CHINA’S CORONAVIRUS: ANSWERS FROM AN EXPERT
EDUCATION
Jan 23, 2020

CHINA’S CORONAVIRUS: ANSWERS FROM AN EXPERT

An outbreak of a newly recognized coronavirus in the Chinese city of Wuhan is making international headlines. Already hundreds of people have been sickened and more than 56 have died as a result of the illness. Additional coronavirus patients have been found in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea and the United States. We have seen outbreaks like this involving newly emerged diseases like SARS, MERS, Zika and Swine flu. Is this one different? We sat down with Andrew Pavia, M.D., the chief of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases for University of Utah Health who studies emerging infections to learn more.... Read More

U CHEMIST AND PEDIATRICIAN NAMED FELLOWS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF INVENTORS
RECOGNITION
Dec 04, 2019

U CHEMIST AND PEDIATRICIAN NAMED FELLOWS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF INVENTORS

University of Utah distinguished professor of chemistry Peter Stang and professor of pediatrics Anne Blaschke were two of 168 academic inventors named as Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors for 2019. Stang opened pathways in organic chemistry reactions and now explores ways to form molecules into self-assembled geometric shapes. Blascke played key roles in developing molecular tests for rapidly diagnosing infectious diseases. Deininger is a professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Hematology and Hematological Malignancies at the University of Utah (U of U). He leads the Center of Excellence in hematology and hematologic malignancies at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI). This group encompasses physicians, scientists, students, and support personnel working collaboratively to advance research and training in hematology and develop new approaches to treat blood diseases, including blood cancers.... Read More

INTERNATIONAL LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD IN LEUKEMIA RESEARCH AWARDED TO MICHAEL DEININGER, MD, PHD
RECOGNITION
Dec 02, 2019

INTERNATIONAL LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD IN LEUKEMIA RESEARCH AWARDED TO MICHAEL DEININGER, MD, PHD

The International Chronic Myeloid Leukemia Foundation (iCMLf) has awarded the prestigious Rowley Prize to Michael Deininger, MD, PhD. Deininger’s selection as the 2019 awardee was announced in February. Formal presentation of the prize occurred at an international scientific conference in Bordeaux, France, earlier this month. Deininger is a professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Hematology and Hematological Malignancies at the University of Utah (U of U). He leads the Center of Excellence in hematology and hematologic malignancies at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI). This group encompasses physicians, scientists, students, and support personnel working collaboratively to advance research and training in hematology and develop new approaches to treat blood diseases, including blood cancers.... Read More

COMBATING THE MISINFORMATION ABOUT VACCINES ON THE INTERNET
EDUCATION
Oct 03, 2019

COMBATING THE MISINFORMATION ABOUT VACCINES ON THE INTERNET

In this podcast, Vicente Planelles, PhD, answers our questions about the factors contributing to the public's lack of trust in the medical community, the advice he gives to lay people who buy into "fake news," and the role health care practitioners play in reducing the spread of misinformation.... Read More

UNIVERSITY OF UTAH HEALTH RESEARCHERS AMONG TEAMS FUNDED BY PEW TO PURSUE SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERIES
RECOGNITION
Sep 19, 2019

UNIVERSITY OF UTAH HEALTH RESEARCHERS AMONG TEAMS FUNDED BY PEW TO PURSUE SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERIES

he Pew Charitable Trusts announced today the six pairs of researchers who will make up its 2019 class of Innovation Fund investigators. These investigators—alumni of Pew’s biomedical programs in the United States and Latin America—partner on interdisciplinary research to tackle some of the most complex questions in human biology and disease. Spanning the spectrum from virology to epigenetics and from microbiology to developmental biology, research teams combine multiple disciplines to advance scientific discovery and improve human health.... Read More

THE PATIENT WHO FINALLY KNOWS WHY HER UTIS WON’T GO AWAY
RESEARCH
Sep 03, 2019

THE PATIENT WHO FINALLY KNOWS WHY HER UTIS WON’T GO AWAY

Nanell Mann began getting urinary tract infections in 1971, when she got a hysterectomy following the birth of her sixth child. She would take antibiotics and get better. Get sick again. Take antibiotics. Not get better. Take other antibiotics. Repeat, repeat, repeat for more than 40 years—the list of treatments that worked against her infections getting shorter and shorter and shorter over time. Her UTIs became resistant to multiple antibiotics. And she kept getting sick.... Read More

THESE GUT BACTERIA PREVENT OBESITY IN MICE. WHAT COULD THAT MEAN FOR US?
RESEARCH
Jul 25, 2019

THESE GUT BACTERIA PREVENT OBESITY IN MICE. WHAT COULD THAT MEAN FOR US?

