School of Medicine expands mission of McDonnell Genome Institute

Will apply its powerhouse DNA sequencing to precision medicine From the WashU School of Medicine News… 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 […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Advances in Understanding Ischemic Stroke Physiology and the Impact of Vasculopathy in Children With Sickle Cell Disease” (2019) Stroke Advances in Understanding Ischemic Stroke Physiology and the Impact of Vasculopathy in Children With Sickle Cell Disease (2019) Stroke, 50 (2), pp. 266-273.  Guilliams, K.P.a b , Fields, M.E.b , Dowling, M.M.c a From the Department of Neurology (K.P.G.), Washington University School […]

Nerve transfer surgery gives hope to children with rare paralyzing illness

Procedure may help restore some function in children with acute flaccid myelitis From the WashU Newsroom… At Brandon Noblitt’s first appointment with Washington University surgeon Amy Moore, MD, a year ago, he was barely able to walk, mostly using a wheelchair to get around. Only 6 years old at the time, Brandon had come down with […]

Less anesthesia during surgery doesn’t prevent post-op delirium

But close brain monitoring linked to lower 30-day mortality From the WashU Newsroom… Many older adults who have major surgery experience postoperative delirium in the days after their operations. Previous research has suggested that closely monitoring the brain during surgery and making adjustments to protect the brain from too much anesthesia could reduce risk of […]

Scans Show Women’s Brains Remain Youthful As Male Brains Wind Down

From NPR’s All Things Considered… Women tend to have more youthful brains than their male counterparts — at least when it comes to metabolism. While age reduces the metabolism of all brains, women retain a higher rate throughout the lifespan, researchers reported Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “Females had a younger brain […]

Women’s brains appear three years younger than men’s

May explain why women more likely to stay mentally sharp in later years From the WashU Newsroom… Time wears differently on women’s and men’s brains. While the brain tends to shrink with age, men’s diminish faster than women’s. The brain’s metabolism slows as people grow older, and this, too, may differ between men and women. […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Neuronal evidence for good-based economic decisions under variable action costs” (2019) Nature Communications Neuronal evidence for good-based economic decisions under variable action costs (2019) Nature Communications, 10 (1), art. no. 393, .  Cai, X.a b c d , Padoa-Schioppa, C.a e f a Department of Neuroscience, Washington University in St Louis, St Louis, MO 63110, United States b NYU Shanghai, 1555 Century Avenue, […]

Why it’s key to identify preschoolers with anxiety and depression

New research shows these kids have mental and physical problems as they grow older From Science News… …Maybe, says Joan Luby, a psychiatrist at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Luby’s research has shown that treating preschoolers with depression helps the youngsters feel joy again, at least in the short term. “When […]

Silva, Ramani chosen as Inaugural WashU Faculty Fellows in Entrepreneurship

From the WashU Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research… Jennifer Silva, MD, associate professor of Pediatrics and Vijay Ramani, PhD, the  Roma B. & Raymond H. Wittcoff Professor of Energy, Environmental & Chemical Engineering have been selected as the inaugural entrepreneurial faculty fellows. These individuals advise WashU faculty and small companies founded by WashU personnel […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of Combined Dual Motor Nerve Transfers versus Alternative Surgical and Nonsurgical Management Strategies to Restore Shoulder Function Following Upper Brachial Plexus Injury” (2019) Neurosurgery Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of Combined Dual Motor Nerve Transfers versus Alternative Surgical and Nonsurgical Management Strategies to Restore Shoulder Function Following Upper Brachial Plexus Injury (2019) Neurosurgery, 84 (2), pp. 362-377.  Khalifeh, J.M.a , Dibble, […]

Just One Night Of Sleep Loss Can Affect Body And Mind, Studies Find

From Forbes… Brains do a lot of work while we sleep—far from being a passive behavior, sleep is actually critical to brain health, and as a result, mental and cognitive health. A few new studies in recent weeks underline how important sleep is, and how detrimental lack of sleep can be. And not just chronic […]

Sleep deprivation accelerates Alzheimer’s brain damage

Study in mice, people explains why poor sleep linked to Alzheimer’s From the WashU Newsroom… Poor sleep has long been linked with Alzheimer’s disease, but researchers have understood little about how sleep disruptions drive the disease. Now, studying mice and people, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found that sleep […]

