Medicine

William Markesbery: A Legacy of Distinguished Work and Great Compassion (Spring 2010)

Bill Markesbery, tireless director of the UK Sanders-Brown Center on Aging for three decades, was a pioneer in the study of Alzheimer's disease and how to prevent it. His work will live on for generations to come.

Long Distance and Up Close (Spring 2010)

Sanders-Brown Center researcher Gregory Jicha led a pioneering study to determine if telemedicine can benefit patients in rural and remote areas of Kentucky. The answer: A resounding yes.

2009-2010 University Research Professors (Spring 2010)

Subba Reddy Palli: Big Discoveries from Tiny Creatures
Kevin Sarge: "Sumo" Wrestling with Alzheimer's Disease
Karin Westlund High: Progress in the War against Pain

New Gum Could Replace Toothpaste for Soldiers (Spring 2010)
Sanders-Brown Appoints New Director (Spring 2010)
Can Fat Mice Teach Us How Obesity Kills? (Summer 09)

What started as a landmark discovery in 1988—fat makes the precursor to a protein that drives up blood pressure—has led Lisa Cassis, who chairs the UK Graduate Center for Nutritional Sciences, to 25 years of research on the hormone-based renin-angiotensin system. Using fat mice, Cassis is learning how obesity kills and finding mechanisms to stop it.

Taking Good Care (Summer 09)

Based on the latest research about the brain’s ability to form new neural connections, UK’s Lumy Sawaki is helping patients regain the use of stroke-damaged hands, legs or arms. Her approach, which combines therapy with the latest technology, is central to the research program in physical medicine and rehabilitation at UK and Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital.

UK Attracts 33 New Cancer-Fighters (Summer 09)

 “Shining star” B. Mark Evers, an accomplished surgeon from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, and 32 new recruits are helping to shape the future of the UK Markey Cancer Center. Evers’ goal: achieve national cancer center designation and attract more top scientists to target Kentucky’s deadliest cancers: lung and colorectal cancer.

Hopping Probe to Study Nanostructures at the Surface of Live Cells (Summer 09)
Every Breath You Take (Winter 09)

UK surgeon Jay Zwischenberger is developing and refining an artificial lung apparatus as an effective lifeline for some of the 3,500 U.S. patients a year waiting for lung transplants.

Bringing Back the Brain (Winter 09)

Using new Leica confocal microscopes in UK’s Imaging Facility, pharmaceutical sciences researcher Kimberly Nixon is working to find out how brain mass recovers in alcoholics who stop drinking.

Toxic Turnaround (Winter 09)

Does good nutrition protect your blood vessels from the toxic impact of PCBs? Can nanoparticles and free radicals destroy PCBs? Yes and yes, say scientists in the UK Superfund Basic Research Program.

Smoke-Free Successes (Winter 09)

What effects has Lexington’s four-year-old smoke-free law had on community health, smoking rates and local businesses’ bottom line? Ellen Hahn in the UK College of Nursing discusses the results of several research projects that answered these questions.

Craig Rush: Paying Close Attention to ADHD (Winter 09)
Working to Stop Prostate Cancer Metastasis (Winter 09)
Can Nanoparticles Hurt Us? (Winter 09)
The Mystery of the Toxic Workplace (Summer 08)

A UK team of researchers working through the Morris K. Udall Parkinson’s Disease Research Center of Excellence establishes a link between trichloroethylene and Parkinson’s disease.

Fighting Cancer with a Safe Tan (Summer 08)

In a revolutionary approach to stop skin cancer, UK’s John D’Orazio is working on the basic science behind a lotion that naturally creates a tan and protects against UV damage.

2007-2008 University Research Professors (Summer 08)

Jayakrishna Ambati: Working to Cure Macular Degeneration
Richard Kryscio: Science by the Numbers

Fighting Relapsed Leukemia (Summer 08)

UK’s Dianna Howard found that the combination of a new drug, bortezomib, with a standard chemotherapy drug rapidly kills acute myeloid leukemia stem cells, the cells thought to be responsible for leukemia relapse.

