Health Sciences

Consuming alcohol leads to epigenetic changes in brain memory centers

What drives the biology behind alcohol cravings has remained largely unknown. A new Penn study shows how a byproduct of the alcohol breakdown produced mostly in the liver travels to the brain’s learning system and impacts behavior around environmental cues to drink.

Penn Today Staff

The science of sensations

To confront the ills of the opioid epidemic, scientists must develop a fundamental understanding of the biology of pain. Biologist Ishmail Abdus-Saboor’s work is setting the stage for screening alternative drugs and uncovering new pathways that an opioid-alternative could target.

Katherine Unger Baillie

Providing a ‘LIFT’ to first-generation med students

All new students face challenges in the transition to college, but for first-generation, low-income (FGLI) students, it’s a whole new world. Providing a community for these students helps counter feelings of isolation and the “impostor” syndrome that FGLI students may experience.

Penn Today Staff

The price of noise

Silence is a rare commodity these days, because society has only gotten louder. “And we're all paying a price for it in terms of our health,” says Mathias Basner, an associate professor of sleep and chronobiology in psychiatry at Penn.

Penn Today Staff



In the News


Science

Deciphering a cancer treatment’s dark side

Saar Gill of the Perelman School of Medicine said it would be easier to treat cancer using CAR-T cell therapy without the looming possibility of triggering cytokine release syndrome.

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Rolling Stone

Can melatonin vapes safely help people sleep?

Philip Gehrman of the Perelman School of Medicine commented on the use of melatonin to aid sleep. “There have been quite a few randomized trials showing that melatonin is no better than placebo to help people sleep,” he said.

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The New York Times

Can melatonin vapes safely help people sleep?

Julio Chirinos of the Perelman School of Medicine wrote an editorial to accompany a new study about the effects of marathon running on the heart. “Exercise is great for the entire body, including the arteries,” he said.

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“Academic Minute” (WAMC, Northeast Public Radio)

Jonathan Moreno on bioethics and the transformation of health care in America

PIK Professor Jonathan Moreno discussed the book “Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven but Nobody Wants to Die: Bioethics and the Transformation of Health Care in America,” which he co-authored with President Amy Gutmann.

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The New York Times

The F.D.A. is in trouble. Here’s how to fix it

Steven Joffe of the Perelman School of Medicine spoke about the tensions between groups that want medical products to be proven effective before the F.D.A. approves them for public use and groups that believe patients can make their own decisions once the products pass basic safety testing. “The F.D.A. has been moving in the latter direction under great political and public pressure,” he said.

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