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Imaging the birth of new brain cells

The adult brain was long regarded as being unable to grow new neurons—you were stuck with what you had. We know now that this view is wrong and that the human brain continues to produce new neurons throughout our lives. Read more.

PET imaging serotonin biomarker may predict suicide risk

According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, a suicide occurs every 13 minutes in the US. While there were more than 41,000 known suicides in 2013, an additional 1.3 million adults had attempted suicide in the previous year, and 2.7 million people made a plan to do so. There is a clear need for methods to help identify individuals at risk of suicide, and certain biomarkers could aid in such efforts. Using positron emission tomography (PET) imaging, a study has explored whether serotonin binding potential predicts future suicide attempts and ideation, as well as intent and lethality of suicidal behavior. Read more.

Technique reveals movements of immune cells as they hunt for tumors

A study led by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine has for the first time demonstrated a way to visualize and monitor the behavior of immune cells used to treat cancer patients. The new technique allows researchers to see where immunotherapy cells go as they hunt down tumors in the human body. The imaging technique also reveals whether the immune cells, called T cells, have found a tumor; how many T cells have arrived at the tumor; and whether the T cells are alive. Read more.

Predicting mesothelioma prognosis with PET/CT

There is new evidence that the rate at which mesothelioma tumors metabolize glucose could provide significant prognostic information for mesothelioma patients and their doctors.

Pleural mesothelioma is an especially fast-growing asbestos-linked malignancy. It typically carries a grim prognosis but several factors can impact mesothelioma survival, including tumor characteristics that can only be measured using advanced PET/CT imaging. Now, researchers in Japan say one of those characteristics, known as total lesion glycolysis (TLG), is especially valuable for determining mesothelioma prognosis. Read more.

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