From the Front Lines: Translational Successes at BWH

31Aug 17
Finding A New Purpose For Old Drugs

Finding a new purpose for old drugs

Dr. Clemens Scherzer, of the Brigham’s Neurogenomics Laboratory and Parkinson Personalized Medicine Program, has discovered a radically different method of treating Parkinson’s disease – with an asthma drug developed more than 50 years ago.

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11Jul 17
Arming Stem Cells To Target Brain Metastases

Arming stem cells to target brain metastases

Khalid Shah, PhD, and his team have developed a method of targeting tumors that have metastasized to the brain – by arming mesenchymal stem cells with oncolytic herpes simplex virus (oHSV), which specifically kills dividing cancer cells while sparing normal cells.

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17May 17
Blockbuster Cancer Drug Shows Surprising Promise In Treating Severe Asthma

Blockbuster cancer drug shows surprising promise in treating severe asthma

“Known commonly under the brand name Gleevec, Imatinib is a chemotherapy used to treat leukemia and other cancers. However, it has been found to inhibit the growth of mast cells, which are a type of white blood cell that are found in the airways of severe asthmatics. It’s long been hypothesized that mast cells may play a role in asthma…

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02Mar 17
Karp Lab Receives Gates Foundation Grant

Karp Lab Receives Gates Foundation Grant

Jeffrey Karp, PhD and his team recently earned a two-year, $1.2 million grant from the Gates Foundation for their work, “Novel Long-Acting Drug Delivery Platform for HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis.” Karp is a leader in drug delivery, stem cell therapeutics and tissue adhesives. The goal of the work is to develop a long-acting injectable system that can prevent the spread of HIV in…

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22Feb 17
Clemens Scherzer, M.D. Earns Michael J. Fox Consortium Award

Clemens Scherzer, M.D. Earns Michael J. Fox Consortium Award

Clemens Scherzer, MD received the Michael J. Fox Consortium Award to translate insights from his recent work into a clinical trials tool kit for glucocerebrosidase (GBA) mutations, which are associated with Parkinson’s disease and accelerated cognitive decline. Using genetics and big data, Scherzer will develop a new, proactive and personalized medicine for Parkinson’s disease. Scherzer leads an interdisciplinary lab including computer scientists,…

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21Feb 17
Potential Therapy To Combat Hearing Loss Identified In Cross-Institutional Effort

Potential Therapy to Combat Hearing Loss Identified in Cross-Institutional Effort

Researchers at MIT, BWH, and Mass. Eye and Ear have developed a combination of drugs that induce progenitor cells within the ear to proliferate and differentiate into hair cells. Dr. Jeff Karp, TA Advisor and co-lead author on the paper, remarks: “We only need to promote the proliferation of these supporting cells, and then the natural signaling cascade that exists…

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01Feb 17
Deconstructing Rheumatoid Arthritis

Deconstructing Rheumatoid Arthritis

Drs. Michael Brenner and Deepak Rao, co-directors of the Human Immunology Center (HIC) at the Brigham, have discovered a unique type of T cell that is especially prominent in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Using multidimensional cytometry, transcriptomics, and functional assays, they have isolated a population of ‘peripheral helper’ CD4+ T cells uniquely poised to promote B-cell responses and antibody production within pathologically inflamed…

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04Jan 17
“Lab-in-a-Patient” Microdevices Tested In First-in-Man Cancer Trials

“Lab-in-a-Patient” Microdevices Tested in First-in-Man Cancer Trials

Dr. Oliver Jonas, of the BWH Department of Radiology, has developed a device that fights cancer in a rapid and minimally invasive fashion. The device, no larger than the head of a pin, contains tiny reservoirs that hold small doses of various anti-cancer therapies. After spending 24 hours implanted into patients’ tumors and releasing the drugs it holds, it is retrieved with…

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16Dec 16
NIH Chooses BWH For Precision Medicine Initiative

NIH Chooses BWH for Precision Medicine Initiative

“Doctors have always recognized that every patient is unique, and doctors have always tried to tailor their treatments as best they can to individuals. You can match a blood transfusion to a blood type — that was an important discovery. What if matching a cancer cure to our genetic code was just as easy, just as standard? What if figuring out…

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25Nov 16
Discovering An Off Switch For Cancer In Unlikely Places

Discovering an Off Switch for Cancer in Unlikely Places

“When you work with scientists in a different field, it broadens your horizons so that you can learn a lot more – and discover more.”  Dr. Howard Weiner, TA Advisor, on a potential cancer therapy that his team discovered while searching for a treatment for multiple sclerosis.

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05Oct 16
MacRae Wins $75M Award To Combat Coronary Heart Disease

MacRae Wins $75M Award to Combat Coronary Heart Disease

The TA’s faculty director, Dr. Calum MacRae, won the One Brave Idea award- a 75 million dollar investment through the American Heart Association, Verily, and Astra Zeneca. The One Brave Idea is the largest one time investment in a team, focusing on ending coronary heart disease.  His visionary approach includes a world-class team of experts that will conduct a multi-phased…

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18Jun 15
BWH Chief Academic Officer Speaks On The Launch Of The Translational Accelerator

BWH Chief Academic Officer Speaks On the Launch of the Translational Accelerator

Dr. Paul Anderson announces the launch of the Translational Accelerator. Under his leadership, the TA team will be developing solutions to address and anticipate the needs of the BWH’s entire research community. In this interview, Dr. Anderson discusses the major challenges facing research today- the translation phase of the research lifecycle, and how Brigham Health will be changing our approach.

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