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Saturday, 18 December 2010

India-US to begin collaborative programme in low-cost medical devices

Survival As A Function Of HbA1c In People With Type 2 Diabetes: A Cohort Study

The main objective of this study is to keep the risk of complications in patients with diabetes mellitus (microvascular and macrovascular both) at minimum by keeping blood pressure, blood glucose In a recent study at Cardiff University, United Kingdom, survival as a function of HbA1c in people with type 2 diabetes was assessed. Results of intervention studies in patients with type 2 diabetes led to concerns about the safety of aiming for normal blood glucose concentrations. 
For the study, two groups of patients, aged 50 years and older, with type 2 diabetes were generated from the General Practice Research Database (GPRD), UK from November 1986 to November 2008. For the first group, researchers identified 27,965 patients whose treatment had been increased from oral monotherapy to combination therapy with the help of oral blood-glucose lowering agents. Second group comprised of 20,005 patients who had switched to insulin. During the study, patients with diabetes secondary to other causes were not included. The primary outcome was all-cause mortality. Important confounding factors were age, sex, smoking status, cardiovascular risk, cholesterol, and general morbidity. For these factors Cox survival models were adjusted accordingly. 
For combined groups, in comparison with the glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) decile and the lowest hazard (median HbA1c 7·5%, IQR 7·5—7·6%), the adjusted hazard ratio of all-cause mortality in the lowest HbA1c decile (6·4%, 6·1—6·6) was 1·52 (95% CI 1·32—1·76). 

In the highest HbA1c decile (median 10·5%, IQR 10·1—11·2%) it was 1·79 (95% CI 1·56—2·06). Results indicated a U-shaped association with the lowest hazard ratio at an HbA1c of about 7·5%. HR people who were given insulin-based regimens (2834 deaths) versus those who had combination oral agents (2035) were 1·49 (95% CI 1·39—1·59). 
The results indicated that low and high mean HbA1c values were associated with increased all-cause mortality and cardiac events. Researchers also suggested that diabetes guidelines might need revision to include a minimum HbA1c value. 


Miracles of Turmeric: May Hold Promise For Ischemic Stroke, Traumatic Brain Injury

Two new studies suggest that a compound derived from curry spice turmeric may have clinical promise for ischemic stroke and traumatic brain injury (TBI), which currently lack good therapies. 
A synthetic derivative of turmeric, made by scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, dramatically improved the behavioral and molecular deficits seen in animal models of these conditions.
In previous studies, David R. Schubert, and Pamela Maher in the Salk Cellular Neurobiology Laboratory had developed a series of new compounds using a novel drug discovery paradigm that starts with natural products derived from plants; it then calls for selecting synthetic derivatives that show efficacy in multiple assays testing protection against various aspects of the nerve cell damage and death that occur in brain injuries and in age-associated neurodegenerative diseases.
One compound, called CNB-001, which was derived from curcumin, the active ingredient in the spice turmeric, proved highly neuroprotective in all of the assays; it also enhanced memory in normal animals.
While the Salk group has a great deal of expertise in age-associated neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's, they do not run animal models of TBI and stroke.
"To test the prediction that drugs from our new drug discovery scheme will work in multiple models of CNS disease and trauma," Schubert explains, "we undertook a series of experiments to assay the drugs in collaboration with researchers at Cedars-Sinai and UCLA, who are leaders in the fields of stroke and TBI, respectively, and appreciate the potential for therapeutics based on natural products and their derivatives."



GOOD NEWS FOR HOMEOPATHY:IIT-B team shows how homeopathy works

Six months after the British Medical Association rubbished homeopathy as witchcraft with no scientific basis, IIT scientists have said the sweet white pills work on the principle of nanotechnology. 
Homeopathic pills containing naturally occurring metals such as gold, copper and iron retain their potency even when diluted to a nanometre or one-billionth of a metre, states the IIT-Bombay research published in the latest issue of 'Homeopathy', a peer-reviewed journal from reputed medical publishing firm Elsevier. IIT-B's chemical engineering department bought homeopathic pills from neighbourhood shops, prepared highly diluted solutions and checked these under powerful electron microscopes to find nanoparticles of the original metal.
''Certain highly diluted homeopathic remedies made from metals still contain measurable amounts of the starting material, even at extreme dilutions of 1 part in 10 raised to 400 parts (200C),'' said Dr Jayesh Bellare from the scientific team.
His student, Prashant Chikramane, presented the homeopathy paper titled, 'Extreme homeopathic dilutions retain starting materials: A nanoparticulate perspective', as part of his doctoral thesis.
"Homeopathy has been a conundrum for modern medicine. Its practitioners maintained that homeopathic pills got more potent on dilution, but they could never explain the mechanism scientifically enough for the modern scientists,'' said Bellare.



