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Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of Aug. 24

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

“Sleep drunkenness” more prevalent than previously thought: A phenomenon known as “sleep drunkenness” may be more prevalent than previously thought, affecting as many as 1 in 7 adults, Stanford researchers report in a new study.

Our aging immune systems are still in business, but increasingly thrown out of balance: With advancing age, people grow increasingly vulnerable to infection, autoimmune disease and cancer. New research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests why that may come about.

New painkiller could tackle pain, without risk of addiction: A new pain-reliever may soon be on the scene that lacks the “high” of opioids and the cardiac-risk of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDs) drugs such as aspirin. A paper on the development was published this week in Science Translational Medicine.

Civilization and its dietary (dis)contents: Do modern diets starve our gut-microbial community?: In a review paper published last week in Cell Metabolism, Stanford married-microbiologist couple Justin Sonnenburg, PhD, and Erica Sonnenburg, PhD, warn that modern civilization and its dietary contents may be putting our microbial gut communities, and our health, at risk.

Biodesign fellows take on night terrors in children: Stanford’s Biodesign Program trains researchers, clinicians and engineers to be medical-technology innovators during its year-long fellowship. This piece highlights the work of several clinicians who have developed and are now testing a clinical method to treat night terrors in children.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

What are the consequences of sleep deprivation?: Brandon Peters, MD, an adjunct clinical faculty member at the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine, explains how lack of sleep can negatively affect a person’s well-being in this Huffington Post piece.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of July 27

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

Losing Jules: Breaking the silence around stillbirth: On the anniversary of her son’s death, a San Francisco mom writes a powerful piece on stillbirth. “I had no idea that in this age of medical advancement 1 in every 167 babies in the United States is stillborn,” writes Polly Styker. “Just over half a percent (.6 percent) doesn’t sound like a lot – until it’s you.”

How to get a student-friendly room for under $100: In the latest installment of SMS Unplugged, medical student Natalia Birgisson shows incoming students how to set up their room for under $100.

The woman in the elevator: dealing with death in medical training: In a recent SMS Unplugged entry, medical student Jennifer DeCoste-Lopez shares her insight on dealing with death and loss in medical training.

Stanford partnering with Google [x] and Duke to better understand the human body: Researchers at Stanford, in collaboration with Duke University and Google [x], are planning a comprehensive initiative to understand the molecular markers that are key to health and the changes in those biomarkers that may lead to disease. The project was featured in a Wall Street Journal article last week.

Induced pluripotent stem cell mysteries explored by Stanford researchers: Stanford researchers answer fundamental questions about the use of using pluripotent stem cells in a clinical setting in two new papers in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. The work was led by Stanford cardiologist Joseph Wu, MD, PhD, director of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

Researchers explain how “cooling glove” can improve exercise recovery and performance: The “cooling glove,” a device that helps people cool themselves quickly by using their hand to dissipate heat, was created more than a decade ago by Stanford biologists Dennis Grahn and Craig Heller, PhD. This video demonstrates the device and explains how it can be used to dramatically improve exercise recovery and performance.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of July 20

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

What other cultures can teach us about managing postpartum sleep deprivation: A recent Huffington Post piece from the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine examined how mothers in other countries cope with postpartum sleep deprivation.

Stanford bioengineer develops a 50-cent paper microscopeManu Prakash, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering, has developed an ultra-low-cost paper microscope to aid disease diagnosis in developing regions. The device is further described in a technical paper.

How much caffeine is really in one cup of coffee?: As described in a Scientific American piece, new research shows the caffeine and caffeoylquinic acid content can vary greatly depending on the type and preparation of coffee.

Why sleeping in on the weekends may not be beneficial to your health: This blog entry links to a Wired Science article describing the dangers of oversleeping.

