Florida Begins Aerial Spraying Campaign of insecticides to control Zika over the cities.


Today at dawn, just as I suspected and predicted, authorities began reigning down insecticides on the city of Miami and surrounding metropolitan areas. The plan to spray was recommend by the CDC and will cover a 10-mile area, part of which includes a one-mile-square area north of downtown Miami- health officials feel this is the hub of Zika transmission in the state. Pregnant women are urged to avoid travel to this area.

As you can imagine, people have written to us because they are scared for their children, pets, and even themselves. But Miami-Dade health officials have said that residents don’t need to take any special precautions, unless they have allergies or sensitivities. Those people should remain indoors.

What officials are calling a “Zika outbreak” first happened last year and has been linked to more than 1,700 cases of microcephaly. However, Zika has been around for decades, and in multiple countries, without ever causing a cause of microcephaly, and yet the virus is all anyone in the health community wants to focus on. Interesting.

From the article:

“In a conference call on Tuesday, CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden expressed concern that vector control efforts so far have not been as effective as hoped. A CDC expert is currently conducting tests in Miami to see if mosquitoes in the area have developed insecticide resistance.

Florida had been using two products in the pyrethroid class of insecticides. In its aerial campaign, the state will use a chemical called Naled that has been approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, according to Joseph Conlon, a spokesman for the American Mosquito Control Association.”

Interestingly, the CDC wanted to spray in Puerto Rico as well but their altruistic “recommendation” was met with protests from concerned residents who are worried about the potential impact on health, bees, agriculture, and their environment. An important question here is, why isn’t the CDC worried?

Does this sound like the Ebola scare to anyone else?

After all, there’s an awful lot of hullabaloo over Zika, which has never been the culprit before, even though we don’t have concrete proof that it’s to blame. There’s even a prominent conservative Science journal asking if Zika is really causing the birth defects.

Watch the video. URL:https://youtu.be/TiAb9S7D-LY

Disadvantages of Sugar – 11 things that happen if you eat too much sugar


How much sugar is too much sugar?

The WHO used to recommend that you get no more than 10% of your daily calories from sugar, but now they’re considering lowering that to 5%. For an average, healthy adult, that would mean 25 grams, or about six teaspoons of sugar per day ( A single can of Coke has 39 grams of sugar). So what happens if you eat too much sugar? Here’s a depressing rundown.

Watch the slideshow.

http://www.speakingtree.in/slideshow/eleven-things-that-happen-if-you-eat-too-much-sugar.

Popular “Diet” Ingredient Now Linked to Leukemia and Lymphoma in New Landmark Study on Humans


As few as one diet soda daily may increase the risk for leukemia in men and women, and for multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma in men, according to new results from the longest-ever running study on aspartame as a carcinogen in humans. Importantly, this is the most comprehensive, long-term study ever completed on this topic, so it holds more weight than other past studies which appeared to show no risk. And disturbingly, it may also open the door for further similar findings on other cancers in future studies.

aspartameee

 The most thorough study yet on aspartame – Over two million person-years

For this study, researchers prospectively analyzed data from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study for a 22-year period. A total of 77,218 women and 47,810 men were included in the analysis, for a total of 2,278,396 person-years of data. Apart from sheer size, what makes this study superior to other past studies is the thoroughness with which aspartame intake was assessed. Every two years, participants were given a detailed dietary questionnaire, and their diets were reassessed every four years. Previous studies which found no link to cancer only ever assessed participants’ aspartame intake at one point in time, which could be a major weakness affecting their accuracy.

 

One diet soda a day increases leukemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphomas

The combined results of this new study showed that just one 12-fl oz. can (355 ml) of diet soda daily leads to:

– 42 percent higher leukemia risk in men and women (pooled analysis)
– 102 percent higher multiple myeloma risk (in men only)
– 31 percent higher non-Hodgkin lymphoma risk (in men only)

These results were based on multi-variable relative risk models, all in comparison to participants who drank no diet soda. It is unknown why only men drinking higher amounts of diet soda showed increased risk for multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Note that diet soda is the largest dietary source of aspartame (by far) in the U.S. Every year, Americans consume about 5,250 tons of aspartame in total, of which about 86 percent (4,500 tons) is found in diet sodas.

