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November 18, 2016

NIH researchers uncover how protein helps body ward off bacterial skin infections

A protein known to promote allergic diseases in people helps the body defend against Staphylococcus aureus, a leading cause of bacterial skin infections in the United States, according to a study appearing in the November 18 issue of Science Immunology.

The study authors from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) say the finding offers insights that could be used to help improve treatments for staph-related infections, including the potentially deadly methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, commonly known as MRSA.

November 15, 2016

New biomarkers may lead to first reliable blood test for detecting alcohol misuse

A team of researchers led by NIH scientists from the Framingham Heart Study says it has identified a group of new chemical markers in the blood that could provide the basis for the first reliable blood test to detect heavy alcohol use. In addition to screening ordinary citizens for signs of alcohol misuse, such a diagnostic test could be used to screen airline pilots, bus drivers, train conductors, and others whose jobs directly affect the public safety. These biomarkers could also help shed light on the molecular basis of alcohol addiction, identify patients at high risk for alcoholism, and lead to new strategies for treating the disease, the researchers say. The study, the largest of its kind to evaluate blood markers for alcohol misuse, will appear in Molecular Psychiatry on November 15.

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December 30, 2016 : Medical Xpress

A gene called HOX9 has been shown to limit the ability of adult muscle stem cells to regenerate themselves, according to research appearing in Nature. The work, with funding from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, may be a therapeutic target for improving regenerative medicine.

November 28, 2016 : NBC News

Ever wonder why some people become heavy drinkers while others are able to do so in moderation?  That answer may be in our genes.  Researchers are reporting the discovery of a gene, called beta-Klotho, that seems to regulate our ability to drink alcohol.  In lab studies, they found that mice engineered to lack this gene drank more than normal mice. Using records of more than 100,000 people of European descent, the researchers also found that people with a version of this gene drink less alcohol on average.   The finding could lead to new treatments for people with alcohol use disorders, they say. The study is partly funded by NHLBI and appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

December 3, 2016 to December 6, 2016
San Diego, CA
The National Institutes of Health National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) will be participating in 58th American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting from December 3 – 6 in San Diego, California. NHLBI research and NHLBI-funded research will be presented at more than 40 sessions. See the schedule below for a snapshot of NHLBI’s sessions at the ASH Annual Meeting. Schedule is subject to change.