In medicine, showing empathy isn’t enough: In the latest installment of our SMS Unplugged series, medical student Moises Gallegos discusses some of the things he’s learned and observed about health disparities.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

The mystery surrounding lung-transplant survival rates: A 2012 article in the San Francisco Chronicle offered a look at the challenges facing lung transplant patients and explored why a significant number don’t live beyond the five-year mark, despite improvements in survival rates.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of July 13

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

“As a young lung cancer patient, I had to find my own path”: Fighting stage IV with full forceInspire contributor Emily Bennett Taylor, a Stage IV lung cancer survivor and spokesperson/patient advocate, discusses her choice to pursue aggressive treatment following diagnosis at age 28.

The woman in the elevator: dealing with death in medical training: In the latest installment of SMS Unplugged, medical student Jennifer DeCoste-Lopez shares her insight on dealing with death and loss in medical training.

Mourning the loss of AIDS researcher Joep Lange: Stanford researchers specializing in HIV/AIDS are among those around the world mourning the loss of Dutch scientist Joep Lange, MD, PhD, a leading AIDS researcher who died in the recent Malaysian Airlines crash in Ukraine.

Stanford bioengineer develops a 50-cent paper microscopeManu Prakash, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering, has developed an ultra-low-cost paper microscope to aid disease diagnosis in developing regions. The device is further described in a technical paper.

Stanford team develops nanotech-based microchip to diagnose Type 1 diabetes: Researchers here, including pediatric endocrinologist Brian Feldman, MD, PhD, have invented a cheap, portable, microchip-based test for diagnosing type-1 diabetes. The test could speed up diagnosis and enable studies of how the disease develops.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

Researchers explain how “cooling glove” can improve exercise recovery and performance: The “cooling glove,” a device that helps people cool themselves quickly by using their hand to dissipate heat, was created more than a decade ago by Stanford biologists Dennis Grahn and Craig Heller, PhD. This video demonstrates the device and explains how it can be used to dramatically improve exercise recovery and performance.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of July 6

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

It’s time for innovation in how we pay for medical schoolJoanne Conroy, MD, chief executive officer of Lahey Clinic & Medical Center in Burlington, Mass., discusses options to decrease undergraduate medical school debt. This post originally appeared on Wing of Zock.

Without exercise, Americans are growing more obese, according to Stanford researchers: Inactivity rather than overeating could be driving the surge in Americans’ obesity, according to a study by Stanford researchers that includes first author Uri Ladabaum, MD.

The behavioral consequences of overindulgence: Researchers from the Stanford Graduate School of Business have conducted a series of experiments on how overindulgence affects our pleasure in food. Their findings offer insights for both individuals that have trouble eating and drinking in moderation and those who are picky eaters.

Fewer than six degrees of separation: the small world of higher education: In this entry of the SMS Unplugged series, med student Hamsika Chandrasekar discusses the need to address diversity of undergraduate institutions in medical school.

Stanford patient on having her genome sequenced: “This is the right thing to do for our family”: Patient Julie Prillinger’s genome was among the first to be sequenced through a pilot program of the new Clinical Genomics Service at Stanford Hospital & Clinics. The pilot phase of the service is limited to specific patient groups.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

The mystery surrounding lung-transplant survival rates: A 2012 article in the San Francisco Chronicle offered a look at the challenges facing lung transplant patients and explored why a significant number don’t live beyond the five-year mark, despite improvements in survival rates.

Ask Stanford Med, Chronic Disease, Grand Roundup, Stanford News

Stanford physician Sanjay Basu on using data to prevent chronic disease in the developing world

Stanford physician Sanjay Basu on using data to prevent chronic disease in the developing world

Basu and RosenkranzThere’s a new health policy challenge in developing countries. Though many see chronic conditions like type-2 diabetes and heart disease as problems plaguing the wealthiest nations, “Nearly 80 percent of the deaths worldwide from these two diseases are coming from the developing world,” says Sanjay Basu, MD, PhD, an assistant professor of medicine at the Stanford Prevention Research Center.

But Basu is working to change this statistic, and his efforts just won him the $100,000 George Rosenkranz Prize for Health Care Research in Developing Countries. Administered by Stanford’s Center for Health Policy/Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, the award will help fund Basu’s large-scale data collection project in India. With a data set from over 65,000 people, Basu hopes to improve type-2 diabetes screening in the country, leading to better treatment and detection of the disease.

