May 4, 2012

Mayo Clinic in the News Weekly Highlights


May 4, 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

ABC Nightline
Organ Transplants: Gift of Life

Bill Weir and the Nightline Crew report from Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. For many patients in need of vital organ transplants, life is a waiting game. For some, getting a new, healthy organ can happen overnight. But for most, the wait is much longer. Sometimes it can take years. To see the organ transplant process in real-time, “Nightline” spent time with patients on the transplant waiting list at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., one of the leading transplant centers in the world.  Teasers for the organ donation special also appeared on  ABC News and additional Mayo Clinic patient stories appeared online: Waiting Game: 9 Organ Transplant Patients Fight to Survive. WDIO, a Duluth, Minn.-based ABC affiliate ran two stories on Jessica Danielson, a longtime employee of the station:

WDIO Duluth, Duluth Woman's Story Goes National Tonight, Jessica Danielson of Duluth has been at the Mayo Clinic since December, waiting for the heart and liver transplant she needs to survive. We brought you her story in February, and tonight, ABC's Nightline is featuring Jessica's story as part of a half-hour special about organ donations.  The story hits close to home for us since Jessica is a longtime WDIO/WIRT employee. At age 19, Jessica was diagnosed with restrictive cardiomyopathy, which led to congestive heart failure.

WDIO, Wait Continues for Double Organ Transplant Hopeful by Paige Calhoun, “And there is Jessica. The sweet as pie 30-year-old from Duluth,” ABC's Nightline Anchor Bill Weir said of Jessica Danielson in Tuesday's organ transplant special. Statements like that made it clear that Danielson made quite an impression on Weir. “She loves her job, desperately wants to start a family, but knows both will have to wait while she waits for a heart and a liver,” Weir explained in the story. But her wait almost ended Tuesday night. Doctors at the Mayo Clinic said a heart and a liver had become available. Excited by the news, Jessica's family rushed to be by her side.

WDIO Reach: WDIO-TV/10, Duluth, Minn. and WIRT-TV/13, Hibbing, Minn., are owned by Hubbard Broadcasting. WDIO has traditionally finished first in news ratings since it first went on the air in the mid 1960s. The station’s broadcast coverage is northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin.

Additional coverage:  KSTP, Organ Donor Story, … Last nightABC Nightline focused on organ transplants at Mayo Clinic.

Reach:  “Nightline” ranks No. 1 in late night among Total Viewers, Adults 25-54 and Adults 18-49, ahead of both NBC’s “The Tonight Show” and CBS’ “The Late Show.” Total Viewers (3.899 million), Adults 25-54 (1.504 million) and Adults 18-49 (1.197 million), for the week of April 23, 2012, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Context: Bill Weir and the Nightline crew spent a considerable amount of time at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. over the past couple of months interviewing physicians and patients.

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Yahoo News
Grow Your Own Organs
by Bill Weir

There's an 80% chance that in five months Bill Weir will be the first person ever to see his cardiac tissue beating outside his body. Last week, Bill visited Dr. Tim Nelson at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota to report on a revolutionary new stem cell treatment that would have sounded like science fiction even five years ago. Different from the controversial embryonic stem cell treatment, Dr. Nelson's team took a biopsy from Bill's bicep and are in the process of turning those cells into his own beating cardiac tissue; tissue that will beat at the same rate as the heart in his chest.

Reach: Yahoo! reaches more than a half a billion across devices and around the globe. According to news sources roughly 700 million people visit Yahoo websites every month.

Context: While Bill Weir was at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. working on transplant patient stories, he also connected with Tim Nelson, M.D., Ph.D.,  a Mayo Clinic researcher who is focusing on cardiovascular regeneration using bioengineered stem cells to improve our ability to discover, diagnose, and ultimately treat mechanisms of degenerative diseases such as cardiomyopathy that weakens the heart muscle and lead to progressive heart failure. Dr. Nelson’s research is part of Mayo Clinic’s focus on regenerative medicine.

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FOX News
Combination of exercise and computer use may reduce memory loss
by Loren Grush

New research from the Mayo Clinic has revealed that a combination of moderate exercise along with mentally stimulating activities, such as using a computer, help decrease the chances of having memory loss in people older than 70 years old…“We know that from our previous studies, physical exercise is independently associated with better memory and computer use is independently associated with better memory,” said study’s author, Dr. Yonas Geda, a physician scientist with Mayo Clinic in Arizona and a member of the American Academy of Neurology.  Huffington Post Canada

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

Context: Mayo Clinic in Arizona issued a news release on May 1 which indicated that combining mentally stimulating activities, such as using a computer, with moderate exercise decreases your odds of having memory loss more than computer use or exercise alone, a Mayo Clinic study shows. Previous studies have shown that exercising your body and your mind will help your memory but the new study, published in the May 2012 issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, reports a synergistic interaction between computer activities and moderate exercise in "protecting" the brain function in people better than 70 years old. Additional coverage: MyHealthNewsDaily, Star Tribune, IBT Times UK, US News & World Report, HealthDay, MSNBC, India Today, TIME, Telegraph, French Tribune, MPR, TechNewsDaily, News Track India, Psych Central, Healthcare Global, FemaleFirst, MSN Health, iVilliage, Medscape, Winnipeg Free Press.

