World’s Largest Genetic Hemophilia Research Repository Opens to U.S. Researchers


World’s Largest Genetic Hemophilia Research Repository Opens to U.S. Researchers

My Life, Our Future (MLOF), a national program founded by leaders in the hemophilia and blood disorder community, marked Feb. 28 — Rare Disease Day — by launching the world’s largest research repository of its kind to researchers and scholars.

The program is opening to U.S. scientists and will expand to worldwide scientists in 2018. It will start with a collection of genetic data and blood samples linked to phenotypic (observable disease characteristics) data from more than 5,000 people with hemophilia A and B. At least 100 hemophiliatreatment centers across the United States have chosen to participate.

The MLOF repository provides free genotyping, or analysis of a person’s DNA sequence, to American hemophiliacs who, for various reasons, have not received a genetic test. The goal is to increase genotyping and help patients learn about the genetic causes of their disorder.

The platform will also help researchers advance general understanding of hemophilia, as well as the genetic differences that affect bleeding severity and how reactions to treatment vary.

“Hemophilia is a complex disorder and prior to today, there was no genetic and phenotypic database of this scale aiding scientific innovation,” MLOF’s principal investigator, Barbara Konkle, MD, said in a press release. “With this new resource, researchers now have one source for the genetic data, repository samples and clinical data needed to investigate the many unanswered questions about hemophilia.”

The disease, which impairs the ability of one’s blood to clot, can be caused by nearly 4,000 genetic mutation). So far, the initiative has already identified more than 600 new genetic variants that lead to hemophilia. Through MLOF, patients can also donate unidentified genetic data and blood sample to the repository; 83 percent of those sampled so far have chosen to do so.

“We’re thankful to the thousands of people with hemophilia across the country who have opted to participate in this program,” said Val Bias, CEO of the National Hemophilia Foundation, one of MLOF’s founding partners. “They will positively impact the lives of a new generation.”

Researchers can submit applications for evaluation by the review committee, which will approve proposals based on their scientific merit and level of benefit for those with bleeding disorders.

“Over 100 hemophilia treatment centers across the country chose to participate in My Life, Our Future because they believed in the value of genotyping for their patients,” added Diane Aschman, president and CEO of the American Thrombosis and Hemostasis Network, another founding partner of the initiative. “We are hopeful that the genotypic data and samples, when combined with the phenotypic data in the ATHN [American Thrombosis and Hemostasis Network] dataset as collected by the participating centers, will catalyze research that can improve care and outcomes for people with hemophilia.”

Phase 3 Trials Evaluating Further Potential of 2 Treatments for Hemophilia A


Phase 3 Trials Evaluating Further Potential of 2 Treatments for Hemophilia A

Interim results of Phase 3 clinical studies investigating two major challenges in hemophilia — the development of inhibitors (antibodies to the drug used to treat bleeding episodes) and the need for repeated venous injection of blood clotting protein Factor VIII (FVIII) — were recently released.

The results were presented by Octapharma USA at the Hemostasis and Thrombosis Research Society Scientific Symposium held in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Nuwiq — Octapharma’s human cell line recombinant FVIII — is a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved intravenous therapy for patients with hemophilia A. This anti-hemophilic factor is indicated for on-demand treatment and management of perioperative bleeding episodes, as well as has a prophylaxis (preventive treatment).

The company reported preliminary data on its international, Phase 3 GENA-05 (NuProtect, NCT01712438) study. The research evaluated Nuwiq’s efficacy in preventing inhibitor development, or antibodies to treatment, in previously untreated patients. Overall, the study aims to determine the immunogenicity (the ability to cause an immune response) and the efficacy, safety and tolerability of Nuwiq over 100 exposure days (EDs), for a maximum period of five years from screening. The study is expected to finish in 2019.

Interim data was evaluated in 66 patients with at least 20 EDs, which is when the inhibitors are expected to arise. Of those people, 59 had FVIII gene mutations that could be analyzed. The researchers observed 47 patients with null mutations (mutant forms that do not generate RNA or a functional protein), 44 with high-risk mutations, and 1 with no mutation. Elevated concentration of inhibitors was observed in 8 of the 66 patients after 11.5 EDs. Five had developed low inhibitor concentration, of which four were transient. Two patients showed development of inhibitors after 20 EDs.

“This research is vitally important because there still remain major unmet medical needs for hemophilia A patients that can lead to significant morbidity,” Flemming Nielsen, president of Octapharma USA, said in a press release. “One is the high incidence of inhibitor development, which reduces the efficacy and effectiveness of FVIII therapies, leading to more frequent bleeding episodes.”

