Journal Club

Highlighting recently published papers selected by Academy members

Category Archives: Medical Sciences

Diagnosing asthma from a single drop of blood

Asthma affects more than 300 million people worldwide, and over the past 30 years, the prevalence of asthma has risen significantly in many populations. Unfortunately, asthma is notoriously difficult to diagnose. Now scientists have developed a handheld device that could … Continue reading

Categories: Engineering | Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

Short fuse, short telomeres

Men who live a high-stress life—with few social resources, low levels of optimism, and above-average levels of hostility—show signs of the stress in their cells. The ends of their chromosomes, so-called telomeres which wear down naturally as a person ages, … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Social Sciences | Leave a comment

Platelets as enzyme factories

The body of an average, healthy adult produces more than two hundred billion new platelets every day. The small cell fragments circulate through the blood stream, helping form blood clots and release growth hormones, for only a matter of days … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

Drugs designed to target specific forms of iron might become disease fighters

Abnormal levels of a form of iron rise in the blood upon infection with parasites such as the ones behind malaria. Now scientists reveal they can design drugs that target this iron, report findings detailed in the Proceedings of the … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

Some stress is important for a healthy heart

Stress is linked with heart disease. Perhaps counterintuitively, experiments in mice now reveal the absence of stress may cause them to die prematurely from heart failure, report results detailed this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

Microfluidics chip to predict heart attack risk

By the time an average American turns 35, two out of three individuals will have some number of fatty deposits–called atherosclerotic plaques–stuck to the insides of their blood vessels. As they age, if plaques continue to accumulate and grow, one … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

An ad a day keeps the doctor away

During the commercial break of your favorite television show, the advertisements that play out in front of you don’t just influence your opinions of companies and shopping habits; the ads also could affect how your body responds to drugs. Watching … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Psychological and Cognitive Sciences | 1 Comment

Making blood transfusions safer

Is blood safe for you? Blood transfusions are one of the most common procedures in medicine, but a host of recent studies have suggested many blood transfusions can actually inflict harm, such as heart attack, kidney injury, multi-organ failure and … Continue reading

Categories: Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

The physics of clogged arteries: A “micro” story

What do rubber tires from the earliest automobiles have in common with fatty atherosclerotic plaques inside blood vessels in the human body? The way they rupture, it turns out, is driven by the same physical processes. In the 1920s, rubber … Continue reading

Categories: Engineering | Medical Sciences | Leave a comment

An antihistamine’s hidden talent: Fighting prion disease

When they screened a library of existing drugs for their ability to treat neurodegenerative prion diseases, one team of researchers was in for a surprise. Astemizole, an antihistamine that’s been used to treat seasonal allergies since the 1970s, lengthened the … Continue reading

Categories: Cell Biology | Medical Sciences | Leave a comment