- News Releases
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Mayo Clinic has earned a spot on the 2014 “Best of the Best” Top Hospitals for Hispanics list for the second year in a row. Each year, Hispanic Network Magazine evaluates the nation’s employers, diversity programs and executive leadership, law enforcement and government agencies, as well as colleges, universities and MBA programs for their initiatives and programs with Hispanic communities in the U.S. The magazine also ide ntifies the “Best of the Best” in proactive outreach and accessibility for Hispanic communities and other minority populations. “To be named a Top Hospital for Hispanics acknowledges not only the excellent care we provide to all patients who come through our doors, but also the priority Mayo Clinic has placed on our outreach to diverse communities in order to include them in medical research. The knowledge we gain helps improve the health of the Hispanic/Latino community,” says Sharonne N. Hayes, M.D., director of Mayo’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion.
CHICAGO — In examining why some advanced melanoma patients respond so well to the experimental immunotherapy MK-3475, while others have a less robust response, researchers at Mayo Clinic in Florida found that the size of tumors before treatment was the strongest variable. They say their findings, being presented June 2 at the 50th annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), offered several clinical insights that could lead to different treatment strategies and perhaps influence staging of advanced melanoma. “This was the first robust assessment to determine the impact of baseline tumor size on clinical endpoints in patients with metastatic melanoma — in particular — those receiving MK-3475. Our findings suggest the location of spread is less important than the amount of tumor that is present before treatment,” says the study’s lead investigator, Richard W. Joseph, M.D., an oncologist at Mayo Clinic in Florida. Journalists: Broadcast sound bites with Dr. Joseph are available in the downloads. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d8PYNOBQyhM&feature=youtu.be
CHICAGO — Molecular sequencing could identify ovarian cancer patients who are most likely to benefit from treatment with bevacizumab (Avastin), a Mayo Clinic-led study has found. Results of the research were presented today at the 2014 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting. The addition of bevacizumab to standard therapy extended progression-free survival more for ovarian cancer patients with molecular subtypes labeled as “proliferative” or “mesenchymal” compared to those with subtypes labeled as “immunoreactive” or “differentiated,” says Sean Dowdy, M.D., a Mayo Clinic gynecologic oncologist and senior author of the study. “Though our study is very preliminary, it does suggest that we are getting close to the point where we could use sequencing data to choose more effective and less toxic therapies for patients.”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdi8vCwvfA4 CHICAGO — A chemotherapy regimen consisting of procarbazine, CCNU, and vincristine (PCV) administered following radiation therapy improved progression-free survival and overall survival in adults with low-grade gliomas, a form of brain cancer, when compared to radiation therapy alone. The findings were part of the results of a Phase III clinical trial presented today at the 2014 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting by the study’s primary author Jan Buckner, M.D., deputy director, Cancer Practice, at Mayo Clinic Cancer Center.
PHOENIX — David Dodick, M.D., a neurologist at Mayo Clinic in Arizona and an expert in concussion care and research, joined other medical experts and President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C., at the White House Healthy Kids & Safe Sports Concussion Summit today. The summit is a White House initiative to raise awareness of the increasing rate of concussions among young athletes, and to develop an action plan to protect the safety and health of youth athletes who participate in sport. Medical experts, coaches, parents and players joined President Obama to talk about safe sports.
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Here are highlights from the May issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter. You may cite this publication as often as you wish. Reprinting is allowed for a fee. Mayo Clinic Health Letter attribution is required. Include the following subscription information as your editorial policies permit: Visit http://www.healthletter.mayoclinic.com/ or call toll-free for subscription information, 1-800-333-9037, extension 9771. Full newsletter text: MCHL_May2014 (for journalists only). Choosing the right time for cataract surgery Some degree of vision clouding caused by cataracts occurs in most people as they age. But according to the May issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter, there’s no need to rush scheduling the surgery to remove the cataracts. The right time for surgery should be determined by weighing expected improvements in vision against the very slight risk of a less than ideal outcome. There are several types of age-related cataracts with subtle differences. Except in rare instances, cataracts develop painlessly and gradually, leading to vision changes that include: Increasingly blurred or dim vision Increasing difficulty with night vision Sensitivity to bright light and glare Seeing halos around lights Double vision in one eye In the early stages of the disease, adjustments such as different eyeglasses, brighter lighting and wearing sunglasses to reduce glare may compensate for vision changes. When cataracts interfere with daily tasks, surgery should be considered.
PHOENIX — A new Mayo Clinic study shows that the type of surgeon and the type of hospital have a significant influence on long-term outcomes for patients who undergo surgery for rectal cancer. The study, published in Cancer in May, looked at the characteristics of hospitals where people got their surgery, the surgeons who performed them and how those affect long-term survival. Most surgery for rectal cancer in the United States is performed by general surgeons. Only a minority of patients have their operation performed by a surgeon with subspecialty training in colorectal surgery. The study found that patients who had surgery from a colorectal specialist had better long-term survival compared with those who had their operation performed by a general surgeon. Those patients who had their operations performed at National Cancer Institute designated Comprehensive Cancer Center also had significantly better outcomes.
