heart disease

Today, many Americans know behaviors, like smoking cigarettes and eating a high fat diet, are significant risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). But for researchers in the 1940s, who were seeing 1 in 2 Americans die from CVD, this knowledge would have been revolutionary. They were facing an epidemic, and had no way to stop it – until the Framingham Heart Study. Celebrating its 70 th anniversary this year, the landmark research study has solved many mysteries about heart disease, given us several groundbreaking treatments, and laid the foundation for our modern understanding of CVD risk factors. In 1948, under the direction of the National Heart Institute, now the National Heart,...
This week, communities across the country are celebrating National Public Health Week . This annual observance recognizes the invaluable work public health professionals contribute to keeping our communities healthy and safe. It also reminds us of the importance of prevention in ensuring the health of our nation. We face a growing burden of chronic disease that is clearly unsustainable. Largely preventable conditions like heart disease, diabetes and stroke are taking too great a toll in lives and investments lost. We must reduce rates of disease and disability if we hope to create a healthier nation. Conducting research that promotes health and prevents disease is an important step in the...
Research!America applauds Senator Tom Harkin for taking bold, decisive action to heal fissures in our nation’€™s research pipeline with legislation that will strengthen the National Institutes of Health (NIH) budget over the next six years. The Accelerate Biomedical Research Act will establish a pathway for sustained growth in the NIH budget. That budget has remained virtually stagnant over the last decade, jeopardizing promising research to combat disease and deflating the aspirations of early career scientists. NIH-funded research fuels the development of lifesaving therapies and treatments, and creates opportunities for public-private partnerships to better understand Alzheimer’€™s,...
January 29, 2014 It’s heartening President Obama chose to emphasize in his speech the significance of federally funded basic research and the need to undo the damage that has been done to it in recent years with deep spending cuts. The president used language the science community epitomizes – he spoke of working for “breakthroughs” and a nation motivated by opportunity. But actions speak louder than words. Congress and the White House must treat research and innovation as the health and economic imperative it has always been and invest in expanding our nation’s research capacity. It bears on business and job creation in both the research and manufacturing sectors; it bears on our nation’s...
Excerpt of an op-ed by American Heart Association President Mariell Jessup, MD, published in the Huffington Post . Countless songs, stories and poems pay tribute to the hurt we suffer from a “broken heart.” The anguish is all too real for the tens of millions of Americans who’ve experienced the pain that occurs when a heart truly fails. My patient, Tony Costanza, is one such person. In 1981, when Tony was 55, he began having trouble breathing. His “huffing and puffing” finally forced him to see a cardiologist. He was diagnosed with congestive heart failure, a life-threatening condition in which a weakened heart can no longer pump oxygen-rich blood through the body. Patients experience...
Excerpt of an op-ed by American Heart Association President Mariell Jessup, MD, published in the Huffington Post . Countless songs, stories and poems pay tribute to the hurt we suffer from a “broken heart.” The anguish is all too real for the tens of millions of Americans who’ve experienced the pain that occurs when a heart truly fails. My patient, Tony Costanza, is one such person. In 1981, when Tony was 55, he began having trouble breathing. His “huffing and puffing” finally forced him to see a cardiologist. He was diagnosed with congestive heart failure, a life-threatening condition in which a weakened heart can no longer pump oxygen-rich blood through the body. Patients experience...
By Endocrine Society President Teresa K. Woodruff, PhD The sad stories flow in each day. A post-doctoral fellow gives up scientific research after 10 years of training. A cancer researcher faces a fruitless job search and expiring visa. The endocrinologist agonizes over letting a long-time lab employee go. Hundreds of these tales are unfolding across the country as the National Institutes of Health struggles to stretch its dwindling budget. Because of sequestration, an NIH budget that barely kept pace with inflation through the 1990s and early 2000s was slashed by another $1.6 billion this fiscal year. If Congress cannot agree on a more balanced approach to budget cuts, another $6.7 billion...
By Endocrine Society President Teresa K. Woodruff, PhD The sad stories flow in each day. A post-doctoral fellow gives up scientific research after 10 years of training. A cancer researcher faces a fruitless job search and expiring visa. The endocrinologist agonizes over letting a long-time lab employee go. Hundreds of these tales are unfolding across the country as the National Institutes of Health struggles to stretch its dwindling budget. Because of sequestration, an NIH budget that barely kept pace with inflation through the 1990s and early 2000s was slashed by another $1.6 billion this fiscal year. If Congress cannot agree on a more balanced approach to budget cuts, another $6.7 billion...
Excerpt of an op-ed by columnist George F. Will, published in The Washington Post. ’€œThe capacity to blunder slightly is the real marvel of DNA. Without this special attribute, we would still be anaerobic bacteria and there would be no music.’€ ’€” Lewis Thomas The pedigree of human beings, Thomas wrote, probably traces to a single cell fertilized by a lightning bolt as the Earth was cooling. Fortunately, genetic ’€œmistakes’€ ’€” mutations ’€” eventually made us. But they also have made illnesses. Almost all diseases arise from some combination of environmental exposures and genetic blunders in the working of DNA. Breast cancer is a family of genetic mutations. The great secret of...
Excerpt of an op-ed by columnist George F. Will, published in The Washington Post. ’€œThe capacity to blunder slightly is the real marvel of DNA. Without this special attribute, we would still be anaerobic bacteria and there would be no music.’€ ’€” Lewis Thomas The pedigree of human beings, Thomas wrote, probably traces to a single cell fertilized by a lightning bolt as the Earth was cooling. Fortunately, genetic ’€œmistakes’€ ’€” mutations ’€” eventually made us. But they also have made illnesses. Almost all diseases arise from some combination of environmental exposures and genetic blunders in the working of DNA. Breast cancer is a family of genetic mutations. The great secret of...

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