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August 2018

On a mission: $12 million state appropriation earmarked for Jordan's syndrome

August 13, 2018

Nine teams, including UC Davis stem cell researchers, pursue a cure for rare disorder with links to autism, Alzheimer's disease and cancer

Study of cancer survival over 20-year period in California finds improvements for some, but not all

August 13, 2018

Better treatments and improved screening programs that detect cancer at earlier stages led to an overall 12 percent improvement in cancer survival in California, according to a new report from the UC Davis Institute for Population Health Improvement.

Attacking cultural trauma and dementia among Vietnamese immigrants

August 7, 2018

Oanh Meyer’s mother Anh Le, arrived in the United States in 1975 as a Vietnam War refugee just a few days before the fall of Saigon. And while she settled in America and raised a family, the trauma of living in war-torn Vietnam throughout the conflict took a toll on her.

Liquid biopsy could ease the way to immunotherapy for lung cancer

August 6, 2018

Researchers at UC Davis, Genentech and Foundation Medicine are the first to show that a blood-based test to assess tumor mutational burden (TMB) accurately identifies non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who could benefit from immunotherapies called checkpoint inhibitors. The blood test offers a much less invasive and more repeatable alternative to tissue testing. The study was published online today in Nature Medicine.

July 2018

NIH renews UC Davis Health's clinical research work in neurological disorders

July 27, 2018

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) announced this week that it has renewed  UC Davis Health in Sacramento for another five years as one of just two locations on the West Coast for its NeuroNEXT Network for Excellence in Neuroscience Clinical Trials.

Reproductive history may affect dementia risk

July 24, 2018

Research reported this week by UC Davis Health Professor Rachel Whitmer showed correlations between a dementia diagnosis in women and number of children, number of miscarriages, age at the time of first menstrual period, age at the start of natural menopause and total reproductive years. “The story of estrogen and the brain is just beginning," Whitmer said.

Oldham receives grant for pulmonary fibrosis biomarkers study

July 23, 2018

Justin Oldham, a specialist in the genetics and treatment of interstitial lung disease, has been awarded a CHEST Foundation research grant to study bloodstream biomarkers that can help predict therapeutic outcomes for patients with different types of pulmonary fibrosis.

New Study Pages website helps volunteers, patients find clinical trials at UC Davis Health

July 17, 2018

The MIND Institute's study of early social skills of infants and toddlers is just one of the ongoing clinical studies volunteers and patients can find on the new Study Pages website, a resource for healthy volunteers, patients and clinical investigators.

Community colleges can boost physician diversity and access to primary care

July 10, 2018

New UC Davis Health research shows that medical school graduates who attended community college are more likely to select family medicine for their residency training and to be from groups traditionally underrepresented in medicine. “If we want to expand the primary care workforce together with culturally competent care, we need to focus more on community college as an important pathway to medical school,” said lead author Efrain Talamantes.

June 2018

UC Davis lung physiology student gets the chance of a lifetime: Attending a meeting with 43 Nobel Laureates

June 29, 2018

Cameron Flayer, a doctoral student in physiology and toxicology at UC Davis Health, gets tips from Laureates about being successful in science.

Treating AFib with ablation reduces mortality and stroke

June 28, 2018

Using catheter-based ablation instead of medications alone reduces the risks of death and stroke in patients with the common form of heart arrhythmia known as atrial fibrillation, or AFib, new research from UC Davis physicians shows.

New model could illuminate autism subtype

June 27, 2018

Researchers at the UC Davis MIND Institute have created a mouse model for maternal antibody-related (MAR) autism spectrum disorder (ASD) that closely mimics the physiology and behaviors seen in people with this form of ASD. People with MAR ASD have been exposed to maternal autoantibodies, which can react with fetal brain tissue.

Survivors of gun crimes pay emotional cost

June 18, 2018

Victims of crimes committed with firearms suffer greater distress compared to victims of crimes involving other weapons or no weapons at all. As such, persons victimized with a firearm may require special attention with regard to their emotional well-being. Findings from a brief research report  by researchers at the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program (VPRP) are published in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Do excess fluids cause brain injuries in children with diabetic ketoacidosis?

