In case you missed it: Yale Department of Internal Medicine’s most read stories throughout 2022.
Top 3 of 2022
1. Despite Recovering from COVID-19, Shortness of Breath Persists
Advanced testing of the heart and lungs may reveal why some people who have recovered from COVID-19 still have shortness of breath. This testing is highly specialized and available only at a few sites nationwide, including at Yale. Many patients continue to have ongoing symptoms well after their initial SARS-CoV-2 infection. Symptoms are not limited to those who required hospitalization or ICU admission and commonly occur in those with a history of mild COVID-19. Read the full story.
2. Monkeypox: What You Need to Know About the Recent Outbreaks
While the world continues to grapple with the impact of COVID-19, a different viral outbreak, monkeypox, is making headlines. As new infections pop up across the globe, should countries be bracing themselves for the next pandemic? We spoke with Saad Omer, PhD, director of Yale Institute for Global Health and professor of medicine (infectious diseases), to learn more about the public health implications of the monkeypox outbreaks. Read the full story.
3. Asthma, Allergies, and COVID-19 Explained
Throughout the pandemic, having asthma was considered a risk factor for severe COVID-19. But new data show that people with asthma are relatively protected from severe COVID-19, said Geoffrey Chupp, MD, professor of medicine in the Section of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine (Yale-PCCSM) at Yale School of Medicine (YSM). Read the full story.
ADPKD is Reversible in Preclinical Models, Finds New Yale Study
Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), a genetic disorder, causes fluid-filled cysts to develop on the kidneys, which can impair their function. As part of the growth of cysts, the kidneys develop inflammation and fibrosis, or scarring. The disease is most often caused by a mutation in one of two genes, PKD1 or PKD2, which can be passed down within families, from parent to child. Read the full story.
Yale Scientists Identify a Gene That Can Repair Congenital Heart Defects
A genetic disorder in PRDM6 causes patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), a congenital heart defect common in premature infants — suggesting a potential target for the treatment of congenital heart diseases. Each year 3,000 newborns in the United States are diagnosed with PDA. Infants who are born premature are at greater risk for PDAs. The ductus arteriosus — a temporary blood vessel that connects the aorta and the pulmonary artery — allows blood to flow directly from the heart to the aorta during embryonic development. The vessel normally closes after the birth when smooth muscle cells contract. Read the full story.
“Diagnosis”: The Story Behind The Story
Laura Glick, MD, has a keen interest in rare and unusual diagnoses, going back to her days as a medical student. “There’s an art and a process in figuring out a difficult diagnosis, and I love that challenge,” she says. This interest was put to the ultimate test last fall, when Glick, then a second-year resident in the Department of Internal Medicine’s Traditional Internal Medicine Residency Program, led the way in diagnosing a disease that’s so rare, most physicians never see it. The patient, a 39-year-old man in grave condition, had been airlifted by helicopter from Westerly Hospital to Yale New Haven Hospital (YNHH) with a host of symptoms that defied explanation. Read the full story.
Treating Diabetes Without Drugs? Novel Non-pharmacologic Treatments on the Horizon
A multi-institutional team including Yale School of Medicine (YSM) has demonstrated the ability to use ultrasound to stimulate specific neurometabolic pathways in the body to prevent or reverse the onset of type 2 diabetes in three different preclinical models. The team, which includes the lab of Raimund Herzog, MD, MHS, at YSM, reported its findings in Nature Biomedical Engineering. Read the full story.
Surprising Risk Factors May Predict Heart Attacks in Young Women
A new Yale-led study has for the first time identified which risk factors are more likely to trigger a heart attack or acute myocardial infarction (AMI) for men and women 55 years and younger. Researchers discovered significant sex differences in risk factors associated with AMI and in the strength of associations among young adults, suggesting the need for a sex-specific preventive strategy. For example, hypertension, diabetes, depression, and poverty had stronger associations with AMI in women compared with men, they found. Read the full story.
Medication Results in More Than 20% Weight Reduction in Individuals With Obesity
People with obesity treated with a novel GIP/GLP-1 receptor agonist, tirzepatide, lost about 52 pounds on average, according to results of a new study that were published in New England Journal of Medicine. The study, “Tirzepatide Once Weekly for the Treatment of Obesity,” reports that highly significant weight reduction can be attained with tirzepatide. Read the full story.
Yale Team Develops Vaccine for Deadly Leptospirosis Bacteria
Having recently discovered the toxin that causes the tropical disease leptospirosis to be so lethal, a Yale research team has developed a vaccine that prevents the disease while nearly eliminating the deadly bacteria from the body. The team, led by Joseph Vinetz, MD, professor (infectious diseases) in the Department of Internal Medicine at Yale School of Medicine (YSM), and Reetika Chaurasia, postdoctoral associate at YSM, used the genome project to identify the Leptospira-secreted protein exotoxin as the leading candidate for how leptospirosis kills. They then showed that vaccination with the toxin eliminated the disease, and an antibody neutralized the toxins in preclinical models. Read the full story.
5 Reasons Why a Patient Should See a Rheumatologist
Autoimmune diseases are often complex and difficult to diagnose. And yet, diagnosis and early treatment by a rheumatologist is key to having a positive patient outcome. The rheumatologists in the Section of Rheumatology, Allergy & Immunology at Yale School of Medicine (YSM) are experts at identifying and treating rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory diseases that are often misdiagnosed. A rheumatologist is an internist who has received additional training in the detection and treatment of musculoskeletal disease and systemic autoimmune conditions commonly referred to as rheumatic diseases. Read the full story.
Recently, the appointment of ten new professors became official within the Department of Internal Medicine. One professorial announcement from fiscal year 2021 was also recently approved. Read the full story.
Following Computational Predictions, Scientists Demonstrate that Cancer Drug Counters Pulmonary Fibrosis
An experimental cancer drug with a favorable safety profile shows promise as a treatment for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF), according to a study published on August 23, 2022 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine by Yale School of Medicine, Mount Sinai, and National Jewish researchers. The drug, saracatinib, works as well or better than current FDA-approved treatments for IPF at countering fibrosis in preclinical models, including human lung cells in culture and fibrotic lung slices obtained from IPF patients who received transplants. Read the full story.
How A Common Gene Variant Influences Your Risk of Severe Illness From COVID-19
A new study led by Yale researchers has found that a common genetic variant that occurs in nearly 20% of individuals influences both susceptibility to COVID-19 and the development of severe disease. “Knowledge of this gene variation can identify patients who need to be monitored and treated more aggressively to prevent severe illness,” said the study’s lead author Jenny Shin, MD, PhD, assistant professor of medicine in the Section of Rheumatology, Allergy & Immunology in the internal medicine department of Yale School of Medicine. Read the full story.
Discoveries & Impact (November 2022)
Discoveries & Impact highlights select scientific discoveries per section across the Department of Internal Medicine. Read the full story.
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