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Health and Medicine

Understanding deaths from post-surgical complications

Jul. 20, 2018—Robert Freundlich and colleagues analyzed records for nearly 1.2 million patients and found that, among patients who died within 30 days of surgery, one in five had a complication independently associated with mortality.

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Fueling the MATE transporter

Jul. 20, 2018—In new research, Hassane Mchaourab and colleagues have uncovered new insights into drug resistance that could lead to the development of new anti-cancer and antibacterial drugs.

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Novel insights on “leaky” gut

Jul. 20, 2018—Disruption of the integrity of the intestinal lining or epithelium contributes to a “leaky” gut and is a common feature of patients with inflammatory bowel disease. Yash Choksi, Christopher Williams and colleagues found that low levels of a certain protein exacerbated the condition.

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Team finds potent antibodies against three Ebola viruses

Jul. 19, 2018—Researchers led by James Crowe Jr. are a step closer to developing a broadly effective antibody treatment against the three major Ebola viruses that cause lethal disease in humans. The hope is that the antibodies — like heat-seeking missiles — would seek out and destroy the viruses before they can wreak havoc in the body.

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Study reveals opioid patients face multiple barriers to treatment

Jul. 12, 2018—In areas of the country disproportionately affected by the opioid crisis, treatment programs are less likely to accept patients paying through insurance of any type or accept pregnant women, a new Vanderbilt study found.

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Team explores diabetes drug’s ability to treat RSV infection

Jul. 12, 2018—A drug used to treat diabetes, liraglutide, may point to new therapies for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) bronchiolitis — inflammation and obstruction of the lungs’ small airways.

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Legalizing same-sex marriage increased health care access for gay men: Vanderbilt study

Jul. 11, 2018—One of the first studies to examine the health impacts of legal marriage for LGBT individuals has found gay men were more likely to receive routine medical care following marriage legalization.

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Mom may pass bacteria to baby in utero: Study

Jul. 5, 2018—New findings by Jörn-Hendrik Weitkamp and colleagues provide the first account of bacterial signatures in mammalian fetal intestinal tissue. The results suggest that bacterial DNA moves from the mother’s microbiome into the fetal intestine, which may be a critical stimulus for normal mucosal immune development.

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SMAD4 clue to colon cancer

Jul. 5, 2018—Chronic inflammation is a predisposing condition for colorectal cancer, the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. Anna Means, Ph.D., and colleagues have now linked inflammation-driven carcinogenesis in the colon to loss of an important signaling protein called SMAD4.

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Oak Ridge and Vanderbilt come together to explore cellular processes

Jul. 3, 2018—Vanderbilt and Oak Ridge National Laboratory are combining their expertise in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and computation to tackle some of the most pressing problems in biology.

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Scavengers “protect” HDL

Jun. 29, 2018—Lipid molecules that bind to HDL can modify its function — and blocking that modification can protect HDL and potentially lower the risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease.

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New staph virulence factor

Jun. 28, 2018—The new factor, an enzyme involved in host-pathogen interactions, may be a viable target for treating staph infections.

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