Study: Sleep Deprivation Speeds Up Alzheimer’s Disease

From US News & World Report… EXPERTS HAVE LONG warned about the negative effects of sleep deprivation, and new research suggests that people with Alzheimer’s disease may be particularly affected. In a study of mice and humans, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis found that sleep deprivation increases levels of the […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Neuroimaging of individual differences: A latent variable modeling perspective” (2019) Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews Neuroimaging of individual differences: A latent variable modeling perspective (2019) Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 98, pp. 29-46.  Cooper, S.R., Jackson, J.J., Barch, D.M., Braver, T.S. Washington University in St. Louis, Psychological and Brain Sciences, St. Louis, MO, United States Abstract Neuroimaging data is being increasingly […]

Blood test detects Alzheimer’s damage before symptoms

Test also may identify neurodegeneration in other brain diseases, injuries From the WashU School of Medicine News… A simple blood test reliably detects signs of brain damage in people on the path to developing Alzheimer’s disease – even before they show signs of confusion and memory loss, according to a new study from Washington University […]

New hope for stem cell approach to treating diabetes

Insulin-producing cells more responsive to fluctuating glucose levels From the WashU Newsroom… Scientists working to develop more effective treatments for diabetes are turning to stem cells. Such cells can be transformed into cells that produce insulin, the hormone that controls blood sugar. But there’s a major challenge: the amount of insulin produced by theses cells […]

Emerging areas

New centers address personalized medicine and aging From the WashU Outlook Magazine… Three newly established research centers will strengthen the School of Medicine’s commitment to advancing two of the institution’s major research priorities: personalized medicine and aging. Investigators in these centers will undertake multidisciplinary work with implications for addressing a broad range of major health […]

Gene therapy blocks peripheral nerve damage in mice

jeffreyLays groundwork for developing treatments for peripheral neuropathy, other nerve diseases From the WashU Newsroom… Nerve axons serve as the wiring of the nervous system, sending electrical signals that control movement and sense of touch. When axons are damaged, whether by injury or as a side effect of certain drugs, a program is triggered that […]

Probing the microbiome

Studies of people and their companion microbes shed light on health and disease From the WashU Outlook Magazine… ven in our most solitary moments, we humans are never alone. On us and within us, tens of trillions of microbes live and thrive — not as passive hitchhikers, but as interactive, symbiotic shapers of our biology. […]

On the frontiers of psychiatry

Physician-scientists aim to reduce the impact of mental illness on society From the WashU Outlook Magazine… Up to one-third of the 16 million Americans with clinical depression don’t get relief from antidepressant drugs. As a result, they endure continuing sadness, problems with sleep, and often, difficulty concentrating, so that reading a book or functioning at […]

New hope for old disease

Doctors may soon be able to predict, prevent Alzheimer’s disease From the WashU Outlook Magazine… Caring for an aging relative with Alzheimer’s disease, watching memories slowly slip away, is an exhausting and heartbreaking ordeal. For those with the condition, modern medicine can offer little in the way of treatment as the disease inexorably strips away […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Seizures as an early symptom of autosomal dominant Alzheimer’s disease” (2019) Neurobiology of Aging Seizures as an early symptom of autosomal dominant Alzheimer’s disease (2019) Neurobiology of Aging, 76, pp. 18-23.  Vöglein, J.a b , Noachtar, S.b , McDade, E.c , Quaid, K.A.d , Salloway, S.e , Ghetti, B.f , Noble, J.g , Berman, S.h , Chhatwal, J.i , […]

Decreased deep sleep linked to early signs of Alzheimer’s disease

Toxic brain protein tau elevated in older people who sleep poorly From the WashU School of Medicine News… Poor sleep is a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease. People with the disease tend to wake up tired, and their nights become even less refreshing as memory loss and other symptoms worsen. But how and why restless nights […]

When it comes to brain tumors, a patient’s sex matters

From The Conversation… Have you ever wondered why, in most species, males are larger and more ornamented than females? It’s an evolutionarily determined aspect of biology, but what does it mean for human health and disease? What are the implications of needing one chart to describe normal growth in boys, and another to describe normal growth […]

Scientists identify new fuel-delivery route for cells

Findings shed light on chronic diseases, aging From the WashU School of Medicine News… Scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have identified a previously unknown route for cellular fuel delivery, a finding that could shed light on the process of aging and the chronic diseases that often accompany it. With age, […]

