Research

Protection Without a Vaccine

March 9, 2015

Philip Johnson and James Wilson of the Perelman School of Me

Article Source: New York Times
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Media Contact:Katherine Unger Baillie | kbaillie@upenn.edu | 215-898-9194March 9, 2015

Penn Researchers Show How Rivers Creep and Flow to Shape Landscapes Over Time

blurb: 
Most models predict that rivers only transport sediment during conditions of high flow and, moreover, that only particles on the surface of the river bed move due to the force of the flowing water above. But using a custom laboratory apparatus, a new study by University of Pennsylvania researchers shows that, even when a river is calm, sediment on and beneath the river bed slowly creeps forward.

By Madeleine Stone  @themadstone

Rivers drive the evolution of Earth’s surface by eroding and depositing sediment.

But for nearly a century, geologists have puzzled over why theoretical models, which use principles of physics to predict patterns of sediment transport in rivers, have rarely matched observations from nature.

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Media Contact:Anna Duerr | anna.duerr@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-8369March 4, 2015

Twitter Chatter Predicts Health Insurance Marketplace Enrollment, Penn Study Shows

An increase in Twitter sentiment (the positivity or negativity of tweets) is associated with an increase in state-level enrollment in the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) health insurance marketplaces — a phenomenon that points to use of the social media platform as a real-time gauge of public opinion and provides a way for marketplaces to quickly identify enrollment changes and emerging issues.

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Media Contact:Lee-Ann Donegan | leeann.donegan@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-5660March 3, 2015

Prescription Drug-Induced Liver Failure is Uncommon; Over-the-Counter Medications and Dietary/Herbal Supplements are Most Common Causes, Penn Study Finds

Drug-induced acute liver failure is uncommon, and over-the-counter medications and dietary and herbal supplements -- not prescription drugs -- are its most common causes, according to new research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. The findings are published in the current issue of Gastroenterology.

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Media Contact:Karen Kreeger | Karen.kreeger@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-5658March 4, 2015

Penn Medicine: Gorilla Origins of the Last Two AIDS Virus Lineages Confirmed

Two of the four known groups of human AIDS viruses (HIV-1 groups O and P) have originated in western lowland gorillas, according to an international team of scientists from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Montpellier, the University of Edinburgh, and others.

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Media Contact:Lee-Ann Donegan | leeann.donegan@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-5660March 2, 2015

Successful Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Youth Leads to Decreased Thinking about Suicide, Penn Medicine Study Finds

Penn Medicine researchers found that patients who did not respond to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety in childhood had more chronic and enduring patterns of suicidal ideation at 7 to 19 years after treatment. This study adds to the literature that suggests that successful CBT for childhood anxiety confers long-term benefits. The complete study is available in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.

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Media Contact:Katherine Unger Baillie | kbaillie@upenn.edu | 215-898-9194March 4, 2015

Penn Scientists Describe the Function of an Enzyme Critical to Male Fertility

blurb: 
In a study published in the journal Genes and Development, University of Pennsylvania researchers have filled in details of how an enzyme, through interactions with a network of nearly two dozen other genes, protects the integrity of the germ line by giving rise to a class of RNA molecules that are essential to sperm development.

Researchers are one step closer to unraveling the extraordinarily complex series of processes that lead to an event crucial to human reproduction: the creation of sperm.

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Media Contact:Amanda Mott | ammott@upenn.edu | 215-898-1422 February 26, 2015

Penn Trustees Approve Design for Pennovation Center at Pennovation Works Site

The design development for the new Pennovation Center has received approval from the University of Pennsylvania Board of Trustees. This 58,000-square-foot, three-story facility is located in the heart of the Pennovation Works, Penn’s 23-acre site along the southern bank of the Schuylkill River and adjacent to the University campus.

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Media Contact:Katherine Unger Baillie | kbaillie@upenn.edu | 215-898-9194February 25, 2015

Penn Vet Researchers Identify Effective Treatment for Niemann Pick Type C

blurb: 
A study coming out in Science Translational Medicine and led by University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine researchers has shown that cats with the rare disease Niemann Pick type C — which mirrors the human version of the disease — show vast improvements when treated with a compound called cyclodextrin.

Niemann Pick Disease type C, or NPC, is a disease most people have never heard of, affecting just one person in 150,000. Yet the disease is a devastating one. Frequently diagnosed in children in their elementary school years, sufferers usually die by the time they’re 20.

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Media Contact:Steve Graff | stephen.graff@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-5653February 23, 2015

Penn Medicine Physician Finds No Preventive Benefits for Widely Used Kidney Cancer Drugs

Two widely used targeted therapy drugs— approved by the FDA for use in metastatic kidney cancer —are no more effective than a placebo in preventing return of the disease to increase life spans of patients suffering from advanced kidney cancer after surgery, according to new results to be presented by a researcher at the U