Studying twins from birth through age 2, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown that the gut’s immune system develops in sync with the gut’s tens of trillions of microbes. The findings have implications for understanding healthy growth and, potentially, the origins of various immune disorders.
Researchers from Washington University in St. Louis and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis made a discovery that uncovers the molecular logic of how dividing cells are stopped in their tracks. The team zeroed in on a specific protein, whose job is to stop a cell from dividing or to slow the division.
People who suffer itching with no clear cause may have previously unrecognized immune system defects. In a small study of such patients, researchers from the Center for the Study of Itch at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis identified immune system irregularities that may prompt the urge to scratch.
A survey of more than 216,000 adolescents from all 50 states indicates the number of teens with marijuana-related problems is declining. Similarly, the rates of marijuana use by young people are falling despite the fact more U.S. states are legalizing or decriminalizing marijuana use and the number of adults using the drug has increased. Researchers at the School of Medicine examine the data.
Medical professionals have long known that the buildup of plaque in arteries can cause them to narrow and harden, potentially leading to a whole host of health problems — including heart attack, heart disease and stroke. While high blood pressure and artery stiffness are often associated with plaque buildup, new research from engineers at Washington University in St. Louis shows they are not the direct causes. Their findings suggest a new culprit: elastic fibers in the arterial wall.
Children with mild to moderate persistent asthma are at greater risk of developing chronic lung disease as young adults and, therefore, may require lifelong treatment even if their asthma symptoms subside for extended periods, according to a major national study co-led by researchers at the School of Medicine.
Rohit V. Pappu, the Edwin H. Murty Professor of Engineering in the School of Engineering & Applied Science at Washington University in St. Louis, has received two grants from the National Institutes of Health totaling more than $4.5 million to study the causes behind Huntington’s disease that may ultimately provide clues for a treatment or cure.
Using a new imaging agent that binds to tau protein and makes it visible in positron emission tomography (PET) scans, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown that measures of tau are better markers of the cognitive decline characteristic of Alzheimer’s than measures of amyloid beta seen in PET scans.
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria most often are associated with hospitals and other health-care settings, but a new study from the School of Medicine indicates that chicken coops and sewage treatment plants also are hot spots of antibiotic resistance.
Two mouse models of Zika virus infection in pregnancy have been developed by a team of researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The models provide a basis to develop vaccines and treatments, and to study the biology of Zika virus infection in pregnancy.