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Wall Street Journal
Treating Epileptic Seizures in Kids by the Clock
by Dawn Fallik

Tobias Loddenkemper, a pediatric neurologist, works with some of the hardest epilepsy cases—the children whose seizures have been little helped by medication or surgery. Nearly a third of epilepsy patients don't get sufficient relief from conventional drug treatments. But where advanced techniques don't help, Dr. Loddenkemper hopes a simple solution might: timing patients’ medication to better coincide with their seizures…Dr. Elaine Wirrell, director of pediatric epilepsy at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., who wasn't involved in the Children's Hospital research, said targeted dosing is sometimes tried if patients have a predilection for seizures at a specific time.

Circulation: The Wall Street Journal, a US-based newspaper published by Dow Jones & Company, is tops in newspaper circulation in America with an average circulation of 2 million copies on weekdays.

Context: Elaine Wirrell, M.D, specializes in pediatric epilepsy at Mayo Clinic and is frequently sought out to provider her expert perspective.

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Scientists, Zebrafish Team Up To Fight Nicotine Addiction
by Aristea Brady

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester are using an unlikely weapon in the fight against nicotine addiction. It’s not mice, but zebrafish. Sharing 80 percent of our genetic makeup with the aquatic pet, zebrafish produce hundreds of offspring and are perfectfor drawing sweeping scientific conclusions…It’s that observation that has led to the latest discovery in nicotine addiction. Stephen Ekker, Director of the Mayo Addiction Research Center, said zebrafish become addicted to, and even crave, nicotine in the same way that humans do.

Reach: WCCO 4 News is the most-watched newscast in the Twin Cities, in 5 out of 7 newscasts. WCCO 4 News is #1 in 5 out of the 7 newscasts for all viewers in the 25-54 age range and WCCO 4 News is #1 in 7 out of 7 newscasts for female viewers in the 25-54 age range.

Context: Stephen Ekker, Ph.D., is a Mayo Clinic researcher. His zebrafish genetics laboratory is focused on one major next step in the post-genomics era: Assignment of genes and gene sets critical in vertebrate patterning and organogenesis.

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Yahoo Shine!
“Tanning Mom” Case Spotlights Tanning Bed Dangers for Minors

The bizarre case of “Tanning Mom” Patricia Krentcil, a New Jersey parent who allegedly put her 5-year-old daughter in a tanning booth where she sustained burns, comes only weeks after the Mayo Clinic announced that over the last 40 years melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, has increased eightfold for young women. The study attributes the dramatic rise to an increase in the use of indoor tanning beds. More mentions of the melanoma study: Great Falls Tribune

Reach:  Yahoo Shine is a site tailored toward women. Yahoo claims it attracts “more than half a billion consumers every month in more than 30 languages.”

Context:  “Increasing Incidence of Melanoma in Young Adults: An Epidemiologic Study in Olmsted County, Minnesota” was published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings Monday, April 2, 2012. According to the study, the incidence of melanoma has escalated, and young women are the hardest hit. Even as the rates of some cancers are falling, Mayo Clinic is seeing an alarming trend: the dramatic rise of skin cancer, especially among people under 40. A news release, highlighting the results of the study, was distributed worldwide April 1 and under embargo March 26th. The study has been picked up by more than 1,700 media outlets (online, broadcast and print) around the world. Click here for previous coverage.

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Tags: ABC Nightline, American Academy of Neurology, Bill Weir, Dr. Elaine Wirrell, Dr. Tim Nelson, Dr. Tobias Loddenkemper, Dr. Yonas Geda, epilepsy, Fox News, Mayo Clinic Arizona, Mayo Clinic in the News, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, Mayo Clinic Rochester, melanoma, Neurology, Nicotine Dependence Center, Pediatrics, regenerative medicine, Research, stem-cell, Stephen Ekker, Technology, Transplant, Wall Street Journal, WCCO, Wellness, Yahoo Shine!, Yahoo! News, zebrafish genetics laboratory

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