Confirmation of previous high quality research on animals

This new study shows the importance of the quality of research. Most of the past studies showing no link between aspartame and cancer have been criticized for being too short in duration and too inaccurate in assessing long-term aspartame intake. This new study solves both of those issues. The fact that it also shows a positive link to cancer should come as no surprise, because a previous best-in-class research study done on animals (900 rats over their entire natural lifetimes) showed strikingly similar results back in 2006: aspartame significantly increased the risk for lymphomas and leukemia in both males and females. More worrying is the follow on mega-study, which started aspartame exposure of the rats at the fetal stage. Increased lymphoma and leukemia risks were confirmed, and this time the female rats also showed significantly increased breast (mammary) cancer rates. This raises a critical question: will future, high-quality studies uncover links to the other cancers in which aspartame has been implicated (brain, breast, prostate, etc.)?

There is now more reason than ever to completely avoid aspartame in our daily diet. For those who are tempted to go back to sugary sodas as a “healthy” alternative, this study had a surprise finding: men consuming one or more sugar-sweetened sodas daily saw a 66 percent increase in non-Hodgkin lymphoma (even worse than for diet soda). Perhaps the healthiest soda is no soda at all.

Sand grain-size ‘neural dust’ sensors could monitor your brain


Science fiction that features wires connecting brains to computers might now be obsolete.

Wireless powered implants, each smaller than a grain of rice, could serve as “neural dust” that can one day scan and stimulate brain cells. Such research could one day help lead to next-generation brain-machine interfaces for controlling prosthetics, exoskeletons and robots, as well as “electroceuticals” to treat disorders of the brain and body.

The new prototypes, made by scientists at the University of California at Berkeley, are each roughly 3 millimeters long, 1 millimeter high and 4/5 of a millimeter thick. Each neural dust mote possesses a piezoelectric crystal that can convert mechanical power from ultrasonic pulses broadcast from outside the body into electrical power. The energy from these 60 ultrasonic pulses broadcast each second drives sensors and other electronics on the motes.

The piezoelectric crystals reflect some of the incoming ultrasonic pulses. Electronics in the neural dust motes can alter the pulses that get scattered outward, and so can wirelessly transmit data they gathered. In experiments with rats, the researchers found that neural dust motes implanted in nerve and muscle fibers in the leg could record and transmit electrical data.

“I was really skeptical of this concept at first, since it was so out of the box,” says Doug Weber, a bioengineer and neuroscientist at DARPA, who helped fund the neural dust research. “But it’s a really elegant approach, and it works pretty well.”

The researchers wanted to create wireless implants to avoid irritating the body. Conventional electronic implants that connect to nerves rely heavily on wires that can inflame tissues over time.

“The approach they’re taking is ingenious,” says neuroengineer Jacob Robinson at Rice University, who did not take part in this research. “They’ve addressed one of the most important challenges out there when it comes to neural interfaces.”

neural dust nerve ryan neely berkeleyThese sensors can currently be placed within the peripheral nervous system, the nerves that work throughout our arms and legs. One day, scientists hope to use sensors in the central nervous system, including the brain and spinal cord. 

The scientists had previously explored using radio waves to power and communicate with neural dust motes. However, radio waves are not good at reaching deep within the body, while decades of ultrasonic imaging has revealed that ultrasonic pulses are very good at penetrating soft tissues, says researcher Michel Maharbiz, an electrical engineer at the University of California at Berkeley.

“This is a breakthrough technology that really changes what’s possible in terms of sensing and stimulating nerve activity, especially nerves deep inside the body,” Weber says.

Ultimately, the researchers want to shrink neural dust motes down to just 50 microns wide, or roughly half the average width of a human hair. At that size, “the body should tolerate them much longer,” Maharbiz says.

The scientists are currently developing motes that can also electrically stimulate the body. If they are successful, this means that neural motes can not only monitor health, but actively serve as electroceutical therapies to treat brain disorders such as epilepsy.

Experiments so far with neural dust motes have only involved the peripheral nervous system, which serves the limbs and organs, and not the central nervous system consisting of the brain and spinal cord. Still, electroceutical therapies may still have many applications in the peripheral nervous system, such as bladder control or appetite suppression, says researcher Jose Carmena, a neuroscientist and electrical engineer at the University of California at Berkeley.

