Categories
Canada

A Quebec team is developing a treatment to degrade microplastics

A team from the National Scientific Research Institute (INRS) has developed an electrolytic treatment of wastewater that shows promise in breaking down microplastics, these tiny plastic balls that are found mostly in our clothes and which are very polluting.

As the director of a new study published in the journal “Environmental pollution” explains, Professor Patrick Drogui, the electrolytic oxidation treatment of wastewater does not require any chemical additions.

“Through electrodes, we generate hydroxyl radicals (OH) which attack microplastics. This process is respectful of the environment, because it degrades them in the form of molecules of CO2 and water, non-toxic for the ecosystem, “said the researcher in a statement released Monday.

The results published by the INRS team are eloquent: the degradation efficiency was 89% when the technique was used on water artificially contaminated with polystyrene.

The solution is not a master key, however, as wastewater discharged from municipalities, for example, has a more complex content. “Real water contains other materials that can interfere with the degradation process, such as carbonates and phosphates which can scavenge radicals and reduce the performance of the oxidation process,” said Professor Drogui, who is also responsible. scientist from the Laboratory of Environmental Electrotechnologies and Oxidative Processes (LEEPO).

“If the technology proves effective on real water from commercial laundry facilities, the research group is planning a study to verify the cost of treatment and adapt the technology to treat larger amounts of wastewater. In a few years, the technology could be implemented in a laundry room, “the statement said.

Microplastics are a modern plague of waterways. A large British and American study published in the fall suggested that up to 125 billion particles of microplastics could float on the surface of the oceans. Some microplastics have even been found near the top of Mount Everest.

Categories
Health

Vitamins and Supplements to Take After Breast Cancer Treatment



SOURCES:

American Cancer Society: “Can I Lower My Risk of Breast Cancer Progressing or Coming Back?” “Study Finds Antioxidants Risky During Breast Cancer Chemotherapy.”

Anita Johnson, MD, breast cancer program director, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Atlanta.

Kelly Rashid, RD, Fort Lauderdale, FL.

Breastcancer.org: “Dietary Supplements,” “Suggestions for Using Supplements,” “Vitamin D.”

Tara Scott, MD, Revitalize Medical Group, Akron, OH.

MD Anderson: “Probiotics: Healthy Bacteria for Your Gut.”

Living Beyond Breast Cancer: “September 2015 Ask the Expert: Vitamins and Supplements.”

Johns Hopkins Medicine: “Reducing Risk of Recurrence.”





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Entertainment USA

If You’re Breaking Out, This Cult-Favorite Acne Treatment With 17k Reviews Will Clear It Up In No Time

Considering all of the stress the past year has caused us, you may be suffering from breakouts & luckily this cult-favorite acne treatment is on sale for $17!

If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, we may receive an affiliate commission. 

The year 2020 was extremely stressful for all of us and unfortunately, with stress comes breakouts. Luckily, if you want to banish your zits fast, look no further than the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion which is a cult-favorite beauty product loved by millions of people. The lotion is currently on sale at Amazon for just $17 and it has over 17,000 positive reviews.

Get the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion here for $17.

The product comes in a 1-ounce bottle full of pink drying lotion. It’s formulated with salicylic acid, sulfur, and calamine which work together to exfoliate the skin while drawing out impurities, gunk, bacteria, and dirt. The bottle can not be shaken, and instead, keep it upright, dip a q-tip inside to bottle, and dab the product on the spots you want to treat. It’s recommended to apply before bed because the product is pink and it works well overnight as it sucks out dirt and build-up. You will be shocked when you wake up because not only will your pimples be gone, but your skin will be smooth and zit-free.

There’s a reason why over 17,000 people gave this product positive reviews and it’s because people swear by it. One happy customer gushed, “I don’t understand how this works, but it works! You dip a cotton bud into the bottle, right to the bottom, where all the pink liquid is resting. Then the cotton bud is dragged upwards through the liquid. Dab the cotton bud on to your spot, at night, and go to sleep. Your spot will disappear in the morning! It’s insane. It seems to work best on whiteheads for me – those active, greasy, liquid-filled spots. It doesn’t work on red scars or anything, but you wouldn’t expect it to. Anyway, I’ve recommended this product to 3 people after just a few weeks! I love it!”

