Discoveries

Study confirms mitochondrial mutations increase with age, impact stem cell treatments

A team led by Shoukhrat Mitalipov, Ph.D., director of the Center for Embryonic Cell and Gene Therapy at OHSU, has confirmed that mutations in mitochondrial DNA accumulate with age and can limit cells’ ability to create energy and function properly. The study examined induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells derived from patients’ skin or blood cells and identified faulty DNA, with each cell having potentially different types and percentages of mutations. These defects could undermine the … Read More

Researchers demonstrate the impact of obesity on emergency contraception

OHSU clinical researchers Alison Edelman, M.D., M.P.H., and Jeffrey Jensen, M.D., M.P.H., published a study that examined why emergency contraception isn’t as effective in obese women, and how to potentially increase its effectiveness in this population. The findings, published March 19 in the journal Contraception, show how obesity adversely impacts circulating levels of emergency contraception, and that doubling the dose appears to correct obesity-related interference in the drug’s efficacy. Roughly half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unintended. Single-dose emergency … Read More

Gouaux lab researchers visualize serotonin transporter structure, create platform for antidepressant drug design

Researchers at OHSU’s Vollum Institute have revealed the molecular structure of the serotonin transporter (SERT), providing new insight into the mechanism of antidepressant action of two widely prescribed selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) commonly used to treat depression. In their paper, “X-ray structures and mechanism of the human serotonin transporter,” published Apr. 6, in the journal Nature, authors Jonathan Coleman, Ph.D., Eric Gouaux, Ph.D., and Evan Green, describe their use of X-ray crystallography to capture … Read More

TTBD Startup Spotlight: ReelDx, Inc.

ReelDx, Inc. is an OHSU startup company developing secure, HIPAA-compliant medical video platforms for educational and clinical use. Launched in 2013, the company’s initial goal was to improve medical instruction by creating ReelDx Education, a video library of case studies to broaden medical student’s experiences in real-world health care settings. The company has since expanded to incorporate an additional video platform, called medvid.io. This video platform is aimed at improving the patient and physician relationship … Read More

Hessell and ONPRC team discovers antibody treatment that halts SHIV infection in infant macaques

This post has been updated with proper author attribution. OHSU researchers at the Oregon National Primate Research Center have shown that early short-term treatment with human anti-HIV1-1 monoclonal antibodies halts simian HIV infection, a chimeric virus that shares key properties with HIV,  in infant macaques. The study, published March 21 in Nature Medicine, shows that antibodies given to a baby macaque within 24 hours after being exposed to simian HIV can clear the virus completely, … Read More

TTBD Innovator Spotlight: Xiangshu Xiao, PhD

Xiangshu Xiao, Ph.D., associate professor of physiology and pharmacology in OHSU’s School of Medicine, has been at the forefront in the field of cancer chemical biology. The goal of his research is to develop novel cancer therapeutics, using a combination of chemistry and biology, to create new compounds that target deregulated proteins in cancer cells. In his two main cancer-related projects, Dr. Xiao has developed first-in-class compounds that show significant anti-cancer effects in various preclinical … Read More

Researchers discover dopamine modulates sensory hair cell activity

Sound and head movements are sensed by the inner ear, which conveys the signals to the brain, where they are processed and relevant information is sorted out. The brain also signals back to the ear and can influence its activity. For example, if a person is exposed to continuous loud noise, then the auditory system adapts. Generally, the same signaling molecules that mediate communication among neurons in the brain are also used for signaling to the … Read More

Institute of Medicine finds mitochondrial replacement therapy is ethical

In findings released February 3, an  Institute of Medicine panel has deemed mitochondrial transfer therapy ethical. This has important implications for the basic research of OHSU’s Shoukhrat Mitalipov and colleagues in the Center for Embryonic and Gene Therapy, though a Congressional ban on researching this therapy in humans remains in effect. Update: The IOM panel’s report has garnered major media interest–for example, see more here, here, here, and here.

Hope for patients suffering from vision loss due to glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy

New findings from OHSU’s von Gersdorff lab shed light on the underlying mechanism of progressive vision loss caused by diseases such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. In a paper published on Jan. 21, in the journal Neuron, the team led by postdoctoral researcher Mean-Hwan Kim, Ph.D., details their discovery of a new synaptic mechanism that uses the eye’s inhibitory neurons to block toxic excitability occurring in the retina of those suffering from glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. This discovery suggests the … Read More

Doernbecher scientists define first link between lead exposure and ADHD

Researchers at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital have defined for the first time a causal link between blood lead exposure and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in humans. While previous studies have associated lead blood levels with ADHD, research published in Psychological Science is the first to confirm previous hypotheses that exposure to lead in miniscule amounts typical in the U.S., or less than 10 parts per billion, increases symptoms in some individuals with ADHD. The paper … Read More

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Welcome to the Research News Blog

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