Monthly Archives: September 2018

Big data, big ethics: how to handle research data from medical emergency settings?

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The collection and use of our personal data has come under increased scrutiny and public attention in recent years, the introduction of EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) being a prime example. When it comes to medical data, how do we balance protecting patients’ data with the benefits that big data and combined datasets bring to medical research? Here, Marieke Bak, one of the authors of research published today in Critical Care, talks us through this conundrum and the particular difficulties in obtaining consent in emergency settings.

Medicine Technology

How identical twins are helping us understand epigenetic factors in rheumatoid arthritis

Retired senior man reading a novel – Outdoor

Because they have identical genomes, identical twins are ideal subjects for studying the effects of epigenetic modifications – changes to the DNA which control the expression of genes but not the DNA sequence itself. A recently published study in Genome Medicine looked at 79 pairs of identical twins, where one had rheumatoid arthritis but other did not, to explore possible epigenetic factors associated with the condition.

Biology Medicine

Adjusting to a new life after forced migration: how are young refugees faring in Australia?

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Published today in BMC Medicine, a new research article presents the first robust look at the experiences of young refugees settling in Australia. The study finds that despite young refugees experiencing more peer problems than Australian norms, there was an overall positive adjustment. Here to talk about the findings, how the study was conducted, and what this means for improving the settlement of refugees is lead author of the article, Winnie Lau.

Health Medicine

Modeling a pulmonary tuberculosis infection

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Although the successful treatment for tuberculosis (TB) has long been established, its length and resulting poor adherence to the necessary regimen means that many people continue to die from the disease. In this guest post, Michael J. Pitcher tells us how his recent study published in Applied Network Science shows that modeling the spatial distribution of TB infections may inform the development of alternative, shorter treatments.

Health Medicine