Tag Archives: medical research

‘Baby molecule’ halves scarring after stroke

A drug based on a molecule naturally present in infants – but which declines in adulthood – can halve the scarring in brains of those who have suffered stroke. And it can be delivered up to a week afterward.

The drug developed by James and Leon minimises the amount of scarring after the wound has been stabilised. Credit: Leon Teo
Enlarged cell bodies (pink), with increased scar-forming (green) following stroke. Credit: Leon Teo

“We hope our work will improve the recovery of the elderly, as well as people in rural and remote communities, who haven’t had access to speedy treatment following a stroke,” says Associate Professor James Bourne at the Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute (ARMI[1]), and Chief Investigator of the research.

The current treatment, a drug called tPA, is limited to ischemic strokes (caused by a blood clot). Only 10 per cent of all stroke patients qualify for treatment using the clot-busting drug, which can have harmful side-effects including haemorrhages. The optimum treatment window for tPA is within three hours of the stroke, with a 35 per cent success rate.

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Australian Academy of Science medals

Harry Messel has been a powerful force in science education—from the Physics Foundation to textbooks and his establishment of International Science Schools. He was awarded the Academy Medal.

Simon McKeon is a prominent business leader and philanthropist who has made extensive contributions to Australian science and innovation including chairing the CSIRO Board and the agenda-setting McKeon report into medical research in Australia. He was awarded the Academy Medal.

The life and death of cells: Jerry Adams has advanced understanding of cancer development, particularly of genes activated by chromosome translocation in lymphomas. By clarifying how the Bcl-2 protein family controls the life and death of cells, he and his colleagues at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research have galvanised the development of a promising new class of anti-cancer drugs. Jerry was awarded the 2014 Macfarlane Burnet Medal. Continue reading Australian Academy of Science medals

White cell assassins prove kiss of death for cancer

Misty Jenkins. Credit: L’Oréal Australia/sdpmedia.com.au

White blood cells have proven to be the serial assassins of the immune system, moving quickly on to their next target once they’re released from a dying cancer cell’s grip.

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Typhoid tips off new epidemic approach

A typhoid outbreak in Kathmandu has provided new insights into bacterial epidemics and antibiotic resistance, thanks to a Melbourne scientist’s genomic research.

Kathryn Holt. Credit: L’Oréal Australia/sdpmedia.com.au

Kathryn Holt, of the University of Melbourne’s Bio21 Institute, used genome sequencing to discover that an epidemic of deadly typhoid bacteria in Nepal’s capital city was driven by climate, and not by the outbreak of novel genetic strains.

Her research, published in the Royal Society journal Open Biology, changes our understanding of how typhoid spreads and how we can better respond to other bacterial epidemics.

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Glucosamine study raises fertility concerns

Photo: Green staining in a glucosamine-treated egg (bottom) shows increased activity in the glucose-sensing pathway compared with a control (top). Credit: Robinson Research Institute

Research on the effects of the popular joint supplement glucosamine has raised fears for women’s fertility, and a knee-jerk reaction from the vitamin industry, as Adelaide scientists reveal its threat to conception.

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Obese dads leave kids with fat chance

Photo: A mouse with diet induced obesity and its control counterpart. Credit: Robinson Research Institute

An obese father increases the risk of his children and grandchildren becoming obese, even if they follow a healthy diet. That’s the implication of a series of mouse studies conducted at the University of Adelaide.

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Preterm birth linked to teen school angst

Children born even one to five weeks premature can show reduced skills later in life.

Large numbers of premature-born children may be slipping under the radar, say researchers who have found brain development problems in teenagers deemed clinically normal after a late preterm birth.

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