Author Interviews, Education, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Yale / 01.08.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Mytien Nguyen, MS Department of Immunobiology, Yale School of Medicine New Haven, Connecticut MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Physician-scientists are critical for innovative translational research. Combined MD-PhD training programs are essential for developing physician-scientists. Although racial and ethnic diversity of MD-PhD matriculants has increased over the past decade, little is known about how attrition rates differ by race and ethnicity. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Endocrinology, Fertility, Lancet, OBGYNE / 25.07.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Raymond M. Anchan, MD, Ph.D. Director, Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine Research Laboratory Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School Obstetrics/Gynecology Center for Infertility and Reproductive Surgery Brigham and Women's Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: As a reproductive endocrinologist, I have the privilege of caring for patients who unfortunately experience premature ovarian insufficiency- Some of these patients are as young as 17 yo. Additionally, a significant number of patients over the years have been reproductive age women who have breast cancer and ovarian failure from chemotherapy.  These patients have been my inspiration to try to find a treatment for them.  Since my earlier days as a neurobiologist and stem cell scientist, it was a natural course for me to seek cell-based therapies that are patient specific using autologous iPSCs. (more…)
Author Interviews, Mental Health Research, Microbiome, Nature, OBGYNE, UCLA / 25.07.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Bridget Callaghan Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Psychology UCLA Dr. Callahan studies interactions between mental and physical health across development.   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: A growing body of evidence links the gut microbiome to brain and immune functioning, and changes to that community of microorganisms is likely among the ways that hardship affects children’s socioemotional development. Limited evidence in humans has demonstrated the adversities experienced prenatally and during early life influence the composition of the gut microbiome, but no studies had examined whether stress experienced in a mother's own childhood could influence the microbiome of the next generation of children. (more…)
Annals Internal Medicine, Author Interviews, Kidney Disease, UCSF / 21.07.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:   Chi-yuan Hsu, MD, MSc (he/him/his) Professor and Division Chief Robert W. Schrier Distinguished Professor Division of Nephrology University of California, San Francisco     MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Acute kidney injury (AKI) had previously been considered a reversible short-term medical problem among hospitalized patients without long-term sequalae in that there is recovery of kidney function back to baseline should the patient survive the hospitalization. Then about 15 years ago, the concept began to shift as research by us and others showed that for patients with severe AKI (e.g. AKI severe enough to require acute dialysis in the hospital), there was more rapid subsequent loss of renal function.  Now based largely on additional observational studies in humans (and animal models), many nephrologists and opinion leaders think that even mild to moderate cases of AKI have long-term sequelae.  We are concerned that the paradigm has swung too much in the opposite direction and we questioned the results of many published studies which did not fully account for differences in background kidney function among those who did and did not experience AKI. (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Emergency Care, Health Care Systems, Johns Hopkins / 19.07.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: David E. Newman-Toker, MD PhD (he/him) Professor of Neurology, Ophthalmology, & Otolaryngology David Robinson Professor of Vestibular Neurology Director, Division of Neuro-Visual & Vestibular Disorders Director, Armstrong Institute Center for Diagnostic Excellence Johns Hopkins Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Diagnostic errors are believed to be a major public health issue, but valid, quantitative estimates of harm are lacking. In 2015, the National Academy of Medicine stated in their report Improving Diagnosis in Healthcare that improving diagnosis was a “moral, professional, and public health imperative” yet also noted that “the available research [is] not adequate to extrapolate a specific estimate or range of the incidence of diagnostic errors in clinical practice today.” We sought a scientifically robust answer to the question of how many patients in the US suffer serious harms as a result of medical misdiagnosis. (more…)
Anesthesiology, Author Interviews, Cannabis, JAMA, Opiods, Surgical Research, University Texas / 10.07.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Paul Potnuru, MD Assistant Professor Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pain Medicine The John P. and Kathrine G. McGovern Medical School The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston UTHealth MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The use of cannabis is on the rise in the United States, as it becomes increasingly legally accepted and is viewed as harmless. Furthermore, the potency of cannabis is steadily increasing over time. There is some evidence from previous studies that compared to non-users, cannabis users require more anesthetics, have higher pain after surgery that requires more opioids, and have an increased risk of postoperative nausea and vomiting. Given this context of increased usage and potential risks during surgery, we conducted a study to examine the impact of cannabis use on patients undergoing surgery. (more…)
