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Duke Neurology Research Round Up, August 2017

Thursday, August 31, 2017
Image courtesy NIH

Duke Neurology faculty and housestaff contributed to eight new peer-reviewed articles published this August. These studies, including three co-authored by Ying Xian, MD, PhD, include examinations of protective factors of Alzheimer’s disease at the genomic level to population-level examinations of what kinds of care people receive after stroke. Here’s a brief summary of these articles.

  • Clinical Neurophysiology Fellow Dmitry Tchapyjnikov, MD, (as well as Pediatric Neurology’s Mohamad Mikati, MD and colleagues) wrote an article in Seizure where they discuss novel clinical manifestations of epileptic encephalopathy in patients with KCNA2 mutations. Read their full article here.
  • Nicole Calakos, MD, PhD, contributed to a Neuropsychopharmacology article that examined how parvalbumin interneurons in mice affected locomotor sensation and place preference in those mice. Read their findings here.
  • W. “Kirby” Gottschalk, PhD, and colleagues examined how genetic variations in expression of TOM40 proteins affected risk for Alzheimer's disease. Their study suggests that TOM40 over-expression may reduce the risk for Alzheimer’s by protecting mitochondrial function. Read the complete study here. 
  • While patients who have had a stroke ideally should receive rehabilitation services, hospitals and skilled nursing facilities do not always provide these services. Ying Xian, MD, PhD, was the lead author of a Stroke study that examined data from nearly 32,000 stroke patients to determine factors that made patients more or less likely to receive rehabilitation. Read what they found here. 
  • Xian also was the senior author of a Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes article that examined patterns in coronary artery bypass grafting among patients with ST-segment–elevation myocardial infarction, finding that the procedure was performed rarely despite mortality rates being low among this population. Read the full article here. 
  • In the same journal, Xian  and colleagues also examined how geography influenced 30-day mortality and readmission rates for ischemic stroke, finding several factors that cause regional variation for both of these factors. Read their full study here.
  • Finally, Xian and colleagues at the DCRI conducted a large, international study that found that only about half of patients with atrial fibrillation worldwide take anticoagulant drugs, despite the medications being highly effective in preventing strokes. Read the full study in The Lancet here. 
  • Lisa Hobson-Webb, MD, was part of a research team that conducted a multi-center blinded prospective review that evaluated the efficacy rituximab in treatment of anti-muscle-specific kinase myasthenia gravis, finding that patients receiving this treatment were more than three times more likely to achieve favorable outcomes. Read the full study in Neurology here. 

Photo courtesy NIH.