June 13, 2018

For decades, clinicians have worried that giving too much intravenous fluid to children with diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) may contribute to brain swelling and injury, and even death. Now, after a national study that examined more than a thousand patients with DKA, UC Davis researchers and their colleagues from around the country have shown that fluid infusion does not cause  brain injury in children with DKA.

Can watching pro sports on TV prevent crime?

June 12, 2018

The entertainment provided by televised sporting events has a significant effect on crime in Chicago, reducing the number of violent, property and drug crime reports by as much as 25 percent during the hours of a given game, according to a study by the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program. The study published in the Journal of Sports Economics in May.

Stem cell transplants extend life for multiple myeloma patients

June 11, 2018

Researchers at UC Davis have confirmed that autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant improves survival for people suffering from multiple myeloma, yet many potentially eligible patients never undergo the procedure.

EMRAP: Undergrads on the front lines of emergency medicine

June 5, 2018

As a freshman, Sid Ganesh had just finished a class and found herself late to an internship and career fair on campus. At the fair, Ganesh hurried from table to table, collecting flyers for each program and opportunity. She then saw the EMRAP display.

May 2018

Levenson selected to receive the UC Davis Innovator of the Year award

May 16, 2018

Richard Levenson, professor and vice chair for strategic technologies in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the UC Davis School of Medicine, has been selected Innovator of the Year for the development of Microscopy with Ultraviolet Surface Excitation, or MUSE -- a technology that obtains high-resolution images of biological tissue specimens without first requiring the time-consuming preparation of thin sections mounted on glass slides.

Review by UC Davis researchers informs new prostate cancer screening recommendations

May 9, 2018

An exhaustive review by UC Davis researchers of more than 60 studies is the basis for new national recommendations about prostate cancer screening. The review and the findings were published May 8 in JAMA.

UC Davis Health among California institutions launching landmark precision medicine research study

May 1, 2018

The All of Us Research Program officially opens for enrollment Sunday, May 6. Led by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), All of Us is an unprecedented effort to gather genetic, biological, environmental, health and lifestyle data from 1 million or more volunteer participants living in the U.S. A major component of the federal Precision Medicine Initiative, the program’s ultimate goal is to accelerate research and improve health.

High-efficiency filters reduce indoor air pollution but not asthma symptoms

May 1, 2018

A new study focused on households with asthmatic children finds that the use of high-efficiency filtration, either as part of a central air system or standalone air cleaner, improves indoor air quality. The study also found that while participants did not report reduced asthma symptoms, they did have fewer visits to doctor’s offices and hospitals for asthma care.

April 2018

UC Davis researchers discover how antiepileptic drugs induce birth defects

April 30, 2018

A common drug for treating epileptic seizures can lead to birth defects if used during pregnancy by interfering with glutamate signaling in earliest stages of nervous system development, a study by UC Davis School of Medicine researchers has found.

Sleep disturbances, genetic alterations and Prader-Willi syndrome

April 24, 2018

Research byJanine LaSalle, professor in the Department  of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, the UC Davis Genome Center and MIND Institute, was published today in Nature Communications. LaSalle describes her work and the importance of the research below: 

Study of firearm deaths over 16-year period in California finds shift in firearm homicides and suicides

April 23, 2018

A study of firearm deaths in California from 2000-2015 by the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program (VPRP) has found that firearm homicides were largely an urban problem at the start of the study period, however, falling rates in urban counties resulted in more rural areas in the central part of the state having the highest rates of firearm homicide by 2015. It also found firearm suicides in California increased slightly since the mid-2000s, were three times higher in rural counties and were highest among whites.

Immune system and gastrointestinal deregulation linked with autism

April 17, 2018

Researchers at the UC Davis MIND Institute have found that children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have reduced immune system regulation, as well as shifts in their gut microbiota. The immune deregulation appears to facilitate increased inflammation and may be linked to the gastrointestinal issues so often experienced by children with ASD. The research was published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity

Study does not find change in firearm homicide or suicide rates through 2008 after repeal of comprehensive background check laws in two states

April 4, 2018

A study of firearm homicide and suicide rates in the 10 years after two states repealed their comprehensive background check laws in 1998 found no change in the rates of either cause of death from firearms through 2008. The repeals eliminated background check requirements for private-party transfers, but not for firearm transfers from licensed dealers.

