Soy Lecithin: How It Negatively Affects Your Health And Why You Need To Avoid It.


Soy Lecithin has been lingering around our food supply for over a century. It is an ingredient in literally hundreds of processed foods, and also sold as an over the counter health food supplement. Scientists claim it benefits our cardiovascular health, metabolism, memory, cognitive function, liver function, and even physical and athletic performance  However, most people don’t realize what soy lecithin actually is, and why the dangers of ingesting this additive far exceed its benefits.

Lecithin is an emulsifying substance that is found in the cells of all living organisms. The French scientist Maurice Gobley discovered lecithin in 1805 and named it “lekithos” after the Greek word for “egg yolk.” Until it was recovered from the waste products of soybean processing in the 1930s, eggs were the primary source of commercial lecithin. Today lecithin is the generic name given to a whole class of fat-and-water soluble compounds called phospholipids. Levels of phospholipids in soybean oils range from 1.48 to 3.08 percent, which is considerably higher than the 0.5 percent typically found in vegetable oils, but far less than the 30 percent found in egg yolks.

Out of the Dumps

Soybean lecithin comes from sludge left after crude soy oil goes through a “degumming” process. It is a waste product containing solvents and pesticides and has a consistency ranging from a gummy fluid to a plastic solid. Before being bleached to a more appealing light yellow, the color of lecithin ranges from a dirty tan to reddish brown. The hexane extraction process commonly used in soybean oil manufacture today yields less lecithin than the older ethanol-benzol process, but produces a more marketable lecithin with better color, reduced odor and less bitter flavor.

Historian William Shurtleff reports that the expansion of the soybean crushing and soy oil refining industries in Europe after 1908 led to a problem disposing the increasing amounts of fermenting, foul-smelling sludge. German companies then decided to vacuum dry the sludge, patent the process and sell it as “soybean lecithin.” Scientists hired to find some use for the substance cooked up more than a thousand new uses by 1939.

Today lecithin is ubiquitous in the processed food supply. It is most commonly used as an emulsifier to keep water and fats from separating in foods such as margarine, peanut butter, chocolate candies, ice cream, coffee creamers and infant formulas. Lecithin also helps prevent product spoilage, extending shelf life in the marketplace. In industry kitchens, it is used to improve mixing, speed crystallization, prevent “weeping,” and stop spattering, lumping and sticking. Used in cosmetics, lecithin softens the skin and helps other ingredients penetrate the skin barrier. A more water-loving version known as “deoiled lecithin” reduces the time required to shut down and clean the extruders used in the manufacture of textured vegetable protein and other soy products.

In theory, lecithin manufacture eliminates all soy proteins, making it hypoallergenic. In reality, minute amounts of soy protein always remain in lecithin as well as in soy oil. Three components of soy protein have been identified in soy lecithin, including the Kunitz trypsin inhibitor, which has a track record of triggering severe allergic reactions even in the most minuscule quantities. The presence of lecithin in so many food and cosmetic products poses a special danger for people with soyallergies.

The Making of a Wonder Food

Lecithin has been touted for years as a wonder food capable of combating atherosclerosis, multiple sclerosis, liver cirrhosis, gall stones, psoriasis, eczema, scleroderma, anxiety, tremors and brain aging. Because it is well known that the human body uses phospholipids to build strong, flexible cell membranes and to facilitate nerve transmission, health claims have been made for soy lecithin since the 1920s. Dr. A. A. Horvath, a leading purveyor of soybean health claims at the time, thought it could be used in “nerve tonics” or to help alcoholics reduce the effects of intoxication and withdrawal. In 1934, an article entitled “A Comfortable and Spontaneous Cure for the Opium Habit by Means of Lecithin” was written by Chinese researchers and published in an English language medical journal.

Lecithin, though, did not capture the popular imagination until the 1960s and 1970s when the bestselling health authors Adelle Davis, Linda Clark and Mary Ann Crenshaw hyped lecithin in their many books, including Let’s Get Well, Secrets of Health and Beauty and The Natural Way to Super Beauty: Featuring the Amazing Lecithin, Apple Cider Vinegar, B-6 and Kelp Diet.

