In the news / Precision Medicine

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Our genes can have the effect of increasing our risk for certain diseases, or at it turns out, sometimes they can protect us from them. This has turned out to be the case with a Colombian woman in her 70s who should have developed Alzheimer’s disease by her mid-40s, but has an identified a mutation in her genes that is keeping her from not experiencing dementia.
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Dr. Jennifer Barton, University of Arizona professor of biomedical engineering and director of the BIO5 Institute, has been appointed to the National Advisory Council for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, part of the National Institutes of Health. The council advises the leadership of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, or NIBIB, on policies and priorities related to research, training and health information dissemination in the areas of biomedical imaging and engineering.
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Dr. Louise Hecker, research lead for a College of Medicine – Tucson lab studying highly selective Nox4 small molecule inhibitors for the treatment of fibrotic disorders, was selected to receive the Innovator of the Year Award in the academia category at the annual Governor's Celebration of Innovation Awards.
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UA COM-P researchers have discovered a function in a pro-inflammatory protein that could play an important part in improving current and future therapeutics for the herpes virus. Senior author on the study Dr. Melissa Herbst-Kralovetz, is part of the first group of researchers to detect IL-36g, a protein which is an
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Because of routine PSA testing in older men, cancers that might have gone undetected without ever causing health problems were identified and treated. Dr. Richard Ablin, the pioneer who discovered PSA recognizes some variables to prostate cancer screening that require close attention when evaluating men
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An easy-to-use, self-administered blood test that quickly could evaluate a person’s radiation exposure would help triage emergency medical treatment in the event of a radiological or nuclear event. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services long has sought ways to monitor a population’s radiation
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Leonard Lauder, chairman emeritus of Estee Lauder, called Cancer Center founder David Alberts in 2016, asking questions about ovarian cancer treatment. Alberts says Lauder told him a longtime family friend needed help fighting it. Albert's team responded by researching a successful treatment that put the
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Director of the UA Center for Accelerated Biomedical Innovation, UA COM-T professor, and BIO5 member Dr. Marvin Slepian, has introduced a high-tech device that could change the way we help track, treat, and prevent disease. Manufactured by a company in Boston, BioStamp is a skin patch sensor that
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A group of UAHS researchers including BIO5 members Drs. Rick Schnellmann, Roberta Brinton, Todd Vanderah, Monica Kraft, Scott Boitano, Andrew Capaldi, Michael Worobey, Louise Hecker, and Julie Ledford participated in the “Discovering New Medicines in Arizona” one-day summit, hosted by the AZ Center for Drug Discovery and the UA Cancer Center. The event sought to highlight key areas of research that seek to treat diseases prevalent in Arizona while establishing collaborations that enable success for future research and discoveries.
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A team of UA researchers including Director of the Evelyn F Mcknight Brain Institute Dr. Carol Barnes, and UA Physiology professor Dr. Meredith Hay, both BIO5 faculty, have proposed a precision aging model designed to help researchers better understand and treat age-related cognitive decline on an individual level.
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Most studies have shown correlations between the microbiome and the effectiveness of drugs, but a recent study is one of the first to dig into how these associations work. Better understanding the causal links in drug responses may mean scientists are able to do more with our gut microbes.  BIO5 faculty and UA College of Medicine-Phoenix associate professor Dr. Melissa Herbst-Kralovetz, thinks this may pave the way for doctors to choose the most effective drug for individual patients.
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To lower the need for invasive procedures, UA COM-T Pharmacology and Toxicology professor Dr. Bernard Futscher, worked to develop a new blood test to detect most major cancers. The research and development was completed through the recently launched startup, DesertDx, created to bring the invention to doctors and their patients.
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Dr. Clara Curiel, clinical director of the SCI and leader of the UA Cancer Center cutaneous oncology team uses chemoprevention to slow, stop, or reverse the progression of skin cancer. Chemoprevention strategies can be employed at many points in time, starting when skin already has been damaged by UV radiation.
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A $15 million gift from Dr. Andrew Weil will both name the UA's Center for Integrative Medicine as well as establish two endowed chairs and an endowed fund for the program. The inaugural holder of the Andrew Weil Endowed Chair for Research in Integrative Medicine is Dr. Esther Sternberg, BIO5 member and Director of Research for the Andrew Weil Center for Integrative Medicine since 2012.
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Within the next 10 years, precision medicine - treatment based on an individual's genetics, lifestyle and environment - could help health-care providers better treat all diseases. BIO5 Faculty Dr. Kenneth Ramos, an internationally recognized expert on genetics and genomic medicine, will deliver the conference keynote address for the 17th Annual Living Healthy With Arthritis Conference.
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Researchers in the UA College of Medicine have invented a new class of non-opioid compounds to treat pain. The UA has licensed the compounds to startup Regulonix, co-founded by Vijay Gokhale a research scientist at the BIO5 Institute.

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Studying the aging brain's susceptibility to Alzheimer's Disease, BIO5's Dr. Roberta Brinton discovered dramatic differences between how female and male brains generate the energy they need as the brain ages.
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More so than others, obese asthma patients struggle with control of their disease — and symptoms that worsen with time. A duo of BIO5 Institute researchers, Dr. Monica Kraft and Dr. Julie Ledford, found an explanation and have begun developing a therapy to address it.
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The Associate Director of BIO5, Dr. Yves Lussier, was one of multiple UA faculty members who attended the Precision Medicine Initiative Summit held in Washington D.C. The Summit was part of a nationwide Precision Medicine Initiative in which UA will take part to assist in pioneering a new model of patient-powered research that promises to accelerate biomedical discoveries.
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A UA clinician team made up of BIO5 members Drs. Julie Ledford Monica Kraft, use genetics as a guide focused on turning research into new treatments for asthma and other lung diseases. They have discovered that genetic mutations in a protein associated with asthma can affect a person’s susceptibility to a variety of lung diseases — and could lead to new treatments.