Octapharma is also studying the possible benefits of personalized prophylaxis in the frequency of Nuwiq’s dosing. In the GENA-21 (NuPreviq, NCT01863758) study, Nuwiq was initially administered three times per week or every other day in adults with hemophilia A. Subsequent dosing determinations showed a median dosing interval of 3.5 days, with 58% of patients with twice a week or fewer infusions.

To confirm the study’s data and to assess the benefit of individualized prophylaxis in previously treated patients, a multicenter Phase 3b study was initiated, GENA-21b (NCT02256917). Preliminary data in this ongoing trial show promise in leading to longer treatment intervals and lower FVIII requirement than in regular prophylaxis.

Currently, the median treatment interval with regular prophylaxis is 2.3 days, or three times per week. These results showed an increase to 3.5 days, leading to a recommended dosing frequency of twice per week or less in approximately 58% of patients. Moreover, the annual bleed rate was zero. Importantly, the data suggest a potential 21% decrease in FVIII consumption through personalized prophylaxis.

Octapharma also developed Wilate, which is FDA-approved for the treatment of spontaneous and trauma-induced bleeding episodes in patients with all types of von Willebrand disease (a genetic disorder caused by missing or defective von Willebrand clotting factor).

A Phase 3 study just getting underway, called WIL-27 (NCT02954575), will investigate the efficacy, safety, pharmacology and immunogenicity of Wilate in previously treated patients with severe hemophilia A. The study is currently recruiting up to 55 males ages 12 or older, in the U.S. and Europe. More information is available on its clinical trials.gov site.

Hemophilia Patients End Up at Emergency Rooms Most Often for Hypertension and Injuries


Hemophilia Patients End Up at Emergency Rooms Most Often for Hypertension and Injuries

Adult hemophilia patients use hospital emergency departments mainly due to cardiovascular events, while pediatric patients most frequently complain of injuries, according to researchers. U.S. emergency department (ED) visits by hemophilia patients had a national estimated cost of $60 million in 2012, the year studied.

These observations resulted from the retrospective and nationwide study, “Emergency department utilization by haemophilia patients in United States,”published in the scientific journal Haemophilia.

The authors accessed ED use by hemophilia patients in the United States by analyzing information collected from the Nationwide Emergency Department Sample (NEDS) database, which gathers national estimates of hospital-based ED visits from 2006 to 2014. Researchers focused on the years 2006 to 2013.

They found that hemophilia patients represented 0.016 percent of the total number of ED visits nationwide. Most of these patients were children and young adults, and 15 percent of them were female. About half of the registered ED visits were in large central metropolitan areas and suburbs, and a quarter to a third of patients lived in low-income neighborhoods.

There were no major changes in the number of ED visits per year during the eight years analyzed in the study. According to the information from the database, the month of June had more ED visits by hemophilic patients, probably because in the summer people are more active and prone to injuries, according to the authors.

Because of the large amount of information collected from the database, the authors decided to perform a more detailed analysis of the data from 2012.

In that year, 4,488 ED visits by hemophilia patients were registered, representing 1.4 in every 10,000 ED visits. Of the total, 84 percent were patients with hemophilia A and 16 percent had hemophilia B. The median age of the patients was 25 years, and over one-third of the patients were children under age 18.

In most of the cases, hemophilia patients that resort to the ED were managed and discharged. However, 29 percent of them were admitted to a hospital.

The most frequent complaints of hemophilia patients in emergency departments were cardiovascular events (hypertension) followed by injuries and/or poisoning. Thirty-two percent of the patients had hemorrhage complaints, of whom 3 percent had intracranial bleeds. Transfusion-related chronic infections, septicemia, and central venous access device (CVAD)-associated complications were other common complains reported in ED visits.

A more detailed analysis of the pediatric patients showed that injuries were the most frequent complaints reported at the emergency department, followed by joint and soft tissue disorders, fever, and CVAD complications.

Older patients were found to present more serious clinical events. Thirty-five older hemophilia patients died after being admitted to the hospital. The reported cause of death was sepsis in 26 of the cases, and brain hemorrhage in four patients.

In 2012, the average charge per visit to a private ED was about $2,988, and $2,254 in a public hospital. This difference may be indicative of the levels of comfort with the disease and its associated complications. An ED physician from a private hospital may need more testing and investigations compared to those from a public hospital, the authors explained.

“In conclusion, patients with hemophilia have a tendency to utilize ED. Hypertension was the single most common presenting complaint in adults,” the authors wrote. “Mortality rate of brain hemorrhages was zero in children but much higher in adults.”

More studies are needed to clarify the cause of a possible association of the high frequency of cardiovascular events and occurrence of deadly brain hemorrhages in patients with hemophilia, the authors concluded.

10 Tips for a ‘Common Sense Approach’ to Life With a Chronic Illness


While living with a chronic illness can be challenging, there are ways that you can make life easier and live a happy and fulfilling life. Establishing good habits and routines takes time, but as Gunnar Esiason points out in his blog Own It, there are some “common sense approaches” to living life with a chronic illness that everyone can find useful.

