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  • 100-year-old trans fat pioneer celebrates news of an FDA ban

    A Minute With™... Fred Kummerow, trans fat expert

  • Genome-editing proteins seek and find with a slide and a hop

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Searching a whole genome for one particular sequence is like trying to fish a specific piece from the box of a billion-piece puzzle. Using advanced imaging techniques, University of Illinois researchers have observed how one set of genome-editing proteins finds its specific targets, which could help them design better gene therapies to treat disease.

  • New anti-microbial compounds evade resistance with less toxicity

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — New compounds that specifically attack fungal infections without attacking human cells could transform treatment for such infections and point the way to targeted medicines that evade antibiotic resistance.

  • Omega-3 fatty acids enhance cognitive flexibility in at-risk older adults

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — A study of older adults at risk of late-onset Alzheimer’s disease found that those who consumed more omega-3 fatty acids did better than their peers on tests of cognitive flexibility – the ability to efficiently switch between tasks – and had a bigger anterior cingulate cortex, a brain region known to contribute to cognitive flexibility.

  • New mobile app expands the outreach of SAWBO videos

    Whether the need is to educate people in West Africa about preventing Ebola or to train farmers in Latin America on preventing postharvest loss, Scientific Animations without Borders has an app – and an animated video – for that.

  • Tiny silicone spheres come out of the mist

    Technology in common household humidifiers could enable the next wave of high-tech medical imaging and targeted medicine, thanks to a new method for making tiny silicone microspheres developed by chemists at the University of Illinois.

  • Health issues in Africa to be focus of conference

    Infectious disease expert Mosoka P. Fallah, one of five “Ebola fighters” honored as a  Person of the Year by Time in 2014, will be among the speakers at an upcoming symposium at the University of Illinois. “Health in Africa and the Post-2015 Millennium Development Agenda,” May 20-22, will explore the health threats and opportunities facing sub-Saharan Africa.

  • Report: Brain-injured patients need therapies based on cognitive neuroscience

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Patients with traumatic brain injuries are not benefiting from recent advances in cognitive neuroscience research – and they should be, scientists report in a special issue of Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences.

  • Gene mapping reveals soy's dynamic, differing roles in breast cancer

    Scientists have mapped the human genes triggered by the phytonutrients in soy, revealing the complex role the legume plays in both preventing and advancing breast cancer.

  • BPA exposure in pregnant mice affects fertility in three generations

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - When scientists exposed pregnant mice to levels of bisphenol A equivalent to those considered safe in humans, three generations of female mouse offspring experienced significant reproductive problems, including declines in fertility, sexual maturity and pregnancy success, the scientists report in the journal Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology.

  • New technique paints tissue samples with light

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - One infrared scan can give pathologists a window into the structures and molecules inside tissues and cells, enabling fast and broad diagnostic assessments, thanks to an imaging technique developed by University of Illinois researchers and clinical partners.

  • Cancer drug first tested in pet dogs begins human trials

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new drug that prompts cancer cells to self-destruct while sparing healthy cells is now entering phase I clinical trials in humans. The drug, called PAC-1, first showed promise in the treatment of pet dogs with spontaneously occurring cancers, and is still in clinical trials in dogs with osteosarcoma.

  • How big data and engineering will change global health care

    We are right now in the early stages of a revolutionary shift from a medical education and delivery model still rooted in the 19th century to one that will fully integrate the rapid advances of technology with human health improvement.

  • $2 million Mellon grant to fund three new humanities research groups

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities has been awarded a $2,050,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to create research groups in three emerging areas in the humanities.

  • Smokers, the obese, have markedly higher health care costs than peers

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new study finds that smokers and the obese ring up substantially higher annual health care costs than their nonsmoking, non-obese peers. The added costs are highest among women, non-Hispanic whites and older adults, the study reports.

  • Getting into your head: Gelatin nanoparticles could deliver drugs to the brain

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Stroke victims could have more time to seek treatment that could reduce harmful effects on the brain, thanks to tiny blobs of gelatin that could deliver the medication to the brain noninvasively.

  • Women with serious mental illness less likely to receive cancer screenings

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Women with symptoms of serious mental illness are significantly less likely to receive three routine cancer screenings - Pap tests, mammograms and clinical breast exams - than women in the general population, despite being at elevated risk for medical comorbidities and early death, a new study indicates.