Lecithin did not become a star of the health food circuit by accident. Research took off during the early 1930s, right when lecithin production became commercially viable. In 1939, the American Lecithin Company began sponsoring research studies, and published the most promising in a 23-page booklet entitled Soybean Lecithin in 1944. The company, not coincidentally introduced a health food cookie with a lecithin filling known as the “Lexo Wafer” and a lecithin/wheat germ supplement called Granulestin. In the mid 1970s, Natterman, a lecithin marketing company based in Germany, hired scientists at various health clinics to experiment with lecithin and to write scientific articles about it. These “check book” scientists coined the term “essential phospholipids” an inaccurate term since a healthy body can produce its own phospholipids from phosphorous and lipids.

In September 2001, lecithin got a boost when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized products containing enough of it to bear labels such as “A good source of choline.” Producers of soy lecithin hope to find ways to help the new health claim lift demand for lecithin and increase prices in what has been a soft market. Eggs, milk and soy products are the leading dietary sources of choline, according to recent research conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and at Duke University.

Genetically Modified

One of the biggest problems associated with soy lecithin comes from the origin of the soy itself. The majority of soy sources in the world are now genetically modified (GM). Researchers have clearly identified GM foods as a threat to the environment, pollution of soils and a long-term threat to human health with links to of the world with unnatural genetic material that may have unknown long-term consequences with links to decreased fertility, immunological alterations in the gut and the exacerbation and creation of allergies.

Genetically engineered soy contains high concentrations of plant toxicants. The presence of high levels of toxicants in the GM soy
represent thousands of plant biochemicals many of which have been shown to have toxic effects on animals.

Unfermented Soy Sources 

The manufacture of soy lecithin is also typically confined to unfermented sources because it is quicker and cheaper to make. Unfermented soyproducts are rich in enzyme inhibitors. Enzymes such as amylase lipase and protease are secreted into the digestive tract to help break down food and free nutrients for assimilation into the body. The high content of enzyme inhibitors in unfermented soybeans interferes with this process and makes carbohydrates and proteins from soybeans impossible to completely digest.

Unfermented soy has been linked to digestive distress, immune system breakdown, PMS, endometriosis, reproductive problems for men and women, allergies, ADD and ADHD, higher risk of heart disease and cancer, malnutrition, and loss of libido.

It is now widely recognized that the only soy fit for human consumption is fermented soy.

Phosphatidyl Choline (PC)

Because many lecithin products sold in health food stores contain less than 30 percent choline, many clinicians prefer to use the more potent Phosphatidylcholine (PC) or its even more powerful derivative drug Glyceryl-phosphorylcholine (GPC). Both are being used to prevent and reverse dementia, improve cognitive function, increase human growth hormone (hGH) release, and to treat brain disorders such as damage from stroke. PC and GPC may help build nerve cell membranes, facilitate electrical transmission in the brain, hold membrane proteins in place, and produce the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. However, studies on soy lecithin, PC, and brain aging have been inconsistent and contradictory ever since the 1920s. Generally, lecithin is regarded as safe except for people who are highly allergic to soy. However, the late Robert Atkins, MD, advised patients not to take large doses of supplemental lecithin without extra vitamin C to protect them from the nitrosamines formed from choline metabolism. Trimethylamine and dimethylamine, which are metabolized by bacteria in the intestines from choline, are important precurors to N-nitrosodimethylamine, a potent carcinogen in a wide variety of animal species.

Phosphatidyl Serine (PS)

Phosphatidyl serine (PS) — another popular phospholipid that improves brain function and mental acuity – nearly always comes from soy oil. Most of the scientific studies proving its efficacy, however, come from bovine sources, which also contain DHA as part of the structure. Plant oils never contain readymade DHA. Indeed, the entire fatty acid structure is different; bovine derived PS is rich in stearic and oleic acids, while soy PS is rich in linoleic and palmitic acids. Complicating matters further, the PS naturally formed in the human body consists of 37.5 percent stearic acid and 24.2 percent arachidonic acid. Yet soy-derived PS seems to help many people.

