An abnormally enlarged aorta—also called aortic aneurysm—can tear or rupture and cause sudden cardiac death. Unfortunately, patients often show no signs or symptoms before the aorta, which carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body, fails. A team led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) recently used a type of artificial intelligence called deep learning to…
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People who are vaccinated for SARS-CoV-2 but get breakthrough infections may be less likely to spread the virus because they shed it for a shorter period than unvaccinated people who are infected, according a new study led by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The researchers also determined that the Delta variant’s infectiousness is likely not due to high virus production in people…
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An important player in the healthy development of female embryos turns out also to play a key role in regulating the behavior of chromosome loops and gene expression in both sexes, according to a new study by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). These findings, reported in the journal Cell, could help create new targets for drug development. Chromosomes are long, string-like…
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Evasive Maneuvers

In an effort to predict future evolutionary maneuvers of SARS-CoV-2, a research team led by investigators at Harvard Medical School has identified several likely mutations that would allow the virus to evade immune defenses, including natural immunity acquired through infection or from vaccination, as well as antibody-based treatments. The results, published Dec. 2 in Science as an accelerated publication for immediate release,…
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Natasha Hochberg, MD, MPH, associate professor of medicine (section of infectious diseases), has received the 2021 Bailey K. Ashford Medal from the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. The honor is awarded annually for distinguished work in tropical medicine. Hochberg, who also is an Associate Professor of Epidemiology at the School of Public Health, is one of two recipients…
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The versatility of the nervous system comes from not only the diversity of ways in which neurons communicate in circuits, but also their “plasticity,” or ability to change those connections when new information has to be remembered, when their circuit partners change, or other conditions emerge. A new study by neuroscientists at The Picower Institute for Learning and Memory of…
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Phesi Inc., a data-driven provider of AI-powered clinical development analytics products and solutions, has analyzed protocol design data from 1,324,820 US patients, from Phase 2 and 3 single country clinical trials across a total of 1,580 cohorts. This data set represents 495 disease conditions with trials starting from 2010-2020. The results showed that Asian, Hispanic and Latino, Native Americans and…
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Congratulations to Dr. Jeff Marlow for receiving a grant from the DOE for his research on microbial communities. The Marlow Lab’s research seeks to understand microbial communities and how they they contribute to Earth’s environmental processes, as well as how they support life on Earth. Dr. Marlow and his team focus on microbial communities in hard to reach places, like the…
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In a fitting sequel to its entrepreneurship “boot camp” educational lecture series last fall, the MIT Future Founders Initiative has announced the MIT Future Founders Prize Competition, supported by Northpond Ventures, and named the MIT faculty cohort that will participate in this year’s competition. The Future Founders Initiative was established in 2020 to promote female entrepreneurship in biotech. Despite increasing…
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Cancer progresses by evading the immune system. Elucidating diverse immune evasion strategies is a critical step in the search for next-generation immunotherapies for cancer. Here we report that cancer cells can hijack the mitochondria from immune cells via physical nanotubes. Mitochondria are essential for metabolism and activation of immune cells. By using field-emission scanning electron microscopy, fluorophore-tagged mitochondrial transfer tracing…
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