Powerful new tool may enable opportunities for biological understanding, clinical interventions “In my clinical practice, I often encounter families devastated by a sudden and unexpected death. This finding indicates that genetic testing — if made widely available — can provide a way to identify high-risk individuals currently flying under the radar. If identified, we have a variety of approaches proven to prevent disease onset available within routine clinical practice,” said Khera.In addition to Khera, the research team was co-led by Sekar Kathiresan, CEO of Verve Therapeutics; Anthony Philippakis, cardiologist and chief data officer at the Broad Institute; and Christine Albert, chair of cardiology in the Smidt Heart Institute at Cedars-Sinai. Genome editing with precision Each year, sudden cardiac death affects 220,000 U.S. adults, most of whom have no prior symptoms of a heart issue.By identifying rare DNA variants that substantially increase risk of sudden cardiac death, researchers led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard have laid the foundation for efforts to identify individuals who could benefit from prevention strategies before they experience symptoms.The scientists also determined that such variants are present in approximately 1 percent of asymptomatic adults — corresponding to 3 million people in the United States.The findings are presented at the Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association and published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.The authors performed gene sequencing in 600 adult-onset sudden cardiac death cases and 600 controls who remained healthy — the largest such study performed to date and first to use a control group. A clinical geneticist reviewed all of the DNA variants identified, classifying 15 as clinically important pathogenic variants.“Strikingly, all 15 of these pathogenic variants were in sudden cardiac death cases, with none in controls,” said lead author Amit V. Khera, cardiologist and associate director of the Precision Medicine Unit at MGH’s Center for Genomic Medicine and the Broad Institute’s Cardiovascular Disease Initiative. The prevalence of a pathogenic variant was found to be 2.5 percent in cases and 0 percent in controls.Next, the investigators studied the genes of 4,525 middle-aged adults without any signs of heart disease, finding that 41 (0.9 percent) carried a pathogenic variant. These individuals have been followed for more than 14 years, and those who inherited a pathogenic variant had a more than three times greater risk of dying from cardiovascular causes. “Our hope is to empower our patients to better understand, predict, and prevent bad health outcomes — especially irreversible tragedies such as sudden cardiac death — using genetic information.” — Amit V. Khera Calculating genetic risk for obesity Prime editing system offers wide range of versatility in human cells, correcting disease-causing genetic variations Related Based on these results, Khera and colleagues plan to conduct genetic-sequencing tests for thousands of adult patients at MGH and affiliated hospitals who volunteered for a research program designed to understand how genetic and environmental factors impact risk of important diseases. They aim to find the 1 percent of individuals with rare genetic variants linked to heart disease, and offer tailored prevention programs in a Cardiovascular Genetics Program or a new MGH Preventive Genomics Clinic that Khera is co-leading and is embedded within primary care.“Our hope is to empower our patients to better understand, predict, and prevent bad health outcomes — especially irreversible tragedies such as sudden cardiac death — using genetic information,” said Khera.Funding support was provided by an institutional grant from the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard (BroadIgnite, to Khera), grant 1K08HG010155 from the National Human Genome Research Institute (to Khera), a Hassenfeld Scholar Award from Massachusetts General Hospital (to Khera), an institutional grant from the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard (BroadNext10, to Philippakis and Kathiresan), and a sponsored research agreement from IBM Research (to Khera and Philippakis).
