Dynamic Human Environmental Exposome Revealed by Longitudinal Personal Monitoring
Stanford scientists have measured the human “exposome,” or the particulates, chemicals and microbes that individually swaddle us all, in unprecedented detail
2018 Study Highlights
Human exposome, including biotic/abiotic exposures, is vast, diverse, and dynamic
Human exposome is influenced by environmental and spatial/lifestyle variables
People can have distinct personalized exposomes, even when geographically close
Human- and environment-related exposures constitute the human exposome cloud
2018 Paper Abstract
Human health is dependent upon environmental exposures, yet the diversity and variation in exposures are poorly understood.
We developed a sensitive method to monitor personal airborne biological and chemical exposures and followed the personal exposomes of 15 individuals for up to 890 days and over 66 distinct geographical locations.
We found that individuals are potentially exposed to thousands of pan-domain species and chemical compounds, including insecticides and carcinogens. Personal biological and chemical exposomes are highly dynamic and vary spatiotemporally, even for individuals located in the same general geographical region. Integrated analysis of biological and chemical exposomes revealed strong location-dependent relationships. Finally, construction of an exposome interaction network demonstrated the presence of distinct yet interconnected human- and environment-centric clouds, comprised of interacting ecosystems such as human, flora, pets, and arthropods.
Overall, we demonstrate that human exposomes are diverse, dynamic, spatiotemporally-driven interaction networks with the potential to impact human health..
We are bombarded by thousands of diverse species and chemicals, ncbi, stanford.edu.
Dynamic Human Environmental Exposome Revealed by Longitudinal Personal Monitoring, cell.
Potential cancer ‘vaccine’ eliminates tumors in mice
Injecting minute amounts of two immune-stimulating agents directly into solid tumors in mice can eliminate all traces of cancer in the animals, including distant, untreated metastases, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.
The approach works for many different types of cancers, including those that arise spontaneously, the study found.
The researchers believe the local application of very small amounts of the agents could serve as a rapid and relatively inexpensive cancer therapy that is unlikely to cause the adverse side effects often seen with bodywide immune stimulation.
Lymphoma patients are being recruited to test the technique in a clinical trial. If successful, Ronald Levy, MD, professor of oncology, believes the treatment could be useful for many tumor types.
2018 Study Abstract
It has recently become apparent that the immune system can cure cancer. In some of these strategies, the antigen targets are preidentified and therapies are custom-made against these targets. In others, antibodies are used to remove the brakes of the immune system, allowing preexisting T cells to attack cancer cells. We have used another noncustomized approach called in situ vaccination. Immunoenhancing agents are injected locally into one site of tumor, thereby triggering a T cell immune response locally that then attacks cancer throughout the body. We have used a screening strategy in which the same syngeneic tumor is implanted at two separate sites in the body. One tumor is then injected with the test agents, and the resulting immune response is detected by the regression of the distant, untreated tumor. Using this assay, the combination of unmethylated CG–enriched oligodeoxynucleotide (CpG)—a Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) ligand—and anti-OX40 antibody provided the most impressive results. TLRs are components of the innate immune system that recognize molecular patterns on pathogens. Low doses of CpG injected into a tumor induce the expression of OX40 on CD4+ T cells in the microenvironment in mouse or human tumors. An agonistic anti-OX40 antibody can then trigger a T cell immune response, which is specific to the antigens of the injected tumor. Remarkably, this combination of a TLR ligand and an anti-OX40 antibody can cure multiple types of cancer and prevent spontaneous genetically driven cancers.
Miscarriage risk rises with BPA exposure, study finds
Women exposed to high levels of bisphenol-A (BPA) early in their pregnancy had an 83 percent greater risk of miscarriage than women with the lowest levels, according to new research.
The scientists said their new study adds to evidence that low levels of the ubiquitous chemical, used to make polycarbonate plastic and found in some food cans and paper receipts, may affect human reproduction.
The study involved 115 pregnant women who had visited a Stanford University fertility clinic within about four weeks of fertilization. The more BPA detected in the women’s blood, the higher their risk of miscarriage, according to the researchers.
However, the new study doesn’t mean BPA causes miscarriages… … more women would need to be tested to see if the results are replicated.
Technique allows for radiation-free detection of tumors
The standard protocol for assessing the extent or development of cancer is through the usage of imaging machines like PET and CT scans, but such machines can expose the patient to loads of excessive radiation that increases their risk of secondary cancers later in life.
Researchers from Stanford University School of Medicine in California tested a new whole-body diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique that could eliminate the exposure risk altogether.