Researchers at University of Utah Health have identified a specific class of bacteria from the gut that prevents mice from becoming obese, suggesting these same microbes may similarly control weight in people. The beneficial bacteria, called Clostridia, are part of the microbiome — collectively trillions of bacteria and other microorganisms that inhabit the intestine.... Read More

GUT MICROBES PROTECT AGAINST NEUROLOGIC DAMAGE FROM VIRAL INFECTIONS
RESEARCH
Jul 16, 2019

GUT MICROBES PROTECT AGAINST NEUROLOGIC DAMAGE FROM VIRAL INFECTIONS

Gut microbes produce compounds that prime immune cells to destroy harmful viruses in the brain and nervous system, according to a mouse study published today in eLife. The findings suggest that having a healthy and diverse microbiota is essential for quickly clearing viruses in the nervous system to prevent paralysis and other risks associated with diseases such as multiple sclerosis. A condition that causes progressive damage to nerve cells, multiple sclerosis has become more common over the past several decades. Viral infections in the brain or spinal cord are thought to trigger this disease. Some scientists believe that changes in the way we eat, increased sanitation or growing antibiotic use may be causing detrimental changes in the helpful bacteria that live within the human body, potentially increasing the risk of multiple sclerosis and other related diseases. ... Read More

MICE STUDY SUGGESTS POTENTIAL TREATMENT APPROACH FOR MS IN HUMANS
RESEARCH
Jul 03, 2019

MICE STUDY SUGGESTS POTENTIAL TREATMENT APPROACH FOR MS IN HUMANS

For decades medical researchers have known that an effective way to combat multiple sclerosis (MS) would be to suppress the human immune system, since the debilitating disease is caused by the immune system 'mistakenly' attacking tissues in the spine and brain. However, this kind of treatment would cripple the body's ability to control ordinary infections, leading to more serious conditions or even death.... Read More

THE SCIENCE OF CREATING TRANSLATIONAL TEAMS
RESEARCH
Jun 21, 2019

THE SCIENCE OF CREATING TRANSLATIONAL TEAMS

Though already known for their focus on clinical research, the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition has looked to strengthen its research efforts through the development of a translational research program. In 2018, Dr. Ellen Beswick, PhD, was recruited to develop and lead this new research program. Dr. Beswick’s background is in chronic inflammation and the mucosal immune microenvironment, particularly focused on inflammatory bowel diseases and gastrointestinal cancers. She is an National Institute of Health (NIH) funded investigator recently recruited from the University of New Mexico, where she gained experience in translational approaches, mentorship, and building multidisciplinary science teams. ... Read More

RESTRICTED DIETS TO MEDIATE FOOD ALLERGIES CAN PRODUCE UNHEALTHY EATING HABITS
RESEARCH
May 16, 2019

RESTRICTED DIETS TO MEDIATE FOOD ALLERGIES CAN PRODUCE UNHEALTHY EATING HABITS

Celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome, crohn’s disease and anaphylactic are all instigated by food allergies. Doctors order restrictive diets to help patients control inflammation and food reactions. While less well known, eosinophilic esophagitis (EOE) is another inflammatory disease triggered by food allergies. One of the most effective treatments, especially for young children, is a restricted diet that reduces the allergy-induced inflammation. In a new study, University of Utah Health explored the long-term psychological impact of food restrictions on normal eating patterns in patients. The results are available in the April issue of the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. ... Read More

