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3D Human Skin Maps Aid Study of Relationships Between Molecules, Microbes and Environment

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences produced 3D maps of molecular and microbial variations across the body. These maps provide a baseline for studies of the interplay between the molecules that make up our skin, our microbiomes, our personal hygiene routines and other environmental factors. The study, published March 30 by PNAS, may help further our understanding of the skin’s role in human health and disease.

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Researchers Develop New Potential Drug for Rare Leukemia

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Researchers at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center have developed a new drug that shows potential in laboratory studies against a rare type of acute leukemia. And additional studies suggest the same compound could play a role in prostate cancer treatment as well.

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Family Income, Parental Education Related to Brain Structure in Children and Adolescents

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Characterizing associations between socioeconomic factors and children’s brain development, a team of investigators reports correlative links between family income and brain structure. Relationships between the brain and family income were strongest in the lowest end of the economic range – suggesting that interventional policies aimed at these children may have the largest societal impact.

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MRI Based on a Sugar Molecule Can Tell Cancerous from Noncancerous Cells

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Imaging tests like mammograms or CT scans can detect tumors, but figuring out whether a growth is or isn’t cancer usually requires a biopsy to study cells directly. Now results of a Johns Hopkins study suggest that MRI could one day make biopsies more effective or even replace them altogether by noninvasively detecting telltale sugar molecules shed by the outer membranes of cancerous cells.

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New Study Recommends Early Introduction of Peanuts to Prevent Allergies

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“Bottom line, early introduction of peanuts decreases the frequency of developing a peanut allergy,” says Dr. Shah, who treats many children as well as adults with peanut allergies in her Gottlieb Memorial Hospital practice. “The estimated prevalence of peanut allergy in America is 1.4 to 3 percent and the numbers are growing so this news offers a potential real solution to prevention.”

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Prenatal Exposure to Common Air Pollutants Linked to Cognitive and Behavioral Impairment

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Researchers have found a powerful relationship between prenatal polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) exposure and disturbances in parts of the brain that support information processing and behavioral control.

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Scientists Coax Stem Cells to Form 3D Mini Lungs

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Scientists at the University of Michigan Health System have coaxed stem cells to grow the first three-dimensional mini lungs. The 3D structures mimic the complexity of human lungs and may serve as a discovery tool for lung diseases or new therapies.

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Mayo Clinic Study of Thousands of Brains Reveals Tau as Driver of Alzheimer’s Disease

By examining more than 3,600 postmortem brains, researchers at Mayo Clinic’s campuses in Jacksonville, Florida, and Rochester, Minnesota, have found that the progression of dysfunctional tau protein drives the cognitive decline and memory loss seen in Alzheimer’s disease.

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Exercise Linked to Improved Erectile and Sexual Function in Men

Men who exercise more have better erectile and sexual function, regardless of race, according to a recent study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

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Changes in a Blood-Based Molecular Pathway Identified in Alzheimer’s Disease

New research identifies a bridge between the mechanisms that spur the destruction of neurons in Alzheimer’s disease - accumulation of the amyloid-β peptide (the main component of plaques found in Alzheimer’s patient brains) and chronic inflammation..