Friday, August 29, 2008

Scientists transform adult cell, which could lead to cures

Treatment

Dr. Smyth

Neurologist, MS Specialist
View BIO
http://www.msanswers.ca/ExpertBio.aspx?L=2&EID=57

Q :

My husband has primary MS and is considering going to the Sanoviv Clinic, have you ever heard of any successes they have had with MS? I can't seem to find anything about it on any of the MS web sites.


A :
I have never heard of the Sanoviv Clinic before. I looked it up on the internet and read about it. I have never heard of MS patient successes from the Sanoviv Clinic.
Primary progressive MS is a type of MS that slowly progresses over time without relapses. People notice that they just can’t do things as well as they could one or two years earlier. There have been no medical treatments that have been shown to slow down the progression of this type of MS. However, some studies have shown that people with primary progressive MS may plateau out for years, and sometimes stabilize.
We concentrate on treating this type of MS by treating the symptoms that a person is having. Much of those symptom management treatments involve exercise, healthy diet and looking after yourself. None of my patients have gone to the Sanoviv Clinic. I would be a little cautious about the Sanoviv clinic. Much of its claims seem to involve healthy life strategies that you may be able to adopt through less expensive means. There is no miraculous cure for MS. I have no doubt that you would feel better once you have rested there for a time, followed a healthy diet and done an exercise program. However, I think that you may be able to achieve many of those goals through exploring local physiotherapists in developing exercise programs, consulting a dietician, and resting properly. All of these lifestyle changes have been shown to help MS.
8/29/2008 8:02:30 AM
More answers from Dr. Penelope Smyth
http://www.msanswers.ca/QuestionListByExpert.aspx?EID=57&L=2
More answers in the category: Treatment
http://www.msanswers.ca/QuestionList.aspx?CID=2&L=2

DISCLAIMER: Please be aware that this information does not necessarily represent the opinion of the MS Society of Canada, and is not intended as medical advice. For specific advice and opinion, always consult a physician.
© 2008 Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada | www.mssociety.ca

http://www.mssociety.ca

http://www.msanswers.ca/QuestionView.aspx?L=2&QID=2164



‘I’m sorry, but another apology for MS sufferer Janet just isn’t ...
Camden New Journal - London,UK
Janet has secondary progressive MS, a particularly violent form of the disease that attacks the nervous system. Although she began to experience symptoms as ...
http://www.thecnj.co.uk/camden/2008/082808/news082808_08.html
MRI in Differential Diagnosis of MS
In this case-based CME/CE newsletter, Dr. Tracy DeAngelis seeks an accurate diagnosis for a patient whose MRI suggests chronic demyelinating disease by applying updated McDonald Criteria and performing additional workups to rule out other potential causes of the MRI abnormalities.
Source:
Projects In Knowledge [more]
http://broadcaster.medpagetoday.com/t?r=2&c=1989&l=15&ctl=D9DE:961584531C0AE512EEDCC8A7857BDC93

Symptoms and Management

Dr. Girard

Neurologist, Hôtel-Dieu Hospital (CHUM)in Montreal, QC
View BIO
http://www.msanswers.ca/ExpertBio.aspx?L=2&EID=26

Q :

I have MS and my right arm currently feels uncomfortable and numb. Since the discomfort is mild, will it go away by itself after awhile, or do I really need to take cortisone to alleviate this symptom? I was diagnosed quite recently, and I still have some difficulty knowing when cortisone is really necessary.
A :
You seem to be having a mild relapse. This type of relapse will generally resolve within a few weeks. Cortisone usually helps you to recover faster when you have a relapse, but not any better than if you did not have cortisone. For that reason, we only administer cortisone for more severe relapses that affect how you function (loss of vision, paralysis, dizziness, painful numbness) to reduce their duration.

When a neurologist decides to administer cortisone, he or she must take into account the extent of the relapse compared with cortisone’s side effects: a blood sugar level imbalance, heartburn, sleep disturbances and, subsequently, a higher risk of cataracts and hip fractures.

