Major Alzheimer’s study to open 5 new Latin American sites

A major international Alzheimer’s disease research initiative will open five new sites in Latin America to help researchers understand the development of early-onset Alzheimer’s in Latino populations. For more than a decade, the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network (DIAN) – funded in large part by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and led by Washington University School of […]

Kipnis named BJC Investigator

Jonathan Kipnis, PhD, an internationally recognized scientific leader in how the nervous and immune systems interact in neurodegenerative, neuroinflammatory and neurodevelopmental disorders, has been named a BJC Investigator at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He will join the Department of Pathology and Immunology, with secondary appointments in the neurology, neuroscience, and neurosurgery departements. Kipnis […]

López named BJC Investigator

Carolina López, PhD, recognized internationally for her research on viral infections, has been named a BJC Investigator and will join the faculty of the Department of Molecular Microbiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. She also will become a member of the faculty at the school’s Center for Women’s Infectious Disease Research. The BJC Investigators Program recruits […]

Vogel-Hammen receives award for research in child, adolescent psychiatry

Alecia Vogel-Hammen, MD, PhD, an instructor in child psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry’s 2019 Pilot Research Award for Attention Disorders. The award, supported by the academy’s Elaine Schlosser Lewis Fund, provides up to $15,000 in funding to junior faculty and […]

New antidepressants on horizon

More than 14 million Americans suffer from clinical depression, yet one in three doesn’t experience relief from approved antidepressant drugs. A new treatment approach involving drugs called neurosteroids is on the horizon, however. Neurosteroids occur naturally in the brain and help regulate and modulate the activity of brain cells, but similar molecules also can be […]

Targeting immune cells may be potential therapy for Alzheimer’s

Messy tangles of a protein called tau can be found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease and some other neurodegenerative diseases. In Alzheimer’s, the tangles coalesce just before tissue damage becomes visible in brain scans and people start to become forgetful and confused. Now, a new study has found that brain immune cells […]

Scientists find timekeepers of gut’s immune system

As people go through their daily and nightly routines, their digestive tracts follow a routine, too: digesting food and absorbing nutrients during waking hours, and replenishing worn-out cells during sleep. Shift work and jet lag can knock sleep schedules and digestive rhythms out of whack. Such disruptions have been linked to increased risk of intestinal […]

Holtzman awarded Watanabe Prize in Translational Research

David Holtzman, MD, the Andrew B. and Gretchen P. Jones Professor and head of the Department of Neurology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received the August M. Watanabe Prize in Translational Research from the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute. He was recognized for his work uncovering the causes of Alzheimer’s disease […]

Atkinson awarded Presidential Gold Medal from rheumatology society

Physician-scientist and rheumatologist John P. Atkinson, MD, the Samuel B. Grant Professor of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been awarded the Presidential Gold Medal by the American College of Rheumatology. The highest award bestowed by the organization, the medal honors a lifetime of outstanding achievements in clinical medicine, research, education and […]

School of Medicine establishes Division of Physician-Scientists

Addressing a nationwide shortage of physician-scientists, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has established a Division of Physician-Scientists to help nurture the career development of physicians who treat patients and also want to conduct scientific research. The division will provide resources, mentorships, and research and leadership programs to encourage and inspire physicians interested […]

Gutmann wins prestigious neuro-oncology prize

David H. Gutmann, MD, PhD, the Donald O. Schnuck Family Professor and vice chair for research affairs in the Department of Neurology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received the Abhijit Guha Award from the Society for Neuro-Oncology and the Section on Tumors of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons/Congress of […]

Childhood obesity in low-income Missouri families aim of CDC grant

Obesity researchers from around Missouri, led by scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, have received a grant to help evaluate and put in place family-focused weight-management programs designed to reduce childhood obesity, particularly among children from low-income families. With a five-year, $3.7 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and […]

For gut microbes, not all types of fiber are created equal

Certain human gut microbes with links to health thrive when fed specific types of ingredients in dietary fibers, according to a new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The work — conducted in mice colonized with human gut bacteria and using new technologies for measuring nutrient processing — is a step […]

Stable home lives improve prospects for preemies

As they grow and develop, children who were born at least 10 weeks before their due dates are at risk for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder and anxiety disorders. They also have a higher risk than children who were full-term babies for other neurodevelopmental issues, including cognitive problems, language difficulties and motor delays. Researchers […]

Blood test is highly accurate at identifying Alzheimer’s before symptoms arise

Up to two decades before people develop the characteristic memory loss and confusion of Alzheimer’s disease, damaging clumps of protein start to build up in their brains. Now, a blood test to detect such early brain changes has moved one step closer to clinical use. Researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis […]

