Researchers see many applications for zinc imaging | Genetic variant offers some protection against Alzheimer's, study finds | Healthy lifestyle may have positive effect on cognition
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July 23, 2014
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Researchers see many applications for zinc imaging
Zn-63 zinc citrate could potentially be used for imaging of patients with metabolic disorders and various cancers, according to a study in the Journal of Nuclear Medicine that also assessed the method of preparing the agent. Preclinical PET imaging revealed normal biodistribution, suggesting that Zn-63 could be used in evaluating zinc transport in diseases and the results of zinc-related therapies. While the tracer's 38.5-minute half-life carries limitations, "it is anticipated that dynamic PET imaging data may provide quantitative assessments of transport and more rapid turnover processes," researchers wrote. MolecularImaging.net (7/22)
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Clinical News & Research
Genetic variant offers some protection against Alzheimer's, study finds
Canadian researchers have discovered a natural genetic variant that appears to delay Alzheimer's disease, according to a study presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference. They found that variants of the gene HMG CoA reductase, which regulates cholesterol in the brain, could delay AD onset by close to four years. Gizmag (7/21)
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Healthy lifestyle may have positive effect on cognition
People at risk of Alzheimer's disease who focus on healthy diet, physical activity, brain and social engagement and heart health may slow the progression of dementia, Swedish researchers told the Alzheimer's Association International Conference. The study found a 40% difference in cognitive decline between people in the intervention arm of the study and those in a control group given basic health advice. Reuters (7/17)
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Industry Report
DR Systems' eMix upgrades cloud-based image sharing platform
Version 2.0 of the Instant Sender cloud-based medical image exchange platform was recently unveiled by DR Systems' image sharing venture eMix. The updated version enables users to easily and securely send medical imaging data online. To ensure the confidentiality of data accessed through the platform, the package uses eight layers of security including user authentication, network access security and new recipient confirmation. AuntMinnie.com (free registration) (7/17)
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News from the Field
Group creates ACO accreditation program
The Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission has created an accreditation program for accountable care organizations that will evaluate their network infrastructure and exchange connectivity, technical performance, resource management, business processes and other performance quality standards. A group in New Jersey and one in Washington, D.C., have been selected to undergo the beta accreditation process. Healthcare Informatics online (7/21)
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Health Policy
Sunshine Act disclosure website marred by glitches, reports say
Early reports show some glitches with the Open Payments website, the federal database designed to show doctor payments from drugmakers and medtech firms under the Physician Payments Sunshine Act. Some doctors are taking an hour or more to log in and verify their identities. "I am still uncertain, despite arriving at the exit screen, whether error means no pharma reports or HHS [has] a bug to repair," said Dr. Bradley Flansbaum, a hospitalist at New York City's Lenox Hill Hospital. ProPublica (7/21)
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FDA unveils application programming interface to support openFDA initiative
An application programming interface was unveiled by the FDA, as part of its openFDA program, to offer researchers and Web developers direct access to drug adverse incidents and medication error data that were submitted to the agency since 2004. "Developers can now call into the API to add recalls data to mobile apps or consumer websites. And researchers could use the API to study individual manufacturers, product categories, or specific foods or drugs," wrote Dr. Taha Kass-Hout, chief health informatics officer and director of the Office of Informatics and Technology Innovation at the FDA. Health Data Management (7/21)
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Grants and Funding
Broad Institute gets $650M donation for psychiatric research
The Stanley Family Foundation recently donated $650 million to the Broad Institute for psychiatric research, just as the largest analysis to date on the genetics of schizophrenia was published in the journal Nature. After Jonathan Stanley, now 48, developed bipolar disorder at 19, his father, Ted, created the foundation to support psychiatric research. The Broad Institute participates in a research consortium that pools data for research that resulted in the Nature study. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (7/22)
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Advancing Health Care
PCORI-funded project to use data-sharing program to study Phelan-McDermid Syndrome
The TranSmart Foundation announced that the Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation and Harvard Medical School's Center for Biomedical Informatics will use its cTAKES data-sharing and data-analysis system in a research project that will expand insights on Phelan-McDermid Syndrome. The project, which is being funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, will leverage the platform's i2b2 features to consolidate patient data from EHRs and the Phelan-McDermid Syndrome International Registry and advance knowledge about the condition, which affects the development of the brain. GenomeWeb Daily News (free registration) (7/21)
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The young do not know enough to be prudent and therefore they attempt the impossible -- and achieve it, generation after generation."
-- Pearl S. Buck,
American writer
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The news summaries appearing in SNMMI SmartBrief are based on original information from multiple internet sources and are produced by SmartBrief, Inc., an independent e-mail newsletter publisher. The items above are not selected or reviewed by SNMMI prior to publication. Questions and comments may be directed to SmartBrief at snmmi@smartbrief.com.
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