Follow Directions
It’s tempting to cut corners sometimes, especially if you’re running late or tired, but taking medications and therapies as prescribed and for the required amount of time will prevent you from becoming sick. Skipping meds or only partially doing therapies, not cleaning or maintaining equipment may save you a little bit of time in the short run, but may result in you becoming sick.

Designate a First Responder
Designate a person (or persons) who you can rely on to know what to do if you have a medical emergency. This can be a member of your family, a colleague, or a friend. Make sure they know how to respond to any exacerbations you may experience.

Be Organized
Keep any medications, equipment or paperwork that has to do with your health condition in good order. If you need to take medications at different times of the day, set reminders on your cellphone. Keep all paperwork in an organized folder so everything you need is easily found. Use weekly pill boxes to keep a week’s supply of meds ready. Ensure all equipment is cleaned after use so it’s ready for the next time.

While living with a chronic illness can be challenging, there are ways that you can make life easier and live a happy and fulfilling life. Establishing good habits and routines takes time, but as Gunnar Esiason points out in his blog Own It, there are some “common sense approaches” to living life with a chronic illness that everyone can find useful.

Follow Directions
It’s tempting to cut corners sometimes, especially if you’re running late or tired, but taking medications and therapies as prescribed and for the required amount of time will prevent you from becoming sick. Skipping meds or only partially doing therapies, not cleaning or maintaining equipment may save you a little bit of time in the short run, but may result in you becoming sick.

Designate a First Responder
Designate a person (or persons) who you can rely on to know what to do if you have a medical emergency. This can be a member of your family, a colleague, or a friend. Make sure they know how to respond to any exacerbations you may experience.

Be Organized
Keep any medications, equipment or paperwork that has to do with your health condition in good order. If you need to take medications at different times of the day, set reminders on your cellphone. Keep all paperwork in an organized folder so everything you need is easily found. Use weekly pill boxes to keep a week’s supply of meds ready. Ensure all equipment is cleaned after use so it’s ready for the next time.

While living with a chronic illness can be challenging, there are ways that you can make life easier and live a happy and fulfilling life. Establishing good habits and routines takes time, but as Gunnar Esiason points out in his blog Own It, there are some “common sense approaches” to living life with a chronic illness that everyone can find useful.

Follow Directions
It’s tempting to cut corners sometimes, especially if you’re running late or tired, but taking medications and therapies as prescribed and for the required amount of time will prevent you from becoming sick. Skipping meds or only partially doing therapies, not cleaning or maintaining equipment may save you a little bit of time in the short run, but may result in you becoming sick.

Designate a First Responder
Designate a person (or persons) who you can rely on to know what to do if you have a medical emergency. This can be a member of your family, a colleague, or a friend. Make sure they know how to respond to any exacerbations you may experience.

Be Organized
Keep any medications, equipment or paperwork that has to do with your health condition in good order. If you need to take medications at different times of the day, set reminders on your cellphone. Keep all paperwork in an organized folder so everything you need is easily found. Use weekly pill boxes to keep a week’s supply of meds ready. Ensure all equipment is cleaned after use so it’s ready for the next time.

 

Women with Hemophilia


Even though hemophilia mostly affects men, women who are carriers of the faulty gene causing hemophilia A and hemophilia B may also experience mild symptoms. They are rarely diagnosed with the disease, however, because the condition is not severe, allowing them to lead full lives. (In hemophilia C, women and men are equally affected).

Women who are carriers have one healthy and one mutated copy of the hemophilia gene on each X chromosome. The disease only truly develops if both copies of the hemophilia gene are mutated, and this is rare occurrence.  In most carriers, one X chromosome gene is healthy and produces enough clotting factor to protect carriers from more severe forms of hemophilia, although clotting factor levels can vary.

Clotting factor levels in carriers generally range from 30 to 70 percent of normal levels, enough to protect from severe bleeding. One common symptom in hemophilia carriers, however, is heavy menstrual bleeding.

Women who have less than 30 percent of normal clotting factor levels are usually said to have mild hemophilia, and up to 60 percent of carriers are thought to have some degree of bleeding problems.

Abnormal bleeding: When to see a doctor

Because women are not usually warned about the possibility of having hemophilia, they should be on the lookout for these symptoms:

  • Menorrhagia, heavy or prolonged menstrual bleeding
  • Abnormal bleeding after childbirth
  • Bruising easily
  • Frequent or prolonged nosebleeds
  • Bleeding abnormally after dental procedures
  • Bleeding abnormally after surgery or trauma

About menorrhagia

Many women do not think of heavy menstrual bleeding as a sign of a bleeding disorder, and consequently don’t speak with a doctor about it. It’s common to think of it as a life-long personal characteristic.

