Wednesday, September 10, 2008

MS Patient Turns To TroubleShooter For Help Getting Medical Lift - vitamin B12 brain shrinkage

My Impression of Frankenstein
By TickledPink(TickledPink)
It was my entry into the No Kidding This is IT part of the trial where I don't have to wonder, "Is it Fingolimod or is it Avonex? Only her hairdresser knows for sure." I'm just hoping the lack of the proper verbiage...where they were ...
Fingolimod and Me - http://fty720.blogspot.com/ 



Gene Therapy For Blindness Improves Vision, Safety Study Indicates
Science Daily (press release) - USA
"This groundbreaking gene therapy trial builds on 15 years of research sponsored by the National Eye Institute of NIH," said Paul A. Sieving, MD, Ph.D., ...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080908185316.htm

MS Patient Turns To TroubleShooter For Help Getting Medical Lift
WKRC TV Cincinnati - Cincinnati,OH,USA
44 year old Connie Johnson, of Guilford, has primary progressive multiple sclerosis. Her husband Ralph, along with their two young daughters, help care for ...
http://www.local12.com/news/local/story.aspx?content_id=d94aee15-4366-4824-baeb-97210f659803

A diabetic turns to the tattoo as medical I.D.

By Joshua Sandoval

A personalized design reflects his vocation and defines his illness. >>

Pre-diabetes is worth treating

By Valerie Ulene

Millions of Americans fall in between normal blood glucose levels and diabetic. Treatment, including exercise, better diet and weight loss, may prevent the full-on disease. >>



Positive Sativex® Study Confirms Long Term Efficacy in MS ...
PipelineReview.com (press release) - Barcelona,Spain
... positive results from a placebo-controlled “randomized withdrawal” study of Sativex® in patients with neuropathic pain due to Multiple Sclerosis (MS). ...
http://www.pipelinereview.com/content/view/21931/109/

Neuroinformatics 2008, Sept. 7-9: The First Congress Dedicated To The Emerging Field Of Neuroinformatics
The first INCF Congress of Neuroinformatics will convene September 7-9 at the Stockholm City Conference Center in Stockholm. The emerging neuroinformatics field combines neuroscience and informatics research to develop advanced tools and approaches to understanding the structure and function of the brain.http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/120598.php

vitamin B12 brain shrinkage


Low vitamin B12 level may cause brain shrinkage in old
Xinhua - China
9 (Xinhuanet)-- Low vitamin B12 level in old people may cause brain atrophy or shrinkage, according to a UK study in Tuesday's Neurology. ...
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-09/09/content_9867745.htm

Low Vitamin B-12 Seems To Cause Faster Brain Shrinkage

Methuselah Foundation - Washington,DC,USA
Keep up your vitamin B-12 levels so that your brain doesn't shrink any faster than it has to. Oh, and we really need gene therapies, stem cell therapies, ...
http://www.mprize.org/index.php?ctype=news&pagename=blogdetaildisplay&BID=2008095-08081753&detaildisplay=N
Health: Overweight Children
CBS 3 - Philadelphia,PA,USA
Older people who had higher vitamin B-12 levels... were six times less likely to experience brain shrinkage. Doctors say the nutrient can found in meat, ...
http://cbs3.com/local/overweight.children.obesity.2.812734.html
Neuromyelitis Optica Responds to Rituximab
LIVERPOOL, England -- Rituximab (Rituxan) appeared to be effective in slowing progression of neuromyelitis optica, but the drug is no panacea, researchers here said. full story
http://www.medpagetoday.com/Neurology/MultipleSclerosis/tb/10839

Low B12 Linked to Brain Atrophy
OXFORD, England -- Low levels of vitamin B 12 are associated with increased rates of brain atrophy in older people, researchers here said. full story
http://www.medpagetoday.com/Neurology/GeneralNeurology/tb/10835
Poor Sleep Elevates Fall Risk for Older Women 
SAN FRANCISCO -- For older women, poor sleep at night may be an independent risk factor for falls, according to researchers here. full story

http://www.medpagetoday.com/PrimaryCare/SleepDisorders/tb/10838

http://broadcaster.medpagetoday.com/t?r=2&c=2028&l=15&ctl=DD61:961584531C0AE5128877C8E795A22769



