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.

July 26, 2021

Mayo Clinic Research in the news — 7/26/2021

By Advancing the Science contributor

Mayo Clinic expertise has a consistent footprint in the news in 2021. This week's topics include data security and interoperability; some lesser discussed COVID-19 related topics: language development, booster vaccines for immunocompromised individuals, portable air filters; as well as early onset dementia, and the need for diversity among bone marrow donors.


Vaccines are highy unlikely to cause side effects long after getting the shot

National Geographic, 7/22/2021

… So, no vaccine has caused chronic conditions to emerge years or decades later, says Robert Jacobson, medical director of the population health science program at the Mayo Clinic. “Study after study have looked for this with all sorts of vaccines, and have not found it to be the case,” he says…


Big Tech player promises big interoperability via new data engine

AI in Healthcare, 7/22/2021

… Google says Indiana University Health is already using the engine and Mayo Clinic collaborated in fine-tuning its design.

Mayo’s vice chair of IT, Jim Buntrock, offers an example of the engine in action: building a “heads-up display” to prioritize bedside visits according to patients’ needs relative to one another…


Washington PostSuffering with hiccups that never seem to go away

…Less commonly, hiccups — when accompanied by nausea and vomiting — can signal a potentially serious condition, neuromyelitis optica.

…"People with this usually have been in otherwise perfect health," says Mayo Clinic neurologist Brian Weinshenker, who studies the disease. "It usually just comes out of the blue. Some people will have just hiccups. Some will have just vomiting. Many will have both. If the symptoms are persistent and don’t respond to standard treatment, consider this [as a possible diagnosis]. I think it’s a relatively rare condition. But it’s an important one that — if identified — will allow you to intervene early to prevent blindness and paralysis."



ABC NewsNew study sheds light on pandemic’s effect on language development in children

Live interview with Sarah Charney, speech pathologist, Mayo Clinic Arizona.


Yahoo! News, Physician discusses impact of COVID-19, vaccines on women's health 

…"Compared to non-pregnant women who have the same health and age, a COVID-infected woman is about 1.3 to 1.4 times more likely to end up in the hospital when she's pregnant," said Dr. Regan Theiler, a Mayo Clinic obstetrician, in a statement earlier this month.


Yahoo! LifeHeart disease affects men and women differently — do you know the signs? 

Heart disease is the leading cause of death among men and women in the U.S. In fact, heart disease claims more lives each year than all forms of cancer combined. 

…Women experiencing a heart attack may feel a shortness of breath, fatigue, nausea or even heartburn. These less dramatic symptoms cause women to wait more than 30 percent longer than men before they head to the hospital. And once there, women are less likely to be properly diagnosed. “Women come in with symptoms, and then we do a test, like an angiogram,” explains Dr. Sharonne N. Hayes, a professor of cardiovascular medicine at the Mayo Clinic and founder of the Women’s Heart Clinic. “But if the angiogram says, ‘Oh, there’s no blockages,’ we invalidate her. We say, ‘Well, it’s nothing. You’re just out of shape, you’re getting old, you’re menopausal.’”


Advisory BoardYoung-onset dementia is more than twice as common as previously thought, study finds

A new study published in JAMA Neurology found that young-onset dementia—or dementia that occurs before the age of 65—may be more prevalent than previously believed, reports Judy George for MedPage Today.

…In an accompanying editorial, David Knopman, a physician at Mayo Clinic, wrote that dementia may be underdiagnosed at younger ages due to reliance on passive surveillance methods to identify cases. He wrote that using passive surveillance increases the odds of "undercounting or overcounting cases owing to misdiagnosis (e.g., young-onset dementia as a psychiatric disorder or vice versa) or of noncontact by the young patient with dementia with the medical system."


MedPage Today, Q&A: Our (Very) Rapidly Evolving Understanding of NMOSD

A conversation with Mayo Clinic’s Eoin P. Flanagan, MB, BCh

Related: MedPage Today, NMOSD Tied to Insulin Resistance 

…"That suggests that these patients may be at higher risk of developing diabetes," says Eoin Flanagan, MB, BCh, a Mayo Clinic neurologist and NMOSD researcher. "I think we need to look closer at NMOSD patients and make sure that we’re not missing diabetes."


HuffPost, Delta Variant Will ‘Find Everybody Not Immune,’ Warns Mayo Clinic Vaccine Expert

“Don’t be deceived that ‘I got this far and I am OK.’ This is a very different variant. It will find you,” said Dr. Gregory Poland in a dire message.

NOTE: Full video interview with KARE 11, snippet from WCCO TV and written reprise.