Friday, 17 December 2010

Bad News for Smokers,who thinks smoking may increase their IQ.

Bad News for Smokers,who thinks smoking may increase their IQ.An old studydirected by Prof. Mark Weiser of Tel Aviv University's Department of Psychiatry and the Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer Hospital found that smokers have lower IQ.
He has conducted his study on 18 to 21 yrs old men working in the Israeli army.
The study discovered that average IQ of a non-smoker was about 101, while smoker's average was about 94. The IQ of a smoker who can smoke more than a packet in a day lie around 90.
Prof. Weiser said that our study is based on socio-economic factors relating to a smoker. It is generally believed that a person who gets addicted to smoking is either not grown up in a healthy and peaceful environment or is less educated or does not get a good company in his younger age.
This study also tracked two twin brothers, in this case one of the twin smoked and he registered lower IQ on average than the non-smoker twin.
During study most of the smokers investigated were found with average range of IQs.
Researchers took data from more than 20,000 men, some of them had left army, some of them are in army and some of them are planning to join army. During this investigation it was found that all men acquire good health, since they had to keep their health according to the norms of army. Researchers found few surprising results, 28 percent are sample smokers smoking one or more cigarettes in a day, 3 percent are ex-smokers and 68 percent are non-smokers.
Although people with lower IQ suggest greater risk for smoking and give less importance to their health and display poor decision making skill.
Prof. Weiser adds that people with lower IQ are also prone to obesity, faces nutrition and narcotics issues. Our study may help the parents, health professionals to help young men to skip smoking and adapt some other better choices.

Smokers are 7 Times More Likely to Get Lung Cancer Than Non-Smokers, Says Study

A recent study by National University of Singapore (NUS) has shown that smokers are seven times more likely than non-smokers to get lung cancer. 
After tracking 45,900 Chinese from 1993 to 2007, the study also found that six years is all it takes to dramatically cut a smoker's risk of getting the disease, The Straits Times reported.
Six years after quitting, an ex-smoker's chance of getting cancer is 28 percent less than someone who is still smoking, reports
Those who continue to stay off cigarettes have their risk of getting lung cancer halved. In other words, for every two smokers who get cancer, only one non-smoker would.
The Singapore Chinese study started with more than 63,000 people.
At the time of recruitment, they were between 45 and 65 of age.
About 75 percent of those studied for the lung cancer project or 33,292 people had never smoked. These non-smokers accounted for only 25.5 percent of the 463 people in the group of 45,900 who got lung cancer by 2007.


