Advancing The Science

Mayo Clinic Medical Science Blog

Archive for December, 2012

Francis Collins on NPR, Mayo researchers in Science, Wired

Posted on December 19th, 2012 by Admin

It's been a fun week watching people pop up here and there -- some in unexpected places.

Steven Ekker, Ph.D., head Mayo Clinic's zebrafish research program, was part of Elizabeth Pennisi's article on that up and coming animal research model in this week's issue of Science. He and his team recently published findings on new tools to make zebrafish easier to use for researchers -- that was in Nature.

Jan van Deursen, Ph.D., and collegue Darren Baker, Ph.D., made both Science's news section and then were "picked up" on Wired's website for their Nature Cell Biology findings on the impact of the protein BubR1 on extending the health span of mice. Over expression of this gene kept tumors and other aspects of aging at bay for most of the lives of the mice.

And then we have to share a link to NIH director Dr. Francis Collins's appearance on the unlikely venue of Wait,Wait, Don't Tell Me, the current events comedy quiz show on National Public Radio. The good Dr. Collins held his own with the panel of comedians as he played It's Not My Job, as he answered trivia questions about baseball stars. Or tried to. He got only one right answer out of the three asked, but then as we all know in science there's no such thing as batting a thousand.  Still, it was a great job of putting the National Institutes of Health on a general audience program and explaining what NIH does --- most of the American public has never heard of it. Dr. Collins understands the first rule of communicating: know your audience and where to find them. More researchers should be brave and insightful enough to wade into general programs -- even if it's outside of their comfort zone -- to convey the importance of science to the public.

Celiac Disease Webinar Featuring Mayo Clinic Gastroenterologist Joseph Murray, M.D.

Posted on December 17th, 2012 by Admin

Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist and celiac disease expert Joseph Murray, M.D., will be taking part in a webinar organized by the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) this Wednesday, December 19, 2012.

The webinar, titled “You Ask, We Answer: 60 Minutes with Top Celiac Disease Researchers”, begins at 11 a.m. CST, and will be an opportunity for Dr. Murray to address the gluten-free community’s most pressing questions about celiac disease.

“The public is keenly interested in gluten and its potential for harms such as celiac disease," says Dr. Murray. "The popularity of the topic, however, is not matched by a high level of scientifically based information.  As clinicians and scientists, we are both informed and challenged by patients and the members of the public to provide answers. This webinar provides such a platform.”

In addition to Dr. Murray, the webinar will also feature Daniel Leffler, M.D., M.S., of the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

For more information and to register, visit:

In addition to their webinar, Dr. Murray also recently participated in a Q&A session with the NFCA about going gluten-free before a diagnosis.

Mayo and NBC News: Tweeting on Flu, Whooping Cough

Posted on December 12th, 2012 by Admin

Mayo doctors Tweeting with NBC News and the CDC

Three Mayo Clinic physician researchers joined colleagues from the Centers for Disease Control and NBC's Robert Bazell and his crew for a timely Twitter chat on the flu, which is starting early this year.

Gregory Poland, M.D., Ph.D., Priya Sampathkumar, M.D., and Young Juhn, M.D., joined Joseph Bresee, M.D., Ph.D. of the CDC, to answer questions for an hour this week.

Our Week at the 2012 World Stem Cell Summit

Posted on December 7th, 2012 by Admin

[View the story "Our Week at #WSCS12." on Storify]

Kinecting with Annerieke, Part 4

Posted on December 2nd, 2012 by Admin

Annerieke Heuvelink, Ph.D. is a researcher with the Dutch institution TNO, who is spending a year at Mayo Clinic working in the HAIL Laboratory, a partnership between Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation, Robert and Arlene Kogod Center on Aging and Charter House.

In this installment of Kinecting with Annerieke, Annerieke shares an update on the progress of her exer-gaming study and points out the logistical differences between election debates held in the Netherlands and those held in the US.