  • Teens who mature early at greater risk of depression, study says

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Youth who enter puberty ahead of their peers are at heightened risk of depression, although the disease develops differently in girls than in boys, a new study suggests.

  • Social support critical to women's weight-loss efforts, study finds

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Being accountable to another person and receiving social support may be vital in motivating some women to lose weight and keep it off, a new study says.

  • Study: Many in U.S. have poor nutrition, with the disabled doing worst

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new study finds that most U.S. adults fail to meet recommended daily levels of 10 key nutrients, and those with disabilities have even worse nutrition than average.

  • Watching 3-D videos of trees helps people recover from stress, researchers say

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Writers, outdoor enthusiasts and leaf-peeping tourists have known for centuries that nature has restorative powers that reduce feelings of stress and promote a sense of tranquility.

  • Health lessons provided by interactive media easier for youth to swallow

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Lecturing teens to eat their vegetables and get more exercise may not motivate them to adopt healthier habits, as many parents know. But will members of the "Facebook generation" learn to eat their broccoli and take more walks if the messages come from electronic games and peers in videos instead?

  • Gender, social orientation affect children's reactions to bullying

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new study of nearly 600 third-graders may explain why some children who experience peer victimization develop problems with depression or aggression while other children who also get bullied have healthy emotional and social adjustment.

  • Banked blood grows stiffer with age, study finds

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - It may look like fresh blood and flow like fresh blood, but the longer blood is stored, the less it can carry oxygen into the tiny microcapillaries of the body, says a new study from University of Illinois researchers.

  • Solving food insecurity problems among older Americans

    A Minute With™... Craig Gundersen, the University of Illinois Soybean Industry Endowed Professor of Agricultural Strategy

  • Labeling genetically engineered food

    A Minute With™... Bruce M. Chassy, a professor emeritus of food science and human nutrition

  • GaitTrack app makes cellphone a medical monitor for heart and lung patients

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - By simply carrying around their cellphones, patients who suffer from chronic disease could soon have an accurate health monitor that warns their doctors when their symptoms worsen.

  • Study recalculates cost of combination vaccines

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - One of the most popular vaccine brands for children may not be the most cost-effective choice. And doctors may be overlooking some cost factors when choosing vaccines, driving the market toward what is actually a more expensive option, according to a new study by University of Illinois researchers.

  • Off the shelf, on the skin: Stick-on electronic patches for health monitoring

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Wearing a fitness tracker on your wrist or clipped to your belt is so 2013. Engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Northwestern University have demonstrated thin, soft stick-on patches that stretch and move with the skin and incorporate commercial, off-the-shelf chip-based electronics for sophisticated wireless health monitoring.

  • Autism signs can be identified earlier than formerly thought, study suggests

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Many characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorders can be identified by the age of 2 and are predictive of which children will be diagnosed with these disorders when they're older, a new study suggests.

  • One gene influences recovery from traumatic brain injury

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Researchers report that one tiny variation in the sequence of a gene may cause some people to be more impaired by traumatic brain injury (TBI) than others with comparable wounds.

  • 'Bad cholesterol' indicates an amino acid deficiency, researcher says

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Low-density lipoprotein (LDL), the "bad cholesterol" that doctors consider a sign of potential heart disease, is merely a marker of a diet lacking all of the essential amino acids, says University of Illinois comparative biosciences professor Fred Kummerow, 99, a longtime opponent of the medical establishment's war on cholesterol.

  • Study looks at what older people think causes hypertension

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Older adults with hypertension may have dramatically different perceptions about the cause of their condition depending upon where they live, their ethnicity and other demographic characteristics, suggests new research that involved older adults in Arizona and Illinois.

  • New evidence shows increase in obesity may be slowing, but not by much

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In his 2014 State of the Union address, President Barack Obama referred to an August 2013 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study that showed a decline in the obesity rate among low-income preschool children, saying, "Michelle's Let's Move! partnership with schools, businesses and local leaders has helped bring down childhood obesity rates for the first time in 30 years, and that's an achievement that will improve lives and reduce health care costs for decades to come."

  • Scientist, 98, challenges orthodoxy on causes of heart disease

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Twenty years ago, at the age of 78, Fred A. Kummerow retired from the University of Illinois. That didn't mean his research days were behind him, however. Now in a wheelchair most of the time, Kummerow still maintains a laboratory on campus where he and his colleagues chip away at the basic assumptions that guide most research into the causes of heart disease. (Watch a video about his life and work.)

