Nursing professor ’s visit to United Nations leaves indelible mark
When the UCLA School of Nursing ’s MarySue Heilemann was invited to be a delegate to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women earlier this year, she knew it would be a special experience. She just didn’t knowhow special. Or how far-reaching.“It was experience after experience after experience of just being so inspired by the dedicated, talented people who want to improve the conditions of living for women and girls worldwide,” Heilemann said of her time at the 62nd session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, attended by mo re than 6,000 representatives of member states, UN ...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 17, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Even with health insurance, lesbian, gay and bisexual adults are more likely to delay medical care
Lesbian, gay and bisexual adults in California have rates of health insurance coverage on par with or better than that of straight men and women in the state, but they are more likely to wait to see the doctor when they need medical care, according to a new  policy brief by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.Why the delay? According toSusan Babey, a co-author of the study, one reason cited in other research is that sexual minorities sometimes experience discrimination when they seek health care.“Sexual minorities who have had a bad experience with a medical provider because of their sexual orie...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 17, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Day of discharge does not influence heart surgery patient readmission rates, study finds
FINDINGSA study has found that the day of the week that a patient is discharged from the hospital does not affect the likelihood that he or she will be readmitted. The study showed comparable readmission rates for weekday and weekend or holiday discharge. It has been speculated that patients who are discharged on a weekend or holiday, when staff levels are typically lower, might be more likely to be readmitted to the hospital.The researchers found that the use before surgery of beta-blockers, a type of medication used to treat heart conditions; tobacco use; and surgical site infections were independent predictors of readmi...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 17, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA Fielding School of Public Health receives $2 million to support students with financial need
A $2 million gift from Jean Balgrosky and Parker Hinshaw will make it possible for more aspiring public health students to pursue their academic goals at UCLA.Beginning with the 2019 –20 academic year, the Jean Balgrosky and Parker Hinshaw Fellowship will provide assistance with tuition and living expenses for incoming students with financial need at theUCLA Fielding School of Public Health. The gift to establish the fellowship will be matched by an additional $1 million from the UCLA Chancellor ’s Centennial Scholars Match.“Providing financial support to students is a top priority for the Fielding School...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 16, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

HIV-positive infants are at high risk for acquiring congenital cytomegalovirus infection
FINDINGSInfants born to HIV-positive mothers had high rates of congenital cytomegalovirus, or CMV. Infants who also were infected before birth by the virus that causes AIDS were especially prone to CMV infection.The researchers found that 23 percent of the infants who became infected with HIV during the mother ’s pregnancy also were infected with CMV; 18 percent who were infected with HIV either during pregnancy or birth acquired congenital CMV; and 4.9 percent who were exposed to HIV but remained uninfected with that virus also acquired congenital CMV.Overall, HIV-infected infants were four times as likely to have a...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 15, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Childhood trauma, depression linked to higher risk of longer-term fatigue in breast cancer survivors
This study highlights the variability in people ’s experience of fatigue after treatment, which ultimately will allow for more personalized treatments for cancer survivors. In addition to psychosocial predictors, cancer treatments were also associated with fatigue trajectories. “Now that we know some of the risk factors for fatigue, and understand who are most at risk, we can really try to target those women and take more preventative measures to help them earlier in the course of their cancer experience,” said Ganz, who is also a distinguished professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medi...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 15, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA neurosurgeon named to National Academy of Medicine
Dr. Linda Liau, an internationally renowned neurosurgeon-scientist and chair of the neurosurgery department at theDavid Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, has been elected by her peers to the National Academy of Medicine, one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine.Membership honors people who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievements, commitment to service and contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care and public health.A scientist in UCLA ’sJonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, Liau has devoted the past 25 years to developing and refining treatment strategi...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 15, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

What ’s so inspiring about respiration?
