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Updated: 1 day 32 min ago

Hydraulic Fracturing Linked to Increases in Hospitalization Rates in the Marcellus Shale Region, According to Penn Study

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 16:13

Hospitalizations for heart conditions, neurological illness, and other conditions were higher among people who live near unconventional gas and oil drilling (hydraulic fracturing), according to new research from the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University published this week in PLOS ONE.

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Vision-Restoring Gene Therapy Also Strengthens Visual Processing Pathways in Brain, According to Penn Study

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 16:11

Since 2007, clinical trials using gene therapy have resulted in often-dramatic sight restoration for dozens of children and adults who were otherwise doomed to blindness. Now, researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), have found evidence that this sight restoration leads to strengthening of visual pathways in the brain, published this week in Science Translational Medicine.

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Penn Vet Team Shows a Protein Modification Determines Enzyme’s Fate

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 11:23
blurb:  For the first time, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine show how an amino acid tag on a protein has the power to greatly influence the function of an enzyme called PRPS2, which is required for human life and can become hyperactive in cancer.

The human genome encodes roughly 20,000 genes, only a few thousand more than fruit flies. The complexity of the human body, therefore, comes from far more than just the sequence of nucleotides that comprise our DNA, it arises from modifications that occur at the level of gene, RNA and protein.

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Researchers at Penn Develop Scar-like Culture Systems to Understand and Treat Fibrosis

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 10:49

A scar might be a reminder of an accident or surgery, but the fibrous tissue that makes up a scar also forms after a heart attack and arises in solid tumors as well as in chronic diseases such as liver cirrhosis and muscular dystrophy. Implanted medical devices and materials are similarly surrounded by fibrous capsules that impede their function.  

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Penn Rising Senior Mary Sun Takes On Life’s Challenges in Stride

Tue, 07/14/2015 - 10:55

Dealing with the difficulties of family illnesses and financial problems inspired Mary Sun to study medicine and business at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Imagination Institute at Penn Awards Nearly $3M to Develop ‘Imagination Quotient’

Sat, 07/11/2015 - 12:29

The Imagination Institute, based at the University of Pennsylvania’s Positive Psychology Center, has announced nearly $3 million worth of grants to researchers at 16 institutions. The grants are aimed at the development of better ways of assessing and promoting imagination and creativity.

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Remediating Abandoned, Inner City Buildings Reduces Crime and Violence in Surrounding Areas, Penn Study Finds

Thu, 07/09/2015 - 15:41

Fixing up abandoned buildings in the inner city doesn’t just eliminate eyesores, it can also significantly reduce crime and violence, including gun assaults, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine report in the first study to demonstrate the direct impact of building remediation efforts on crime.

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Affordable Care Act Results in Dramatic Drop in Out-of-Pocket Prices for Prescription Contraceptives, Penn Medicine Study Finds

Thu, 07/09/2015 - 15:39

Average out-of-pocket spending for oral contraceptive pills and the intrauterine device (IUD), the two most common forms of contraception for women, has decreased significantly since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) took effect.

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Serious Adverse Events Rare in Healthy Volunteers Participating in Phase I Drug Trials, Penn Medicine Study Finds

Thu, 07/09/2015 - 15:38

Many people believe that phase I trials with healthy volunteers are very risky and because they pose risks with no benefits, unethical. But how risky are such trials?

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Penn Medicine: Genetic Variation Determines Protein’s Response to Anti-diabetic Drug

Thu, 07/09/2015 - 15:36

In the first study of its kind, Penn researchers have shown how an anti-diabetic drug can have variable effects depending on small natural differences in DNA sequence between individuals.

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Penn Science Café Presents ‘Your Brain: An Ever-changing Network’

Wed, 07/08/2015 - 16:53

WHO:     Danielle Bassett

Skirkanich Assistant Professor of Innovation

Department of Bioengineering

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Penn GSE Student Makes a Difference in Nairobi

Wed, 07/08/2015 - 15:06
blurb:  Through her blog, "Jambo Kenya," Micaela Wensjoe, a student in the International Educational Development Program at Penn's Graduate School of Education, is sharing her experiences and impressions of Nairobi, where she's interning this summer.

