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Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Pfizer Vice President Blows The Whistle & Tells The Truth About The Pharmaceutical Industry

Below is a clip taken from the “One More Girl” documentary, a film regarding the Gardasil vaccine, which was designed to prevent Human Papillomavirus. In it, Dr. Peter Rost, MD, a former vice president of one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world (Pfizer), shares the truth about the ties between the medical and pharmaceutical industry.
Screen Shot 2015-07-06 at 11.28.13 AMRost is a former vice president of Pfizer, and a whistleblower of the entire pharmaceutical industry in general. He is the author of “The Whistleblower, Confessions of a Healthcare Hitman.” Considering his work experience, it would be an understatement to say that he is an insider expert on big pharma marketing.
Below are a couple of quotes from both a former and a current editor-in-chief of the two largest, and what are considered to be the most credible, medical journals in the world. It’s only fitting to include them into the article as they are directly related to what Dr. Rost hints at in the video.
“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of the New England Journal of Medicine.”  – Dr. Marcia Angell, a physician and longtime editor-in-chief of the New England Medical Journal (NEMJ)  
“The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness.”  – Dr. Richard Horton, the current editor-in-chief of the Lancet – considered to be one of the most well respected peer-reviewed medical journals in the world. 

It’s Time To Re-Think Current Medical Research & See The Bigger Picture

In 2005 Dr. John P.A. Ioannidis, currently a professor in disease prevention at Stanford University, published the most widely accessed article in the history of the Public Library of Science (PLoS) entitled Why Most Published Research Findings Are False. In the report he states:
“There is increasing concern that most current published research findings are false.”
We now have a large amount of evidence, and statements from experts that come directly from the field, which paint a very concerning picture. The science used to educate doctors and develop medicine is flawed. We are only ever exposed to studies that have been sponsored by big pharmaceutical companies, but these studies are not designed to take the long view. They are not designed to detect problems that can occur years or even decades after a treatment, or examine the risks of taking a drug for long periods of time. Nobody ever seems to mention or acknowledge the many studies which clearly show significant risk associated with many of the products that pharmaceutical companies are manufacturing to help fight disease.
What is even more concerning is the general population’s lack of awareness when it comes to these facts. This issue is definitely not going to be addressed in the mainstream news, and despite plenty of evidence to support it, some people will refuse to even look at or acknowledge that it exists. This is a big problem, our world is changing and we must keep an open mind and be open to new possibilities regarding the nature of our world. It’s 2015, and as we keep moving forward there will be more information coming out that challenges the deeply held, engrained belief systems of many. It’s okay to look at information that goes against what you believe, in fact, it’s needed if we are going to move forward and create a better world for ourselves.
You would think the statements above the video, from longtime editors of such major, peer-reviewed scientific journals (apparently, the best in the world) would at least get some mainstream attention.
When Dr. Rost was still working for Pfizer he had a couple of appearances in the mainstream media. Here is an example of him speaking with the Wall Street Journal almost 10 years ago, before he blew the whistle.
This is why alternative media is important, especially in a time where more and more people are waking up to what is really happening on our planet.
It’s time to examine the research that’s being conducted all over the world, from experts (scientists) at various institutions, that is not sponsored by these giant, multinational “health” corporations – the independent literature. Brilliant work is being published regarding various drugs, cures, treatments, vaccines, and more.
Thanks for reading, and I hope the video above gives you something to think about.

WSU researchers find online program helps people with chronic pain

-Washington State University researchers have found that people can manage chronic pain and reduce their reliance on opioids through an Internet-based program that teaches non-medical alternatives like increased physical activity, thinking more positively and dealing with emotions.
Marian Wilson, an assistant professor in the College of Nursing, tracked 43 people with chronic non-cancer pain as they went through an eight-week course of online tools to manage psychological, social and health issues associated with chronic pain. Compared to a similar-sized control group, the participants reported that they adopted more practices to change negative thinking patterns and use relaxation techniques to help control pain.
"With negative emotions, you often have that physical response of tension," said Wilson. "So we really want people with pain to learn they have control and mastery over some of those physical symptoms. Meditation and relaxation can help with that."
Such techniques are hard for patients to get in traditional care settings but can go a long way to make them more confident about managing their pain, she said. Several studies have found that such confidence, called "self-efficacy," is linked to a higher quality of life, the ability to return to work and higher levels of activity, she said.
"Maybe that pain is never going to go away but you can divert your attention from it," said Wilson. "You can focus on more positive things and you can absolutely get that thought on a back burner rather than fixating on it."
She found that four out of five online program participants made progress toward goals to reduce or eliminate pain or other unspecified medications, as opposed to roughly half the control group.
"Unique to our study was the discovery that more appropriate use of opioid medicines could be an unintended consequence of participation," Wilson and her colleagues write in the journal Pain Management Nursing.
The authors note that 60 percent of the more than 15,000 opioid-overdose deaths each year in the United States are from medications obtained through legitimate prescriptions. Opioids also can become less effective over time while actually increasing a user's perception of pain.
"For many patients, more and more evidence is coming out that if we can get them off the opiates, or reduce their use and help them become more active, they'll actually feel better," Wilson said. "Plus they won't be at risk for death from opioid overdose, which they're at risk for now because you often have to keep increasing the opioid dose to get the same pain relief."
Study participants used the Goalistics Chronic Pain Management Program developed by psychologists Linda Ruehlman and Paul Karoly. While Ruehlman helped register participants and shared program data, the two had no say in the design of the study or the interpretation of results. The study was funded by the Washington State Life Sciences Discovery Fund.
Wilson did the study as part of her doctoral dissertation. Her co-authors are John Roll, WSU Spokane senior vice chancellor and principal investigator, and fellow nursing faculty members Cynthia Corbett and Celestina Barbosa-Leiker.