Culver named Sherwood Moore Professor of Radiology

Joseph P. Culver, PhD, a professor of radiology recognized for helping develop optical neuroimaging technologies to map brain function in humans and animals, has been named the inaugural Sherwood Moore Professor of Radiology. Based at the university’s Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology (MIR), Culver’s lab is notable for advancing diffuse optical tomography (DOT), a technology that uses light […]

Covey named Taylor Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry

Douglas F. Covey, PhD, a leader in the development of a new class of drugs — neurosteroids — to treat mental illness, has been installed as the inaugural Andrew C. and Barbara B. Taylor Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The professorship was established through a gift from […]

Whelan named head of molecular microbiology

Noted virologist Sean Whelan, PhD, has been named head of the Department of Molecular Microbiology and the Marvin A. Brennecke Distinguished Professor of Microbiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He studies how deadly viruses such as Ebola and rabies enter cells and multiply, a key step to finding targets for new […]

Anne Cross honored for multiple sclerosis research

Anne H. Cross, MD, the Manny and Rosalyn Rosenthal and Dr. John L. Trotter MS Center Chair in Neuroimmunology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received the John Dystel Prize for Multiple Sclerosis Research from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the American Academy of Neurology. The award recognizes outstanding contributions […]

Limbrick named T.S. Park, MD, Chair in Pediatric Neurosurgery

Pediatric neurosurgeon David D. Limbrick Jr., MD, PhD, a professor of neurosurgery and of pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been named the T.S. Park, MD, Chair in Pediatric Neurosurgery at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. The honor, bestowed by St. Louis Children’s through a gift from an anonymous donor, recognizes Limbrick’s expertise in […]

Creed, McCall named Rita Allen Foundation Scholars

Meaghan Creed, PhD, and Jordan McCall, PhD, both assistant professors in anesthesiology, have been named to the 2019 class of Rita Allen Foundation Scholars. The foundation chose 10 young leaders whose research in biomedical sciences holds promise for revealing new pathways to advance human health. Each scholar receives a grant of up to $110,000 annually […]

Alzheimer’s missing link ID’d, answering what tips brain’s decline

Years before symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease appear, two kinds of damaging proteins silently collect in the brain: amyloid beta and tau. Clumps of amyloid accumulate first, but tau is particularly noxious. Wherever tangles of the tau protein appear, brain tissue dies, triggering the confusion and memory loss that are hallmarks of Alzheimer’s. Now, researchers at […]

Understanding how tics are suppressed may help some at risk for tic disorders

At least 20 percent of elementary school-age children develop tics such as excessive blinking, throat clearing or sniffing, but for most of those kids, the tics don’t become a long-term problem. Conventional wisdom has held that most tics go away on their own and that only in rare cases do they become chronic or develop into […]

Cashen named Institutional Review Board chair

Amanda F. Cashen, MD, an associate professor of medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been named executive chair of the university’s Institutional Review Board (IRB), the multidisciplinary group that reviews and approves protocols for research studies that involve human subjects. The group is responsible for protecting the rights and welfare of […]

Aging delayed in older mice given blood component from young mice

New research has identified a novel approach to staving off the detrimental effects of aging, according to a study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The study suggests that a protein that is abundant in the blood of young mice plays a vital role in keeping mice healthy. With age, levels of […]

Powderly to lead Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences

William G. Powderly, MD, the Dr. J. William Campbell Professor of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been named director of the university’s Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences (ICTS). The institute is funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). […]

Metcalfe gift supports study of adversity’s effects on children’s brains

Compelled by the potential to improve the lives of vulnerable children, emeritus trustee Walter Metcalfe Jr. and his wife, Cynthia, have made a commitment of nearly $4 million through outright and estate gifts to support the work of Joan L. Luby, MD, a highly regarded child psychiatrist at Washington University School of Medicine in St. […]

Perlmutter receives Spirit of Hope Award

David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and the George and Carol Bauer Dean of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received the Christopher Hobler Spirit of Hope Award in recognition of his advocacy for neurological research. The award was presented April 25 by the nonprofit organization Hope Happens. […]

Creative workshops help kids relieve stress with art

Few, if any, of the children, teenagers and adults considered themselves artists. But then there were two women, smiling, encouraging their creativity, calling them “artists.” The women understood preoccupations persisted far different than art: Many of the young people struggled with difficult circumstances. Some worried about unstable family and home lives, or about getting in […]

Avidan named head of anesthesiology

Michael S. Avidan, MBBCh, has been named head of the Department of Anesthesiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. In that position, he also will become anesthesiologist-in-chief at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. Avidan will begin in his new role July 1. Avidan currently is the Dr. Seymour and Rose T. Brown Professor of Anesthesiology at the […]

Colonna, Ley elected to National Academy of Sciences

Two physician-scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis are among the 100 new members and 25 foreign associates elected to the National Academy of Sciences this year. Election to the academy — which was announced Tuesday, April 30 — is considered one of the highest honors that can be awarded to a U.S. scientist […]

