Latinos, Help Researchers Understand How Social Factors Affect Rheumatoid Arthritis!


RA doc

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can be debilitating and place a significant burden on patients, their families, employers, and the government. While genetics and health inequities do play a role in the development and progression of RA, social issues, such as lack of family and friend support, can also play a role in the progression of the disease. Researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center want to learn more about how social and genetic factors affect RA in Latinos, who often face social issues when it comes to health. You can help by participating in a clinical trial no matter where you live in the US! Rheumatoid Arthritis Study Qualifications To be eligible for this clinical trial, you must be age 18 or older and of Hispanic/Latino heritage. You may ...

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Study: Phase 1 Cancer Treatment Clinical Trials May Offer More Benefits Than in Past


clinical trials phase 1

Clinical trials are studies with volunteers that help researchers learn how to slow, manage, and treat different diseases. There are four phases of clinical trials that each help scientists answer different questions. Phase 1 clinical trials are the first step in testing a new treatment in people. They focus on evaluating the safety, side effects, best dose, and timing of a new treatment, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Phase 1 clinical trials usually include a small number of patients who have not been helped by other treatments. In the past, participants in phase 1 trials for cancer treatment generally had low tumor response rates. And, because phase 1 trials are focused on assessing safety of treatments, doctors have hesitated to refer patients to these ...

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Help Researchers Learn More about Preventing Dementia, Disability, and Disease


Patient and doctor

If you’re age 75 or older, you should know about PREVENTABLE. PREVENTABLE – the Pragmatic Evaluation of events And Benefits of Lipid-lowering – is a clinical trial to help researchers understand if taking a statin, a drug commonly used to lower cholesterol in younger adults, is helpful for older adults, specifically when it comes to maintaining health by preventing dementia, disability, and heart disease. “We really don’t know how these drugs work in older adults,” according to the research team at UT Health San Antonio, including Dr. Sara Espinoza, principal investigator for the local study site. “Most, if not all, of the studies of statins have been done in much younger people, in their 50s and 60s, but studies in adults over 75 are rare.” The national study is ...

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Go Fish! Study Connects Omega-3s to Brain Health Improvement at Midlife


Omega-3 options

Consuming cold-water fish and other sources of omega-3 fatty acids could preserve brain health and enhance cognition in middle age, according to a recent study led by researchers at UT Health San Antonio and the Framingham Heart Study. “Our results, albeit exploratory, suggest that higher omega-3 fatty acid concentrations are related to better brain structure and cognitive function in a predominantly middle-aged cohort free of clinical dementia,” according to the study. What Are Omega-3s? Omega-3s are a family of essential fatty acids that play an important role in the human body. “Although evidence is mixed, studies indicate that omega-3 fatty acids can protect against all sorts of illnesses, including breast cancer, depression, ADHD, and various inflammatory diseases,” ...

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UNITE Initiative Responds to Dr. Amelie Ramirez’s Comment on Racial Equity, Diversity


ndorse Dr. Amelie Ramirez’s Comment on Racial Equity and Diversity in Research!

The National Institutes of Health's UNITE initiative has responded to over 1,100 comments, including one from Dr. Amelie Ramirez of Salud America! and UT Health San Antonio, calling for racial equity and diversity in research. UNITE sought comments in spring 2021. Ramirez submitted a comment—endorsed by 541 Salud America! members—that we believe that increasing diversity among research leaders and clinical trial participants will help achieve true health equity, especially for Latinos and others disproportionately impacted by health issues. Based on these comments, the UNITE initiative formulated four priority areas in health disparities and minority health research, the internal NIH workforce, and the external research workforce. "Here at NIH, we saw with fresh eyes the ...

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Is a Clinical Trial Right for Your Child?


Doctor discussing clinical trial

We all want the best for our children. While the thought of enrolling your child in a clinical trial may sound scary, but there are plenty of benefits to trial participation. Some of these benefits include diagnosing, preventing, treating, and sometimes even curing childhood diseases. However, there are some potential risks to trial participation, too. Here’s everything you need to know about enrolling your child in a clinical trial. What is a Clinical Trial? Clinical trials are studies with volunteers that help researchers learn how to slow, manage, and treat different diseases. There are different kinds of clinical trials with different intended purposes. There are also four phases of clinical trials that each help scientists answer different ...

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Help Researchers Learn Rapamycin’s Effects on Heart Health


Rapamycin Heart Health

Rapamycin is a medication approved by the US Food and Drug Administration as an immunosuppressant drug, making it helpful in preventing rejection in organ transplantation. The medication has also been tested in prior studies — like clinical trials, which help researchers learn how to better slow, manage, and treat diseases — as a treatment for cancer and to evaluate its effects on physical and cognitive function and immune health. Now, researchers at UT Health San Antonio are recruiting participants for a study to evaluate Rapamycin’s effects on heart function, heart muscle stiffening, and circulation. Participants will be compensated up to $300 for study completion, which involves five study visits over the course of about two months. Who Can Participate in the Rapamycin ...

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Why Don’t Latinos Enroll in Clinical Trials?


Latinos hesitant to join clinical trials

Clinical trials are the most safe, rigorous way of testing for new and more effective disease treatments. Although Latinos comprise 18.9% of the US population, they make up just 10% of participants in clinical trials run by the National Cancer Institute and 4% of drug trials run by the FDA. This massive underrepresentation of Latinos in clinical trials makes it hard for researchers to develop new treatments for this group, which suffers a heavy burden of cancer, Alzheimer’s, and other diseases. Further, diseases present differently in Latinos than White populations – who traditionally make up most clinical trial participants. For example, Latinos on average present symptoms of Alzheimer’s approximately seven years earlier than other racial and ethnic groups, and are ...

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Help Researchers Find Out How COVID-19 Impacts Brain Health!


Clinical Trial participant

How does COVID-19 affect the brain? Researchers at the Biggs Institute for Alzheimer’s & Neurodegenerative Diseases at UT Health San Antonio are looking for the answer and need your help. Volunteer for the 7T MRI Study of How COVID-19 Affects the Brain! Study volunteers will get an advanced state-of-the-art MRI scan to compare brain imaging of those recovered from COVID-19 to those who have never tested positive for the infection. “This study is to identify the long-term neurological and psychiatric effects of a COVID-19 infection,” according to the Biggs Institute study team, including Drs. Mitzi Gonzales, Gabriel de Erausquin, Sudha Seshadri, Monica Goss, and Mohamed Habes. To volunteer for the 7T MRI Study, contact Vibhuti Patel (210-450-7186), Erin ...

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