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Entertainment UK

Dr Dre speaks out from hospital bed after emergency treatment for brain aneurysm

Dr Dre has spoken from his hospital bed after being treated at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles after suffering a brain aneurysm on Monday.

TMZ reported that the 55-year-old music mogul was rushed to hospital by ambulance and was taken direct to intensive care, where he is being treated.

Dre has now addressed his fans directly with an update posted on Instagram.

He paid thanks to the medical team at the hospital and to all those that had sent him goodwill messages since it was revealed that he was in hospital.

Dr Dre has updated his fans about his hospitalisation

The rapper, whose real name is Andre Romelle Young, was reportedly “stable and lucid” and he told his fans: “Thanks to my family, friends and fans for their interest and well wishes.

“I’m doing great and getting excellent care from my medical team.”

He continued: “I will be out of the hospital and back home soon. Shout out to all the great medical professionals at Cedars. One Love!!”

A brain aneurysm is a “bulge” in a blood vessel caused by a weakness in the vessel, with the build-up of pressure in the blood vessel can cause it to “bulge outwards like a balloon”.

Dr Dre has suffered a brain aneurysm

Among those that shared well wishes, was Dre’s fellow NWA bandmate Ice Cube, who took to social media and shared a snap of them together, with the caption: “Send your love and prayers to the homie Dr. Dre.”

Missy Elliott added: “Prayers up for Dr Dre and his family for healing & strength over his mind & body.”

Fans of Dr Dre rushed to share their thoughts, with one writing: “come back stronger king!”

Another wrote: “Legend !!!!! Thank you for this !! This is beautiful!”

Do you have a story to sell? Get in touch with us at [email protected] or call us direct 0207 29 33033.

Categories
Bollywood

Here’s how Taapsee Pannu shut up troll who asked her to take care until she found treatment


Taapsee Pannu has replied to a troll who passed a sarcastic comment at her recent tweet about how there is no cure for misunderstanding and over confidence. The actor replied to him in Hindi and assured him that as long as people like him exist, she will always be in her senses.

Taapsee had tweeted in sarcasm on Sunday, “Chalo ab corona ka bhi ilaaj hai. Bas ab galatfehmi aur overconfidence ka ilaaj nahi hai bas Face with rolling eyes #SundayThoughts (Finally we have a cure for corona. Now only misunderstanding and overconfidence are incurable).”

 

Reacting to it, a Twitter user wrote, “Sabka ilaj hoga. Till then take care of yourself (everyone will get treated, till then take care of yourself).”

This did not go down well with Taapsee who went on to reply to him in Hindi, “Sir take care ka hi toh nateeja hai ki hum jaise thode bohot abhi satke nahi hai varna kuch logo ki koshish jaari hai maansik santulan hilaane ki. Vaise aap ki shubhchinta aur dhyaan ke liye dhanyavaad. Aap jab tak hai humein apni sehat aur sanmati pe poora Vishwas rahega (Sir, this is the result of ‘taking care’ that a few of us are yet to lose our mental balance, otherwise people have been doing their best to make us crazy. By the way, thanks for your good wishes and concern. As long as you exist, we will always have faith in our health and thoughts).”

Also read: Kriti Sanon fulfills her dream of riding a bike to this song on sets of Bachchan Pandey, reveals it was ‘day 1 of learning’. Watch

Taapsee just wrapped up the Ranchi schedule of her upcoming film, Rashami Rocket. She plays an athlete called Rashami from Gujarat in the film. Besides that, she also has cricketer Mithali Raj’s biopic Shaabash Mithu, Looop Lapeta and Haseen Dillruba in the pipeline. She was last seen in Anubhav Sinha directorial, Thappad.

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Birmingham Headlines UK London

Patients from London could be taken to YORKSHIRE for treatment

London’s intensive care units have asked several major Yorkshire hospitals to accept a transfer of critically ill patients as the capital’s hospitals surpass maximum capacity. 