However, menorrhagia can have significant effects on a woman’s life, including chronic fatigue, lost work hours, abnormally severe pain during menstruation (dysmenorrhea), and mood swings.

Unusual menstrual bleeding can also lead a doctor to recommend a hysterectomy, rather than checking for possible hemophilia.

If you suspect you might have a bleeding disorder, ask your doctor to rule out hemophilia first by measuring the level of two clotting factors (factor VIII for hemophilia A and factor IX for hemophilia B) in your blood. A genetic test may also be undertaken to determine the nature of your mutation.

In adolescents, the start of a girl’s menstrual cycle is often accompanied by heavier bleeding. If there is a known family history of hemophilia or any other bleeding disorder, girls should be closely followed through puberty by a gynecologist, a hematologist specialized in bleeding disorders, or a family physician or pediatrician.

Pregnancy and childbirth for women with hemophilia

Pregnancy, as well as childbirth, can also be challenging for women with bleeding disorders. It is critical that a woman’s healthcare team is aware of a carrier (or hemophilia) status so plans can be made for a safe delivery. This includes ensuring for safety measures at the time of birth, and regular monitoring of clotting factors to prevent major bleeding, especially as the date of delivery approaches.

Delivery should be as gentle as possible, for both the mother and the baby. Natural delivery without the use of instruments (forceps, or a suction extraction) is recommended. Use of an epidural or a deep intramuscular injection also are not advised.

According to the Canadian Hemophilia Society, women with hemophilia should talk to their doctors about factor replacement therapy during the first three months of pregnancy to lower the risk of miscarriage.

Plasma-derived factor concentrates can transmit a common virus known as parvovirus B19, which may cause a miscarriage. Pregnant women or those who might become pregnant are advised to avoid factor concentrates made from plasma, if possible. Possible alternatives that might be considered under a physician’s guidance include desmopressin, antifibrinolytic agents, and recombinant (artificial) factor concentrates for deficiencies in factor VII, VIII and IX.

Women with bleeding disorders, however, are often protected from bleeding episodes while pregnant, because of higher-than-usual hormone levels.

After birth, women can maintain these higher hormone levels by breastfeeding – helping to protect them from bleeding in the weeks following delivery.

If a bleeding disorder is suspected in a newborn, parents can request that a sample of cord blood be tested for the disease, and can request that the vitamin K (normally given to the baby shortly after birth) be given by mouth, and not by injection, to prevent bleeding at the site of the injection.

General precautions for women with hemophilia

Women with a bleeding disorder may need to follow some general precautions to prevent excessive bleeding, like avoiding medications that affect the platelets, clotting proteins in the blood. Of note, these drugs are often taken to ease menstrual cramps.

Common examples are aspirin, drugs containing aspirin (Midol or Alka-Seltzer), and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (Advil or Aleve). These drugs are often prescribed to ease menstrual cramps but can actually make bleeding worse.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice, and for information about a drug you are planning to take.

What to Know About Hemophilia in Women


Hemophilia is a rare blood disease which usually occurs in males. In fact, it’s extremely rare for women to be born with the condition because of the way it’s passed down genetically. A female would need to inherit two copies of the faulty gene — one from each parent — to develop hemophilia A, B or C. Boys only need to inherit one copy of the faulty gene responsible for hemophilia A and B, but both parents’ faulty gene for hemophilia C.

However, women can be carriers of the disease and may also experience issues with clotting factor. These women often only possess between 30 percent and 70 percent of the clotting factor of someone who isn’t a carrier. This is usually enough to protect from severe bleeds but can lead to problems with heavy menstruation.

Women who do have hemophilia may only be aware of the problem if they have skin that bruises easily and experience symptoms such as excessive and frequent nosebleeds, heavy bleeding after childbirth, heavy periods, or prolonged bleeding following surgical or dental procedures.

Women may also develop acquired hemophilia later in life. Acquired hemophilia usually affects older people and can be a complication of an autoimmune disease such as inflammatory bowel disease or cancer. In very rare cases, women can develop the disease following childbirth.

37 Things Jalaluddin Rumi Can Teach You about Love


37 Things Jalaluddin Rumi Can Teach You about Love

There are so many wonderful things the great Sufi poet, Jalaluddin Rumi can teach you about Love. And when I say Love, I am referring to that pure, truthful and precious love we all seek for – Love that can be found at the core of each of every one of us – and Love that you will hopefully find more of after reading these beautiful Rumi quotes.

