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β-blockers Build Heart Muscle, May Help Infants With Congenital Heart Disease
Surgery can mend congenital heart defects shortly after birth, but those babies will carry a higher risk of heart failure throughout the rest of their lives. Yet, according to a Science Translational Medicine study published today by UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh researchers, β-blockers could supplement surgery to regenerate infant heart muscle and mitigate the lasting effects of congenital heart disease.
“The question is no longer ‘can we save this baby?’” said senior author Bernhard Kühn, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh and director of the Pediatric Institute for Heart Regeneration and Therapeutics at UPMC Children’s Hospital. “The challenge for our young patients is that we want to enable them to have a long lifespan, ideally as long as a person without heart disease.”
For a relatively common congenital heart defect called Tetralogy
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American Journal Of Roentgenology Reviews Vaping-Associated Lung Injury Findings
An ahead-of-print "Clinical Perspective" article in the March issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR) summarizing the literature to date details common imaging manifestations of electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS)--including e-cigarettes and vaporizers, vape and hookah pens, as well as tank systems.
Because there is not a "standardized case definition for vaping-associated lung injury," wrote lead author Travis S. Henry from the University of California San Francisco, "the diagnosis of lung injury due to vaping may be made by establishing a temporal relationship between change in vaping habits and onset of lung disease, exclusion of other causes of lung disease (e.g., infection, other drug or exposure, connective tissue disease, and so on), and stabilization or improvement with cessation of vaping and possibly with corticosteroid treatment."
Stressing the importanc
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Vaccine Against RSV Could Be In Sight, Researchers Say
A vaccine for the common and sometimes deadly RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) has been elusive, but scientists say a new discovery puts them much closer to success.
A new study from The Ohio State University provides a potential blueprint for finding the immunological sweet spot – a vaccine weak enough that it doesn’t make people sick but strong enough that it prompts an ample immune response, ensuring that the body will recognize RSV as an intruder in the future, and quickly mount a protective defense.
In a study published today (Oct. 9, 2019) in the journal Nature Communications, researchers report success in knocking out an epigenetic modification known as N6-methyladenosine in RSV RNA – a technique that proved to tamp down the virus and prompt a robust immune response in cotton rats.
“We now have a novel target to go after, and are working with industry toward a vaccine,” said t
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Developing Electrically Active Materials To Repair Damaged Hearts
When a heart attack occurs, muscle in the heart tissue can be scarred, interfering with electrical activity necessary for healthy heart function. Drug treatments are available that alleviate further damage, but these don’t lead to tissue regeneration. Using artificial materials to patch or rebuild damaged parts has been tried but only recently has work focused on the electrical properties needed for proper cardiac operation.
In this week’s APL Bioengineering, from AIP Publishing, investigators review the use of electrically conductive biomaterials for heart repair and treatment. The investigators considered three ways these materials can be used: to create scaffolds upon which heart cells might regenerate, to make electrically conductive patches to repair damaged tissue, and to produce injectable hydrogels to carry drugs to specific cardiac regions.
A healthy heart beats when cells i