Archive for the ‘Health News’ Category

Develop a method to inoculate vaccine without needle

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Researchers at the George Institute of Technology in Atlanta (United States ) could have found a way to inoculate a vaccine without a needle , through a patch placed on the skin , according to a study published in the journal Nature Medicine. If the formula is successful, there is no need to go to a medical facility to protect against disease.

This method could revolutionize the way of administering vaccines “so easy and safe it is, ” said Professor Mark Prausnitz , director of the team. The patch contains about one hundred microscopic needle – length is 650 microns , six times the thickness of a human hair , made of biodegradable plastic and slightly penetrating painlessly into the skin surface . Then dissolve without a trace. This method “can help immunization programs by eliminating the need for specialized personnel and allow self-vaccination , “said Prausnitz .

The use of dressings , instead of syringes, ” transformed the battle against future pandemics, because patients are inoculated vaccines that may be sent by mail and may be administered at home without medical help , ” the researcher said. The use of patches and eliminate the costs of expensive infrastructure that carry mass vaccination campaigns . In addition, avoid the risk of using contaminated needles.

The researchers said that tests show that the patch is just as valid and secure than conventional injections . Experiments conducted with laboratory mice show that the pads work better than injectable vaccines to prevent influenza infections , as it penetrates into the body through the skin surface , which plays an important role in the immune system. Another advantage is that it facilitates the protection of people with a fear of needles , have a phobia that almost 10 % of the population.

In addition , the patch – vaccine formulation is presented as a dry (frozen) , which reinforces its stability during distribution and storage. Despite these benefits , you still need further testing on animals before being tested in human volunteers. In any case , the polymer plastic microneedles that are manufactured and used in medicine without side effects in the patient.

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Milk should pay attention to small details

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Milk is rich in calcium, protein, vitamins and other food. Milk should be aware of the following small details.

Avoid sunlight milk
B vitamins in milk exposed to sunlight will soon be destroyed, so best to use stored milk colored or opaque containers, and stored in cool place.

Avoid milk and tea to drink with
Some people like to drink milk side edge tea, the habit of southerners than northerners.
In fact, this approach is not scientific to drink, because milk is rich in calcium ions, and tea in some of the elements will hinder calcium absorption in the gastrointestinal weaken the inherent nutritional content of milk.

Avoid using copper heating milk

Currently, a number of high-grade copper utensils in there are applications, such as copper pot, copper heating cup.
Copper can accelerate the destruction of the vitamin, especially in the heating process, the copper on the milk has a catalytic chemical reaction occurs, will accelerate the loss of nutrients.

Drink a glass of milk a day more appropriate
From Harvard University and other research institutions, a nutritional epidemiologist and dairy products of 36 experts reached consensus recently, the United States in 2005 revised guidelines for consumption of milk “to drink three glasses of milk a day recommended adult” is unwise, adult Drink a glass of milk a day more appropriate.

Easy to forget the details of the mouth to drink milk stink
Milk contains nutrients, often known as the body is necessary, “white blood.” However, each time after drinking milk, people often feel the throat dry as, and in the oral cavity have an eccentric taste. Beijing Hospital dentist Yang Hong said that this is because we ignored the last one “process” – to drink a small cup of warm water.
Many people will not notice the small details that one brush teeth after drinking the milk on the line, while others even drinking milk before bed straight to sleep. In fact, these are easy to form bad habits of oral diseases.
“To prevent the breeding of oral bacteria, mouthwash immediately after drinking the milk, it can not only remove the remnants of the mouth of milk, but also attached to the throat on the flush of milk residues, play a clean mouth, throat, the role of moisture .
However be noted that a small amount of water must, because drinking too much water will dilute the concentration of gastric juice, milk affect the digestion and absorption in the human body. Especially at night not to drink too much, drink too much because the eyelid easily result in swelling, will run at midnight the old toilet, the quality of sleep.

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60% of child accidents are due to carelessness of parents or carers

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

60% of accidents who have children between one and four years are the result of neglect by parents or caregivers. In addition, the “Study on childhood accidents treated at health centers in Spain”, presented by the Foundation Mapfre, indicates that 25.8% of these accidents are caused by the lack of preventive and protective measures, 12, 1% is the result of chance and 1.5% is due to the negligence of the caregiver.

