Academics & Research



Test Could Help Curb Unnecessary Antibiotic Use in Kids

When a doctor diagnoses a child with pneumonia, all too often the default is to prescribe antibiotics. Considering that antibiotics can cause serious side effects and overuse causes microbes to become resistant to the life-saving drugs, finding ways to curb the prescribing spree has become a public health priority. To make a dent in the problem, Stockman et al., have identified a rapid test that could tell physicians whether or not a child’s pneumonia is caused by bacterial infection.

Gene Linked to Early Menopause

While most women experience menopause around 51 years of age, women with primary ovarian insufficiency go through menopause before the age of 40, with some going through the life-altering event as early as in their teens. Corrine Welt, MD, professor of internal medicine at University of Utah Health, believes an answer may lie in the scores of genetic data housed in the Utah Population Database (UPDB).

How Cells Repair the “Bubble Wrap” that Protects DNA

Our DNA is wrapped in a bubble, a double membrane called the nuclear envelope, which protects it and directs molecular traffic to and from the nucleus. Many natural processes, such as cell division, create holes in the nuclear envelope, and for years, scientists have puzzled over how these gaps are filled. New research from the Department of Biochemistry and Department of Oncological Sciences has helped to elucidate this process, finding how an ancient pathway is recruited to do the job.

Waking Up “Sleeping” HIV In Order To Kill It

Thanks to antiretroviral drugs, HIV is no longer the death sentence it once was for those who have access to these medicines. But HIV is still not curable because the virus is able hide out in cells in the body, where it lies dormant, unaffected by drugs. Researchers are trying to find a way to reactivate the virus, so they can kill it off once and for all. A new study, published in Cell Reports, demonstrates how a new compound is able to force dormant HIV cells out of hiding.

Vicente PlanellesPathology

Relief at Their Fingertips: Phone Monitoring Program Reduces Suffering of Chemotherapy Patients

Patients undergoing chemotherapy often experience difficult but treatable symptoms – including fatigue, pain, and nausea - in between healthcare appointments. But because providers are often not aware of them, some patients undergo unnecessary suffering. A new study by investigators at Huntsman Cancer Institute and the College of Nursing at the University of Utah shows that relief could be just a phone call away.

When it Comes to Preventing Clots, Deviating from Recommended Dosing Could Come with a Cost

For patients affected by atrial fibrillation, a form of irregular heartbeat, increased risk for blood clots and stroke is a serious concern. Medicines used to thin the blood offer a relatively simple treatment that can significantly reduce the risk of clots and strokes. Steinberg and colleagues found that 13 percent of patients did not receive proper dosing of non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants (NOACs), a specific kind of blood thinner, doubling risk for death in over dosed patients. Compared to patients receiving the appropriate dosage, the risk of death was nearly doubled in over-dosed patients, and under-dosed patients experienced increased rates of hospitalization due to cardiac events.