Enjoy 🙂

1. YOUR SOUL IS GOD’S LOVER.

“Soul, if you want to learn secrets, your heart must forget about shame and dignity. You are God’s lover, yet you worry what people are saying.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

2. LOVE IS THE BRIDGE BETWEEN YOU AND EVERYTHING.

“Love is the bridge between you and everything.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

3. WHAT YOU SEEK IS SEEKING YOU

“What you seek is seeking you.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

4. LOVERS DON’T FINALLY MEET SOMEWHERE. THEY’RE IN EACH OTHER ALL ALONG.

“If you find me not within you, you will never find me. For I have been with you, from the beginning of me.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

“The minute I heard my first love story, I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along.”

“A lover asked his beloved, Do you love yourself more than you love me? Beloved replied, I have died to myself and I live for you. I’ve disappeared from myself and my attributes, I am present only for you. I’ve forgotten all my learnings, but from knowing you I’ve become a scholar. I’ve lost all my strength, but from your power I am able. I love myself…I love you. I love you…I love myself.”

5. IT IS THE INNER BOND THAT DRAWS ONE PERSON TO ANOTHER, NOT WORDS.

“Words are a pretext. It is the inner bond that draws one person to another, not words.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

6. GAMBLE EVERYTHING FOR LOVE.

“Gamble everything for love, if you are a true human being. If not, leave this gathering. Half-heartedness doesn’t reach into majesty.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

7. LOVE CALLS – EVERYWHERE AND ALWAYS.

“Love calls – everywhere and always. We’re sky bound. Are you coming?” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

8. LOVE IS THE CURE.

“Love is the cure, for your pain will keep giving birth to more pain until your eyes constantly exhale love as effortlessly as your body yields its scent.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

9. LIFE WITHOUT LOVE IS DEATH.

“To live without you is to be robbed of love and what is life without it? To live without you is death to me, my love but some call it life.” ~Jalaluddin Rumi

10. TAKE SOMEONE WHO DOESN’T KEEP SCORE.

“Whenever we manage to love without expectations, calculations, negotiations, we are indeed in heaven.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

“Take someone who doesn’t keep score, who’s not looking to be richer, or afraid of losing, who has not the slightest interest even in his own personality: he’s free.”

11. A THOUSAND HALF-LOVES MUST BE FORSAKEN TO TAKE ONE WHOLE HEART HOME.

“A thousand half-loves must be forsaken to take one whole heart home.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

12. ANYTHING YOU LOSE COMES ROUND IN ANOTHER FORM.

“Don’t grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

“Where there is ruin, there is hope for a treasure.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

13. YOUR TASK IS NOT TO SEEK FOR LOVE.

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ― Jalaluddin Rumi

14. BE GRATEFUL FOR WHOEVER COMES YOUR WAY.

“Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

15. PAIN CAN BECOME YOUR GREATEST ALLY.

“Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, your pain can become your greatest ally in your life’s search for love and wisdom.” ~Jalaluddin Rumi

“The wound is the place where the Light enters you.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

16. LET GO OF THINKING.

“Put your thoughts to sleep, do not let them cast a shadow over the moon of your heart. Let go of thinking.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

17. THERE IS A SECRET MEDICINE GIVEN ONLY TO THOSE WHO HURT SO HARD THEY CAN’T HOPE.

“There is a secret medicine given only to those who hurt so hard they can’t hope. The hopers would feel slighted if they knew.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

18. GOODBYES ARE ONLY FOR THOSE WHO LOVE WITH THEIR EYES.

“Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

19. REASON IS POWERLESS IN THE EXPRESSION OF LOVE.

“Reason is powerless in the expression of Love.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

20. LET THE BEAUTY OF WHAT YOU LOVE BE WHAT YOU DO.

“Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

21. WHEREVER YOU ARE, AND WHATEVER YOU DO, BE IN LOVE.

“Wherever you are, and whatever you do, be in love.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

22. RAISE YOUR WORDS, NOT YOUR VOICE.

“Raise your words, not voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

23. THE WAY YOU MAKE LOVE IS THE WAY GOD WILL BE WITH YOU.

“Remember. The way you make love is the way God will be with you.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

24. LOVE IS OUR MOTHER.

“We are born of love; Love is our mother.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

25. THROUGH LOVE, ALL THAT IS BITTER WILL BE SWEET.

“Through Love, all that is bitter will be sweet, Through Love all that is copper will be gold, Through Love, all dregs will become wine, through Love all pain will turn to medicine. ” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

26. THE HEART KNOWS NO BOUNDARIES.

“I am neither of the East nor of the West, no boundaries exist within my breast.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

27. LOVE IS BEYOND WORDS.

“However much I might try to expound or explain Love, when I come to Love itself, I am ashamed of my explanations… Love alone can explain the mysteries of love and lovers..” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

28. PLANT THE LOVE OF THE HOLY ONES WITHIN YOUR SPIRIT.

“Plant the love of the holy ones within your spirit; don’t give your heart to anything, but the love of those whose hearts are glad.” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

29. LET LOVE BE YOUR COMPANION.

“I have no companion but Love, no beginning, no end, no dawn. The Soul calls from within me: ‘You, ignorant of the way of Love, set Me free.’” ~ Jalaluddin Rumi

30. CRAVE A LOVE SO DEEP THE OCEAN WOULD BE JEALOUS.

“I crave a love so deep the ocean would be jealous.”