This work, whose main purpose is to show how accidents suffered by children 14 years and find out the causes leading to them, advised that the summer vacation period, due to increased leisure time, “will focus the Most of the accidents. ” 81.8% of surveyed primary care physicians confirm that the days of the week with the largest number of child accidents in the home are on Saturdays and Sundays, when children do not attend class.

Mapfre Foundation recommends to prevent these accidents, keep chemicals and medicines out of reach of children, small monitor when they are in high chairs, changing tables and chairs and leave them alone and avoid using at all times restraint measures necessary, and use appropriate protective equipment when playing sports. As for beaches and pools, it is advisable to observe the safety rules, always have the lifeguard and diving head around unless you know the depth.

The report is part of the educational program “careful”, which will be launched in about 200 schools across Spain, with the aim to “help the children acquire habits of self-protection and that these be increased and strengthened during earliest stages of education, “said the president of the Institute for Prevention, Health and Environment, FundaciĆ³n Mapfre, Carlos Alvarez.

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WHO warns that measles could cause 500,000 deaths in 2012

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that global efforts to eradicate measles has stagnated and that cases of this highly contagious disease were detected again in some countries. According to the agency, if no appropriate measures are taken and continues to increase in outbreaks, the disease could cause half a million deaths in 2012 and “make it very difficult to meet by 2015 the Millennium Development Goal that seeks the reduction in two-thirds of child mortality worldwide. ”

The alert was launched at the World Health Assembly in Geneva, where participants attributed the resurgence of the disease to the “significant decline” in funding for treatment and “a lack of political will of some governments.”

The head of the Department of Immunization WHO, Peter Strebel, recalled that from 1990 to 2008, much progress in the fight against the disease. However, he noted that recently there have been outbreaks in at least 31 countries in Africa, United Kingdom, Bulgaria, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Zimbabwe, Chad and Nigeria are the most affected states in Africa, where since June 1100 have been reported measles deaths and more than 64,000 cases.

“To avoid a worldwide resurgence of this disease, they should strengthen immunization systems, continue with the preventive vaccination campaigns, and donors should increase their contributions. This year we have a deficit of $ 50 million” , Strebel said.

Among the goals WHO has set the 2015 figure measles coverage reaching 90% in immunization campaigns at the national level and 80% in every district, reducing measles cases to less than 5 for a million and mortality by 95% compared to the 2000 levels.

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A team of scientists managed to create the first artificial cell

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

A group of researchers led by the discoverer of the human genome, Craig Venter, has managed to create for the first time in history an artificial cell. Cell is the first man-made, an achievement with countless applications in the future, scientists stressed.

“This is the first cell constructed and we can call it synthetic because it is derived entirely from a synthetic chromosome, made in a chemically synthesized chemically, after starting with information in a computer,” Venter confirmed the journal Science, which gathers the study. The team will now go further and future use of their achievement. “It is a powerful tool for designing biologically whatever we want”, since, according to Venter, could be used to produce fuel, to design new algae that absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and even to make better vaccines.

The team worked with a synthetic version of the DNA of a small bacterium called Mycoplasma mycoides, transplanted to another bacterium called Mycoplasma capricolum, which he had removed most of their genetic information, as detailed in the journal . After many failed attempts, the new microbe began to show signs of life for themselves in the laboratory. The whole process took years for researchers who had to solve how to create an artificial chromosome from multiple gene sequences assembled. Once this is solved, the problem was how to turn it into another bacterium. In the end, managed to activate the transplanted DNA cellular machinery of the new microbe and began to replicate.

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Work more than three hours overtime per day is bad for the heart

Friday, May 14th, 2010

The results of a study involving more than 10,000 officers in London (UK) suggest that work more than three hours overtime per day is detrimental to the heart. The research, published in the “European Heart Journal, has found that people who worked more than three hours above the normal workday of seven hours had a 60% higher risk of heart-related problems, such as death from heart disease, heart attacks and angina compared to those who meet your schedule.

The relationship between working long hours and coronary disease independent of other factors, said Dr. Marianna Virtanen, working with the Finnish Institute of Health and the University of London. “Our results suggest a link between long working hours and an increased risk of heart disease, but more research is needed before we can determine with absolute certainty that overtime is a direct cause of the ills of the heart” he said.

