Advancing the Science

Mayo Clinic Medical Science Blog – an eclectic collection of research- and research education-related stories: feature stories, mini news bites, learning opportunities, profiles and more from Mayo Clinic.

May 4, 2020

Research News Roundup–April 2020

By Elizabeth Zimmermann
team of people in lab supply area
Mayo research team, 'before COVID'

Since everyone is staying close to home these days, perhaps you've been spending more time on the internet, and have already seen the news. If not, or if you want a recap, read April's Research News Roundup. This includes brief summaries and links to Mayo Clinic's research news releases from the past month. Most are related to COVID-19, so we put the non-COVID news up front. Read on for more information from Mayo Clinic Research.

Prescribing an overdose: A chapter in the opioid epidemic

book open to page with fentanyl printed on it, test tubes next to the book

Research indicates that widespread opioid overprescribing contributed to the opioid epidemic. New research shows that this dangerous trend has apparently been coupled with another: inappropriate use of high-potency opioids.

A multi-institution research collaboration led by Mayo Clinic published its findings Wednesday, April 15, in JAMA Network Open. The study showed that more than half of Americans starting the most highly regulated opioids might be receiving inappropriate treatment.


Mayo Clinic research finds spina bifida surgery before birth restores brain structure

pregnant woman's midsection, shown in pajamas on bed, with her hands cradling her stomach

Surgery performed on a fetus in the womb to repair defects from spina bifida triggers the body's ability to restore normal brain structure, Mayo Clinic research discovered.

Research by Rodrigo Ruano, M.D., Ph.D., chair of Mayo Clinic's Division of Maternal and Fetal Medicine, finds that fetal surgery to correct congenital spinal cord defects is more effective at healing neurological structure than surgery after birth. This research was published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings.


As promised, here are releases related to both COVID-19 and Mayo Clinic's research and research education activities. Although we usually excerpt a bit from each, this time we've linked simply to each news release via the headline. As you can see, there are many different areas of investigation around COVID-19, from better ways of cleaning and sanitizing to testing, tracing and treatment, as well as specific considerations for patients with certain additional conditions or unusual symptoms.

All COVID-19 news and information from Mayo Clinic is collected online in a single location.

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Tags: birth defects, COVID-19, Findings, heart attack, heart disease, maternal and fetal medicine, Mayo Clinic Laboratories, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, neurology, News, opioids, plasma, radiology, Research News Roundup, Rodrigo Ruano, spina bifida

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