Big data with heart, for psychiatric disorders

Heart rate variability can be used to monitor psychiatric Read more

Unlocking schizophrenia biology via genetics

A genetic risk factor for schizophrenia could be a key to unlock the biology of the complex Read more

Brain circuitry linked to social connection and desire to cuddle

Just like humans, prairie voles are capable of consistently forming social bonds with mating partners, a rare trait in the animal Read more

Small, single incision for surgery helps young patients

Emory University and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta pediatric physician Dr. Mark Wulkan is among the first surgeons in Georgia to perform single-site incision surgery on pediatric patients for routine surgeries.

Dr. Mark Wulkan

Dr. Mark Wulkan

Dr. Wulkan is using this method for multiple procedures, including appendectomy, removal of the spleen, and stomach surgery.

“Single-site surgery takes minimally invasive surgery (laparoscopic surgery) to the next level,” said Dr. Wulkan, is an associate professor of surgery and pediatrics in the Emory University School of Medicine and who performs surgery at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston. “Children leave the operating room with virtually no scars.”

Traditional laparoscopic surgical incisions are made in different locations on the abdominal wall, resulting in several small scars. The single-site method, however, is considered scarless because only one incision is made in the belly button and is typically difficult to see. Pediatric patients who undergo single-site procedures enjoy all the benefits of laparoscopic surgery, such as rapid recovery and less pain than that associated with traditional open surgery.

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Expert studies collective decision-making

Gregory Berns

Gregory Berns

Greg Berns, MD, PhD, is the Emory psychiatrist who heads the Center for Neuropolicy. The Center focuses on how the brain influences decision-making in politics, policy and business. The center involves School of Medicine, Emory College and Goizueta Business School researchers.

Berns says, “We all live in groups. Sometimes groups make good decisions, but groups often behave worse than any of its members would. We’re approaching the problem of collective decision-making from a new perspective by studying how the human brain functions in groups.”

Center members advise decision-makers of all kinds by conducting experiments focused on biologically based pressures that influence collective decision-making. Through their discoveries, researchers will better understand how culture, intelligence and environment influence the way decisions are made and how basic human tendencies drive judgment in certain situations.

As Berns points out, people also need to understand how religious and political ideologies become transformed in the brain and can subvert basic self-survival value judgments, a phenomenon that occurs in war and terrorism.

“Collective decision-making is political, but politics are biological,” says Berns. “The human brain evolved to function in social groups. By discovering how our brains are wired to behave in groups, we can find solutions to problems of global impact.”Berns is the author of Satisfaction: The Science of Finding True Fulfillment and Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently.

Learn more in the Center media kit, Emory Health magazine or listen to a podcast.

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Emory and Georgia Tech

Over the past twenty years, the research partnership between Emory University and the Georgia Institute of Technology has developed into one of the leading bioengineering and biomedical research and educational programs in the nation. In recent years this partnership has resulted in the development of several pieces of diagnostic and medical-assistant technology, with medical experts on the Emory side working with engineers on the Georgia Tech side.

An example of this collaboration is the El-E robot, designed to perform simple tasks such as opening drawers and retrieving objects. Clinicians at Emory’s School of Medicine and engineers at Georgia Tech created the 5½-foot-tall machine, which glides across the floor on wheels and takes direction from a laser pointer that users can control in a variety of ways, depending on their preferences and capabilities. El-E is no mere toy, however: The machine could help patients with significant motor impairments, such as sufferers of ALS, maintain their independence and help relieve physical and financial burdens faced by caregivers.

 

Another result of the Emory-Georgia Tech collaboration is DETECT, a portable device capable of detecting the earliest stage of Alzheimer’s disease, mild cognitive impairment, in any environment. DETECT has a helmet device that includes an LCD display in a visor, along with a computer and noise-reduction headphones. DETECT gives the patient a battery of words and pictures to assess cognitive abilities—reaction time and memory capabilities. The low-cost test takes approximately 10 minutes. The device was co-developed by emergency medicine physician David Wright, and Michelle LaPlaca, a scientist in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory.

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Dr. Sanjay Gupta: CNN correspondent & Emory doctor

Millions of TV viewers know Dr. Sanjay Gupta as CNN’s chief medical correspondent. But did you know that off the air, Dr. Gupta is a practicing trauma neurosurgeon at nearby Grady Memorial Hospital? Gupta, like most of the doctors at the hospital, is an Emory physician. CNN medical producer Danielle Dellorto put together this video showing what his life as a surgeon is like.


 

 

Gupta works with Emory doctors on CNN as well. Two of the four members on Gupta’s CNNHealth.com medical advisory team are Emory doctors.

You can see correspondent Gupta on “Paging Dr. Gupta” on CNN 6-10 a.m., Monday-Friday or read the Paging Dr. Gupta Blog.