A researcher focused primarily on global development and human health, Basu is also an internal medicine physician with a master’s in medical anthropology and a doctorate in epidemiology. In the following Q&A, he discusses his current research interests and plans for the future.

How did you first become interested in global health policy and the developing world?

As a child, our family went back and forth between the United States and India, and the contrasts in daily life were striking and overwhelming. There is a sense in many parts of India that life is a privilege, and a constant struggle to maintain.

Your research in India will involve data collection and mathematical modeling, which sounds rather abstract. How does this work translate into real-world improvements in people’s health?

Our research serves as a bridge between the clinical science of how to prevent and treat disease, and the detailed operations of how to actually deliver better prevention and treatment in the real world. What we specifically do is combine biological and clinical data with data on program reach, budgets, and operations. In other words, we might learn how to build a car in a textbook, but our models look at how to make the car factory operate optimally so that the product, in the end, is drivable. We’ve worked closely with both government agencies and non-governmental groups to deliver programs in real-world populations, and to continuously improve those programs over time. For example, our work on how to introduce better tobacco control programs in India has actually resulted in recent legislation that has lowered tobacco use in some critical parts of the population.

What’s different about approaching chronic disease prevention in India versus in the United States?

The sheer size and diversity of the population is one big difference. India is four times the size of the United States, and far more diverse. There is simultaneously malnutrition and obesity, starvation and type-2 diabetes, vitamin deficiency and heart attacks – often in the same city. That means designing programs for a country – or a province, or even a city – requires a lot of attention to complicated perverse outcomes that may happen. For example, we’ve looked into reducing sodium intake as a strategy to lower hypertension and cardiovascular disease. But we also have to make sure that we don’t generate iodine deficiency since salt is the major delivery strategy for iodine and, unlike the United States, iodine deficiency is a serious concern in India.

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Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of June 22

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

Empowered is as empowered does: Making a choice about living with lupus: Inspire contributor Pattie Brynn Hultquist writes about her experience living with the autoimmune disease systemic lupus erythematosus and how she became an empowered patient.

Stanford bioengineer develops a 50-cent paper microscopeManu Prakash, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering, has developed an ultra-low-cost paper microscope to aid disease diagnosis in developing regions. The device is further described in a technical paper.

Student transitions in medicine: putting blinders on: In the latest installment of SMS Unplugged, medical student Moises Gallegos discusses the importance of mentorship and support during medical school transitions.

Talk from the hand: the role of gesture in verbal communication: An Italian study found that the sight of gestures combined with the sound of speech created a whole-body system of communication in which movement played an important role in helping listeners understand language that was unclear.

Secrets of fat cells discoveredMary Teruel, PhD, and colleagues have studied the life cycle of fat cells and what findings could mean for the treatment of obesity and diabetes.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

The mystery surrounding lung-transplant survival rates: A 2012 article in the San Francisco Chronicle offered a look at the challenges facing lung transplant patients and explored why a significant number don’t live beyond the five-year mark, despite improvements in survival rates.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of June 15

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

The reefer connection: Brain’s “internal marijuana” signaling system implicated in very early stages of Alzheimer’s pathology: A-beta, a substance suspected as a prime culprit in Alzheimer’s disease, may start impairing learning and memory long before plaques form in the brain. Daniel Madison, PhD, is the study’s senior author.

The hospital becomes a different place: pregnant in medical school: In the latest installment of SMS Unplugged, medical student Jennifer DeCoste-Lopez discusses the best and worst aspects of being pregnant while in medical school.

A new era for stem cells in cardiac medicine? A simple, effective way to generate patient-specific heart muscle cellsJoseph Wu, MD, PhD, and Paul Burridge, PhD, have devised a way to create large numbers of heart muscle cells called cardiomyocytes from stem cells without using human or animal-derived products, which can vary in composition and concentration among batches.

Stanford bioengineer develops a 50-cent paper microscopeManu Prakash, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering, has developed an ultra-low-cost paper microscope to aid disease diagnosis in developing regions. The device is further described in a technical paper.