Author Interviews, Depression, JAMA, Mental Health Research, NYU, USPSTF / 27.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Gbenga Ogedegbe, MD, MPH Dr. Adolph & Margaret Berger Professor of Population Health Director, Division of Health & Behavior Director Center for Healthful Behavior Change Department of Population Health NYU Langone Health NYU School of Medicine Member of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Depression and anxiety disorders are common mental health conditions affecting the lives of many adults in the U.S. The Task Force cares deeply about the health of people nationwide, so we reviewed the latest evidence on how best to support the mental health of adults in primary care. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Response:  The evidence shows us that all adults should be screened for depression and those under 65 should also be screened for anxiety. These recommendations apply to everyone without signs or symptoms of depression or anxiety. We also strongly encourage anyone who has signs of depression or anxiety to talk with their clinician so that they can get the care they need. (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Diabetes, Endocrinology / 26.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Bita Zahedi MD MA Endocrinologist Massachusetts General Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The purpose of this study was to develop and validate a measure of dietary advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) to investigate the role of dietary AGEs in diabetic disease processes.  AGEs are a group of highly reactive compounds involved in the pathophysiology of diabetic complications, such as microvascular disease, cardiomyopathy, and possibly bone health. AGEs form through a nonenzymatic reaction between reducing sugars and free amino groups of proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids, also known as a Maillard or browning reaction. Endogenous AGE formation and accumulation is a normal part of metabolism and aging, however the process of glycation can be enhanced by hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia, and increased oxidative stress. Additionally, AGEs can be absorbed from exogenous sources via consumption of various food items. Prior studies demonstrate that skin AGEs are predictive of Dietary AGEs (dAGEs) which are naturally present in certain uncooked foods, mainly animal-derived products, furthermore the method of food preparation can result in significant AGE formation. Considering the ubiquitous intake of dAGEs, it is possible that the consumption of exogenous AGEs contribute to AGE-induced oxidative stress, inflammation, and its subsequent detrimental sequalae. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Diabetes, Ophthalmology / 16.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ali Hafezi-Moghadam, Ph.D., M.D Director, Molecular Biomarkers Nano-Imaging Laboratory (MBNI) Associate Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School Brigham and Women’s Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: “It is very easy to answer many fundamental biological questions” said Richard Feynman in his 1959 address, where he also offered his simple and ingenious solution: “you just look at the thing!”[1]. As a biologist, I am familiar with the challenges surrounding looking at things in the context of life. There is no single device or technology that lets me simply see the answers to my questions. How does diabetes harm the tissues in the body? When exactly does the pathology start and which molecules and cells are involved? Trying to answer these questions, I have spent the past two decades innovating new ways of quantifying expression of molecules in the living organism [2]. At the same time to study diabetes, we needed a realistic rodent model that mirrors the human disease. In collaboration with KC Hayes[3], we first introduced the Nile grass rat (NGR, Arvicanthis niloticus), a gerbil that recapitulates the main features of the human type 2 diabetes [4]. For visualization of early changes, the eye offers a unique site. Much of my lab’s work focused on the first effects of diabetes in the retina, the site of the neurons that perceive light in the back of the eye [5], [6], [7]. In recent studies, we focused on how diabetes affects the lens in the eye of our animals [8], [9]. Diabetes is a major risk factor for cataract formation, a condition during which the lens loses its original transparency to visible light. How diabetic cataracts are formed is not well understood. A popular and prevailing theory, termed “sugar cataracts”, has been around for over half a century. According to the sugar hypothesis of cataracts, the excess levels of the sugar molecule, glucose, in the lens are transformed through the polyol pathway into the sugar-alcohol sorbitol. The resulting osmotic dysbalance leads to swelling of the fiber cells and opacity of the lens. Even though the sugar hypothesis has never been proven, it was generally accepted and remained unchallenged for a very long time. That is where our latest experimental results became relevant. (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Nature, Prostate Cancer, UCSF / 12.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rebecca E. Graff, ScD Assistant Professor University of California, San Francisco Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics Mission Hall: Global Health & Clinical Sciences Building San Francisco, CA 94158 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: PSA screening for prostate cancer has long been controversial. While it does seem to reduce mortality attributable to prostate cancer, it also results in the diagnosis of many cancers that never otherwise would have presented symptomatically. In addition, PSA levels are affected by factors other than prostate tumors (e.g., age, prostatic inflammation, and genetics), such that men with high PSA values are often referred for biopsy but do not end up having cancer. We hypothesized that accounting for the genetic component of PSA could yield adjusted values that better distinguish who should get a prostate biopsy. (more…)
