News & Resources

January 29, 2019
summer 2015

Congratulations Ashley Margarit! - 2018 Robert E. Wilkens Award Winner

Robert E. Wilkens was an active leader and dedicated advisor for Achieving Cures Together. Upon his passing last September, our organization, his friends, and his family were deeply saddened. Given his commitment to our mission, we felt compelled to honor him and created the Robert E. Wilkens award. Robert had a special intuition for spotting opportunities. He was very successful in his endeavors throughout life, and as a businessman, he had an unrivaled work ethic and a burning passion to learn. Most importantly however, Robert was a loving father and grandfather. He had a big heart for people and was determined and committed to progressing cures and alleviating suffering. He believed in Achieving Cures Together and was beyond generous with his time and treasure. Much of our early success can be attributed to his leadership and generosity. We will be forever grateful for his work as an advisor and supporter and we are humbled to present this award to exemplary members of our community. Grit and determination. Two words to describe Ashley Margarit as she crossed the finish line at the Twin Cities Marathon this past October. Not only did Ashley finish her first marathon on arguably one of the toughest race courses in the country, but she completed the marathon while battling a flare of Ulcerative Colitis. Her determination to finish the race and her commitment to Achieving Cures Together gives us the honor and privilege to recognize Ashley Margarit as the 1st recipient of the Robert E. Wilkens award. Congratulations Ashley, and thank you for your spirit of hard work and perseverance.

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January 28, 2019
summer 2015

Germs in Your Gut Are Talking to Your Brain. Scientists Want to Know What They’re Saying.

The body’s microbial community may influence the brain and behavior, perhaps even playing a role in dementia, autism and other disorders.

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January 8, 2019
summer 2015

NSAID-Altered Microbiome Exacerbates C.diff Infections

Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is the most common hospital-acquired infection in the U.S., and has become a global public health issue. The infection can cause a range of gastrointestinal symptoms, which estimates suggest ultimately result in nearly 30,000 deaths every year in the U.S. alone. While the most significant risk factor for CDI is antibiotic treatment, studies in mice by a team at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine now provide new evidence that connects the use of common nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) with increased severity of CDI. Their results also point to the molecular mechanisms that underpin this link.

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December 3, 2018
summer 2015

Fecal Microbiota Transplant Documentary Coming 2019!

A new documentary film (due to be released early next year) looks at the effect of Fecal Microbiota Transplants (FMT) for a number of diseases including C. diff which has been shown to have a cure rate of 90%! Despite these amazing results, many medical professionals are still unaware of this treatment and its efficacy. Throughout the film, director Saffron Cassaday, who herself has suffered from ulcerative colitis for nearly a decade, interviews several leading researchers and medical experts, including those who are working on different methods for delivering this life-saving treatment. Her investigation takes her down a path she did not expect to travel and enlightens her on the power “poop” has to affect our health, happiness and possibly even our physical appearance. The goal of the film is to raise awareness of this medical breakthrough and the importance of maintaining a healthy gut microbiome in hopes that lives can be saved and the escalation of Super Bugs and Chronic Diseases can be curtailed. Although the film will not be released for several months you can follow the filmmakers and access information about FMT from their website www.designershitdocumentary.com.

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December 3, 2018
summer 2015

Why You Should Be Paying More Attention To Your Gut Microbiome

If you're remotely connected to the world of wellness today, you've probably heard of the microbiome—the mini-ecosystem of microorganisms that make up the human body. In fact, over the last decade, the microbiome has become one of the trendiest areas of biology, and the research has made clear that the microbiome is fundamental to overall health. While the newfound cultural awareness is great, the focus is often misguided. Here’s the thing: the supplement industry has hijacked the conversation with it’s “pill for an ill” ethos.

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December 4, 2017
summer 2015

Exercise can beneficially alter the composition of your gut microbiome

Two new studies led by researchers at the University of Illinois have delivered the first clear evidence that the composition of gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone. Designed to isolate the effects of exercise from other factors that could influence gut bacteria, these dual studies build on an increasing body of evidence affirming the role of exercise in determining the makeup of a person's gut microbiome.

