Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, JAMA, Lung Cancer, Stanford, USPSTF / 24.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Summer S Han, PhD Assistant Professor Quantitative Sciences Unit Stanford Center for Biomedical Informatics Research (BMIR) Neurosurgery and Medicine Stanford University School of Medicine Stanford, CA 94304  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued their 2021 recommendation on lung cancer screening lowering the start age from 55 to 50 years and the minimum pack-year criterion from 30 to 20, relative to the 2013 recommendations. Although costs are expected to increase with the expanded screening eligibility, it is unknown if the new guidelines for lung cancer screening are cost-effective. (more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Pulmonary Disease, University of Pittsburgh / 22.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Stephen Chan, M.D., Ph.D. Professor of Medicine Director of the Vascular Medicine Institute at Pitt and UPMC MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a type of high blood pressure that occurs in the vessels that transport blood from the heart to the lungs. As the disease progresses and the heart must strain harder against these high pressures, it can lead to heart failure, multi-organ dysfunction and death. PH affects people of all ages but hits young women more often than men. Pulmonary hypertension is an example of a rare disease where there is an unmet need for new treatments, given its devastating consequences. Repurposing drugs that are already in use for other purposes can dramatically cut down the time and cost of developing treatments for rare diseases like PH. But a pipeline to predict and test for drugs in this way for PH and other rare diseases has not been described. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, Cost of Health Care, JAMA / 20.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anita Katharina Wagner, PharmD, MPH, DrPH Associate Professor of Population Medicine Director, Ethics Program, Point32Health (parent company of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and Tufts Health Plan) Co-Director, HMS Fellowship in Health Policy and Insurance Research Co-Director, Center for Cancer Policy and Program Evaluation (CarPE) Department of Population Medicine Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The expectation for new cancer drugs is that they help patients live better longer. Increasingly more cancer drugs are approved without documented quality of life or overall survival benefits.   At the same time, cancer drug prices are rising.  We studied use of and spending on selected new cancer drugs among patients with employer-sponsored health insurance. We found that among 37348 patients who received one or more of 44 oral targeted cancer drugs, the proportion of patients who received a drug without documented overall survival benefit increased from 13% in 2011 to 59% in 2018.  By 2018, spending on drugs without documented overall survival benefit accounted for 52% of the $3.5 million spend on the 44 drugs since 2011. (more…)
Author Interviews, Lyme, Race/Ethnic Diversity, UCLA / 18.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dan P. Ly M.D., Ph.D., M.P.P. Division of General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA Los Angeles, CA  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Lyme disease presents first on the skin with the classic “bull’s-eye” rash. But such rashes in Black patients aren’t well-represented in medical textbooks. This may lead to physicians not recognizing such rashes in Black patients. As a result, Black patients are more likely to present with later complications of Lyme disease when first diagnosed such as neurologic complications.   (more…)
Author Interviews, HIV, Infections, Vanderbilt / 02.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rachael Pellegrino, MD Vanderbilt University Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We know that HIV care and outcomes have dramatically improved over the last 20 years, but disparities still exist at each step of the HIV care continuum, which can ultimately lead to differences in mortality rates. In addition to assessing trends and disparities in mortality, we wanted to look at differences in premature mortality, which has not been widely studied in the HIV population in the US. This concept serves to emphasize and quantify the time lost by death at an early age as an important measurement of the impact of diseases and can expose disparities that are not apparent in the mortality rates alone. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Heart Disease, JAMA, Stroke / 30.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Daniel E. Singer, MD Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Professor in the Department of Epidemiology Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Division of General Internal Medicine Massachusetts General Hospital Boston, MA, 02114 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Atrial fibrillation (AF) raises the risk of ischemic stroke 4-5-fold and this risk is largely reversible by oral anticoagulants (OAC). These facts are part of the core knowledge of internal medicine and the basis of multiple guidelines. They are based on studies of patients with persistent or predominantly “heavy burden” paroxysmal AF completed in the 1990s. More recent studies using cardiac implantable devices (CIEDs: implantable defibrillators, pacemakers, etc) which have the capacity to monitor heart rhythm continuously have found that many older patients