Soluble Amyloid Precursor Protein Signals to Neural Stem Cells

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Amyloid precursor protein (APP) is best known as the protein that is cleaved to form the plaque-associated protein in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. The APP gene encodes multiple alternatively spliced mRNA forms. The form that encodes a protein of 695 amino acids (APP695) is expressed in neurons. The transcript that encodes a 770 amino … Read moreSoluble Amyloid Precursor Protein Signals to Neural Stem Cells

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Intratumor Immunotherapy Kills Injected and Distant Tumors

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Cancerous tumors must evade immune destruction to survive. They can achieve this by preventing the immune cells from gaining access to the tumor (“immune cold”) or by tipping the balance of immunoactivating and immunosuppressing signals toward immunosuppression. Immunosuppression means that, even if the immune cells penetrate the tumor, they cannot kill the cancer. The cytotoxicity … Read moreIntratumor Immunotherapy Kills Injected and Distant Tumors

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Challenges from Improvements in Cancer Screening

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The latest advances in detecting cancers through a blood test (a type of liquid biopsy) are exciting. After I read the blog posts by the NIH Director Francis Collins and by Derek Lowe, I started wondering where all this screening will lead. Whereas Collins emphasizes the encouraging aspects of the latest liquid biopsy results, Lowe … Read moreChallenges from Improvements in Cancer Screening

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Immunomodulators for Arthritis: Small-Molecule Disease-Modifying Agents

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Unlike osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease (1). The body’s own immune system attacks the joints, causing swelling, pain, heat, redness, immobility, and tissue damage that can cause deformation (Figure 1). Because rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, some types of immunomodulatory agents are specifically useful for treating this condition. Although both types of arthritis … Read moreImmunomodulators for Arthritis: Small-Molecule Disease-Modifying Agents

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Stem Cell Injections for Osteoarthritic Knees

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Some friends recently asked me about getting stem cell injections for painful knees with osteoarthritis (Figure 1). Should they push their doctors for this treatment? Were they, and consequently their stem cells, going to be too old if they waited? I started my investigation at PubMed, searching for “stem cells” and “osteoarthritis,” which produced 1249 … Read moreStem Cell Injections for Osteoarthritic Knees

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