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Medicine

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Xenopus frog, Proteomics, Harvard Medical School, marc kirschner, marc presler, Fertilization, Cell Cycle

Making Waves

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Researchers reveal in detail how fertilization triggers destruction of a small number of proteins, which releases the “brakes” on an egg’s cell cycle. Simultaneously, vast quantities of proteins are rapidly secreted from the egg to help prevent fertilization by multiple sperm cells.

Medicine

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Harvard Medical School, Medical Education, Cairo, Egypt, International Education

Education Beyond Borders

Harvard Medical School will offer online education to doctors-in-the-making and practicing clinicians affiliated with a pediatric cancer hospital in Egypt, the 57357 Children’s Cancer Hospital in Cairo.

Medicine

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Drug Combinations, Combination Therapy, drug synergy, Cancer Treatment, Peter Sorger, independent action, Adam Palmer, Harvard Medical School

“Bet Hedging” Explains the Efficacy of Many Combination Cancer Therapies

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Benefits of many cancer drug combinations are not due to drug synergy, but to “bet hedging.” Combinations give each patient multiple chances of responding to at least one drug, increasing survival within patient populations. Findings suggest new ways to improve the design of combination therapies.

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Data Analysis, Weather And Joint Pain, Medicare records

That Feeling in Your Bones

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Rainy weather has long been blamed for achy joints and back pain. Past research has yielded mixed results. New analysis tracking visits to the doctor with daily rainfall found no relationship between the two.

Medicine

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Oxytocin, Hippocampus, Harvard Medical School

How a Seahorse-Shaped Brain Structure May Help Us Recognize Others

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Study in mice reveals a brain circuit that regulates social memory formation and recognition. Results shed light on brain’s ability to reconcile conflicting social stimuli, and shed light on anomalies in social behavior seen in neurodevelopmental, neurologic and psychiatric disorders

Medicine

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Disease, Gut Bacteria, microbiomes

Needle in a Haystack

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Overcoming a major hurdle in microbiome research, scientists have developed a method to elucidate cause-effect relationships between gut bacteria and disease. The approach could help identify disease-modulating microbes and open doors to precision-targeted therapies derived from microbial molecules.

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When the Doctor's Away

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Substitute, for-hire physicians commonly care for hospitalized patients when doctors are sick or away. Information about outcomes is largely lacking, but a new study brings some much-needed insight. Results show no differences in 30-day mortality rates among patients treated by temporary physicians.

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Four-Fold Jump in Deaths in Opioid-Driven Hospitalizations

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New study finds that death rates for those hospitalized for opioid-related conditions in the U.S. have quadrupled since 2000. Worst toll seen among patients who were low-income, white, under age 65 and on Medicare, and the severity of opioid misuse leading to hospitalization has increased.

Medicine

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Pay For Performance, Medicare, Outcomes, patient outcomes

Pay-for-Performance Fails to Perform

The first large Medicare pay-for-performance program for doctors and medical practices, which ran between 2013 and 2016, failed to deliver on its central promise to increase value of care for patients. The program may have also exacerbated health disparities by inadvertently shifting payments from physicians caring for sicker, poorer patients to those caring for healthier, richer ones. Important similarities between the failed pay-for-performance prototype and its successor suggest the latter may not be sound policy.

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Malaria, Parasite, Infection

Parasites Suck It Up

Depletion of a fatty molecule in human blood propels malaria parasites to stop replicating and causing illness in people and instead to jump ship to mosquitoes to continue the transmission cycle, according to a new study by an international research team.







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