In the long run, the scientists want neural dust motes in the brain and spinal cord. One challenge that neural dust targeting the central nervous system faces is how ultrasound does not pass well through bone, Weber says. “That raises challenges if you want to create a brain-machine interface, but I’m not saying it’s impossible by any means,” Weber adds.

The researchers are now working on miniaturizing the motes further, discover more biocompatible materials to package them in so they can last in the body longer, and incorporate other sensors into them. Eventually motes could find use anywhere in the body, not just the nervous system, Maharbiz says.

“In the long term, we want to be able to send energy to and communicate with implants all over the body, to record data from a variety of organs in many different ways, maybe even report on the conditions of tumors or cancer therapies,” Maharbiz says.

Breakthrough new cancer treatment destroys 95% of cancer cells in tumors in mice in 2 hours.


A highly effective cancer treatment has been developed by Matthew Gdovin, an associate professor in the UTSA Department of Biology.  The treatment involves the injection of a chemical compound, nitrobenzaldehyde, into tumor cells and inducing their death.

“Even though there are many different types of cancers, the one thing they have in common is their susceptibility to this induced cell suicide,” said Gdovin.  “All forms of cancer attempt to make cells acidic on the outside as a way to attract the attention of a blood vessel,” he said.  Once the cancer cells attach to a blood vessel, they use it to grow the tumor.

This treatment sees the nitrobenzaldehyde injected into cancerous cells.  From there, ultraviolet light is shined onto the cells, causing them to become more acidic.  Eventually, they become so acidic that they destroy themselves.  The cancer is decimated, while the healthy cells are left untouched.

When treated, 95% of the cancer cells are destroyed, mice have tumor growth halted and their chance of survival was doubled.

Gdovin also shows that this treatment can help destroy cancer in hard-to-reach areas, like the brain stem.

 

“There are so many types of cancer for which the prognosis is very poor,” he said. “We’re thinking outside the box and finding a way to do what for many people is simply impossible.”

Can a Single Negative High-Sensitivity Troponin T Level Rule Out Myocardial Infarction?


Negative troponin testing combined with nonischemic electrocardiogram results and non–high-risk clinical presentation conferred a negative predictive value of 99.7%.

Prior studies have suggested that negative and nonincreasing high-sensitivity cardiac troponin (hsTn) levels measured at emergency department (ED) presentation and 1 hour later can rule out acute myocardial infarction (MI) in low-risk patients with nonischemic electrocardiogram (ECG) results (NEJM JW Emerg Med Feb 2016 and Ann Emerg Med 2016 Jan 12; [e-pub]; NEJM JW Emerg Med Jul 2016and JAMA Cardiol 2016 Jun 1; [e-pub]). In the current study, investigators evaluated whether a single hsTnT level can rule out 30-day major adverse cardiac events (acute MI, unstable angina, cardiogenic shock, ventricular arrhythmia, atrioventricular block, cardiac arrest, or death of cardiac or unknown cause).

The prospective observational study included 1138 patients with chest pain who presented to an ED in Sweden. Using a questionnaire designed by the researchers, physicians assessed clinical risk for acute coronary syndrome based on patient history and ECG results. Patients with a nonischemic ECG result and non-high clinical risk (29% of patients) were eligible for evaluation by a single hsTnT measurement. At a cutoff of 5 ng/L, the test had a negative predictive value of 99.7% for 30-day major adverse cardiac events in this group

COMMENT

The authors caution that patients presenting within 2 hours of symptom onset and patients aged >65 years were underrepresented in this study, and therefore it is unclear whether these results are applicable to them. Another limitation is that generalizing the investigators’ method of designating a patient as “non-high risk” may not be straightforward. Nevertheless, I think this study’s results are practice changing, and once hsTn tests become available in the U.S., patients aged <65 years presenting after 2 hours from symptom onset can be spared further testing if an hsTnT level is <5 ng/L.

Novartis CDK4/6 inhibitor LEE011 (ribociclib) receives FDA Breakthrough Therapy designation as first-line treatment for HR+/HER2- advanced breast cancer


Novartis announced today that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to LEE011 (ribociclib), in combination with letrozole, for the treatment of hormone receptor positive, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative (HR+/HER2-) advanced or metastatic breast cancer. LEE011 is a selective cyclin dependent kinase (CDK4/6) inhibitor.