31. DON’T PLANT ANYTHING BUT LOVE.

“With life as short as a half-taken breath, don’t plant anything but love.”

32. YOU ARE A LOVER OF YOUR OWN EXPERIENCE.

“You are a lover of your own experience … not of me … you turn to me to feel ur own emotion”

33. THE GIFTS OF LOVERS TO ONE ANOTHER TESTIFY TO INVISIBLE LOVE.

“The gifts of lovers to one another are, in respect to love, nothing but forms; yet, they testify to invisible love.”

34. ALL FEAR BECOME INSIGNIFICANT ONCE THE INTENTION OF LIFE BECOMES LOVE.

“All doubt, despair and fear become insignificant once the intention of life becomes love.”

35. IN THE HOUSE OF LOVERS, THE MUSIC NEVER STOPS.

“In the house of lovers, the music never stops, the walls are made of songs & the floor dances”

36. LOVE IS THE WHOLE THING. WE ARE ONLY PIECES

“I, you, he, she, we In the garden of mystic lovers, these are not true distinctions.”

37. SPEAK WITH THE LANGUAGE OF LOVE.

“Listen with ears of tolerance! See through the eyes of compassion! Speak with the language of love.”

Science Examined People Who Claim Not To Eat Or Drink. What They Found Is Mind-Boggling!


Breathariansim refers to the practice of sustaining oneself without the need for food. This concept is not new; in fact, for thousands of years, various cultures around the world have written of this ability. In the third book of the Yoga Sutras, for example, approximately twenty-five siddhis are listed as having extraordinary abilities. This is a common theme throughout Buddhism, and various other spiritual traditions as well. Clairvoyance, psychokinesis, and many more are all special traits attributed to the siddhis, as is the liberation from hunger and thirst.

Though modern day science has seen evidence of extended human capacities like telepathy, remote viewing, and pre-cognition, very little work has gone into examining breatharianism. Some brilliant minds do believe it’s possible, however, including Nikola Tesla. In 1901, he made the following argument:

My idea is that the development of life must lead to forms of existence that will be possible without nourishment and which will not be shackled by consequent limitations. Why should a living being not be able to obtain all the energy it needs for the performance of its life functions from the environment, instead of through consumption of food, and transforming, by a complicated process, the energy of chemical combinations into life-sustaining energy? (source)

Liberation from food and hunger does indeed sound unrealistic and, from what we know of modern day biology, impossible. But the history of science has shown us many times that the impossible can become the possible in an instant. A great example of this is the recent discovery that humans can actually influence their autonomic immune system using the power of the mind.

Let’s take a look at what happened when people who claimed that they don’t eat were examined by science.

BREATHARIANISM

The Qigong practice of Bigu, and Qigong practices (which include the liberation from food) examined by science have yielded some extraordinary results. A study published in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine, as seen in the the US National Library of Medicine, demonstrated that a woman with special abilities was and is able to accelerate the germination of specific seeds for the purposes of developing a more robust seed stock. This is one example of many;

The Catholic Charism of India also involves the claim of living well without eating food. Dean Radin, Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, explains the concept in his book Supernormal: Science, Yoga, and the Evidence for Extraordinary Psychic Abilities:

The implication is that the human body can transmute ambient energy into nutrients, and through the practice of cultivating this ability one can live comfortably for as long as one wishes without food, and possibly without drinking water. This is described as a siddhi in the Yoga Sutras as Pada 111.30: liberation from hunger and thirst.

This flies in the face of a substantial body of medical knowledge, which has established that the human body can last about five days without water, and a few weeks at most without food. Beyond that, you’re dead. As a result, despite a host of historical examples of people lasting for years without eating, and sometimes without drinking, most nutritionists and biochemists regard such claims to be ridiculously impossible, and the people who make the claims—currently dozens to hundreds worldwide—to be seriously delusional. Some of those claimants may well be delusional. But all of them? 

PRAHLAD JANI

Prahlad Jani is a local of Ahmedabad, India, who claims that at the age of 11, the Hindu goddess Amba appeared to him and told him that he would no longer have to eat food. He has apparently lived in a cave since the 1970s, and claims not to have eaten anything for most of his 81 years (as of 2012).

Jani was tested in 2003 and in 2010 at Ahmedabad’s Sterling Hospital by Dr. Sudhir Shah and his large team of doctors. Dr. Shah is a consultant neurologist who has been practicing for 20 years, as well as a professor and department head of neurology at KM School of PG Medicine and Research.