Russell Blaylock, MD, author of Excitotoxins, the Taste that Kills, explains that the probable reason PS works is because its chemical structure is similar to that of L-glutamate, the trouble-making neurotransmitter, amino acid and excitotoxin that exists in high concentration in MSG (monosodium glutamate), HVP (hydrolyzed vegetable protein) and “natural flavorings” and foods containing these soy derivatives. (See Chapter 11.) Because PS competes with glutamate, it may protect us from glutamate toxicity. Ironically, the expensive soy-derived supplement PS is being used to undo damage that may be caused in part by the cheap soy in processed foods

Lysophosphatidyl-ethanolamine (LPE)

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved lysophosphatidyl-ethanolamine (LPE), another phosphatidyl substance commercially extracted from soybeans, for use as a fruit ripener and shelf-life extender. LPE – once called cephalin — is now being used to treat grapes, cranberries, strawberries, blueberries, apples, tomatoes, and cut flowers.

When applied to fruits that are nearly ripe – going into puberty, so to speak — LPE promotes ripening. When applied to picked fruit or cut flowers that are already ripe or blooming, however, it will “reduce senescence by inhibiting some of the enzymes involved in membrane breakdown.” This can dramatically extend shelf life. Whether the substance could also keep human bodies fresh for funeral home viewings has not yet been investigated.

Source: http://myscienceacademy.org

 

soya

American cancer clinics turn away thousands of Medicare patients.


cancer_care

Cancer care rationing begins in America as cancer clinics turn away thousands of Medicare patients

Federal sequestration measures that came into effect on April 1 are making it impossible for many cancer clinics across the country to administer conventional care to patients, and particularly to those on Medicare. Consequently, thousands of cancer patients with taxpayer-funded insurance coverage are being turned away, according to reports, as clinics simply do not have the capacity nor the funding to administer expensive pharmaceutical-based treatments such as chemotherapy.

According to the Washington Post, many cancer clinics are having to turn away patients without adequate coverage, or else face potential closure of their practices. Since many of the latest cancer drugs now cost upwards of $35,000 or more per year, it is grossly unsustainable to deliver such treatments to patients without adequate insurance coverage — doing so would spell financial suicide for even the most successful and well-funded cancer clinics.

“If we treated the patients receiving the most expensive drugs, we’d be out of business in six months to a year,” said Jeff Vacirca, chief executive of North Shore Hematology Oncology Associates in New York, to the Washington Post. “The drugs we’re going to lose money on we’re not going to administer right now.”

Back in October, the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, another New York-based cancer center, announced that it would not be administering an expensive new cancer drug known as Zaltrap (ziv-afilbercept), a Sanofi-Aventis creation designed to treat metastatic colorectal cancer. According to an op-ed piece published by The New York Times (NYT), an average month’s worth of treatment with Zaltrap costs more than $11,000, or more than $132,000 per year.

“We don’t sugar-coat things, we’re cancer doctors,” explained Charles Holladay, an oncologist at the Charleston Cancer Center in South Carolina, to the Washington Post. Holladay’s facility began informing many of its government-covered patients several weeks ago that they would have to seek out alternative treatment options.”We tell them that if we don’t go this course, it’s just a matter of time before we go out of business,” he added.

Prevention, natural treatments are the keys to beating cancer and avoiding a total health care meltdown

Even if sequestration was not a factor in the current cancer treatment crisis, the ever-escalating costs of conventional cancer treatments would still be bankrupting an already-overburdened American healthcare system. The public at large is still not being informed about effective cancer prevention strategies, for instance, nor is there any effort whatsoever being made by public health authorities to teach people about effective natural cancer treatment options like the Gerson Therapy protocol, Indian black salve, and all-natural cannabis oil.

This, of course, is due to the fact that the conventional healthcare system is owned and operated by the pharmaceutical cartel, which has no interest in actually healing people. Instead, a sadistic combination of greed and eugenics is what drives healthcare, and especially the cancer industry, today — and this death-care model is directly responsible for pushing the healthcare system to the precipice of complete destruction.