JAVITS AWARD FUNDS NEW RESEARCH INTO ROLE OF INFECTION IN EPILEPSY
RECOGNITION
May 06, 2019

JAVITS AWARD FUNDS NEW RESEARCH INTO ROLE OF INFECTION IN EPILEPSY

Temporal lobe epilepsy is a seizure disorder that may result from head trauma, childhood injuries, tumors, brain malformations, and infections. Karen Wilcox, PhD, Chair of Pharmacology and Toxicology at University of Utah Health, received a $2.6 million Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the National Institutes of Health National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) to explore the role of infection in an intractable, non-genetic-form of epilepsy. Repeated brain injuries, even minor ones, can degrade the health of neurons in the brain, which can lead to memory loss, anxiety, agitation and mood swings. Researchers at University of Utah Health and University of Washington found an FDA-approved cancer drug paclitaxel offers protection to mice after experiencing mild traumatic brain injuries, also referred to as mild TBI. The results of the study are available online on February 2nd in the Journal Alzheimer’s Disease.... Read More

RADIO INTERVIEW: ARE MEASLES REALLY THAT BIG OF A DEAL?
EDUCATION
May 01, 2019

RADIO INTERVIEW: ARE MEASLES REALLY THAT BIG OF A DEAL?

2019 isn’t even halfway over and already this is the worst year for measles cases in 25 years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says so far 704 people have been infected –most of them were not vaccinated. There have been no deaths reported yet from measles this year, though. So, is it really that serious? Back before the vaccine was widely available, the whole Brady Bunch came down with measles and it didn’t seem so bad. The Brady kids got to skip school and play monopoly all day. I know that’s just a 1960s TV show, but it’s been circulating online as evidence that all this concern about the measles today is overblown. ... Read More

NOVEL TREATMENTS OFFER NEW HOPE FOR PATIENTS WITH AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE
RESEARCH
Mar 04, 2019

NOVEL TREATMENTS OFFER NEW HOPE FOR PATIENTS WITH AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE

Autoimmune diseases, including type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis, arise when the body’s immune cells attack itself. Current treatments eliminate these misfunctioning immune cells, but also destroy normal, protective immune cells, leaving patients susceptible to immune deficiency and opportunistic infections. Researchers at University of Utah Health have developed a new approach that targets the misfunctioning immune cells while leaving normal immune cells in place. The results of their study are available online in the March 4 issue of Nature Biomedical Engineering.... Read More

A GOOD OFFENSE ISN’T ALWAYS THE BEST STRATEGY IN THE BATTLE OF HOST VS. VIRUS
RESEARCH
Feb 13, 2019

A GOOD OFFENSE ISN’T ALWAYS THE BEST STRATEGY IN THE BATTLE OF HOST VS. VIRUS

The human immune system is notorious for overreacting to common infections or going to war with harmless substances like dust or pollen. Its efforts to mount these defenses often exact a toll on the body it was trying to defend. In the February issue of Cell Host & Microbe, researchers from the University of Utah, Department of Human Genetics, have published an investigation into how one component of the immune system might have evolved to limit this collateral damage.... Read More

NEW STUDY FINDS BACTERIAL REMAINS IN BRAIN LESIONS OF MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS PATIENTS
RESEARCH
Feb 04, 2019

NEW STUDY FINDS BACTERIAL REMAINS IN BRAIN LESIONS OF MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS PATIENTS

When you fall and scrape your knee, the injured tissue forms a red bump or lesion. Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an unpredictable autoimmune disease, characterized by lesions in the brain. These lesions, like the scrape on your knee, result from tissue injured as the overactive immune system degrades the myelin sheath surrounding the nerve fibers in the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves.... Read More

CANCER DRUG SHOWS PROMISE IN MITIGATING CONCUSSIVE BRAIN INJURIES
RESEARCH
Feb 02, 2019

CANCER DRUG SHOWS PROMISE IN MITIGATING CONCUSSIVE BRAIN INJURIES

With Super Bowl LIII on the horizon, Americans are gearing up to celebrate the modern-day clash of the titans. For many, football has become a taboo topic, as former fans abandon the sport to protest traumatic brain injuries caused by players hurling their bodies against one another again and again and again. Repeated brain injuries, even minor ones, can degrade the health of neurons in the brain, which can lead to memory loss, anxiety, agitation and mood swings. Researchers at University of Utah Health and University of Washington found an FDA-approved cancer drug paclitaxel offers protection to mice after experiencing mild traumatic brain injuries, also referred to as mild TBI. The results of the study are available online on February 2nd in the Journal Alzheimer’s Disease.... Read More