Stanford microscope inventor invited to first White House Maker Faire: Bioengineering professor Manu Prakash, PhD, was invited to attend the first-ever White House Maker Faire to celebrate our “Nation of Makers” and to help empower America’s students and entrepreneurs to invent the future. Prakash showed attendees how to build a 50-cent microscope and a $5 programmable microfluidic chemistry set.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

The mystery surrounding lung-transplant survival rates: A 2012 article in the San Francisco Chronicle offered a look at the challenges facing lung transplant patients and explored why a significant number don’t live beyond the five-year mark, despite improvements in survival rates.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of June 8

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

Say Cheese: A photo shoot with Stanford Medicine’s seven Nobel laureates: A video shot earlier this spring captures Stanford Medicine’s seven Nobel Prize laureates preparing for a photo shoot at the Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge. The group photo appears on Stanford Medicine’s new website.

Stanford bioengineer develops a 50-cent paper microscopeManu Prakash, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering, has developed an ultra-low-cost paper microscope to aid disease diagnosis in developing regions. The device is further described in a technical paper.

Living with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: “Sometimes I just don’t have it in me to be inspirational”: In this Inspire column, a patient shares his thoughts about living with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a rare connective tissue disorder. “Every EDS patient knows that one of the hardest parts of our day is the moment we open our eyes and waken into the reality of our bodies,” Michael Bihovsky writes.

Stanford Medicine partners with TEDMED on “first-ever gathering on the West Coast”: Stanford Medicine has been named a medical research institution partner for TEDMED. The three-day conference will be held Sept. 10-12 and consist of a live, digitally-linked event held simultaneously in San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

Study shows banning soda purchases using food stamps would reduce obesity and type-2 diabetes: In a new study published in this month’s Health Affairs, Stanford researcher Sanjay Basu, MD, PhD, and colleagues created a computer model to simulate the effects of a soda ban on the health of food stamp recipients.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

The mystery surrounding lung-transplant survival rates: A 2012 article in the San Francisco Chronicle offered a look at the challenges facing lung transplant patients and explored why a significant number don’t live beyond the five-year mark, despite improvements in survival rates.

Grand Roundup

Grand Roundup: Top posts for the week of June 1

The five most-read stories this week on Scope were:

Study shows banning soda purchases using food stamps would reduce obesity and type-2 diabetes: In a new study published in this month’s Health Affairs, Stanford researcher Sanjay Basu, MD, PhD, and colleagues created a computer model to simulate the effects of a soda ban on the health of food stamp recipients.

Buddhist teacher Jack Kornfield on practicing “sensitivity to now”: In a lecture co-sponsored by Stanford’s Ho Center for Buddhist Studies and Stanford Continuing Studies, teacher and author Jack Kornfield, PhD, discussed mindfulness, loving-kindness meditation and graceful living during fast times.

Living with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: “Sometimes I just don’t have it in me to be inspirational”: In this Inspire column, a patient shares his thoughts about living with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a rare connective tissue disorder. “Every EDS patient knows that one of the hardest parts of our day is the moment we open our eyes and waken into the reality of our bodies,” Michael Bihovsky writes.

Stanford bioengineer develops a 50-cent paper microscopeManu Prakash, PhD, assistant professor of bioengineering, has developed an ultra-low-cost paper microscope to aid disease diagnosis in developing regions. The device is further described in a technical paper.

Early findings show nutrigenomics could make weight loss more efficient: At the recent European Society of Human Genetics meeting in Milan, University of Trieste researcher Nicola Pirastu, PhD, and colleagues presented findings on nutrigenomics showing that diets shaped according to a person’s metabolism may be more effective than non-specialized calorie reduction in helping him or her lose weight.

And still going strong – the most popular post from the past:

What are the consequences of sleep deprivation?: Brandon Peters, MD, an adjunct clinical faculty member at the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine, explains how lack of sleep can negatively affect a person’s well-being in this Huffington Post piece.

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