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November 15, 2017
summer 2015

Engineering the gut microbiome with 'good' bacteria may help treat Crohn's disease

Researchers have singled out a bacterial enzyme behind an imbalance in the gut microbiome linked to Crohn's disease. The new study suggests that wiping out a significant portion of the bacteria in the gut microbiome, and then re-introducing a certain type of 'good' bacteria that lacks this enzyme, known as urease, may be an effective approach to better treat these diseases.

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February 17, 2017
summer 2015

New study identifies dramatic shifting of the microbiome in inflammatory bowel disease

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is an autoimmune condition where, in most cases, there are multiple triggers stimulating the immune system in multiple ways over a long period of time.

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December 21, 2016
summer 2015

Microbiota: Reseeding the gut

Transplants of faecal matter have done wonders for the treatment of certain gastrointestinal infections. Will they ever work for inflammatory bowel disease?

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September 9, 2016
summer 2015

Incredible video shows how bacteria become resistant to antibiotics

Watch bacteria evolve to develop resistance to increasingly higher doses of antibiotics in just 12 days.

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July 15, 2016
summer 2015

Fecal Transplants Can Be Life-Saving, but How?

A fecal transplant is exactly what it sounds like: To treat certain gut disorders, doctors transfer stool from a healthy donor to a sick patient. Just a few years ago, only a few doctors turned to fecal transplants, typically as a last resort. But in randomized trials, the procedure has proved remarkably effective against potentially fatal infections of bacteria known as Clostridium difficile.

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June 8, 2016
summer 2015

Obesity May Be Influenced By Gut Bacteria, And Researchers Are Closer To Understanding How

Studies have found that a diet high in fat, a common risk factor of obesity, can trigger widespread disruptions to the microbial environment, or microbiota, in test animals like mice and zebrafish. Others, meanwhile, have showed that this link works both ways: When scientists transplanted gut bacteria from a group of healthy mice into a group of mice engineered to have no bacteria whatsoever, the lean germ-free mice became fatter. This same effect was seen even when the gut bacteria from obese people was transplanted into these mice.

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June 1, 2016
summer 2015

Fecal Transplants Effective for Healing Ulcerative Colitis

It is widely known that fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) is effective for the treatment of recurring Clostridium difficile (C. diff) infection, but new research supports the procedure’s efficacy for helping patients with ulcerative colitis (UC).

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May 27, 2016
summer 2015

A dreaded superbug found for the first time in a U.S. woman

(CNN) A 49-year-old Pennsylvania woman showed the presence of a rare kind of E. coli infection, the first known case of its kind in the United States. It is a superbug that is resistant to many antibiotics, even Colistin, which doctors use as a last resort when other antibiotics fail.

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May 9, 2016
summer 2015

Gut-microbe connection moves into MS territory

A team of investigators at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) has found evidence that suggests that bacteria living in the gut may remotely influence the activity of cells in the brain that are involved in controlling inflammation and neurodegeneration.

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March 11, 2016
summer 2015

The Evolving Human Microbiome

This is a very informative and interesting video presented by Dr. Alexander Khoruts, MD, of the University of Minnesota Microbiota Therapeutics Program. He addresses the relationship humans have with our microbial communities and how our diet and antibiotic usage have affected our microbial composition. The decrease in our microbial diversity could have huge ramifications, and he is actively pursuing innovative research to address this problem. This video was published by the University of Minnesota.

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December 11, 2014
summer 2015

Superbugs to kill 'more than cancer' by 2050

Drug resistant infections will kill an extra 10 million people a year worldwide - more than currently die from cancer - by 2050 unless action is taken, a study says.

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summer 2015

New Game Plan

Nothing could keep Gopher linebacker Peter Westerhaus off the foot­ball field. Well, almost nothing. Minnesota’s Mr. Football 2010, who as a kid slept in a helmet while cradling a football, had an unrivaled passion and work ethic. But in 2013, a brutal case of ulcerative colitis took him away from the game he loved.

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