Scientists uncover the key to controlling how stem cells develop
Laboratory Products News - Toronto,Ontario,Canada
Drs Séguin and Rossant, along with their colleagues Dr Jonathan Draper of the Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute at McMaster University, and Dr Andras ...
http://www.labcanada.com/issues/ISArticle.asp?id=87987&issue=08072008
Hadassah Hospital Study Shows That Neural Cells Derived From Human ...
MarketWatch - USA
... that transplanted neural cells derived from human embryonic stem cells can reduce the clinical symptoms in animals with a form of multiple sclerosis. ...
http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/hadassah-hospital-study-shows-neural/story.aspx?guid=%7B8A603512-F245-4B77-8F4A-999A389E9339%7D&dist=hppr

Tysabri


Latest FDA Report Highlights: 8 Drugs That Carry Potential Risks
Seeking Alpha - New York,NY,USA
In February 2005, Tysabri was voluntarily removed from the market after two cases of PML were reported. However, the FDA has recently issued a statement ...See all stories on this topic 
http://seekingalpha.com/article/94557-latest-fda-report-highlights-8-drugs-that-carry-potential-risks

Elan's MS treatment listed as possibly harmful
Irish Independent - Dublin,Ireland
By Ailish O'Hora ELAN'S Multiple Sclerosis treatment, Tysabri, has been added to a Federal Drug Administration (FDA) list of drugs currently being used by ...
http://www.independent.ie/business/world/elans-ms-treatment-listed-as-possibly-harmful-1472189.html

New Tysabri Trials Underway, Despite Serious Risks
Newsinferno.com - New York,NY,USA
Despite the fact that it has been tied to a deadly brain infection, and is being investigated for a possible link to melanoma, the makers of Tysabri are ...
http://www.newsinferno.com/archives/3778

Biogen, Elan start testing Tysabri as cancer treatment
SmartBrief - Washington,DC,USA
Biogen Idec and Elan began a Phase I/II clinical trial of Tysabri -- a multiple sclerosis drug -- as a treatment for multiple myeloma. ...

http://www.smartbrief.com/news/aabb/storyDetails.jsp?issueid=7CA933C4-C3F8-4011-90C5-F7709E18BC83&copyid=6C36E4D3-F1BB-4D3A-9BD8-1BD795B66243




Daily Living with MS

Dr. Myles

Associate Clinical Professor of Neurology at the University of Alberta
View BIO

Q :
I was diagnosed with MS in 2001, I go through episodes when breathing becomes difficult and will have to focus on getting a deep breath by yawning. I feel like I am suffocating but I know that I am not. Eating definitely aggravates the feeling. Any ideas on the cause and why I feel like this?
A :
Excessive yawning has been reported with a number of different neurologic conditions, including MS. In MS, it is believed to be due to involvement of the brainstem by MS plaques, yet it occurs only in a very small number of people with MS with brainstem involvement. Excessive yawning can also occur as a prodrome before migraine and this is actually fairly common so if you have headaches (migraine affects about 18 % of women and 6% of men in the population), watch for this connection. Excessive yawning can also occur with certain medications, including certain commonly used anti-depressants that work on serotonin (the SSRIs or selective serontonin reuptake inhibitors). The feeling of suffocating can sometimes be a symptom of anxiety. I am not sure why eating would aggravate the symptoms. It might be helpful to discuss these episodes in greater detail with your physician to determine if your MS, anxiety, medication side effects or some other medical condition is causing your symptoms.9/9/2008 9:09:15 PM
More answers from Dr. Mary Lou Myles
More answers in the category: Daily Living with MS

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.msanswers.ca/QuestionView.aspx?L=2&QID=1783


vitamin D
Light shines on vitamin D deficiency epidemic
Scarlet Scuttlebutt - East Brunswick,NJ,USA
They still might be susceptible to an epidemic that's starting to gain the notice of pediatricians and bone doctors across the country: vitamin D deficiency ...
http://www.mycentraljersey.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080909/HEALTH/809090308/-1/newsfront

