Genomics Biotechnology & Emerging Medical Technologies Institute e-News
Jul. 30, 2015

Fall Managed Care Forum: Register today!

Register today for the 2015 Fall Forum being held November 12-13, 2015 at The Bellagio in Las Vegas. Click here to visit the conference website.More

The gene for sweet: Why we don't all taste sugar the same way
Sugar gives the human brain much pleasure. But not everyone revels in cupcakes with an inch of frosting, or milkshakes blended with candy bars, though these crazily sugary treats are increasingly the norm. Scientists have known for a decade that cats and other felines don't have taste buds for sweetness at all. More

Study identifies 'major player' in skin cancer genes
Medical Xpress
A multidisciplinary team at Yale, led by Yale Cancer Center members, has defined a subgroup of genetic mutations that are present in a significant number of melanoma skin cancer cases. Their findings shed light on an important mutation in this deadly disease, and may lead to more targeted anti-cancer therapies. The study was published in Nature Genetics.More

Semen has controlling power over female genes and behavior
New Scientist
There's more to semen than sperm. In many animals, seminal fluid alters both the bodies and sometimes even the behavior of females. Human semen, too, triggers changes in the uterus, and might have wider effects on women, aimed at just one goal. “It’s all about maximizing the chances of the male reproducing,” says Sarah Robertson of the University of Adelaide in Australia. The effects are most striking in fruit flies: seminal fluid can make the females eat more, lay more eggs and be less receptive to other males.More

Just one 'all-nighter' can alter your genes
Popular Science
There’s a new reason to go to bed on time: late nights, in addition to a multitude of health effects, may lead to obesity and diabetes. Countless studies have shown the negative effects of sleep loss and sleep deprivation, but a new one from a Swedish team suggests that even one night of missed snoozing can have long-lasting effects on your genes.More

Medicare and the promise of personalized medicine
In the long run, personalized medicine may cut costs by eliminating inefficiencies, but getting there will take hefty upfront investment and that may be too much for a program like Medicare, the San Diego Union Tribune reports. "The practical question for Medicare is dealing with the short-term costs when the savings may not be realized for years," says Patricia Neuman, the Medicare policy director at the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.More

Technology helps personalized medicine, enabling epigenomic analysis with a mere 100 cells
A new technology that will dramatically enhance investigations of epigenomes, the machinery that turns on and off genes and a very prominent field of study in diseases such as stem cell differentiation, inflammation and cancer, is reported on today in the research journal Nature Methods. More

Decoding your 'instruction manual': Inside the amazing advances in personalized medicine
We each have a biological map — the human genome — that can tell doctors a lot about us. By understanding our genome, medical professionals can create a specific drug regimen to treat cancer, figure out why a treatment isn’t working or even tell what diseases might strike us in the future. More

The human brain and neurogenesis: Healthy neural stem cells and progenitor cells may help reverse brain damage
Medical Daily
The human brain is a “biological motherboard” made up of 100 billion neurons that give us the ability to speak, imagine and problem solve. Until recently, it was believed that we were born with most of the cells that make up our nervous system, and that the remaining ones developed during infancy. More

$114M grant to fund cutting-edge stem cell research at University of Toronto
Toronto Star
They’re the tiny wondrous building blocks of life that help scientists probe the mysteries of disease, and now stem cells — and the research that uses them — have won a $114 million gift from the Canadian government.More

Massive growth continues in mHealth market
By Scott Rupp
The mHealth market continues to see sizable gains, with its current valuation at more than $10.5 billion, according to a new report by Allied Market Research. The sector is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 33.5 percent from this year through 2020. According to the recent report, blood pressure monitors have the largest share of the global mHealth device market, followed by blood glucose monitors and cardiac monitors.More

Healthcare big data, accountable care spark vendor spending
Health IT Analytics
Healthcare big data analytics vendors hoping to explore the financial opportunities of predictive analytics, population health management, infrastructure development, and patient management are making some big investments in research and acquisitions, according to a number of market reports. From revenue cycle analytics to care coordination and value-based reimbursement, top innovators are moving quickly to remain in the lead of a rapidly advancing vendor community.More

Accountable care, ACA bring Medicare stability until 2030
Health IT Analytics
Medicare has plenty to celebrate as it turns fifty, including a new lease on its financial life thanks to accountable care initiatives that have extended its solvency for another few decades. As spending growth slows with an industry-wide emphasis on preventative care, pay-for-performance reimbursements, and population health management, CMS and the Medicare Trustees have announced that the Medicare trust fund will remain solvent until the year 2030.More

No more hidden sugar: FDA proposes new label rule
Sixty-five grams of added sugar. That's how much you'll find in a 20-ounce bottle of Coca-Cola. But can you picture 65 grams? It's about 16 teaspoons worth of the sweet stuff. The Food and Drug Administration wants to make it easier for Americans to track how much added sugars we're getting in the foods and beverages we choose.More

Some serious drug side effects not told to FDA within 15 days
Reuters via Fox News
Companies fail to report roughly 1 in 10 serious and unexpected medication side effects to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration within a 15-day window specified by federal regulations to protect patient safety, a study finds. Drug manufacturers are also less likely to disclose serious adverse events within this window when patient deaths are involved than when complications aren’t fatal, according to an analysis of 1.6 million side effect reports to the FDA from 2004 to 2014.More

FDA approve new daily pill for common skin cancer
Medical News Today
Taken in the form of a daily pill, Odomzo is marketed by Novartis AG — a Swiss pharma giant with U.S. headquarters in East Hanover, New Jersey. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration say a trial showed the drug shrank or wiped out tumors in 58 percent of patients treated.More

Why Blue Cross hates Anthem's Cigna deal
You’re hearing crickets from inside the headquarters of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association’s headquarters in the 200 block of North Michigan Avenue in Chicago when the topic of health plan mega mergers arises these days. That’s because it’s largest member company, Anthem, may be causing anxiety for fellow Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans across the country with its $54 billion purchase of Cigna.More

US high costs plague some state-run health insurance markets
The Associated Press via ABC News
State-run health insurance markets that offer coverage under President Barack Obama's health law are struggling with high costs and disappointing enrollment. These challenges could lead more of them to turn over operations to the federal government or join forces with other states. Hawaii's marketplace, the latest cautionary tale, was awarded $205 million in federal startup grants.More