Where do new medicines start? They start in the lab, where scientists study the biological mechanisms that contribute to good health or, when they go awry, cause disease. Beaker highlights interesting science, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute and our supporters.
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The first experimental drug to boost brain synapses lost in Alzheimer’s disease has been developed by researchers at Sanford-Burnham. The drug, called NitroMemantine, combines two FDA-approved medicines to stop the destructive cascade of changes in the brain that destroys the connections between neurons, leading to memory loss and cognitive decline.
Talantova, M., Sanz-Blasco, S., Zhang, X., Xia, P., Akhtar, M., Okamoto, S., Dziewczapolski, G., Nakamura, T., Cao, G., Pratt, A. & Kang, Y. (2013). A induces astrocytic glutamate release, extrasynaptic NMDA receptor activation, and synaptic loss, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1306832110
Between May 29 and 31, students and faculty of the Sanford-Burnham Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences gathered in Palm Springs, Calif., for their 4th annual program retreat. This is the first post in a series about Sanford-Burnham's Graduate School.
A new study involving Sanford-Burnham's Erkki Ruoslahti, M.D., Ph.D., contributing to work by Samir Mitragotri, Ph.D., at the University of California, Santa Barbara, found that the shape of nanoparticles can enhance drug targeting. The study found that rod-shaped nanoparticles—or nanorods—as opposed to spherical nanoparticles, appear to adhere more effectively to the surface of endothelial cells that line the inside of blood vessels.
Kolhar, P., Anselmo, A., Gupta, V., Pant, K., Prabhakarpandian, B., Ruoslahti, E. & Mitragotri, S. (2013). Using shape effects to target antibody-coated nanoparticles to lung and brain endothelium, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1308345110
This is the last post in our National Cancer Research Month series, highlighting cancer therapies to watch.
Check out our latest video about our CDG research and how it impacts patients.