Post-BulletinRochester lab's air purifier tests spotlighted on 'GMA'

On ABC's "Good America" show today, reporter Trevor Ault visited The Well Living Lab in the Minnesota Biobusiness Center in downtown Rochester to discuss a study about the effectiveness of air purifiers to control the spread of COVID-19 in classrooms. The Well Living Lab is a collaboration between Mayo Clinic and New York City-based Delos Living. The lab tests and develops products and services to make inside spaces, like offices and classrooms, healthier.


KTTCMayo Clinic study links COVID-19 with acute kidney injury

Health experts are giving another reason why people should get their COVID-19 vaccine. A Mayo Clinic study is finding a link between COVID-19 and acute kidney injury (AKI). "The acute kidney injury is very common in COVID-19 patients," Mayo clinic transplant surgeon, immunologist and senior author in recent study, Dr. Taimucin Taner said. "We know 50 percent of patients of COVID-19 in the ICU have acute kidney injury. That means people who had a normal kidneys prior to COVID-19. Unfortunately, a lot of these people die." …


KIMTMayo Clinic Researchers conduct a study with younger people getting COVID-19 

We've known since the beginning of the pandemic that people with underlying health conditions are at a higher risk of getting COVID-19. But a study conducted by researchers at Mayo Clinic shows is the risk factors for younger people with a specific condition were higher than their older counterparts. Professor of Epidemiology, Jennifer St. Sauver, said people younger than 45 had three times as great of an increased risk of severe COVID-19 if they had cancer, heart disease or blood disorders. Whereas, the risk of severe infection in older people with those same conditions was far less likely…


Med City BeatNew Rochester facility to offer support for people experiencing a mental health crisis

Adding a critical step to the emergency care continuum, the Southeast Regional Crisis Center will soon provide 24/7 immediate care for area individuals experiencing a mental health crisis.

… Dr. Bruce Sutor, a Mayo Clinic psychiatrist who serves as chair of the center's executive board, has been involved in the project since 2016 as a member of Governor Dayton’s mental health task force. During that time, the group determined the state had a shortage of mental health care facilities and Dr. Sutor worked with State Sen. David Senjem, of Rochester, to secure $5 million to pay for the center’s construction.  “I think it will connect people more efficiently with the services that they need and we hope that it will reduce stigma around mental illnesses,” said Sutor. “If you’re in crisis, it’s okay to seek help.” …


Eau Claire Leader-TelegramColds, flu likely to increase as COVID-19 precautions relax

In the La Crosse area, Mayo Clinic Health System medical resident Dr. Michael Bassett has not yet seen a prevalence of summer colds or viruses, but says in an increased incidence is likely, noting we are “social creatures — we’re shaking hands, we’re giving hugs,” especially now that many COVID restrictions have lifted and more are congregating.


WIZM-RadioMayo doctor in La Crosse sees silver lining in local COVID numbers

COVID-19 cases are rising around the U.S., and Tokyo is seeing a six-month high in virus cases just as the Olympics are about to open.  But places such as La Crosse are continuing to see low COVID numbers, due in part to high vaccination rates, according to Mayo doctor Joe Poterucha. “I think the mechanisms are put in place with the vaccine…social distancing, masking, a lot of areas of the country (are gonna) catch up, and eventually we’ll get to herd immunity and get through this thing,” says Poterucha.


WYTV-TV OhioDoctors urging racial minorities to donate bone marrow to save lives

In a bone marrow transplant, healthy blood stem cells go into your body to replace damaged or diseased bone marrow. Just as some people need a solid organ transplant, those in need of a bone marrow transplant have to find a matching donor.

… “If I have a patient that belongs to an ethnic minority, then I will only find a donor in the registry in about 20% to 25% of the time,” said Dr. Ernesto Ayala, with the Mayo Clinic…


Fierce HealthcareGoogle Cloud rolls out technology to map medical records data to FHIR standard 

… Mayo Clinic has been working with Google Cloud to bring data in from disparate sources, harmonize it to FHIR format, and analyze it in BigQuery. By automating this process, what used to take weeks can be done in an hour, enabling Mayo Clinic’s experts to now focus on solving critical problems in health rather than managing IT resources, health system executives said. “We were hitting a wall with our ability to innovate on-prem. By moving to the cloud we’re able to build tools more easily, at scale, in a way that takes advantage of technological advancements in security and privacy to remain at the forefront in data protection,” said Jim Buntrock, vice chair of information technology at Mayo Clinic in a statement.


Becker’s Hospital ReviewMayo Clinic: Eli Lilly, Regeneron antibodies help COVID-19 patients avoid the hospital

Two monoclonal antibodies administered separately were effective in preventing hospitalization among high-risk patients with COVID-19, according to a real-world study published July 19 in The Journal of Infectious Diseases and funded by Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic. The study observed patients who received bamlanivimab or casirivimab-imdevimab.


