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University of Miami Health System Starts Clinical Trial to Test Regenerative Treatment for Stroke

The University of Miami Health System is starting a clinical trial to further evaluate the safety and efficacy of an investigational cell therapy for the treatment of chronic motor deficit following an ischemic stroke. The Phase 2b study will be led by Dileep Yavagal, M.D., director of interventional neurology and a member of the Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute at the University of Miami, which is conducting a number of FDA-approved clinical trials in stem cell therapy. Jonathan Jagid, M.D., associate professor of neurological surgery, is the surgical principal investigator of the trial.

“The debilitating effects of an ischemic stroke cause impaired motor skills and decrease a patient’s quality of life significantly,” said Yavagal, who is associate professor of neurology and neurological surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. “Our goal at the Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute is to find viable treatment options to improve serious disabilities from strokes that will one day be used in clinical application. The ACTIsSIMA trial (Allogenic Cell Therapy for Ischemic Stroke to Improve Motor Abilities) will help determine whether this investigational cell therapy is a safe and effective treatment option for chronic stroke.”

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AML cells under the microscope. Source: The website of the National Cancer Institute (

Researchers show p300 protein may suppress leukemia in MDS patients

Scientists at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine have shown that p300, a protein that increases gene expression by attaching acetyl molecules to DNA, may stop myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) from developing into acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The study was published in the journal Leukemia.

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Clockwise from top left, Glen Barber, Ph.D., Ph.D. student Dillon Betancourt, Jeonghyun Ahn, Ph.D., Ph.D. student Nina de Queiroz, and Tianli Xia, Ph.D.

Miller School Researchers Move Forward with Development of Zika Vaccine

Following early-stage development of a vaccine to protect against the Zika virus, a group of researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine has published its initial findings. Now, with new funding, they are moving forward with non-human primate testing and, eventually, phase I human trials.

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Clockwise from top left, Unzila Nayeri, M.D., Michael E. Ivan, M.D., neurosurgery resident Roberto Perez Roman, M.D., Maria Emilse Munoz Pena with baby Santino Michar Pena, and father Michar Pena.

UHealth Surgeons at Jackson Remove Two Brain Tumors from Pregnant Woman

A Florida mother is thanking University of Miami Health System doctors after they removed two benign brain tumors strangling her optic nerves and restored her sight – all while she was six months pregnant.

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The top images show the untreated retina, left, and the effect of anti-Scg-3 therapy to treat retinopathy of prematurity in a mouse model. The bottom images zoom in on the blood vessels.

Study Suggests New Way to Prevent Vision Loss in Diabetics and Premature Babies

Researchers at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, part of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, have identified a new molecule that induces the formation of abnormal blood vessels in the eyes of diabetic mice. The study suggests that inhibiting this molecule may prevent similarly aberrant blood vessels from damaging the vision of not only diabetics, but also premature infants.

Read more about Dr. Li's study »

Tyler Clark receives his envelope from Dean Laurence Gardner, M.D., as wife Brittany and daughters Remi, Mia and Ella await the news.

Miller School Students Celebrate Their Futures at Match Day 2017

Screams of joy extended far beyond the Schoninger Research Quadrangle on Friday as members of the Miller School of Medicine Class of 2017 joined medical students all over the country for Match Day, when they learn where they will spend the next several years of their training.

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