Food, Disease, and You
American Chronicle - Beverly Hills,CA,USA
Oranges, bell peppers, broccoli, and parsley are excellent sources of Vitamin C. Vitamin D deficiency that is associated with weak bones now has been ...
http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/viewArticle.asp?articleID=73577

Treat Seasonal Depression With Vitamin D Supplements
Corsavoo.com - Bastia,Corse,France
Luckily, we can easily treat seasonal depression with Vitamin D Supplementation. Believe it or not, the sun supplies our bodies with Vitamin D. When our ...
http://www.corsavoo.com/depression/0,2577,455085,00.html

Teens Should Increase Vitamin D Intake by 1000 Percent to Avoid ...
Natural News.com - Phoenix,AZ,USA
(NaturalNews) The vitamin D recommendations for older children should be raised by 10 times, according to a study conducted by researchers from the American ...
http://www.naturalnews.com/024099.html







Today's Top News

1. Salary survey shows big hike in scientists' pay

By John Carroll

U.S. life scientists are feeling somewhat flush these days. The Scientists' fifth annual salary survey shows that median compensation in the U.S. jumped 15 percent since 2006, rising from $74,000 to $85,000. As usual, industry scientists set the pace, at $107,000 a year compared to $77,900 for academics and private institutions. And a growing slice of the annual take-home is coming in the form of bonuses. Close to 12 percent of company pay is provided for bonuses now, compared to only 3.8 percent in 1991.

The salary survey also shows some big gaps between women and men in science. Female professors with 15 to 19 years experience earned a median salary of $126,000 compared to $164,000 for men. And the coasts offered more than anyplace in between. Tenured faculty earned $150,000 in California while the younger set of assistant professors can often earn more than $100,000 in Massachusetts.

- read the article from The Scientist

Related Articles:
WuXi buyout deal raises questions on scientists' pay scale
Whitehead ups pay for postdoc researchers
Biochemists fetch highest salaries in life sciences (Oct. 2007)
Biotech industry struggles to recruit talent (July 2007)

Read more about: compensation, salary


2. New genetic map used to advance drug research

By John Carroll

Using what we know already about genomics and genetic variations, researchers can pinpoint a person's geographic origins in Europe within a range of just a few hundred kilometers. And the increasing clarity of that genetic map can help researchers better understand the role genes play in the development of diseases.

Focusing entirely on genetic variations, researchers developed algorithms that could predict geographic origin--even the origination of specific ethnic groups inside Switzerland. GlaxoSmithKline participated in the study so it could gain a clearer understanding of the role pharmacogenetics could play in understanding the genetic risks posed by drugs.

"They are interested in pharmacogenetic purposes to do case control studies of adverse drug reactions," said John Novembre, a co-author of the study published in Nature.

"The idea is to save money in these large-scale genetic epidemiological studies," said Michael Krawczak, who took part in a similar study published in the Current Biology. "It's very costly to genotype people."

But if you establish genetic control groups you can test a drug against populations to understand where the greatest benefits lie, added Krawczak.

- read the article from MIT Technology Review


Related Articles:

Read more about: Genomics, genetics, John Novembre, Michael Krawczak


3. ESCs provide a key to new blood supply

By John Carroll

When scientists talk about the potential embryonic stem cells have in treating disease, they often focus on a relatively distant horizon when new therapies can be developed to cure some of the world's most complex diseases. But the New York Times points to a not-so-distant time when ESCs may be used to create a virtually unlimited supply of blood free from the risk of disease presented by donors.

To get there, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency--a key player in biomedical research--has begun a blood pharming project that will explore just how feasible that can be. The work has been advanced by Advanced Cell Technology, a stem cell company that has a troubled financial record, but a history of high-profile breakthroughs. They recently reported making 10 billion to 100 billion red cells after starting with a platelet of ESCs.

"It's the first time to my knowledge that anyone has been able to produce these on a sufficient scale to talk of using them for transfusion purposes," the co-author of the paper, Dr. George Honig of the University of Illinois at Chicago, tells the NYT.

- read the article in the New York Times


Related Articles:

ACT says it has found key to limitless blood supply

Stem cell revolutionaries take on big challenges

In research, stem cells make another breakthrough

What's in store for stem cell treatments?

