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Using DNA to Treat Genetic Diseases

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

Release Date: 11/26/2019

Creating an Inclusive, Human-Focused Innovation-Driven Future During COVID-19 show art Creating an Inclusive, Human-Focused Innovation-Driven Future During COVID-19

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

Even before the pandemic, today’s guest believed that the world of innovation is in need of a refresh. Alexandre (Alex) Lazarow believes that this refresh comes from what he calls the “frontier” - - the growing constellation of startup ecosystems, outside of the Silicon Valley and other major economic centers, that now stretches across the globe.

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Necessity Drives Innovation; Innovation is a Necessity show art Necessity Drives Innovation; Innovation is a Necessity

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

This episodes guest, Alex Goryachev is an entrepreneurial go-getter. He takes risks, thinks ahead, and loves making way for new innovations. Over the past 20 years, he’s made it his business to turn disruptive concepts into emerging business models. Alex is also the author of " Fearless Innovation: Going Beyond the Buzzword to Continuously Drive Growth, Improve the Bottom Line, and Enact Change".

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Computers Help Us Fight Disease show art Computers Help Us Fight Disease

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

This episodes guest not only uses computational medicine to lead research to solve big healthcare problems, he also works to educate the next generation of scientists in this field. Dr. Chris Langmead is a Professor in the Carnegie Mellon University Computational Biology Department. He is a globally-recognized Computer Scientist with expertise in Machine Learning as well as modeling and simulating biological systems.

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Intrapreneuring in Healthcare to Create Better Patient Care show art Intrapreneuring in Healthcare to Create Better Patient Care

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

This episode’s guest is an Intrapreneur working on the cutting edge of healthcare innovation and has spent her career matching her passion of caring for patients with a desire to implement novel technology solutions to create tools for better patient care at the right time and place.

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Cutting and Editing DNA with CRISPR  show art Cutting and Editing DNA with CRISPR

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

Dr. Samira Kiani is a Professor in the Department of Pathology at the University of Pittsburgh. Samira launched her own lab in 2016 after time at MIT where she worked on developing synthetic gene circuits to reprogram the function and behavior of mammalian cells using CRISPR. In addition to her research work, Samira is passionate about people and how science affects their quality of life.

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Artificial Intelligence for Improving Healthcare  show art Artificial Intelligence for Improving Healthcare

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

The expert on this episode, Piyush Mathur MD, FCCM is the founder and team lead of BrainX. He is an Anesthesiologist, Intensivist and the quality improvement officer for Anesthesiology Institute, Cleveland Clinic. He is a leader in quality and patient safety who has innovated and successfully implemented many algorithms and tools in electronic health records such as difficult airway identification (EPIC),anesthesia awareness alert (DSS, Talis), antibiotic alert (ACG, Talis).

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Doctor from Home show art Doctor from Home

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

Telemedicine is a big business; by 2025, it has been projected to exceed $64.1 billion in the U.S. alone. The current COVID-19 Shelter-at-Home requirements have changed everything. The Pandemic has forced primary care and specialty clinicians to adopt virtual care and telehealth. This episodes guest, Dr. Jay H. Sanders, is the CEO of The Global Telemedicine Group and Professor of Medicine (Adjunct) at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

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Work From Home show art Work From Home

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

If ever someone skated to the puck and wrote about the tools and ideas for tomorrow’s challenge, without actually knowing that tomorrow would become today overnight, it is this episode’s guests. Karin Hurt and David Dye have written about their approach to organizational success: A Courageous Culture. They believe that eliminating the safe silence that results from not speaking up and not contributing to the mission of the organization can help organizations thrive and innovate.

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On the Front Line Assessing and Fighting Disease Outbreaks show art On the Front Line Assessing and Fighting Disease Outbreaks

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

Just before the CIVID-19 pandemic paralyzed the world, Innovation Unleashed had the opportunity to sit down with Kristen Finne, the Director of the Department of Health and Human Services, emPOWER Program in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. At that time, we were not yet talking about this specific disease outbreak but we were talking about Kristen’s work as one of the dedicated public servants who work around the clock to ensure that.

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The Science of Trusted Leadership on Good Days and in Bad Times  show art The Science of Trusted Leadership on Good Days and in Bad Times

Innovation Unleashed Podcast

It is an understandably frightening time for all of us because nothing like this has happened in our lifetime.

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DNA or deoxyribonucleic acid, is perhaps the most well-known biological molecule. DNA is present in all forms of life on earth. Essentially, every cell in our bodies contains DNA or the genetic instructions - or code - that makes us what we are. DNA has a unique double helix shape, like a twisted ladder and carries these instructions or code for the development, growth, reproduction, functioning and health of all life. Remarkably, if all of the DNA in a human body was unraveled, it would reach to the sun and back more than 300 times.

The code in DNA is determined by the order of the four nucleotide bases that make up DNA, adenine, cytosine, guanine and thymine and is the complete set of genes and is called a genome.

As the National Human Genome Research Institute works to unlock the secrets of the human genome, researchers continue learning that nearly all diseases that we face have a genetic component. Some diseases are caused by mutations that are inherited from parents and are present in an individual at birth, like sickle cell disease, for example. Other diseases are caused by acquired mutations in a gene or group of genes that occur during a person's life. Such mutations are not inherited from a parent, but occur either randomly or due to some environmental exposure like pollutants. Today’s guest is working tirelessly to create therapies to treat genetic diseases. Specifically, Monogenic diseases.

As defined by the World Health Organization, Monogenic diseases result from modifications in a single gene occurring in all cells of the body. Though relatively rare, they affect millions of people worldwide. Researchers estimate that over 10,000 of human diseases are known to be monogenic. Pure genetic diseases are caused by a single error in a single gene in the human DNA.

As you can gather from my brief description, working to treat genetic diseases is complicated, demanding work and requires the commitment and intellectual power of people who are dedicated to finding answers. Today’s guest Scott Sneddon is one of those people. Scott is the President & CEO of Sharp Edge Labs. He is an entrepreneur and scientist trained in chemistry and biology with an emphasis on computational methods. He holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry & Biophysics from Carnegie-Mellon University, a J.D. from Columbia University Law School and has over 20 years of experience in the drug discovery industry, having held leadership positions at Pfizer and Genzyme. At Pfizer Dr. Sneddon was a member of the New Leads Discovery group under innovator Fred Vinick. He then went to Genzyme with Fred to help establish Genzyme's small molecule drug discovery program. There he led the Assay Development and High Throughput Screening group and was a pioneer in implementing high-throughput functional cellular assays for primary drug screening (before such a thing was fashionable).