Jennifer Wargo, M.D., elected to the National Academy of Medicine

Jennifer Wargo, M.D., professor of Surgical Oncology and Genomic Medicine at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) for her contributions to the understanding of melanoma treatment response and resistance to cancer therapies, including groundbreaking discoveries that reveal how the gut microbiome influences responses to immunotherapy.

MD Anderson Research Highlights for September 21, 2023

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights showcases the latest breakthroughs in cancer care, research and prevention. These advances are made possible through seamless collaboration between MD Anderson’s world-leading clinicians and scientists, bringing discoveries from the lab to the clinic and back.

Race-based variations in gut bacteria emerge by 3 months of age

Variations in the gut microbiome are linked to the incidence and mortality of diseases. A new study highlights a critical development window during which these differences emerge. The findings are based on analysis of data from 2,756 gut microbiome samples from 729 U.S. children between birth and 12 years of age.

Scientists Name Top Five Foods Rich in Prebiotics

There is growing evidence that consuming prebiotics — certain types of fiber often found in plants that stimulate beneficial bacteria in your gut — can help to maintain a healthy gut microbiome. In a new study, scientists estimated the prebiotic content of thousands of food types by using preexisting literature to find out which foods offer the highest prebiotic content.

Trevor Charles appointed to the Phytobiomes Alliance Board of Directors

The International Alliance for Phytobiomes Research is pleased to announce the appointment of Trevor Charles, Professor in the Department of Biology at University of Waterloo in Canada and Director of the Waterloo Centre for Microbial Research, as a new Board member of the organization

Differences in alcohol metabolism play a role in the severity of alcohol hangovers

Hangovers are common among people who drink alcohol. Previous research showing that a hangover’s combination of both mental and physical misery can occur after a single episode of alcohol consumption also revealed that a rapid breakdown of alcohol into acetaldehyde is associated with less severe hangovers. Findings from an investigation of the metabolic influence of oral microbiota on hangover severity will be shared at the 46th annual scientific meeting of the Research Society on Alcohol (RSA) in Bellevue, Washington.

Gene Expression in Kidneys Is Regulated by the Microbiome in Sex- and Tissue-specific Ways

Article title: Commensal microbiota regulate renal gene expression in a sex-specific manner Authors: Brittni N. Moore and Jennifer L. Pluznick From the authors: “This report demonstrates that renal gene expression is modulated by the microbiome in a sex- and tissue-specific…

CHOP Researchers Show that IgA Fine Tunes the Body’s Interactions with Microbes

A new study by researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) has demonstrated that IgA acts as a “tuner” that regulates the number of microbes the body sees every day, restraining the systemic immune response to these commensal microbes and limiting the development of systemic immune dysregulation.

Fred Hutch at AACR: New targets for cancer therapies, experts available in diversity and cancer screening tests — and Fred Hutch’s Philip Greenberg becomes AACR president

Experts from Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center will present their latest findings on targets in RIT1-driven cancers, ROR1 CAR T-cell immunotherapy, interplay of the microbiome and genetics in colorectal cancer and more at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, to be held April 14-19 in Orlando, Florida.

Your Gut’s Microbiome, On a Chip

In APL Bioengineering, researchers describe how gut-on-a-chip devices can bridge lab models and human biology. Modeling the microbiome is particularly difficult because of its unique environmental conditions, but through creative design, gut-on-a-chip devices can simulate many of these properties, such as the gut’s anaerobic atmosphere, fluid flow, and pulses of contraction/relaxation. Growing intestinal cells in this environment means that they more closely resemble human biology compared to standard laboratory cell cultures.

Mayo Clinic researchers link ovarian cancer to bacteria colonization in microbiome

A specific colonization of microbes in the reproductive tract is commonly found in women with ovarian cancer, according to a new study from Mayo Clinic’s Center for Individualized Medicine. The discovery, published in Scientific Reports, strengthens evidence that the bacterial component of the microbiome — a community of microorganisms that also consists of viruses, yeasts and fungi — is an important indicator for early detection, diagnosis and prognosis of ovarian cancer.

Microbial miners could help humans colonize the moon and Mars

The biochemical process by which cyanobacteria acquire nutrients from rocks in Chile’s Atacama Desert has inspired engineers at the University of California, Irvine to think of new ways microbes might help humans build colonies on the moon and Mars.

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.