The Whitehall II study began in 1985 and recruited 10 308 workers between 35 and 55 years of 20 civil service departments based in London. The data were collected at regular intervals and in the third phase from 1991-1994, introduced a question about working hours. This current analysis takes into account the results of 6014 persons (4262 men and 1752 women), aged between 39 and 61, who were followed from 2002 to 2004, is the latest phase of the trial.

During the average 11.2 years of follow-up, Dr. Virtanen and colleagues in Finland, London and France found 369 cases of fatal coronary heart disease, nonfatal myocardial infarction or angina pectoris. After adjusting for sociodemographic factors such as age, sex, marital status and level of work, found work three to four hours of overtime was associated with a 60% higher rate of heart disease compared to those who carried out the normal day .

“A plausible explanation for the increase could be that both adverse lifestyle changes in risk factors are more common among those working in excess,” Dr Virtanen said. Another possibility is that the experience of chronic stress (often associated with long working hours) would adversely affect metabolic processes.

Despite warnings from the authors about the limitations of the study, the results “reinforce the notion that work stress attributable to overtime is associated, apparently independently, with a higher risk of heart disease, said Gordon McInnes, Professor of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Glasgow (United Kingdom). “If the effect is truly causal, the importance is much greater. The stress induced by working overtime may contribute to an important part of cardiovascular disease,” he said.

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47% of patients with asthma do not manage your disease

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

47% of patients with asthma not control their disease and 26% did not follow any treatment. These are data from the Spanish Guidelines for Asthma Management (GEMA), in its edition for 2009, which said Dr. Carlos Melero, coordinator of the Asthma Society of Pneumology Madrid (Neumomadrid), to mark the World Day Asthma.

These patients suffer the symptoms “needlessly” because with proper treatment, “95% of cases can have a normal life,” said the doctor. The problem is that patients “are not treated adequately or stop treatment as soon notice a modest improvement,” said Melero. Most asthmatics “abandon the basic treatment and rely only rescue medication when they have crises,” he said in this regard. He therefore recommended to patients with asthma who always follow “doctor’s orders, since according to improve symptoms can make adjustments in medication.”

When stability is not achieved in the control of asthma, “increases the risk of patients suffering from symptoms, sudden crises, hospitalizations, 12 000 patients every day go to the hospital in Europe, or even that they can die,” said the doctor. It is important to be aware if you are experiencing on a regular asthma symptoms as breathlessness, wheezing, chest tightness, coughing or bronchial secretions, and whether the patient has nighttime awakenings due to this cause, a crisis that requires hospitalization, often need to resort to rescue medication or is unable to maintain normal activity levels and misses work, he listed Melero.

The doctor also noted the increased prevalence of this disease in the population of industrialized countries. “Although it is shown that due to pollution, there is evidence that when pollution levels rise, the visits of these patients to the emergency services grow,” he said. Melero said in this sense that the Spanish Society of Pneumology and Thoracic Surgery (SEPAR) wants to remember “the importance of fighting for clean air as an important element in improving the quality of life of asthmatics.”

Melero said that between 2010 and 2012 will be held on the European Respiratory Health Survey (ECRHS III) in Spain. With this third monitoring carried out with the people who participated in the previous study aims to describe the evolution of asthma, rhinitis and sensitization to allergens and identify environmental and genetic determinants.

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The risk of premature death increased by 12% in people who sleep less than six hours

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

People who sleep less than six hours a night are 12% more likely to die of premature death than those who lie every night between six and eight hours recommended, according to a study by researchers at Warwick University (UK) in collaboration with the Faculty of Medicine Federico II, Italy.

Published in the journal “Sleep”, this work contains unequivocal evidence of direct links between short sleep duration (less than six hours a night) and increased the chances of premature death. The researchers also indicated that sleep too much (more than nine hours a night) can also be a cause for concern because, contrary to what happens when you sleep little, when you sleep too does not increase the risk of death, but may be a significant marker of potentially fatal disease remains unknown.

The scientists analyzed the relationship between the level of usual sleep duration and mortality after reviewing 16 studies prospective UK, U.S., Europe and East Asia. This study included more than 1.3 million patients, who were followed for 25 years, during which there were over 100,000 deaths in this group. The results showed that there is unequivocal evidence of direct links between short sleep and too long and the increased risk of premature death compared to participants who slept six to eight hours on average.