In your case, it does not seem to be necessary to use cortisone.
8/28/2008 2:12:48 AM

More answers from Dr. Marc Girard
http://www.msanswers.ca/QuestionListByExpert.aspx?EID=26&L=2

More answers in the category: Symptoms and Management

http://www.msanswers.ca/QuestionList.aspx?CID=10&L=2

http://www.msanswers.ca/QuestionView.aspx?L=2&QID=2160
Elan says Tysabri brain disease link uncertain
ShareCast via Yahoo! UK & Ireland Finance Thu, 28 Aug 2008 5:16 AM PDT
Irish drug giant Elan said the risk of a fatal brain disease in patients treated with its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri "cannot be precisely estimated."
http://uk.biz.yahoo.com/080828/214/i5qho.html

Tysabri

Elan says Tysabri brain disease link uncertain
ShareCast - London,UK
LONDON (SHARECAST) - Irish drug giant Elan said the risk of a fatal brain disease in patients treated with its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri “cannot be ...
http://www.sharecast.com/cgi-bin/sharecast/story.cgi?story_id=2301668

Dublin market flat in early trading
Irish Times - Dublin,Ireland
... up 11 cent to €9.46 after it said it had narrowed it first half loss on the back of a strong rise in sales for its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri. ...
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2008/0828/breaking21.htm

Elan as Tysabri sales rise
Irish Times - Dublin,Ireland
Irish pharmaceutical firm Elan has narrowed it first half loss on the back of a strong rise in sales for its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri. ...
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2008/0828/breaking18.htm

FDA Changes Course for Elan and Biogen Idec
Motley Fool - USA
Three months later, in February 2005, the drugmakers "voluntarily" withdrew Tysabri from the market because of two occurrences of a rare and frequently ...
http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2008/08/26/fda-changes-course-for-elan-and-biogen-idec.aspx

Biogen Idec (BIIB) NewsBite - BIIB Revises Drug Warning
Market Intelligence Center - Charlottesville,VA,USA
Shares of BIIB are trading higher this morning after the company announced it has revised the warning label for Tysabri, a multiple sclerosis drug the ...
http://www.marketintelligencecenter.com/articles/665187

Elan's shares jump 10pc on Tysabri hopes
Irish Independent - Dublin,Ireland
By Ailish O'Hora Business News Editor SHARES in drugmaker Elan surged by more than 10pc yesterday on hopes that a new warning on its Tysabri medicine for ...
http://www.independent.ie/business/irish/elans-shares-jump-10pc-on-tysabri-hopes-1463799.html

Tysabri sales narrow Elan H1 loss
RTE.ie - Ireland
Sales of Tysabri were worth almost $360m in the six months, almost treble the amount in the same period a year earlier, bringing in revenue of $134.3m for ...
http://www.rte.ie/business/2008/0828/elan.html

Elan reports total revenue increased by 18% in H1 2008; Net loss ...
FinFacts Ireland - Ireland
Total in-market sales of the MS (multiple sclerosis) Tysabri drug were $359.7 million in the first half of 2008, an increase of 199% over the $120.5 million ...
http://www.finfacts.ie/irishfinancenews/article_1014558.shtml


Exclusive: Martial arts champion hit by multiple sclerosis denied ...
Glasgow Daily Record - Glasgow,Scotland,UK
Alan added: "With the advances in stem cell research, there is some suggestion there could be a cure within the next five years, which gives us hope. ...
http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/2008/08/28/no-way-to-treat-a-hero-86908-20714087/

Diabetes researchers convert pancreas cells to produce insulin
http://link.latimes.com/r/ZEZWGA/MRJMH/F9K2FA/U82N/1FJEQ/W1/h

By Karen Kaplan

The Harvard study may ultimately shift treatment options away from stem cells for a variety of diseases.

http://link.latimes.com/r/ZEZWGA/MRJMH/F9K2FA/U82N/1FJEQ/W1/h

Preventive migraine therapy with a proven safety profile
Looking for a different treatment option for migraine patients? Consider the #1 medication prescribed by neurologists for migraine prevention1. Click to learn more about a treatment option with a proven safety profile. 1.IMS Health January 2008 . Source: Ortho-McNeil Neurologics
http://broadcaster.medpagetoday.com/t?r=2&c=1989&l=15&ctl=D9E3:961584531C0AE512EEDCC8A7857BDC93
Obesity-Related Impairment in Older Adults Called Ticking Time Bomb
PLYMOUTH, England -- Obesity in later life substantially increases the risk of disability but not mortality, according to data from a longitudinal study of aging. full story
http://broadcaster.medpagetoday.com/t?r=2&c=1989&l=15&ctl=D9BF:961584531C0AE512EEDCC8A7857BDC93http://broadcaster.medpagetoday.com/t?r=2&c=1989&l=15&ctl=D9BF:961584531C0AE512EEDCC8A7857BDC93

http://www.medpagetoday.com/PrimaryCare/Obesity/tb/10665

Stem cell alchemy

Researchers flip fully-differentiated cells in vivo into another type of cell without first reprogramming them to a pluripotent state

