Archive | December 2009

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Year in Review 2009

For this week betwixt holidays, I will be tinkering with the blog’s design and taking care of assorted other housekeeping tasks. So if the site is experiencing technical difficulties when you visit this week, never fear – barring WordPress catastrophe, we’ll be back with new posts in the new year. Provided the site remains readable […]

The “Miserable Snake” of Cardiovascular Disease

In today’s New England Journal of Medicine, a large team of geneticists unveil evidence for a genetic polymorphism that increases the risk for cardiovascular disease in as many as 1 out of 6 people. That’s pretty big news. But the culprit identified in their genome-wide assay is not a new character on the cardiology scene: […]

Reshuffling Cancer’s Deck with Tumor Genomes

If you want to describe cancer in the fewest words possible, try this: When Genetics Go Wrong. All cancers can be traced back to genetic mutations, either in genes meant to help the cell “self-destruct” when damaged or in genes that promote the replication of cells. Tracking down the genetic origin of a particular cancer […]

Diagnosing Kids’ Sleep Apnea in a Cup

When an adult snores, it’s annoying. When a kid snores, it’s mostly cute. But as David Gozal, chairman of pediatrics at Comer Children’s Hospital explains, those nighttime noises aren’t always innocuous. “Snoring is not benign in kids,” Gozal said. “Snoring is clearly something that we need to not just make fun of but actually think […]

Bad Santa, or Bad Science Reporting?

Is Santa Claus a risk factor for obesity, swine flu and drunk-driving? And if you saw such a headline, would you think it was a joke? That’s the cautionary tale floating about on this (admittedly slow) science news week, as a scientific article in the esteemed British Medical Journal entitled “Santa Claus: a public health […]

Linkage 12/17: Around the Quad and Holiday Risk Factors

Hyde Park Research Flurries There’s been a lot of great research around the University of Chicago this week that hasn’t fallen into our territory at the Medical Center. Not that we’re jealous – we had cancer-fighting nanodiscs and sharp-toothed dinosaurs, after all! But in case you missed these stories from other departments around campus, here’s […]

Viral Video Meets Scientific Discovery

I don’t have the social media expertise to judge why particular videos go viral, what pushes certain clips to the tipping point that allows them to tear across the internet and demographics. Most of these videos seem to be of the squirrel-on-water-skis curiosity variety, but every once in a while, a significant scientific finding penetrates […]

Dr. FAQ: Mary Russell on Holiday Diets

The latest in our video series where experts from the University of Chicago Medical Center answer frequently asked questions about popular medical topics. To suggest a topic or a question, please contact the editors. As much a part of modern holiday tradition as presents, parades and parties is the New Year’s resolution to lose weight, […]

Dinosaurs From Space! (OK, Not Really)

We spend a lot of time on ScienceLife talking about human disease and intricate biological research, so it’s important to take a break every once in a while and stir the inner 8-year-old in all of us with one glorious word: DINOSAURS! Woah! That fine illustration by artist Jorge Gonzalez depicts three Triassic carnivores, the […]

Nano-Pancakes to Fight Brain Cancer

Brain tumors are some of the hardest cancers to treat – unresponsive to treatment, difficult to access surgically, and quick to grow. Surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy drugs may all be enlisted to fight off a malignant glioma, but still the prognosis is often measured in months, according to Maciej Lesniak, associate professor of surgery and […]


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