“With an aging global population and an endless conveyor belt of expensive new drugs and technologies and increasing financial pressures, the cost of cancer care in high-income countries is becoming unsustainable,” said the journal The Lancet Oncology in a statement back in 2011 about the failure of the conventional cancer industry.

 

Source: http://csglobe.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

15 Powerful Things Happy People Do Differently.


Things-Happy-People-Do-Differently-

What are the differences between happy people and unhappy people? Of course, it should be very obvious: happy people are happy while  unhappy people are unhappy, right? Well, that is correct.But, we want to know what happy people do differently, so I have put together a list of things that happy people do differently than unhappy people.

1. Love vs. Fear

Well, I can tell you for sure that those people who are really happy, fear less and love a lot more. They see each moment, each challenge, each person as an opportunity to discover more about themselves and the world around them.

2. Acceptance vs. Resistance 

Happy people understand that you can’t really change a situation by resisting it, but you can definitely change it by accepting that it is there and by understanding that there might be a reason for its existence.

When something unpleasant happens to them, they don’t try to fight it (they know that this will make the situation even worse), but they ask themselves questions like: What can I learn from this? How can I make this better? And then they focus on the positive, rather than on the negative. They always seem to see the glass half full, no matter what happens to them.

3. Forgiveness vs. Unforgiveness

Really happy people know that it’s not healthy to hold on to anger. They choose to forgive and forget, understanding that forgiveness is  a gift they give to themselves first and foremost.

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. ~Buddha

4. Trust vs. Doubt

They trust themselves and they trust the people around them. Whether they are talking to the cleaning lady or the C.E.O. of a billion-dollar company, somehow they always seem make the person they are interacting with feel that there is something unique and special about them. They understand that beliefs are self-fulfilling prophecies.  

Because of that, they make sure to treat everyone with love, dignity and respect, and make no distinction between age, sex, social status, color, religion or race. These are the great men that Mark Twain was talking about: “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.”

5. Meaning vs. Ambition

They do the things they do because of the meaning it brings into their lives and because it gives their lives a sense of purpose.  They understand that “Doing what you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life” as Wayne Dyer says.  

And they care more about living a life full of meaningthan what, in our modern society we would call, living a successful life. The irony here is that most of the time they get both success and meaning because they choose to focus on doing the things they love the most and they always pursue their heart‘s desires. They are not motivated by money; they want to make a difference in the lives of those around them and in the world.

6. Praising vs. Criticizing

Happy people would probably agree with Carl’s Jung theory on resistance: “What you resist not only persists, but will grow in size.  They don’t criticize the absence of the behavior they want to reinforce, ratherthey know by praising the person and the behavior they wish to reinforce (even if it’s not often), they will actually encourage the positive behavior.

When a parent wants to make sure their 7 year old boy will learn to always put the toys back in the box after he’s done playing with them, they make sure not to focus on the many times the child didn’t do it, criticizing him and his behavior, but every time the little boy does put the toys back, the parent praises him and his behavior and that is exactly how they reinforce the positive behavior, and in the end get the wanted results.

7. Challenges vs. Problems

Happy people will see problems as challenges, as opportunities to explore new ways of doing things, expressing their gratitude for them, understanding that underneath them all lay many opportunities that will allow them to expand and to grow.

8. Selflessness vs, Selfishness

They do what they do not for themselves, but for the good of others, making sure that they bring meaning, empowerment and happiness to the lives of many. They look for ways to give and to share the best of themselves with the world and to make other people happy.

Before giving, the mind of the giver is happy; while giving, the mind of the giver is made peaceful; and having given, the mind of the giver is uplifted. ~Buddha

9. Abundance vs. Lack/ Poverty 

They have an abundant mindset, living a balanced life, achieving abundance in all areas of life.

10. Dreaming Big vs. Being Realistic 

These people don’t really care about being realistic. They love and dare to dream big, they always listen to their heart and intuition and the greatness of their accomplishments scares many of us.

Dream no small dreams for they have no power to move the hearts of men. ~Goethe

11. Kindness vs. Cruelty

They are kind to themselves and others and they understand the power of self-love, self-forgiveness and self-acceptance.

