May 2013 Archive - Penn Medicine News Blog

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Tweaking T Cells for Transplants

Hancock Blood blog post image May 13
Bone marrow transplants, like the high-profile match between the son of heavyweight fighter Evander Holyfield and 19-year-old Nashville native Darian Craig, profiled in People magazine earlier this month, run the risk of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), a life-threatening complication where the donor cells attack the patient’s own cells. BMT procedures replace...

Smiles Break Past Sorrow at Camp Erin - Philadelphia

"Imagine the sound of this gong is like a rocket ship that can send messages up to your loved one," said drummer Josh Robinson, "take 10 seconds to think of your message, and when I ring the gong, it'll reach your loved one." This therapeutic music class was one of...

That Was Then, and This Is Now. Or Is It?

I hold the publication in my hands. It features an article on “chronobiology” and sleep studies. It includes some faculty newsmakers, such as Albert J. Stunkard, MD, professor of Psychiatry, one of Penn’s well-known experts on sleep disorders; Peter Quinn, DMD, MD, a leader in surgically treating the most painful...

A Look Back, in Photos: The Past Month or So Around Penn Medicine

Though my Penn Medicine ID card says 'Digital Communications Editor,' I've worn a few hats here — including in-house photographer. Because it's an aspect of the job that I love, I'd like to share some of the photos I've taken over the past month or so, giving readers a glimpse...

Angelina Jolie’s Cancer Prevention Surgery Puts Basser Research Center for BRCA In National Spotlight This week, when Oscar-winning actress and humanitarian Angelina Jolie revealed that she underwent surgery to remove her breasts after learning that she carries one of the BRCA gene mutations that put her at high risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, the news hit home here at the University of Pennsylvania. Just a year ago, Penn announced the creation of the Basser Research Center for BRCA, which was made possible by a $25 million gift from Penn alums Mindy and Jon Gray, in honor of Mindy Gray’s sister, Faith Basser, who died of ovarian cancer at age 44. As the only center in the United States devoted solely to research on prevention and treatment for cancers related to BRCA mutations, Jolie’s story turned a spotlight on the important work in progress there, and the experiences of the many other families with similar cancer risks.

2013 Philadelphia Science Festival Recap

PSF 2013 Carnival Penn tent village 1
Penn Medicine faculty, staff, and students shared their love and knowledge of biomedical science with families, students, and the general public at a dozen events during the 2013 Philadelphia Science Festival.

Penn Medicine Graduation: What’s Next for the Class of 2013?

Yesterday was the Perelman School of Medicine’s graduation at the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts, and for most of the students that means goodbye medical school and hello residency. So where will the 84 men and 76 women be heading as they embark on the next phase of their lives?...

Trying to Give Trauma Docs a Breather

Rhonda at outreach cropped
“I want to put trauma doctors out of business.” Rhonda Holmstrom, Trauma Outpatient & Injury Prevention Coordinator, says this with a smile, knowing it’s not a realistic goal, but she –- and other members of the trauma team at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania -– are reaching out...

Penn Medicine CAREs Grant Helps Prevent Youth Violence

Most Penn Medicine CAREs grants expand existing programs or start new ones that support community health. In the case of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) Violence Intervention Program, a CAREs grant extends a program already making a difference that may not have received enough funding otherwise. After a young...

Tau is its Own Worst Enemy

Cohen Nature Struct Mol Bio Blog post schematic Apr 13
In an update to recent research, Todd Cohen, Virginia Lee, and the Penn CNDR team have found an unusual behavior in the protein tau. It is literally its own worst enemy - tau is actually an enzyme that adds an acetyl group to itself, a process called autoacetylation.

Summer To-Do List: Stock Up on Sunscreen and Get Checked for Skin Cancer

It's Monday afternoon after another warm, sunny weekend here in Philadelphia, and that familiar reddish tint of sunburn is on faces all around me. As we emerge from a particularly gloomy and cold winter, people have been embracing every opportunity to spend time outside, but we're apparently out of practice...

Streamlining Cancer Care: Affordability and Accountability

As policymakers, patients and healthcare clinicians begin to find their way through the maze of changes outlined and endorsed under the Affordable Care Act, some providers are calling for further restructuring to address what they call missed opportunities in the legislation. While the guidelines aim to improve the quality of...

Science Communications, One White-Board Video at a Time

FitzGerald Nat Med mouse side by side image Nov 12
In an online video series, Florie Charles, a doctoral student at the University of California at San Francisco, and founder of Youreka Science, simply uses a white board and colored markers (and occasionally a small cut out mouse -- animal, not computer peripheral) to explain findings from recent papers in an accessible, fresh, and engaging way. One of her newest videos happens to feature a recent publication from the lab of Garret FitzGerald, MD, FRS, director of Penn Medicine's Institute of Translational Medicine and Therapeutics.

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