March 23, 2012

Mayo Clinic in the News Weekly Highlights


March 23, 2012

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.
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Karl Oestreich, manager enterprise media relations

NY Times Justices Back Mayo Clinic Argument on Patents
by Adam Liptak

The Supreme Court unanimously ruled on Tuesday that medical tests that rely on correlations between drug dosages and treatment are not eligible for patent protection.  Writing for the court, Justice Stephen G. Breyer said natural laws may not be patented standing alone or in connection with processes that involve “well-understood, routine, conventional activity.”

Circulation: The New York Times has the third highest circulation nationally, behind USA Today (2nd) and The Wall Street Journal (1st) with 1,150,589 weekday copies circulated and 1,645,152 circulated on Sundays.

Context: Mayo Clinic Public Affairs made proactive outreach to media outlets nationwide after the U.S. Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision in favor of Mayo Collaborative Services in a case against Prometheus Laboratories, Inc. A copy of Mayo Clinic’s statement from John Noseworthy, M.D., president & CEO, Mayo Clinic is here. Additional coverage: Wall Street Journal, Star Tribune, Chicago Tribune, Reuters, Bloomberg, Minneapolis/ St. Paul Business Journal, MedCity News, PharmaLive, Post-Bulletin, MPR, BringMeTheNews, Pioneer Press, MinnPost, U-T San Diego, WHTC, BIO IT World, California HealthlineLink to even more coverage.

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MPR, Minnesota Sounds and Voices: Jane Belau's piano soothes Mayo patients
by Dan Olson

Music can be therapeutic.  So maybe it's no wonder that there is live music in the lobby of the Mayo Clinic's Gonda building every day. And whenever volunteer pianist Jane Belau is there, some patients and staff even perform with her…Belau, of Rochester, performs for and sometimes with an amazing variety of people. Nearly everyone with any appointment at the Mayo Clinic passes through the lobby concert hall, among them farmers, sheiks and U.S. senators. Another story: MPR

Reach: Minnesota Public Radio operates 43 stations and serves virtually all of Minnesota and parts of the surrounding states. MPR has more than 100,000 members and more than 900,000 listeners each week, which is the largest audience of any regional public radio network.

Context: The music in the Landow Atrium of the Gonda Building is one of the things that makes Mayo Clinic such a special place. Jane Belau performs regularly for patients.

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Twin Cities Public Television, Transplant: A Gift for Life
co-produced by tpt National Productions and Minneapolis filmmaker Dennis Mahoney

Two days before her college graduation, Amy received a frantic phone call from her father’s fiancé: Amy’s dad Charles was found unconscious in his home, and was being rushed to the hospital. Charles was diagnosed with a variceal bleed, and Amy felt overwhelmed by the fact that her strong, healthy father now required not only round-the-clock care, but a liver transplant. Charles’ Mayo Clinic care team put him on a transplant list, but his placement was low.

Reach: Based in St. Paul, Minnesota, tpt is one of the highest rated PBS affiliates in the nation, reaching over 1.3 million people each month through multiple broadcast and online channels.

Context:  “Transplant: A Gift for Life” premiered on Twin Cities Public Television on March 20th.  The documentary features organ recipients both young and old, and donors consisting of friends, family and complete strangers. Transplant surgeons and specialists from both the University of Minnesota Medical Center—Fairview and Mayo Clinic appear in the film, along with Susan Gunderson, the executive director of LifeSource, a non-profit organization dedicated to saving lives through organ and tissue donation in the Upper Midwest.

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Fox News, Vaccine for skin cancer on the horizon?
By Alex Crees

Scientists have created a vaccine that has successfully eradicated skin cancer in some mice, the Mayo Clinic reported Monday. Results from early studies have shown that 60 percent of mice with melanoma were cured in fewer than three months with minimal side effects, thanks to the treatment.  Additional coverage: KTTC, Examiner, News-Medical, Emax Health, e! Science News, Health Canal

Reach: has more than 13 million unique visitors each month.

Context: Mayo Clinic researchers have trained mouse immune systems to eradicate skin cancer from within, using a genetic combination of human DNA from melanoma cells and a cousin of the rabies virus. The strategy, called cancer immunotherapy, uses a genetically engineered version of the vesicular stomatitis virus to deliver a broad spectrum of genes derived from melanoma cancer cells directly into tumors. In early studies, 60 percent of tumor-burdened mice were cured in fewer than three months and with minimal side effects. Results of the latest study appear this in the journal Nature Biotechnology. The news release is here.

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NPR, Mount Everest Still Holds Mysteries For Scientists

On his upcoming trip to Mount Everest, mountaineer Conrad Anker will team up with geologist Dave Lageson to remeasure the peak's exact altitude — stat scientists still dispute. Physiologist Bryan Taylor will also be in Nepal to monitor how Anker's blood, brain and muscles respond to the thin Himalayan air.

Reach: Science Friday is a weekly science talk show, broadcast live over public radio stations nationwide from 2-4 pm Eastern time as part of NPR's 'Talk of the Nation' programming.

Context: Mayo Clinic researchers are joining an expedition to Everest with National Geographic, The North Face and Montana State University. The Mayo group will monitor up to nine climbers from base camp for the duration of the climb, which will run from mid-April to mid-May. Bryan Taylor, Ph.D., one of the Mayo Clinic investigators who will be on expedition, appeared on NPR’s Science Friday recently. For more details about the expedition, refer to the news release.

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HealthDay, Varicose Veins Keep Some in Long Pants All Year
by Robert Preidt

Varicose veins are a cosmetic issue for most people, but they can be a sign of a serious medical problem for others, an expert says. “Twenty to 25 percent of Americans have varicose veins, and about 6 percent have more advanced venous disease including skin changes or, occasionally, ulcerations,” Dr. Peter Gloviczki, a vascular surgeon at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said in a clinic news release.

Reach: HealthDay distributes its health news to media outlets several times each day. This HealthDay article also appeared in the following media outlets:, US News & World Report, Medical Xpress

Context: Mayo Clinic Public Affairs distributed an “expert alert” featuring Mayo Clinic vascular surgeon Peter Gloviczki, M.D.

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Tags: Cancer, cancer immunotherapy, Complementary/Alternative Medicine, Dermatology, Dr. Bryan Taylor, Dr. John Noseworthy, Dr. Peter Gloviczki, Facilities, Fox News, Gonda Building, HealthDay, Immunology, Jane Belau, Landow Atrium, Legal / Leadership, LifeSource, Mayo Clinic in the News, Mayo Clinic Rochester, Mayo Collaborative Services, melanoma, Montana State University, Mount Everest, MPR, National Geographic, Nature Biotechnology, NPR, Preventive Medicine, Prometheus Laboratories, Research, Supreme Court, Susan Gunderson, The New York Times, The North Face, Transplant, Twin Cities Public Television, University of Minnesota Medical Center, varicose veins, Vascular, Wellness

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