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GENOMICS


Pulling the strings of our genetic puppetmasters: Engineers gain control of gene activity
Phys.org
Duke researchers have developed a new method to precisely control when genes are turned on and active. The new technology allows researchers to turn on specific gene promoters and enhancers — pieces of the genome that control gene activity — by chemically manipulating proteins that package DNA. This web of biomolecules that supports and controls gene activity is known as the epigenome.
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Team develops method to better identify genes involved in diseases
Medical Xpress
Scientists at A*STAR's Genome Institute of Singapore have developed a new technique that simplifies the task of identifying the precise DNA mutations that cause disease, which lays the groundwork for the development of new drugs and new ways of diagnosing diseases.
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SPONSORED CONTENT


Scientists identify small RNA molecule that can suppress cancer-causing genes in GBM
News-Medical.net
Northwestern Medicine scientists have identified a small RNA molecule called miR-182 that can suppress cancer-causing genes in mice with glioblastoma mulitforme, a deadly and incurable type of brain tumor. While standard chemotherapy drugs damage DNA to stop cancer cells from reproducing, the new method stops the source that creates those cancer cells: Genes that are overexpressing certain proteins.
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BIOTECH/DIAGNOSTICS/PERSONALIZED MEDICINE


Study: Genes linked to breast, ovarian cancers act differently in each woman
HealthDay News via U.S. News & World Report
Women who carry mutations in certain genes face a much higher risk of breast and ovarian cancers, but the impact varies depending on the type and location of the mutation, new research finds. Film star Angelina Jolie, who carries a BRCA1 mutation, weighed that risk last month when she announced that she'd had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed, almost two years after undergoing a double mastectomy.
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How biotech is revolutionizing personalized medicine
Wired via Genetic Literacy Project
Over the last several decades, DNA — the genetic material of life as we know it – has completed a remarkable scientific cycle. In 1953, it was a mysterious blur on an X-ray diffractogram. By the 1970s, it was possible to determine the sequence of short nucleotide chains. And now, a scientist can produce her own genetic code of choice with the click of a mouse.
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REGENERATIVE MEDICINE


Tiny hair follicle offers big clues about the life and death of stem cells
Phys.org
Inside the microscopic world of the mouse hair follicle, Yale Cancer Center researchers have discovered big clues about how stem cells regenerate and die. These findings, published in the journal Nature, could lead to a better understanding of how the stem cell pool is maintained or altered in tissues throughout the body.
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Team discovers novel mechanism controlling lung cancer stem cell growth
Medical Xpress
Lung cancer is the second most common type of cancer and the number one cause of cancer-related mortality. It is estimated that more than 158,000 people will die from lung cancer in the United States this year. Many scientists believe that targeting a type of cell called a cancer stem cell may be necessary to completely cure lung cancer.
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Human stem cells shape a new approach to autism research
LiveScience
Autism spectrum disorder is a devastating human condition, a lifelong developmental disability that is confounding both in life — where it seems to appear suddenly and without warning in young children — and in the lab, where it steadfastly defies straightforward investigation and understanding.
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EMERGING MEDICAL TECHNOLOGIES


Leveraging social technologies as healthcare business solutions
By Christina Thielst
Last year, a highly respectable group of individuals representing a diverse group of healthcare organizations contributed to a book published by HIMSS — "Applying Social Media Technologies in Healthcare Environments." The contributors represented large healthcare systems, statewide public health departments, community hospitals, clinics, physicians, researchers and a patient. However, the stories of innovation using social technologies to solve business challenges will also be appreciated by nontechies alike.
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Mobile health apps: If you build them, will they come?
HIT Consultant
It’s hard to find a pharma or medical device company these days that doesn’t have at least one mobile app in development. And now that, as of February 2015, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued guidance on which apps need to be regulated and which ones don’t, it will be interesting to see if this almost exponential development trend continues.
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New online tools help states use health IT
Health Data Management
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has launched online tools and resources to help states in the State Innovation Models initiative improve care and lower costs. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services funds the State Innovation Models initiative, which supports states in planning and implementing statewide health transformation focusing on Medicare, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program beneficiaries.
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ACCOUNTABLE CARE ORGANIZATIONS


Growth and dispersion of ACOs in 2015
Health Affairs Blog
In January, an additional 89 provider organizations joined the Medicare Shared Savings Program as accountable care organizations. While this year’s new entrants are a smaller cohort than those that joined in 2013 and 2014, they represent a continuation of the expansion of the accountable care movement.
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FDA: NEW TREATMENTS AND TECHNOLOGY


FDA offers guidance on developing opioids less prone to be abused
The Wall Street Journal
The Food and Drug Administration issued a set of suggestions to help the drug industry develop new opioid painkillers that potentially would be less susceptible to abuse than current pills. The federal agency said in its guidance document that it hopes to encourage painkiller formulations that are more difficult to crush, inject or snort to produce a more intense high.
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ALS patients press FDA for quick access to controversial biotech drug
The Washington Post
For people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which attacks the body’s motor neurons and renders a person unable to move, swallow or breathe, the search for an effective treatment has been a crushing disappointment. The only drug available for the disease, approved two decades ago, typically extends life just a few months.
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MANAGED HEALTHCARE NEWS


Patients with mental illness no better off under Obamacare
U.S. News & World Report
Under President Barack Obama's healthcare law, which aimed to end health insurance discrimination for mental health services, an estimated 62 million patients now have better coverage. But a new report from the National Alliance on Mental Illness shows the policies still have a long way to go before they can make a difference in the lives of people living with mental illness.
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Mobile application testing a challenge in healthcare
mHealthIntelligence
When it comes to mobile applications, the testing period is one of the most crucial. Launching an app that is not complete or filled with bugs is the fastest ways to ruin the reputation of an app and the company behind it. However, there is a difference between testing a game and testing a healthcare app.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Music physically activates genes for learning and memory (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News)
In Iceland's DNA, new clues to disease-causing genes (The New York Times)
How 3 providers benefit from telemedicine (FierceHealthIT)
Premature aging of stem cell telomeres, not inflammation, linked to emphysema (Medical Xpress)
Stem cells augment rotator cuff repairs (Medscape)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.
 

Genomics Biotech and Emerging Medical Technologies Institute eBrief
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2635
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Natalie Rodriguez, Senior Content Editor, 469.420.2635   
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