When Micaela Wensjoe headed to Kenya for the summer, she was focused on what she had to learn as part of an internship. But now that she is there, she has also developed an interest in helping orphans. 

Wensjoe, a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania, is blogging about all of it. 

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Disrupting Cells’ ‘Powerhouses’ Can Lead to Tumor Growth, Penn Study Finds

Wed, 07/08/2015 - 11:01
blurb:  A study by University of Pennsylvania researchers implicates defects in mitochondria, the energy-production centers of cells, as playing a key role in the transition from normal to cancerous.

Cancer cells defy the rules by which normal cells abide. They can divide without cease, invade distant tissues and consume glucose at abnormal rates.

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Penn Study Suggests Future Precision Medicine Approach to Treating Metabolic Syndrome, Related Disorders

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 13:49

In the first study of its kind, Penn researchers have shown how an anti-diabetic drug can have variable effects depending on small natural differences in DNA sequence between individuals.

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Penn Researchers Answer Question about Nematode Behavior: Nature, Nurture, or Physics?

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 13:37
blurb:  Nature versus nurture is an age-old question in biology, centering on whether a given trait is determined by an organism’s genes or by its environment. Most times the answer is “both,” but research at the University of Pennsylvania has found one trait in particular that is not easily described by either.

By Sarah Welsh

Nature versus nurture is an age-old question in biology, centering on whether a given trait is determined by an organism’s genes or by its environment. Most times the answer is “both,” but research at the University of Pennsylvania has found one trait in particular that is not easily described by either.

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Blacklegged Tick Populations Have Expanded Via Migration, Penn Biologists Show

Mon, 07/06/2015 - 12:42
blurb:  In a new study, biologists from the University of Pennsylvania found that blacklegged ticks moved into new areas of the Northeast from established populations, mainly through short-distance, local moves. The results shed light on patterns of disease spread and could have implications for strategies to control ticks in order to reduce disease.

Lyme disease cases are on the rise, with diagnoses occurring in areas that were historically Lyme-free. Scientists attribute the spread to the fact that populations of blacklegged ticks, which carry the bacteria that causes the disease, now flourish in areas once thought to be devoid of ticks.

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Penn Team Identifies Gene Responsible for Some Cases of Male Infertility

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 09:42
blurb:  Oftentimes men with a type of infertility called azoospermia don’t know the underlying cause of their condition. But new research led by University of Pennsylvania scientists suggests that mutations in an X chromosome gene called TEX11 are responsible for a significant number of cases of infertility — an estimated 1 percent of cases of non-obstructive azoospermia.

In the most severe form of male infertility, men do not make any measurable levels of sperm. This condition, called azoospermia, affects approximately 1 percent of the male population and is responsible for about a sixth of cases of male infertility.

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Penn Research Helps Show That Attention, Imagination Equally Important for Creativity

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 23:17

The role that attention plays in generating new and useful ideas is controversial among neuroscientists. Some neuroimaging studies have shown that creativity involves more cognitive control, or focused attention. Other studies have shown it involves less.

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Courtly Treasures: The Collection of Thomas W. Evans at Penn's Arthur Ross Gallery

Tue, 06/30/2015 - 12:34
blurb:  "Courtly Treasures: The Collection of Thomas W. Evans, Surgeon Dentist to Napolean III" runs from July 18 through Nov. 8, 2015.

Courtly Treasures: The Collection of Thomas W. Evans at
University of Pennsylvania’s Arthur Ross Gallery

July 18 – November 8, 2015

 

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New Penn Center Will Investigate the Physics of Cancer Via $10M NIH Grant

Sun, 06/28/2015 - 01:13

Investigators at a new University of Pennsylvania research center will focus on key physical principles that underpin cancer’s development and growth.

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