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.

April 12, 2021

Mayo Clinic Research in the news — 4/12/2021

By Elizabeth Zimmermann

News this week includes a lifetime recognition for Mayo Clinic's associate dean of nursing research, expert commentary on other's medical research, advancements in understanding Alzheimer's disease, and regional research collaborations to improve cancer care.

Mayo-UW-Eau Claire partnership seeks to aid cancer treatment

Yahoo News, via The Leader-Telegram, 4/11/2021

The term "amazing" popped up repeatedly as UW-Eau Claire students described their collaborative laboratory research with Mayo Clinic Health System.

Four students who didn't know what kind of research they might get involved with as undergraduates now find themselves working on a project that eventually could improve cancer treatment for patients around the world.

Pregnancy After Pioneering Treatment for Early Menopause

Medscape, 4/12/2021

A novel therapy combining platelet-rich plasma (PRP) with follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) that is injected directly into the ovaries has the potential to restore ovarian function for women who experience early menopause, possibly allowing for pregnancy without the need for donor eggs. …

In commenting on the study, Stephanie S. Faubion, MD, medical director of the North American Menopause Society, was cautious in her interpretation, noting the need for more research in larger samples.

"Any pregnancy that results from a regenerative therapy is novel," she told Medscape Medical News. "Still, we are a long way away from this being a standard therapy for women with premature ovarian insufficiency."

Sigma Announces 2021 International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame Inductees

Sigma News Release, 4/2021

Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing (Sigma) will induct 20 world-renowned nurse researchers into the International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame at Sigma’s 32nd International Nursing Research Congress in July 2021. During the event, these 20 individuals—representing Australia, Canada, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, and the United States—will be presented with the International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame award and participate in a conversation with Sigma’s president. …

Linda L. Chlan, PhD, RN, ATSF, FAAN
Associate Dean for Nursing Research
Consultant, Professor of Nursing
Division of Nursing Research, Department of Nursing, Mayo Clinic – Rochester, Minnesota, USA

NOTE: Read more about Dr. Chlan and Mayo Clinic's Nursing Research Program.

Arizona health experts call for action to combat ongoing health disparities with minorities

KVOA, 4/8/2021

Health experts are hoping to raise awareness about the health disparities that continue to affect minority communities across the country and right here in Arizona.

The Mayo Clinic is pushing for a call to action to improve these conditions through education and clinical studies. …

Obesity May Help Trigger Heavier Periods: Study

U.S. News & World Report, 4/9/2021

Obese women can be more likely to have heavy monthly periods, and now new research hints at why. …

Dr. Michael Jensen, an endocrinologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., was skeptical about the new findings.

"Women, as they get heavier, are more prone to heavy periods, but the mouse model is hard to link back to women," Jensen noted. Weight loss may help reduce blood loss during menstruation, but more research is needed to fully understand why and how obesity affects menstruation in overweight or obese women, he said.

NOTE: Read more about Dr. Jensen and his research on the health effects of obesity and fat distribution.

Indian American Engineers Named Fellows of American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering

India-West, 4/7/2021

The American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering recently announced the election of 174 new members of the AIMBE College of Fellows in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in medical and biological engineering.

The cohort of members included at least 16 Indian American engineers and those of Indian origin.

… Sunil Krishnan of the Mayo Clinic Florida

NOTE: Read more about Dr. Krishnan and his research interests.

Innovative injectable foam research underway in Chippewa

WEAU, 4/11/2021

Collaborative research into developing clinical foam to protect cancer patients from damaging healthy tissue during treatment is underway in the Chippewa Valley.

Mayo Clinic Health System has teamed up with the UW-Eau Claire biomedical innovator program to work on injectable foam research.

In this unique collaboration, materials are being developed and tested for separation and protection of healthy organs and tissues during the treatment of tumors by freezing or heating. … Students involved hope to continue their research and prepare for human trials one day.

NOTE: Jeremy McBride, M.D., a Mayo Clinic interventional radiologist at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, leads this research collaboration.

Researchers Clarify Alzheimer Disease Biomarkers and MRI Measures

HCP Live, 4/10/2021

Researchers examine how biomarkers are differentially mapped to MRI measures of cortical thickness.