Equal parts audacity and hard work define UCLA neuroscientist Jack Feldman ’s impressive career.As a postdoctoral student attending a scientific meeting in Stockholm in 1979, the Brooklyn, New York native presented his research disputing a popular theory. He ’d identified a new cluster of nerve cells as a key driver in how the brain is wired to control breathing. A top investigator took the microphone and loudly ridiculed Feldman’s findings.When his nemesis claimed a year later at a meeting in Germany that he ’d discovered the same brain site, Feldman worried the fellow would name the region after h...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 11, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Program coaches lower-income women about health and money
Karen Estrada used to read food labels while shopping but often did not know how to interpret the nutritional information. These days, she scours the tiny print for sodium, fat and sugar content. She writes the USDA recommended daily sodium intake at the top of her grocery lists, a reminder to choose low-sodium.“Now I really think about what I am buying and reading labels makes sense,” said Estrada, 28, an administrative assistant who lives with her husband and son, 7, in Los Angeles. “Reading labels and trying to eat different colored fruits and vegetables has been a really big change. I learned I w as e...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 9, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA researchers identify common molecular mechanism in two skeletal disorders
FINDINGSA rare and as-yet-unnamed skeletal disorder shares a common “signaling pathway” with another rare skeletal disorder called Jansen metaphyseal chondrodysplasia. (A signaling pathway is a group of molecules in a cell that work together to control one or more cell functions.) The findings point to the mechanisms that control both normal and disordered devel opment of the skeleton, and could even lead to a novel target for cancer drugs.  BACKGROUNDSkeletal disorders, or dysplasias — such as brittle bones or very short limbs — can arise from genetic mutations that affect the development...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 9, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA is awarded $5 million to develop tools to detect lung cancer earlier
Researchers from the UCLA School of Dentistry and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA have been awarded $5 million over five years from the National Cancer Institute to develop liquid biopsy tools for testing individuals who could have lung cancer — the leading cause of cancer death in both U.S. men and women. The award, one of only six given in the nation, will support further development of the tools to improve methods for early detection of lung cancer.Today ’s standard of care in diagnosing lung cancer involves a low-dose computed tomography scan of the lungs, evaluating whether there are what are c...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 8, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA researchers discover aggressive prostate and lung cancers are driven by common mechanisms
UCLA researchers have discovered a common process in the development of late-stage, small cell cancers of the prostate and lung. These shared molecular mechanisms could lead to the development of drugs to treat not just prostate and lung cancers, but small cell cancers of almost any organ.The key finding: Prostate and lung cells have very different patterns of gene expression when they ’re healthy, but almost identical patterns when they transform into small cell cancers. The research suggests that different types of small cell tumors evolve similarly, even when they come from different organs.The study, led by Dr. O...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 4, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA receives $3 million to pursue research on mobility and function for patients with spinal cord injuries
The David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA has received a $3 million gift from The Louis and Harold Price Foundation to support the spinal cord work of Dr. Daniel Lu, associate professor of neurosurgery and director of theUCLA Neuroplasticity and Repair Laboratory and UCLA Neuromotor Recovery and Rehabilitation Center.Lu ’s research combines basic science and clinical testing to decode the spinal cord’s electrical language, which controls muscle function in multiple motor systems. He applies these findings in studies of potential treatments for patients with spinal cord injuries, using different methods to act...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 4, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Vietnam veteran marks 10 years of walks to raise money for UCLA ’s Operation Mend
Charity ManessRic Ryan has become known as the “Walking Man of Murphys.”Ric Ryan, 72, fought for his country in Vietnam, has had both knees and one hip replaced and, in August, was struck by a car at a crosswalk.The car accident took him out of action for several weeks, but soon he was back trekking along the streets near his hometown of Murphys, California to raise money for a UCLA program that helps wounded veterans of post 9-11 conflicts, most of whom weren ’t even born when Ryan was a Marine fighting in the jungles of Vietnam.In 2008, Ryan saw a TV news story about UCLA Health ’sOperation Mend. ...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - October 2, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA receives $10 million to advance women ’s health