During the first test, which took place in 2003, Jani was monitored 24/7 by hospital staff and video cameras, where it was confirmed that Jani neither ate nor drank. He also did not show any physiological changes which, according to modern day medicine, should be impossible. This test took place over a 10 day period. Although it might not seem like a significant amount of time, to go 10 days without food and water and not experience any physiological changes is actually quite astounding.

He was tested again at Sterling Hospital in 2010 from April 22nd to May 6th. This time, he was observed by thirty-five researchers from the Indian Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences, among other organizations. This time, Jani was observed to not eat or drink for two weeks. As with the previous test, he exhibited no deleterious effects from this abstention.

This truly is unbelievable, and goes against everything we know about both human physiology and the nutritional requirements of the body.

As one might expect, neither these tests nor their results were published in medical journals. The studies have also generated a lot of criticism. The main arguments against these tests were, however, quite weak in my opinion. One argument holds that Jani escaped the scrutiny of the hospital staff and video cameras with the assistance of his disciples, and that he did in fact eat/drink something. Yet hospital staff maintains this is impossible because he was monitored around the clock, as per the requirements of the study.

Even with these criticisms, the evidence is solid and appears to correspond with a known siddhi.

A statement from a scientific group (which included the Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences) given to ABC News back in 2012 reads as follows:

We realized that, if this whole phenomenon really exists in a human being even for 15 days, it would have immense application in unraveling secrets of medical science and its application for human welfare.

Instead of ignoring this case, we selected to investigate further, in a rational and scientific way. We again make it clear that the purpose of this study was not to prove or disprove a person, but to explore a possibility in science and study a new phenomenon. (source)

It’s an interesting case, isn’t it?

Read more about this extraordinary individual here.

MICHAEL WERNER

Another case comes from a doctor of chemistry named Michael Werner, who is the managing director of a pharmaceutical research institute in Switzerland. This man claims to not have eaten any solid food since January 1st, 2001. He was studied in a ten-day observational test in October 2004 by the intensive care unit at a hospital in Switzerland, and as with Jani, displayed no significant or dangerous physiological changes. These results have yet to be published, however.

Dean Radin offers an insightful explanation for why these results might not ever be published, and for why not much attention has been given to this phenomenon:

Perhaps the most curious aspect of the breatharian tests is the in-your-face nature of the claimed phenomenon and yet an almost complete lack of interest from the scientific community. If it is possible to live well without eating food, this ought to be easy to demonstrate, and if it held up, the scientific and social consequences would be astounding. 

The fact is, as with many other observed phenomena that science can’t explain, most researchers regard things like this as ridiculous and extremely unlikely, and therefore don’t even take the time to look into them. They dismiss the claims out of hand rather than approaching them with scientific neutrality and curiosity.

Another reason for this silence could be simple fear; researchers rely on funding from various parties, and they know it will be denied them if the topic seems too ‘out there.’ They also know what kind of criticism they would face from the mainstream scientific community should they go ahead and publish a study on something so esoteric.

Werner learned of breathariansim from an Australian spiritual teacher names Jasmuheen, who teaches how to transition from eating to not eating. And Jasmuheen has also been the subject of a study, but she began showing signs of stress, high blood pressure, and dehydration after just 48 hours. As most of you reading this know, this is not something you can just go and try. It can be very dangerous, and there have been multiple reports of deaths occurring as a result of people engaging in this practice. Clearly, there is much more involved than simply refraining from eating or drinking.

THE SCIENCE OF FASTING

Science is now showing just how beneficial food deprivation can be. Mark Mattson, the current Chief of the Laboratory of Neuroscience at the National Institute on Aging and a Professor of Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University, gave a great TED talk on fasting in 2014. This practice has been shown to generate new stem cells, repair DNA, fight cancer, fight both Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, and more.

It’s also interesting to note that all caloric restriction models in animal studies have shown significant health benefits and improvements, including a longer life span.

Obstacles to riding safely through pregnancy revealed: Study


In the UK, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) and the National Health Service (NHS) both recommend pregnant women engage in daily exercise, but when it comes to cycling, the advice dries up: there are no clear recommendations women can use to decide whether to continue cycling.

Riding During Pregnancy
During pregnancy, depending on women’s proportions and the type of bike, the growing belly can feel physically restrictive.

Pregnant women could get on their bikes and stay healthy with better support, but according to a new study, they are encountering obstacles to riding.

Medical advice from risk-averse health professionals may contribute to some women’s decisions to stop cycling to work during pregnancy, meaning they miss out on the potential benefits of the active commute. The recent research revealed the reasons why women decide to stop or continue cycling to work when they are pregnant, including often ambiguously worded or overly-cautious advice from medical guidelines, midwives and obstetricians.

