Biomarker Bulletin: April 5, 2011

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Biomarker Bulletin is an occasionally recurring update of news focused on biomarkers aggregated at Biomarkers are physical, functional or biochemical indicators of normal physiological or disease processes. The individualization of disease management — personalized medicine — is dependent on developing biomarkers that promote specific clinical domains, including early detection, risk, diagnosis, prognosis and predicted response to therapy.

Biomarker Commons
  • Biomarker Combinations Successfully Discriminate Between Asthma and COPD

    Researchers in Australia have identified a panel of four biomarkers that may aid in the diagnosis and management of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The study, published in the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, found that the biomarkers may be used in different combinations to successfully identify patients with either of the airway diseases.

  • Plasma Biomarkers in Liver Cancer Refine Stratification of Patient Risk

    According to an Internal Medicine News report, data presented at the 2011 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting on gastrointestinal cancers in January sponsored by the American Society of Clinical Oncology suggests that a simple blood test may improve on systems conventionally used to estimate prognosis in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.

  • Xention to Characterize Biomarkers for AF Consortium

    Cambridge-based biopharmaceutical company Xention announced yesterday that it is a partner in the new multidisciplinary atrial fibrillation research consortium, the European Network for Translational Research in Atrial Fibrillation (EUTRAF). The consortium has been awarded a 12 million euro grant to engage in atrial fibrillation (AF) research.

  • Five Metabolite Levels May Improve Risk Prediction for Diabetes

    Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) recently identified five amino acids whose levels indicated increased diabetes risk in a general population. Moreover, the biomarkers could differentiate, among individuals with traditional risk factors such as obesity, those most likely to actually develop diabetes. The findings are published in the journal Nature Medicine.

  • Endothelial Microparticles (EMPs) in the Blood Useful for Identifying Early Signs of Emphysema

    According to a recent study published in the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, small particles in the blood released by cells lining the lungs may help clinicians diagnose emphysema in its earliest stages. The particles, called endothelial microparticles (EMPs), are shed during disease progression as pulmonary capillaries in the lungs are injured and die.

About the Author

Walter Jessen is a senior writer for Highlight HEALTH Media.