Fasting can reduce brain injury impact (Summer 08)
Saliva helps diagnose heart attack (Summer 08)
Microneedles more efficient for drug delivery (Summer 08)
Mighty mouse fights cancer (Summer 08)
Lung cancer blood test licensed (Summer 08)
25th anniversary issue: Aging & Alzheimer's (Fall 07)
25th anniversary issue: Cancer (Fall 07)
25th anniversary issue: Diabetes & Nutrition (Fall 07)
25th anniversary issue: Drug Design & Delivery (Fall 07)
25th anniversary issue: Nanotechnology (Fall 07)
25th anniversary issue: Women's Health (Fall 07)
25th anniversary issue: Other Key Research (Fall 07)
Fighting Back: The Marty Driesler Cancer Project (Winter 07)

A first-of-its-kind health-care initiative to fight deadly cancers in Eastern Kentucky is focusing on early detection to cut the rates of lung and esophageal cancers. It’s a UK partnership with regional and local physicians and hospitals initiated by 5th District Congressman Hal Rogers.

Research Trifecta! (Winter 07)

An all-star team of cancer researchers at UK has conducted three landmark trials in the past 20 years, studies that have resulted in a new “standard of care” for patients with metastatic cancer.

Mosquito Birth Control (Fall 2006)

Entomology professor Stephen Dobson is working to prevent human filariasis, a globally important disease spread by mosquitos. Currently, 1.2 billion people are at risk of contracting this potentially deadly disease.

Daret St. Clair: A Heart for Cancer Research (Winter 07)

When a drug is powerful enough to kill cancerous cells, it often destroys healthy tissue in the process. St. Clair’s research will potentially provide a way to avert this complication—with the help of an enzyme called MnSOD. Her goal: protect the heart during cancer treatment.

Alan Daugherty: Genetically Modifying Serendipity (Winter 07)

Daugherty developed an animal model of aortic abdominal aneurysm (AAA), a disease that predominantly affects males over 55. For reasons that are still unknown, AAA begins with a bulge in the aorta; the bulge eventually ruptures, causing massive internal bleeding.

Meditate on This New Finding: Meditation is More Effective than a Power Nap (Winter 07)
UK Researcher Pinpoints Chronic Wasting Disease Transmission (Winter 07)
Good Dental News for Expectant Mothers (Winter 07)

A recent clinical trial concluded that while treatment for periodontal disease is safe for pregnant women, it does not reduce the risk for pre-term delivery, low birthweight, smaller fetal growth, or serious levels of hypertension.

Reshaping Women's Health Research (Summer 06)

UK is shaping the future of women’s health by starting at home. The Center for the Advancement of Women’s Health is leading a statewide push, through the Kentucky Women’s Health Registry unveiled last March, to collect information to track health trends and recruit women to participate in medical trials. The Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health (BIRCWH) program and the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) in Women’s Health are training and supporting the next generation of scientists. And the Center for Research on Violence Against Women is working to improve women’s safety and access to help after victimization.

Enlisting Blackberries in the Fight against Cancer (Summer 06)

UK’s Russell Mumper is working with a local blackberry producer to find out if blackberry extract can be used to fight cancer. It’s a Kentucky-grown partnership that may lead to new discoveries about the disease-fighting properties of the blackberry.

Osteoporosis Drug Can Prevent Breast Cancer (Summer 06)
A Very Personal Bacterial Battle: C. Diff Killed UK Physician’s Stepfather (Summer 06)
UK’s Ambati Announces Two Important Findings about Macular Degeneration (Summer 06)
New Pharmaceutical Facility Opens at Coldstream (Summer 06)
Breast Cancer Breakthrough (Fall 05)

The results of a massive, five-year breast-cancer trial focused on a drug called Herceptin are in, and the news is good for women with a particularly aggressive type of breast cancer—HER-2. UK's Edward Romond calls this "the single biggest advance in the treatment of breast cancer in decades."

Breathing Easier in the Bluegrass (Fall 05)

A professor in UK's College of Nursing has been prominent in the smoke-free debates in Central Kentucky. Read how restaurants and bars in Lexington—in the heart of tobacco country—became smoke-free in 2004.