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Trauma and injury remains a devastating problem in the U.S. It is the leading cause of death for those under the age of 45. Almost 200,000 Americans die of injury every year and nearly all are completely avoidable, Mayo Clinic experts say. May is National Trauma Awareness Month and Mayo Clinic trauma and injury prevention expert, Donald Jenkins, M.D., offers some advice on how to prevent common injuries in adults and kids this summer, while still having fun. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuZgASaZLfk Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Jenkins are available in the downloads.
ROCHESTER, Minn., and SAN FRANCISCO — The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine and Whole Biome today announced a collaboration to develop microbiome targeted diagnostic testing, beginning in Women’s Health, with a focus on preterm labor. Preterm birth is the most common cause of infant death and is the leading cause of long-term disability in children, according to the National Institutes of Health. Many preterm births may be delayed or prevented with microbiome-based testing and intervention, according to Mayo Clinic experts. “Understanding the microbiome, and translating that understanding into enhanced patient care is a major goal within the Center for Individualized Medicine,” says Heidi Nelson, M.D., director of the center’s Microbiome Program. “Our early work suggests the microbiome may play a significant role in triggering preterm labor, and we are excited to take these early results into clinical trials with Whole Biome’s analytics platform.” “This collaboration is bringing together the clinical expertise of Mayo Clinic with our innovative diagnostic tools,” says Colleen Cutcliffe, CEO of Whole Biome. “Together, we plan to transform affordable and detailed microbiome information into tools that will improve patient health and their lives.” Whole Biome’s Complete Biome Test is able to generate microbiome profiles with strain-level resolution at a low cost, enabling researchers and physicians to more rapidly conduct large-scale studies and produce effective microbiome diagnostics to help predict, treat and prevent life-threatening issues.
Flying is as safe as ground travel after chest surgery, Mayo study finds Rochester, Minn. — Summer travel isn’t for vacation alone. For some people, it may include a trip to an out-of-town hospital for surgery. If you are traveling for chest surgery, you may wonder whether it is safer to return home by car or plane. A new Mayo Clinic study found that, contrary to conventional wisdom, air travel is just as safe as ground travel after chest surgery, and there is often no reason to wait for weeks after an operation to fly home. Lead study author Stephen Cassivi, M.D., a Mayo Clinic thoracic surgeon, offers these five tips for safer, more comfortable travel home after surgery:
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Mayo Clinic researchers have discovered an enzyme they say is tightly linked to how aggressive pancreatic cancer will be in a patient. They say the study, published in Molecular Cancer Research, provides key insights into the most aggressive form of the disease, which is one of the deadliest human cancers. It also offers a number of possible future clinical advances, such as a way to gauge outcome in individual patients, and insight into potential therapy to shut down activity of the enzyme, known as Rac1b. “The implication from our research is that Rac1b is activating unique pathways in pancreatic tumors that make this cancer aggressive. If we can therapeutically target that pathway, we may be able to have an impact on this very difficult-to-treat disease,” says the study’s senior investigator, Derek Radisky, Ph.D., a researcher with the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center in Jacksonville, Fla. A potential drug target would have to be found within the cancer-causing pathways activated by Rac1b, since the enzyme is difficult to target because it is involved in many normal biological processes, Dr. Radisky says. He and his colleagues are now working to uncover how Rac1b ramps up pancreatic cancer progression. The RAC1 superfamily of proteins — which play important regulatory roles in cell growth and cell movement — have been implicated in other cancers, such as melanoma and non-small cell lung cancer, but before this study, no one knew that one sub-form, Rac1b, played a role in pancreatic cancer.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LImk-KdMT1w ROCHESTER, Minn. — May 14, 2014 — In a proof of principle clinical trial, Mayo Clinic researchers have demonstrated that virotherapy — destroying cancer with a virus that infects and kills cancer cells but spares normal tissues — can be effective against the deadly cancer multiple myeloma. The findings appear in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Click here to listen to the July 12th Mayo Clinic Radio program featuring Dr. Russell and Stacy Erholtz Journalists: The video package and extra b-roll are available in the downloads. The video package script, including intro and anchor tags, is available here. Two patients in the study received a single intravenous dose of an engineered measles virus (MV-NIS) that is selectively toxic to myeloma plasma cells. Both patients responded, showing reduction of both bone marrow cancer and myeloma protein. One patient, a 49-year-old woman, experienced complete remission of myeloma and has been clear of the disease for over six months. “This is the first study to establish the feasibility of systemic oncolytic virotherapy for disseminated cancer,” says Stephen Russell, M.D., Ph.D., Mayo Clinic hematologist, first author of the paper and co-developer of the therapy. “These patients were not responsive to other therapies and had experienced several recurrences of their disease.” Multiple myeloma is a cancer of plasma cells in the bone marrow, which also causes skeletal or soft tissue tumors. This cancer usually responds to immune system-stimulating drugs, but eventually overcomes them and is rarely cured.