12. Gratitude vs. Ingratitude

No matter where they look, no matter where they are or who they are with, they have the capacity to see beauty where most of us would only see ugliness, opportunities where most of us would only see struggles, abundance where most of us would only see lack and they express their gratitude for all of it.

13. Presence/ Engagement vs. Disengagement 

They know how to live in the present moment, appreciating what they have and where they are, while still dreaming big dreams about the future.

When you are present, you can allow the mind to be as it is without getting entangled in it. The mind in itself is a wonderful tool. Dysfunction sets in when you seek yourself in it and mistake it for who you are. ~Eckhart Tolle

14. Positivity vs. Negativity

No matter what happens to them, they always keep a positive perspective on everything and by doing so, they tend irritate a lot of negative and “realistic” people.

15. Taking Responsibility vs. Blaming 

They take full ownership over their lives and they rarely use excuses. Happy people understand that the moment you choose to blame some outside force for whatever is happening to you, you are in fact giving all your power away. They choose to keep their power and take responsibility for everything that happens to them.

 

French Doctor Finds “Bras Are A False Necessity” For Most Women.


Can I first just say how hyped I am about this new anti-bra study? According to French doctor Jean-Denis Rouillon, who studied 330 women’s breasts for 15 years(!), the whole shebang may be a waste of money and effort for many of us.

In his research, Rouillon found women who wore a bra regularly were actually more likely to experience breast sagging than women who did not. For most of the women, wearing a bra didn’t help lessen back pain, either.

I cannot tell you whether you need a bra, but I sure as hell know that I don’t need one, at least not for anything other than strategic nipple invisibility and, occasionally, a cleavage boost (I use the term “cleavage” very loosely here). I would go without a bra a whole lot more if it weren’t for this pesky idea that people should not be able to see the outline of my nipples through the fabric of my clothes. That this is seen as tacky or   slutty or improper is one of my longtime laments, because the alternative is that women who do not otherwise need a bra at most times have to be uncomfortable for no reason other than propriety.

But I digress. Rouillon told France Culture last year that his work was inspired by a lack of previous studies on the medical effects or necessity of women wearing bras. Now that the results are in, he concluded that ”bras are a false necessity”.

Medically, physiologically, anatomically – breasts gain no benefit from being denied gravity,” Rouillon said in a radio interview Wednesday. “On the contrary, they get saggier with a bra.”

For women who didn’t wear bras, ”on average their nipples lifted seven millimeters in one year in relation to the shoulders,” he added.

All of the women in Rouillon’s studies were 18 to 35 years old, however, and there’s no word on average breast size among participants. He points out somewhat weirdly that “it would be of no benefit to a 45-year-old mother to stop wearing a bra.”

But .. I can, right?

Source: http://www.blisstree.com

 

Experts Call for Polio Eradication Within 5 Years.


Over 400 scientists, physicians, and other leaders have signed a declaration to eradicate polio by 2018.

Cases of wild poliovirus have dropped dramatically in recent decades. In 2012, only 223 cases were reported, compared with 350,000 new cases in 1988. India, long a hotbed of polio activity, has not seen a case in over 2 years.

The Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013–2018 calls for:

  • delivering routine vaccines to more at-risk children, especially in endemic areas like Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Pakistan;
  • phasing out the oral polio vaccine and introducing the inactivated polio vaccines to eliminate both wild and vaccine-derived poliovirus.
  • protecting vaccination teams by increasing engagement with civic and religious leaders.

·         By Kelly Young

Source: Scientific Declaration on Polio Eradication

 Polio Eradication Is Achievable and Urgent, Declare 400+ Global Scientists

 

Experts from 80 countries cite time-limited opportunity, endorse comprehensive new eradication strategy

 

Hundreds of scientists, doctors and other experts from around the world launched the Scientific Declaration on Polio Eradication today, declaring that an end to the paralyzing disease is achievable and endorsing a comprehensive new strategy to secure a lasting polio-free world by 2018. The declaration’s launch coincides with the 58th anniversary of the announcement of Jonas Salk’s revolutionary vaccine.