Author Interviews, Columbia, Rheumatology / 06.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: W. Benjamin Nowell PhD Director of Patient-Centered Research at Global Healthy Living Foundation Columbia University in the City of New York New York, New York MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Given that lab tests are an important part of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) diagnosis and monitoring, people living with the condition want and need to understand their lab results –also known as blood work – for patient-centered shared decision making about treatment. The presentation titled, “Patient Perceptions of Rheumatoid Arthritis Blood Work and Utility of a Test Predicting Response to New Medication: A Cross-sectional Survey in the ArthritisPower,” presented at the 76th EULAR European Congress of Rheumatology (June 2, 2023 in Milan, Italy) includes results from a recent ArthritisPower survey (n=405) that asked patients to share their perceptions about RA bloodwork, reasons their doctor orders these tests, and how results are used. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Genetic Research, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Stanford / 06.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Allison W. Kurian, M.D., M.Sc. Professor of Medicine and of Epidemiology and Population Health Associate Chief, Division of Oncology Co-Leader, Population Sciences Program, Stanford Cancer Institute Director, Women’s Clinical Cancer Genetics Program Stanford University School of Medicine Stanford, CA 94305-5405 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What types of cancers were in the study? Response: Genetic testing for cancer risk is increasingly important after a cancer diagnosis, to inform use of targeted therapies, secondary cancer prevention approaches and cascade genetic testing of family members. However, very little is known about how genetic testing is used after a cancer diagnosis at the population level. We leveraged a very large population-based data resource, the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) cancer registries of the states of California and Georgia, and linked data from these registries to clinical genetic testing results provided by the four major laboratories that provide such testing. We used this linked registry-genetic testing dataset to study adults (age >=20 years) diagnosed with all types of cancer in the states of Georgia and California from 2013-2019. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Lung Cancer, University of Pennsylvania / 05.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lova L. Sun, MD, MSCE Medical Oncology Assistant Professor of Medicine Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: An common clinical question for patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer with long-term response to immunotherapy-based treatment is how long to continue treatment. The major clinical trials stopped immunotherapy at a maximum of 2 years, but in clinical practice many patients and clinicians continue treatment beyond this time point. We conducted a retrospective study of lung cancer patients across the US with long-term response to immunotherapy, to compare survival between those who stopped treatment at 2 years vs those who continued beyond 2 years. We found that there was no statistically significant difference in survival between the two groups. (more…)
Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Biomarkers, University of Pittsburgh / 31.05.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Bruna Bellaver PhD Postdoctoral associate Department of Psychiatry University of Pittsburgh Tharick Pascoal, MD, Ph.D. Neurologist and assistant professor of Neurology and Psychiatry University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Amyloid-β (Aβ) deposition is considered one of the markers of Alzheimer’s disease pathology in the brain. The sequential order of this cascade includes the development of tau pathology and consequent cognitive decline. However, many people with Aβ deposition in the brain do not progress in the disease, suggesting that other biological processes are playing a role in these pathological events. In vitro evidence suggests that reactive astrocytes unleash Aβ effects in pathological tau phosphorylation. We found that, in cognitively healthy individuals, Aβ is associated with tau pathology only in individuals with increased astrocyte reactivity. (more…)
Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, JAMA, UCLA / 20.05.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Julia Cave Arbanas Project Manager and     John N. Mafi, MD, MPH Associate Professor of Medicine General Internal Medicine & Health Services Research David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLAJohn N. Mafi, MD, MPH Associate Professor of Medicine General Internal Medicine & Health Services Research David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What is lecanemab used for and how well does it work? Response: Lecanemab is a treatment for mild cognitive impairment and mild dementia that was approved in January 2023 as part of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) accelerated approval program. The results from a recent phase 3 clinical trial show a modest clinical benefit: the rate of cognitive decline by 27% in an 18-month study involving participants experiencing the early stage of Alzheimer’s, with an 0.45-point absolute difference in cognitive testing scores. However, due to the risk of brain swelling and bleeding (also known as amyloid-related imaging abnormalities), treatment with lecanemab involves frequent MRIs and neurology or geriatrics appointments to monitor for these abnormalities, which can be life threatening. So far, three patient deaths have potentially been tied to lecanemab. It is likely that the FDA will grant is lecanemab traditional approval later this year, prompting Medicare to reconsider its current coverage restrictions and potentially enabling widespread use. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, JAMA, NYU, USPSTF / 09.05.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Gbenga Ogedegbe, MD, MPH Dr. Adolph & Margaret Berger Professor of Population Health Director, Division of Health & Behavior Director Center for Healthful Behavior Change Department of Population Health NYU Langone Health NYU School of Medicine Member of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Tuberculosis (TB) is a bacterial infection that is spread through the air from one person to another and usually affects the lungs. It’s a significant public health concern in the U.S. People can be infected with TB bacteria but not have any symptoms or be contagious, which is known as a latent TB infection or LTBI. If LTBI is left untreated, it can progress to active TB, which can cause serious health problems and become contagious. (more…)
Author Interviews, Health Care Systems, JAMA, Technology, UCSD / 01.05.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Zechariah Zhu, B.S. Affiliate Scientist with the Qualcomm Institute at UC San Diego and study co-author First author: John W. Ayers, PhD, MA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In today’s day and age (especially after the COVID-19 pandemic), an increasing number of people are turning to virtual options for healthcare. Most notably, there was a 1.6-fold increase in electronic patient messages, which significantly increased the burden on physicians, with a record-high proportion of physicians (62%) reporting burnout symptoms. On the other hand, we also see the rise of AI technologies like ChatGPT—an AI chatbot assistant that has taken the world by storm recently with its ability to provide lengthy response essays to many questions it is asked. Our objective for this study, then, was to evaluate the ability of ChatGPT to provide quality and empathetic responses to patient questions. (more…)
Author Interviews, Duke, OBGYNE / 26.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: TEAM FEMTECH Feng Yi Low, MD student (Class of 2024), Duke-NUS Medical School Casey Ang Fann Ting, Biomedical Engineering student, College of Design and Engineering, National University of Singapore (NUS) Anar Sanjaykumar Kothary, MBA student, NUS Business School   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this innovation? What is the problem you sought to mitigate? Response: A safe and low cost solution to reduce the incidence of moderate to severe vaginal tears during childbirth. Vaginal tears are a serious complication during delivery. 90% of women will experience it during childbirth. It is even more prominent in the Asian context as Asian women are 74% more likely to experience tearing due to various factors such as their skin composition as well as stature to name a few. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, NCI, Ovarian Cancer / 21.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lauren Hurwitz, PhD Postdoctoral Fellow Division of Cancer Epidemiology & Genetics National Cancer Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Prior studies have demonstrated that frequent (i.e., daily or near daily) use of aspirin is associated with a lower risk of developing ovarian cancer. We sought to determine if this risk reduction is also observed for individuals with greater genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer, who may benefit more from preventive interventions. Our study found that individuals who took aspirin frequently had a lower risk of ovarian cancer, regardless of whether they had higher or lower genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Genetic Research, PNAS, UCSD / 20.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Chinmay Kalluraya a Selma and Robert Silagi Award for Undergraduate Excellence winner UC San Diego and now a graduate student at MIT and Matt Daugherty  Ph.D Associate Professor University of California, San Diego Department of Molecular Biology, School of Biological Sciences La Jolla CA, 92093-0377 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you explain the role of retinoid-binding protein? eye, visionResponse: We were broadly interested in discovering instances of bacterial genes that have been acquired by diverse animal genomes over millions of years of evolution by the process of horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Since these events are quite rare and most previous discoveries have been serendipitous, we developed computational methods to identify genes acquired by HGT in animals. One of the exciting discoveries from our work was that vertebrate IRBP appeared to have originated in bacteria and is now a critical component of the vertebrate visual cycle, so this paper focuses on that one discovery. IRBP or interphotoreceptor retinoid binding protein is an important protein present in the space between two major cell types in our eyes, photoreceptor cells and RPE cells. Our ability to see involves an intricate set of steps where light is first sensed by causing a change (isomerization) in the chemical structure of molecules in the eye called retinoids. This sensing of light occurs in our photoreceptor cells. Following this change in the chemical structure, the retinoid needs to be recycled back to the chemical structure that can again sense light. This recycling occurs in RPE cells. IRBP performs the essential function of shuttling retinoids between the photoreceptors and the RPE cells, which allows the cycle of sensing and regeneration to work. Supporting its importance, mutations in IRBP (also known as retinol binding protein 3 or RBP3) can cause several severe human eye diseases. (more…)
