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Nobel Laureate Explores Proteins, Surgery

Posted: March 2, 2012 at 6:23 am

Nobel Laureate in Chemistry Roger Tsien discussed current research on fluorescent proteins, or proteins that emit bright colors when exposed to ultraviolet blue light, and their uses in surgery at Emory on Thursday.

The Department of Biochemistry held the lecture, titled Breeding and Building molecules to Spy on Cells and Disease Processes, at the Woodruff Health Sciences building as part of the Department of Biochemistrys annual Donald B. McCormick Lecture. The annual lecture honors McCormick, who served as the chair of the department from 1979 to 1994 and is currently professor emeritus at Emorys School of Medicine.

McCormick is recognized for his many achievements including the publication of more than 500 papers, leading expertise in nutritional biochemistry, and membership in notable committees such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

In 2008, Tsien received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his discovery of the green fluorescent protein (GFP) with his colleagues Osamu Shimomura and Martin Chalfie. He is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and professor at the University of California-San Diego.

He focused on proteins called miniSOGs, which are single oxygen-generating miniproteins and genetic tags used in electron microscopy (EM). He said electrons are beamed at an object to produce a highly magnified image. These miniSOGs are sequences of amino acids that can be attached to proteins, Tsien noted. When miniSOGs are exposed to blue light, they produce a type of molecular oxygen that is visible in EM. The use of EM creates an amplified image under the microscope which is of a greater resolution than the image produced by light microscopy.

It is really amazing how many different applications there are for the tag, James Roed, post doctorate fellow at the School of Medicine noted. The design is simple yet so complex and is really going to revolutionize cancer treatment but has potential in being used to tether probes to drugs as well.

Tsien explained the clinical applications of fluorescent dyes in cancer research and treatment. This is a very nonselective process. Tsien explained. When you try to do this with a fluorescent tag IV injection into a mouse, you get a fluorescent tail, because it sticks to the epithelia, which is the skin of the animal, at the site of the injection.

It then travels to different regions of the body but practically never reaches the tumor that you care about, Tsien said.

We decided in our lab that what was necessary was a way of making this process selective, not just indiscriminate, he said.

He then showed images of tumors in mice and explained the difficulty the human eye experiences in differentiating a tumor from the surrounding flesh. When the tissue was exposed via fluorescent illumination, the boundaries of the tumor became easily distinguishable as the fluorescent light blue mass stood out.

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Nobel Laureate Explores Proteins, Surgery

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Nationwide Children's Hospital neuromuscular disorder podcasts now available on iTunes

Posted: March 2, 2012 at 6:23 am

Public release date: 1-Mar-2012 [ | E-mail | Share ]

Contact: Erin Pope Erin.Pope@NationwideChildrens.org 614-355-0495 Nationwide Children's Hospital

In 2010, the Center for Gene Therapy at Nationwide Children's Hospital launched a monthly podcast entitled, "This Month in Muscular Dystrophy," featuring internationally known scientists discussing the latest research in muscular dystrophy and other neuromuscular disorders. Now, these podcasts will be available for users on iTunes and at http://www.NationwideChildrens.org/muscular-dystrophy-podcast.

The podcasts are geared toward patients, their families and primary care physicians who take care of patients with neuromuscular diseases. Hosted by Kevin Flanigan, MD, an attending physician in Neurology at Nationwide Children's Hospital, and a principal investigator in the Center for Gene Therapy in The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's, the programs include interviews with authors of recent scientific publications discussing how their work improves understanding of inherited neuromuscular diseases and what their findings might mean for treatment.

New programs available for download on iTunes include:

Podcasts from previous months have also been uploaded to iTunes and are available for download.

"There is a lot of exciting work going on in the field of neuromuscular disease, and for patients and their families, it may be hard to get access to information about new results," said Dr. Flanigan, also a professor of Pediatrics and Neurology at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. "Our goal in offering this monthly podcast is to provide a way for people affected by the muscular dystrophies and related disorders to hear directly from top researchers about their latest results. It's my job to converse in understandable terms with these researchers about what is useful or exciting in their work."

Patients and their families are eager to find reliable information, especially about what new therapies are entering trials. With these podcasts available on iTunes, patients and their families have access to this information at their fingertips. These monthly podcasts provide reliable information directly from leading scientists and physicians in the field to empower patients to take the information they learn into their own clinics to discuss with their doctors. The podcasts also serve to provide reliable information to primary care physicians who often have the most contact with patients who have neuromuscular disorders.

"Through these podcasts, I think we can reinforce the hope shared by all families, and let them know that many pathways that may lead to meaningful treatments are being explored," Dr. Flanigan added.

Dr. Flanigan's primary research interest is in the genetic and molecular characterization of inherited neuromuscular diseases particularly muscular dystrophies and in the development of therapies directed toward these diseases.