 

The more than 400 signatories to the declaration urged governments, international organizations and civil society to

do their part to seize the historic opportunity to end polio and protect the world’s most vulnerable children and future

generations from this debilitating but preventable disease. The declaration calls for full funding and implementation

of the Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018, developed by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative

(GPEI). With polio cases at an all-time low and the disease remaining endemic in just three countries, the GPEI esti-

mates that ending the disease entirely by 2018 can be achieved for a cost of approximately $5.5 billion.

 

“We have the tools we need and a time-limited opening to defeat polio. The GPEI plan is the comprehensive roadmap that, if followed, will get us there,” said Dr. Walter Orenstein, professor and associate director of the Emory Vaccine Center at Emory University and former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Im- munization Program. Dr. Orenstein is one of the scientists spearheading the declaration and among the signatories who were on the frontlines of ending smallpox, the only human disease to be successfully eradicated.

 

The declaration – housed online by Emory University at vaccines.emory.edu/poliodeclaration – notes that polio vac- cines have already protected hundreds of millions of children from the disease and eliminated one of the three types of wild poliovirus, proving that eradication is scientifically feasible. It calls on the international community to meet

the goals in the GPEI plan for delivering polio vaccines to more children at risk, particularly in Afghanistan, Nigeria

and Pakistan, where polio remains endemic and emergency action plans launched over the past year have resulted in

significant improvements in vaccine coverage.

 

“Securing a lasting polio-free world goes hand in hand with strengthening routine immunization. We need all coun- tries to prioritize investments in routine immunization,” said Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta, founding director of the Center of Ex- cellence in Women and Child Health at Aga Khan University. Dr. Bhutta, one of the declaration’s leaders, is a member of the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization, a technical advisory body to the GPEI.

 

The declaration emphasizes that achieving polio eradication requires efforts interrelated with strengthening routine immunization, a new focus of the GPEI plan. As the last cases of polio are contained, high levels of routine immuniza- tion will be critical. At the same time, resources and learning from polio eradication efforts can be used to strengthen coverage of other life-saving vaccines, including for children who have never been reached with any health interven- tions before.

 

The scientists and experts signing the declaration called on the international community to take steps outlined in the GPEI plan to address challenges that have posed obstacles to polio eradication in the past, including improving immu- nization campaign quality to reach missed children and eliminating rare polio cases originated by the oral polio vac- cine. While previous polio efforts have sought to interrupt wild virus transmission and then address vaccine-derived virus, the new GPEI plan addresses both simultaneously with a timetable to phase out use of oral polio vaccines and introduce inactivated polio vaccines. The declaration urges vaccine manufacturers to provide an affordable supply of

 

1

the different vaccines required for eradication, and calls on scientists to continue researching new and better tools.

 

“As long as it exists anywhere in the world, polio threatens children everywhere,” said Professor Helen Rees, executive director of the Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa, who signed the declaration and chairs SAGE. “By pursuing in parallel all of the steps needed to reach eradication, includ-

ing the introduction of inactivated vaccines, countries have a complete path to eliminate polio’s threat.” In November

2012, SAGE recommended the introduction of at least one dose of inactivated polio vaccine into all routine immuniza-

tion programs prior to the phase-out of oral polio vaccines.

 

In light of recent attacks on health workers in some endemic countries, the declaration stresses the need to protect polio vaccination teams as they do their work. The GPEI plan includes a series of risk-mitigation strategies for insecure areas, including deepening engagement with community and religious leaders.

 

The scientists and experts signing the declaration hail from 80 countries and include Nobel laureates, vaccine and in- fectious disease experts, public health school deans, pediatricians and other health authorities. More than 40 leading universities and schools of public health and medicine are promoting the declaration on their websites, including Aga Khan University, the Harvard School of Public Health, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Al Azhar Uni- versity (Egypt), University of Cape Town, Redeemer’s University (Nigeria) and Christian Medical College Vellore (India).

 

The declaration notes that the world has a unique window of opportunity to eradicate polio. Only 223 new cases due to wild poliovirus were recorded in 2012, an historic low and a more than 99 percent decrease from the estimated

350,000 cases in 1988. Just 16 new cases have been reported so far in 2013 (as of 9 April). India, long-regarded as the most difficult place to eliminate polio, has not recorded a case in more than two years.

