270 girls attend N.J. Young Women in Bio event | Nonprofit founder emphasizes importance of support networks | Alzheimer's study awarded $100,000 grant to examine link to muscle-mass loss
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November 17, 2017
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Women making news in biosciences
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270 girls attend N.J. Young Women in Bio event
Some 270 girls from 18 New Jersey high schools attended the Young Women in Bio event at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School to learn about careers in biomedical sciences. The event, organized by Janet Alder, an associate professor of neuroscience and cell biology at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, featured a panel discussion and hands-on learning experiences.
MyCentralJersey (Somerville, N.J.) (tiered subscription model)/Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (11/14) 
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7 keys: Put real-world evidence into action
Life sciences organizations need to know how their therapies work in the real world once clinical trials end. And these seven key components to standardizing real-world data and analytics platforms are how they get started. Read the paper, Institutionalizing Real World Evidence.
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Women Movers and Shakers
Nonprofit founder emphasizes importance of support networks
Peggy Carroll worked as an oncology patient advocate in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries for three decades, recently joined Patient Alliances as a managing partner and founded the Fill Your Bucket List Foundation to fulfill adult cancer patients' wishes. Carroll says women should develop strong support networks and never be afraid to ask for help.
WRAL-TV (Raleigh, N.C.) (11/14) 
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Alzheimer's study awarded $100,000 grant to examine link to muscle-mass loss
Holly Van Remmen, chair of the Aging and Metabolism Research Program at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, received a one-year, $100,000 supplemental grant from the National Institute on Aging for her research on the link between Alzheimer's disease and accelerated sarcopenia, a disease in which the body loses skeletal muscle mass. "When we think of Alzheimer's disease pathology, we think of dementia, but a few newer studies indicate that the same mechanisms that cause dementia could affect other neurons and tissues throughout the body," said Van Remmen.
The Oklahoman (Oklahoma City) (11/14) 
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UK-China partnership to focus on synthetic biology of natural products
A five-year collaboration between the Beijing Genomics Institute and the University of Manchester in England will focus on synthetic biology and metabolic engineering of natural products to help promote industrialization, academic research and education. "Researchers from both sides intend to start with the Sc2.0 synthetic yeast as a tool to establish the workflow for high efficient construction and characterization of biosynthesis pathways of natural products, and will gradually extended to industrial strains," said Kristi Heim, senior director of BGI's business development and communications division.
Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (11/10) 
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Data sharing, genomic analysis could improve pathogen surveillance, experts say
Genomic analysis and data sharing should be integral parts of public health surveillance systems, including the One Health Initiative, according to Jennifer Gardy with the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control and Nick Loman with the Institute for Microbiology and Infection at the University of Birmingham. "Combining genomic data with data streams from enhanced One Health surveillance platforms presents an opportunity to detect the population expansions and/or cross-species transmissions that may precede a human health event," Gardy and Loman wrote in Nature Reviews Genetics.
Bio-IT World (11/14) 
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Mass. cancer treatment study awarded $1.7M
The NIH awarded $1.7 million to associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry Anita Mattson at Worcester Polytechnic Institute for a study of potential treatments for persistent cancers. Mattson's research focuses on using silanediols to catalyze synthesis of molecules derived from fungi called chromanones, which could boost the efficacy of cisplatin.
Worcester Business Journal (Mass.) (11/15) 
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NSF awards $2M grant for collaborative study of zoonotic diseases
The Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, the University of Georgia and North Carolina A&T State University will share a $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop tools based on artificial intelligence for forecasting zoonotic disease outbreaks. The researchers, led by Cary Institute disease ecologist Barbara Han and NC A&T researcher Suzanne O'Regan, will develop models of pathogen host species, cross-species transmission and environmental characteristics that promote cross-species transmission.
Homeland Preparedness News (11/14) 
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Women's Health
Study finds steady recurrence rate following therapy cessation in breast cancer
A study in The New England Journal of Medicine found women who stopped using adjuvant endocrine therapy for estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer after five years had a steady rate of recurrences up to 20 years. The findings, based on data from 88 trials involving 62,923 women with ER-positive breast cancer, showed women with larger original cancers and at least four cancer-affected lymph nodes had a 40% recurrence risk over 15 years, while those with smaller cancers that didn't involve the lymph nodes had a 10% risk.
Physician's Briefing/HealthDay News (11/9),  Medical News Today (11/9) 
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Viewpoints and Data Points
MassNextGen program to provide funds, mentoring for female-run biotech startups
A five-year, $1 million initiative by the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and Takeda Pharmaceuticals will provide funding and technical support to early-stage life science companies run by women. Two companies will be selected each year to receive $50,000 and executive coaching, mentoring, and access to entrepreneurs, investors and industry experts through the new MassNextGen program.
WBUR-FM (Boston) (11/10) 
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Tips for a better internal women's networking group
Internal women's networking groups are more effective when the group has a set mission and isn't just about socializing, according to Karen Quintos, chief customer officer for Dell. It's also important to include male colleagues in meetings to help them better understand the issues that women face in the workplace.
Forbes (11/13) 
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Women In Bio News
Industry-wide approach needed for diversity in science
LifeSci Advisors is proud to be the founding sponsor of Women in Bio's Boardroom Ready program, aimed to help executive women achieve their goal of corporate board service. Michael Rice, LifeSci Partner, speaks out about why diversifying the sciences requires an industry-wide approach. Women In Bio recently announced the 10th placement of a female executive to a life sciences company board as part of its Boardroom Ready program.
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Editor's Note
SmartBrief will not publish Friday, Nov. 24
In observance of Thanksgiving in the US, WIB SmartBrief will not publish Friday, Nov. 24. Publication will resume Dec. 1.
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A man may truly live in his dreams, his noblest dreams, but only, only if he is worthy of those dreams.
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