The Breakthrough Therapy designation is based primarily on positive results of the Phase III MONALEESA-2 trial of LEE011 in combination with letrozole in postmenopausal women who had received no prior therapy for their advanced disease[1]. The MONALEESA-2 trial met the primary endpoint of clinically meaningful improvement in progression free survival (PFS) at a pre-planned interim analysis. Results of this study will be presented at an upcoming medical congress and will form the basis of regulatory discussions in the US, Europe and other countries for use in this indication.

“Despite advancements in treatment, an estimated 40,000 individuals in the United States die each year from advanced breast cancer,” said Alessandro Riva, MD, Global Head, Oncology Development and Medical Affairs, Novartis Oncology. “This designation shows the potential of LEE011, and we look forward to close collaboration with the FDA and the advanced breast cancer community to provide a new treatment option for women living with HR+/HER2- advanced breast cancer as quickly as possible.”

Up to one-third of patients with early-stage breast cancer will subsequently develop metastatic disease[2]. Metastatic breast cancer is the most serious form of the disease and occurs when the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, such as the brain, bones or liver[3]. Advanced breast cancer comprises metastatic breast cancer (stage 4) and locally advanced breast cancer (stage 3)[3]. Survival rates for women living with advanced breast cancer are lower than those for women with earlier stage disease. The 5-year relative survival rate for stage 3 breast cancer is approximately 72%, while metastatic (stage 4) breast cancer has a 5-year relative survival rate of approximately 22%[4].

According to the FDA, Breakthrough Therapy designation is intended to expedite the development and review of potential new medicines that treat serious or life-threatening conditions, if the therapy has demonstrated substantial improvement over an available therapy on at least one clinically significant endpoint. The designation includes all of the Fast Track program features, as well as more intensive FDA guidance on an efficient drug development program[5].

The LEE011 Breakthrough Therapy designation marks the 11th designation the FDA has granted to Novartis since the agency initiated the program in 2013, demonstrating Novartis’ commitment to developing innovative treatments for diseases with a significant unmet medical need.

About LEE011 (ribociclib)
LEE011 (ribociclib) is a selective cyclin dependent kinase inhibitor, a new class of drugs that help slow the progression of cancer by inhibiting two proteins called cyclin dependent kinase 4 and 6 (CDK4/6). These proteins, when over-activated in a cell, can enable cancer cells to grow and divide too quickly.

LEE011 has been studied in non-clinical models and is currently being evaluated in combination with additional endocrine agents as part of the MONALEESA (Mammary ONcology Assessment of LEE011’sEfficacy and SAfety) clinical trial program. LEE011 is not approved for any indication in any market at this time.

MONALEESA-2 is a Phase III randomized, double blind, placebo controlled, multicenter global registration trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of LEE011 in combination with letrozole compared to letrozole alone in postmenopausal women with HR+/HER2- advanced breast cancer who received no prior therapy for their advanced breast cancer[1]. MONALEESA-2 met the primary endpoint of clinically meaningful improvement in PFS at the pre-planned interim analysis and is continuing to assess overall survival data[1].

MONALEESA-3 is a trial evaluating LEE011 in combination with fulvestrant compared to fulvestrant alone in men and post-menopausal women with HR+/HER2- advanced breast cancer who have received no or a maximum of one prior endocrine therapy. MONALEESA-3 is fully enrolled.

MONALEESA-7 is a trial investigating LEE011 in combination with endocrine therapy and goserelin compared to endocrine therapy and goserelin alone in pre-menopausal women with HR+/HER2- advanced breast cancer who have not previously received endocrine therapy. MONALEESA-7 is fully enrolled and is the only Phase III study that focuses solely on pre and perimenopausal women with advanced breast cancer.

LEE011 was developed by Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR) under a research collaboration with Astex Pharmaceuticals.

Google Sister Company, Drug Maker to Develop Nerve Implants


One of Google’s sister companies will team up with pharmaceuticals firm GlaxoSmithKline to develop tiny implants that can tap nerves and change their electronic signals as a way of treating chronic illnesses.

GSK and Verily Life Sciences, a subsidiary of Google parent company Alphabet, have agreed to create a new company known as Galvani Bioelectronics, which will be based in Britain, with a second research hub in South San Francisco, California.

They said Monday that they will invest 540 million pounds ($714 million), with GSK owning 55 percent of the venture and Verily the rest.