March 2018

Amygdala neurons increase as children become adults - except in autism

March 20, 2018

In a striking new finding, researchers at the UC Davis MIND Institute found that typically-developing children gain more neurons in a region of the brain that governs social and emotional behavior, the amygdala, as they become adults. This phenomenon does not happen in people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Instead, children with ASD have too many neurons early on and then appear to lose those neurons as they become adults. The findings were published today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Spanish questionnaire expected to reduce disparities in speech treatment for cleft-palate patients

March 15, 2018

The Spanish version of a questionnaire used to assess the speech and quality-of- life of children and young adults following cleft-palate surgery has been developed by craniofacial disorder specialists at UC Davis Health and the University of Utah.

Acute myeloid leukemia patients have reduced early mortality at NCI-designated cancer centers

March 8, 2018

Researchers at UC Davis have shown that patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) who received their care at a National Cancer Institute (NCI) cancer center in California had a dramatically reduced risk of early mortality. Using data from the California Cancer Registry and the Patient Discharge Dataset, the team determined that the risk was reduced by 53 percent. These findings were reported in February in the journal Cancer.

UC Davis researchers find new way to defeat HIV latency

March 7, 2018

Researchers at UC Davis Health, together with colleagues at UC San Francisco and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, have found a mechanism for making HIV come out of hiding and become susceptible to anti-HIV drugs. Their study is now published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation.

New molecular target could help ease asthma

March 6, 2018

Researchers at UC Davis Health and Albany Medical College have shown that the protein vascular endothelial growth factor A — or VEGFA — plays a major role in the inflammation and airway obstruction associated with asthma. The finding may eventually lead to new asthma treatments targeting VEGFA.

February 2018

A small pay increase can have big health benefits for lower-wage workers

February 28, 2018

Lower-wage workers who receive a $1 raise call in sick less and consider themselves healthier than those who do not, new UC Davis research on minimum-wage policies shows.

UC Davis School of Medicine research funding ranks among the top 26 institutions in the U.S.

February 16, 2018

For the first time, UC Davis School of Medicine has ranked in the top 20 percent of institutions in the country for research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  

New study to evaluate the potential links between ozone and COPD

February 14, 2018

Angela Haczku, a leading researcher on environmental causes for airway inflammation, will receive more than $900,000 from the Tobacco Related-Disease Research Program to study chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and ozone, a toxic component of urban smog.

Young cancer survivors' risk of heart disease related to race and socioeconomic factors

February 9, 2018

Adolescent and young adult cancer survivors who are African American, poor or have public or no health insurance are far more likely to suffer from coronary artery disease, heart failure or stroke later in life than non-Hispanic white cancer survivors.

Traveling hands-on exhibit visits UC Davis Medical Center, Feb. 6 and 9

February 6, 2018

UC Davis Health is hosting the National Institutes of Health’s All of Us Journey, a traveling, hands-on exhibit to raise awareness about precision medicine and the All of Us research program.

Northern Californians asked to complete fire impacts survey

February 5, 2018

UC Davis public health researchers are conducting a comprehensive assessment of the health effects of the Northern California fires in October 2017. They are asking one person per household in Napa, Sonoma and other counties affected by the fires to answer an online questionnaire — called the UC Davis Northern California Fire and Health Impacts Survey — about their daily lives, property and health before the fires occurred and immediately afterward, along with their current situations.

New research suggests your own immune system can protect against MRSA infections

February 5, 2018

After years of investigation, researchers at UC Davis, Johns Hopkins, and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases have discovered how the immune system might protect a person from recurrent bacterial skin infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus (staph). The findings, publishing online this week in The Journal of Clinical Investigation, open new doors to someday developing vaccines to prevent staph skin infections, which account for 14 million outpatient visits, nearly 500,000 hospital admissions and $3 billion to $4 billion in inpatient health care costs in the U.S. per year.

January 2018

National study finds substantial unmet needs for mental health care among veterans of recent wars

January 31, 2018

A new congressionally mandated report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released today has concluded that there is a substantial unmet need for mental health services among veterans of the recent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. 

Talamantes honored as an Emerging Scholar

January 25, 2018

Efrain Talamantes, an assistant professor of internal medicine and an expert in advancing equity and diversity in the field of medicine, has been named an Emerging Scholar for 2018 by the publication Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.

