Research

When scientific curiosity paves the way for improved healthcare: Read more about promising studies and trials that lead to more effective drugs, procedures as well as medical guidelines.

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Cardiology research

Strong connection between heart health and pregnancy complications

A study of more than 18 million pregnancies has shown a strong and graded relationship between women’s heart health and pregnancy outcomes. The research is published in the European Journal of…

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Genetic alterations

Same mutation, different cancers: researchers explore connections

Why do alterations of certain genes cause cancer only in specific organs of the human body? Scientists at the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK), the Technical University of Munich (TUM), and the…

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Mechanical inactivation

'Nano traps' to lock up and neutralize viruses

To date, there are no effective antidotes against most virus infections. An interdisciplinary research team at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has now developed a new approach: they engulf…

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Leading cause for blindness

Breakthrough in research on age-related macular degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of blindness in developed countries affecting seven million in total in Germany, from which 500,000 people are suffering from late…

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Cardiology and sports

Risk of heart rhythm problems may be more than doubled for athletes

Athletes appear to be almost two and half times more likely than non-athletes to experience irregular heart rhythms (atrial fibrillation), suggests new research. In addition, those athletes involved…

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Tumour development research

New bladder cancer model could lead to better treatment

Uppsala University scientists have designed a new mouse model that facilitates study of factors contributing to the progression of human bladder cancer and of immune-system activation when the tumour…

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Post-hospitalisation

New study reveals impact of 'Long Covid'

Recovery duration, co-morbidities, mortality, risk groups: A large study across multiple UK centres reports in detail on prospectively assessed outcomes of Covid-19, the so called 'Long Covid'. We spoke with two of the study's co-investigators about why so many patients are still affected after a coronavirus infection.

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Cardiology research

Dynamic heart model gives insight into cardiac disease progression

Efforts to understand cardiac disease progression and develop therapeutic tissues that can repair the human heart are just a few areas of focus for the Feinberg research group at Carnegie Mellon…

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NAFLD research

3D imaging reveals neural ‘vicious cycle’ in fatty liver disease

With the application of a novel 3D imaging technology, researchers at Karolinska Institutet have discovered that one portion of the autonomic nervous system in the liver undergoes severe degeneration…

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Angiogenesis

Magnetic stimulation boosts blood vessel formation

Magnetic fields can be used to stimulate blood vessel growth, according to a new study. The findings, published in the journal Science and Technology of Advanced Materials by researchers at the…

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Self-powered implant

New device to speed up bone healing

Researchers know that electricity can help speed up bone healing, but “zapping” fractures has never really caught on, since it requires surgically implanting and removing electrodes powered by an external source. Now, researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison have expanded on this principle and developed a device to speed up bone healing.

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Coronavirus and the sexes

Covid-19 clinical trials ignore gender differences

Although the coronavirus affects men and women differently, the vast majority of clinical trials do not mention sex/gender, a new analysis of 4,420 studies concludes. Ultimately, it can influence the treatment negatively. The meta analysis is published in Nature Communications. According to the new research, only 4 percent of 4,420 registered studies explicitly plan to address sex and gender in…

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RAS protein mutation

New treatment approach targets cancer 'Death Star'

A new way to target a mutant protein which can cause the deadliest of cancers in humans has been uncovered by scientists at Leeds. The mutated form of the RAS protein has been referred to as the “Death Star” because of its ability to resist treatments and is found in 96% of pancreatic cancers and 54% of colorectal cancers. RAS is a protein important for health but in its mutated form it can…

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Support for T cells

Improving immune response against severe viral infections

Researchers have identified a way to improve the immune response in the face of severe viral infections. It is widely known that severe viral infections and cancer cause impairments to the immune system, including to T cells, a process called immune ‘exhaustion’. Overcoming immune exhaustion is a major goal for the development of new therapies for cancer or severe viral infections.