Sylvia Daunert: Fabricating "Smart Pills" with Genetically Engineered Proteins (Fall 05)
Linda Dwoskin: Creating New Treatments for Nicotine and Methamphetamine Abuse (Fall 05)
Stephen Scheff: Working toward Better Head Trauma Treatment (Fall 05)
UK Continues Study of Blood Substitute for Trauma Patients (Fall 05)
Fighting Back against Fibromyalgia (Fall 05)
Research Team Earns Largest NIH Grant in College of Ag History (Fall 05)
The Joy of Soy (Fall 05)
Gill Institute Researcher Wins Prestigious Award (Fall 05)
Preventing Shingles (Fall 05)
UK's Newest College Off to a Healthy Start (Fall 05)
Research Supercomputing (Summer 05)
Primitive Powerhouses: Tapping into Blood-forming Stem Cells (Summer 2005)

In his 10 years at UK, Gary Van Zant has probed the bone marrow's stem cells, and his findings have implications ranging from the immediate (better cancer treatment) to the seemingly sci-fi (organ regeneration). But what makes Van Zant's research unique among scientists investigating stem cells is his angle: aging. He's asking: What is the link between cancer and stem-cell aging?

Remote-Control Surgery (Summer 2005)

The future is now for patients at UK who opt for robotic surgery. Guided by a surgeon at a console, the medical center's high-tech robot lends surgeons a sure hand in prostate, thoracic and pediatric surgery.

Room to Move: Top team of heart researchers comes to UK (Summer 2005)

New Senior Associate Dean for Clinical Research William Balke is bringing a team of up to 20 top heart researchers to UK. This is good news for Kentucky. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for Kentuckians.

A Big Fat Problem: America's Kids in the Middel of an Epidemic (Fall 2004)

Around 30 percent of children ages 6 to 11 in this country are overweight. Among adolescents, 30 percent are overweight and nearly 16 percent obese. University of Kentucky scientists and clinicians are more active than ever in fighting what the CDC is calling an "epidemic." From basic science to strength-training to long-term weight-loss programs, UK researchers are working to help our kids go from fat to fit.

Confronting Stroke (Fall 2004)

Researchers in the UK Stroke Program are taking part in a clinical trial of a drug based on a clot-busting compound in bat saliva, finding out if aspirin, Plavix and rigorous blood pressure control will prevent strokes more effectively than aspirin alone, and analyzing videotapes to see if targeted therapy can help stroke patients improve language skills.

UK's Largest College Has a New Dean: Jay Perman (Fall 2004)
Subbarao Bondada: Inhibiting Lymphoma Growth (Fall 2004)
Terry Lennie: Taking a Low-Sodium Diet to Heart (Summer 2004)

Lennie and colleague Debra Moser created the Rich Heart Program based on their cardiovascular nursing research.

Bruce O'Hara: Why Do We Need to Sleep? (Summer 2004)

O'Hara is studying sleep genes by measuring sleep in mice.

Sarah Jo Nixon: Top Drug Abuse Researcher Now at UK (Summer 2004)

Nixon is heading up a new multi-year project funded by NIDA on nicotine, neurocognition and substance abuse.

Chang-Guo Zhan: Using Computers to Battle Cocaine (Summer 2004)

Zhan is developing a new drug by tinkering with BChE, a well-known cocaine-metabolizing protein.

Why Do Our Brains Betray Us? (Spring 2004)

For over 30 years, UK researchers have been using science to battle Alzheimer's. And the fight has intensified. Current projects explore vitamin E and selenium, incipient Alzheimer's, enzymes A-beta and proteasome, DNA microarray technology, and memantine—the first FDA-approved medication to treat Alzheimer's.

Skin Patch Promised Land (Spring 2004)

Drug-delivery expert Audra Stinchcomb is developing a first-of-its-kind prescription patch, a safe and legal method to deliver marijuana-like chemicals to ease nausea and stimulate appetite in people with AIDS and cancer.