In a recent study, a research team evaluated several Alzheimer disease (AD) biomarkers, including cerebrospinal (CSF) neurofilament light (NfL), neurogranin (Ng), and total-tau (t-tau) to clarify how these markers are differentially mapped to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measures of cortical thickness, microstructural integrity (corpus callosum and cingulum fractional anisotropy [FA]), and white matter hyperintensities (WMH).

“It is important to understand what information different neurodegenerative biomarkers provide to aid in both diagnosis and prognosis, especially because each marker is likely to be reflective of a different composite of pathological processes,” wrote first author Michelle M. Mielke, PhD, professor of epidemiology and neurology, and researcher, Mayo Clinic, and colleagues.

Clinical Trials in COVID Era: How To Keep Moving Forward

ALZForum, 4/7/2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has touched every aspect of health, from neurologic disease broadly (see Part 1 of this story) to clinical research. At the 15th International Conference on Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Diseases, held virtually March 9–14, clinical investigators talked about how they tried to prevail despite interruptions and preserve their trials. Looking to the future, how they will handle people who had COVID-19, or develop it during a trial, remains unclear.

"Many more questions were raised than answered," Ronald Petersen, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, told Alzforum. One thing is certain—the research community will feel the effects of trial delays for a long time. …

Volunteering is good for the soul

Montgomery Advertiser, 4/9/2021

… Researchers at the Mayo Clinic Health System have found six benefits to volunteering, as follows:

  • Decreases the risk of depression
  • Gives a sense of purpose and teaches valuable skills
  • Helps people stay physically and mentally active
  • Reduces stress levels
  • May help you live longer
  • Helps you meet others and develop new relationships

How do Medical Organizations Use Additive Manufacturing?

Machine Design, 4/7/2021

…  MD&M BIOMEDigital Conference panel on applications of 3D printing in medtech. The panel, sponsored by FormlabsTrelleborg and Protolabs, was composed of three individuals with extensive experience in healthcare:

  • Beth Ripley, M.D., Ph.D., director, Veterans Health Administration (VHA) 3D printing network at VA Health Care Systems
  • Sean McEligot, section head of medical device research and development at Mayo Clinic
  • John Foody, manufacturing engineer at Corvia Medical

Keynote Speaker And Innovation Honoree Revealed Ahead Of AMUG 2021

3D Printing Industry, 4/9/2021

The Additive Manufacturing Users Group (AMUG) has revealed the identity of its keynote speaker and this year’s Innovators Showcase honoree ahead of its annual conference. 

At the event, Dr Jonathan Morris, Director of the Mayo Clinic’s 3D Printing Anatomic Modeling Lab, will draw upon his own experiences to deliver a keynote speech on point-of-care production. …

Squelching ApoE in Astrocytes of Tau-Ravaged Mice Dampens Degeneration

ALZForum, 4/10/2021

Almost 30 years after ApoE was pegged as an Alzheimer’s risk gene, researchers are still investigating fundamental questions about how the apolipoprotein sways neurodegenerative disease processes. For one, which cell type is responsible for producing forms of the protein that beckon neurodegeneration? On April 7 in Neuron, researchers pinned some of the blame on astrocytes, which release the lion’s share of ApoE in the brain. Led by David Holtzman and Jason Ulrich at Washington University in St. Louis, the study found that in human ApoE knock-in mice, silencing astrocyte ApoE4, but not ApoE3, assuaged neurodegeneration instigated by tau pathology. …

“The paper highlights how the apolipoprotein, when produced in astrocytes, can exert effects in multiple cell types known to participate in pathogenic pathways of AD,” said Guojun Bu of the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. It also reiterates the potential gain of toxic function conferred on ApoE4 relative to ApoE3, he said. Bu, Holtzman, and other investigators agreed that the study supports the idea of dampening ApoE4 expression as a therapeutic strategy (Feb 2021 news). 

Weighing in on COVID-19


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Tags: 3D printing, About, Alzheimer's disease, biomarkers, biomedical engineering, biomedical research, cancer, clinical trials, COVID-19, Findings, Guojun Bu, health disparities, Jeremy McBride, Jonathan M. Morris, Linda Chlan, Mayo Clinic Health System, medical innovation, menopause, Michael Jensen, Michelle Mielke, MRI, News, News of the Week, obesity, People, platelet rich plasma, research education, Ronald Petersen, Stephanie Faubion, Sunil Krishnan, University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire, women's health

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