Following is recent medical news with its reference/source : May 14, 2012
1. [Cancer] Study said over 1/6 of cancers caused by infections. For many decades of intensive research, scientist have discovered many infective pathogens which responsible for subsequent malignancy. The potential infectious agents include various kinds of pathogens; virus, bacteria or even parasite for example HPV and cervical cancer, H. pylori and gastric cancer or liver fluke and bile duct cancer. The potential issues are these infections are preventable and treatable. For some infection, vaccine is also available. This study has posted the importance of infectious diseases which have been occasionally neglected.
From: NHS choices
2. [HIV] HIV prevention pill is becoming possible as Travuda is in US FDA consideration. The report said Travuda (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) which is currently used as HIV infection therapy is in an approval stage in the US FDA panel. HIV prevention is useful for high-risk population such as MSM (men who have sex with men). However, some experts concern about its safety, drug-resistant and this prophylaxis might lead to misuse for unsafe sex. The FDA decision will be finalized in mid-June.
From: Medical News Today
3. [Gene therapy]Scientist said hearing loss could be treated with gene therapy. Introduction of Atoh1 gene into inner ear could trigger extra hair cell growth which is responsible for sensory reception for hearing. These extra hair cells are similarly functional as the original hair cells; they will attach and produce electrical activity with the neurons. The treatment will be suitable for aged-related or trauma-related hearing loss. However, the trial is still in animal model. The result also showed gene effectiveness was aged-related which became less effective in older subjects. However, this is a big step for a hearing loss treatment attempt.
4. [Migraine] Botox has been approved for chronic migraine prevention. Botox or botulinum toxin, which is well-known for a cosmetic anti-wrinkle therapy, has shown an impressive effect for chronic migraine prevention. A clinical trial conducted in over 1700 subjects revealed that Botox could successfully reduce headache frequency. Although the mechanism is not clear and this is not a curative treatment. Reducing headache episodes will bring much better quality of life for chronic headache sufferers.
From: BBC news
5. [Alzheimer’s disease] Researcher has found a new way to understand brain cell death in Alzheimer’s disease by studying prion protein. In a late stage of disease, patients will suffer from severe dementia due to massive brain cell death. In novel research, researcher is focusing on prion protein, an abnormal protein which causes mad cow disease. Abnormal protein formation could lead to brain cell death. Researcher is hoping that mechanism in Alzheimer’s brain will be similar to what prion does to brain cell which could lead to invent new treatment for stopping brain damage from progressive cell death.
From: Alzheimer’s Society
6. [Stroke] Recent study outcome revealed a safety use of tPA (tissue plasminogen activator) in acute ischemic stroke in a patient who are currently using warfarin therapy. It is worrisome for a warfarin-treated stroke patient who develop new acute episode of ischemic stroke to receive thrombolytic therapy because of the risk for bleeding tendency. A large clinical trial has shown that tPA was safe for bleeding complication, the incidence of tPA-related side effects were similar for who were currently on warfarin or not. Thrombolytic therapy is necessarily required for acute ischemic stroke management for those who is fulfilled for criteria.
From: Medical News Today