UVA School of Medicine Faculty News Weekly Round-Up
• Blood Discovery Could Benefit Preemies, Help End Platelet Shortages
A new discovery from the UVA School of Medicine may be the key to stopping shortages of these vital blood-clotting cells, cells that can represent the difference between life and death.
The finding also could offer big benefits for premature babies, opening the door to new treatments for a serious condition called neonatal thrombocytopenia that affects up to 30 percent of babies in neonatal intensive care units.
The UVA researchers have identified a “master switch” that they may be able to manipulate to overcome the obstacles that have prevented doctors from producing platelets in large quantities outside the body. “The platelet supply is limited and the demand is growing,” said researcher Adam Goldfarb, MD, of UVA’s Department of Pathology. “The quantities we can produce outside the body are very, very small, and the inability to scale up right now is a major roadblock. We think that our understanding of this pathway is actually a critical step toward fixing that problem.”
The researchers have published their findings in the Journal of Clinical Investigation: http://dx.doi.org/10.1172/JCI88936.
UVA School of Medicine faculty who worked on the study included the following:
• Adam Goldfarb, MD, Professor of Pathology
• Daniel Foltz, PhD Visiting Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics
• Alejandro Gru, MD, Assistant Professor of Pathology
• WINA Radio Interview: Dr. Bobby Chhabra Discusses NFL Pain Management, Addiction
Chhabra is Lillian T. Pratt Distinguished Professor and Department Chair of Orthopaedics at UVA School of Medicine.
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