Researchers say medical licensing test should include more prescription drug safety, misuse questions

January 24, 2018

Research led by experts from the UC Davis schools of medicine and nursing has identified gaps in pain-related education for health care providers that leave out important aspects of safe and effective pain management competencies, including those specific to opioid safety. These findings, said the researchers, may help explain one reason for the current public health crisis of inappropriate pain management and prescription drug abuse.

Testing Sonoma ash and air for fire-formed pollutants

January 23, 2018

When fires ripped through suburban subdivisions in Santa Rosa last October, they may have done more than reduce homes to ashes. By incinerating all kinds of materials — insulation, electronics, furniture, cleaning products, pesticides — at very high temperatures, they could have created unknown or previously unrecognized health hazards in the smoke and ash. Researchers from the University of California, Davis, are trying to figure out just what is in that ash and air.

UC Davis researcher urges caution on engineered stem cells

January 3, 2018

In a commentary published today in the New England Journal of Medicine, UC Davis researcher William Murphy expressed cautious optimism about efforts to genetically engineer hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) to temporarily resist cell death during transplantation. While these gene therapy approaches could dramatically improve patient outcomes, Murphy argues that their risks must be carefully studied in diverse animal models.

December 2017

Ophthalmologists increasingly dissatisfied with electronic health records

December 28, 2017

Ophthalmologists’ use of electronic health records (EHR) systems for storing and accessing patients’ medical histories more than doubled between 2006 and 2016, while their perceptions of financial and clinical productivity following EHR implementation declined, a study published today in JAMA Ophthalmology shows.

New grant funds study of immune cell activity in stem cell transplantation

December 21, 2017

A team of UC Davis investigators has been awarded a $1.2 million grant to examine a common virus and its effects on immune system function after stem cell transplantation.

Enhanced natural killer cells attack solid tumors

December 19, 2017

Human and veterinary researchers at UC Davis and other institutions have shown that enhanced natural killer (NK) immune cells, combined with radiation therapy, can be effective against spontaneous osteosarcoma (bone cancer) in dogs. The research showed these NK cells homed in on cancer and reduced metastasis in the treated dogs, offering a potential immunotherapy against solid tumors. The study was published today in the Journal for Immunotherapy of Cancer

Impact of medical marijuana laws on teen substance use differs by grade

December 14, 2017

A study assessing the impact of medical marijuana laws (MML) on adolescent substance use  has found decreased use of all substances among 8th graders, no change among 10th graders and increased non-medical use of prescription opioids and cigarette use among 12th graders, following MML enactment.

More new moms need recommended postpartum care

December 14, 2017

About half of new moms in California, including those with diabetes, do not receive critical follow-up care within three months after giving birth, a new study published in the December issue of the journal Contraception shows.

Microscope that uses ultraviolet instead of visible light emerging as powerful diagnostic tool

December 4, 2017

A microscope using ultraviolet light to illuminate samples enables pathologists to assess high-resolution images of biopsies and other fresh tissue samples for disease within minutes, without requiring the time-consuming preparation of conventional slides or destroying the tissue.

November 2017

Statewide survey finds physicians, pharmacists comply with prescription drug monitoring registration. Next step: increase use

November 29, 2017

A state law that funded upgrades to California’s prescription drug monitoring program and mandated physicians, pharmacists and controlled substance prescribers to register by July 2016 significantly increased registration rates, a new survey of 1,904 California physicians and pharmacists conducted by the UC Davis Violence Prevention Program has found.

Denying patient requests lowers physician ratings

November 27, 2017

Patients who ask for specialist referrals, laboratory tests or certain medications and don’t get them tend to be less satisfied with their doctors than those whose requests are fulfilled, new research from UC Davis Health shows. Based on the results, the study authors recommend communications training for physicians that fosters positive experiences for patients without agreeing to all requests for particular diagnostics or treatments.

Study shows long-term benefits of steroid hormone medications in Duchenne muscular dystrophy

November 27, 2017

A large, multi-center, international study to assess the long-term benefits of glucocorticoid treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) concludes that it does preserve muscle strength and function as well as reduce the risk of death for patients.

