Mayo Clinic to Study Mountaineers


Courtesy of Flickr

The Mayo Clinic has set up an Argentine expedition to study the ultra runner Diane Van Deren. Roughly 20 years ago, Van Deren started having seizures. In 1997, she underwent major surgery that removed part of her brain's right temporal lobe. She hasn't had a seizure since.

Cardiologist Bruce Johnson will travel with Van Deren to Aconcagua, the world's second highest mountain range, to study her physiology as she climbs the mountain. She'll do the climb twice–the second time will be a race to the summit, with Van Deren looking to make record time.

The study is to help researchers understand more of how the body works under extreme stress, which will hopefully apply toward treating disease and illness.

You can follow the month-long expedition, which leaves on Jan. 22, on Twitter.

–Aileen Torres