Minerva Minerva

Minerva

BMJ 2001; 323 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.323.7312.582 (Published 08 September 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;323:582

Transplantation of the pancreas in patients with diabetes who are undergoing kidney transplantation leads to an improvement in their hypertension (Circulation 2001;104:563-9). This improvement is not seen in patients when only the kidneys are transplanted. The report argues that these results—in 111 patients undergoing double transplantation—underscore the importance of the metabolic changes associated with diabetes in causing hypertension in patients with diabetic nephropathy

Occult metastatic cells in the bone marrow of patients treated for carcinoma of the breast are (not surprisingly) associated with a worse prognosis (Cancer 2001;92:46-53). Bone marrow biopsies may prove to be useful both in determining which women are most likely to benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy and in monitoring the response to treatment.

Diagnosing viral infections by listening is an interesting idea. Quartz crystals vibrate when placed in magnetic fields. When virus particles are attached to the crystal via antibodies and the vibrations are amplified, there comes a point when the virus ruptures away from the crystal. The crystal doubles as a miniature microphone and detects the rupturing event. The inventors say their system can detect a single virus in a drop of …

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