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Nationwide Children's Hospital neuromuscular disorder podcasts now available on iTunes

Recommendation and review posted by G. Smith

Nick Denis trades in laboratory for the octagon

Posted: March 2, 2012 at 6:23 am

darren yourk From Friday's Globe and Mail Published Thursday, Mar. 01, 2012 8:23PM EST Last updated Thursday, Mar. 01, 2012 8:25PM EST

Nick Denis can tell you what it feels like to knock a man out cold while thousands of fans roar their approval. He can also talk at length about proteomics the study of proteins and what it takes to finish a master degree in biochemistry.

Not a lot attention is paid to what goes on between the cauliflower ears of mixed martial arts fighters, but Denis, who walked away from the research lab one year short of getting his PhD from the University of Ottawa to focus on the octagon, is proof theres a lot more to the sport than power and toughness.

To be able to out-think an opponent is a huge advantage in a fight, Denis said. You have to understand how to react to situations and be analytical. It looks like just brute force in there, but theres actually technique and skill.

The Ottawa native roared into the bantamweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship in January, knocking out Joseph Sandoval with a series of elbow strikes just 22 seconds into the first round of his debut bout in Nashville an effort that earned him a $45,000 bonus cheque for knockout of the night. Hes now aiming to cement his status as an emerging talent when he returns to the octagon to face Johnny Bedford May 5 in East Rutherford, N.J.

After studying karate and tae kwon do in his youth, it was boredom with weightlifting workouts that got Denis started down the path to the UFC. He enrolled in a jiu-jitsu class with a friend as a new way to stay in shape and was hooked immediately. It wasnt long before he decided to train toward competing as an MMA fighter.

At the same time, Denis enrolled at the University of Ottawa, balancing a busy academic schedule in the world of analytical biochemistry with morning and evening training sessions.

Jeffrey Smith, a professor in the chemistry department at Carleton University who shared an office with Denis for almost three years at the University of Ottawa, calls him a gifted scientist.

He is really good with his hands, which is a big skill in the lab, Smith said. A lot of people have book smarts, but at the end of the day you have to have the manual dexterity to use the equipment and do things accurately. He was good at it, but Im not sure he enjoyed it all that much. MMA is really what hes passionate about.

While Denis showed up to the lab some days with a lumpy face and black eyes from training, Smith said it was his big personality that really made him stand out.

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Nick Denis trades in laboratory for the octagon

Recommendation and review posted by G. Smith

Ellen Pompeo: Katherine Heigl's Return To 'Grey's Anatomy' Is Unlikely (VIDEO)

Posted: March 2, 2012 at 6:22 am

Ellen Pompeo is downplaying the rumors about Katherine Heigl returning to "Grey's Anatomy."

The actress stopped by "Chelsea Lately" (weekdays, 11 p.m. EST on E!) to promote the ABC medical drama. When she wasn't talking tequila and making out on camera, Pompeo was shooting down the rumors that her former co-star Heigl seemingly started while promoting her film "One For the Money."

"So wait, what's going on? Is Katherine Heigl coming back to the show?" Handler asked Pompeo.

"I don't think so," Pompeo said, shaking her head.

Handler pressed further and Pompeo said, "No, I don't think that's happening."

During her January press tour, Heigl said she was ready to return to "Grey's Anatomy," and told the powers that be at the series that she wants to come back.

"I really, really, really want to see where [Izzie] is," Heigl told E! "I just want to know what happened to her and where she went and what she's doing now."

Pompeo's comments come as Season 8 of "Grey's Anatomy" -- and her contract with the show -- come to a close. Both Pompeo and co-star Patrick Dempsey have been vocal about their desire to remain with the series, while remaining vague.

"I would never turn up my nose at 'Grey's' ... If I hear from the fans that they want us to keep going, then I would continue because we owe them everything," Pompeo told TV Guide in October.

TV Replay scours the vast television landscape to find the most interesting, amusing, and, on a good day, amazing moments, and delivers them right to your browser.

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Ellen Pompeo: Katherine Heigl's Return To 'Grey's Anatomy' Is Unlikely (VIDEO)

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Stem Cell Therapy With Wraps – Video

Posted: March 1, 2012 at 6:51 pm

28-02-2012 12:11 Joyce Evans shows us a type of therapy that some athletes swear by. Using stem cells to heal sports and tissue related injuries. Fox 29, WTXF Reports.

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Stem Cell Therapy With Wraps - Video

Recommendation and review posted by G. Smith

Gala celebrates 50 years of U of Miami Neurology Department – Video

Posted: March 1, 2012 at 6:50 pm

27-02-2012 06:22 Gala celebrates 50 years of U of Miami Neurology Department

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Gala celebrates 50 years of U of Miami Neurology Department - Video

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