New Insights into Premature Aging and DNA Damage

Scientists suggest that a molecule called interferon may play a role in premature aging. They found that DNA damage that is normally associated with aging stimulates interferon signaling, which in turn may cause features of premature aging.

As far back in history as one can look, the human mind has been preoccupied with the pursuit of eternal life, immortality, longevity and youth. While such pursuits have for the most part been futile, science has revealed a lot when it comes to the natural process of aging. With the advances made in modern medicine and the overall quality of life, the human lifespan has been greatly increased, but this has brought with it the problem of aging. Length of life is not worth much if it is severely compromised by the degenerative effects of aging and this is a problem that scientists have been struggling to tackle. A study at the University of Pennsylvania suggests that researchers may have just made a breakthrough. 

The Effects of Aging Explained - Damage to DNA causes Aging

Damage to DNA has been an unavoidable part of the aging process that occurs over time, and as we age the body's ability to repair such damage also begins to diminish, resulting in a cumulative effect. This effect is seen as aging. Scientists postulated that over time, the extent of damage reaches a point where cells enter an irreversible and dormant state known as senescence. This condition of cellular senescence is said to cause the symptoms that we associate with aging such as weakened bones, wrinkling of the skin with a loss of elasticity and reduced efficiency in organ functioning. 

Progeria is a condition in which the individual experiences premature aging and this is also linked with DNA damage. It results from genetic mutations in the specific genes that normally determine the repair of damaged DNA. Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have now established a molecular link between the phenomena of DNA damage and cellular senescence, and progeria or premature aging.

Findings of the Study and Implications

Double stranded DNA breaks ramp up interferon signaling. 

Once the key players in the process are identified, scientists will be able to establish specific therapeutic targets so as to counter the ill effects of premature aging and they may even hold the key to delaying the natural effects of the aging process. According to the paper published in 'Cell Reports', the researchers examined the chemical messenger interferon, which is a naturally produced molecule in the body. It is produced as a response to the onslaught of invading pathogens. The team at Penn found that interferon signaling ramps up in response to breaks in double stranded DNA and they found that this signaling is what prompts the cells to enter senescence. 

The researchers were initially uncertain about the role of interferon signaling and whether it was DNA damage in itself or some other unknown aspect of cell destruction that led to interferon induction. The experiment finally gave researchers an insight into the effect of DNA damage on interferon signaling. They found that interferon protein IFNβ levels rose along with levels of a reporter molecule tied to interferon production when DNA damage with double-stranded breaks in DNA were created using an experimental technique. Levels of IFNβ were also found to be markedly higher in older patients with progerias and also in mice with a progeria-like condition. 

Blocking the interferon signaling pathways reduced signs of aging. 
The researchers experimented with a model of progeria in mice, wherein they inactivated the interferon signaling pathways. What this revealed could turn out to be a game changer. By inactivating these pathways, they found that the lives of the mice were extended. In addition, the mice were more fertile, there was less greying of the hair and they were also a lot more robust, large and healthy, as compared to mice with active interferon pathways. The significance of these findings became apparent to the researches as they recognized that some of the effects of DNA damage could possibly be managed through blocking interferon signaling. 

The researchers found that IFNβ blocking drugs could help to lower the number of cells entering senescence, which also made it apparent that senescence was triggered by interferon signaling. 

The researchers did studies in mice which lacked the Terc gene. The Terc gene is necessary for DNA repair and stem cell function and therefore mice lacking this gene show premature aging. The researchers found that mice that lacked the Terc gene and interferon receptors showed less signs of aging as compared to those who lacked only the Terc gene. 