NEWLY AWARDED 3I SEED GRANT PROJECTS EXPLORE IMMUNITIES AND VACCINES
RECOGNITION
Dec 18, 2018

NEWLY AWARDED 3I SEED GRANT PROJECTS EXPLORE IMMUNITIES AND VACCINES

The Immunology, Inflammation and Infectious Disease Initiative (3i) at the University of Utah Health has awarded seed grants to eight collaborative research projects. The funded projects will explore alternative treatments and diagnoses for many human disorders, including influenzas, cancers and infections. ... Read More

SHEPHERD RECEIVES $2.5M TO STUDY ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE FROM CHAN-ZUCKERBERG INITIATIVE
RESEARCH
Dec 06, 2018

SHEPHERD RECEIVES $2.5M TO STUDY ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE FROM CHAN-ZUCKERBERG INITIATIVE

Jason Shepherd, Ph.D., assistant professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at University of Utah Health, is one of 17 recipients of the inaugural Ben Barres Early Career Acceleration Award from the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative. The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, and his wife Pricilla Chan to provide new solutions to human disease. A major goal of the initiative is to bring new people with innovative ideas that solve intractable problems, in this case neurodegeneration.... Read More

Want To Tackle Pediatric Diarrhea? There's An App For That!
RESEARCH
Nov 28, 2018

Want To Tackle Pediatric Diarrhea? There's An App For That!

Leung received $806,000 from the Gates Foundation to develop and test a smartphone app to help clinicians determine the cause of diarrhea in young children. According to Leung, clinicians working in resource-limited settings frequently do not have the ability to order labs to identify whether a virus or bacterium is responsible for a bout of diarrhea. Instead, they rely on their gut instinct with some guidance from the WHO International Management of Childhood Illness guidelines on when to prescribe antibiotics.... Read More

A Bad Influence: The Interplay between Tumor Cells and Immune Cells
RESEARCH
Oct 16, 2018

A Bad Influence: The Interplay between Tumor Cells and Immune Cells

Research at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) at the University of Utah (U of U) yielded new insights into the environment surrounding different types of lung tumors, and described how these complex cell ecosystems may in turn ultimately affect response to treatment. The results were published today in Immunity and featured on the print cover of the journal.dwide..... Read More

RESEARCH AWARDS PASS $500M MILESTONE
RECOGNITION
Sep 09, 2018

RESEARCH AWARDS PASS $500M MILESTONE

With the accumulated efforts of the University of Utah’s faculty, students and administrators in departments and colleges from all corners of campus, and with decades of building quality researchers and exemplary programs and institutes, the U achieved its most successful research funding year ever in 2018, passing a $500 million milestone. The final total is actually $515 million, and it’s composed of grants large and small, from thousands of dollars to study the structural health of Utah’s rock arches to millions of dollars to discover non-opioid painkillers.... Read More

TCR signals control T cell fate
RESEARCH
Aug 23, 2018

TCR signals control T cell fate

Jeremy Snook, a graduate student in the Williams lab, has recently published an article in Science Immunology that explores the impact of TCR signal strength on the development of CD4+ T effector and memory of T cells. This work sheds important light on the mechanisms that promote diverse T cell functions during their response to viral and bacterial infections.... Read More

RECOGNITION
Jun 18, 2018

Jesica Jacobs AAI PPFP

Dr. Jesica Jacobs, a post doctoral fellow in Dr. Brian Evavold’s lab in the Division of Microbiology and Immunology, has been awarded a Public Policy Fellowship from the American Association of Immunologists. Each year, the AAI selects up to 10 junior scientists from across the nation to participate in this prestigious program. Public Policy Fellows participate in advocacy for scientific funding on Capitol Hill along with members of the AAI Committee on Public Affairs, which includes Pathology Chairman Dr. Peter Jensen. Fellows are given the opportunity to meet with their district’s Congressional representatives and other legislators on the Hill to help shape the future of biomedical research. Dr. Jacobs is the first Fellow to be selected from the University of Utah... Read More

