Thursday, April 20, 2017

Some Excellent Science on a Roll

For these ones, there's nothing to be gained by trying to add something pithy to the news about them.  There's enough from each article to present essentially a splash screen so you know whether you need to read it since the article titles can be less than optimal sometimes.

Synthetic Blood Transfusions

Blood transfusions can save the lives of patients who have suffered major blood loss, but hospitals don't always have enough or the right type on hand. In search of a solution, researchers have developed a promising substitute using blood's oxygen-carrying component, hemoglobin. The in vitro study, reported in ACS' journal Biomacromolecules, found that the modified hemoglobin was an effective oxygen carrier and also scavenged for potentially damaging free radicals.

Science Daily:  Making artificial blood for transfusions

Amino Acids and Cancer Survival

Cutting out certain amino acids -- the building blocks of proteins -- from the diet of mice slows tumor growth and prolongs survival, according to new research published in Nature.

Researchers at the Cancer Research UK Beatson Institute and the University of Glasgow found that removing two non-essential amino acids -- serine and glycine -- from the diet of mice slowed the development of lymphoma and intestinal cancer.

Note: this can only be accomplished safely with a strictly-controlled medical diet.

Science Daily:  Amino acids in diet could be key to starving cancer

PTSD Management without Invasive Treatment

A closed-loop acoustic stimulation brainwave technology significantly reduced symptoms in people suffering from post-traumatic stress in a small pilot study conducted at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. The study is published in the April 19 online edition of the journal BMC Psychiatry.

"The effects of chronic stress are killing people and the medical profession has not yet found an answer for how best to treat them," said Charles H. Tegeler, M.D., professor of neurology at Wake Forest School of Medicine, a part of Wake Forest Baptist. "We believe there is a need for effective, non-invasive, non-drug therapies for symptoms of post-traumatic stress, which is why we conducted this trial."

Science Daily:  Reduction of post-traumatic stress symptoms associated with noninvasive technology

Deprived of oxygen, naked mole-rats can survive by metabolizing fructose just as plants do, researchers report this week in the journal Science.

Understanding how the animals do this could lead to treatments for patients suffering crises of oxygen deprivation, as in heart attacks and strokes.

Science Daily:  Naked mole-rats 'turn into plants' when oxygen is low

Failure in Drug Quality Assurance

A drug designed to treat epilepsy and bipolar disorder may be responsible for 4,100 severe birth defects in babies, French health authorities have said.

A preliminary study published by the French National Agency for the Safety of Medicines (ANSM), in conjunction with the country's health insurance administration, found that women whose epilepsy was treated with the drug valproate were four times more likely have babies with major congenital malformations.

Women who took the same medication for bipolar disorder were twice as likely, the report said.

RT: Epilepsy drug linked to 4,100 severe birth defects – French health authorities

Inadequate testing is difficult to accept when there's only one word needed to justify the FDA:  Thalidomide.  (WIKI:  Thalidomide)

Anyone who saw that can never forget.  The deformities it caused were so bad Ithaka won't present pictures of them and the worst of it is some of them survived but, as a friend once said to me, "Don't you think they would fight as hard for survival as any kid?"

Yes, I do.  My point is they would not have had to fight any harder than any other kid if not for Thalidomide.

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