A $10 million commitment from philanthropist Iris Cantor will enable theDavid Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA to advance its work in educating the next generation of clinicians and scientists in women ’s health care.Cantor, a longtime UCLA donor and a champion for women ’s health, was honored at a campus event Sept. 27 by UCLA Chancellor Gene Block and Dr. Kelsey Martin, dean of the Geffen School of Medicine. Of the new commitment, $8 million will support training and education in women’s health care at the medical school.“Iris Cantor’s profound contributions to women’s health hav...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 28, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

In California, 2 in 3 kids fail to meet exercise standards, according to UCLA study
California ‘s weather encourages year-round outdoor activity. Yet just 1 in 3 children and only 1 in 5 teens in the state exercise for the one hour per day that’s recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,according to a study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.In contrast, a greater percentage of California adults are walking regularly. A  related report by the center found that 4 in 5 adults walk for transportation (to reach work, for example), for leisure or both – an increase from 3 in 4 a decade earlier. In fairness to children, though, the ...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 27, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA-led Health Equity Network of the Americas is created to address gaps in health, longevity
Across the Americas, there continue to be wide gaps in health and longevity between rich and  poor, educated and lesser educated, and people at high or low risk of being the targets of violence.To address these gaps, theHealth Equity Network of the Americas has been launched to coincide with the release of recommendations from the Pan American Health Organization Commission on Equity and Health Inequalities in the Americas. Its guidelines call on nations and communities to take steps to ensure health equity and well-being for all populations.The equity network comprises health equity experts from 26 countries and orga...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 24, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Scientists reverse a sensory impairment in mice with autism
Using a genetic technique that allows certain neurons in the brain to be switched on or off, UCLA scientists reversed a sensory impairment in mice with symptoms of autism, enabling them to learn a sensory task as quickly as healthy mice.Thefindings, which appear in the journal Nature Neuroscience, offer an intriguing glimpse of a potential strategy to help people with autism make sense of what their eyes see.In humans, the ability to perceive visual information is critical to learning of all kinds, including the interpretation of social cues. In children with autism, avoiding eye contact and struggling to understand people...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 24, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Online diabetes prevention programs are as effective as in-person sessions for weight loss, study finds
This study is one of the first to assess weight outcomes in an online diabetes prevention program in comparison to in-person delivery of such a program.BACKGROUNDSome 84 million, or one in three, U.S. adults have prediabetes, a condition in which one ’s blood sugar levels are consistently higher than normal, though not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. Without any intervention, up to 30 percent of adults with prediabetes can develop type 2 diabetes within five years, and up to 70 percent can develop it over their lifetime. Yet type 2 diabetes risk can be lowered by as much as 58 percent with lifestyle interventions ...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 24, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Decades later, man meets the UCLA doctor who saved his life
It ’s 1970 and 10-month-old Maurice Elias lay in a hospital bed in the pediatric intensive care unit dangerously malnourished, at just 14 pounds, and with a severe infection in his mouth. The antibiotics that doctors at UCLA had been using to treat Maurice, who had been born without a functional immu ne system, were no longer working.The only way Maurice was going to survive was a bone marrow transplant.“If we couldn't find a way to give Maurice a working immune system, he was going to die. And the only way to do so was with a risky transplant that could be fatal, too,” said Dr. Richard Stiehm, the UCLA d...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 19, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Plans to change federal Medi-Cal funding could force some California counties to slash health coverage
The number of Californians who gained health insurance grew by 3 million people after the Affordable Care Act expanded Medi-Cal coverage in 2014 and 2015. But anticipated federal funding changes could over time force counties to shoulder more of the cost of paying for health care, or cut back enrollment and programs, according to a  study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.Nearly one-third of the state ’s 33 million people under the age of 65 are enrolled in the health insurance program for low-income and disabled residents known in California as Medi-Cal (or Medicaid in the rest of the Unit...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 18, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Researchers find adult stem cell characteristics in aggressive cancers from different tissues
