A new five-year, $3.5 million grant from the National Cancer Institute will kick off a large clinical trial aimed at improving the quality of life and survival of medically vulnerable patients after they receive a transplant of donated blood-forming stem cells. Grantee Dr. Mohamed Sorror of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center will lead the new trial. “These patients do the worst after transplant. How…
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For the first time, a team of researchers has found a specific place in the human genome where variations can raise a person’s risk of erectile dysfunction. The study, Genetic variation in the SIM1 locus is associated with erectile dysfunction, was published Oct. 8 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “This study points to a new research direction for erectile…
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Allen Institute Releases Data from 30,000 Brain Cells in Action

The Allen Institute for Brain Science, a division of the Allen Institute, today announced new data aimed at helping researchers understand the various types of cells in the brain and how cells compute visual information. Joining these new data is a software toolkit for building models of the neuronal networks making up the brain more easily and more reproducibly. Scientists…
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Standard Myeloma Treatment Reveals Itself as an Immunotherapy

New research suggests that doctors may have had an incorrect understanding of how a standard treatment for an incurable blood cancer works to prolong lives. The therapy, based around high doses of chemotherapy or radiation, looks like it may actually be an immunotherapy — that is, a treatment that stimulates the patients’ own immune systems to help fight their cancers.…
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UW Medicine researchers are exploring a potential new approach to treating the common childhood cancer acute lymphocyte  leukemia, or ALL. ALL, a blood cancer, represents approximately 25 percent of cancer diagnoses in the newborn to 15-year-old age range. More than 3,000 new cases of ALL are diagnosed every year in the United States, and the incidence is rising. Matt Hart, a postdoc  in…
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Each morning, 8-year-old Erin Cross springs out of bed excited to go to school. A third grader in Chester, England, she loves science and math, and imagines a future as a researcher making “potions” in a lab. She loves cracking jokes, rugby and playing make-believe games with her friends on the playground. For Erin, who spent most of her life…
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UW Medicine and Seattle Children’s announced Oct. 9 that Dr. Leslie R. Walker-Harding has been named chair of the UW School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics, associate dean for the UW School of Medicine and senior vice president/chief academic officer for Seattle Children’s. Walker-Harding will assume her new position on Feb. 15, 2019. Walker-Harding is currently a professor and chair…
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Seattle researchers are addressing government concerns about viral outbreaks in the United States through the development of the flu patch. This unique method of delivering vaccinations makes healthcare more accessible to Americans and potentially people around the world. The Infectious Disease Research Institute (IDRI), a Seattle-based nonprofit that produces diagnostic tools and vaccines to solve global health challenges, was approached…
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Major Advance Reported in Understanding Antibiotic Resistance

Scientists at the University of Montana (UM) and the University of Washington have discovered how pathogenic bacteria resist antibiotic treatment and recently published their findings in an article titled (“Entropically-driven aggregation of bacteria by host polymers promotes antibiotic tolerance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa”) in the Proceedings of the Natural Academy of Sciences. “Bacteria causing chronic infections are generally observed living in cell aggregates suspended in…
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The Gut Microbiome and Brain Health

Bacteroides, Bifidobacteirum, Faecalibacterium, Ruminococcus– these are the names of some of the 100 trillion bacteria who are living and working in your gut. These microscopic critters, collectively known as the microbiome, help our body to digest food, process nutrients, make vitamins B and K, and produce immune molecules that fight inflammation and heal wounds. The most impressive role of this busy…
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