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Christina Polito

2011 News

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  • October 13, 2011

    Precision with Stem Cells a Step Forward for Treating M.S., Other Diseases

    Areas in red indicate mouse brain cells coated with myelin, a crucial substance lacking in patients with M.S.

    A diverse group of scientists – experts in cardiology, neurology, immunology, microbiology and chemistry – are teaming up to study drugs that show promise in the treatment of dementia for the treatment of an equally debilitating disease – heart failure. In this case, the connection between the head and the heart lies in a particular enzyme that they believe plays a role in the development of both conditions.

    The team, headed by Burns C. Blaxall, Ph.D., Harris A. “Handy” Gelbard, M.D., Ph.D., and Stephen Dewhurst, Ph.D., recently won the largest grant awarded to date by the University's Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) – $250,000 over two years. The grant, part of the CTSI's newly initiated Incubator Program, is larger than most awarded by the Medical Center.

    Thomas Pearson, M.D., Ph.D., who heads the CTSI and helped develop the new program, says tremendous weight was given to forming new teams that had never worked together before, and for these teams to study things they had never addressed before. The Blaxall/Gelbard/Dewhurst team fit the bill on both counts.

  • September 7, 2011

    Stem Cell Efforts to Treat Neurological Disease Bolstered With $4.5 Million

    Human oligodendrocytes and astrocytes generated from human neural progenitor cells.

    The endeavor to find better treatments or perhaps even one day a cure for a host of debilitating and fatal neurological diseases has been bolstered by an influx of funding from a mix of private and public sources.

    he laboratory headed by Steven Goldman, M.D., Ph.D., chair of the Department of Neurology at the University of Rochester Medical Center, has received $4.5 million in new funding to further its efforts to use stem cells and related molecules to treat several feared disorders for which there are currently no cures – including multiple sclerosis, Huntington's disease, and fatal childhood diseases known as pediatric leukodystrophies.

  • July 13, 2011

    Two Rochester Scientists among Top Parkinson Researchers

    Two scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center are among the world's top researchers in the area of Parkinson disease, according to a recent study.

    Karl Kieburtz, M.D., M.P.H., and Kim Tieu, Ph.D., are among the researchers cited in a recent study published last month in the Journal of Parkinson's Disease. The study was done by Aaron Sorensen of GE Healthcare and publishing consultant David Weedon.

    The study analyzed the number of times a scientist's work has been cited by other scientists, the amount of new research that the person has published, and the ripple effect of the work in Parkinson disease as well as other areas.

    Both Kieburtz and Tieu are among the 100 scientists whose work has been cited most during the last decade by other scientists doing research on the disease. Also on the list is Ira Shoulson, M.D., a former University of Rochester neurologist who is now at Georgetown. Altogether, research by the three was cited more than 6,500 times during the last decade by other scientists.

  • February 17, 2011

    NSC Graduate Student Awarded NIH Individual Predoctoral Fellowship Award

    Crystal McClain, a graduate student in Neuroscience, was awarded an NIH Individual Predoctoral Fellowship Award. Crystal currently works in the Goldman Lab and studies the signaling pathways of both fetal and adult glial progenitor cells, and the molecular bases for the fate decisions that determine whether progenitors become oligodendrocytes or astrocytes, a key determinant of both remyelination and gliosis after injury.

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