UT Southwestern in the News — December 2008

KRLD 1080: Champagne cork injuries high on New Year's Eve (Dec. 30, 2008)
Don't let the popping of the champagne this New Year's Eve send you to the E.R. Ophthalmologist Dr. Dwight Cavanagh gives tips on this seasonal safety issue. Listen

NPR: Corn syrup gets boost from sweetener studies (Dec. 23, 2008)
'Tis the season to eat sweets — perhaps too many. And the use of one ubiquitous sweetener, high-fructose corn syrup, is particularly controversial. Dr. Elizabeth Parks weighs in on the subject. Listen

Fort Worth Business Press: Economic downturn stresses medical community (Dec. 22, 2008)
As the economy makes nearly everyone tighten their purse strings, many may be putting off medical help because they feel they cannot afford visits or co-pay amounts. Others may search for cheaper alternatives, like exploring home treatments before seeking out a physician or going to a pharmacy clinic with a nurse practitioner instead of the emergency room. Dr. Keith Argenbright, medical director at the UT Southwestern Medical Center-affiliated Moncrief Cancer Resources, comments. “Funding is always an issue,” Dr. Argenbright said. “Funding is an issue for us in good times and in bad times.”  Read More

Reuters: MS drug Tysabri may promote brain infection — study (Dec. 17, 2008)
The popular multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri appears to promote a rare brain infection by suppressing immune system cells in the brain, researchers said on Tuesday. The researchers said it may be possible to make the drug safer by giving patients treatment "holidays" from time to time to allow the brain's immune protection to recover. Dr. Olaf Stuve, assistant professor of neurology, comments.  Read More

The Dallas Morning News: Editorial — Unger named Finalist for Texan of the Year (Dec. 16, 2008)
Roger Unger plays down his accomplishments. He doesn't want to hog the spotlight. He wants to make sure nobody draws hasty conclusions from his recent groundbreaking research that could (emphasis would be his) lead to an insulin substitute for Type I diabetes treatment. And he insists that his research team at UT Southwestern gets the credit. Read More

WFAA-TV: Ear candling gets yeas, nays (Dec. 16, 2008)
Allergies, colds and flu affect hundreds of thousands of North Texans. While we constantly search for easy ways to ease our symptoms, some have turned to a controversial home remedy — ear candling. Some swear by it, but others say you should swear it off. UT Southwestern's Dr. Walter Kutz comments. Watch Video

HealthDay: Obese kids more prone to limb injuries in car crashes (Dec. 11, 2008)
During a car crash, American children who are overweight or obese face twice the risk of injury to their arms, legs and feet that normal-weight children do, a new study reveals. Lona Sandon, an assistant professor of clinical nutrition at UT Southwestern, believes there are a number of factors related to childhood obesity that might account for the heightened risk. Read More

USA TODAY: New data: High-fructose corn syrup no worse than sugar (Dec. 9, 2008)
This week, five papers published in a supplement to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition find no special link between consumption of high-fructose corn syrup and obesity. "People think high-fructose corn syrup is the devil and table sugar is natural," but that's not necessarily true, says Elizabeth Parks, a professor of clinical nutrition at UT Southwestern. Read More

The Dallas Morning News: Science, math plan urges education improvement (Dec. 9, 2008)
A report being issued today by a group of scientists, engineers, Nobel Prize winners and university and industry leaders says Texas needs to work harder to entice science and math teachers to the classroom and students to the professions. Failure to take action may cause Texas to lag in the 21st-century economy, say members of the Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas. The state's students are in a worldwide race, said Michael S. Brown, a scientist with UT Southwestern, a Nobel laureate and a member of the academy's education committee. Read More

Bloomberg: Sickle cell survival depends on hospital, coverage (Dec. 6, 2008)
People with sickle cell disease have a greater chance of surviving hospitalization for complications of the hereditary blood disorder if they are insured and are treated in facilities experienced in their care. Death rates of sickle cell patients were 50 percent higher in hospitals that treat fewer patients with the disease than hospitals that saw a higher number of patients, researchers said at the American Society of Hematology annual conference in San Francisco. The study also found that sickle cell patients without medical insurance were twice as likely to die in the hospital than insured patients. Dr. Timothy McCavit, lead author of the study, comments. Read More

BBC News: Heart disease 'reversed in mice' (Dec. 1, 2008)
Scientists have halted the advance of heart disease in mice — and even reversed some of its effects. The study provides hard evidence that tiny pieces of genetic material called microRNA can play a key role in the development of heart disease. UT Southwestern's Dr. Eric Olson, whose own research focuses on microRNAs and heart disease, said that the results were "exciting." "This is one of the hottest topics in biology at the moment," he said.  Read More