A new research study at Rush University Medical Center and Northwestern Medicine is testing whether a new investigational treatment can slow the memory loss caused by Alzheimer’s disease.
The study will include men and women ages 65 to 85 who have normal thinking and memory function but who may be at risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD) memory loss sometime in the future.
The purpose of the research study, called the Anti-Amyloid Treatment in Asymptomatic Alzheimer’s study (the “A4 study” for short), is to test whether a new investigational drug, called an amyloid antibody, can slow memory loss caused by Alzheimer’s disease.
Amyloid is a protein normally produced in the brain that can build up in older people, forming amyloid plaque deposits. Scientists believe this buildup of deposits may play a key role in the eventual development of Alzheimer’s disease-related memory loss and dementia. The overall goal of the A4 study is to test whether decreasing amyloid with antibody investigational drug can help slow the memory loss associated with amyloid buildup in some people.
Rush University Medical Center once again has been named one of the nation’s top hospitals, according to the new issue of U.S. News & World Report. Rush is ranked in seven of 16 categories included in the magazine’s 2014 -15 “America’s Best Hospitals” issue, which became available online on July 15, and is one of the two top-ranked hospitals in Illinois overall.
Rush’s orthopedics program was ranked No. 6 nationwide, making it the highest ranked orthopedics program in Illinois. Rush’s other ranked programs were geriatrics (No. 17); neurology and neurosurgery (No. 17); nephrology (No. 31); urology (No. 43); cardiology and heart surgery (No. 46); and cancer (No. 48).
U.S. News also noted that the following Rush specialty services are “high-performing”: diabetes and endocrinology; ear, nose and throat; gastroenterology; gynecology; and pulmonary.
Rush University Medical Center has been named one of only 20, advanced “Most Wired” hospitals in the nation, according to the 16th annual survey conducted by Hospitals & Health Networks.
Out of 680 participants, Rush was one of only 20 organizations who met the criteria to be considered for “Most Wired–Advanced Organizations.” To make the advanced list, an organization must show exceptional results in the Most Wired Survey and Benchmarking Study.
The survey focused on health care systems and hospitals throughout the nation using clinical information systems that improve and enhance patient care and the patient experience. The 2014 Most Wired survey is published in the July issue of the magazine.
“This recognition reflects Rush’s deep commitment to use information technology (IT) that engages our patients, maximizes quality, safety, and efficiency of care, and help connect Rush with our broader health care community,” said Dr. Shannon Sims, PhD, associate chief medical information officer at Rush University Medical Center.
Nearly 67 percent of Most Wired hospitals share critical patient information electronically with specialists and other care providers. Most Wired hospitals use information technology to reduce the likelihood of medical errors. For example, at Most Wired hospitals, 81 percent of medications are matched to the patient, nurse and order using bar code technology at the bedside.
Neurological scientists at Rush University Medical Center have found that using cinnamon can reverse the biomechanical, cellular and anatomical changes that occur in the brains of mice with Parkinson’s disease. Results of the study were published in the June 20 issue of the Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology.
“Cinnamon has been used widely as a spice throughout the world for centuries,” said Kalipada Pahan, PhD, study lead researcher and the Floyd A. Davis professor of neurology at Rush. “This could potentially be one of the safest approaches to halt disease progression in Parkinson’s patients.”
“Cinnamon is metabolized in the liver to sodium benzoate, which is an FDA-approved drug used in the treatment for hepatic metabolic defects associated with hyperammonemia,” said Pahan. It is also widely used as a food preservative due to its microbiocidal effect.
Chinese cinnamon (Cinnamonum cassia) and original Ceylon cinnamon (Cinnamonum verum) are two major types of cinnamon that are available in the U.S.
Nearly 300 students from public and Catholic schools near Rush attended the event, which included exhibits that students from six of the schools assembled at SAME’s offices as well as science and nutrition demonstrations by Rush employees.
Part of the Rush Department of Community Affairs, the SAME Network seeks to provide students in schools in the communities surrounding Rush with the same opportunities to learn math and science that are available to students in more affluent areas.
Swim Across America events have raised roughly $50 million for cancer research nationwide.
As many as 10 former Olympians, along with scores of others, will participate in the Swim Across America (SAA) fundraiser Saturday, July 26, at Ohio Street Beach in Chicago. It is SAA’s 21st annual Chicago event.
Swim Across America is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to raising money for cancer research, prevention and treatment through swimming events across the country.
The fundraiser benefits the Rush University Cancer Center, which comprises all of the clinical, research and educational efforts at Rush University Medical Center. SAA is aiming to top the more than $400,000 raised at last year’s event.
“What Swim Across America has achieved in Chicago and around the country is incredible,” said David McClellan, SAA Chicago event director. “We always set our sights high, but we expect a record-breaking 2014 event in hopes of funding groundbreaking cancer research at Rush.”
A disruption of circadian rhythms, when combined with a high-fat, high-sugar diet, may contribute to inflammatory bowel disease and other harmful conditions, according to a recent study conducted by researchers at Rush University Medical Center. The study is online at the peer-reviewed, open-access journal, PLOS ONE.
“Circadian rhythms, which impose a 24-hour cycle on our bodies, are different from sleep patterns,” said Robin M. Voigt, PhD, assistant professor at Rush Medical College and first author of the study. “Sleep is a consequence of circadian rhythms,” Voigt said.
While circadian rhythm disruption may be common among some, the research suggests that it may be contributing to a host of diseases that may be prevented by regulating things such as sleep/wake patterns and times of eating to help prevent circadian rhythm disruption. Including prebiotics or probiotics in the diet can also help normalize the effects of circadian rhythm disruption on the intestinal microbiota to reduce the presence of inflammation.
“It’s something that needs to be addressed — not something people need to be very concerned about, but aware. If you have some of these other risk factors, like a high-fat, high-sugar diet,” or a genetic tendency toward disruption in circadian rhythms, “take precautions, watch your diet, take pre- and probiotics, monitor your health, be vigilant,” Voigt said.