Alzheimer’s Disease May Develop Differently In African-Americans, Study Suggests

From NPR’s All Things Considered… Scientists have found a biological clue that could help explain why African-Americans appear to be more vulnerable than white Americans to Alzheimer’s disease. A study of 1,255 people, both black and white, found that cerebrospinal fluid from African-Americans tended to contain lower levels of a substance associated with Alzheimer’s, researchers […]

Mice sleeping fitfully provide clues to insomnia

Genetically engineered mice mimic common sleep problems From the WashU School of Medicine News… Mice that sleep fitfully could help researchers unravel the mystery of insomnia. Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis studied mice genetically modified to mimic the genetic disease neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), which is associated with sleep problems. […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Automatic labeling of cortical sulci for the human fetal brain based on spatio-temporal information of gyrification” (2019) NeuroImage Automatic labeling of cortical sulci for the human fetal brain based on spatio-temporal information of gyrification (2019) NeuroImage, 188, pp. 473-482.  Yun, H.J.a b , Chung, A.W.a b , Vasung, L.a b , Yang, E.c , Tarui, T.a b d e […]

Racial differences in Alzheimer’s disease unveiled

Findings suggest possible race-linked variations on how disease arises, develops From the WashU School of Medicine News… African-Americans may be twice as likely as Caucasian Americans to develop Alzheimer’s disease, but nobody knows why because studies investigating the underlying causes of illness have historically drawn from a nearly all-white pool of research participants. Consequently, little […]

Tiny, implantable device uses light to treat bladder problems

From the WashU Newsroom… A team of neuroscientists and engineers has developed a tiny, implantable device that has potential to help people with bladder problems bypass the need for medication or electronic stimulators. The team — from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Feinberg School […]

Sex differences identified in deadly brain tumors

Tailoring treatment to men, women may improve survival From the WashU School of Medicine News… For decades, scientists have recognized that more males get cancer and die of the disease than females. This is true for many types of cancer, including the deadly brain tumor glioblastoma. Now, a team of researchers led by Washington University […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Automatic labeling of cortical sulci for the human fetal brain based on spatio-temporal information of gyrification” (2019) NeuroImage Automatic labeling of cortical sulci for the human fetal brain based on spatio-temporal information of gyrification (2019) NeuroImage, 188, pp. 473-482.  Yun, H.J.a b , Chung, A.W.a b , Vasung, L.a b , Yang, E.c , Tarui, T.a b d e […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Perioperative gabapentin and post cesarean pain control: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials” (2019) European Journal of Obstetrics Gynecology and Reproductive Biology Perioperative gabapentin and post cesarean pain control: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (2019) European Journal of Obstetrics Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, 233, pp. 98-106.  Felder, L.a , Saccone, G.b , […]

2018 in review: Making strides and discoveries on campus and around the globe

From the WashU Newsroom… The Source looks back at some of our most read and most shared stories of 2018. Highlights include good news (a new chancellor), bad news (even light drinking increases risk of death) and who knew news (“collective narcissism” is real and Virginians have it).   Read more at the Source.

Diamond honored with 2019 Stanley J. Korsmeyer Award

Award celebrates key discoveries made by physician-scientists From the WashU School of Medicine News… Michael S. Diamond, MD, PhD, an infectious diseases specialist at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been chosen as the recipient of the American Society for Clinical Investigation’s 2019 Stanley J. Korsmeyer Award. He is being honored for his contributions […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Effect of apolipoprotein E4 on clinical, neuroimaging, and biomarker measures in noncarrier participants in the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network” (2019) Neurobiology of Aging Effect of apolipoprotein E4 on clinical, neuroimaging, and biomarker measures in noncarrier participants in the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network (2019) Neurobiology of Aging, 75, pp. 42-50.  Bussy, A.a b , Snider, B.J.a b , Coble, D.a […]

New genetic clues to early-onset form of dementia

Culprit is lone error in one gene, but researchers find many potential therapeutic targets From the School of Medicine News… Unlike the more common Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia tends to afflict young people. It accounts for an estimated 20 percent of all cases of early-onset dementia. Patients with the illness typically begin to suffer memory […]