Read more about: George Honig, advanced cell technology, Stem Cells


4. Researchers map the cancer genome

By John Carroll

Several studies published this week suggest that new ways of approaching the treatment of cancer is on the horizon. Scientists are attempting to use gene sequencing machines to identify the mutations that cause cancer, which they hope will allow for differentiated treatment to patients based on the genetic profile of their tumor. In addition, gene sequencing could also lead to developments in the way doctors test for cancer. A catalog of mutations for different tumors could allow doctors to test patients for the presence of DNA or dislodged cells from tumors much earlier.

The studies bring to light a number of barriers to identifying successful targeted treatments. They have found that the number of key genes that frequently mutate is much larger--and that the machinery of cancerous tumors is much more complicated---than expected.

Researchers working on the cancer-genome project at Johns Hopkins University published two separate papers in Science on pancreatic and brain cancer. A third study on brain cancer--funded by the NIH and published in Nature--is part of a $100 million, three-year pilot project called the Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network. They are currently attempting to map ovarian, lung and brain cancer, but if all goes well, the project may be expanded to include up to 50 common human cancers.

Last year, the Atlas project drew criticism from a number of prominent scientists who argued that it is a waste of money to catalog the mutations of primary tumors as they are not the chief threat. According to those researchers, the more serious threat are the malignant cells that cause the rapid spread of cancer throughout the body.

- check out the WSJ article

Related Articles:
Scientists form International Cancer Genome Consortium

Scientists criticize $1.5 cancer atlas project

Major research grants headed to sequencing centers

New sequencing project in cancer

Read more about: genetic sequencing, genetics, tumors, Cancer


5. Bioprospecting finds fertile grounds in frozen Arctic

By John Carroll

The extreme Arctic climate has given rise to a new era of bioprospecting in the frigid region. The arctic squirrel, for example, can lower its body temperature below freezing--the only mammal known to do so. And that has led researchers to set out and determine if proteins from the animal can be used to repair stroke damage.  There are a total of 31 known patents for Arctic organisms, and fully two thirds of them are held by U.S. companies. Only three Canadian companies have taken up the hunt, though, while tiny Iceland has 10.

"Bioprospecting is not just for the tropical countries," says international attorney David Leary. And Norway has the world's most advanced Arctic marine biotechnology facilities.

- read the report in the Canadian Press

Read more about: Bioprospecting


Also Noted

Stem Cell Research

A showdown between the board of the Australian Stem Cell Centre and the universities and research institutions that belong to it has led to the mass resignation of all board members. The exodus follows the firing of chief executive Stephen Livesey over their commercial direction. In announcing the move, the board said that the goal of becoming self-financing by 2011 was unrealistic. Report


Implanting embryonic stem cells into the brains of mice developed with MS halted progression of the disease. Story

The World Stem Cell Summit is headed to Madison, WI September 22 and 23. Story

Genetics

The Broad Institute has gained a $400 million endowment to further its work exploring the link between genetics and disease. Some 1,200 researchers at Harvard, MIT and the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research work on Broad Institute projects. Report

After decades of often ineffective work in identifying which toxic therapies could attack cancer, powerful new gene sequencing machines are honing in on which genetic variations trigger cancer--offering a more targeted approach to finding new therapies. Researchers herald this as a new era in cancer research. Story

Scientists have uncovered new evidence that strengthens the link between a host-cell gene called Apobec3 and the production of neutralizing antibodies to retroviruses. Published in the Sept. 5 issue of Science, the finding adds a new dimension to the set of possible explanations for why most people who are infected with HIV do not make neutralizing antibodies that effectively fight the virus. Release


Cancer Research

A German-American scientific team has developed a new method to make gold nanoparticles that can be more effective at fighting cancer. By using ionic liquid as their medium of crystallization they eliminate the need for cytotoxic materials currently used to make the rod-shaped particles needed to kill tumor cells. Report

Reactivating the RUNX3 gene may slow colorectal cancer, according to a team of investigators in Singapore. Report

Regular use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, may reduce serum levels of the prostate biomarker, PSA, and hence may alter the detection of prostate cancer in individuals who take these medications. Release


And Finally...
A study of the Amish shows that plenty of physical activity can overcome a genetic propensity for fat. Article

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