Perelman School of Medicine

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Media Contact:Karen Kreeger | karen.kreeger@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-5658July 29, 2010

Calcium Connections: Penn Researchers Discover Basic Pathway for Maintaining Cell’s Fuel Stores

University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine researchers have described a previously unknown biological mechanism in cells that prevents them from cannibalizing themselves for fuel. The mechanism involves the fuel used by cells under normal conditions and relies on an ongoing transfer of calcium between two cell components via an ion channel. Without this transfer, cells start consuming themselves as a way of to get enough energy.

Patients, Hospitals Wrestle Over Tumor Tissue

July 29, 2010

Arthur Caplan, George Coukos and Michael Feldman of the School of Medicine discuss issues surrounding the use of live cells for research.

Article Source: Philadelphia Inquirer

"Seek, Test, Treat and Retain" to Stem HIV Among Drug Users

July 28, 2010

Charles O'Brien of the School of Medicine discusses the benefit of HIV treatment among drug users.

Article Source: Reuters

Personalized Gene Tests Are Bogus? Of Course They Are

July 23, 2010

Arthur Caplan of the School of Medicine authors a piece on genetic testing.

Article Source: MSNBC

Entuziasm şi Temeri la Crearea Celulei Synthia

July 23, 2010

Arthur Caplan of the School of Medicine debates synthetic life’s societal implications.

Article Source: Ziarul Lumina (Romania)

Kidney Disease Is Parasite-Slaying Protein's Downside

July 16, 2010

Sarah Tishkoff of the School of Medicine and the School of Arts and Sciences discusses “Jekyll-and-Hyde genetic variations."

Article Source: Science

Mirror, Mirror: Putting More Protection in Sunscreen

July 21, 2010

William James of the School of Medicine discusses sunscreen’s effectiveness.

Article Source: Philadelphia Inquirer

Taking an Alternative Path in Fighting the Disease

July 16, 2010

John Trojanowski and Virginia Lee of the School of Medicine are cited for their innovative Alzheimer’s research.

Article Source: New York Times

Sleep? Too Busy in Bed

July 16, 2010

James Findley and Philip Gerhman of the School of Medicine and Penn Sleep Center say the brain associates one’s bed with sleep.

Article Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
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Media Contact: | | July 19, 2010

Penn Researchers Discover New Role for Master Regulator in Cell Metabolism, Response to Stress

AMP-activated protein kinase, or AMPK, is a master regulator protein of metabolism that is conserved from yeast to humans. When a cell is low on fuel, AMPK shuts down processes that use energy and turns on processes that produce energy.

Biologists have been studying how AMPK works for several decades and know that once it is activated, AMPK turns on a large number of genes by passing the "make more energy" message through numerous signaling cascades in the cell. What was not known, until now, was that AMPK also works via an epigenetic mechanism to slow down or stop cell growth.