Former Sugababes singer Jade Ewen and West End alum Dean John-Wilson are in talks to star in London’s Aladdin as Princess Jasmine and the titular character, respectively. According to the Daily Mail, they could join the previously announced Trevor Dion Nicholas as the genie in the production, which is scheduled to begin performances on May 27, 2016 and will officially open on June 9 at the Prince Edward Theatre.Ewen is best known for her work with British pop group the Sugababes; a former protege of Andrew Lloyd Webber, she is currently appearing in the London production of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s In the Heights. Wilson was most recently seen in the U.K. National Theatre’s production of off-Broadway smash hit Here Lies Love; additional stage credits include From Here to Eternity.Adapted from the 1992 Disney animated film, Aladdin is the story of a street urchin who uses the help of a magic Genie to win the heart of Princess Jasmine. Directed and choreographed by Casey Nicholaw, the production features a book by Chad Beguelin, music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Beguelin, Tim Rice and the late Howard Ashman.Aladdin continues to run on Broadway at the New Amsterdam Theatre. The production officially opened on March 20, 2014, starring Adam Jacobs as Aladdin, Courtney Reed as Jasmine, James Monroe Iglehart as the Genie and Jonathan Freeman as Jafar. View Comments
Two of hardest hit communities badly flooded during last weekend’s heavy rainfallBy Edwin M. Fayia IIITwo days of heavy rainfall in Monrovia, Paynesville and other parts of Montserrado County last weekend left many families homeless as their houses and surroundings went underwater.In a tour of affected communities in Paynesville and Monrovia, scores of houses and makeshift structures were seen trapped under water.Every year in many parts of the county, scores of residents and their properties are affected by flooding, with the most affected being those built in flood prone areas in or near swamps and creeks.The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), at various workshops, has warned residents and property owners that flood prone areas are not suitable for building houses.A former official of the EPA, Darlington B. Cyrus, told the Daily Observer on Saturday that unless Liberians can make up their minds to stop building houses and other structures in low lying areas, their woes will continue every rainy season.However, to a great extent such warnings have fallen on deaf ears, as many Liberians continue to build their houses where heavy flooding occurs every year.According to officials of the Public Works Ministry, most of the flooding occurring in Monrovia and Paynesville are also due to clogged drains, resulting from human activities such as dumping of waste into the drainage system.The heavy weekend rains affected several communities including, but not limited to the former Omega Navigation Station, Coca-Cola Factory, A.B. Tolbert Road, Randall Street and Waterside.Others were Buzzy Quarters, United Nations Drive, Soniewein, Carey Street and Slipway.At the Red Light Market last Saturday, motor and other mechanized vehicles, wheelbarrow pushers, were all stranded due to the flooding.The narrow bridge that connects upper Pipeline Road to the business hub of Red Light Market was also flooded, with hundreds of petty traders stranded for over twelve hours.Residents of the affected communities are meanwhile, appealing to the Ministry of Public Works to help them fight the perennial flooding.It may be recalled that in 2015, Public Works Minister Gyude Moore told a team of Daily Observer reporters that one of his top priorities was to clean most of Monrovia’s drainage systems. Efforts have also been made in the past to ensure that communities work together to keep the drains near their communities clean and free of debris, especially before the start of the rainy season.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
A Corentyne, Berbice family is calling for justice after the employer of 30-year-old Nandkumar Heeram allegedly beat him following a misunderstanding.The injured man, also known as “Ravi”, of Middle Walk, Friendship Village, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) was beaten at about 19:30h on Saturday evening.According to the injured man’s sister, she received a telephone call indicating thatNandkumar Heeramsomething had hit her brother.Guyana Times was told that Heeram was called by his employer following a dispute and as he approached, he was assaulted with a piece of wood.In an attempt to evade the incoming blow, he spun around and was hit behind the head. Additionally, he was hit to the nose.His sister said when she arrived at the hospital and tried to speak to her brother, he was unable to respond. She also said that at that time, he was bleeding profusely from his nose.A report was made to the Police and the suspect was arrested. However, the employer was subsequently released.However, on Monday when the father of three was approached by the media, he acknowledged that some time ago there was a misunderstanding between himself and his employer.Efforts to contact the Divisional Commander for a comment on the matter proved futile.
CANYON COUNTRY – A man suspected of robbing a liquor store in Canyon Country has been arrested, a sheriff’s lieutenant said Wednesday. David Glenn Lamson, 41, was booked for investigation of the robbery of H&J Liquor at 18248 Soledad Canyon Road at 6:40 p.m. Tuesday, said sheriff’s Lt. Brenda Cambra. The robber had in his waistband what appeared to be a stun gun though no weapon was found, Cambra said. He stole $400 after a struggle with the person behind the counter, she said. The suspect was being held on $100,000 bail. – Daily News 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!