UCLA researchers have discovered  genetic similarities between the adult stem cells responsible for maintaining and repairing epithelial tissues — which line all of the organs and cavities inside the body — and the cells that drive aggressive epithelial cancers. Their findings could bring about a better understanding of how ag gressive, treatment-resistant cancers develop and progress, and could eventually lead to new drugs for a range of advanced epithelial cancers such as lung, prostate and bladder cancers. The study, led by senior authors Owen Witte and Thomas Graeber, both of the  UCLA E...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 18, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA researchers develop mechanism for characterizing function of rare tumor cells
This study is among the first to characterize and quantify activity of enzymes produced by circulating tumor cells — an important step toward clarifying the biology of how cancer spreads.“Being able to understand the biology of metastasis will allow us to intervene better and continue to make better diagnostic tools to help patients,” Di Carlo said.The study ’s other authors are Dr. Steven Dubinett, a member of the Jonsson Cancer Center; first author Manjima Dhar, a postdoctoral scholar at theUCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering; Jeffrey Lam, an undergraduate student at UCLA Samueli; and Tonya W...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 18, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

First CDC guidelines for treating children ’s concussions offer valuable tools for doctors, UCLA researchers report
For the first time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  has issued guidelines for diagnosing and treating children who have suffered a concussion, also known as a mild traumatic brain injury. These guidelines will provide doctors with the tools they need to deliver the best outcomes for young patients with concussion, said two UCLA co-authors of the report, recently publish ed in JAMA Pediatrics.“Children have been overlooked in research and clinical protocols for concussion, but their smaller size doesn’t make them less important,” said Dr. Christopher Giza, director of the &nb...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 17, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA-led team develops new system for tracking chemicals in the brain
UCLA and Columbia University researchers have developed a new method for tracking the activities of small molecules in the brain, including the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine.“Understanding the fundamentals of how neurotransmission occurs will help us understand not only how our brains work, but what’s going on in psychiatric disorders,” said Anne Andrews, the study’s lead author, a UCLA professor of psychiatry and chemistry.The research, which was published in the journal Science, is part of the BRAIN Initiative, a collaboration among government, private industry, nonprofits, and colleges...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 13, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA scientist gives couple hope while searching for a cure for paralysis
If you think listening to a paralyzed, blind man discuss his life does not sound uplifting, meet Mark Pollock. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy, whose TED talk about body language has nearly  15 million views, describes the new talk by Pollock and his partner, human rights lawyer, Simone George, as “the most powerful, moving talk I have ever seen at TED.”Pollock lost his vision at 22 and became paralyzed after an accident at 39 that left him, in his words, “on the very edge of survival.” You certainly wouldn’t know that seeing him now in this talk, titled “A love letter to realism...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 13, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA ’s Michael Grunstein wins 2018 Lasker Award for medical research
Michael Grunstein, a distinguished professor of biological chemistry at theDavid Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, has been awarded the 2018 Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award for his groundbreaking research on gene expression. He shares the award with C. David Allis of Rockefeller University in New York.Grunstein provided the first demonstration that histones — the proteins that package DNA within chromosomes — are more than inert structures that serve simply as spools for DNA. Working with his team at UCLA, he showed via experiments with yeast that histones actually play an important role in gene exp...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 11, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

When the theme is collaboration, labs get moving
UCLA Health Most people have, at one time or another, packed up all their belongings and lugged them to a new environment — a first dorm room, a bigger apartment, a different house. Few people, though, have had to pack up multiple million-dollar scientific instruments, boxes upon boxes of test tubes, pipettes and beakers, and scores of experiments at various stages of completion. Hundreds of researchers at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA recently did just that.The reason was simple: School leaders wanted dramatically amplify the environment of collaboration that unites multidisciplinary teams in...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 10, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Brains of people with schizophrenia are less reactive to social rewards like smiling faces, study shows
