Ten Discoveries at Oregon State

By Lee Anna Sherman

With the help of animals, Oregon State scientists have made important discoveries in human health (see “The Ethic of Care”). “These findings would not have been possible relying only on cell cultures or experimenting with yeast and bacteria,” says pharmacy researcher Mark Leid. His lab created and used genetically modified mice to discover important roles for the regulatory protein Ctip2 in several organ systems. Other findings include:

ALS Genetic and chemical interactions are being revealed in patients with Lou Gehrig’s disease. (Rats)

Fetal Developmen Cancer-fighting nutrients taken in pregnancy protect fetuses from carcinogens. (Mice)

Head and Neck Cancers These cancers contain a five-fold spike in the protein Ctip2, suggesting new tools for detection. (Mice)

Melanoma A protein called RXR-alpha in some skin cells can protect pigment cells from damage. (Mice)

Obesity A chemical in hops, xanthohumol, reduces body weight and lowers fasting plasma glucose. (Rats)

Parasitic Infection. A parasite called microsporidia, which can infect humans, can be transmitted via eggs. (Zebrafish)

Spinal Cord Injury Vitamin E given intravenously within four hours of spinal cord injury increases survival and recovery. (Rats)

Tooth Ename. Discovery of a tooth enamel-regulating protein could allow teeth to be grown in labs. (Mice)

Toxicology The chemical BPA, used in plastic food containers, causes neurobehavioral changes. (Zebrafish)

Tuberculosis Development of an oral therapy for TB and of an aerosol for treating bacterial lung diseases could lead to vaccines. (Mice)