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As China grows, so does Emory

Peking University

Peking University in Beijing, China

The meteoritic rise of China in the world has seen a corresponding rise in the number of partnerships between Emory and Chinese universities and researchers.

In February 2009, Emory, Georgia Tech, and Peking University announced a joint biomedical engineering PhD program. Representatives from the schools have been laying the groundwork for this program during the past five years.  In the Fall of 2009, members of the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University traveled to Beijing to finalize the program details with the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Peking University (PKU). Faculty collaborations have been funded by seed grants and, as a result, several new research projects are already underway.

Public health units at Emory are also reaching out to China. In February 2009, it was announced that Emory University has received a $14 million, five-year grant from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help reduce the burden of tobacco use in China. The Emory Global Health Institute, in collaboration with the Tobacco Technical Assistance Consortium (TTAC) of Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health, will establish the Emory Global Health Institute — China Tobacco Partnership.

China is likewise reaching out to Emory. According to the international business news site Global Atlanta, delegates from China’s Shandong province recently came to Atlanta to meet with health care professionals, public health officials, educational institutions and legislators.The group visited the the Emory Spine Center, where they met with acupuncturists using traditional Chinese techniques alongside new therapies.

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Emory and Grady

Grady Memorial Hospital

Grady Memorial Hospital

Every day Atlanta’s lead stories call attention to it: “Shot teen taken to Grady,” “Burn victim ambulanced to Grady,” “Accident victim stable at Grady”– Atlantans, Georgians, and even out of state residents taken to Grady Memorial Hospital in their hour of direst need. What many don’t know however, is that Grady, Atlanta’s public hospital, doesn’t only treat emergencies; Grady is recognized for programs for breast cancer, stroke, sickle cell anemia and more.

Something else many don’t know: “Grady doctors” are Emory or Morehouse doctors. All doctors at Grady are faculty or residents from Emory University School of Medicine or Morehouse School of Medicine. Emory physicians provide close to 85 percent of all physician patient care delivered at Grady. For Emory, this connection goes back to before the Civil War.

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Diabetes and heart disease: Not just a Western problem

As more and more people around the globe embrace the more unhealthy aspects of the Western diet and lifestyle, more and more people around the globe are developing diet- and lifestyle-related illnesses, like diabetes and heart disease. In heavily populated areas like South Asia, this means millions of new cases, including millions of young people. In light of this worrisome trend, Emory’s Dr. K. M. Venkat Narayan and his colleagues are launching a new center of excellence aimed at preventing and controlling heart disease and diabetes in India and Pakistan.

The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health has awarded Emory University and the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) a $3 million, five-year contract to establish a Global Center of Excellence for Prevention and Control of Cardiometabolic Diseases in South Asia.

Crowd in India

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Translating research into life-saving

You or a loved one is suffering severe brain trauma in the wake of an accident. Imagine if doctors told you there was a treatment available that could up your chances of survival and even your chances at recovery. This isn’t just theoretical, because that’s an option some Emory patients have had, thanks to the availability of PROTECT, a progesterone-based treatment developed at Emory University and being administered by Emory trauma doctors.

Dr. Donald Stein, whose research led to the development of PROTECT, has just been honored by the Association for Psychological Science for his research and commitment to finding treatments and cures for traumatic brain injured patients.

Watch the video below to learn the real-life story of an accident victim who benefited from Stein’s work and the work of Emory’s doctors.

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Emory and the CDC

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Headquarters

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Headquarters

Today, as Dr. Thomas Frieden takes the helm of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Emory’s own Dr. Kenneth Thorpe is providing expert commentary on President Barack Obama’s decision to name the former New York City health commissioner to the position and discussing what type of impact Frieden could make in the cheap oakley future.

The CDC, located adjacent to the Emory University campus, has strong ties to the university, including former CDC director, Dr. Jeffrey Koplan, who now heads Emory’s Global Health Institute. Many within the Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health have strong connections to the CDC.

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Emory docs make “House Calls”

If you watch the 8 a.m. hour of Fox 5 Atlanta’s “Good Day Atlanta,” you can see Grady Hospital-based internal medicine physicians Neil Winawer and Kimberly Manning. The doctors dispense medical information on Mondays and Wednesdays each week from the set of Fox 5’s “Good Day Housecall.” Following a crash course in broadcast journalism, the doctors research and write their own segments. Recent topics include swine flu, emergency contraception, brain trauma, and fitness in your 40s.

Manning joined the Emory faculty in 2001 and is program  director for maglie calcio poco prezzo Transitional Year Residency Program. Winawer, who is Manning’s faculty mentor, has been at Emory for 13 years Both doctors work at Grady Memorial Hospital in Downtown Atlanta. Read more about “Housecalls” on the Emory-Grady web site.

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