Learn how to convert pancreas cells into insulin producing cells in this medical report.
Read the full transcript »
Allison Chow: For insidermedicine in 60, I'm Allison Chow from Queen's University. From Washington, the FDA has approved a new noninvasive test for heart transplant rejection. The test called AlloMap analyzes genetic information contained in white blood cells to determine whether a patient's body is rejecting a transplanted heart. Previously, a biopsy had to be performed to check for signs of rejection, which required sending a probe through a vein to remove a small amount of heart tissue, which was then analyzed by a pathologist. From Boston, according to research in the journal Nature, scientists from Harvard have discovered a way to convert pancreas cells into insulin producing cells. The researchers injected a cocktail of proteins into the bodies of diabetic mice, which activated dormant genes that commanded the pancreas cells to transform. The researchers note that this approach could lead to treatments for numerous conditions such as ALS and heart attack. And finally, back to Washington, according to a study in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers have identified a brain chemical that may control appetite and obesity. In a study of 33 people, those who were missing a copy of the gene that controls BDNF or brain-derived neurotrophic factor, were obese by the age of 10 with a tendency to overeat. The researchers suggest that this finding may lead to the development of drugs that could help certain obese people that have not been able to lose weight by other means. For insidermedicine in 60, I'm Allison Chow from Queen's University.