January 26, 2012

To Fight World's Killer Diseases

1 Bill Gates Pledges $750 Mil to Global Fund

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged $750 million to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, a health organization that has been beset by allegations of corruption and a decrease in donations. "These are tough economic times, but that is no excuse for cutting aid to the world's poorest,” says Gates who downplayed the corruption allegations. Since its inception 10 years ago, the fund has provided antiretroviral treatment to 3.3 million people, treated 8.2 million people with tuberculosis and given 230 million bed nets to families to prevent malaria. Michel Kazatchkine, France’s former AIDS ambassador, will resign as executive dir. of the Fund amid political controversy. However, allegations of favoritism levied against him have been found baseless.

More at Www.online.WSJ.com | Hat tip to www.ft.com | Posted 6 years ago by Melody Lesser

Previously: Zapping Mosquitos with Lasers to Control Malaria

Tags: AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis, World Health, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The Global Fund, Michel Kazatchkine, World Diseases

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (50%) / No! (50%)

Read, Write & Play Games

2 Fight Alzheimer's with an Active Brain

A new study indicates that keeping your brain active by doing things like reading, writing, and playing games can reduce the levels of protein that form amyloid plaque, which is used by doctors and researchers to identify Alzheimer’s Disease. PET scans done on the study group, which consisted of 75 people plus 11 control subjects, revealed that past cognitive activity was associated with lower amyloid deposits, while physical activity had little effect. However, only the previous two weeks had been used to assess physical activity and that could have affected the results. Susan Landau of U.C. Berkeley’s Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute, says she hopes the findings will spur research in preventing or eliminating the brain deposits.

More at CNN Health | Posted 6 years ago by Marty Shaw

Previously: Alzheimer's Blood Test CloserTo Reality

Tags: Alzheimer's Disease, Amyloid Plaque, Mental Health

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (43%) / No! (57%)

Is It You or the Doctor?

3 Physician Weight Affects Obesity Diagnosis

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) obesity affects more than one-third of the U.S. adult population, but a new study reveals those results might not be entirely accurate. While a patient’s body mass index (BMI) is used an indicator for obesity, your doctor’s own weight might also play a role. According to the study, some doctors with a normal BMI are more likely to talk with patients about weight loss and more likely to give a diagnosis of obesity if the patient’s BMI is equal to or greater than their own. Meanwhile, obese doctors are more likely to prescribe weight loss medication and also more likely to report success in helping patients lose weight.

More at Medical Xpress | Posted 6 years ago by Marty Shaw

Tags: BMI, Body Mass Index, Obesity, Weight Loss, Physician Care

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (44%) / No! (56%)

Home Births Are Modern

4 More Moms Are Giving Birth at Home

More mothers are choosing to give birth at home, says the National Center for Health Statistics. Their report shows a 29 percent jump in home births from 2004 to 2009. Home births, accounting for 1 percent of births, are now considered more modern, Marian MacDorman of the CDC tells CNN. According to the report, one in 90 non-Hispanic white women give birth at home. Home births are more common in women older than 35 who've already had one child. While the data doesn't reveal why more women are giving birth at home, MacDorman thinks that cost may be an issue. Home births cost a third less. Another potential reason for the increase is dissatisfaction with hospital care. While women who have hospital births may share providers, women giving birth at home don't share the midwife.

More at CNN | Posted 6 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Tags: National Center for Health Statistics, Number Home Births Rising, Home Births Up 29 Percent, Home Versus Home Birth, Home Birth Saves Money, Choosing the Midwife

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (45%) / No! (55%)

Stacey Finds Out

5 What Happens If You Only Eat Chicken Nuggets

Parents don't have to make up a story about what would happen if you eat only chicken nuggets instead of healthy food. Stacey Irvine, 17, collapsed recently from her 15-year-long diet consisting of mostly just chicken nuggets. She says that she first tasted chicken nuggets at McDonald's when she was 2 years old and she loved them so much she hasn't been able to eat anything else. Stacey is suffering from anemia and swollen veins in her tongue. According to the UK's The Sun, Stacey loves McDonald's chicken nuggets, but she'll also eat KFC and supermarket brands. In addition to eating some fries with her chicken nuggets, Stacey will sometimes have a slice of toast for breakfast along with chips. Stacey's mother, 39, said, "It breaks my heart to see her eating those damned nuggets."

More at The Sun | Posted 6 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: McDonald's White Meat Chicken McNuggets

Tags: Girl Who Only Ate Chicken Nuggets, Causes Anemia, Swollen Veins Tongue, Strange Diets, Stacey Irvine

Read the Comments (4) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (52%) / No! (48%)

Education Also a Factor

6 Men Have Higher Rates of Cognitive Impairment

According to new research from the Mayo Clinic, men are more likely than women to develop a condition known as “Mild Cognitive Impairment,” or MCI. The Mayo Clinic Study of Aging included data from Minnesota men aged 70 to 89 that were cognitively normal at baseline. About one in every five developed MCI, with or without memory deficit, within three or four years. The finding is “not a small thing” according to Kenneth Rockwood MD who wrote an editorial accompanying the study published in the journal Neurology. MCI is a confirmed risk factor for progression to dementia, however, women ultimately tend to have a higher risk of actual Alzheimer’s disease. In addition to gender, education level was also a factor, with those having completed fewer years at greater risk.

More at Med Page Today | Hat tip to Emaxhealth | Posted 6 years ago by Denise Reynolds

Previously: Insulin Improves Memory in Early Alzheimers

Tags: Alzheimers, Alzheimers Disease, Memory Loss, Men's Health, Mild Cognitive Impairment

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (48%) / No! (52%)

Approved for Other Cancers

7 Two Drugs Increase Breast Cancer Stem Cells

A new study in mice with breast cancer found that Sutent (sunitinib) and Avastin (bevacizumab), which fight several cancer types by blocking blood vessel growth, increase the number of breast cancer stem cells. Initially, the drugs shrink breast cancer tumors and slow their growth, but eventually stop working. In the mice treated with either drug, there were more stem cells and they made up a bigger part of the tumor in response to low oxygen levels. Typically a small number of cancer stem cells exist to promote the tumor’s growth and do not respond to standard therapies. Avastin was approved to treat breast cancer but no longer is because the benefits lasted a short time, the relapses were more aggressive and survival was not improved.

More at Science Daily | Posted 6 years ago by Kristie Hayes

Previously: FDA: Avastin Shouldn't Be Used for Breast Cancer

Tags: Avastin, Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer Stem Cells, Stem Cells, Sunitinib, Sutent, Bevacizumab

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (49%) / No! (51%)

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