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Giving to medicine and health at the University of Minnesota

June 2009 Archives

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University of Minnesota researchers in the Medical School's Center for Lung Science and Health (CLSH) received an $8.4 million grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health to study a deadly chronic lung disease called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, or IPF.

IPF affects one out of every 10,000 people in the United States, usually striking people in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. Doctors have not identified the cause of IPF, and currently, there is no treatment. Through this NIH-funded study, University researchers aim to better understand the disease and develop new therapies or even a cure.

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Teenagers have a dismal car accident fatality rate—more than a third of deaths for 13- to 19-year-olds are due to motor vehicle crashes. To lower the fatality rate, almost all states, including Minnesota, have put graduated driver licensing (GDL) in place.

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That yummy charred bit of grilled steak might taste delicious, but, according to Kristin Anderson, it might also cause pancreatic cancer. Anderson, SPH associate professor, and her team surveyed the eating habits of more than 62,000 people taking par in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Multi-Center Screening Trial, noting meat intake, preferred cooking methods, and doneness preferences.

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We know smoking contributes to lung cancer, but why do some smokers, heavy and light, get the disease and others don't? The results from a recent study by researcher Jian-Min Yuan brings us closer to an answer.

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School of Public Health researchers began sending letters last month to current and former taconite workers on Minnesota's Iron Range to invite them to participate in a respiratory health survey.

Thumbnail image for Oncologist Tufia Haddad, M.D., says real-time MRI monitoring and data analysis through the I-SPY2 clinical trial will help to determine which new drugs are most beneficial for breast cancer patients. (Photo: Richard Anderson)

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT), once thought of as a magic bullet to relieve menopausal symptoms, turned out to increase a woman's risk for breast cancer and heart disease. But a recent study by SPH doctoral student Jill Johnson confirmed a positive effect of HRT—a reduction in the risk of colorectal cancer.

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In summer 2009, SPH students Amber Koskey (Environmental Health) and Tyler Weber (Maternal Child Health) headed to Mulobere, Uganda. With the University of Minnesota chapter of Engineers Without Borders, they worked to improve access to safe water in this rural village.

Thumbnail image for Pacemaker inventor Earl Bakken receives an honorary medical degree from Medical School Dean Deborah Powell, M.D., as University President Robert Bruininks, Ph.D. looks on.

R.K. Anderson has received the George T. Angell Humanitarian Award from the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Anderson is an expert in human-animal relationships and environments.


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