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May 18, 2016

Study shows telomere length in humans can be altered by medical drugs

WHAT:  Scientists at the National Institutes of Health are reporting evidence that human telomeres can be favorably lengthened by medical drug treatment.  Telomeres are the ends of our chromosomes and function to protect them from damage. Over time, telomeres shorten, and this shortening has been linked with increased disease risk. The NIH results appear in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine.

May 12, 2016

Media Availability: Study finds COPD-like respiratory symptoms common among smokers despite lack of COPD diagnosis

WHAT:  In a finding that could lead to better treatment of smoking-related lung diseases, scientists are reporting that about half of current or former smokers have respiratory symptoms similar to COPD and an increased risk for exacerbations or “flare ups” of their symptoms despite normal lung function and a lack of COPD diagnosis.  Many of these individuals show COPD-like symptoms, such as shortness of breath and difficulty exercising.

May 12, 2016

Media Availability: Scientists Show Link Between Persistent Childhood Asthma and COPD

WHAT: Scientists funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute have shown a link between persistent childhood asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Persistent asthma is characterized by recurrent breathing difficulties irrespective of medication use. COPD is a debilitating lung disease that typically affects current or former smokers in their 40s or older.

May 3, 2016

NIH statement on World Asthma Day 2016

On World Asthma Day 2016, the National Institutes of Health reaffirms its commitment to support research to improve the lives of all people with asthma. NIH-funded research has advanced our understanding of asthma as a disease as well as the impact asthma has on the lives of those affected.  We have made great strides in learning how to treat and prevent asthma, and we are committed to ensuring that scientific discoveries move quickly into clinical practice to provide the best possible care for all people with asthma.

May 2, 2016

Study Identifies Successful Weight-Gain Prevention Strategies for Young Adults

WHAT: Scientists funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute have identified strategies that might help young adults (aged 18 to 35 years) avoid weight gain. Their study, published May 2 in JAMA Internal Medicine, could help prevent obesity during this period, when individuals typically gain the most excess weight of their lifetimes. As many in this age group are typically parents of small children, the study also has the potential to break the cycle of obesity across generations.

April 18, 2016

Media Advisory: Heart failure findings among NHLBI-supported global health research highlighted in journal

WHAT: A study that found ischemic heart failure is more common in Kenya than experts had expected is among a number of new, National Institutes of Health-supported global health study findings highlighted in the March edition of the Global Heart journal. This edition of the journal is dedicated to NIH-supported research aimed at reducing cardiovascular and lung disease burden and also boosting research capacity in low- and middle-income nations.

April 5, 2016

Novel Drug Combo and Donor Genetic Modifications Enable Record-breaking Survival Time for Pig-to-Primate Heart Transplant

WHAT:  Scientists have developed a novel immune-suppressing drug regimen that, when used in combination with genetically-modified pig organs, has enabled the longest-to-date survival of a heart transplant from a pig to a primate (baboon). Their study, published online in Nature Communications, could lead to expanded use of xenotransplantation—organ transplants between different species—possibly providing relief for the severe organ shortage among human patients awaiting transplantation.

April 4, 2016

Antiarrhythmic drugs found beneficial when used by EMS treating cardiac arrest

Researchers have confirmed that certain heart rhythm medications, when given by paramedics to patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest who had failed electrical shock treatment, improved likelihood of patients surviving transport to the hospital. The study was published online in the New England Journal of Medicine and helps answer a longstanding scientific question about the effectiveness of two widely-used antiarrhythmic drugs, amiodarone and lidocaine, for treating sudden cardiac arrest.  

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