Biotechnology

Nearly a quarter of antibiotic prescriptions for children and adults may be unnecessary

One in 10 children and about one in six adults with private insurance received antibiotics they didn’t need at least once in 2016, a new Michigan Medicine study suggests. Overall, 1 in 7 patients received unnecessary antibiotics, researchers found. Among outpatient antibiotic prescription fills by 19.2 million privately insured U.S. children and adults ages 18-64 in 2016, 23 percent were not medically justified, 36 percent were potentially appropriate, and 28
Biotechnology

New Breakthroughs Offer Hope for Patients with Cystic Fibrosis to Breathe Easier

Two preliminary trials have found that either of two triple-drug regimens could potentially benefit 90 percent of people with cystic fibrosis. The short-term trials found that the drug combinations improved adult patients' lung function over four weeks. But experts said they were optimistic the results will hold up in the larger, longer-term trials already underway. Researchers point to a  triple-drug approach could open up new options to nearly all cystic
Breast Cancer cancer

Innovative regional anesthesia technique reduces pain, opioid use after mastectomy for breast cancer

Women undergoing mastectomy for breast cancer experience improved postsurgical pain relief and reduced opioid consumption when given a pectoralis nerve plane (PECS) block prior to surgery, suggests research presented at the ANESTHESIOLOGY® 2018 annual meeting. The PECS block is a newer regional anesthesia technique that works by injecting long-acting anesthetics, guided by ultrasound, to numb the front of the chest wall before surgical incision. “Physician anesthesiologists are reassessing pain management strategies due
Pharmaceuticals

Pain Rehab Programs without Opioids Proving Effective

American Pain Society Study Reports Significant Quality of Life Improvements New research, published this month by the American Pain Society (APS), adds to burgeoning scientific evidence showing that interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation programs are an effective alternative to opioids for chronic pain management.  Despite several studies documenting favorable outcomes, access to multi-modal pain management programs remains out of reach for most patients due to inadequate insurance coverage.  This discourages providers from
Cancer Discovery

Accelerating the Development of Next-Generation Cancer Therapies

To accelerate the development of next-generation cancer therapies, the Gene Editing Institute of the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute at Christiana Care Health System has agreed to provide genetically modified cell lines to Analytical Biological Services, Inc. (ABS) of Wilmington, Delaware. Under a three-year agreement, the Gene Editing Institute will act as sole provider of gene editing services and genetically modified cell lines to ABS for replication, marketing and distribution to leading pharmaceutical
Radiopharmaceuticals

Researching Radiosensitizers, a New Class of Drugs That Would Make Tumors More Vulnerable to Radiation Therapy

Two out of three cancer patients are treated with radiation, but the therapy often fails to wipe out the tumor or slow its growth. Southern Research is working to develop a new class of drugs that will help the radiation deliver a more powerful punch to the disease. Dr. Bo Xu, M.D., Ph.D., Distinguished Fellow and Chair of Southern Research’s Oncology Department, said a radiosensitizer would greatly benefit cancer patients
cancer

Widespread Hype Gives False Hope To Many Cancer Patients

(photo caption) Michael Uvanni of Rome, N.Y., sits in one of his interior design business showrooms. Uvanni was devastated when his brother, James Michael Uvanni III, 66, died from cancer following more than three years of specialized treatment. Given how optimistic his doctors were, he expected that his brother would be cured, or at least live a long time. (Mike Roy for KHN) by Liz Szabo, Kaiser Health News After
cancer Pharmaceuticals

Breast Cancer Drug Dampens Immune Response, Protecting Light-Sensing Cells of the Eye

Tamoxifen could be repurposed to treat degenerative diseases of the retina The breast cancer drug tamoxifen appears to protect light-sensitive cells in the eye from degeneration, according to a new study in mice. The drug prevented immune cells from removing injured photoreceptors, the light-sensitive cells of the retina in the back of the eye. The study, recently reported in the Journal of Neuroscience, suggests tamoxifen might work for the treatment
Biomarkers

New Avenue for Anti-Depressant Therapy Discovered

Researchers have made a ground-breaking discovery revealing new molecular information on how the brain regulates depression and anxiety. In so doing, they identified a new molecule that alleviates anxiety and depressive behaviour in rodents. The research, led by Eleanor Coffey, Research Director at Åbo Akademi University in Finland is a collaborative effort between scientists in Finland and the US. The researchers found that a protein called JNK when active, represses
Biotechnology

Doctors Look to Combination Drug to Treat Osteoarthritis Pain and Hypertension

Approximately half, or an estimated 13.5 million, of the 27 million Americans living with osteoarthritis pain also suffer from high blood pressure. Many of these 13.5 million people cannot take the standard drugs used to treat osteoarthritis pain, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). NSAIDs raise the risk of further increasing blood pressure (hypertension), and potentially causing stroke or heart attacks. In July of 2015 the FDA issued a safety warning stating
cancer Cancer Discovery Genomes