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Preventive potential

Tell-tale signs of heightened stroke risk may appear up to 10 years earlier

The tell-tale signs of a person’s susceptibility to a stroke may appear up to 10 years before the event, suggests research published online in the Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery & Psychiatry. Stroke patients experienced much steeper declines in cognitive abilities and routine daily functioning, starting around a decade before their first stroke, than people who didn’t have a stroke,…

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A new kind of hearing aid

A 'contact lens' for the ear

Excessive noise, hearing loss, vascular constriction, old age – hearing difficulties can be caused by many factors. To help improve the quality of life of people with hearing impairment, Mannheim start-up Vibrosonic have developed a new hearing aid with an integrated loudspeaker that sits directly on the eardrum. This hearing contact lens is not an implant, and the sound quality it delivers…

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Promising research tool

World's first digital cancer cell model

Computer models have been standard tools in basic biomedical research for many years. However, around 70 years after the first publication of an ion current model of a nerve cell by Hodgkin & Huxley in 1952, researchers at Graz University of Technology (TU Graz), in collaboration with the Medical University of Graz and the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, have finally…

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Psychology of the pandemic

How gamification helps us cope with Covid-19

A pandemic is not a game. Yet, human response in dealing with Covid-19 resembles patterns known from games: people hoard resources, compare leaderboards and graphs, play certain social roles, establish a good-versus-evil narrative, and align themselves with prominent hero figures. The reasoning behind this is simple.

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Aerosol propagation study

Covid-19: is it safe to play the trumpet and other wind instruments?

Aerosol generated by playing woodwind and brass instruments is less than that produced when vocalising (speaking and singing) and is no different than a person breathing, new research has found. The findings could be crucial to developing a roadmap for lifting Covid-19 restrictions in the performing arts, which have been significantly restricted since the start of the pandemic.

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Advanced care

This 'smart' wound dressing monitors the healing process with built-in sensors

Researchers at RMIT University in Australia have developed smart wound dressings with built-in nanosensors that glow to alert patients when a wound is not healing properly. The multifunctional, antimicrobial dressings feature fluorescent sensors that glow brightly under UV light if infection starts to set in and can be used to monitor healing progress.

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Transient implant

A pacemaker that dissolves when it's no longer needed

Researchers at Northwestern and George Washington (GW) universities have developed the first-ever transient pacemaker — a wireless, battery-free, fully implantable pacing device that disappears after it’s no longer needed. The thin, flexible, lightweight device could be used in patients who need temporary pacing after cardiac surgery or while waiting for a permanent pacemaker. All components…

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Virtual reality experiment

Using VR to promote Covid-19 vaccination

234 random passersby got the opportunity to try a new virtual reality game, when researchers from the University of Copenhagen visited Fælledparken to test the efficiency of VR technology within health information. During the event, the participants tried their strength against a new VR game that simulates the effect of herd immunity. The game is developed by researchers at the Virtual Learning…

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Digital patients, promising results

Are 'virtual' trials the future of research?

A study involving virtual rather than real patients was as effective in evaluating a medical device used  to treat brain aneurysms, according to new research. The findings are proof of concept for what are called in-silico trials, where instead of recruiting people to a real-life clinical trial, researchers build digital simulations of patient groups, loosely akin to the way virtual…

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Long Covid research

Covid-19 symptoms persist in half of young adults 6 months after

A new paper on long-Covid describes persistent symptoms six months after acute Covid-19, even in young home isolated people. The study from the Bergen Covid-19 Research Group, which was published in the journal Nature Medicine, followed infected patients during the first pandemic wave in Bergen. "The main novel finding is that more than fifty per cent of young adults up to 30 years old,…

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Medication development platform

Smart biomarkers to find new drugs against brain diseases

Dr. Hayder Amin and Dr. Caghan Kizil from the DZNE’s Dresden site aim to speed up developing drugs against brain diseases through cutting-edge technology. To this end, they are generating an innovative technology platform, termed “i3D-Markers”, based on high-density microelectrode arrays and 3-dimensional networks of human neurons. Compounds to be tested will be dripped onto this setup, and…

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Corona and EBV

Long Covid symptoms likely caused by Epstein-Barr virus reactivation

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) reactivation resulting from the inflammatory response to coronavirus infection may be the cause of previously unexplained long Covid symptoms—such as fatigue, brain fog, and rashes—that occur in approximately 30% of patients after recovery from initial Covid-19 infection. The first evidence linking EBV reactivation to long Covid, as well as an analysis of long Covid…

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Cardiology research

Statins could reduce risk of cancer among heart failure patients

Statin use among patients with heart failure is associated with a 16% lower risk of developing cancer compared with non-statin users during an average of four years of follow-up. This is according to new research published in the European Heart Journal. In addition, the study found that statin use was associated with a 26% reduced risk of dying from cancer over the same period.

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Severe effects

How COVID-19 wreaks havoc on human lungs

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory have published the first detailed atomic-level model of the SARS-CoV-2 "envelope" protein bound to a human protein essential for maintaining the lining of the lungs.

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