Mayo Clinic's patient care activities in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota are
strengthened by advanced programs in medical education and research. This interaction
promotes higher standards of medical care, learning and discovery within the
institution. Following are some of the highlights that occurred throughout Mayo
Mayo Clinic brings together teams of physicians, nurses and other allied health
professionals to diagnose and treat medical problems. Thousands of patients
all Mayo Clinic locations every day for accurate diagnosis and the highest-quality
care. Most patients are treated on an outpatient basis. Most patients make their
appointments themselves -- in most cases, a doctor's referral is
not necessary. Here are the highlights for 2006:
- Mayo Clinic collaborated with Gamma Medica and GE Healthcare to develop
a diagnostic device that is sensitive enough to detect breast tumors as tiny
as one-fifth of an inch in diameter. The new technique, molecular breast imaging,
uses a dual-head gamma camera system to obtain images that, unlike mammography
images, are not affected by dense breast tissue.
- A Mayo Clinic team developed a new medical device that helps patients control
their breathing when undergoing computed tomographic (CT) fluoroscopy-guided
biopsies. The Interactive Breath-hold Control -- the first medical device
of its kind -- allows physicians to more rapidly and accurately diagnose
patients, reducing the need for a more invasive surgical biopsy.
- Mayo Clinic Cancer Center researchers (epidemiologists) found that a radical
prostatectomy can be a safe option for some men over 80 years old. While some
surgeries are traditionally not offered for patients over a certain age, researchers
suggest that age should not be the deciding factor when considering treatment
- Cardiologists at Mayo Clinic devised a new strategy to improve the effectiveness
and safety of heart stents, which are used to open narrowed blood vessels
and have been the recent subject of clotting concerns. The novel approach
is based on magnetizing healing cells from the patient's blood so the cells
are quickly drawn to magnetically coated stents.
- In October, Mayo Clinic and The American Legacy Foundation announced a
collaboration to bring together the expertise of Mayo Clinic's Nicotine Dependence
Center and The American Legacy Foundation's public health and marketing acumen
to help smokers who want to quit.
- Mayo Clinic radiology researchers developed a new technique for using magnetic
resonance imaging (MRI) to accurately measure the hardness or elasticity of
the liver. Initial tests show this technology -- MR Elastography (MRE)
-- holds great promise for detecting liver fibrosis, a common condition
that can lead to incurable cirrhosis if not treated in time.
- Mayo Clinic hosted a cardiac screening event in Arizona for retired NFL
players as part of a national initiative by the Living Heart Foundation and
the National Football League Players Association. It was held to raise awareness
of potential heart disease related to body mass.
- Mayo Clinic ear, nose and throat surgeons began using angioplasty --
a technique long used to open clogged arteries -- as a minimally invasive
option to help open sinuses in patients who require more than just medicine.
The new outpatient procedure, called balloon sinuplasty, alleviates symptoms
of sinusitis, an inflammation of the sinus cavities usually due to infection.
- Mayo hosted the Mayo Clinic National Symposium on Health Care Reform, which
brought together leaders from academia, business, government, health care,
media and patient advocacy to discuss real solutions for health care reform.
The symposium was designed as a first step in a nationwide, long-term initiative
to help shape the future of health care.
- His Holiness The Dalai Lama, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and religious and
secular leader, visited Mayo Clinic. He spoke to patients and staff about
practices that encourage a peaceful mind, as well as positive ways to live
during difficult times.
Biomedical research at Mayo Clinic includes outstanding programs in laboratory
science, clinical research and population studies -- all of which
lead to new treatments and a better understanding of disease. This coordinated
effort helps Mayo quickly translate research discoveries into better care for
patients. Most Mayo medical staff participate in research activities in addition
to their medical practice. Here are the highlights for 2006:
- A Mayo Clinic researcher discovered a target in malaria-
carrying mosquitoes that may aid in development
of pesticides that are toxic to some mosquito species but
not harmful to mammals. The findings could offer a safer
and more effective control of mosquito-borne diseases
such as malaria.
- A Mayo Clinic study found that difficulties in the heart's
ability to fi ll with blood are common causes of heart failure.
The study is the first large, community-based study
to clarify this aspect of heart failure. Researchers believe
that as a result of the findings, heart failure can likely be
managed more effectively to identify and treat those at
highest risk of dying from heart disease.
- An international research collaboration led by Mayo
Clinic -- one of the largest studies of its kind -- found
strong evidence that a genetic risk factor may account
for 3 percent of Parkinson's disease cases. The study
provides evidence that variations in the alpha-synuclein
gene contribute to Parkinson's risk across several populations
- Mayo Clinic, in collaboration with GE Healthcare,
began a new program for clinical development of high field magnetic resonance
imaging (MRI) of the abdomen,
heart, breast and musculoskeletal system using a new,
state-of-the-art 3T MR system. The new MR system was
installed in Mayo's Body MRI Advanced Development
Unit in Rochester.
- In October, InNexus Biotechnology, a publicly held
company, moved into space in the Mayo Clinic Collaborative
Research Building on the Mayo Clinic campus
in Arizona. This first-of-its-kind facility joins multiple
strategic partners under one roof to focus on developing
and supporting medical research and education.
- Mayo Clinic researchers, working with colleagues
in Germany, devised a multilevel safety feature for viruses
used to treat cancer, making cancer-killing viruses
more specific to cancer tumor cells and improving the
therapeutic effectiveness of viruses. They did this by
engineering a modified measles virus that turns on only
in the presence of secretions specific to malignant cancer
cells. This is a key advance because it provides a way to
design a therapeutic virus that is safe, stable and that reliably
targets and kills cancer cells.
- A study led by Mayo Clinic demonstrated that mild
cognitive impairment, a memory disorder considered a
strong early predictor of Alzheimer's disease, not only
results in behavioral symptoms but also structural changes
that can be identified in the brain. The study is one of
the first autopsy studies of mild cognitive impairment.
- The National Institutes of Health selected Mayo Clinic
as one of the first recipients of its new Clinical and Translational
Science Award. Mayo will receive $72 million over
nearly five years. Mayo will use the award to establish the
new Mayo Clinic Center for Clinical and Translational
Research. The award program is designed to transform
clinical and translational research so that new treatments
can be developed more efficiently and delivered more
quickly to patients.
- Mayo Clinic and the Arizona Parkinson's Disease
Consortium were named co-recipients of a $2.8 million,
three-year grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation,
intended to support research for diagnosis and treatment
of Parkinson's disease.
Mayo Clinic offers educational programs and training opportunities on its three
campuses to those pursuing careers in medicine, research and the health sciences.
The College of Medicine at Mayo Clinic includes five schools. Here are the
highlights for 2006:
- Mayo Clinic and the U.S. Department of Health and
Human Services, on behalf of the Indian Health Service,
formed a collaboration to work together to seek ways
to reduce the burden of cancer and other diseases in
American Indian and Alaska Native communities. This
national agreement is the most comprehensive between
the Indian Health Service and another health care organization.
- All 36 Mayo Medical School seniors who participated
in the 2006 National Residency Matching Program were
successful in matching with a residency program. Mayo
School of Graduate Medical Education reported that 98.5
percent of its residency training positions were filled.
- Mayo Clinic hosted local high school students for its
second annual Doc Camp in Arizona, in which students
spend time with Mayo physicians and learn about careers
- Through a partnership with the University of North
Florida, Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville hosted the Minorities
in Medicine Symposium for promising 10th grade students
from schools in the area. Students and their parents attended
a session to improve test taking skills, received
information on completing scholarship applications, and
were encouraged to take more rigorous courses.