By Andrea Gawrylewski
http://strongmail.the-scientist.com:80/track?type=click&mailingid=867&messageid=1&databaseid=8&serial=1204298075&emailid=fooledbyasmile@mountaincable.net&userid=54355&extra=&&&2013&&&http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/54976/

NOVA | scienceNOW | Stem Cell Breakthrough: Related Science News | PBS

Thu, 31 Jul 2008 Stem Cell Advance Turns Skin Cells into Nerve Cells .... A top scientist using stem cells from human embryos to cure disease and repair ...
www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/sciencenow/0305/03-related.html
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/sciencenow/0305/03-related.html


Thu, 31 Jul 2008

Stem Cell Advance Turns Skin Cells into Nerve Cells

http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=778485

Researchers are one step closer to reprogramming skin cells into tailor-made, healthy replacements for diseased cells.

Applying the technique first developed by James Thomson of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University, scientists at Harvard and Columbia universities reported online Thursday in the journal Science that they had turned skin cells from two elderly patients with the neurodegenerative disorder amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) into motor neurons, the nerve cells that become damaged in ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

This is the first time that scientists have coaxed embryonic-like cells from adult patients suffering from a genetic-based disease, then induced the cells to form the specific cell types that would be needed to study and treat the disease.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/sciencenow/0305/03-related.html

Stem cell advance turns ailing sisters' skin cells into nerve cells

Elderly siblings have Lou Gehrig's disease
By ELIE DOLGIN
edolgin@journalsentinel.com
Posted: July 31, 2008
Researchers are one step closer to reprogramming skin cells into tailor-made, healthy replacements for diseased cells.
90283

Applying the technique first developed by James Thomson of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University, scientists at Harvard and Columbia universities reported online Thursday in the journal Science that they had turned skin cells from two elderly patients with the neurodegenerative disorder amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) into motor neurons, the nerve cells that become damaged in ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

This is the first time that scientists have coaxed embryonic-like cells from adult patients suffering from a genetic-based disease, then induced the cells to form the specific cell types that would be needed to study and treat the disease.

"It's a big step forward," said Stephen Duncan, a stem cell researcher at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Wauwatosa, who was not involved in the research. "It opens the door for people to go confidently into generating (reprogrammed stem) cells for other disease models."

"We're on the threshold of a new era of technology where we might have some definitive strategies to better treat or cure diseases like ALS or other neurodegenerative diseases," said Medical College neurologist Paul Barkhaus.

A team led by Kevin Eggan of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute in Boston started with skin cells from two sisters, ages 82 and 89, who both carried a rare gene associated with a slowly progressing form of ALS.

Around the world, one or two people per 100,000 develop ALS each year, which is marked by a wasting away of certain spinal cord nerve cells called motor neurons. The single-gene form of ALS studied by Eggan's team affects only about 2% of ALS sufferers, while the vast majority of ALS cases are sporadic.

In their laboratory, the researchers inserted four genes into the cells using a virus - just as Thomson and Yamanaka had done last November - that rewound the cell's developmental clock into an embryonic-like state.

The researchers then bathed the cells in signaling molecules to produce motor neurons and the nerve cells that support and protect the neurons, called glial cells.

"It's possible to use these cells to make the actual cell type that is destroyed in that person's disease," Eggan said. "It takes the study of disease out of the patient, where it's very difficult, and into the petri dish."

The researchers' ultimate goal is to create genetically matched, patient-specific cells to treat debilitating diseases. But the current technique of inserting genes with viruses has potential cancerous side effects, making transplanting these cells into humans too risky.

"The process leads to genetic modification of these cells," Eggan said. "For the moment, that would preclude the use of these exact cells in these patients."

Future research should find safer reprogramming methods, scientists say. In the meantime, the new reprogrammed stem cells will be valuable for understanding and combating the damage ALS does to the nervous system.

"These patient-specific stem cells will be useful for pathological studies, and potentially also for drug screening," said UW-Madison stem cell researcher Su-Chun Zhang, who was not involved in the study.

"Using these cells, we can test chemical compounds for their ability to prevent (neuron) degeneration," said Christopher Henderson, a neurologist at Columbia University and a co-author of the study.

UW-Madison's Junying Yu, the first author on Thomson's pioneering reprogramming study, published last year, said the new research is a natural extension of their earlier "proof of principle" work.