VeryWell HealthJohnson & Johnson Vaccine to Include Warning About Guillain-Barré Syndrome 

… Scientists don't yet know the exact cause of GBS, but it has been shown to be triggered by various viral infections. P. James Dyck, MD, a neurologist at the Mayo Clinic, says that because of the association between viral infections and GBS, he expected some COVID-19 vaccines might increase the risk of the syndrome as well. "It's an autoimmune disease that is often induced by a viral infection. Your body gets confused and there's an autoimmune attack on nerves," Dyck tells Verywell. There have been reports of COVID-19 being associated with Guillan-Barré syndrome. So, the expectation was that you would have some association with Guillain-Barré Syndrome and vaccinations for COVID-19."



HealthDayPfizer Vaccine Offers 88% Protection Against Delta Variant, But 2 Doses Needed

The Delta variant has developed seven different mutations in the coronavirus' "spike" protein, compared to the original Alpha strain, said Richard Kennedy, co-director of the Mayo Clinic Vaccine Research Group. "Some of these mutations help the virus infect cells, produce more virus in infected cells, or spread from person to person more easily," Kennedy said. "Several of these mutations occur at specific regions of the spike protein where antibodies bind and prevent the virus from entering the cell."


HealthDay1 in 20 Cases of Dementia Occurs in People Under 65

… In the United States, an estimated 175,000 people have the condition, accounting for roughly 3% of all dementia cases nationwide. In context, that means young-onset dementia is rare, said Dr. David Knopman, a neurologist who specializes in dementia care at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. But it's important for people, including doctors, to be aware that dementia can arise unusually early in life, Knopman said.


Medscape, 'New' Natriuretic Peptide Shows Unique Biomarker Potential

The biomarker C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) is under exploration as both a risk predictor and a target for new drug development for cardiovascular and renal conditions.

… "CNP represents a whole new exciting area of investigation in cardiovascular and renal medicine, from biology to biomarkers to therapeutics. This research area is on the verge of exponential growth, with CNP having diagnostic and therapeutic potential in heart failure, hypertension, and kidney disease," S. Jeson Sangaralingham, PhD, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, told Medscape Medical News.


HealioRepair of meniscus root tears may reduce arthritis, arthroplasty risk in select patients 

 Meniscus root tears should be recognized and diagnosed early to reduce the risk for arthritis and knee replacement, according to a presenter. “If you do not recognize [a meniscus root tear] — and this can happen in a short period of time, within 6 to 12 months — literally a normal joint space can become bone-on-bone arthritis and we see this happen quite frequently,” Aaron J. Krych, MD, of Mayo Clinic Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine, told Healio Orthopedics. “If you do not recognize it and treat it early then the natural history is for progression of arthritis, essentially.” …


NBC NewsCDC advisory group meets to review data on extra shots for immune-compromised 

Certain groups of patients may benefit from an additional dose of a vaccine.

… While the vaccines do still appear to cut the risk of hospitalization and death in immune-compromised people, "clearly there's a gap between those patients and those with normal immune systems," said an occupational medicine expert, Dr. Melanie Swift, co-chair of the Mayo Clinic's Covid-19 Vaccine Allocation and Distribution Workgroup.


ABC NewsResearchers find air filtration systems provide an added layer of protection in classrooms

Researchers tracked how air filters slow the spread of droplets in the air.

With many students heading back to school soon, researchers are gathering information that can help schools set COVID protocols. … “I think it just provides another layer of security for people,” Dr. Bruce Johnson of the Mayo Clinic told “GMA.”


KARE 11Mayo Clinic expert on why the unvaccinated and delta variant spell trouble

In Minnesota, 32% of people 16 and older are not vaccinated against COVID-19. … According to one of the world's leading vaccinologists, Dr. Gregory Poland of Mayo Clinic, we are entering a predicted fourth wave with a more spreadable delta variant. “We have watched this movie and it's ending three previous times,” said Poland. “We are now replaying the movie for the fourth time, the fourth surge in the U.S. This was entirely predictable.”


KTTCLocal experts discuss rise in overdose deaths

According to provisional data by the CDC, approximately 93,000 Americans lost their lives to an overdose in 2020, which is a nearly 30% increase year-over-year… "Unfortunately, all of the drugs are being tainted with fentanyl. Which is an ultra potent opioid," said Dr. Halena Gazelka, a pain specialist at Mayo Clinic. "People are getting more and more potent drugs. They're not aware that they're getting the fentanyl, typically, in the supply that they're getting. They don't know how to dose it." …


Neurology LivePathologically Confirmed CNS Demyelinating Disease Cognitive Outcomes Consistent With MS 

Total lesion volume and index lesion-related severity correlated with EDSS scores and cognitive performance, while volumetric cortical and subcortical gray matter correlated less strongly.