ADHD, Author Interviews, JAMA, Pediatrics, University of Michigan / 18.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Sean Esteban McCabe, PhD Director, Center for the Study of Drugs, Alcohol, Smoking and Health Department of Health Behavior and Biological Sciences University of Michigan School of Nursing Ann Arbor, MI MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Prescription stimulant therapy for ADHD helps millions of people, including in my own family, and students, friends and colleagues. It's critical to balance the need for access to these medications while reducing the risk for misuse. This is more important than ever now because there have been recent increases in the prescribing of stimulant therapy for ADHD. There is a need to understand the prevalence of stimulant therapy for ADHD and prescription stimulant misuse in U.S. middle and high schools. (more…)
Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Gender Differences, JAMA, Menopause / 03.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rachel Buckley, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Neurology Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: While a fair amount of studies have focused on the effects of menopause and hormone therapy on risk of dementia, far fewer studies have tested their association with the biology of Alzheimer’s disease, namely amyloid and tau. This is critical to know given that it still remains unclear what might be the driving mechanism of the menopause transition on risk for dementia. This is what our study set out to investigate. This study is one of the first to report a link between women’s age at menopause and tau in the brain, which we measured with positron emission tomography neuroimaging. We found that in multiple areas of the brain that tend to be most likely to show higher tau in women than men, women with earlier age at menopause and elevated levels of amyloid showed higher levels of tau than those who reported an average age at menopause (~50 years in the United States). Women who reported premature menopause (<40 years at menopause onset) exhibited a much higher risk of tau in the brain. This supports the notion that longer exposure to estrogen throughout life might be protective against Alzheimer’s disease. (more…)
Addiction, Author Interviews, CDC, PLoS, Race/Ethnic Diversity, UCLA / 23.03.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Maria-Rita D'Orsogna Ph.D. Professor, Mathematics California State University, Northridge Adjunct Associate Professor Department of Computational Medicine at UCLA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Drug overdose deaths have been increasing in the USA for the past two decades. A ‘third wave’ of overdose fatalities started in 2013, with a shift from prescription opioids towards synthetic ones, in particular illicit fentanyl. To examine trends in drug overdose deaths by gender, race and geography in the United States during the period 2013-2020, we used an epidemiological database provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, extracting rates by race and gender in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia. We considered the impact of four main drug categories psychostimulants with addiction potential such as methamphetamines; heroin; prescription opioids and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl and its derivatives. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Immunotherapy, Melanoma, Science, UT Southwestern / 22.03.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Andrew Y. Koh, M.D. Associate Professor, Pediatrics and Microbiology University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Director of Pediatric Cellular and ImmunoTherapeutics Program University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and Children's Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We asked the basic question how does a bacteria in your gut help your immune system fight a cancer outside the gut (extraintestinal tumor).  Based on work that our group and others have published in the infectious diseases, microbiology, and inflammation fields, we knew that certain conditions (e.g. inflammation, infection) promote gut microbiota to move from the gut to the mesenteric lymph nodes.  So we hypothesized that immune checkpoint therapy (which essentially induces inflammation to promote tumor killing) might induce gut microbiota translocation to the mesenteric lymph nodes and that this might be the first step by which gut bacteria can engage with host immune cells (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Genetic Research, JAMA, Personalized Medicine, Vanderbilt / 18.03.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jonathan Mosley, MD, PhD Associate Professor Division of Clinical Pharmacology Departments of Internal Medicine and Biomedical Informatics Vanderbilt University Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Prostate cancer is an important source of morbidity and mortality among men. Earlier detection of disease is essential to reduce these adverse outcomes. Prostate cancer is heritable, and many single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with disease risk have been identified. Thus, there is considerable interest in using tools such as polygenic risk scores, which measure the burden of genetic risk variants an individual carries, to identify men at elevated risk of disease. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Nature, NYU, Pancreatic / 17.03.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Aristotelis Tsirigos, Ph.D. Professor of Medicine and Pathology Co-director, Precision Medicine Director, Applied Bioinformatics LaboratoriesNew York University School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Pancreatic cancer is one of the most lethal types of cancer with only 12% of patients surviving more than 5 years after diagnosis. One of the main reasons behind the dismal prognosis is the complexity of the tumor. Pancreatic cancer cells are very heterogenous and interact with different types of non-malignant cells in what is known as the tumor microenvironment. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, NIH, OBGYNE / 01.03.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
William A. Petri, MD PhDWilliam A. Petri, MD PhD Wade Hampton Frost Professor of Medicine and Vice Chair for Research of the Department of Medicine Professor of Medicine, Microbiology, Immunology and Cancer Biology, and Pathology, Medicine: Infectious Diseases and International Health, Medicine: Infectious Diseases and International Health
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? MedicalResearch.com We tested if prophylactic antibiotics could prevent sepsis and death in women in the late stages of normal vaginal labor and delivery. It was previously known that antibiotic were effective for this purpose in women undergoing C-section. The study was a randomized placebo-controlled trial at 8 international sites of nearly 30,000 women. (more…)
Author Interviews, Diabetes, Karolinski Institute, Pediatrics, Weight Research / 28.02.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yuxia Wei PhD Student Unit of Epidemiology Institute of Environmental Medicine Karolinska Institutet Stockholm | Sweden   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Diabetes is traditionally known for having two types (type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes). However, it is becoming increasingly clear that diabetes is much more complex than this traditional classification. Several attempts have been made to address this heterogeneity and in 2018, a  Swedish ground-breaking study proposed that there are five distinct subtypes of diabetes in adults. They have been replicated in different populations and it has been shown that there are differences between the subtypes in terms of genetics and risks of complications. Another way of elucidating the relevance of these subtypes is to investigate whether the influence of known risk factors for diabetes is different on different subtypes. Our study is one of the first attempts to address this. We used a study design known as Mendelian randomization, to investigate the influence of childhood obesity on these diabetes subtypes that typically occur after age 35. This work was a collaboration between Karolinska institutet in Stockholm, University of Bristol in the UK and Sun Yat-Sen University in China. (more…)
Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Genetic Research, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Stanford / 21.02.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yann Le Guen, Ph.D. Assistant Director, Computational Biology Quantitative Sciences Unit Stanford Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Apart from aging, the strongest contributing factor for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease is a specific allele of the APOE gene, which has three common alleles E2, E3, and E4. While E3 is the most common and considered as the reference, E2 is associated with decreased Alzheimer’s disease risk and E4 is associated with increased Alzheimer’s disease risk. Notably the prevalence of E4 among Alzheimer’s patient is high with about 60% of these carrying at least one E4 allele, while solely about 30% Americans carry one E4 allele. It’s worth emphasizing that individuals with an E4/E4 genotype have an exponential increased in their risk to develop AD (10 times as likely than the reference E3/E3 genotype), and individuals with an E3/E4 genotype have an intermediate risk. Though, most studies of Alzheimer’s disease genetic have been focused on European ancestry, this is beginning to change thanks to NIH’s efforts to fund more studies in non-European ancestry individuals. Our study built on these recent efforts to assess the Alzheimer disease risk associated with an APOE variant (R145C) present in about ~4% African Americans, but extremely rare in Europeans. (more…)
Author Interviews, Genetic Research, NIH, Pediatrics / 20.02.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Natalie Shaw, M.D., MMSc. Principal Investigator Head of the Pediatric Neuroendocrinology Group Dr. Shaw holds a secondary appointment in NIEHS Reproductive and Developmental Biology Laboratory.   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you briefly describe the two affected conditions? Dr. Shaw: Congenital arhinia is a rare congenital malformation characterized by the complete absence of an external nose and internal olfactory (smell) structures.  It is frequently associated with eye and reproductive defects.  Facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD) type 2 is a form of muscular dystrophy that presents in young adulthood.  Both conditions are caused by mutations in the gene SMCHD1.  In FSHD type 2, we know that loss of SMCHD1 activity leads to expression of a toxic protein called DUX4 in muscle.  The cause of arhinia was unknown. (more…)