 

“Eradicating polio is no longer a question of technical or scientific feasibility. Rather, getting the most effective vac- cines to children at risk requires stronger political and societal commitment,” said Dr. David Heymann, head and senior fellow at the Chatham House Centre on Global Health Security and a signatory of the declaration. “Eliminating the last one percent of polio cases is an immense challenge, as is the eradication endgame after that. But by working together we can make history and leave the legacy of a polio-free world for future generations.”

 

 

 

 

For additional information about the Scientific Declaration or to view a full list of signatories, please visit the Emory  Vaccine Center Website. The Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018 is available online from the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. The plan will be publicly shared with the immunization community at the Global Vaccine Summit taking place 24-25 April 2013 in Abu Dhabi.

 

Source: http://vaccines.emory.edu

 

 

Scientific Declaration on Polio Eradication

 

 

Polio is a highly infectious disease that can cause irreversible paralysis and death. Today, the disease mostly affects children living in some of the world’s poorest and most marginalized communities. Yet we are closer than ever to a world where no child will ever again be crippled or die from this disease. At this unique moment, an international group of scientists has come together to stress the achievability of polio eradication and endorse

the Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan, a new strategy by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) to reach and sustain eradication by 2018. The plan was developed in consultation with a range of technical experts, governments, funding partners and stakeholders and received unanimous support from the WHO Executive Board in January 2013.

 

Whereas,

 

1. Unprecedented progress, scientific advances and new tools give us confidence that eradication is achievable.

 

• New cases of wild poliovirus have dropped from an estimated 350,000 cases in more than 125 countries in

1988 to fewer than 250 cases in just five countries in 2012.

• 2012 was a turning point for the remaining endemic countries. Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan launched national emergency action plans that resulted in significant improvements in immunization campaign quality and the fewest new cases on record.

• India stopped wild poliovirus transmission in 2011, proving that polio can be eliminated in the most challenging circumstances.

• Two effective vaccines have protected hundreds of millions of children against the disease: oral polio vaccine (OPV) and inactivated polio vaccine (IPV). The worldwide elimination of one of the three types of wild poliovirus (type 2) more than a decade ago proves that eradication through the polio eradication strategy is feasible.

• We have successful strategies to deliver vaccines and monitor coverage, strong surveillance to quickly detect and contain the virus, and innovative technologies and approaches such as geographic information system (GIS) mapping and new vaccine formulations to ensure that children are reached and protected.

 

2. The new Strategic Plan provides a clear path forward that capitalizes on this historic opportunity to end polio.

 

• The plan is a long-term, comprehensive strategy to complete and sustain eradication. The plan’s strategies

are sound and, when implemented, will interrupt transmission, sustain eradication and maximize

post-eradication benefits.

• The plan is a significant step forward over previous eradication strategies and offers strong solutions to

challenges by including:

1) Data-driven strategies to overcome operational challenges—including missed children—to ensure

high quality immunization campaigns that can interrupt transmission globally; and

2) Plans to eliminate both wild poliovirus and vaccine-derived poliovirus, starting with the withdrawal

of type 2 from OPV and introduction of IPV in all countries to boost immunity to remaining strains.

• Insecurity in endemic countries is a serious threat to the program. To overcome this challenge, the GPEI will improve coordination between civilian and security services, increase community demand for vaccination services, enhance advocacy efforts by religious leaders and institutions, and increase vaccinations in areas bordering insecure places to reduce spread of the disease.

 

3. The new plan emphasizes the urgency of improving routine immunization systems and lays a foundation to protect children against other diseases.

 

• The plan recognizes that eradication efforts are interdependent with strengthened routine immunization.

High levels of routine immunization are needed to achieve and sustain polio eradication.                               1

At the same time, eradication efforts demonstrate that it is possible to reach nearly every child, even in

the most underserved and remote areas, with vaccines and other life-saving interventions.

• The Strategic Plan calls for GPEI to use its robust infrastructure to benefit routine immunization and other health programs. It includes strategies for polio eradication staff and processes to help strengthen routine immunization, in partnership with national immunization programs and the GAVI Alliance and in alignment with the Global Vaccine Action Plan.