“While sleep deprivation is a cause of poor health, sleeping too could be an indicator of poor health,” said Professor Francesco Cappuccio, leader of the Dream Program, Health and Society at the University of Warwick and the assistant doctor University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust. “Modern society has seen a gradual reduction in the percentage of hours of sleep and this pattern is most common among people who work full time, which suggests that it may be due to social pressures to work longer and shift. Moreover, the deterioration of our health status is accompanied usually by an extension of our sleep time, “he said.

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A new method to diagnose bladder cancer urine sample

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

A new method to diagnose bladder cancer in urine samples by the screening of 14 genes. Powered by Puigvert Foundation and the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona, in the near future will allow non-invasive techniques adopted to reduce the number of cystoscopy, a test that involves the exploration of the bladder through the urethra.

Those responsible for the urology department of both schools explained that the change with respect to other methods is a “different approach” that involves the pursuit of a “gene pool” and not a single specific marker. The results of the new technique, after seven years of research and an investment of one million euros from the biotechnology firm Fina Biotech, were published n the journal Clinical Cancer Research.

The method, which is currently valid in five centers-the Puigvert Clinic and Foundation in Barcelona, the Virgen del Rocio Hospital in Seville and the urology departments of the Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre (Netherlands) and the Medical University of Vienna (Austria) – involves the collection of samples of one thousand patients. The process will be completed in September.

The application method will be effective “by 2013″, allowing a diagnosis of “no doubt” cheaper and with less inconvenience to patients, as currently required bladder cancer practice between 15 and 20 during cystoscopy five years, said the director of the Urology Clinic, Antonio Alcaraz. The service is responsible for it Puigvert Foundation, Antonio Villavicencio, explained that the bladder cancer becomes a “chronic disease”, since in half the cases once again on display, and that requires periodic review. That these reviews are not invasive, a urine test rather than introducing a camera through the urethra, will improve quality of life, he said.

The price of a cystoscopy is around 300 euros, while the new analysis does not exceed this amount according to current forecasts. Also expected to improve the diagnosis, through the possibility of advancing the same, especially the most aggressive tumors. Today, are diagnosed each year in Spain about 15,000 bladder cancers, of which about a third end in death. This is the seventh most common malignancy and the second most common genito-urinary tract, behind the prostate.

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Discovery of a mechanism that enhances the natural immunity against HIV

Saturday, May 8th, 2010

A team of scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Institute Ragon Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Harvard University have discovered that a particular gene found in people naturally immune to HIV-HLA-B57 causes the body to make a greater number of more lethal cells of the immune system attacking the virus and defend the body from infection.

The finding, published in the online edition of “Nature” and directed by Professors Arup Chakraborty (MIT) and Bruce Walker (MGH), could help researchers develop vaccines that provoke the same response to the HIV virus that that individuals with this particular gene generated by themselves. When people are HIV infected, it is normal to be only a matter of time, unless prevented by drugs, your body develops AIDS. However, there is a small group of people exposed to this virus, very slowly developing disease and, in some cases does not even develop it. The researchers demonstrated in the late 90s that a high percentage of people who showed naturally immune to HIV, representing one in every 200 individuals, were carriers of a gene called HLA B57.

The new research has found that the HLA B57 gene causes the body to build more T-cells white blood cells that help defend the body against infections, more powerful and lethal. Patients with this gene have an increased number of T cells that adhere more strongly to most proteins of HIV than people who lack this gene. This makes the T cells are better able to recognize cells expressing HIV proteins, including mutated versions that arise during infection. This effect helps these individuals have a better control of HIV infection and other viruses that develop quickly, “but also makes these patients more susceptible to autoimmune diseases in which T cells attack body’s own cells.

Most T cells are lethal only from a genetic point of view and recognize different pieces of foreign proteins, called epitopes, attached to the surface of cells that have been infected by viruses or bacteria. After a killer T cell is hooked to one of these proteins, is activated and begins to sweep the other body cells that express the same type of protein, to exterminate them. In addition, cloned themselves to create an army of T cells whose purpose is to attack the invader.

This work has shown that individuals with HLA B57 gene produce a greater number of T cells that are cross reactive, which means they can attack more than one epitope associated with HIV, including mutations that appear to escape activated T cells. Their findings could help researchers design a vaccine that helps to generate T cells able to have cross-reactions in people who lack a gene called HLA B57.

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