Researchers ID Cancer Gene-Drug Combinations Ripe for Precision Medicine

In an effort to expand the number of cancer gene mutations that can be specifically targeted with personalized therapies, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Moores Cancer Center looked for combinations of mutated genes and drugs that together kill cancer cells. Such combinations are expected to kill cancer cells, which have mutations, but not healthy cells, which do not. The study, published July 21 in
cancer Cancer Discovery Pharmaceuticals Vaccines

Q&A with TapImmune CEO Dr. Glynn Wilson, on a Vaccine to Prevent Cancer Recurrence, in Multiple Phase II Trials

A vaccine that can prevent the recurrence and metastasis of cancer would save countless lives. In the past century, vaccines have virtually eradicated life threatening diseases including polio and tuberculosis. Medical science may soon be at the point of delivering a cancer vaccine. Scientists at TapImmune are working closely with leading institutions and a big pharma collaborator including the Mayo Clinic, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, the U.S. Department of
Pharmaceuticals Prescriptions

A New Way to Nip AIDS in the Bud

When new AIDS virus particles bud from an infected cell, an enzyme named protease activates to help the viruses mature and infect more cells. That’s why modern AIDS drugs control the disease by inhibiting protease. Now, University of Utah researchers found a way to turn protease into a double-edged sword: They showed that if they delay the budding of new HIV particles, protease itself will destroy the virus instead of
cancer Cell Therapy Pharmaceuticals Prescriptions

Antibody-Based Drug Helps “Bridge” Leukemia Patients to Curative Treatment

In a randomized Phase III study of the drug inotuzumab ozogamicin, a statistically significant percentage of patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) whose disease had relapsed following standard therapies, qualified for stem cell transplants. Inotuzumab ozogamicin, also known as CMC-544, links an antibody that targets CD22, a protein found on the surface of more than 90 percent of ALL cells. Once the drug connects to CD22, the ALL cell draws
Biotechnology Pharmaceutical Business News

Pfizer to Acquire Anacor Citing Strong fit with Pfizer’s Inflammation and Immunology portfolio

Pfizer Inc. and Anacor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Pfizer will acquire Anacor for $99.25 per Anacor share, in cash, for a total transaction value, net of cash, of approximately $5.2 billion, which assumes the conversion of Anacor’s outstanding convertible notes. The Boards of Directors of both companies have unanimously approved the transaction. Anacor’s flagship asset, crisaborole, a differentiated non-steroidal
Gene Therapy Genomes

Experimental Drug Cancels Effect From Key Intellectual Disability Gene in Mice

A University of Wisconsin-Madison researcher who studies the most common genetic intellectual disability has used an experimental drug to reverse — in mice — damage from the mutation that causes the syndrome. The condition, called fragile X, has devastating effects on intellectual abilities. Fragile X affects one boy in 4,000 and one girl in 7,000. It is caused by a mutation in a gene that fails to make the protein
Cardiology

Study Shows How Different People Respond to Aspirin — an Important Cardioprotective Drug

Researchers have learned new information about how different people respond to aspirin, a globally prescribed drug in cardioprotection. The research team, led by scientists at Cardiff University in the United Kingdom and including representatives from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the University of Colorado, identified more than 5,600 lipids — or fats — in blood platelets and gained new insights into how these cells respond to aspirin. “Aspirin
cancer

Costs for Orally-Administered Cancer Drugs Skyrocket

New cancer drugs taken in pill form have become dramatically more expensive in their first year on the market compared with drugs launched 15 years ago, a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill study has found. The findings call into question the sustainability of a system that sets high prices at market entry in addition to rapidly increasing those prices over time. The researchers report April 28 in JAMA
Gene Therapy Genomes

Gene Variant Explains Racial Disparities in Adverse Reactions to Urate-Lowering Drug

A multi-institutional study led by a Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigator finds significant racial disparities in the risk that patients being treated for gout will develop a serious, sometimes life-threatening adverse reaction to the most commonly prescribed medication. The increased risk closely correlates with the frequency of a gene variant previously associated with that adverse reaction, supporting recommendations to screen for that variant in patients from those populations. "We found
Biotechnology Pharmaceutical Business News Pharmaceuticals

Q&A with Denis Corin, Q Bio Med Inc – Getting Past the “Pharma Bro” – Smaller Biotech Continue to Strive for Well-Being of Patients

There has been a vast amount of mixed feelings surrounding the biotech/drug company development of drugs and the final price consumers/patients are paying. Especially when one biotech CEO, Martin Shkreli (aka ‘Pharma Bro”) decided to massively increase of a very cheap drug vital to patients with HIV from $13.50 to $750. The actions of one CEO has cast an unjust dark shadow on peers in the industry. According to Denis Corin,