In the growing field of bioelectronic medicine, the implants that are used to cuff a nerve are currently the size of a jelly bean. The aim is to make them as small as a grain of rice.

GSK brings medical knowledge to the table. Verily brings expertise in miniaturization.

“Many of the processes of the human body are controlled by electrical signals firing between the nervous system and the body’s organs, which may become distorted in many chronic diseases,” said Moncef Slaoui, GSK’s chairman of global vaccines. “Bioelectronic medicine’s vision is to employ the latest advances in biology and technology to interpret this electrical conversation and to correct the irregular patterns found in disease states, using miniaturized devices attached to individual nerves.”

The announcement comes less than a week after GSK pledged to invest 275 million pounds in three plants in Britain, sweeping aside concerns about growth following the country’s decision to leave the European Union.

Galvani Bioelectronics will employ around 30 scientists, engineers and clinicians.

Meat contributes to obesity as much as sugar, research suggests


The consumption of meat contributes just as much as sugar to the growing prevalence of global obesity, new research suggests.

According to scientists at the University of Adelaide, fats and carbohydrates can provide us with enough energy to meet our demands, and are digested faster than protein, meaning the energy stored in meat is used later, or if surplus to requirements, is converted and stored as fat in the body.

This means that increased availability of meat may be making a significant contribution to global waist sizes.

University of Adelaide PhD student Wenpeng You examined the global availability of sugar and meat and the impact it had on obesity rates in 170 countries, and found a strong correlation between the two.

After accounting for differences between countries, including levels of urbanisation, physical activity and calorific intake, the research found the availability of meat could account for 13% of the obesity rate – the same level as sugar.

Speaking about his research to the University of Adelaide website, Mr You said: “There is a dogma that fats and carbohydrates, especially fats, are the major factors contributing to obesity.

“Whether we like it or not, fats and carbohydrates in modern diets are supplying enough energy to meet our daily needs. Because meat protein is digested later than fats and carbohydrates, this makes the energy we receive from protein a surplus, which is then converted and stored as fat in the human body.”

The study differs from previous research into links between meat and obesity, which have linked meat’s fat content to weight problems.

But Mr You says it is the protein in meat which is directly responsible.

Professor Maciej Henneberg, head of the university’s Biological Anthropology and Comparative Anatomy Research Unit said: “Our findings are likely to be controversial because they suggest that meat contributes to obesity prevalence worldwide at the same extent as sugar.

“While we believe it’s important that the public should be alert to the over-consumption of sugar and some fats in their diets, based on our findings we believe meat protein in the human diet is also making a significant contribution to obesity.”

Mr You presented the findings of his work at the 18th International Conference on Nutrition and Food Sciences in Zurich, Switzerland.

After eradicating MSG from her diet, young girl stops experiencing autism-like symptoms


Brooke Reid was diagnosed as moderately autistic at the tender age of two. She had no eye contact, rigid play experiences, exhibited signs of obsessive compulsive disorder, was overcome by tantrums and couldn’t communicate socially. Brooke’s parents were both doctors. Her mother, Katherine Reid, Ph.D, is a biochemist. Her journey to help her daughter became a mission that is now assisting millions.

Natural News reports, ” . . . Dr. Reid’s free time was dedicated to researching autism and the struggles that other families were experiencing. Through her research, she learned that many children suffering from the disorder had improved symptoms after altering their diets to exclude monosodium glutamate (MSG), gluten and dairy products. . .Image: After eradicating MSG from her diet, young girl stops experiencing autism-like symptoms

“After Dr. Reid learned that naturally occurring glutamate was responsible for transmitting signals between neurons and other cells, she felt that an imbalanced diet filled with MSG could be worsening her daughter’s symptoms and potentially even the cause of them.

“. . . With MSG in nearly 95 percent of processed foods, and often unlabeled, Dr. Reid knew that it wouldn’t be easy eliminating it from Brooke’s diet; however, she was willing to try.

“Despite skepticism from the medical community regarding the link between autism and MSG, Dr. Reid withdrew MSG from her daughter’s diet and began seeing improvements in just five weeks.”

There were a series of nutritional therapies that Dr. Reid began to experiment with. She learned about thevitamin and mineral deficiencies that most Americans have. Her research on glutamate was eye opening, and in her words, “shocking,” as she discovered it’s not as easy to remove it from the diet, because it has fifty different names.