FINDINGSIn imaging studies, UCLA researchers found that the brains of people with schizophrenia are less sensitive to social rewards, such as the positive feelings that can come from social interactions with people, than they are to so-called nonsocial rewards, such as money or objects.BACKGROUNDPeople generally find social stimulation rewarding, which in turn motivates them to seek more social interactions. Conversely, in people with schizophrenia, abnormalities in how the brain processes social rewards likely contribute  to human interaction problems. One of the hallmarks of schizophrenia is the impairment of social...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 10, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Changes in the architecture around cancer cells can fuel their spread
FINDINGSUCLA researchers have found that the extracellular matrix, the dense network of proteins and carbohydrates that surround a cell, can influence how cells move within the body by regulating their sugar consumption. The study shows that acute changes in a single component of the extracellular matrix can trigger a very rapid change in the metabolism and migration of the cell.  BACKGROUNDGiven its importance in the growth and migration in cancer cells, scientists have intensely studied how glucose metabolism can be regulated in response to a variety of both internal and external cues. But little research has focuse...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 8, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Brain ’s support cells may play a central role in repetitive behaviors related to OCD
Repetitive behavior disorders are relatively common. One of the best known in this family is obsessive compulsive disorder, or OCD, which affects more than2 percent of the U.S. population. Existing treatments, often medications, may not bring adequate relief for about half of those with the disorder.UCLA researchers have uncovered some of the basic brain mechanisms behind repetitive behavior, which may ultimately lead to new ways to treat psychiatric disorders, including OCD, at their root.The study, published in the journal  Neuron, was led by Baljit Khakh, professor of physiology and neurobiology at UCLA.Khakh and h...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 7, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

California ’s large minority population drives state’s relatively low death rate, study finds
This study was partially funded by grants from Adventist Health White Memorial. (Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences)
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 6, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Metabolism-focused startup aims to shorten time between scientific insight and therapies
One of the major challenges in modern medicine is the length of time required to turn new scientific insights into treatments that help patients. Now, the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA is launching an innovative startup company to speed up that process, with an emphasis on metabolism research and related therapies.This new “virtual” drug development startup company, Enspire Bio, will channel the knowledge and financial resources necessary to translate basic science — the bedrock of medicine — into powerful treatments. And, in a notable departure from traditional approaches, the translation...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 5, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA ’s epilepsy center offers hope to people with drug-resistant seizures
More than 20 new anti-seizure drugs have been introduced in recent decades — a number that means little to people with drug-resistant epilepsy. For them, treatment has not improved.Some people are willing to try medication after medication — coping with side effects and getting no relief from seizures — because they believe, as do their doctors, that maybe the next drug will work. Others have been afraid of procedures that could ease their seizures, or have believed wrongly that surgery is their only other option. Still others don ’t actually have epilepsy at all, but don’t know it. In fact, 4...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 5, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Affordable Care Act reduced health care disparities among Latino groups in California, study finds
Previous studies have shown that Mexican immigrants living in the United States are less likely to have insurance or to report a usual source of care than Mexican-Americans, other Latinos and non-Latino whites. But the Affordable Care Act may have made it easier for them to access health care when they need it. More Latinos of Mexican heritage in California reported having health insurance and a usual source of care compared to other Latinos after the health care law ’s major provisions were implemented than before these provisions were put into place, according to a new study led by a researcher at the UCLA Fielding...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 5, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

8,000 new antibiotic combinations are surprisingly effective, UCLA biologists report
Scientists have traditionally believed that combining more than two drugs to fight harmful bacteria would yield diminishing returns. The prevailing theory is that that the incremental benefits of combining three or more drugs would be too small to matter, or that the interactions among the drugs would cause their benefits to cancel one another out.Now, a team of UCLA biologists has discovered thousands of four- and five-drug combinations of antibiotics that are more effective at killing harmful bacteria than the prevailing views suggested.Their findings, reported today in the journal npj Systems Biology and Applications, c...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - September 3, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

