From the use of antibiotics to prevent and treat infections in children with sickle cell disease to the FDA approval of the drug hydroxyurea, researchers have made steady progress during the last few decades in improving the lives of individuals with sickle cell disease. Yet still, a widely available cure has remained just out of reach. Now, work from a team of researchers at the National Institutes of Health, including NHLBI's Dr. John Tisdale may open the door to reversing sickle cell disease in more patients.
When NIH researchers talk about genome-wide association studies (GWAS), they're often talking about research that compares DNA markers across the genome in people with a disease to people without the disease. In the case of NHLBI's Dr. Susan Harbison, she's most likely talking about the DNA and genome of Drosophilia, aka, the common fruit fly.
When Dr. Bernadine Healy passed away in 2011, she left behind a legacy of bolstering biomedical research on women's health. While Director of the NIH, she established a policy to fund only those clinical trials that included both men and women when the condition being studied affected both sexes. It was during her tenure as NIH director that the NIH launched the landmark Women's Health Initiative, which is now housed within the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
The statistics are startling: 50-70 million U.S. adults have sleep or wakefulness disorders, which account for $50 billion dollars in lost productivity each year. And even those who don’t have a diagnosed disorder often are affected by lack of sleep, asd evidenced by the fact that one-third of Americans get fewer than seven hours of sleep per night.
Dr. Warren Leonard, chief of the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology and director of the Immunology Center at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, studied the basic aspects of the interleukin-2 receptor. This research into IL-2 led he and his team Â to the realization that mutations of the gamma chain of the receptor resulted in X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency in humans, aka, the Bubble Boy Disease.
As web-surfing consumers, we know that potentially every online search or purchase is being tracked, mined and analyzed as ‘big data' that retailers use to optimize and customize their marketing pitch to us. As physicians, we gather information about our patients all the time, at every visit. And like major online retailers, we should be learning something about our patients from all of the information we gather, gleaning insights into how to better treat not only that particular patient, but all patients. However, many would argue that not only are we doing an inadequate job at capturing that information, but also at mining the information we do gather to improve care.
The NIH Centers for Accelerated Innovations is an NHLBI-funded initiative to improve how basic science advances and discoveries are translated into commercially viable products that improve patient care and advance public health. NHLBI Director Dr. Gary H. Gibbons, M.D., talks with three leaders in the field of moving discoveries into clinical practice.
In June, the NHLBI announced that the Institute was focusing its efforts on knowledge generation and evidence synthesis by implementing a new collaborative partnership model to develop new cardiovascular clinical practice guidelines based upon NHLBI-sponsored systematic evidence reviews. Four of the five Expert Panels/Working Groups embraced the collaborative model and worked successfully with the American Heart Association (AHA), the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and other professional societies to develop new cardiovascular disease (CVD) clinical practice guidelines for lifestyle, risk assessment, cholesterol, and obesity.
Estimates place the number of people worldwide living with asthma at 300 million. In the U.S., one in every 11 children and one in every six African American children has asthma. The prevalence of this condition and its disproportionate impact on minorities and families at or below the poverty line make it a priority research area for the NHLBI and Dr. Monica Kraft from Duke University.
More than 30 years ago, the NHLBI funded the Stroke Prevention Trial in Sickle Cell Anemia (STOP) trial, which found that patients at high risk for stroke could be identified using trans-cranial Doppler (TCD) ultrasound, and that the incidence of stroke could be reduced by 90 percent in those children by periodic blood transfusion for at least 36 months. That important study began the NHLBI's long legacy of transformative research into sickle cell disease, an area of research that remains a top priority for the institute today.