… Senior author Claudia F. Lucchinetti, MD, staff neurologist, Mayo Clinic, and colleagues collected data on 75 patients with pathologically confirmed CNS demyelinating disease, consistent with MS who underwent clinical assessment, standardized 3T-MRI brain, and cognitive battery. At follow-up, median duration since biopsy was 11 years.


HealioWomen more likely than men to experience CV effects of sleep loss

Sleep loss caused a significant increase in 24-hour and sleep-time BP among healthy young adults, particularly women, according to data published in Hypertension.

… “Over the past half century, sleep habits have changed dramatically. Augmented artificial lighting, shift and night work schedules, access to 24-hour services and the recent ubiquitous use of electronic entertainment and communication technology are thought to contribute to shortening habitual sleep duration,” Naima Covassin, PhD, assistant professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and colleagues wrote. “Currently, 35% of the U.S. adult population (equivalent to 80 million people) report sleeping 6 or less hours.”


HealioASH to present honorific awards

Margaret A. Shipp, MD, chair in lymphoma at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, and Stephen M. Ansell, MD, PhD, professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, will receive the Ernest Beutler Lecture and Prize.

NOTE: Read more about Dr. Ansell.


New York TimesWe Need to Know How Menopause Changes Women’s Brains 

This might turn out to be a crucial window to try to prevent Alzheimer’s and other chronic diseases that often accompany older age.

… Ideally, you would compare a large number of women who are experiencing them to women of the same age who are not. But by their 50s, most women have reached perimenopause; by their 60s, almost all are postmenopausal. Mosconi and her colleagues accounted for this by comparing women with age-matched men. But, as Stephanie Faubion, director of the Mayo Clinic Center for Women’s Health and medical director of the NAMS, points out, “Men’s brains are going to be different than women’s.”


KAALHealth experts explain why we wait on vaccines for those under 12

… Child vaccine trials started back in the spring, but will kids have one in time for going back to school? Local health experts say probably not. "These trials are a bit trickier maybe than the adult studies because when you look at the childhood age range the immune system of a six-month-old can be quite different than a six-year-old or a ten-year-old for example," Dr. Nipunie Rajapakse, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Mayo Clinic, said.


Healthcare IT NewsMayo Clinic's strategies for securing medical devices

The health system's manager of information security previews his upcoming HIMSS21 session, discussing the device ecosystem and best practices to defend it.

… In his upcoming HIMSS21 educational session, "Securing Medical Devices: Best Practices," Kurt A. Griggs, manager of information security at the Mayo Clinic, will discuss what the medical device ecosystem is like today, what some of the differences are between medical devices and traditional IT devices, the Mayo Clinic's approach to securing medical devices, and best practices the clinic has developed.


VICE, How to Take Care of Your Body if You Stand All Day at Work

… In a perfect world, no one would have to stand so long at work that it caused them physical pain. “I think we’re all now in roles that were kind of never designed for human beings—to be doing one thing repetitively all day, or to be standing in one position all day,” said Ahmad Nassr, an orthopedic spine surgeon at the Mayo Clinic.

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Tags: Aaron Krych, About, acute kidney injury, Ahmad Nassr, antibodies, arthritis, artificial intelligence, Awards, big data, biomarkers, bone marrow transplant, Brian Weinshenker, Bruce Johnson, Bruce Sutor, cardiovascular medicine, Claudia Lucchinetti, COVID-19, David Knopman, dementia, electronic health record, emergency medicine, Eoin Flanagan, epidemiology, Ernesto Ayala, Findings, Gregory Poland, Guillian-Barre Syndrome, Halena Gazelka, health disparities, heart disease, hiccups, Jennifer St. Sauver, Jim Buntrock, Joseph Poterucha, Mayo Clinic Health System, Melanie Swift, menopause, mental health, Michael Bassett, multiple sclerosis, Naima Covassin, neurology, News, Nipunie Rajapakse, opioids, Opportunities, orthopedic surgery, P. James Dyck, pain management, People, pregnancy, psychiatry, Regan Theiler, Richard Kennedy, Robert Jacobson, S. Jeson Sangaralingham, Sarah Charney, Sharonne Hayes, sleep medicine, speech pathology, Stephanie Faubion, Stephen Ansell, Taimucin Taner, vaccines, Well Living Lab, women's health

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