have brief, often undiagnosed, episodes of AF. Several of these studies have found that strokes occur during periods of sinus rhythm temporally distant from a preceding episode of AF. This has led to a widespread suspicion that AF is not a direct causal risk factor but a risk “marker” indicating the presence of other truly causal features like a diseased left atrium (atrial myopathy). If the risk marker hypothesis is correct, then long-term anticoagulation is needed even for brief and rare episodes of AF (assuming the patient’ s CHA2DS2-VASc score is high enough). The key problem with prior prospective studies using CIEDs was that only a small number of strokes were observed leading to inadequate statistical power. Our study addressed this power problem by linking the very large Optum electronic health record database which could identify ischemic strokes with the Medtronic CareLink database of long-term, continuous heart rhythm records of patients with CIEDs. We ended up studying 891 individuals who had an ischemic stroke and had 120 days of continuous heart monitoring prior to the stroke. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, JAMA, Kidney Disease, Transplantation / 27.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Joel T. Adler, MD, MPH Department of Surgery, Brigham and Women’s Hospital Center for Surgery and Public Health Brigham and Women’s Hospital Boston, Massachusetts  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: For patients who require renal replacement therapy for failed kidneys, kidney transplantation increased length of life and improves quality of life.  For many of these patients, their dialysis centers are the source of referral for evaluation for transplantation.  These dialysis centers have a number of publicly-reported quality measures, but they largely focus on the provision of dialysis care and not how often the centers’ patients undergo a kidney transplant.  Because these higher-rated facilities provide better dialysis care, we wanted to know if that benefit also spilled over into higher transplant listing rates. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Methamphetamine, NIH, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 24.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Beth Han, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H. Epidemiologist, Science Policy Branch of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), National Institutes of Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In the U.S., overdose deaths involving psychostimulants with abuse potential other than cocaine (i.e. largely methamphetamine), increased dramatically during the past decade. Psychostimulant-involved overdose deaths also often involved opioids (50% in 2017). However, it was still undetermined how trends in methamphetamine use among vulnerable populations and specific patterns of use [e.g. methamphetamine use with or without other substances, frequent methamphetamine use, methamphetamine use disorder (MUD), and injection] may contribute to greater risk for overdose mortality. Moreover, understanding characteristics that are associated with methamphetamine use, frequent use, MUD, and injection is of value in guiding strategies to address the root causes for the recent surge in methamphetamine overdose deaths. (more…)
Anesthesiology, Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Opiods, Surgical Research / 21.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Andres Zorrilla Vaca, MD Resident Physician Brigham and Women’s Hospital Boston, Massachusetts  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The background for this study was Enhanced Recovery After Surgery, also known as ERAS protocols. They basically consisted of a bundle of interventions that are performed preoperatively, intraoperatively and postoperatively with the aim of enhancing patient recovery and reducing complications. This protocol in our institution started with a thorough preoperative counseling which includes, smoking cessation, pain and analgesia education, ERAS program expectations, pulmonary rehabilitation based on pulmonary function tests and incentive spirometry. On the day of surgery, prolonged fasting is avoided and a carbohydrate loading is given orally 2 hours before surgery. Our protocol also included a standardized multimodal analgesic regimen consisting of tramadol ER 300mg p.o. and gabapentin 300mg p.o., intraoperative acetaminophen 1gm i.v., posterior intercostal nerve blockade with liposomal bupivacaine 266mg prior to incision, intraoperative 30mg ketorolac upon wound closure and scheduled postoperative acetaminophen 1g p.o. q 6hrs and ketorolac 15mg i.v. q 6 hrs, as well as additonal interventions recommended by ERAS Society Guidelines. As a general rule, preoperative sedatives (midazolam) are avoided as premedication and prophylaxis against nausea and vomiting (ondansetron, dexamethasone and scopolamine) is administered. Patients are kept euvolemic by using validated goal-directed fluid therapy algorithms (stroke volume variation and cardiac output) and normothermia is maintained throughout the procedure. (more…)
Author Interviews, Columbia, Emergency Care, JAMA, Pediatrics, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Yale / 17.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Destiny Tolliver, MD National Clinician Scholars Program Yale University School of Medicine New Haven, CT 06510-8088 Katherine Nash MD, MHS Assistant Professor of Pediatrics Columbia University Irving Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This study was motivated by work from our colleagues in the adult Emergency Medicine world. Earlier this year Dr. Ambrose Wong and colleagues published work describing racial disparities in the physical restraint of adults in the ED. This prompted our group to consider whether these disparities were also present for children. (more…)
