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Monthly Archives: January 2016

With Goal of Testing Therapies, Monkeys Engineered to Mimic Autism-Like Behaviors

New York, NY, January 26, 2016The New York Times reports that scientists in China have genetically engineered monkeys so that they exhibit behaviors similar to autism, with a goal of testing potential therapies on the animals in hopes that their resemblance to humans will yield more answers about the disorder.

The scientists found that the monkeys showed “very similar behaviors related to human autism patients, including repetitive behaviors, increased anxiety and, most importantly, defects in social interactions,” said Zilong Qiu, a leader of the research at the Institute of Neuroscience at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shanghai. Continue reading

PhRMA: 2015 Was a Banner Year for Personalized Medicine

 Precision Medicine 9 PillWashington DC, January 25, 2016 — According to Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), 2015 was a record year for personalized medicine approvals, according to a new analysis from the Personalized Medicine Coalition (PMC).

Writing on PhRMA’s blog The Catalyst, PhRMA’s Emma Van Hook reports that this news confirms the growing role of personalized medicine as an approach to treatment that can improve outcomes for patients and also create important efficiencies in the health care system.

Personalized medicine is an emerging field of medicine that uses diagnostic tools to identify specific biological markers to help assess which medical treatments and procedures will be best for each patient.  Personalized medicine also takes into account patients’ medical history, circumstances and values in developing targeted treatment and prevention plans. Continue reading

New Report: STEM Majors Will Earn Highest Starting Salaries in 2016

STEM 1Bethlehem, PA, January 25, 2016 ― Graduates from the STEM disciplines are expected to receive the highest starting salaries among Class of 2016 bachelor’s degree graduates, according to a new report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE).

NACE’s Winter 2016 Salary Survey report indicates that the overall average salary for bachelor’s degree graduates earning engineering degrees is projected to be $64,891, up 3 percent over the average salary projection of $62,998 for engineering graduates from the Class of 2015. Continue reading

Thomas Edison State College Becomes Thomas Edison State University

Thomas Edison UNIVTrenton, NJ, January 24, 2016 — Thomas Edison State College, New Jersey’s only institution dedicated exclusively to serving adult students, is now Thomas Edison State University.

In December, New Jersey Secretary of Higher Education Rochelle Hendricks granted university status to Thomas Edison State College.  At its December board meeting, the College’s Board of Trustees approved a resolution authorizing the institution to change its name to Thomas Edison State University.

The change became official on Dec. 21.

Continue reading

Opinion: Ironworkers President on ‘The Link Between Innovation and Job Creation’; Calls on Congress to Protect Innovation

Eric Dean -- Ironworkers and PILMAWashington, DC, January 23, 2016Eric Dean, general president of the Ironworkers International and chairman of the Pharmaceutical Industry Labor-Management Association (PILMA), writes in The Hill:

“As the general president of the Ironworkers union, representing 130,000 skilled craft workers in North America, one of my most important responsibilities is to help protect the jobs of highly skilled workers.

“The men and women who are members of my union, Ironworkers International, have undergone rigorous apprenticeship training. They have dedicated long nights, days and weekends to hone their craft and earn the right to return to the job site the next day.  Continue reading

Opinion: NJAMHAA CEO: Don’t Let Congress Alter Medicare Part D Benefit

Debra Wentz CROPNew Brunswick, NJ, January 22, 2016 ― Debra L. Wentz, CEO of the New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies (NJAMHAA), writes in the Asbury Park Press (January 6, 2016):

More than 1 million New Jersey residents could see reduced access to life-saving medicines if Congress proceeds with a plan that would fundamentally alter Part D, Medicare’s prescription drug benefit.

Some lawmakers want to allow the federal government to interfere in Part D. But, to achieve the promised savings, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office warns that the government would have to restrict seniors’ access to needed medicines. Such a move will harm seniors’ health. Continue reading

Johnson & Johnson Teams with Rutgers to Advance Women’s Education in STEM Fields

STEM WomenNew Brunswick, NJ, January 22, 2016 ― Rutgers University-New Brunswick Honors College is one of 10 partners worldwide selected by Johnson & Johnson to help increase the number of undergraduate women majoring in the fields of science, technology, engineering, math, manufacturing and design (STEM2D).

Johnson & Johnson also entered into agreements with the National Center for Women and Information Technology and eight other leading academic centers, including Caltech, Harvey Mudd College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Instituto Tecnológico de Aeronáutica (ITA – Brazil), Rhode Island School of Design, Spelman College, The University of Tokyo, and The University of Limerick. Continue reading

Rutgers-Camden and Rowan Research Collaborate to Accelerate Fight Against Diabetes

Rutgers-Camden and Rowan UCamden, NJ, January 22, 2016 ― Researchers from Rutgers University–Camden and Rowan University are collaborating on an interdisciplinary project to accelerate the fight against diabetes and use untapped resources to improve treatment and perhaps even cure the disease.

The joint Rowan University/Rutgers–Camden Board of Governors approved a $30,000 research grant for the project.

“This valuable collaboration between South Jersey’s two most prominent universities has the real potential to change lives,” says Kris Kolluri, CEO of the Rowan University/Rutgers–Camden Board of Governors, an organization that promotes advancements in the life sciences in southern New Jersey.  Continue reading

Drugmakers Call for Incentives to Develop Antibiotics to Fight ‘Superbugs’

Davos, Switzerland, January 21, 2016 ― Andrew Pollack reports in The New York Times that more than 80 pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies from around the world are calling for new economic models to spur development of badly needed new antibiotics and to fight the rising global threat of drug-resistant “superbugs.”

In a declaration that is being released today at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the companies say that governments must work with companies to fight the problem of antimicrobial resistance, in which many germs are no longer killed by common antibiotics and in some cases even by last-ditch options, turning once-treatable infections into life-threatening events. Continue reading

U.S. Senate to Break Up the House’s ’21st Century Cures’ Act

 Capital Dome blue sky - CROPPEDWashington, DC, January 20, 2016 ― Sarah Ferris reports in The Hill that the U.S. Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee on Tuesday announced that it will not take up a major House-passed biomedical research package known as 21st Century Cures Act, dealing a major blow to leaders in the lower chamber.

HELP Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee) said Tuesday that members will vote separately on bills ranging from neurological diseases research to electronic medical records.

The Senate’s strategy for passing bipartisan biomedical research legislation is a far cry from the House, where the Energy and Commerce Committee spent more than a year working on a final package. That legislation overwhelmingly passed on July 10, 2015. Continue reading