Family history misses identifying individuals with high genetic risk of CVD or cancer

Certain genetic changes, termed “pathogenic variants,” substantially increase risk for cardiovascular disease and cancer–the leading causes of death–but testing to identify individual carriers is not part of current clinical practice. Now a team led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) determined that nearly 1% of the population carry such pathogenic variants. These individuals were…

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Parkinson’s dyskinesia mechanism explained

JUPITER, Fla.–May 1, 2020–Many people with Parkinson’s disease eventually develop debilitating movements called dyskinesia, a side effect of their much-needed dopamine replacement medication. The mechanism underlying this unwanted side effect has been unknown, until now. An international collaboration led by Scripps Research, Florida has found a key cause, and with it, potentially, a new route…

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Rheumatoid arthritis patients on medicare seeing increased costs for specialty medications

After a sharp drop in out-of-pocket costs between 2010 and 2011, Medicare patients who use specialty biologic medications for rheumatoid arthritis have seen higher out-of-pocket spending for those same drugs because of gradual price increases, a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association Open finds. Led by Vanderbilt University School of Medicine…

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Schizophrenia drug combined with radiation shows promise in treating deadly brain tumors

Researchers at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and colleagues have found that adding a drug once commonly used to treat schizophrenia to traditional radiation therapy helped improve overall survival in mice with glioblastoma, one of the deadliest and most difficult-to-treat brain tumors. The findings, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, show…

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Infectious disease modeling study casts doubt on impact of Justinianic plague

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Many have claimed the Justinianic Plague (c. 541-750 CE) killed half of the population of Roman Empire. Now, historical research and mathematical modeling challenge the death rate and severity of this first plague pandemic. Researchers Lauren White, PhD and Lee Mordechai, PhD, of the University of Maryland’s National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC),…

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