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DOE SCIENCE NEWS BY TOPIC: Medicine and Health

DOE sponsors medical research to understand underlying biological, genetic, and molecular processes. This knowledge can then be used to develop new therapies, drugs, and vaccines leading to longer, healthier lives. A leader in the application of science to longstanding and emerging public health threats, DOE also sponsors cutting-edge research designed to create a healthier environment.

DOE began the Human Genome Initiative in 1987—forerunner of the U.S. Human Genome Project (HGP)—and cosponsors the U.S. HGP with the National Institutes of Health. Knowledge, resources, and technologies emanating from the HGP are furthering understanding of genetic influences on human health and have created the field of genomic medicine which is playing an increasingly important role in the diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment of diseases.

DOE pioneered the field of nuclear medicine in the 1940s and continues to advance the field today. Radiotracers and imaging systems discovered, designed, or developed by DOE scientists include radiopharmaceuticals, the gamma camera, and advanced imaging systems such as Positron Emission Tomography (PET), single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), and other CT scanners. Radioactive isotopes produced at DOE laboratories played pivotal roles in nuclear medicine and biology. Additionally, the therapeutic use of radionuclides and their application to physiological studies increased in proportion to the availability of these new substances.

DOE supports basic engineering research to develop innovative medical technology that can be transferred to other agencies for clinical testing or to industry for further commercial development. This multidisciplinary, multi-institutional research addresses high-risk medical technology problems in areas such as medical photonics, smart medical instruments, biomedical imaging, and artificial organs. DOE laser research is intended to advance fundamental areas of laser science relevant to clinical research, particularly for noninvasive medical procedures consistent with the national need to control healthcare costs.

Related Topics:
addiction research, advanced medical instrumentation, advanced imaging catheters, artificial Retina and other imaging devices, breast cancer treatment, breast cancer detection, defending against chemical and biological attacks, diabetes research, disease-susceptibility research, gene research, heart disease research, Human Genome Project, Improving air quality in public buildings, laser medicine, low dose radiation research, magnetic resonance imaging, medical management of biological agent casualties, medical product innovations, neutron radiation therapy, nuclear medical imaging, nuclear medicine research, Positron Emission Tomography (PET), prostate cancer detection and treatment, protecting human subjects, public health data around DOE installations, radiation health effect research, radiochemical cancer treatment research, radiopharmaceutical research, X-ray Angiography Beamline at National Synchrotron Light Source

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