Asthma, Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Circadian Rhythm, Occupational Health, PNAS, Pulmonary Disease, Sleep Disorders / 11.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Frank Scheer, PhD, MSc Professor and Director of the Medical Chronobiology Program Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders Brigham and Women’s Hospital Steve Shea, PhD Professor and Director Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: For hundreds of years, people have observed that asthma severity often worsens in the nighttime. As many as 75 percent of people with asthma—20 million people in the U.S.—report experiencing worsening asthma severity at night. One longstanding question has been to what degree the body’s internal circadian clock—as opposed to behaviors, such as sleep and physical activities—contributes to worsening of asthma severity. Our research used long term intensive monitoring throughout two circadian protocols in dim light and without time cues to carefully isolate the influence of the circadian system from the other factors that are behavioral and environmental, including sleep. (more…)
Author Interviews, NEJM, Stroke, University Texas / 08.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: James Grotta, MD Director of Stroke Research Clinical Institute for Research and Innovation Memorial Hermann - Texas Medical Center Director, Mobile Stroke Unit Consortium University of Texas Health  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We have good stroke treatments (thrombolysis and thrombectomy).  Since the initial studies showing benefit of thrombolysis, it has been difficult to improve on the amount of benefit except by speeding its delivery; the earlier the treatment, the better the outcome. Biologically, treatment in the first hour is likely to have greatest benefit since the brain is less irreversibly damaged and the clot is more soluble. But treatment in the first hour is rare if it is carried out in the emergency department.  So MSUs take the emergency department to the patient. We know that Mobile Stroke Units (MSUs) can speed treatment; our study addressed if this be accomplished in the US, and how much difference does it make in outcome.  In particular, outcomes important to patients given the probable costs of implementing MSUs.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, JAMA, OBGYNE, Pediatrics, Weight Research / 28.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Emily Oken MD MPH Professor, Harvard Medical School Professor in the Department of Population Medicine Associate Director and Advisor, Oliver Wendell Holmes Society. Professor, Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: In this study of over 11,000 mothers and children, we found that a mothers with higher weight in late pregnancy had children with poorer performance on tests of cognition and behavior in childhood and adolescence. The findings are consistent with results from studies in other populations around the world, as well as animal experiments.  This research suggests that maternal nutrition is important for child health over the long-term, and specifically provides support for mothers to try to achieve healthy weight and nutritional status during pregnancy. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, Immunotherapy, Kidney Disease, NEJM / 18.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Toni K. Choueiri, MD Director, Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology Director, Kidney Cancer Center Jerome and Nancy Kohlberg Chai Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The standard of care for patients diagnosed with locoregional RCC is partial or total nephrectomy. Nearly half of patients will eventually experience disease recurrence following nephrectomy and no standard, globally approved adjuvant therapy options are currently available for this population. The phase 3 KEYNOTE-564 study met its primary objective of demonstrating a statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvement in disease-free survival with pembrolizumab vs placebo as adjuvant therapy for patients with RCC post nephrectomy, supporting pembrolizumab as a potential new standard of care for patients at high risk of disease recurrence following surgery. (more…)
Author Interviews, Duke, JAMA, Nursing, Sexual Health, STD / 12.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Vincent Guilamo-Ramos, PhD MPH, LCSW, RN, ANP-BC, PMHNP-BC, AAHIVS, FAAN Vincent Guilamo-Ramos is dean and professor at the Duke University School of Nursing, vice chancellor for nursing affairs, Duke University, and director of the Center for Latino Adolescent and Family Health (CLAFH) at Duke. Dr. Guilamo-Ramos served as a member of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (National Academies) Committee on Prevention and Control of STIs in the U.S. that wrote the recent consensus study report. He also serves as a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) and the HHS Panel on Antiretroviral Guidelines for Adults and Adolescents. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (National Academies) recently released a consensus study report on prevention and control of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in the United States. The report entitled “Sexually Transmitted Infections: Adopting a Sexual Health Paradigm” includes a strong emphasis on adolescents and young adults as an important priority population for the response to record-level STI rates that have reached an all-time high for the sixth year in a row in 2019. The report also highlights the well-supported and crucial role of parents in addressing STIs and promoting sexual health among adolescents and young adults. In this new Viewpoint article, my co-authors and I, who contributed to the National Academies report as committee members or consultants, discuss the practical implications for health care professionals of engaging parents in adolescent sexual health services. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Smoking, Tobacco, Tobacco Research, UC Davis / 05.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: John Pierce, PhD Professor Emeritus Department of Family Medicine and Public Health Moores Cancer Center Director for Population Sciences Co-leader of the Cancer Prevention program UC San Diego MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Graphic Warning Labels are to be implemented in the US in July 2022, depending on litigation. This will be about 10 years after they were first proposed.  Meanwhile, 120 other countries have implemented them already. The FDA states that their purpose for the warnings is to provide a constant reminder to smokers about the health consequences of smoking, not to force them to quit. In our study, 3 months of having cigarettes repackaged into graphic warning packs was associated with smokers thinking more about quitting and not getting as much pleasure out of their cigarettes.  However, thinking about quitting is only the first step to conquering a nicotine addiction. (more…)
Author Interviews, Columbia, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Telemedicine / 29.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Steffie Woolhandler MD MPH, FACP Professor of Public health and Health Policy CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College Co-founder and board member Physicians for a National Health Program MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response:   We analzyed a national database of healthcare utilization. We found racial disparities exist in use of specialist MD services by Black- and Native-Americans relative to White-Americans, despite their greater needs.  Hispanic- and Asian-Americans also receive specialist care at low rates.   (more…)
Author Interviews, Cognitive Issues, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Imperial College, Lancet / 28.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Adam Hampshire PhD Faculty of Medicine Department of Brain Sciences Imperial College London MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: During 2020 I was leading a study that sought to map the distribution of cognitive abilities and aspects of mental health across the UK population. The study generated a lot of interest because it was a collaboration with BBC2 Horizon, leading to ~390,000 participants. When the pandemic began to escalate in the UK a number of my colleagues at Imperial and elsewhere contacted me to note that the study could be used to investigate the impact of both the pandemic and direct illness on daily life, mental health and cognition. I had been thinking along similar lines so decided to add questionnaires about peoples' experiences with the pandemic and Covid-19 illness. (more…)
Allergies, Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Vaccine Studies, Vanderbilt / 27.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kimberly G. Blumenthal, MD, MSc Massachusetts General Hospital The Mongan Institute Boston, MA 02114 Matthew S. Krantz, MD Division of Allergy, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: During the initial COVID-19 vaccine campaign with healthcare workers in December 2020, there was an unexpected higher than anticipated rate of immediate allergic reactions after Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines.  This prompted both patient and provider concerns, particularly in those with underlying allergic histories, on the associated risks for immediate allergic reactions with the mRNA vaccines. Because of the significantly improved effectiveness of two doses of an mRNA vaccine compared to one dose, it was important to determine if those who experienced immediate allergic reaction symptoms after their first dose could go on to tolerate a second dose safely.    (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Columbia / 27.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: George Hripcsak, MD, MS. Chair and Vivian Beaumont Allen Professor of Biomedical Informatics Department of Biomedical Informatics, Columbia University Irving Medical Center New York, NY MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: ACE inhibitors and ARBs are anti-hypertension drugs that have related yet distinct mechanisms of action, and they are both recommended as first-line therapies for treating hypertension. There have been no large head-to-head comparisons of ACE inhibitors and ARBs, although there are several studies with limited size and often restricted (e.g., high-risk) populations. While there are some conflicting results in the literature, the current evidence seems to indicate that they are similar in effectiveness but that ACE inhibitors have more side effects (e.g., cough and angioedema). (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Kidney Disease, Race/Ethnic Diversity, UCSF / 17.