ASCLS eNewsBytes
Feb. 14, 2012

Need to biopsy at metastatic breast cancer relapse?
Taking a biopsy of metastatic cancer that has spread beyond the breast can lead to a change in systemic therapy, and thus management, in some patients, according to a prospective study published online Nov. 28, in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Canadian researchers biopsied metastases to see if the receptor status was "discordant" with the original status of the primary breast tumor. More

Clinical laboratory managers and pathologists can expect more companion diagnostics in responses to advances in molecular knowledge about various diseases
Dark Daily
Recently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared two products for market, one of which may be of particular interest to anatomic pathologists. The first product is a therapeutic drug for the treatment of late-stage skin cancer. The second product is a companion clinical laboratory test that will be used to identify skin cancer patients most likely to benefit from this new drug. This development is attracting attention by experts watching the molecular diagnostics marketplace. That's because both products were developed by the same company on a tight timeline and this process is likely to be much studied by other pharma companies and genetic test developers. More

Creating the perfect laboratory
Laboratory News
Oxford University’s new research laboratories have been designed by Make Architects and Nightingale Associates – Laboratory News learns what goes into making the perfect lab. This article explore what it takes to remain the world's highest ranked medical research facility?More

Pressurising red blood cells for information
Royal Society of Chemistry
Scientists in Canada have developed a method to study the changes in red blood cells caused by the most common malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Current methods to measure deformability are complicated or not sensitive enough.More

Don't screen for adrenal hyperplasia in preemies
Reuters via Medscape
French researchers say that in preterm newborns, routine screening for adrenal hyperplasia due to 21-hydroxylase deficiency (21-OHD) isn't worthwhile because the positive predictive value is very low in these babies. Also, they say, preemies in neonatal ICUs are generally observed so closely that any adrenal crisis is likely to be noticed. More

Artificial immune cell treatment for melanoma aims for human trials
in 2013

MedCity News
A new treatment for cancer that uses artificial immune cells to trigger the body to kill cancerous cells will raise a series A round this spring and look to an investigational new drug application next year. NexImmune is an early stage biopharmaceutical company engineering artificial cells that can stimulate the immune system to treat cancer, transplant rejection, autoimmunity and infectious diseases.More

Lead an empowered life as a clinical laboratorian
Formularies might be coming to a lab near you

Advance for Medical Laboratory Professionals
We are all familiar with the concept of generic versus brand name for medication. Once a pharmaceutical manufacturer loses its patent exclusivity to make and sell a drug (at an inflated price, usually), other manufacturers can make the same drug. Competition drives down the price and consumers benefit from getting a certain medication of the same efficacy at a price less than the brand name drug.More

Protein starves HIV, thus protecting cells
Medical News Today
A protein called SAMHD1 has been found to starve HIV in cells so that it cannot do anything, thus making the cell resistant to HIV infection, researchers at New York University Langone Medical Center reported in Nature Immunology. The authors explained that their discovery could pave the way for new therapeutic research at halting or slowing the HIV's progression to AIDS.More

Mystery disease kills thousands in Central America
The Associated Press via Bioscience Technology
A mysterious epidemic is devastating the Pacific coast of Central America, killing more than 24,000 people in El Salvador and Nicaragua since 2000 and striking thousands of others with chronic kidney disease at rates unseen virtually anywhere else. Scientists say they have received reports of the phenomenon as far north as southern Mexico and as far south as Panama. More

The quest for pediatric reference ranges
Clinical Laboratory News
Studies funded by the American Association for Clinical Chemistry are now underway on early samples from the National Children’s Study, an effort that leaders in the lab community hope will jump-start collaboration with diagnostic companies, commercial labs, and academia to improve pediatric reference ranges.More

Genetic Parkinson's disease brain cells made in lab
Scientists in the U.S. have successfully made human brain cells in the lab that are an exact replica of genetically caused Parkinson's disease. The breakthrough means they can now see exactly how mutations in the parkin gene cause the disease in an estimated one in 10 patients with Parkinson's. More

Alzheimer's pathology may spread along synapses
A new study supports the concept that Alzheimer's disease starts in the brain's memory center and spreads out from there to other parts of the brain. The study team observed that in mice, tau pathology begins in the entorhinal cortex and then propagates along neuroanatomically linked pathways and from neuron to neuron across synapses. More

Starve a virus, feed a cure?
A protein that protects some of our immune cells from the most common and virulent form of HIV works by starving the virus of the molecular building blocks that it needs to replicate, according to research published online in Nature Immunology.More

Trial and tribulations of lab culture
For many grad students, postdocs, and PIs, the lab in which they work represents a type of "home away from home," replete with similar territorial issues, responsibilities and "family dynamics." And just as there are many different types of families, there are many different types of lab cultures. It may be competitive or more collaborative. More

How infections call for more blood
The University of Auckland via Science Alert
Research at The University of Auckland in New Zealand has shed light on an area of medicine which has intrigued the international scientific community for decades. Scientists at the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences have identified a molecular mechanism which links infection to an increase in rare blood stem cells in an animal. More

Male genes may explain higher heart disease risk
The New York Times
Although heart disease is the leading killer of women as well as of men, two heart disease patients out of every three are male, and heart disease strikes men 10 to 15 years earlier than it does women. No one really knows why. Now, a new study reports that part of the answer may lie on the Y chromosome, the one chromosome unique to men.More