March 2018

Monthly Archive: March 2018

Mar 21 2018

Lifespan Brain Institute Symposium Digs Into Roots of Mental Illness

Leaders of the Lifespan Brain Institute (LiBI) brought together experts in child and adult psychiatry, and basic and translational science, to delve into the origins of mental illness, during the Institute’s first symposium, “Pathological Antecedents to Neuropsychiatric Disorders.” Throughout the day, 200 attendees learned about how the typical trajectory of brain development and function is derailed in psychiatric disorders at various points throughout life — perhaps as early as in the womb.

LiBI is uniquely positioned as a broad collaboration between Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania that supports research across the fetal-adult continuum, which is a pillar of CHOP Research Institute’s strategic plan.

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Mar 9 2018

Lung Stem Cells, 2021 Congress of the ISTH, Backseat Safety, Pan-Cancer Analysis, Gates Cambridge Scholarship

From the discovery of stem cells that multiply after a lung injury, to new data that advances how we think about (and treat) childhood cancer, our first roundup of March is packed with discovery. Read on to learn how our researchers stay at the forefront of pediatric science with a new study that expands what scientists know about the body’s extraordinary ability to regenerate, a pan-cancer project that distinguishes how cancer develops in children versus adults, and a handful of updates on what our investigators have in store for the near future.

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Mar 6 2018

Is an Uncommon Genetic Mutation Linked to Vitamin D-dependent Rickets?

The Findings:

Researchers identified a genetic mutation in CYP3A4 that is linked to vitamin D-dependent rickets (VDDR), a childhood disorder associated with impaired growth and skeletal mineralization. Scientists already knew about two other genetic forms of VDDR, but this third kind is caused by a gain-in-function mutation — a random genetic change that confers a new function on a gene — that leads to accelerated inactivation of vitamin D metabolites. This is a new insight into vitamin D metabolism.

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Mar 2 2018

Exploring the Wide World of the Microbiome

Studying the microbiome — the 40 trillion or so invisible microbes that call your body home — is like being an explorer of a secret world with its own language and lifeforms. Whether these microbes are sometimes friends or sometimes foe depends on subtle interactions with each other and the role of influential factors such as your genetics, environment, age, and diet.

The PennCHOP Microbiome Program awards annual pilot and feasibility grants to help faculty members of the University of Pennsylvania and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia scientific communities navigate this uncharted territory. With the funding awarded in 2017, eight projects are underway, and CHOP clinician-scientists are leading two of them.

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