Natural Home Remedies

Have you ever heard that onion family as natural home remedies can be useful also to tackle your common dilemmas around household?
Here below the 8 effective ways to ease your life at minimum cost and it is so exciting being back to nature by making use of what you have in your kitchen!
1] Make mosquito repellent
Some people find that increasing their intake of onions or garlic in the summer — or rubbing a slice of onion over their exposed skin — is a good way to keep away mosquitoes and other biting insects (not to mention friends and family).
2] To banish itchy and swollen from mosquito bite
Shallots are very effective to banish annoying itchy and to prevent scabies due to mosquito bite. Take 1 shallot and cut it into 2 pieces, then rub them over our skin where has been bitten by mosquito. Definitely you will enjoy the result because those swollen and itchy because of mosquito bite would go away for good.
3] Remove rust from knives
Forget about using steel wool or harsh chemicals — how’s this for an easy way to get the rust off your kitchen or utility knives? Plunge your rusty knife into a large onion three or four times (if it’s very rusty, it may require a few extra stabs). The only tears you shed will be ones of joy over your rust-free blade.
4] Eliminate new paint smell
Your bedroom’s new shade of paint looks great, but the smell is keeping you up all night. What to do? Place several freshly cut slices of onion in a dish with a bit of water. It will absorb the smell within a few hours.
5] Correct pet “mistakes”
If Rover or Kitty is still not respecting your property — whether it is by chewing, tearing, or soiling — you may be able to get the message across by leaving several onion slices where the damage has been done. Neither cats nor dogs are particularly fond of “eau de onion,” and they’ll avoid returning to the scene of their crimes.
6] Soothe a bee sting
If you have a nasty encounter with a bee at a barbecue, grab one of the onion slices intended for your burger and place it over the area where you got stung. It will ease the soreness. (If you are severely allergic to bee or other insect stings, seek medical attention at once).
7] Use as smelling salts
If you happen to be with someone at a party or in a restaurant who feels faint — and you don’t normally carry smelling salts in your pocket — reach for a freshly cut onion. The strong odor is likely to bring him around.
8] Use as a natural pesticide
Whip up an effective insect and animal repellent for the flowers and vegetables in your garden. In a blender, puree 4 onions, 2 cloves garlic, 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper, and 1 quart water (1 liter). Set the mixture aside. Now dilute 2 tablespoons soap flakes in 2 gallons (7.5 liters) water. Pour in the contents of your blender, shake or stir well, and you have a potent, environment-friendly solution to spray on your plants.Now you know some secrets about onion family to simplify your day to day difficulties. Since you and I believe in the wisdom of global sharing, please do not hesitate to disclose your secrets with onion family with all of us here by leaving it in the comment section below.
It must be fantastic to reveal our secrets, because helping others is healthy!
SourceReader’s Digest & Kartini Magazine

Garlic Protects Women Against Hip Osteoarthritis

The importance of Garlic and Onion is mentioned in Ayurvedic Texts.Now this fact is supported by a new Research.Women who consume a diet high in allium vegetables, such as garlic, onions and leeks, have lower levels of hip osteoarthritis, suggests a new study. 
The findings, by researchers at King's College London and the University of East Anglia, not only highlight the possible effects of diet in protecting against osteoarthritis, but also show the potential for using compounds found in garlic to develop treatments for the condition.
A relationship between body weight and osteoarthritis was previously recognised, although it is not yet completely understood. This study is the first of its kind to delve deeper into the dietary patterns and influences that could impact on development and prevention of the condition. 

Osteoarthritis causes pain and disability by affecting the hip, knees and spine in the middle-aged and elderly population. Currently there is no effective treatment other than pain relief and, ultimately, joint replacement. 
The study looked at over 1,000 healthy female twins, many of whom had no symptoms of arthritis. 
The team carried out a detailed assessment of the diet patterns of the twins and analysed these alongside x-ray images, which captured the extent of early osteoarthritis in the participants' hips, knees and spine.


Food Borne Illnesses Cost Billions of Dollars Annually

The latest health survey in the United States has revealed that billions of dollars are being spent on illnesses occurring due to food borne diseases which also account for an annual death rate of more than 3,000. 
The government survey, a first in more than a decade, was carried out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention amid reports that the Congress is thinking of overhauling the food safety regulations before the end of the current session.
According to the report, more than 15 percent of Americans suffering from some form of food borne disease with nearly 130,000 hospitalized each year with more than 3,000 people dying due to the diseases.
CDC’s Christopher Braden says that while majority of the people may recover from the immediate effects of such diseases, some people continue to experience long term effects of the diseases late in their life.
“We've made progress in better understanding the burden of food-borne illness and unfortunately, far too many people continue to get sick from the food they eat”, CDC Director Thomas Frieden said.


