Get the The 2012 Edition of Key Advances in Medicine—an outstanding free ebook from Nature Reviews

The Nature Reviews Key Advances in Medicine 2012 collects 43 articles from eight clinical Nature Reviews journals that highlight the medical advances of 2011. (1)

The eight journals that the articles came from are: Nature Reviews Cardiology, Nature Reviews Oncology, Nature Reviews Endocrinology, Nature Reviews Gastroenterology + Hepatology, Nature Reviews Nephrology, Nature Reviews Neurology, Nature Reviews Rheumatology, and Nature Reviews Urology.

Each of the 43 articles has an excellent short summary of key advances.

The article, Stroke Prevention in AF (atrial fibrillation), is in the Nature Reviews Cardiology section. There is important new information on the assessment of stroke risk in atrial fibrillation to determine who will benefit from oral anticoagulation and who won’t. In addition, a new tool for the assessment of bleeding risk with anticoagulation is discussed. The references in this article contain the details on these topics. (P S3)

Another article in the Cardiology section, Heart failure therapy—technology to the fore, details the advances of mechanical therapy in chronic heart failure with the HeartMate II (a left ventricular assist device—that is, a mechanical heart pump that helps the heart pump blood). (P S5)

In the Nature Reviews Oncology section we learn that so far “There are currently [still] no evidence-based data supporting the clinical utility of any ovarian cancer screening strategy in non‑high-risk populations.” P S11

There have been key advances in the treatment of hepatitis C infection according to an article in Gastroenterology + Hepatology. There are two new very effective drugs available for treatment: Boceprevir and telaprevir—both are protease inhibitors.  (P S33)

In another article in Gastroenterology + Hepatology we learn that “luminal nutrients can have acute effects on mood as well as satiety. Evidence indicates that endocannabinoid signaling in the gut regulates fat consumption. Thus, the capacity to regulate fat intake exists within the gut, and this process could, in turn, have an effect on emotional state and long-term  energy balance.” (P S41)

In the Neurology section, it is stated that  “Intracranial stenting produces higher rates of stroke and death than an intensive medical management strategy for severe symptomatic atherosclerotic stenosis.” (P S56)

There is a new oral immunomodulator, teriflunimide, that in a phase III trial of multiple sclerosis patients that showed  “significant benefit in reducing relapses and slowing disease progression”. (P S59)

(1) The 2012 Edition of Key Advances in Medicine—a free ebook from Nature Review available at

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