Clues to Organ Regeneration(Spring 2004)

Collaborative research at the University of Kentucky and the University of California-Irvine involving the genetic structure of salamanders might offer clues about regeneration of living tissue.

Good Cholesterol, Estrogen & Heart Disease (Spring 2004)

A UK study presents a new picture of the roles of estrogen, estradiol (a form of estrogen used in HRT) and good cholesterol (high-density lipoproteins, or HDL) in heart disease.

A Case of the "Baghdad Boil" (Spring 2004)

Sam Turco, a UK professor of biochemistry, has spent 20 years studying the unique characteristics of Leishmania, a rugged and potentially deadly parasite American soldiers are bringing home with them from Iraq.

Inner-space Invaders (Fall 2003)

Two UK researchers are creating nanoparticles loaded with cancer-killing drugs. The tiny spheres are further engineered to target and infiltrate specific diseased cells.

Mounting an Attack on a Furtive Form of Plaque(Fall 2003)

Rob Lodder unites fiber optics and mathematics in a probe that lets doctors do preemptive, on-site inspections of heart vessels.

A Grassroots Approach to Medical Care(Fall 2003)

The Kentucky Ambulatory Network partners primary-care physicians with university faculty to answer important health questions.

Untangling Alzheimer's Disease(Fall 2003)
Linda Dwoskin & Peter Crooks: Research Findings to Crow About (Summer 2003)

These Uk researchers are looking at lobeline in an effort to block the "highs" of drugs such as methamphetamine.

Boyd Haley: Tagging Toxins for Better Health (Summer 2003)

Haley's light-activated probes allow scientists to see biochemical differences between normal brain tissue and brain tissue from someone with suspected Alzheimer's.

Clinical Trials: A Human Safety Net for New Drugs & Treatments (Spring 2003)

UK researchers are fighting disease on new fronts through clinical trials focused on more effective treatment for lung cancer, macular degeneration, diabetes, hormone replacement therapy, asthma, and thyroid cancer.

Beware the Shapeshifter (Spring 2003)

Glenn Telling is trying to answer the question of whether deer and elk killer CWD, following mad cow's precedent, could spawn a disease that infects humans.

A Mouthful of Evidence (Spring 2003)

Two UK researchers seek to prove cause and effect between low-birthweight babies and expectant mothers with periodontal disease.

2002-2003 University Research Professors

Timothy McClintock: Making Sense of Smell

Countering Bioterror: UK Scientists Attack Infectious Diseases (Fall 2002)

Researchers at UK are testing a new smallpox vaccine for the military, making fundamental discoveries about the bacteria that cause plague, and finding better ways to protect animals, fruits and vegetables from microbes.

Regenerating Hope: Spinal Cord Research at UK (Fall 2002)

A team of researchers and clinicians in a wide range of disciplines is studying every aspect of spinal cord injury, work that one day may revolutionize the way physicians treat these injuries.

For Patients with New Heart Device the Beat Goes On (Spring 2002)

With the Chronicle IHM, the world's first implantable monitor for patients with heart failure, doctors can measure their patient's condition remotely.

Quicker Treatment for Heart Attack Victims (Spring 2002)

A new UK program is testing education and counseling intervention delivered by nurses to reduce the amount of time between the onset of symptoms and treatment for heart attack victims.

Living with Diabetes: UK Research Offers New Hope (Fall 2001)

Researchers at UK created Envision TD, a tiny, implantable plastic strip that slowly releases medication into the eye, to treat diabetic macular edema (DME). Forty percent of people in the United States diagnosed with diabetes will develop DME.

Using "Knock-Out" Mice to Fight Epilepsy (Fall 2001)

Graduate student Xuan Nguyen is using genetically modified mice with the gene prodynorphin removed. This work has potential applications in understanding and treating age-related cognitive decline and epilepsy.

2001-2002 Research Professor: Robert Perry (Fall 2001)

Robert Perry's work on plague—the infection that killed 25 million people in Medieval Europe—may lead to tomorrow's anti-bacterial and anti-tumor drugs.