Significance of the Findings

These findings are significant because they help us develop a better understanding of the aging process and the effects of cell damage and degeneration. While the study at present does not offer much by way of preventing the effects of aging, it could usher in novel therapies to prevent some of the effects of accelerated aging and eventually it may even throw light on solutions to mitigate some of the effects of normal aging. 
Source:University of Pennsylvania 

Protein Molecule That Accumulates in Blood Over the Years Linked to Cognitive Decline

Aging is associated with a progressive decline in cognitive function, and slower regeneration of message-relaying neurons in the brain. A protein molecule, called B2M, that accumulates in the blood with age may be linked to cognitive decline, revealed scientists who mooted hopes of a memory-restoring treatment. They observed that the protein was found in higher concentrations in the blood and cerebral spinal fluid of aging humans. Also in mice, inhibiting B2M improved learning and memory in laboratory experiments.

Study co-author Saul Villeda of the University of California San Francisco said, "We are very excited about the findings because it indicates that there are two ways to potentially reverse age-related cognitive impairments. One is to introduce pro-youthful blood factors and the other is to therapeutically target pro-aging factors like B2M." 

The authors said, "Aging remains the most dominant risk factor for dementia-related neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease. As such, it is imperative to gain mechanistic insight into what drives aging. In the brain in order to counteract vulnerability to cognitive dysfunction. B2M injections impaired the learning ability, memory, and neuron growth of lab mice. But the effect was reversible by stopping the injections."

Villeda said, "In another experiment, the scientists eliminated B2M genetically in mice, and observed that the old mice lacking B2M did not develop memory loss. This all implied the molecule could be targeted to potentially restore cognitive ability in the elderly."

The research is published in the Nature Medicine.

Source: AFP


Monday, 6 July 2015

Most People Don’t Know They Have The Precursor to Type 2 Diabetes

Only one in eight people with pre-diabetes are aware that they have the condition, says a new research. They are less likely to make lifestyle changes to prevent the onset of diabetes.

Researchers at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center focused on hemoglobin A1c test - a common diabetes test to measure the average blood sugar level. 

A1c levels between 5.7 and 6.4 are considered elevated, though not yet diabetic. The study found that 2,694 adults who had elevated blood sugar levels fell just short of diabetes. Only 288 of those people were aware that they had pre-diabetes. 

People who were aware of their condition were 30 percent more likely to be physically active and 80 percent were more likely to focus on weight loss. 

According to the World Health Organization, about one in nine adults are diabetic and the disease will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2030. 

"People with pre-diabetes who lose a modest amount of weight and increase their physical activity are less likely to develop diabetes. Our study importantly shows that individuals with pre-diabetes who were aware of this diagnosis were more likely to engage in some of these effective and recommended healthy lifestyle changes," said, lead study author Dr. Anjali Gopalan, a researcher at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center.

The researchers emphasized that it is important that doctors tell their patients with pre-diabetes what that means and encourage them to change their lifestyle habits to avoid developing type 2 diabetes. 


Tel Aviv & Harvard Universities Develop New Technology that Replenishes Skin’s Collagen

A non-invasive technique that harnesses pulsed electric fields to generate new skin tissue has been developed by researchers.

A team of researchers from Tel Aviv University (TAU) and Harvard Medical School developed the novel non-invasive technique that utilizes microsecond-pulsed, high voltage, non-thermal electric fields to produce scar-free skin rejuvenation. 

Lead researcher Alexander Golberg from TAU, said, "Our new application may jumpstart the secretion of new collagen and capillaries in problematic skin areas."

In the US since 2000, Botulium toxin, commonly known as botox, has been used to soothe lines and wrinkles to rejuvenate aging face. But botox injections are temporary and carry many risks, some neurological, said researchers. 

Current treatment to rejuvenate skin use physical and chemical methods to affect cells and extracellular matrix, but they induce scars. 

The new technique, pulse electric field technology affects only the cell membrane and preserves the extracellular matrix and releases multiple growth factors to spark new cell and tissue growth.

Pulse electric fields induce nanoscale defects on the cell membrane that cause the death of a small number of cells in affected areas. The released growth factors increase the metabolism of the remaining cells, generating new tissue.  

"The technique may revolutionize the treatment of degenerative skin diseases, researchers said. Pulsed electrical field technology has many advantages, which have already proved effective - for example, in food preservation, tumor removal, and wound disinfection," said Golberg.

To test the safety and efficacy if the technology in humans, researchers are developing a lo-cost device for use in clinical trials. 

The findings are published in the journal Scientific Reports. 