RECOGNITION
Jun 14, 2018

Malaria-Fighting Biochemist Paul Sigala Named Pew Scholar

Paul Sigala, Ph.D., assistant professor of biochemistry at University of Utah Health, was named a 2018 Pew Scholar for his lab’s interdisciplinary approach to developing novel methods for combatting malaria, one of the most common infectious diseases and a public health threat worldwide..... Read More

RECOGNITION
Jun 06, 2018

Matt Williams Awarded Watkins Endowed Chair

The C. Scott and Dorothy E. Watkins Endowed Chair in Honor of Ernst J. Eichwald, M.D. was established in 1999 to promote research and education within the Department of Pathology. The recipient is named for a 3-year term and is nominated by a committee comprised of prior chair holders. The Department of Pathology is pleased to announce the selection of Matt Williams as the 2018 – 2021 recipient. Matt joins a distinguished group of prior recipients including Carl Wittwer, Sherrie Perkins, Janis Weis, Joe Holden, David Stillman, Wade Samowitz, and Dean Tantin.... Read More

RECOGNITION
May 30, 2018

Heejoo Kim wins prestigious AAI Careers in Immunology Fellowship

Heejoo Kim, MS/DVM, a PhD graduate student in Dr. Dean Tantin’s lab, has won a year-long fellowship from the American Association of Immunologists (AAI). Congratulations Heejoo on being recognized in this competitive process. Heejoo will use the fellowship to further her work on transcriptional control of T cell memory and autoimmunity...... Read More

Sigala Awarded Department of Defense Discovery Award
RESEARCH
Mar 20, 2018

Sigala Awarded Department of Defense Discovery Award

Paul Sigala, Ph.D., Assistant Professor – Biochemistry, has been selected as a recipient of a Department of Defense Discovery Award under the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program for his grant application entitled “Evaluation of Carotenoid Biosynthesis as an Antimalarial Drug Target.”... Read More

RESEARCH
Mar 15, 2018

Collaboration with Janssen Advances Critical Research

Three research groups at University of Utah Health are collaborating with Janssen Research & Development, LLC (“Janssen”) to advance the study of colorectal cancer, diabetic kidney disease, and juvenile idiopathic arthritis respectively.... Read More

RESEARCH
Mar 09, 2018

Intruder Alert: Cell Surveillance System Distinguishes Virus from Self

It is important to know when to sound the alarm and when to avoid calling the police on your housemate rather than an intruder. Our cells face a similar task—is the invader a virus or just something that looks like a virus? To make matters worse, ancient viruses have left little pieces of themselves all over our genomes. Some of these ancient relics form a molecule called double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) that looks just like dsRNA made by a virus.... Read More

Mollaoglu and Wallace Selected for 68th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting
RECOGNITION
Mar 02, 2018

Mollaoglu and Wallace Selected for 68th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

Gurkan Mollaoglu, a Ph.D. graduate student in the Oliver lab, and Jared Wallace, a Ph.D. graduate student in the O'Connell Lab, has successfully passed a multi-stage, international application process to participate in the 68th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, which is dedicated to physiology and medicine.... Read More

Pires selected for travel award and podium presentation at NIDDK meeting
RECOGNITION
Mar 01, 2018

Pires selected for travel award and podium presentation at NIDDK meeting

Dr. Karla Pires, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow in the Boudina lab, has been selected for a podium presentation and a travel award grant for her work on autophagy and adipose inflammation entitled “Ablation of adipocytes autophagy induces insulin resistance and reveals new roles for lipid peroxides and Nrf2 signaling in adipose-liver crosstalk” at the NIDDK Autophagy as a Common Pathway in Diseases 2018 meeting. ... Read More

RESEARCH
Feb 01, 2018

A Field-friendly Test for Cholera Reigns in Disease

Scientists at University of Utah Health have developed a test that can quickly identify populations that had been recently infected with cholera. The new test can be easily deployed in the field as a first step in deciding on the most effective way to curb the spread of disease.... Read More