Herceptin has been touted as a wonder drug for women with HER2-positive breast cancer, an aggressive form of the disease that is fueled by excess production of the HER2 protein. However, not all of these patients respond to the drug, and many who do respond eventually acquire resistance. A team of researchers led by Mayo Clinic has found a promising way to circumvent this obstacle.

By Kelley Luedke • April 28, 2015

A recent study in the Brain journal, conducted by researchers in Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, evaluates the correspondence of Thal amyloid phase to Braak tangle stage and ante-mortem clinical characteristics in a large autopsy cohort and examines the relevance of Thal amyloid phase in a prospectively followed autopsied cohort who underwent ante-mortem.

By Kelley Luedke • April 17, 2015

Two fatal neurodegenerative diseases, frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and motor neuron disease (MND), demonstrate clinical, pathological, and genetic overlap. Hexanucleotide repeat expansions in chromosome 9 open reading frame 72 (C9ORF72) are causative for FTD and MND. In a recent study in Molecular Neurodegeneration, Mayo Clinic researchers set out to identify genetic modifiers of disease risk, age at onset, and survival after onset that may contribute to clinical variability.

By Kelley Luedke • April 17, 2015

Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time of flight (MALDI TOF) mass spectrometry (MS) is being rapidly embraced by laboratories around the globe for routine bacterial and fungal identification in clinical microbiology laboratories. A recent review in Clinical Chemistry, by Robin Patel, M.D., Chair of the Division of Clinical Microbiology at Mayo Clinic, discusses how MALDI-TOF MS provides rapid, accurate, and cost-effective identification of cultured bacteria and fungi.

By Kelley Luedke • April 13, 2015

Recent large-scale genomic analyses have uncovered dozens of common genetic variants that are associated with breast cancer. Each variant, however, contributes only a tiny amount to a person’s overall risk of developing the disease. A Mayo Clinic-led team of international researchers has now combined 77 of these common genetic variants into a single risk factor that can be used to improve the identification of women with an elevated risk of breast cancer.

By Kelley Luedke • April 6, 2015

Endometrial cancer (EC) is the most common gynecologic malignancy in the United States and in many other developed countries. Women with EC detected at an early stage have a higher likelihood of being cured of their cancer. A recent study by Mayo Clinic researchers, published in Gynecologic Oncology, aims to demonstrate the feasibility of detecting EC by combining minimally invasive specimen collection techniques with sensitive molecular testing.

By Kelley Luedke • March 25, 2015

Greg Widseth, a 47-year old Polk County attorney, was suddenly hit by a rare disease that prompted his immune system to attack his brain cells, resulting in as many as 60 seizures a day. Special blood and spinal fluid tests developed by Mayo Medical Laboratories confirmed that Widseth had antibodies known to target certain brain cells. Read the full article to learn more about autoimmune disorder testing and treatment.

By Kelley Luedke • March 22, 2015

With the emergence of individualized medicine—treating a person as an individual and tailoring health care specific to that patient—developments in precision diagnostics are a critical driving force, especially via molecular testing. A recent study by Mayo Clinic researchers, published in the journal Human Pathology, aims to design and implement a scalable process that permits pre-appointment BRAF/KIT mutation analysis in melanoma patients.

By Kelley Luedke • March 17, 2015

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) and American Urological Association (AUA) provide guidelines for surveillance after surgery for renal cell carcinoma (RCC). In a recent study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Mayo Clinic researchers assess the ability of the guidelines to capture RCC recurrences after surgery when abiding by the prescribed protocols.

By Kelley Luedke • March 11, 2015

Mayo Clinic researchers conducted a recent study in Gastroenterology to investigate whether gut-derived murine stem cells for interstitial cells of Cajal could mitigate experimental colitis.

By Kelley Luedke • March 4, 2015

Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) with rhabdoid differentiation is thought to portend a poor prognosis, similar to RCC with sarcomatoid differentiation. Mayo Clinic researchers reviewed a large series of patients with grade 4 RCC to determine the differential effects of rhabdoid and sarcomatoid differentiation on patient outcome.

By Kelley Luedke • February 25, 2015

Measurement of sex steroids, particularly testosterone and estradiol, is important for diagnosis or management of a host of conditions. Mayo Clinic researchers summarize why and how liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) is increasingly replacing other methodologies for measurement of testosterone and estradiol.

By Kelley Luedke • February 23, 2015

Detection of Histoplasma capsulatum urine antigen (UAg) is among the most sensitive and rapid means to diagnose histoplasmosis. In a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, Mayo Clinic researchers analyzed the IMMY analyte specific reagents for detection of Histoplasma galactomannan.

By Kelley Luedke • February 18, 2015