Advancing The Science

Mayo Clinic Medical Science Blog

December 15th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Plugs Into Drug Discovery

By Bob Nellis

DE_Drug_DiscoveryThe research laboratory of Mayo Clinic pediatric oncologist Richard J. Bram, M.D., Ph.D., was enjoying the kind of success many researchers hope for. His team in Rochester, Minnesota, had long been interested in studying brain tumors, particularly those in children.

“They’re the second most common malignancy in children, but the development of cures has lagged,” Dr. Bram says.

Dr. Bram’s research team made a big discovery: They found that a particular protein called cyclophilin B turned up in abundance in glioblastomas and medulloblastomas, two deadly nervous system tumors.

The protein seemed to be critical to these two cancers. “The findings suggested the protein could be a good target for a drug, selectively [...]

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Tags: biomarkers, cancer, Center for Individualized Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Research

December 9th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

nuSURF Students Best Advocates for Science

By Bob Nellis

Mayo Clinic's 2014 SURF team

Mayo Clinic's 2014 SURF team

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships are awarded every year to deserving students who are interested in exploring specific topics in research. The goal, in addition to learning alongside professional medical researchers, is to determine if the students are truly interested in persuing research as a career. The students do everything a scientist does, including presenting findings at the end of their project. Mayo Clinic's bumper crop of nuSURF students (nu for nephrology and urology) did rather well this year, according to mentor Michael Romero, Ph.D.  Vanderbilt University in Nashville was the destination for Mayo's 23 SURF fellows, where they attended a two-day conference for [...]

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Tags: Mayo Clinic, Research, science education, Summer Undergraduate Research Fellows, SURF

December 4th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Biomarker Discovery: Staying One Step Ahead of Cancer

By Bob Nellis

DE_BiomarkerFour researchers at Mayo Clinic combined their talents to spur a “bedside to bench” movement that takes the issues they face in the clinic back to the laboratory in the hopes of discovering biomarkers to help specific patients facing difficult medical problems.

George Vasmatzis, Ph.D., co-director of Mayo Clinic’s Biomarker Discovery Program in the Center for Individualized Medicine, has joined thoracic surgeon Dennis Wigle, M.D., Ph.D., urologist R. Jeffrey Karnes, M.D., and hematopathologist Andrew L. Feldman, M.D., in harnessing the power of biomarkers to benefit their patients. This new approach to discovering medical biomarkers has led to 32 molecular cancer discoveries in 2013 alone and dozens of tests that physicians [...]

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Tags: biomarkers, cancer, Center for Individualized Medicine, Discovery's Edge, Research, Rochester

November 13th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Researchers Seek Solutions for Treatment Resistant Depression

By Bob Nellis

Editor’s note: The following post is by Susannah Tye, Ph.D., researcher in Mayo’s Department of Psychiatry and Psychology. She and her team will be presenting at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Washington, D.C. next week.

Susannah Tye, Ph.D.

Susannah Tye, Ph.D.

An important issue in the treatment of depression is development of new and effective treatments for those patients that do not respond effectively to available antidepressant therapies. Such individuals are diagnosed with treatment resistant depression. Without effective treatment, these individuals can suffer for months or years limited or no relief from their symptoms. Researchers within the Mayo Clinic Depression Center are investigating the reasons why some patients do [...]

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Tags: depression, Mayo Clinic, psychiatry, Research, Rochester, Society for Neuroscience, Treatment resistant depression

October 23rd, 2014 · Leave a Comment

We Can Do More! Be an Advocate for Cancer Research Funding

By Nicole Brudos Ferrara

The post below was written by Toni Kay Mangskau, clinical trials referral coordinator at Mayo Clinic Cancer Center and an active volunteer for the American Cancer Society and the National Patient Advocate Foundation.

Three generations of womenSeptember 2014 was the 10th anniversary of the death of my brother-in-law, Bruce, from cancer. I carry close to my heart a family conversation about Bruce urgently looking for any clinical trial opportunities in the world so he could possibly have more time to live. Unfortunately, his health declined and he was hospitalized in intensive care. As I walked into his hospital room, Bruce was surrounded by his wife, mother and children. Except for the medical machines, there was a [...]

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Tags: advocacy, advocate, cancer, Cancer Research, Research

October 13th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Physicians Appointed to Florida Alzheimer's Board

By Bob Nellis

Leonard Petrucell, Ph.D.

Leonard Petrucell, Ph.D.

Neill Graff-Radford, M.D.

Neill Graff-Radford, M.D.

Two Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville specialists in Alzheimer’s disease — neurologist Neill Graff-Radford, M.D., and molecular neuroscientist Leonard Petrucelli, Ph.D. — have been appointed to Florida’s Alzheimer’s Disease Research Grant Advisory Board.

The appointment was made on Oct. 3 by State Surgeon General John Armstrong, M.D., FACS, who is also the Florida Secretary of Health. The 11-member board is a component of the new Ed and Ethel Moore Alzheimer’s Disease Research Program that will assist in the effort to fund research leading to the [...]

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Tags: advisory board, Alzheimer's, Alzheimer's disease, Florida

October 8th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Photon counting CT Scanner makes research debut

By Bob Nellis

image

Dr. Cynthia McCollough of Mayo Clinic and Dr. Thomas Flohr of Siemens.

The arrival of a new CT scanner at Mayo Clinic is not usually worthy of a ribbon cutting ceremony, but this isn't your ordinary scanner. Destined solely for research, the first photon-counting-detector-based spectral CT  to be put into service anywhere was recently delivered to Mayo's Radiology Research Division. Obtained through a grant from the National Institutes of Health, the machine provides spatial resolution and material discrimination sensitivity at much lower radiation doses than conventional scanners. Reducing radiation exposure wherever possible has been a major objective for Cynthia McCollough, Ph.D. (sharing the scissors duty here). While the photo counting scanner will [...]

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Tags: atherosclerosis, imaging, Mayo Clinic research, radiology, radiology research, Siemens

September 18th, 2014 · 1 Comment

Kidney cancer survivor joins Mayo experts to share the changing treatment of kidney cancer

By Bob Nellis


Cynthia Chauhan joins Winston Tan, M.D., and Al Copland, Ph.D., both from the Mayo Clinic in Florida, for our second blog post in a lengthy series about kidney cancer. Cynthia is a Mayo Clinic patient who is a kidney and breast cancer survivor, leader of a kidney cancer survivor group, and patient advocate. Cynthia would like to share her thoughts on clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC), the most common form of kidney cancer and the diagnosis that she received over 16 years ago.

Chauhan: ccRCC is an aggressive cancer which, with the exception of high dose IL2, a difficult treatment with efficacy in only seven percent of ccRCC patients, is only treatable not curable when it metastasizes. When kidney cancer kills, [...]

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Tags: Cynthia Chauhan, kidney cancer, Mayo Clinic in Florida, Winston Tan, Al Copland, MayoClinicFL

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