  • Cancer drug tested in pet dogs is now bound for human trials

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Thanks to a new $2 million investment, a drug that spurs cancer cells to self-destruct while sparing healthy cells is on the road to human clinical trials. The compound, known as PAC-1, has so far proven safe and has promising anti-cancer effects in cell culture, in mouse models of cancer and in pet dogs with spontaneously occurring lymphomas and osteosarcomas.

  • Cancer and treatment side effect: Stronger mother-daughter ties

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A bout with cancer can be the catalyst for growth and healing in mother-daughter relationships, suggests a new study by a University of Illinois social work professor.

  • Team explores the effects of exercise on ulcerative colitis

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new study indicates that aerobic exercise can lessen - or worsen - the symptoms of inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis, depending on the circumstances under which the exercise is undertaken.

  • A 20-minute bout of yoga stimulates brain function immediately after

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Researchers report that a single, 20-minute session of Hatha yoga significantly improved participants' speed and accuracy on tests of working memory and inhibitory control, two measures of brain function associated with the ability to maintain focus and take in, retain and use new information. Participants performed significantly better immediately after the yoga practice than after moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise for the same amount of time.

  • Older adults benefit from home-based DVD exercise program

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. — Fitness DVDs are a multimillion-dollar business, and those targeting adults over the age of 55 are a major part of the market. With names like “Boomers on the Move,” “Stronger Seniors” and “Ageless Yoga,” the programs promise much, but few have ever been rigorously tested.

  • Most U.S. infant death rates not likely to fall enough to meet goal

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The infant mortality rate set forth as a national goal in the federal government's Healthy People 2020 initiative is likely to be attained by only one demographic group - highly educated white mothers, the authors of a new study say.

  • Lipid researcher, 98, reports on the causes of heart disease

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - A 98-year-old researcher argues that, contrary to decades of clinical assumptions and advice to patients, dietary cholesterol is good for your heart - unless that cholesterol is unnaturally oxidized (by frying foods in reused oil, eating lots of polyunsaturated fats or smoking).

  • The research is in: Physical activity enhances cognition

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Exercise doesn't only strengthen your heart and muscles - it also beefs up your brain. Dozens of studies now show that aerobic exercise can increase the size of critical brain structures and improve cognition in children and older adults.

  • Stem-cell approach shows promise for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Researchers have shown that transplanting stem cells derived from normal mouse blood vessels into the hearts of mice that model the pathology associated with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) prevents the decrease in heart function associated with DMD.

  • Family thought to play part in reducing stress for young Mexicans, study shows

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Family members may play a unique and influential role in buffering Mexican youth against the negative effects of stress as they transition into adulthood, suggests a new study by an interdisciplinary group of researchers at universities in Mexico and the U.S.

  • New compound overcomes drug-resistant Staph infection in mice

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Researchers have discovered a new compound that restores the health of mice infected with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), an otherwise dangerous bacterial infection. The new compound targets an enzyme not found in human cells but which is essential to bacterial survival.

  • Strength training improves vascular function in young black men

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - Six weeks of weight training can significantly improve blood markers of cardiovascular health in young African-American men, researchers report in the Journal of Human Hypertension.

  • Study: Curbing car travel could be as effective as cutting calories

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Those considering how to maintain a healthy weight during holiday festivities, or looking ahead to New Year's resolutions, may want to think twice before reaching for traditional staples like cookies or candy - or the car keys.

  • Agricultural, health education goes global via cellphone animations

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - They're watching them in Benin, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, India and Niger. They're learning how to stop the spread of dengue, malaria, tuberculosis, cholera and food-related illness. They're learning how to protect their crops from insect damage or post-harvest losses. And they're coming up with new ideas for similar lessons to share with their neighbors or others around the world.

  • Scientists target bacterial sharing of antibiotic-resistance genes

    CHAMPAIGN, lll. - The bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae - which can cause pneumonia, meningitis, bacteremia and sepsis - likes to share its antibiotic-defeating weaponry with its neighbors. Individual cells can pass resistance genes to one another through a process called horizontal gene transfer, or by "transformation," the uptake of DNA from the environment.