Ancient Herbal Therapy may Help Protect Heart from Hypertrophy: Indian Scientist

Indian scientist Mahesh Gupta, director of the Cardiac Cell Biology Research Program at University of Chicago has claimed that ancient herbal therapy can protect the heart from hypertrophy.

Hypertrophy is a thickening of cardiac muscle often caused by chronic high blood pressure that can lead to heart failure. Gupta said that they found the natural compound, honokiol, derived from the bark of the magnolia tree activates SIRT3, a protective protein associated with delayed aging, stress resistance and metabolic regulation. 

When injected into mice, it reduced the excess growth of individual cardiac muscle cells, decreased ventricular wall thickness and prevented the accumulation of interstitial fibrosis, a stiffening of cardiac muscle cells that reduces their ability to contract. It also protected heart muscle cells from the damage caused by oxidative stress, which can damage DNA.

It even mitigated pre-existing cardiac hypertrophy, he added. The results, the authors wrote, suggest pharmacological activation of SIRT3 by honokiol could be "a potential therapeutic strategy to prevent adverse cardiac remodeling and other diseases associated with abnormal cellular growth and organ fibrosis." 

Gupta said that they were working to design a clinical trial involving patients with cardiac hypertrophy and potentially other metabolic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes. 

The study is reported in the online journal Nature Communications.

Source: ANI


Simply observing men with very low- and low-risk prostate cancer very effective and underused

Monitoring men with very low- and low-risk prostate cancers using watchful waiting or active surveillance, called expectant management, is a useful approach for a large number of men with localized tumors and could spare them the debilitating side effects of aggressive treatments that are too often unnecessarily used in this patient population, a UCLA review of common practices in prostate cancer has found.
IMAGESince the initiation of PSA screening tests, most men with prostate cancer are now diagnosed with localized, low-risk prostate tumors that are unlikely to kill them. However, nearly all of these men undergo surgery or radiation, putting them at risk for ongoing side effects such as erectile dysfunction and impaired urinary function. As many as 40 percent of patients may currently be overtreated, said review senior author Dr. Mark Litwin, professor and chair of UCLA Urology.
"This study is the most up-to-date and comprehensive review of expectant management of prostate cancer patients worldwide. This represents an important resource for patients and providers considering surveillance for prostate cancer," Litwin said. "Active surveillance and other observational strategies have produced excellent, long-term disease-specific survival and minimal morbidity for men with prostate cancer. Despite this, expectant management remains underused for men with localized prostate cancer."
The study appears in the July/August 2015 issue of the peer-reviewed journal CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.
The review clearly lays out a number of aspects of expectant management for men with low-risk prostate cancer. First, the UCLA team clarified the definitions of types of surveillance, making it easier for physicians and their patients to decide which is best for them. Active surveillance uses repeated PSA testing and prostate biopsies to monitor for development of more aggressive disease in younger, healthier patients who might benefit from delaying treatment. Watchful waiting avoids aggressive testing and watches for any physical symptoms of progressive disease. It is generally reserved for avoiding treatment altogether for older, sicker patients who will most likely die from something else.
The review describes the current surveillance protocols, and reviews the outcomes for each of these strategies in terms of cancer survival and quality of life. Additionally the review addresses the novel technologies such as prostate MRI and fusion biopsies that may prove beneficial for surveillance patients.
"Considerable questions remain regarding both the identification of optimal candidates for surveillance, as well as understanding the ideal monitoring strategy after the initiation of observational protocols," said Dr. Leonard Marks, study co-author and a professor of urology. "Using strict inclusion criteria for very low-risk or low-risk prostates cancer can select a group of prostate cancer patients for active surveillance who would avoid the side effects of therapy while experiencing comparable survival and quality of life."
Going forward, Marks said, more work is required to optimize the delivery of these expectant management strategies for patients treated in certain settings that may not have incorporated active surveillance into their treatment repertoire. Despite increased adoption of expectant management, active surveillance still remains broadly underused and more data will be needed to clarify the factors contributing to this finding at a population level.
Prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men aside from skin cancer. An estimated 233,000 new cases of prostate cancer will occur in the United States in 2015. Of those, nearly 30,000 men will die. It's estimated that more than two million prostate cancer survivors are living in the United States today.
"Ultimately, the decision-making process surrounding treatment for a man with localized prostate cancer must take an individualized approach. The risks and benefits of expectant management vis-a-vis active treatment should be reviewed with the patient in light of existing knowledge, potentially with the use of decision aids to help enable a truly shared decision-making process," the review states. "Active surveillance is a viable approach for most men with low-risk prostate cancer, and its broader adoption has the potential to stop the overtreatment of men with indolent lesions and redirect resources to men with more serious cancers."

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