Aired: October 6, 2017

Twinning Against Disease

  • Twinning for Science (12 min.)

    With: Judy Silberg (Virginia Commonwealth University)

    The key to understanding the genes behind diseases is in studying thousands of pairs of twins. Judy Silberg is the director of the Mid-Atlantic Twin Registry, which has been tracking twins on behalf of researchers for decades.

  • An Artificial Pancreas (10 min.)

    With: Dr. Boris Kovatchev & Dr. Sue Brown (University of Virginia)

    Living with Type 1 diabetes often means painful testing and complicated calculations about blood sugar levels. But now, a new artificial pancreas is promising relief — if parents can get their hands on it. Dr. Boris Kovatchev and Dr. Sue Brown are part of a team behind the device.

  • Learning on Medical Simulators (6 min.)

    With: Don Johnson (Northern Virginia Community College)

    “Virtual cadavers” and body fluid simulators are having big impacts on the way medicine is taught – and on patient safety. Don Johnson oversees new hi-tech simulators offering nursing students a chance to get messy with no consequences.

  • 3D Printed Organs (14 min.)

    With: Kenneth Brayman (University of Virginia)

    In 30 years, organ transplants may be taking a back seat to a serum grown from the patient’s own cells and administered to heal the damaged organ.  And those who need new organs will be getting new biological parts from 3-D printers.  That’s the vision of Kenneth Brayman, who heads Transplant Surgery at the University of Virginia.  Brayman discusses recent advances in organ transplantation.

  • Why do we get allergies? (10 min.)

    With: Lawrence Schwartz (Virginia Commonwealth University)

    Allergic reactions to everything from pollen to peanuts are making life miserable for millions.  Lawrence Schwartz explains why our bodies over-react to these seemingly benign substances.  Schwartz was named Outstanding Faculty of 2016 by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia.



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