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Duke Neurology Research Round Up, February 2018

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

From examining diabetes as a risk factor for stroke, to reviewing how habits form at the neuronal level, to a discussion of existing and future treatments for spinal cord injuries, research by members of the Duke Neurology Department advanced our understanding of clinical neurology and basic neuroscience on multiple fronts. Here’s a summary of the 10 new peer-reviewed articles by our faculty and trainees published during February 2018.

  • Diabetes remains a possible risk factor for stroke outcomes, but data on the condition’s effects on ischemic stroke have been lacking. Ying Xian, MD, PhD contributed to a study that helped to close that information gap. He and colleagues examined more than 400,000 patients from Get with the Guidelines-Stroke registry, finding increased risks of death, hospitalizations, heart failure and stroke recurrences. Read the full study in European Heart Journal here.
  • The growth of health-care mergers over the past decade has led to a corresponding increase in surgeons performing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) procedures at multiple network hospitals. Xian also contributed to a new Annals of Thoracic Surgery article that examined mortality ratios of patients with CABG procedures performed by single- or multiple-center surgeons, finding lower-risk adjusted outcome rates for the former group. Read the full story here.
  • Donald Sanders, MD, Vern Juel, MD, and colleagues wrote a letter to the editors of Muscle and Nerve regarding the recent DAPPER randomized controlled trial of 3,4 diaminopyridine base for Lambert Eaton myasthenia. Read what they wrote here.
  • Scientists have studied habits for decades, but until recently only from a behavioral standpoint. In a new commentary article, Nicole Calakos, MD, PhD, Justin O’Hare, PhD, and Henry Yin, PhD, review advances in our knowledge of habits and how they form at the neuronal level. Read their article in Current Opinions in Behavioral Sciences here.
  • Current treatment of spinal cord injuries focus on cord stabilization, rehabilitation, and managing the condition to control symptoms and prevent complications, with limited treatment options. Michael “Luke” James, MD, was the senior author of a review of current and potential treatments for this condition. Read the article in the Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine here.
  • Donald Sanders, MD, Vern Juel, MD, and colleagues wrote a letter to the editors of Muscle and Nerve regarding the recent DAPPER randomized controlled trial of 3,4 diaminopyridine base for Lambert Eaton myasthenia. Read what they wrote here.
  • Lead authors Ovais Inamullah, MD and Joel Morgenlander, MD, Linh Tran, MD, Mark Skeen, MD, and Duke Pathology’s Roger McLendon, MD, contributed to a case report involving an elderly man with progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy as well as sarcoidosis. Read about this unusual case and how they made their diagnosis here.
  • Poor sleep quality and neighborhood socioeconomic status are both associated with cognitive decline, according to a new study co-authored by Michael Lutz, PhD, and Brenda Plassman, PhD. The Alzheimer’s and Dementia study found that living in a poorer neighborhood and poor sleep quality each had harmful effects on cognition, and together had additive effects. Read their findings here.
  • Even as rates childhood obesity continues to increase, members of this population are often left out of clinical trials. Jeffrey Guptill, MD, MHS, contributed to a study of pantoprazole in this patient group which found that obese children need lower doses of the medication than their non-obese peers to achieve the same result. Read that study here.