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On ‘Sound Medicine’: Advances in multiple sclerosis, the deep-fried truth, and how we resemble our pets


INDIANAPOLIS — The award-winning “Sound Medicine” announces its program for March 3, featuring several segments covering multiple sclerosis research, advances in wound care, and exercise during cancer treatment to lower mortality rates. Please check local listings for broadcast dates, times and stations.

Can cells be reprogrammed to battle multiple sclerosis? Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease that affects the brain and spinal cord when the body’s immune system attacks myelin, a fatty substance that protects the nerves. Multiple sclerosis destroys the myelin coating and causes lesions in the brain. Timothy Coetzee, M.D., chief research officer for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, discusses the recent advances in multiple sclerosis research. According to Dr. Coetzee, researchers are in the process of reprogramming skin cells, umbilical cord cells and nerve cells with the hope of finding a way to regenerate the destroyed and damaged myelin.

Can sweat glands be used to heal skin wounds? According to Laure Rittié, Ph.D., sweat glands are major contributors to wound closure in humans, including scrapes, burns and even persistent skin ulcers. Before Dr. Rittié’s research, it was thought that hair follicles and the migration of cells inward toward the wound helped skin abrasions heal.  This discovery is a very important first step in the process of wound closure. Non-healing wounds like skin ulcers and bed sores cost billions of dollars every year. Dr. Rittié’s discovery could lead to the development of drug therapies targeted to increase wound healing. Dr. Rittié is a research assistant professor for the Department of Dermatology at the University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor.

Do french fries contribute to skin problems? Valori Treloar, M.D., dermatologist and author of “The Clear Skin Diet,” discusses the down-and-dirty truth about America’s favorite snack, french fries. French fries are immersed and fried in vegetable oil, which contains Omega-6 fatty acids that cause inflammation throughout the body, including the face. Inflammation can cause acne, which is one of the side affects of consuming too many french fries. Dr. Treloar suggests cutting out french fries and Omega-6 fatty acids for healthy and beautiful skin.

Should cancer patients exercise? While receiving chemotherapy and radiation, cancer patients are encouraged to rest and take it easy. However, according to the Journal of Clinical Oncology, patients who exercised regularly after receiving a diagnosis of colon cancer had a lower mortality rate than those who didn’t exercise. Julie Flucht, field producer, explores the exercise options for people receiving cancer treatments. Flucht speaks with several personal trainers who have customized training regimens for their clients undergoing cancer treatments, including chemotherapy. Although exercise can help reduce mortality rates, insurance companies haven’t caught on. Paying for a personal trainer is expensive, and most insurance companies won’t cover the tab.

How similar are animals and humans? Host Barbara Lewis speaks with Elizabeth Murphy, DVM, about the book “Zoobiquity” and how similar pets are to their owners. According to Dr. Murphy, humans and animals have similar organs and disease processes. Humans and animals today suffer from arthritis, type 2 diabetes and obesity. Many animals and humans lead a sedentary lifestyle, consume more calories and get less exercise than in the past. Dr. Murphy encourages all owners to steer clear of dry pet food because it’s loaded with calories. If dry food is the only option for your animal, make sure the serving size is followed carefully. Dr. Murphy will be speaking with “Sound Medicine” several times over the next few months about the relationships humans form with their pets.

“Sound Medicine” covers controversial ethics topics, breakthrough research studies and the day-to-day application of recent advancements in medicine. It’s also available via podcast and Stitcher Radio for mobile phones and iPads and posts updates on Facebook and Twitter.

“Sound Medicine,” co-produced by the IU School of Medicine and WFYI Public Radio (90.1 FM) and underwritten in part by Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, is aired on the following Indiana public radio stations: WBSB (Anderson, 89.5 FM), WFIU (Bloomington, 103.7 FM; Columbus, 100.7 FM; Kokomo, 106.1 FM; Terre Haute, 95.1 FM), WNDY (Crawfordsville, 91.3 FM), WVPE (Elkhart/South Bend, 88.1 FM), WNIN (Evansville, 88.3 FM), WBOI (Fort Wayne, 89.1 FM), WFCI (Franklin, 89.5 FM), WBSH (Hagerstown/New Castle, 91.1 FM), WFYI (Indianapolis), WBSW (Marion, 90.9 FM), WBST (Muncie, 92.1 FM), WBSJ (Portland, 91.7 FM), WLPR (Lake County, 89.1 FM) and WBAA (West Lafayette, 101.3 FM). 

“Sound Medicine” is also broadcast on these public radio stations across the country: KSKA (Anchorage, Alaska), KTNA (Talkeetna, Alaska), KUHB (Pribilof Islands, Alaska), KUAF (Fayetteville and Fort Smith, Ark.), KIDE (Hoopa Valley, Calif.), KRCC (Colorado Springs, Colo.), KEDM (Monroe, La.), WCMU (Mount Pleasant, Mich.), WCNY and WRVO-1 (Syracuse, N.Y.), KMHA (Four Bears, N.D.), WYSU (Youngstown, Ohio), KPOV (Bend, Ore.) and KEOS (College Station, Texas).