New book urges schools to make physical education a priority
Bill Simon is the co-founder ofUCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind, an  adjunct professor of economics at UCLA, recipient of the Marty Skylar My Last Lecture Award, and a former Republican nominee for California governor.In 1998, he and his wife, Cindy, created the Sound Body Sound Mind Foundation to help schools bolster their lagging physical education programs by providing physical fitness facilities, curriculum and training — in an effort to fight childhood obesity. The organization joined forces with UCLA Health in 2015. To date, the program is in 141 schools nationally (127 in the Los Angeles area) and serves...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 31, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Requiring insurers to cover retail pharmacy vaccinations for adult Californians could save lives, study finds
Requiring health insurers to pay for adult vaccinations given at retail pharmacies could help prevent the spread of deadly communicable diseases such as influenza, pneumococcal infection and human papillomavirus, according to a  new study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.Many insurers do not cover pharmacy-administered vaccines; cover a limited selection of vaccines; or require people they insure to get vaccinated only at pharmacies within their insurance network, the study reports.Overall vaccination rates in state are lowThe overall vaccination rate among adult Californians is far below federa...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 30, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Recent measles case in Santa Monica sheds light on risk of outbreak
The recent news about an international tourist with measles who visited Santa Monica raised anew concerns about the potential for an outbreak of the disease, which has been all but eradicated in the United States.Measles remains endemic in many parts of the world, including popular tourist destinations in parts of Western Europe, and travelers need to be aware of the risks posed by the highly contagious disease. In the Santa Monica case, the traveler had visited several restaurants and hotels in Santa Monica from Aug. 8-10.UCLA HealthDr. Deborah Lehman“Measles is one of the most contagious disease we have, and the co...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 30, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

New therapy spurs nerve fibers to regrow through scar tissue, transmit signals after spinal cord injury in rodents
Neuroscientists at UCLA, Harvard University and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology have identified a three-pronged treatment that triggers axons — the tiny fibers that link nerve cells and enable them to communicate — to regrow after spinal cord injury in rodents. Not only did the axons grow through scars, they could also transmit signals across the damaged tissue.If researchers can produce similar results in human studies,  the findings could lead to a therapy to regrow axon connections in  people living with spinal cord injury, potentially restoring function. Nature publishes the researc...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 29, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Combination approach shows promise for beating advanced melanoma
A UCLA-led study has found that a treatment that uses a bacteria-like agent in combination with an immunotherapy drug could help some people with advanced melanoma, an aggressive form of skin cancer, live longer.The research showed that using the immunotherapy drug pembrolizumab and the experimental agent SD-101, a sequence of nucleic acids that mimics a bacterial infection, altered the microenvironment around the tumor in a way that enabled the immune system to more effectively attack the cancer. The research was an early-stage study, conducted to test the side effects and best dosage of a potential new combined therapy, ...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 28, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA-led study reveals the mechanism that helps malaria parasites take over human red blood cells
Researchers from UCLA and Washington University in St. Louis have discovered the previously unknown mechanism of how proteins from  Plasmodium parasites — which cause malaria — are exported into human red blood cells, a process that is vital for parasites to survive in humans. The finding could pave the way for new treatments for malaria.In the study, published today in Nature, researchers reveal the atomic structure of the Plasmodium translocon of exported proteins, or PTEX, the protein complex that transports these malaria proteins into the red blood cell. The research also provides the first direct...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 27, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Researchers identify link between gut bacteria and eating for pleasure, as opposed to hunger
In this study, people with higher indole levels showed stronger function and connectivity in these two areas.Higher function and connectivity in the brain ’s reward system could indicate an overactive reward system that promotes and reinforces overeating. Such overactivity of the reward system in obese individuals with food addiction has been reported in previous research.METHODThe researchers obtained functional MRI brain imaging from the healthy participants. They collected and analyzed fecal samples in order to determine the presence of particular gut metabolites. The subjects completed questionnaires that me...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 23, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Neuroscientists restore significant bladder control to 5 men with spinal cord injuries
