MD Anderson Research Highlights: SITC 2022 Special Edition

This special edition features upcoming presentations by MD Anderson researchers at the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) 37th Annual Meeting, including immunotherapy advances in human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive head and neck cancers, microbiome signatures linked with specialized immune-cell clusters, and promising early activity from novel immunotherapy drugs in advanced melanoma and colorectal cancer.

Gut bacteria may contribute to susceptibility to HIV infection, UCLA-led research suggests

New UCLA-led research suggests certain gut bacteria — including one that is essential for a healthy gut microbiome – differ between people who go on to acquire HIV infection compared to those who have not become infected. The findings, published in the peer-reviewed journal eBioMedicine, suggest that the gut microbiome could contribute to one’s risk for HIV infection, said study lead Dr.

What if some stress actually protects your body?

Stress has been linked to all sorts of serious health issues, from insomnia to high blood pressure, obesity and even heart disease. But it’s generally acknowledged that some stress can also be helpful, like when someone’s chasing a work deadline. But what if some level of stress can actually protect the body? A new study by researchers at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, with findings published Sept. 26 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests the immune system may benefit from a measure of stress.

UCSF-Led Research Team Reveals Mechanisms at Work in Progression of Pancreatic Cysts to Cancer

A UC San Francisco-led team of international researchers has outlined the comprehensive immune landscape and microbiome of pancreatic cysts as they progress from benign cysts to pancreatic cancer. Their findings, publishing August 31 in Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology, could reveal the mechanism of neoplastic progression and provide targets for immunotherapy to inhibit progression or treat invasive disease.

Research links red meat intake, gut microbiome, and cardiovascular disease in older adults

A new study shows older adults who ate about a serving of meat daily had a 22 percent higher risk of cardiovascular disease than those who didn’t eat meat, and identifies biologic pathways that help explain the risk. Higher risk and links to gut bacteria were found for red meat, not poultry, eggs, or fish.

Mouse study links changes in microbiome to prenatal opioid exposure

Prenatal exposure to opioids had been linked to a range of adverse outcomes in infants, including poor fetal growth, low birthweight, possible congenital defects and a higher risk of admission to neonatal intensive care. Less information is known, however, on how developmental opioid exposure shapes an infant’s microbiome and how that influence, in turn, may trigger neurological or behavioral effects later in life.

Common Prebiotic Fiber Mitigates Harm of High-salt Diet in Rats

New research in rats finds a diet high in the fiber inulin offered a protective effect against the damage of a high-salt diet. The research will be presented this week at the American Physiological Society and American Society for Nephrology Control of Renal Function in Health and Disease conference

A New Approach Produces a 90-Fold Increase in Known Viral Taxa

Viruses play an essential role in regulating microbiomes. However, the use of metagenomics and metatranscriptomics have produced taxonomies of only a tiny proportion of the world’s viruses. In this study, researchers used a novel algorithm to compare and incorporate 715,672 metagenome viruses from environmental samples around the world. This expands the viral taxa available to researchers from about 8,000 to 723,672. The scientists then used the data to examine samples from two Populus tree genotypes.

Probiotic bacteria may enhance tamoxifen effectiveness in treatment of ER+ breast cancer

Probiotic bacteria may enhance anti-cancer activities of the breast cancer drug tamoxifen and other endocrine-targeted therapies, which could help reduce the risk of estrogen receptive positive (ER+) breast cancer, suggests a new study presented Monday at ENDO 2022, the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting in Atlanta, Ga.

Mount Sinai Microbiome Lab Joins NIH’s Accelerating Medicines Partnership

The National Institutes of the Health (NIH) has awarded researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai a four-year grant to study the role of the human microbiome in rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus, and other autoimmune diseases. The grant is part of the NIH’s Accelerating Medicines Partnership® Autoimmune and Immune-Mediated Diseases (AMP® AIM) program, which is designed to speed the discovery of new treatments and diagnostics. It will support the Microbiome Technology and Analytic Center Hub (Micro-TEACH), a multidisciplinary team of researchers at Icahn Mount Sinai and NYU Langone Health.

“Intestinal Microflora” as Health Indicator, A National-level Research Project by Chula Doctors in Response to Problems of an Aging Society

Chula’s Faculty of Medicine pioneers Thailand’s first research work that studies “Intestinal Microflora Microbiome of the Aged” which gathers basic information at the national level to unlock the relationship between the wellness of the aged and intestinal microflora that can predict risks of diseases and health and the population’s wellbeing.

