Improving the Health of our Hearts

March 16, 2021

(LOS ANGELES) – Every year, about 805,000 Americans have a heart attack and of these about 1 in 5 is a silent heart attack where the person is not even aware of it. During a heart attack, there is a period in which the heart is without a sufficient supply of oxygen.  As a result, there may be damage to some cardiac tissues.  Following the event, there may be enough damage in the heart to show long-term symptoms as chest pains, arrhythmia and a weakened ability of the heart to pump blood.  In severe cases, there may be significant blood pressure changes or the heart can fail completely. 

Multicellular Liver-on-a-Chip For Modeling Fatty Liver Disease

March 11, 2021

(LOS ANGELES) – Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most prevalent chronic liver disease worldwide. It is found in 30% of people in developed countries and occurs in approximately 25% of people in the United States. Risk factors for the disease include obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol and poor eating habits, although this does not exclude individuals without these risk factors.

Low-Voltage, Low-Power Pressure Sensors For Monitoring Health

March 8, 2021

(LOS ANGELES) – Recent advances in technology have opened many possibilities for using wearable and implantable sensors to monitor various indicators of patient health. Wearable pressure sensors are designed to respond to very small changes in bodily pressure, so that physical functions such as pulse rate, blood pressure, breathing rates and even subtle changes in vocal cord vibrations can be monitored in real time with a high degree of sensitivity.

Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation Encourages People to Become Living Kidney Donors With PSA Airing on CBS

March 8, 2021

(Los Angeles) — Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation has joined the OneLegacy Foundation and other like-minded organizations from around the country to help create an important public service announcement and website encouraging people to consider being a living kidney donor. The #BeLikeGina campaign launches this week in conjunction with National Kidney Month and is connected to CBS’s highly-acclaimed BPositive program.

Microneedle Patches For Microdosing Psychedelic Pharmaceuticals

February 22, 2021

(LOS ANGELES) – Although one may think of psychedelic pharmaceuticals as being dangerous and detrimental, scientists have been conducting experiments and clinical trials on some of them and have obtained positive results when testing them for medical use. Research has shown that drugs such as MDMA (a type of methamphetamine), LSD and psilocybin (“magic mushrooms”) can be of benefit in treating severe pain, anxiety, depression and certain mental illnesses. Successful outcomes have been achieved when using psychedelics for treating conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder and addictions to alcohol and smoking, for example. In many cases, these treatments have benefited individuals who had unsuccessfully tried to treat their conditions by other methods.

Breast Cancer-on-a-Chip For Testing Immunotherapy Drugs

February 1, 2021

(LOS ANGELES) – There are many mechanisms by which the body responds to foreign invaders.  One of these involves the T-cells of the immune system, which have a number of different proteins on their surface called “checkpoint proteins.”  These checkpoint proteins bind to proteins on the surface of other cells and can result in either stimulation or suppression of T-cell activity.  Normally, surface proteins on foreign or invading cells will produce a stimulation of T-cell activity against these cells, while T-cell suppression is a built-in mechanism to prevent the immune system from attacking the body’s own normal cells.  

2020 Year in Review: Championing Patient-Centered Work

January 19, 2021

With 2020 winding down, let’s take a moment to reflect on all that we have accomplished this year for the transplant and living donation community. Together with our partners, we launched the COVID-19 Kidney / Transplant Listening and Resource Center, designed new education for living donors and transplant recipients in partnership with the community, presented our work on digital storytelling and innovative education tools at talks and conferences hosted by the American Transplant Congress, Astellas Pharma Inc., One Lambda Inc., the 2020 Canadian Society of Transplantation Virtual Forum, and continued training new researchers and scientists in the field. We also published more than 20 new papers, book chapters, abstracts, and commentaries. This year we faced unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but we were able to pull together to meet those challenges in new and innovative ways to support highly at-risk patients. The transition to the remote environment has led us to some of our best projects yet!