Thursday, March 1, 2012

Loyola Scientists' Video Goes Viral

Demonstrates Lab Technique Used to Study Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Alzheimer's Disease, Other Disorders

MAYWOOD, Ill. -- A scientific method paper and video by Loyola researchers has gone viral. The popular video demonstrates a laboratory technique used to study some aspects of mitochondrial dysfunctions in Alzheimer's disease and many other disorders.

It has been accessed by more than 14,000 scientists around the world since it was published in the Journal of Visualized Experiments, a peer-reviewed, PubMed-indexed journal that publishes biological and other scientific research in a video format.

Senior author is Joanna C. Bakowska, DVM, PhD, an assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacology of Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. First author is Dinesh Joshi, PhD.

The 10-minute video is accompanied by an article. In it, the researchers detail how to measure the mitochondrial membrane potential -- the electrical potential across the inner mitochondrial membrane.

Mitochondria are the power producers of the cell. They convert energy into forms that the cell can use. The mitochondria's production of energy is correlated with the membrane potential. An abnormal membrane potential has been demonstrated in several neurological disorders, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. It also is found in many other conditions, including tumors and alcoholic liver disease.

Bakowska and Joshi demonstrated a technique that uses a specific fluorescent dye and live cell imaging to determine the mitochondrial membrane potential. The video provides a step-by-step guide on how to conduct the technique.

"Scientists will be able to do this technique on their own, just after watching the video," Bakowska said.

Their work was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

The Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE) has opened a new frontier in scientific publication. It enables scientists to publish experiments in all dimensions, overcoming the limitations of traditional print journals.

This article in JoVE is free with open access.

"We wanted the article and video to be as widely disseminated as possible," Bakowska said.

About Loyola University Health System

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is a member of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system that includes Loyola University Medical Center (LUMC), located on a 61-acre campus in Maywood, Gottlieb Memorial Hospital (GMH), on a 36-acre campus in Melrose Park, and convenient locations offering primary and specialty care services throughout Cook, Will and DuPage counties. At the heart of LUMC is a 547-licensed-bed hospital that houses the Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine, the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, a Level 1 trauma center, a burn center, a children's hospital, Loyola Outpatient Center, and Loyola Oral Health Center. The campus also is home to Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. The GMH campus includes a 254-licensed-bed community hospital, a Professional Office Building with 150 private practice clinics, an adult day care program, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic health care delivery systems in the nation. It serves people and communities in 22 states from coast to coast with 93 hospitals, and 120 continuing care locations — including home care, hospice, PACE and senior living facilities — that provide nearly 2.5 million visits annually.