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Breakthroughs Podcast

Listen to the people behind the science.

Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine is a research-intensive medical school that fosters powerful collaborations on a thriving academic medical campus. We are driven by our mission to transform the practice of medicine and profoundly impact human health beyond the individual patient. We believe better answers only come from discovery.

Recent Podcasts

Cover image for episode 25

Leading Pediatric Obesity Research with Justin Ryder, PhD

Northwestern Medicine scientists are at the forefront of research investigating the most effective ways of treating obesity in children and teens and improving their access to care.

In this episode, Justin Ryder, PhD, a clinical and translational obesity scientist at Feinberg, talks about the use of new GLP-1–based medications for childhood obesity and his work on several NIH-funded projects focused on understanding how pediatric obesity impacts chronic disease risk and how biology drives weight regain. 

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Cover image for episode 24

Discovering New ALS Therapeutic Avenues with Evangelos Kiskinis, PhD

An estimated 32,000 Americans are currently living with ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that attacks motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord.

Northwestern investigators have uncovered novel cellular mechanisms involved in two types of genetic ALS that might lead to future targeted therapies. Evangelos Kiskinis, PhD, shares insights on these findings recently published in Science Advances and Cell Reports. 

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Pursuing Deeper Understanding of Inflammation with Murali Prakriya, PhD

Inflammation is a common feature of many diseases and Northwestern Medicine investigators have identified how a calcium channel contributes to inflammation in the brain and lungs. This could aid in finding new types of therapeutics for inflammation-related diseases and conditions. In this episode, Murali Prakriya, PhD, discusses the evolution of this groundbreaking research in ion channels as well as his latest findings published in Nature Communications.

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Partnering with Libraries to Address Teen Mental Health with Ashley Knapp, PhD, and Robert Simmons, MA

Teens are reporting struggles with their mental health at unprecedented rates, but resources to help these young people deal with anxiety or depression can be difficult to access. 

In this episode, Ashley Knapp, PhD, assistant professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Robert Simmons, MA, director of social services and public safety at Oak Park Public Library, discuss an innovative community partnership between Northwestern Medicine investigators and a Chicagoland library and how it could be a model for future health interventions.  

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Cover image for episode 21

Engineering Bacteria to Monitor and Treat Disease with Arthur Prindle, PhD

Thanks to advancements in synthetic biology, scientists are now engineering bacterial communities with the goal of using these cells to monitor and treat diseases. In this episode, Arthur Prindle, PhD, explains how his lab is reprogramming bacteria that may be used in the future to detect disease and deliver therapeutics for many different conditions, including cancer, diabetes and inflammatory bowel disease.

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Cover image for episode 20

Strengthening T-Cell Therapy for Solid Tumor Cancers with Jaehyuk Choi, MD, PhD

A new study published in the journal Nature details breakthrough T-cell immunotherapy research from Northwestern Medicine. In this episode, Jaehyuk Choi, MD, PhD, senior author of the paper, explains how a gene mutation found in T-cells of patients with lymphoma could hold the key to a potent cancer-fighting immunotherapy for solid tumor cancers, which account for 90 percent of all cancers. 

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Past Breakthroughs Podcasts

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Continuing Medical Education Credit

Physicians who listen to this podcast may claim continuing medical education credit after listening to an episode of this program.

Target Audience

Academic/Research, Multiple specialties

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this activity, participants will be able to:

  1. Identify the research interests and initiatives of Feinberg faculty.
  2. Discuss new updates in clinical and translational research.
Accreditation Statement

The Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation Statement

The Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine designates this Enduring Material for a maximum of 0.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

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