Newfound autoimmune syndrome causes muscle pain, weakness

A previously unknown autoimmune muscle disease involving sudden onset of debilitating muscle pain and weakness has been identified by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The syndrome easily could be mistaken for other muscle diseases that require different treatment, so the findings are expected to help physicians treat patients appropriately, the […]

Physical therapy association honors Earhart

Gammon Earhart, PhD, director of the Program in Physical Therapy at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been named a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the American Physical Therapy Association. The award, the association’s highest honor, serves as an inspiration for physical therapists to attain professional excellence and recognizes physical therapists who have demonstrated unwavering […]

Zipfel named head of neurosurgery

Gregory J. Zipfel, MD, a noted expert on aneurysms and other disorders of blood vessels in the brain, has been named head of the Department of Neurosurgery at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Zipfel also will become neurosurgeon-in-chief at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. He will begin his new roles July 1. David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice […]

Lithium boosts muscle strength in mice with rare muscular dystrophy

Standing up from a chair, climbing stairs, brushing one’s hair – all can be a struggle for people with a rare form of muscular dystrophy that causes progressive weakness in the shoulders and hips. Over time, many such people lose the ability to walk or to lift their arms above their heads. This form of […]

Kepecs named BJC investigator

Adam Kepecs, PhD, recognized internationally for his research on neural circuits responsible for cognition and decision-making, has been named a BJC Investigator and a professor of neuroscience and psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The BJC Investigators Program recruits to the School of Medicine scientists who bring innovative approaches to address […]

Centene and Washington University collaborate to advance personalized medicine research

Centene Corp. and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis announced Monday, April 8, a partnership to transform and accelerate research into treatments for Alzheimer’s disease, breast cancer, diabetes and obesity. All are common, debilitating and often deadly diseases that affect millions of people worldwide, at all levels of income. As part of the […]

Connor named head of occupational therapy program

Lisa Tabor Connor, PhD, noted for her extensive research into recovery from stroke, will be the next executive director of the Program in Occupational Therapy at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. She will begin her new role July 1. Connor currently is chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy and associate director of research […]

Rineys give $15 million to develop, test therapies for neurodegenerative diseases

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has received a $15 million gift from Paula and Rodger Riney aimed at accelerating research and developing new treatments for two major neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Of the gift, $10 million will support Alzheimer’s disease research, while $5 million will support studies of Parkinson’s […]

Washington People: Robert Gereau

Not too long after he started working in academic medicine, Robert W. Gereau IV, PhD — then on the faculty at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston — accepted an invitation to lecture about his work to doctors and scientists at the Washington University Pain Center. His research and training involved cellular changes in the brain in response […]

Bateman receives Potamkin Award for Alzheimer’s research

Randall J. Bateman, MD, the Charles F. and Joanne Knight Distinguished Professor of Neurology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been awarded the Potamkin Prize for Research in Pick’s, Alzheimer’s, and Related Diseases. He will receive the award May 6 at the American Academy of Neurology’s annual meeting in Philadelphia. Sometimes […]

Kefalov receives Bressler Prize for vision research

Vladimir Kefalov, PhD, a professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences, has beenawarded the 2019 Bressler Prize by the Lighthouse Guild, an organization dedicated to reducing the burden of living with vision loss. Established in 2001, the Bressler Prize recognizes mid-career vision scientists whose leadership, research and service have led to substantive advancements in the understanding […]

Mobile phone technology to screen, help treat college students

A research team led by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has received a five-year, $3.8 million grant to evaluate the use of smartphones in treating psychiatric problems that are common among college students. “Not enough services are available to meet the mental health needs of students on college campuses,” said principal investigator Denise […]

$10 million to help study noise-induced hearing loss

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have received $10.5 million from the Department of the Army to investigate whether an anti-seizure drug can prevent noise-induced hearing loss when given several hours before exposure to extremely loud noise. Loud noise that can permanently damage hearing is a common hazard, whether that noise […]

Wang named Loewentheil Distinguished Professor

Ting Wang, PhD, whose work sits at the intersection of biology and computer science, has been named the inaugural Sanford C. and Karen P. Loewentheil Distinguished Professor of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Wang was installed by Washington University Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton and David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice […]

Yi awarded Sloan Research Fellowship

Jason Yi, PhD, an assistant professor of neuroscience at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has received a prestigious 2019 Sloan Research Fellowship, which supports promising early-career scientists. Yi studies how genetic variations perturb key developmental programs in neuronal development, leading to neurological disorders such as intellectual disability and autism. Yi is one […]

School of Medicine expands mission of McDonnell Genome Institute

The McDonnell Genome Institute at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis is entering a new era of genomic medicine, expanding its capacities beyond genome sequencing and adding a new and vital focus on understanding how genetics influences health and disease. Jeffrey Milbrandt, MD, PhD, recently appointed executive director of the McDonnell Genome Institute, says the […]