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Chi-yuan Hsu, MD, MSc (he/him/his) Professor and Division Chief Division of Nephrology University of California, San Francisco San Francisco, CA 94143-0532 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There has been a great deal of controversy recently about how race should be considered in medicine, including its use in estimating kidney function (e.g. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2769035).  A recent paper published in JAMA Network Open by Zelnick et al suggested that removing the race coefficient improves the accuracy of estimating kidney function (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2775076) in the Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort, a NIH-funded study (www.cristudy.org). We are core investigators of the Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort Study and were not involved in the Zelnick’s study that was based on a public use dataset.  Because we were surprised by the methodological approach they took and the conclusion they came to, we implemented our own analysis of the data. (more…)
Author Interviews, Gender Differences, JAMA, University of Pennsylvania / 12.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Nosheen Reza, MD, FACC, FHFSA Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine Penn Center for Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Section of Advanced Heart Failure, Transplantation, and Mechanical Support Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania & the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In academic internal medicine in the United States, gender disparities in salary and promotion have been researched and documented for over 20 years. Despite this, in recent years, the number of women pursuing careers in medicine has increased, and now, more women than men are enrolled in U.S. medical schools. We wanted to take a contemporary look at the composition of the U.S. academic internal medicine physician workforce and evaluate the relationships between the representation of women in each internal medicine specialty with their salaries and academic rank. We hypothesized that even though there may be more women physicians practicing in these specialties compared with prior years, the disparities in academic rank and salary, as compared with men, would still exist. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Electronic Records, JAMA, Pediatrics, Primary Care / 09.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lisa Rotenstein, MD, MBA Assistant Medical Director Population Health and Faculty Wellbeing Department of Medicine Brigham and Women's Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Our previous work in JAMA Internal Medicine demonstrated significant differences in time spent on the electronic health record (EHR) by specialty, and specifically showed that primary care clinicians spent significantly more total and after-hours time on the EHR than surgical and medical specialty counterparts. Primary care clinicians spent twice as long as surgical colleagues on notes, and received more than twice as many messages from team-mates, five times as many patient messages, and fifteen times as many prescription messages each day. Given these findings, the heavy administrative burden placed on primary care clinicians, and previous data about burnout among primary care clinicians, we wanted to better understand differences in time spent on the EHR among the different types of primary care clinicians. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, CDC, Emory, Gender Differences, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 08.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Farhad Islami, MD PHD Scientific Director, Cancer Disparity Research American Cancer Society MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Cancer Society (ACS), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) have collaborated annually since 1998 to provide updated information about cancer occurrence and trends by cancer type, sex, age group, and racial/ethnic group in the United States. In this year’s report, we focus on national cancer statistics and highlight trends in stage-specific survival for melanoma of the skin, the first cancer for which effective immune checkpoint inhibitors were developed. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Medical Imaging, Neurological Disorders / 02.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Michael Ferguson, PhD Instructor in Neurology | Harvard Medical School Lecturer on Neurospirituality | Harvard Divinity School Center for Brain Circuit Therapeutics Brigham and Women’s Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Over 80% of the global population consider themselves religious with even more identifying as spiritual, but the neural substrates of spirituality and religiosity remain unresolved. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Where is this circuit located in the brain? What other effects does this circuit control or influence? Response: We found that brain lesions associated with self-reported spirituality map to a human brain circuit centered on the periaqueductal grey. (more…)