People who act out dreams needed for study

Phenomenon linked to Parkinson’s, dementia, other serious neurodegenerative diseases From the WashU School of Medicine News… Picture this: A soccer referee, dreaming he’s on the pitch, flings his arm up with an imaginary red card and accidentally smacks his sleeping partner in the face. Funny? Maybe on TV. In real life, acting out dreams is […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Common binding sites for cholesterol and neurosteroids on a pentameric ligand-gated ion channel” (2019) Biochimica et Biophysica Acta – Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids Common binding sites for cholesterol and neurosteroids on a pentameric ligand-gated ion channel (2019) Biochimica et Biophysica Acta – Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids, 1864 (2), pp. 128-136.  Budelier, M.M.a , Cheng, W.W.L.a , […]

Regrowing damaged nerves hinges on shutting down key genes

Injured neurons temporarily revert to immature state From the WashU School of Medicine News… Neurons in the brain and spinal cord don’t grow back after injury, unlike those in the rest of the body. Cut your finger, and you’ll probably be back to using it in days or weeks; slice through your spinal cord, and […]

University receives new grant to fund Amgen Scholars Program

Undergraduate research experience supports science education and innovation From the WashU Newsroom… Washington University in St. Louis has received a new grant from the Amgen Foundation to provide hands-on laboratory experiences to undergraduate students through the Amgen Scholars Program. This marks the ninth year the university is participating in the program, which aims to inspire […]

$6.3 million for center to develop new tracers for PET scans

Could improve early diagnosis, precision medicine for cancer, atherosclerosis, other diseases From the WashU Newsroom… PET scans can reveal subtle signs of diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s and atherosclerosis not detectable through other imaging tools. The technology holds enormous promise for improving early diagnosis, monitoring the effectiveness of treatment, and tailoring therapy to each individual’s […]

Scholars highlight impact of early adversity on developing brain, implications for criminal justice

From NPR’s St. Louis Public Radio… The early development of the human brain begins in utero and continues into a person’s early-to-mid-20s. In that time, various environmental factors such as poverty, toxins and violence can influence that development. Among adolescent youth, who are susceptible to engaging in risky behavior, the impact of such stressors can […]

Alzheimer’s researchers receive Chan Zuckerberg Initiative funding

Research aims to show how immune system may drive neurodegenerative diseases From the WashU School of Medicine News… A team of researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has been funded by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI)to study the root causes of neurodegenerative disorders. The project at the School of Medicine will analyze […]

WashU weekly Neuroscience publications

“Ambient PM2.5 and O3 and their combined effects on prevalence of presbyopia among the elderly: A cross-sectional study in six low- and middle-income countries” (2019) Science of the Total Environment Ambient PM2.5 and O3 and their combined effects on prevalence of presbyopia among the elderly: A cross-sectional study in six low- and middle-income countries (2019) Science […]

GUEST COMMENTARY: Girls must learn to see themselves as scientists

From the Times of Northwest Indiana… I recently visited an elementary school to lead a neuroscience demonstration for fifth-graders. The activities were going splendidly: my station demonstrating the brain’s plasticity (its ability to change and adapt with the environment) saw enthusiastic students who were also able to learn about proprioception (knowing where your body is […]

Repetitive behaviors tied to brain activity patterns in toddlers

From Spectrum News… Children who have repetitive behaviors, a core autism trait, show particular patterns of brain activity as early as 1 year of age, according to a new study1. Autistic people have brain activity patterns that differ from those of their typical peers. These differences emerge early in life: A study last year showed […]

Addressing racial disparity in autism outcomes, Washington University seeks to improve diagnosis and intervention for black children

From the St. Louis American… The Center for Disease Control’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network most recently reported that 1 in 59 children, or about 1.7 percent, have an autism spectrum disorder. Historically, African-American children have being identified with autism spectrum disorder at a significantly lower rate than Caucasian children, but this gap has […]

Medical students honor their teachers at ceremony

Faculty, residents given Distinguished Service Teaching Awards From the WashU School of Medicine News… Washington University School of Medicine students recently honored faculty and residents with Distinguished Service Teaching Awards for the 2017-18 academic year. The awards, which were first given in 1991, reflect the students’ appreciation for dedication, patience and skill in training aspiring […]

AAAS names 11 Washington University faculty as fellows

From the WashU Newsroom… Eleven faculty members at Washington University in St. Louis — the most in a decade-and-a-half — are among 416 new fellows selected by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society. Samuel Achilefu; Victoria J. Fraser, MD; Robert W. Gereau; Kathleen B. Hall; Joseph […]