More than 80 percent of the 250,000 Americans living with a spinal cord injury lose the ability to urinate voluntarily after their injury. According to a2012 study, the desire to regain bladder control outranks even their wish to walk again.In a study of five men whose injuries occurred five to 13 years ago, UCLA neuroscientists stimulated the lower spinal cord through the skin with a magnetic device placed at the lumbar spine. The research is the first to show that the technique enables people with spinal cord injuries to recover significant bladder control for up to four weeks between treatments. The findings are publish...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 22, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Rent burden strains more than three-quarters of low-income seniors in California, study finds
More than three-quarters of California ’s low-income seniors are financially burdened by rent, according to a new fact sheet from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.Low-income seniors who rent — numbering more than half a million — can be forced to move far from their established social and medical networks to find rentals they can afford; they may end up in substandard housing; or — at worst — homeless, according to authors of the study.“Older Californians with limited incomes struggle to pay for shelter, food, medical care and other basic necessities. Escalating ...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 21, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

For children with complex medical situations, a new roadmap for improving health
Children with severe disabilities, serious cognitive impairments and medically complex situations require more specialized health care during their lifetimes. But establishing a consistent way to identify their overall health needs and measure progress in meeting those needs has been an elusive goal.A team of UCLA researchers has developed a set of health outcome measures for such children using a software program that aggregates the latest research and expertise about how to treat their conditions. Theteam ’s work, published in the  journal Pediatrics, proposes a standard to shape the ideal model of care for ch...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 17, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Statins associated with improvement of rare lung disease
This study suggests that oral statin therapy may be a new approach for patients with autoimmune pulmonary alveolar proteinosis.AUTHORSThe study ’s co-senior authors are Dr. Elizabeth Tarling of UCLA and Dr. Bruce Trapnell of Children’s Hospital Medical Center of Cincinnati, Ohio. Other authors are listed in the journal article.JOURNALThe study was  published in the journal Nature Communications. FUNDINGThe National Institutes of Health funded the research.Learn more about the  cardiovascular research theme at UCLA.  (Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences)
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 17, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

UCLA Health hospitals again rank No. 1 in Los Angeles, No. 7 nationally
UCLA Health hospitals in Westwood and Santa Monica ranked No. 1 in Los Angeles, No. 2 in California and No. 7 nationally in the annual U.S. News& World Report assessment released today.It ’s the 29th consecutive year that U.S. News has placed UCLA Health on its honor roll, a distinction reserved for only 20 hospitals in the nation that deliver high-quality care across a range of specialties, procedures and conditions.“UCLA Health is proud to once again be recognized for comprehensive excellence in patient care,” said Johnese Spisso, president of UCLA Health and CEO of the UCLA Hospital Syste...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 14, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Methyl marks on RNA discovered to be key to brain cell connections
FINDINGSMethyl chemical groups dot lengths of DNA, helping to control when certain genes are accessible by a cell. In new research, UCLA scientists have shown that at the connections between brain cells — which often are located far from the central control centers of the cells — methyl groups also dot chains of RNA. This methyl markup of RNA molecules is likely key to brain cells’ ability to quickly send signals to other cells and react to changing stimuli in a fraction of a second.BACKGROUNDTo dictate the biology of any cell, DNA in the cell ’s nucleus must be translated into corresponding strands...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 9, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news

Race and research: How public health experts can reduce racial bias in their work
How can public health researchers address racism? That ’s the focus of a supplement to the latest issue of the journal Ethnicity& Disease, for which UCLA professor Chandra Ford served as a guest editor.“Race is a social construct and not a biological attribute, but scientists continue to design studies that reinforce the notion that race and ethnicity are causes of health outcomes,” said Ford, an associate professor of community health sciences and the founding director of theCenter for the Study of Racism, Social Justice& Health at theUCLA Fielding School of Public Health.The journal supplement i...
Source: UCLA Newsroom: Health Sciences - August 9, 2018 Category: Universities & Medical Training Source Type: news