Thursday, 16 December 2010

Malaria Deaths can end by 2015:Ray Chambers (Secretory General's special Envoy for Malaria)

A massive scale-up in malaria control programmes between 2008 and 2010 has resulted in the provision of enough Insecticide-Treated mosquitoNets (ITNs) to protect more than 578 million people at risk of malaria
in sub-Saharan Africa. Indoor residual spraying has also protected 75million people, or 10 per cent of the population at risk in 2009. TheWorld malaria report 2010 describes how the drive to provide access to anti-malarial interventions to all those who need them, called for by theUN Secretary-General in 2008, is producing results.In Africa, a total of 11 countries showed a greater than 50% reductionin either confirmed malaria cases or malaria admissions and deaths over the past decade. A decrease of more than 50% in the number of confirmed cases of malaria was also found in 32 of the 56 malaria-endemiccountries outside Africa during this same time period, while downward trends of 25%-50% were seen in eight additional countries. Morocco
and Turkmenistan were certified by the Director-General of WHO in
2009 as having eliminated malaria. In 2009, the WHO European Region
reported no cases of Plasmodium falciparum malaria for the first time.
The WHO Director-General, Dr Margaret Chan, highlighted the
transformation that is taking place, "The results set out in this report
 are the best seen in decades. After so many years of deterioration
and stagnation in the malaria situation, countries and their development
 partners are now on the offensive. Current strategies work."
"The phenomenal expansion in access to malaria control interventions
 is translating directly into lives saved, as the WHO World malaria
 report 2010 clearly indicates," said Ray Chambers, the UN
Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Malaria. "The strategic
 scale-up that is eroding malaria's influence is a critical step in the effort
 to combat poverty-related health threats. By maintaining these essential
gains, we can end malaria deaths by 2015."
The strategies to fight malaria continue to evolve. Earlier this year, WHO
 recommended that all suspected cases of malaria be confirmed by a
diagnostic test before anti-malarial drugs are administered. It is no
longer appropriate to assume that every person with a fever has malaria
and needs anti-malarial treatment. Inexpensive, quality-assured rapid
 diagnostic tests are now available that can be used by all health care
 workers, including at peripheral health facilities and at the community
 level. Using these tests improves the quality of care for individual
patients, cuts down the over-prescribing of Artemisinin-based
Combination Therapies (ACTs) and guards against the spread
of resistance to these medicines.
While progress in reducing the burden of malaria has been remarkable,
resurgences in cases were observed in parts of at least three African
countries (Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, and Zambia). The reasons
 for these resurgences are not known with certainty but illustrate the
 fragility of malaria control and the need to maintain intervention coverage
 even if numbers of cases have been reduced substantially.
The report stressed that while considerable progress has been made,
 much work remains in order to attain international targets for malaria control.
Financial disbursements reached their highest ever levels in 2009 at
 US$ 1.5 billion, but new commitments for malaria control appear
to have levelled-off in 2010, at US$ 1.8 billion. The amounts committed
to malaria, while substantial, still fall short of the resources required for
malaria control, estimated at more than US$ 6 billion for the year 2010.
In 2010, more African households (42%) owned at least one ITN, and
more children under five years of age were using an ITN (35%)
compared to previous years. Household ITN ownership reached
more than 50% in 19 African countries. The percentage of children
 using ITNs is still below the World Health Assembly target of 80%
partly because up to the end of 2009, ITN ownership remained low
 in some of the largest African countries.
The proportion of reported cases in Africa confirmed with a diagnostic
test has risen substantially from less than 5% at the beginning of the
 decade to approximately 35% in 2009, but low rates persist in the
majority of African countries and in a minority of countries in other regions.
By the end of 2009, 11 African countries were providing sufficient courses
of ACTs to cover more than 100% of malaria cases seen in the public
sector; a further 5 African countries delivered sufficient courses to treat
 50%-100% of cases. These figures represent a substantial increase
since 2005, when only five countries were providing sufficient courses
 of ACT to cover more than 50% of patients treated in the public sector.
The number of deaths due to malaria is estimated to have decreased from
 985 000 in 2000 to 781 000 in 2009. Decreases in malaria deaths have
 been observed in all WHO regions, with the largest proportional decreases
 noted in the European Region, followed by the Region of the Americas.
The largest absolute decreases in deaths were observed in Africa.
In summary, the report highlights the importance of maintaining the
 momentum for malaria prevention, control, and elimination that has
 developed over the past decade. While the significant recent gains
are fragile, they must be sustained. It is critical that the international
community ensure sufficient and predictable funding to meet the
ambitious targets set for malaria control as part of the drive to
reach the health-related Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

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