Children’s dislike of cauliflower, broccoli could be written in their microbiome

Researchers reporting in ACS’ Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry have found that levels of volatile, sulfurous compounds are similar in parent-child pairs, suggesting shared oral microbiomes. They also found that high levels cause children to dislike the vegetables.

Climate Change Threatens Base of Polar Oceans’ Bountiful Food Webs

A study recently published in Nature Communications suggests that displacing cold-water communities of algae with warm-adapted ones threatens to destabilize the delicate marine food web. The team was led by University of East Anglia researchers and included DOE Joint Genome Institute researchers.

Mayo researchers link gut microbiome to rheumatoid arthritis prognosis

A significant indicator of whether a patient with rheumatoid arthritis will improve over the course of disease may lie in part in their gut, according to new research from Mayo Clinic’s Center for Individualized Medicine.

The study, published in Genome Medicine, found that predicting a patient’s future rheumatoid arthritis prognosis could be possible by zeroing in on the trillions of bacteria, viruses and fungi that inhabit their gastrointestinal tract, known as the gut microbiome. The findings suggest that gut microbes and a patient’s outcome of rheumatoid arthritis are connected.

Do a Mom’s Medications Affect Her Breast Milk and Baby? New Center Investigates

UC San Diego School of Medicine receives $6.1M to launch a new research center studying the effects of maternal antibiotic use on breast milk and infant health. The center is funded by National Institutes of Health, as part of their new Maternal and Pediatric Precision in Therapeutics (MPRINT) Hub.

Fungi That Live in the Gut Influence Health and Disease

Bacteria’s role in gut health has received a lot of attention in recent years. But new research publishing in Nature shows that fungi—another microorganism that lives within us—may be equally important in health and disease. Fungi thrive in the healthy gut, but when interactions with the immune system are off-balance, they cause intestinal damage that may contribute to gastrointestinal disease. Additional investigation demonstrate that vaccines could be developed as therapeutics to improve gut health.

Studying how microbiome affects immunity could improve vaccine effectiveness

A new grant will help Iowa State University researchers figure out how the microbiome, or all the microorganisms that live inside and on human systems, affects immunity and the effectiveness of vaccines. Not everyone responds to vaccines in identical ways, and the researchers will search for ways humans can adjust their microbiomes to optimize vaccine response.

New Cleveland Clinic Research Identifies Link Between Gut Microbes and Stroke

New findings from Cleveland Clinic researchers show for the first time that the gut microbiome impacts stroke severity and functional impairment following stroke. The results, published in Cell Host & Microbe, lay the groundwork for potential new interventions to help treat or prevent stroke. The research was led by Weifei Zhu, Ph.D., and Stanley Hazen, M.D., Ph.D., of Cleveland Clinic’s Lerner Research Institute.

Global Study Finds Each City Has Unique Microbiome Fingerprint of Bacteria and Viruses

Each city has its own unique microbiome, a “fingerprint” of viruses and bacteria that uniquely identify it, according to a new study from an international consortium of researchers that included a team from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM). The international project, which sequenced and analyzed samples collected from public transit systems and hospitals in 60 cities around the world, was published today in the journal Cell.

Meeting Preview: Hot Topics at NUTRITION 2021 LIVE ONLINE

Reporters and bloggers are invited to join top nutrition researchers and practitioners for a dynamic virtual program at NUTRITION 2021 LIVE ONLINE. The flagship meeting of the American Society for Nutrition runs June 7–10, 2021 and features research announcements, expert discussions and more.

Epitranscriptomics, Xenobiotic Nuclear Receptors, Arsenic Exposure, and More Featured in May 2021 Toxicological Sciences

Research on biomarkers, carcinogenesis, regulatory science, and more is available in the latest issue of Toxicological Sciences.

Burning the Forest, Not Just the Trees

Wildfires affect both the visible parts of plants and the plant microbiome. Understanding these effects helps scientists mitigate the effects of wildfires. This research examined microbial DNA samples from tissues of young quaking aspen saplings after a prescribed burn. Aspen relies largely on fire to regenerate. This work demonstrates that fire affects the entire plant microbiome, not just nearby soil.