March 24th, 2017
Mayo Clinic in the News is a weekly highlights summary of major media coverage. If you would like to be added to the weekly distribution list, send a note to Emily Blahnik with this subject line: SUBSCRIBE to Mayo Clinic in the News.
New York Times
The Best Exercise for Aging Muscles
by Gretchen Reynolds
Exercise is good for people, as everyone knows. But scientists have surprisingly little understanding of its cellular impacts and how those might vary by activity and the age of the exerciser. So researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., recently conducted an experiment on the cells of 72 healthy but sedentary men and women who were 30 or younger or older than 64. After baseline measures were established for their aerobic fitness, their blood-sugar levels and the gene activity and mitochondrial health in their muscle cells, the volunteers were randomly assigned to a particular exercise regimen. It seems as if the decline in the cellular health of muscles associated with aging was “corrected” with exercise, especially if it was intense, says Dr. Sreekumaran Nair, a professor of medicine and an endocrinologist at the Mayo Clinic and the study’s senior author.
Reach: The New York Times has a daily circulation of nearly 649,000 and a Sunday circulation of 1.18 million.
Context: Everyone knows that exercise is good for you, but what type of training helps most, especially when you’re older - say over 65? A Mayo Clinic study says it’s high-intensity aerobic exercise, which can reverse some cellular aspects of aging. The findings appear in Cell Metabolism. Mayo researchers compared high-intensity interval training, resistance training and combined training. All training types improved lean body mass and insulin sensitivity, but only high-intensity and combined training improved aerobic capacity and mitochondrial function for skeletal muscle. Decline in mitochondrial content and function are common in older adults. More information can be found on Mayo Clinic News Network.
Contact: Bob Nellis
Wall Street Journal
Medical School Seeks to Make Training More Compassionate
by Lucette Lagnado
“We found at admission that the kids look fine,” says Liselotte Dyrbye, professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. “It is as if they go through our training process, and they develop worsening mental health.” Dr. Dyrbye blames this on an “absurd” medical system: “It is the curriculum, it is the learning environment, it is the type of stuff you do as a [young] physician, and it is not unique to Mayo, it is not unique to Sinai.” The Mayo researcher, who studies physician well-being, says in addition to mastering vast amounts of information, medical students and residents cope with “complex patient interactions, the suffering, the deaths.” Too often, “it is not a supportive environment—students are set up to compete with each other.”
Context: Liselotte "Lotte" Dyrbe, M.D., MHPE, is a Mayo Clinic Primary Care Internal Medicine physician. Dr. Dyrbe focuses on the well-being of medical students, residents and physicians. Dr. Dyrbye partners with Tait D. Shanafelt, M.D., and Colin P. West, M.D., Ph.D., to direct the Mayo Clinic Department of Medicine Physician Well-Being Program.
Contact: Matt Brenden
Why your doctor should measure blood pressure in both arms
by A. Pawlowski
Healthy people can have slightly different numbers between arms, but a substantial difference in the readings could signal a blockage or an abnormality, said Dr. Sharonne Hayes, director of the Women's Heart Clinic at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. “Probably the biggest thing I see in day-to-day practice is somebody who always gets their blood pressure checked in a given arm and they’re told over and over again it’s great,” Hayes told TODAY. But when her office checks the other arm, it reveals uncontrolled high blood pressure that has gone undetected, which can potentially damage the brain and kidneys.
Reach: Today.com is online site for NBC's Today Show.
Context: Sharonne Hayes, M.D. is a Mayo Clinic cardiologist. Dr. Hayes studies cardiovascular disease and prevention, with a focus on sex and gender differences and conditions that uniquely or predominantly affect women. With a clinical base in the Women's Heart Clinic, Dr. Hayes and her research team utilize novel recruitment methods, social media and online communities, DNA profiling, and sex-specific evaluations to better understand several cardiovascular conditions. A major area of focus is spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD), an uncommon and under-recognized cause of acute coronary syndrome (heart attack) that occurs predominantly in young women.
Contact: Traci Klein
Study Connects Genes to Late Onset Alzheimer’s in African-Americans
by Andrea King Collier
A study from researchers at the Mayo Clinic, published in the February issue of the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, may show some insights into the genetics of the disease in Black Americans who develop the disease after age 65. The study's senior investigator, Dr. Nilufer Ertekin-Taner, M.D., Ph.D., a neurogeneticist and neurologist at Mayo Clinic's Florida campus says that while the reasons for these high rates of Alzheimer's in the Black community remains unknown, there could be multiple reasons. She cites "higher vascular risk factors such as hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol, as well as differences in genetics and/or differences in socioeconomic factors."
Reach: NBC News provides information about breaking news in business, health, entertainment, politics etc… and receives more than 21,547,025 unique visitors each month.
Context: A Mayo Clinic research team has found a new gene mutation that may be a risk factor for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease in African-Americans. This is the first time this gene has been implicated in the development of this disease in this population. Alzheimer’s disease has been understudied in African-Americans, despite the fact that the disease is twice as prevalent in African-Americans, compared to Caucasians and other ethnic groups. This likely pathogenic variant may be unique to the African-American population, the researchers say. It has not been found in Caucasians with Alzheimer’s disease or in gene repositories from more than 60,000 subjects who are not African-Americans. More information on the study can be found on Mayo Clinic News Network.
Contact: Kevin Punsky