With nearly 30 years at Mayo Clinic, Sherri Hawkins has served in a wide range of laboratory-related roles. Beginning as a laboratorian on the bench and now serving as Group Purchasing Organization (GPO) manager, Sherri has been able to unite her two career passions — laboratory testing and business.

By Luci Gens • April 17, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: R0 resection and radiation therapy have been associated with improved overall survival (OS) in patients with thymic carcinoma (TC). Here, we analyzed which subgroups of patients derive the greatest benefit from postoperative radiation therapy (PORT).

By Sarah Jarvis • April 16, 2024

Mayo Clinic Laboratories introduces the Inherited Parkinson’s Disease Gene Panel (Mayo ID: PARDP), a collaborative breakthrough poised to transform Parkinson’s disease diagnosis and treatment. Led by Rodolfo Savica, M.D., Ph.D., and Zhiyv (Neal) Niu, Ph.D., this comprehensive test offers unparalleled insights into Parkinson’s genetics, unveiling novel gene associations and enhancing diagnostic precision through next-generation sequencing. The panel’s capabilities include detecting subtle genetic variations and identifying familial patterns, promising personalized medicine advancements.

By Nicole Holman • April 10, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: Intrathecal delivery of autologous culture-expanded adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (AD-MSC) could be utilized to treat traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI). This Phase I trial ( NCT03308565) included 10 patients with American Spinal Injury Association Impairment Scale (AIS) grade A or B at the time of injury. 

By Sarah Jarvis • April 9, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: Follicular lymphoma (FL) is an indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma of germinal center origin, which presents with significant biologic and clinical heterogeneity. Using RNA-seq on B cells sorted from 87 FL biopsies, combined with machine-learning approaches, we identify 3 transcriptional states that divide the biological ontology of FL B cells into inflamed, proliferative, and chromatin-modifying states, with relationship to prior GC B cell phenotypes.

By Sarah Jarvis • April 2, 2024

Carrie began her career at Mayo Clinic in 2006 as the associate director of the Eisenberg Genomics Education Program. In her current role as a genetic counselor, she employs her skills to educate on genetic test offerings and support MCL’s product management team. Motivated by her family’s experience with a genetic condition, Carrie finds purpose and passion in sparking conversations and fostering understanding about the benefits of genetic testing, striving to make genomics accessible to diverse audiences.

By Nicole Holman • March 20, 2024

Since 1992, cases of colorectal cancer have been on a slow decline, yet 52,550 people died from it in 2023. At Mayo Clinic, a cutting-edge menu of both germline (inherited genetic alterations) and somatic (tumors due to non-inherited genetic alterations) testing are two critical tools helping to improve targeted treatments for colorectal and other common gastrointestinal cancers.

By Chris Bahnsen • March 13, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: C3 glomerulopathy (C3G) is a rare disease resulting from dysregulation of the alternative pathway of complement. C3G includes C3 glomerulonephritis (C3GN) and dense deposit disease (DDD), both of which are characterized by bright glomerular C3 staining on immunofluorescence studies. However, on electron microscopy (EM), DDD is characterized by dense osmiophilic mesangial and intramembranous deposits along the glomerular basement membranes (GBM), while the deposits of C3GN are not dense. Why the deposits appear dense in DDD and not in C3GN is not known. We performed laser microdissection (LCM) of glomeruli followed by mass spectrometry (MS) in 12 cases each of DDD, C3GN, and pretransplant kidney control biopsies.

By Sarah Jarvis • March 12, 2024

Dr. Linda Hasadsri’s firsthand encounter with the genetic tests she’s helped develop has provided rare insight into testing quality and implications, enhancing their ability to advocate for the value of testing and infusing their work with deep empathy.

By Robin Huiras-Carlson • March 11, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: Variants of uncertain significance (VUSs) in BRCA2 are a common result of hereditary cancer genetic testing. While more than 4,000 unique VUSs, comprised of missense or intronic variants, have been identified in BRCA2, the few missense variants now classified clinically as pathogenic or likely pathogenic are predominantly located in the region encoding the C-terminal DNA binding domain (DBD). We report on functional evaluation of the influence of 462 BRCA2 missense variants affecting the DBD on DNA repair activity of BRCA2 using a homology-directed DNA double-strand break repair assay.

By Sarah Jarvis • March 5, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: Both targeted therapies and immunotherapies provide benefit in resected Stage III melanoma. We hypothesized that the combination of targeted and immunotherapy given prior to therapeutic lymph node dissection (TLND) would be tolerable and drive robust pathologic responses. 

By Sarah Jarvis • February 27, 2024

Recognizing the powerful role genes can play in diagnosing illness and guiding treatment, the Division of Laboratory Genetics and Genomics at Mayo Clinic spearheaded a testing expansion, implementing and upgrading more than 60 advanced sequencing and biochemical assays in 2023 and planning for even more this year.

By Robin Huiras-Carlson • February 21, 2024

This week's research roundup feature: Patients with dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) may have Alzheimers disease (AD) pathology that can be detected by plasma biomarkers. Our objective was to evaluate plasma biomarkers of AD and their association with positron emission tomography (PET) biomarkers of amyloid and tau deposition in the continuum of DLB, starting from prodromal stages of the disease.

By Sarah Jarvis • February 20, 2024