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August 28, 2017

Media Availability: NHLBI scientists available to discuss research advances during National Sickle Cell Awareness Month in September

September is National Sickle Cell Awareness Month and experts from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) are available to discuss recent research advances and directions in sickle cell disease, a devastating genetic disease. Among the researchers available to speak to reporters is Dr. John Tisdale, whose work on stem cell transplantation was prominently featured in the Discovery documentary First in Human, which aired in August.

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November 15, 2017 : JAMA

Researchers are reporting that a type of stem cell therapy called granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) did not improve walking ability in people with peripheral artery disease (PAD), a condition in which plaque builds up in the arteries of the legs, causing pain and weakness when walking. In a clinical trial (the PROPEL Randomized Clinical Trial) of 210 people with PAD, the researchers tested the effects of GM-CSF either alone or in combination with exercise to treat walking impairment.  Neither treatment improved walking.  Exercise alone, however, lead to significant improvements. "Although this trial showed no added benefit of stem cell mobilization by GM-CSF in individuals with PAD, it yet again confirmed the benefits of exercise on walking capacity that have been observed in previous studies," said Dr. Diane Reid, a National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) project officer for the study and a medical officer in the NHLBI Vascular Biology and Hypertension Branch. "Prompt reporting of negative clinical trial results, as done here, provides valuable information to guide the future directions of research on potential new therapeutics."  The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, was partly funded by NHLBI.

Doctors Lounge: Supervised Exercise Ups 6-Minute Walking Distance in PAD

Healio: PROPEL: Cell therapy does not boost walking performance in PAD

MedPage Today: AHA: Cell Therapy Disappoints in PAD Patients

EurekAlert! (Northwestern Univ. press release): Stem cells fail to alleviate peripheral artery disease

November 10, 2017 : American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine

Researchers are reporting new evidence that sleep apnea—a common disorder that can cause people to snore frequently during sleep—may increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.  A team of scientists studied 208 men and women aged 55 to 90, most of whom had sleep apnea but did not have any type of diagnosed dementia. After two years, the scientists found that those who suffered from more severe sleep apnea had certain chemical markers in their spinal fluid indicating increased levels of beta amyloid, a type of brain plaque associated with Alzheimer’s. In addition, brain imaging scans in some of the more severe apnea patients confirmed an increase in amyloid plaque. The study, published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, was partly funded by NHLBI.

UPI: Sleep apnea may increase risk for Alzheimer's disease  

Business Standard: This sleep disorder puts you at high Alzheimer’s risk

Medical News Today: Obstructive sleep apnea linked to higher Alzheimer's risk

The Times of India: This sleep disorder can lead to Alzheimer’s disease Sleep Apnea May Boost Alzheimer's Risk