More people than ever are commuting to work by bicycle in London. According to data from the 2011 census, the city saw a 144% increase in cycle-commuting over the previous decade. This has big health benefits, for the health of the individual cyclist as well as for public health more broadly, as it helps people move more as part of their everyday activities.

In the UK, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) and the National Health Service (NHS) both recommend pregnant women engage in daily exercise to help manage common discomforts, reduce pregnancy complications like preeclampsia, reduce discomfort and improve mood. But when it comes to cycling, the advice dries up: there are no clear recommendations women can use to decide whether to continue cycling.

“Despite the clear health benefits of cycling and the push to get more people commuting by bike, especially in cities like London, the medical advice on cycling during pregnancy remains murky,” commented author Davara Lee Bennett. “My research aimed to explore why women do – and don’t – cycle to work when they’re pregnant, with a view to supporting informed decision-making – including, if women so wish, rocking the rust off their chains, and bringing their bikes out from under the stairs and into the light.”

Bennett conducted three individual interviews and held three focus group discussions: with a group of women who had stopped cycling early, a group that had carried on into later pregnancy and a mixed group. She recorded and transcribed all of them, and analyzed the transcripts line-by-line to develop themes.

 

The resulting factors that affected women’s decisions fell into a few main areas: physical obstacles and enablers, perceptions of risk and of pregnancy itself and advice. The idea of risk was a key factor in decisions about continued cycling: women adjusted their cycling practices to minimize risk, taking partners’ support or concern into account. Although some women had positive encounters with health professionals, the medical advice they received was often noncommittal or risk-averse.

During pregnancy, depending on women’s proportions and the type of bike, the growing belly can feel physically restrictive. Some women stopped cycling because of this, while others found comfort from their daily aches and pains when they commuted by bike. Either way, more comfortable bikes helped: women preferred Dutch-style, upright designs with a low crossbar and a wide, supportive seat.

Perceptions of pregnancy also had an impact on women’s decisions: some preferred to abandon their active commute, opting for a more peaceful state, while others continued to cycle in a bid to remain connected to their authentic selves.

“Understanding the obstacles to women’s cycling during pregnancy can support the development of safer cycling infrastructure and informed medical guidelines, ultimately offering more women the opportunity to benefit from an active commute,” said Bennett. “By addressing some of the more socially prohibitive public discourses on the topic, I hope that my research will not just enable informed decision-making by women, but also encourage more constructive support and advice for women from health professionals.” The study appears in the Journal of Transport & Health.

Prenatal exposure to alcohol and stress may up aggression in kids, says study


Epigenetic changes, caused by alcohol, smoking and stressful pregnancies are linked to early onset of fighting, lying and stealing habits in children, warns a study.

Pregnancy
Epigenetic changes present at birth could be linked to conduct problems in children.

Exposure to alcohol, smoking and stressful events during pregnancy can lead to epigenetic changes – external modifications to DNA that turn genes ‘on’ or ‘off’ – at birth, linked to early onset of fighting, lying and stealing habits in children, warns a study.

According to researchers from King’s College London and the University of Bristol, epigenetic changes present at birth – in genes related to addiction and aggression, could be linked to conduct problems in children.

Conduct problems (CP) such as fighting, lying and stealing are the most common reason for child treatment referral in the UK. Senior author of the study Dr Edward Barker said that children with early-onset conduct problems are much more likely to engage in antisocial behaviour as adults, so this is clearly a very important group to look at from a societal point of view.

Children who develop conduct problems before the age of 10 (known as early-onset CP) are at a much higher risk for severe and chronic antisocial behaviour across the lifespan, resulting in further social costs related to crime, welfare dependence and health-care needs.Genetic factors are known to strongly influence conduct problems, explaining between 50-80% of the differences between children who develop problems and those who do not.

Understanding changes in DNA methylation, an epigenetic process that regulates how genes are ‘switched on and off’, could aid the development of more effective approaches to preventing later conduct problems. The study used data from Bristol’s Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) to examine associations between DNA methylation at birth and conduct problems from the ages of four to 13.

Children with early-onset conduct problems are much more likely to engage in antisocial behaviour as adults. (Shutterstock )

They also measured the influence of environmental factors previously linked to early onset of conduct problems, including maternal diet, smoking, alcohol use and exposure to stressful life events. They found that at birth, epigenetic changes in seven sites across children’s DNA differentiated those who went on to develop early-onset versus those who did not.

Some of these epigenetic differences were associated with prenatal exposures, such as smoking and alcohol use during pregnancy. One of the genes which showed the most significant epigenetic changes, called MGLL, is known to play a role in reward, addiction and pain perception.

Barker added that there is good evidence that exposure to maternal smoking and alcohol is associated with developmental problems in children, yet they don’t know how increased risk for conduct problems occurs