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Home    About    Scholarships    Meetings    Publications    Resources Nov. 9, 2010
ASCLS eNewsBytes
Nov. 9, 2010
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Scientists turn patches of human skin into blood
LiveScience via MSNBC    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Got blood? Future patients who need transfusions for surgery and cancer treatments could get it from a patch of their own skin. Canadian researchers took the huge step of transforming adult human skin directly into blood, as detailed in the Nov. 7 issue of the journal Nature. That should provide a desperately needed new source of blood for not only surgical and cancer patients, but also for patients suffering from blood disorders such as anemia. More

Goal is for medical laboratories to enhance patient's
phlebotomy experience

The Vancouver Sun    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Ingrid Buchholz can see the surge coming. When she started out as a medical laboratory technologist, the demand in her field wasn't nearly as strong as it is now — or will be in the near future. "The baby boomers are retiring and we're going to have a loss in expertise," says Buchholz, supervisor of clinical education with Calgary Lab Services. "We know it's coming. The demand is going to increase. The only glitch we had was the downturn in the economy, but we're going to need (medical) technologists and assistants." While some people working in the field delayed retirement when the recession hit, they are starting to leave in larger numbers and, combined with an aging population in need of more medical tests, the pressure on labs is sure to rise. More

Study offers new clues to effective HIV vaccine
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Slight differences in five amino acids in a protein called HLA-B may explain why certain people resist the human immunodeficiency virus, U.S. researchers said in a study that lends new clues about how to make a vaccine to prevent AIDS. "For a long time, we've known that some people progress extremely rapidly when they get infected, and others can stay well for three decades and never need treatment and still look entirely well," said Dr. Bruce Walker of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard University, whose study appears in the journal Science. More

Related story:  Abnormal liver histology in HIV-positive patients is cause for concern (Medscape Medical News)

The Frankenstein tradition
TODAY online    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
"It's alive, it's moving, it's alive, it's alive!" So said Dr. Victor Frankenstein when his "creation" was complete. Researchers have long been fascinated with trying to create life, but mainly they have had to settle for crafting variations of living organisms via mutation or other techniques of genetic engineering. Researchers have synthesized the genome of a bacterium from scratch using chemical building blocks, and inserted it into the cell of a different variety of bacteria. The new genetic information "rebooted" its host cell and got it to function, replicate, and take on the characteristics of the done. In other words, a sort of synthetic organism had been created. More

Simple blood test may diagnose deadly Niemann-Pick type C disease
Science Daily    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A fatal genetic disorder that frequently takes years to diagnose may soon be detectable with a simple blood test, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the National Institutes of Health report in Science Translational Medicine. For patients with Niemann-Pick type C disease, the test will make it possible to begin treatment earlier, when it is more likely to improve quality of life and to further extend lives. More

Variants in PEAR1 associated with platelet responses to aspirin
Medscape Medical News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A genomewide association study investigating variations between individuals' responses to antiplatelet therapy reports a strong association between postaspirin collagen-induced platelet aggregation and a variant in platelet endothelial aggregation receptor 1 (PEAR1). The study was presented at the American Society of Human Genetics 60th Annual Meeting. Researchers followed this variant in several ethnic and health populations, noting differences in allelic frequency, as well as the effects of the variants in these populations. More

'Malaria hypothesis' supported by sickle cell gene proliferation chart
Medical Daily    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Scientists and researchers at the Oxford University supported by the KEMRI-Wellcome Trust have jointly compiled a comprehensive map presenting the incidence of the sickle cell gene globally. Global data shows that, the sickle cell gene is predominantly found in regions of high incidences of malaria. This provides ecological support to the supposition that the potentially lethal gene, does not diminish by the process of natural selection by protecting against malaria. More

Drug combination demonstrates proof of concept in controlling HCV
Medscape Medical News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A four-week lead in the dosing of two oral small-molecule drugs was able to reduce the level of hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA to undetectable levels in a small number of patients before either ribavirin or an interferon/RBV combination was added to the regimen. More
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