Washington University

Medical research
3:05 pm
Sat May 28, 2011

Wash U zebrafish facility opens doors to large-scale genetic research, collaboration

The zebrafish, Danio rerio, is a tropical freshwater fish belonging to the minnow family.
(Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio)

Washington University is now home to one of the largest zebrafish research facilities in the world.

The one-inch long, striped tropical fish serve as models for studying human development and disease, from birth defects to heart disease to cancer.

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Breast Cancer Study
5:27 pm
Mon May 9, 2011

Wash U. study: estrogen-reducing drugs may reduce need for mastectomy in breast cancer patients

Mammograms of estrogen-receptor positive breast tumors before and after 16 weeks of aromatase inhibitor therapy. The top images: a tumor that responded to the treatment and regressed. The lower images: a resistant tumor that stayed about the same size.
(Washington University School of Medicine/ Matthew J. Ellis)

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine have shown that estrogen-lowering drugs can help reduce the need for mastectomy in some breast cancer patients.

Estrogen is known to increase tumor growth in the majority of breast cancer patients.

In a new study, post-menopausal women with large breast cancer tumors were given one of three estrogen-lowering drugs before surgery.

Study lead Dr. Matthew Ellis says all three drugs were equally effective in shrinking tumors and reducing the need for complete breast removal.

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Brain Health
3:00 pm
Wed April 6, 2011

Exposure to welding fumes may lead to impaired brain function

Brain scans from a control subject (left), a welder (center), and a subject with idiopathic Parkinson's disease (right), in a study by researchers at Washington University comparing brains of apparently healthy welders to those of Parkinson's patients.
(via Neurology ®)

Workers exposed to the metal manganese in welding fumes may be at increased risk of developing Parkinson’s-like symptoms, including loss of motor control and tremors.

That’s the finding of researchers at Washington University School of Medicine, who compared brain scans of apparently healthy welders to those of Parkinson’s patients.

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Juan Williams
11:50 pm
Mon April 4, 2011

Williams continues to push for federal defunding of NPR

Juan Williams, shown here speaking at the Chautauqua Institute in 2007, repeated his call during an availability with reporters in St. Louis yesterday for the federal defunding of NPR.
(via Flickr/Pete Wright)

Former NPR contributor Juan Williams used an availability with reports before a Monday event at Washington University to repeat his claim that the network would better serve its journalistic values if it gave up government funding.

NPR may be selective in the voices it uses to tell stories, Williams said, often excluding those with a more conservative point of view. But with the voices it uses, it produces quality journalism.

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Thomas Jefferson's Books at Washington University
11:45 am
Mon February 21, 2011

Books from Thomas Jefferson's personal collection found in Wash. U. library

A scrap of paper with Greek notes in Thomas Jefferson’s hand was found tucked in a volume of Plutarch’s Lives. (Joe Angeles, Washington University in St. Louis)

Washington University in St. Louis, named for the first American president, announced this President’s Day, the discovery of a tie to another president.

The university recently learned that its libraries have a collection of books originally owned by Thomas Jefferson.

The 28 titles, including 74 volumes, were donated to Washington University in 1880, with no mention of their provenance.

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Morning round-up
8:37 am
Fri January 28, 2011

Morning headlines: Jim Talent will not challenge McCaskill in 2012, Bristol Palin will not speak at WUSTL, Coleman will try to keep video statements from jury

Former U. S. Senator Jim Talent announced that he will not challenge Claire McCaskill in 2012. (Jim Talent for U.S. Senate Web site)

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Genetics
12:33 pm
Wed January 26, 2011

Researchers sequence genome of endangered orangutans

In the Malay language, oran-utan means "man of the forest." (Perry van Duijnhoven/Carel van Schaik)

An international team of researchers has sequenced the genomes of two species of orangutan.

Lead researcher Devin Locke of the Genome Center at Washington University said a primary motivation for studying the genes of orangutans is their close evolutionary relationship to humans.

“The lessons you learn from studying these species can be applied to understanding of our own evolution and the evolution of the human population as well,” Locke said.

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Insurance lawsuit
9:51 am
Tue January 11, 2011

WashU sued over billing practices

Washington University is the target of a lawsuit challenging the way healthcare providers charge for their service.
(via Flickr/kennedy22)

Steven Powell wants to change the way health care providers charge for their product.

Powell, a factory worker, filed suit Friday challenging a billing practice known as balance billing.

From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

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U.S. Census Data
9:23 am
Mon December 20, 2010

New Census numbers could mean bad news for Missouri, Illinois

A 2010 Census outreach event in July of 2010. New Census data will be released tomorrow which could result in fewer legislative seats for Missouri and Illinois. (Flickr Creative Commons User jennaddenda)

New 2010 U.S. Census figures will be released tomorrow.  And that could be bad news for the St. Louis region.

Some experts say the state is just shy of the population it would need to retain all nine of its seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Washington University political science professor Steven Smith says it would be "a substantial loss" for Missouri's influence on Capitol Hill.

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