"It essentially proves that (reprogrammed stem) cells can be derived from diseased human (skin) cells as well" as from healthy patients, "at whatever age, young people or old people."

Yu said her lab also reprogrammed skin cells from patients suffering from spinal muscular atrophy, a neurodegenerative disease that controls voluntary muscle movement.

Like Eggan's group, Yu said her team then successfully formed the muscle cells normally lost by the disease, although the work is not yet published.

Eggan's study shows that specialized cells can be made from skin cells in the lab, but the researchers didn't test whether the cells function in the same way as normal motor neurons, noted UW-Madison stem cell researcher Clive Svendsen.

"The hard work now is to establish whether the ALS (reprogrammed) cells are any different from those taken from normal patients."

Because reprogrammed stem cells can trigger cancer, scientists stress that research involving human embryonic stem cells is still needed.

Researchers step closer to using stem cells to cure disease

http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=778485

www.kansascity.com | 08/27/2008 | Scientists transform adult cell, which could lead to cures
...
http://www.kansascity.com/news/nation/story/770312.html

27 Aug 2008 ... WASHINGTON | Scientists have transformed one type of fully developed adult ... Scientists transform adult cell, which could lead to cures ...
www.kansascity.com/news/nation/story/770312.html

Scientists transform adult cell, which could lead to cures

By ROB STEIN
The Washington Post

WASHINGTON | Scientists have transformed one type of fully developed adult cell directly into another inside a living animal.

It’s a startling advance that could lead to cures for a plethora of illnesses and sidestep the political and ethical quagmires that have plagued embryonic stem cell research.

Through a series of experiments involving mice, the Harvard biologists pinpointed three crucial molecular switches that, when flipped, completely convert a common cell in the pancreas into the more precious insulin-producing ones that diabetics need to survive.

The feat, published online Wednesday by the journal Nature, raises the tantalizing prospect that patients suffering from not only diabetes but also heart disease, strokes and many other ailments could eventually have some of their cells reprogrammed to cure their afflictions without the need for drugs, transplants or other therapies.

“It’s kind of an extreme makeover of a cell,” said Douglas Melton, co-director of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, who led the research. “The goal is to create cells that are missing or defective in people. It’s very exciting.”

The findings left other researchers in a field that has become accustomed to rapid advances reaching for new superlatives to describe the potential implications.

“I’m stunned,” said Robert Lanza, chief scientific officer of Advanced Cell Technology in Worcester, Mass., a developer of stem cell therapies. “It introduces a whole new paradigm for treating disease.”

Melton and other researchers cautioned that many years of research lay ahead to prove whether the development would translate into cures.

The research is the latest development in the explosive field of “regenerative medicine,” which is trying to create replacement tissues and body parts tailored to patients. That dream appeared within reach after scientists discovered human embryonic stem cells, which can develop into any type of cell in the body. But stem cell research has been plagued by political and ethical debates because the cells can only be obtained by destroying embryos, which has been opposed by President Bush and others who believe that even the earliest stages of human life have moral standing.

The new work raises new promise.

“This experiment proves you don’t have to go all the way back to an embryonic state,” said George Daley, a stem cell researcher at Children’s Hospital in Boston.

http://www.kansascity.com/news/nation/story/770312.html


Study: Single rooms should become standard for new hospitals

http://www.uptilt.com/c.html?rtr=on&s=69l,11mca,osy,isrf,bfum,5ewk,1y5l

 

By Anne Zieger  

Have you noticed, lately, that when hospitals and health systems announce a new facility, it usually comes with private rooms? That's not a coincidence. Increasingly, hospital planners are reaching a consensus that the benefits to single-patient rooms far outweigh the costs, argue the authors of a new paper appearing in the Journal of the American Medical Association.


The authors note that studies have shown single rooms to reduce infections, particularly important in the age of MRSA and other "superbugs," and that they may also cut medication errors. Also, with single rooms, physicians can talk with patients privately, and families can be there. What's more, since they're quieter, single rooms help lower patient blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory rates, as well as improving the quality of sleep and helping with pain management.

While the authors admit that single-room hospitals increase construction costs, with added expenses of $182 to $400 per patient for a new single-room ward versus $122 to $500 for a ward with double rooms, many of these expenses are capital costs that will be recouped comparatively quickly, researchers suggest.
To learn more about this study:
- read this HealthDay News piece
http://www.uptilt.com/c.html?rtr=on&s=69l,11mca,osy,1n89,m5zs,5ewk,1y5l

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