• Eradication would demonstrate that worldwide collaborations can successfully combat complex health

threats, including in remote communities too often left behind.

 

 

4.  Scaling back efforts would have devastating consequences.

 

• For polioviruses to survive, they must be transmitted from infected persons to susceptible persons in a continuous chain of human-to-human transmission. When immunity levels are high, the chains are broken. Today, there are fewer chains than ever before, creating an unprecedented opportunity to stop transmission.

• Weakening our efforts would lower immunity levels, setting the stage for a resurgence of outbreaks. Polio is highly infectious and spreads quickly. If we aim for control rather than eradication—relying only on routine immunization to vaccinate against polio and eliminating mass vaccination and other eradication strategies—we can expect up to 200,000 cases annually.

 

We, members of the scientific community, declare our conviction that the eradication of polio is an urgent and achievable global health priority. We endorse the Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan and call on actors in the global community to do their part to ensure the full implementation of the plan. We urge:

 

• Scientists to develop new and better tools to accelerate and sustain eradication, including

low-cost IPV options, and to continue providing technical support to endemic countries.

• Partners, including GPEI and vaccine manufacturers, to ensure sufficient supply of and access to different types of vaccines required for eradication, including IPV use in

resource-poor countries.

• Endemic country leaders and international program officials to stay fully committed and accountable to stop transmission. They can build on emergency plans to increase accountability and strengthen campaign quality. They can continue to develop regional- and community-specific solutions to bottlenecks such as vaccine refusals.

• Endemic country governments and partners to strengthen security measures and deepen engagement with community and religious leaders to promote demand and protect vaccination teams and volunteers, in light of recent attacks on health workers across Pakistan and Nigeria.

• International partners and national programs to strengthen linkages across polio vaccination efforts, routine immunization and other initiatives, including measles prevention, maternal and child health and nutrition, to address the broad health needs of communities.

• Partners, and national and global programs, to commit to strengthen routine immunization with the same urgency, robust technical and financial support and clear measurement indicators.

• Partners to fully fund the Strategic Plan. Funding gaps in 2012 led to cancelled and scaled-back

vaccination campaigns in 24 countries, leaving children in these areas more susceptible to polio.

• Civil society to continue to support efforts to end polio forever.

 

Polio eradication can be our generation’s legacy to all future generations. Only working together can we make history and end polio.

 

For more information about the declaration and for a full list of signatories, please visit http://vaccines.emory.edu/poliodeclaration/

 

 

Varicella Death Underscores Importance of Catch-Up Vaccination.


The varicella-related death of an unvaccinated, previously healthy 15-year-old girl serves as a reminder of the “importance of varicella vaccination, including catch-up vaccination of older children and adolescents,” according to an MMWR article.

The girl died in Ohio in 2009, within 3 weeks after admission to the hospital with rash, fever, and shortness of breath. The source of her exposure is unknown.

This case highlights that healthy unvaccinated people can develop severe disease, the authors say. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends that unvaccinated people without evidence of immunity should be given two doses of varicella vaccine, and those who have previously received one dose should be given a second.

The authors write: “Health-care providers should remind parents about vaccination during routine visits for children and adolescents, and parents should be informed of the risks, including potentially severe complications, from vaccine-preventable diseases.”

Source: MMWR

For Blacks, Disparities in End-of-Life-Care for ESRD Also Vary by Regional Spending.


The known racial disparities in end-of-life care for end-stage renal disease are magnified by regional variations, according to a study in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

U.S. researchers used national databases to study end-of-life care in some 100,000 adults with ESRD. They found that blacks were significantly more likely than whites to have died in a hospital, less likely to have discontinued dialysis by the time of death, and less likely to have been referred to hospice. The disparities in dialysis discontinuation and hospice referral were even more pronounced in regions where end-of-life Medicare spending tended to be higher.

The authors comment that the reasons for these differences “are likely complex” and may involve such factors as varying access to care, differences in health literacy, and mistrust of the medical system.

Source: Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology