MDI Biological Laboratory

Archive for: Kidney Disease

Visiting Scientist Nishad Jayasundara, Ph.D.: Solving the Riddle of the Mysterious Kidney Ailment Plaguing Farmers Around the World

Solving the Riddle of the Mysterious Kidney Ailment Plaguing Farmers Around the World Environmental toxicologist Nishad Jayasundara, Ph.D., had a problem: his team had identified potentially toxic agricultural chemicals in the drinking water of Sri Lankan farmers suffering from a mysterious kidney disease called chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology or CKDu (so named to…

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Chalk Talks Still Going Strong

The iconic chalkboard got a new coat of paint this year and was ready for action! One of the many Chalk Talk presenters this year, MDIBL student alum and Duke University Assistant Professor Nishad Jayasundara, Ph.D. was a great illustration of how MDIBL can become a full circle experience. Nishad’s presentation was particularly poignant. As an…

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Making a Mouse More Like an Axolotl: How James Godwin’s Discoveries Are Helping Science ‘Pull the Levers of Regeneration’

Science is now inching closer to the answer thanks to new research by MDI Biological Laboratory scientist James Godwin, Ph.D. Following in the laboratory’s tradition of using comparative biology to gain insights into human health, Godwin has compared the molecular mechanisms governing regeneration in a highly regenerative salamander to those in the mouse, which has…

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Research by Iain Drummond, Ph.D., Brings Science Closer to Kidney Replacement Tissue

Each of the body’s approximately one million nephrons, the functional units of the kidney, contains a glomerulus, or a cluster of blood vessels where filtration takes place. The membranes of the glomeruli are lined with specialized cells called podocytes, which have tiny, foot-like projections (podo means “having a foot” in Latin) that protrude into the…

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National Kidney Month

March is #NationalKidneyMonth and we’re celebrating MDI Biological Laboratory’s longstanding and close connection to renal physiology, starting with Homer Smith, D. Sc., (1895-1962) the renowned scientist who made many significant contributions to the field – including identifying how the kidney works. He spent a period of his career at MDIBL and his determination and curiosity…

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New Horizons for the Treatment of Diabetic Complications

Chronic complications of diabetes are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality not only in the western world but worldwide. The metabolic changes caused by diabetes, especially hyperglycemia (high blood sugar levels), can lead over time to damage in the circulation system of the diabetic patient. Subsequent ischemia (inadequate blood supply reaching organs) occurs, as…

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From the Bench to the Bedside – A Long Affair with Diabetic Nephropathy

All my life I have been interested in studying the complications of diabetes. Diabetes has two sides: on the one hand it is a metabolic disorder that effects glucose levels, and the metabolism is treated by medications that lower glucose. On the other hand, over time diabetes leads to damaging changes in the vascular bed,…

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New Tools Enable Cutting Edge Scientific Advances

In addition to new ways of viewing a living cell, we have also invested in new technologies that provide unprecedented ways to characterize all of the different cell types and cell states that are involved in the process of cell development, during the evolution of a disease state, and during regeneration after injury. Known as…

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Seeing Science Fiction Become Reality

As a child growing up in East Millinocket, Maine, Scott MacKenzie was a huge fan of science and science fiction. One of the first magazines he ever subscribed to was Scientific American; one of the first books he ever read was science fiction. Now he can read about the research he has supported as the…

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