorders

In my previous post, I looked at two hormones released during the cephalic phase (gastric secretion that occurs before food is eaten), ghrelin and obestatin, and how they may contribute to runaway eating behavior. Today I’m going to be looking at insulin release during chew and spit (CHSP), a fairly common symptom in eating disorders where the food is tasted, chewed and spit out. Insulin is a small peptide hormone that acts as a key regulator of metabolism; deregulation of insulin signalling........ Read more »

  • March 21, 2013
  • 04:07 PM

LUMINEX xMAP Technology in Parasite Diagnostics

by Christen Rune Stensvold in Blastocystis Parasite Blog

Over the past few years nucleic acid based methods have revolutionised parasite diagnostics in modern clinical microbiology (CM) labs. Real-time PCR is really gaining a foothold in CM labs, but despite the opportunity for plexing, mostly only up to 6 DNA targets can be included in each assay (due to the number of available channels). LUMINEX xMAP technology is appealing due increasing opportunities but is still limited by probe-based detection.... Read more »

Taniuchi M, Verweij JJ, Sethabutr O, Bodhidatta L, Garcia L, Maro A, Kumburu H, Gratz J, Kibiki G, & Houpt ER. (2011) Multiplex polymerase chain reaction method to detect Cyclospora, Cystoisospora, and Microsporidia in stool samples. Diagnostic microbiology and infectious disease, 71(4), 386-90. PMID: 21982218  

  • March 21, 2013
  • 03:58 PM

New method to mass produce natural killer cells

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

A team of researchers, led by Dan Kaufman, released a study today in which they describe a new method for producing anti-cancer natural killer cells from embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells. Although this has been achieved in the past, the researchers say that their method produces way more cells than any other technique previously described.Full Story... Read more »

  • March 21, 2013
  • 01:50 PM

Dasatinib is safe but not effective against myelodysplastic syndrome

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

Researchers at Moffitt Cancer Center just announced the results of a phase II clinical trial on patients with with higher-risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), chronic myelomonocytic leukaemia, or acute myeloid leukaemia arising from MDS, who had previously failed to respond to conventional treatment (azanucleosides). Purpose of the trial was to assess the safety and efficacy of dasatinib in treating these conditions. The researchers say that although the drug won't help all patients, it does........ Read more »

  • March 21, 2013
  • 10:00 AM

Blogging as post-publication peer review: reasonable or unfair?

by Dorothy Bishop in bishopblog

In a previous blogpost, I criticized a recent paper claiming that playing action video games improved reading in dyslexics. In a series of comments below the blogpost, two of the authors have responded to my criticisms. I thank them for taking the trouble to spell out their views and giving readers the opportunity to see another point of view. I am, however, not persuaded by their arguments, which make two main points. First, that their study was not methodologically weak and so Current Biology ........ Read more »

Ioannidis JP, Pereira TV, & Horwitz RI. (2013) Emergence of large treatment effects from small trials--reply. JAMA : the journal of the American Medical Association, 309(8), 768-9. PMID: 23443435  

  • March 21, 2013
  • 05:02 AM

New method for monitoring injected stem cells

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

Researchers from the Stanford University Medical Centre have developed a new, highly sensitive imaging technique for delivering and monitoring stem cells, with the utmost precision, into the heart. The study has implications in the field of heart tissue regeneration while experimentation on humans is expected within the next 3-5 years.Full Story... Read more »

  • March 20, 2013
  • 01:00 PM

Suck It: The Ins and Outs of Mouth Pipetting

by Rebecca Kreston in BODY HORRORS

If you ever find yourself working in an infectious disease laboratory, whether it’s of the diagnostic or research variety, the overarching goal is not to put any microbes in your eye, an open wound or your mouth. Easy enough, right? Wear gloves, maybe goggles, work in fume hoods and don’t mouth pipette. When working with pathogenic bacteria and viruses, priority number one is Do Not Self-Inoculate.

Today our manual pipettes are rather sophisticated, plastic-y devices perfectly cal........ Read more »

  • March 20, 2013
  • 11:48 AM

Building “mini muscles” from stem cells

by Heather Buschman, Ph.D. in Beaker

Researchers discover that the protein BAF60C is necessary for generating "mini muscles" from stem cells.... Read more »

  • March 20, 2013
  • 09:26 AM

Allogeneic mesenchymal stem cells improve poor graft function

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

In a new study, conducted on humans, researchers from China show how mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can be used to treat poor graft function in patients that had previously received an allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant.Full Story... Read more »

  • March 20, 2013
  • 08:59 AM

1 in 50 children with parent-reported autism in the US

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

An estimated 1 in 50 US children aged between 6 - 17 years old present with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Attention-grabbing isn't it?Today's post is based on the source of that soundbite, the publication by Stephen Blumberg and colleagues* (open-access) describing results from data mining of the 2007 and 2011-2012 US National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH) relevant to the numbers of cases of ASD.Testing 1, 2, 3 @ Wikipedia  The autism-numbers game is something that has been d........ Read more »

Wilson, C., Gillan, N., Spain, D., Robertson, D., Roberts, G., Murphy, C., Maltezos, S., Zinkstok, J., Johnston, K., Dardani, C.... (2013) Comparison of ICD-10R, DSM-IV-TR and DSM-5 in an Adult Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnostic Clinic. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. DOI: 10.1007/s10803-013-1799-6  

  • March 20, 2013
  • 08:28 AM

Converting weeds into flowers: artificial stem cells create a blood supply for bioengineered organs

by Stephanie Swift in mmmbitesizescience

Regenerating the human body by growing whole new organs or patching up damaged ones from just a few cells scraped from your own tissues is a fascinating area of science known as bioengineering. Every living cell in such an organ … Continue reading →... Read more »

Margariti A, Winkler B, Karamariti E, Zampetaki A, Tsai TN, Baban D, Ragoussis J, Huang Y, Han JD, Zeng L.... (2012) Direct reprogramming of fibroblasts into endothelial cells capable of angiogenesis and reendothelialization in tissue-engineered vessels. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 109(34), 13793-8. PMID: 22869753  

  • March 20, 2013
  • 06:20 AM

New method for producing retinal cells from induced pluripotent stem cells

by beredim in Stem Cells Freak

Researchers at the Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) have developed a new technique for the production of human retinal cells using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) without involving any xenogeneic products, for instance animal proteins and foreign substances. Like any advance in the iPSCs field, the study has many implications as these cells can be used for regenerative purposes, disease modelling, and pharmacological screening.Full Story... Read more »

  • March 20, 2013
  • 12:04 AM

“Hip” to the Game of Football Groin Pain

by Nicole Cattano in Sports Medicine Research (SMR): In the Lab & In the Field

Take Home Message: High-level football players often have femoroacetabular impingement. Furthermore, cam-type deformities may be related to hip symptoms.

Femoracetabular impingement (FAI) is a common radiographic abnormality, particularly among high-level athletes (50 to 95% of athletes) but it remains unclear if FAI is related to symptoms or patient characteristics. Therefore the purpose of this study was to assess hip radiographic abnormalities (including FAI) among National Football Leagu........ Read more »

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