UC study finds performance on med school interviews linked to demographics

November 21, 2017

The medical school interview – a key determinant in the admissions process and, ultimately, in the physician workforce – appears to skew for or against applicants depending on their age, gender and self-identified disadvantaged socioeconomic status.

Maternal immune response affects genes in microglia, neural development

November 20, 2017

UC Davis MIND Institute esearchers have shown in a mouse model that an elevated maternal immune response changes the epigenetic landscape in offspring’s microglia, immune cells found in the brain and spinal cord. These changes affect genes associated with immune signaling and neural development, some of which have been implicated in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The study was published online in the journal Glia.

In cancer, talking about bad news can be good

November 17, 2017

Giving bad news is never easy, especially when it’s life or death. But when an oncologist delivers a poor prognosis to a cancer patient, does it harm their relationship?  Some research studies have suggested it can.

Unlocking the genetics of cancer

November 7, 2017

For many, breast cancer is more than just a disease – it’s personal. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lives. But through new discoveries at the genetic level, the personal nature of cancer will eventually be what helps to beat it.

October 2017

Peers can reduce tobacco use among younger smokers

October 25, 2017

Participating in a brief intervention delivered by their peers in community settings can help reduce smoking among youth and young adults, a new study from a team of tobacco-cessation researchers shows.

MIND Institute researchers detect reversal of behavioral deficits in a rare genetic disorder

October 23, 2017

Research conducted in mice at the UC Davis MIND Institute suggests that a drug treatment can reverse cognitive deficits and social abnormalities in a rare genetic disorder, 16p11.2 deletion syndrome, which includes symptoms of intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder, among others. Results of parallel studies conducted at the MIND and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Picower Institute for Learning and Memory appear in the latest issue of the journal Neuropsychopharmacology.

Moonshot grant advances immune therapy for dogs - and one day people - with cancer

October 20, 2017

UC Davis has received its first National Cancer Institute (NCI) Moonshot grant  ̶  $2.5 million over five years  ̶  to explore immunotherapy treatments for dogs who develop melanoma and osteosarcoma and that may one day benefit humans, as well.

Cancer Center hosts lung cancer research conference

October 19, 2017

Members of the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center lung cancer treatment team will present at WCLC 2017, a one-day conference on Saturday, Nov. 11, from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. in San Francisco. Presenters will share the latest lung cancer and other thoracic malignancy advances highlighted at the recent 18th Annual World Conference on Lung Cancer in Japan.

Noncompliance thwarts comprehensive background check policy for private-party sales, study finds

October 9, 2017

Of the three states that recently expanded comprehensive background check (CBC) policies to include all gun transfers, including those among private parties, only Delaware showed an overall increase in firearm background checks. Washington and Colorado had no changes, which the study authors say suggests that compliance and enforcement were incomplete.

"Smart" immune cells: Emerging cancer therapy research at UC Davis receives a boost with NIH award

October 6, 2017

Assistant Professor Sean Collins, Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, has received a $1.5 million award from the National Institutes of Health to advance the development of “smart” immune cells for therapies to treat cancer and other diseases. The five-year NIH Director’s New Innovator Award aims to provide new insight into how to engineer immune cells to control their recruitment and response to tumors.

September 2017

UC Davis receives $8 million to expand access to stem cell clinical trials

September 28, 2017

The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine today awarded a nearly $8 million grant to University of California, Davis, stem cell researchers to launch a special clinical trials program in Sacramento to accelerate the therapeutic development and delivery of stem cell therapies in human patients.

$3.3 million grant funds early detection of pancreatic cancer

September 27, 2017

UC Davis researchers, led by Julie Sutcliffe, have received a $3.3 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to advance efforts to diagnose pancreatic cancer before it spreads.

Too little is known about the compounds in wildfire smoke

September 25, 2017

How do fire-suppression chemicals and pesticides affect wildfire smoke and the health of those who breathe it? UC Davis graduate students discovered that this question cannot be answered based on current scientific evidence and, in a review published in Current Topics in Toxicology, they recommend more studies on the compounds in wildfire smoke.

UC Davis MIND Institute wins coveted ACE grant

September 7, 2017

The UC Davis MIND Institute has been awarded a 5-year, $12 million Autism Centers of Excellence (ACE) grant, one of five in the nation, to create a “Center for the Development of Phenotype-based Treatments of Autism Spectrum Disorder.”