Author Interviews, CDC, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Heart Disease, JAMA, UCSD / 01.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Margaret Ryan MD MPH Medical Director of Defense Health Agency Immunization Healthcare Division Pacific Region Office, San Diego CA Clinical Professor at the University of California San Diego MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Military clinicians, especially those in the Defense Health Agency Immunization Healthcare Division, first became aware of a few cases of myocarditis following COVID-19 vaccination in early Feb 2021.  These cases included young men who presented with chest pain a few days after 2nd dose of mRNA (Pfizer or Moderna) vaccine.  As more young people became eligible for 2nd doses of vaccine, more cases were identified.  By late April, the military had identified 23 cases of myocarditis, with remarkably similar presentations, after COVID-19 vaccination.  This case series is described in the current issue of JAMA Cardiology. (more…)
Author Interviews, Beth Israel Deaconess, Gastrointestinal Disease, NEJM / 01.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Prof. Dr. D. Schuppan, MD, PhD Professor of Medicine Director Institute of Translational Immunology University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University Consultant Gastroenterologist and Hepatologist Director Celiac and Small Intestinal Disease Center Director Center for Food Intolerances and Autoimmunity Director Liver Fibrosis and Metabolism Research Research Center for Immune Therapy (FZI) Mainz Project for Chemical Allergology (MPCA) Mainz, Germany Professor of Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Harvard Medical School Boston, MA 02215 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Celiac disease (CeD) is a common intestinal inflammatory disease that affects about 1% of most wheat consuming populations worldwide. CeD is caused by the ingestion of gluten containing foods, such as wheat, spelt, rye and barley, that activate small intestinal inflammatory T cells. The only current therapy is the rigorous avoidance of even traces of gluten in the daily diet, which is difficult and a social and psychological burden. We previously identified the body’s own enzyme tissue transglutaminase (TG2) as the CeD autoantigen. Moreover, TG2 drives celiac disease pathogenesis by enzymatically modifying dietary gluten peptides that makes them more immunogenic. We therefore developed an oral small molecule (ZED1227) that specifically inhibits TG2 activity in the intestine. While this should attenuate CeD in patients exposed to dietary gluten, it was unclear if  it could prevent gluten induced intestinal inflammation and damage. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Chocolate, Weight Research / 24.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Frank A. J. L. Scheer, PhD, MSc, Neuroscientist and Marta Garaulet, PhD, Visiting Scientist Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders Departments of Medicine and Neurology, Brigham and Women's Hospital. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We and others have shown that not only “what” but also “when” we eat relates to obesity and weight loss
  • Meal timing can influence circadian rhythms and eating a high energy and high sugar food, such as chocolate, either at night or in the morning may have a different effect on the circadian system, and consequently on body weight and metabolism.
  • Milk chocolate has a name for contributing to weight gain due to its high fat, sugar and caloric content. Chocolate eating habit has been associated with long-term weight gain especially in postmenopausal females who are particularly vulnerable to weight gain.
(more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Obstructive Sleep Apnea, UCSF / 21.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yerem Yeghiazarians, MD Professor of Medicine Leone-Perkins Family Endowed Chair in Cardiology San Francisco Board Past-President, American Heart Association Co-Director, Adult Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory Director, Peripheral Interventional Cardiology Program Director, Translational Cardiac Stem Cell Program Cardiovascular Research Institute Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research Associate Member in Experimental Therapeutics, UCSF Helen Diller Cancer Center University of California, San Francisco MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Obstructive sleep apnea is very common, undiagnosed and undertreated. The AHA Scientific Statement was prepared to increase awareness amongst physicians and patients about this condition and to encourage more screening and therapy as appropriate. Obesity is certainly one of the significant risk factors for sleep apnea and we highlight this in the Scientific Statement: “The risk of OSA correlates with body mass index, and obesity remains the one major modifiable risk factor for OSA. In a population-based cohort study of 690 subjects, a 10% weight gain was associated with nearly 32% increase in the apnea-hypopnea index (AHI), and even modest weight control was effective in reducing the new occurrence of sleep-disordered breathing. An even stronger correlation exists between OSA and increased waist circumference and neck size. Neck sizes predisposing to OSA are usually >17 and 16 in for men and women, respectively.” (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Primary Care, Surgical Research, Weight Research / 10.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Alexander Turchin, MD, MS Director of Informatics Research Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Hypertension Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Brigham and Women's Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There is an epidemic of obesity in the U.S.: over 40% of adults are obese. Obesity causes numerous complications, ranging from heart attacks to cancer. Bariatric surgery is one of the most effective ways to treat obesity, but very few patients utilize it; it is unclear why.  (more…)