Nun Study in National Spotlight (Fall 2001)

David Snowdon's book on his Alzheimer's study of 678 nuns received national press coverage.

Listening in on the Brain: New Technologies to Fight Neurological Disorders (Spring 2001)

Greg Gerhardt is designing sensors and microprobes to monitor chemical levels in the brain and deliver therapeutic drugs.

Targeting Women's Health (Spring 2001)

New UK Women's Health center and center for biomedical research in women's health

Freezing for the Future: Life-Saving Cryobiology (Spring 2001)

Dayong Gao is exploring fundamental principles for cryopreservation of stem cells, platelets and arteries.

Going for the GRID: Last-Chance Radiation Therapy Gives Patients New Hope (Fall 2000)

Mohammed Mohiuddin is using potent GRID therapy to shrink large tumors. GRID therapy involves 250 pencil-sized radiation beams.

Mama's Little Baby Loves Pork & Beans (Fall 2000)

Many Kentucky mothers are feeding their babies non-nutritious foods such as coffee and fried chicken, much too early.

Like Clockwork (Fall 2000)

Douglas McMahon studies the brain's internal clock.

Renewed Funding for UK's Sanders-Brown Center (Fall 2000)

The five-year, $7.5 million award from the National Institute on Aging will allow UK to remain among the leaders in Alzheimer's disease research and associated neurodegenerative disorders.

At the Crossroads of Chemistry and Biology (Spring 2000)

A new biological chemistry program and four new faculty researchers are using molecular technology to improve your health and the environment.

A Bad, Bad Bug (Spring 2000)

Graduate student Lisa Pedersen is studying the bacteria that causes Legionnaire's disease.

RX: A Simple, Common Bean (Spring 2000)

James Anderson studies the effects of soybeans on health.

Enlisting a Natural Enzyme in the Fight Against Cancer (Spring 2000)

By incorporating a natural body enzyme into existing cancer treatments, radiation and chemotherapy might be much less toxic for patients.

Creating Cancer Killers (Fall 1999)

John Yannelli and Craig Jordan are working on a new gene therapy that holds promise for leukemia patients.

Mercury No Culprit in Alzheimer's (Fall 1999)

A UK study finds mercury used in dental fillings does not appear to cause Alzheimer's disease.

Toxic Chicken (Fall 1999)

Carol Pickett has found that every fresh, whole chicken she tested was contaminated with a bacterium called Campylobacter jejuni.

UK's Injury Prevention and Research Center (Spring 1999)

The center's mission is to promote-through research, education and injury prevention programs-the health of Kentuckians by reducing injuries, disabilities, deaths and the associated medical costs.

Center on Aging Adds 20 New Research Labs (Spring 1999)

A new four-story, 34,000-square-foot addition to the UK Sanders-Brown Center on Aging provides greater opportunities for research into issues associated with aging.

Alzheimer's: Fighting Back (Fall 1998)

UK researchers working at the cell level to discover the pathways of the disease and how to prevent it.

The Brain Donation Project
A Last Leaving

Back on the Tractor (Fall 1998)

UK nurse studies how farm amputees overcome their injuries

Can Tamoxifen Prevent Breast Cancer? (Spring 1998)

The 13,389 women involved in this national study, including more than 150 women at UK, are at an extremely high risk of developing breast cancer.

UK Part of Nationwide Study to Explore Promising New Drug for Stroke (Fall 1998)

In a recent nationwide study, a promising new medicine called citicoline was found to protect the brain from catastrophic damage after a stroke.

illustration of skin

Melanocytes (dark blue cells) distribute pigment, a.k.a. melanin (tiny brown spheres), to the keratinocytes (peach cells). Keratinocytes make up 90 percent of skin cells, and as the keratinocytes are pushed up to the surface by new cells beneath them, the melanin gets more and more concentrated. John D’Orazio explains, “Skin rich in one type of melanin, called eumelanin, absorbs the UV light before it can get down to the danger zone—where the melanocytes live.” Skin cancer happens when UV light mutates cells in the danger zone.

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