Leaked figures have revealed that England’s critical care capacity is now running at over 100 per cent at a number of hospitals across London, the south east, and east, the Health Service Journal reports.

It is not known when patients will be transferred out of the capital, or if Yorkshire’s hospitals will agree to take them. NHS critical care patients are rarely transferred such long distances.

A senior intensive care source confirmed to HSJ that a lack of capacity in the Tier 4 capital had seen a number of requests for patients to be transferred to hospitals in Tier 3 Yorkshire. 

Data from the internal NHS critical care capacity dashboard – leaked to HSJ – showed that London had far surpassed its maximum capacity with intensive care units 114 per cent full on Monday night. 

The south east was not far behind with ICUs at 113 per cent capacity. In the east of England the leaked capacity data shows units running at 100 per cent. 

A great number of ambulances wait outside London Royal Hospital as the number of coronavirus cases surge due the new variant that considerably more transmissible than previous strains in London, December 29

In each region mentioned over 60 per cent of the patients filling ICUs were suffering from covid-19.  

The surge past 100 per cent capacity will see ICUs struggle to cope by redeploying staff from other hospital services. 

Another image taken from the NHS critical care dashboard and leaked to HSJ revealed that the number of covid-19 patients in London’s intensive care units has doubled in the last two weeks from 300 to 636.

Doctors have warned that they will face ‘horrendous’ life or death choices within days over which patients to give priority access to a mechanical ventilator in an attempt to keep them alive.

Dr Claudia Paoloni, an NHS consultant anaesthetist and president of the Hospital Consultants and Specialists Association, told The Guardian: ‘Our NHS just doesn’t have the beds to cope. Some areas will be overwhelmed in days. If ventilation capacity is exceeded, horrendous choices will have to be made over those who live and die.’

She added that other life threatening choices will also have to be made, including which patients to admit to intensive care and how long to continue treatments on patients who appear to be making no progress, if for example a patient with better chances of survival needs the haemodialysis machine they are using.  

Data from the internal NHS critical care capacity dashboard - leaked to HSJ - showed that London had far surpassed its maximum capacity with intensive care units 114 per cent full on Monday night

Data from the internal NHS critical care capacity dashboard – leaked to HSJ – showed that London had far surpassed its maximum capacity with intensive care units 114 per cent full on Monday night 

Another image taken from the NHS critical care dashboard and leaked to HSJ revealed that the number of covid-19 patients in London's intensive care units has doubled in the last two weeks from 300 to 636

Another image taken from the NHS critical care dashboard and leaked to HSJ revealed that the number of covid-19 patients in London’s intensive care units has doubled in the last two weeks from 300 to 636

Dr Samantha Batt-Rawden, a senior registrar working in intensive care in the South East and a president of The Doctor’s Association UK warned: ‘Hospitals are running out of oxygen. One trust has no non-invasive machines left. ICUs are tweeting for volunteers to prone patients. Transfer teams being requested to move patients 65+ miles to nearest hospital with critical care capacity. Please. Stay at home if you can.’ 

She added: ‘We are incredibly thin on the ground. NHS staff have not been prioritised for the vaccine and are going off sick in droves with the new strain.

‘Trusts are so desperate they are tweeting out for medical students to help in ICU. This was confirmed by a consultant on the ground. ‘ 

Intensive Care Society president Stephen Webb told HSJ: ‘We need a message to the public but also to NHS England & Improvement to say that we are reaching a crisis, and we do need the full force of the NHS’s resources pointed towards hospitals to support patients with covid-19.’ 

The news comes as NHS trusts operating in virus hotspots were said to be considering erecting tents, used to treat victims of terror attacks, outside hospitals overrun with coronavirus patients, it was claimed today.  

Official data shows a quarter of England’s hospitals are now treating a dangerous amount of Covid patients. 

A photo of London Royal Hospital this evening, showing a queue of ambulances parked up outside

One user shared a photo with the caption: 'Never seen RLH this crazy. Even every corner of Stepney Way entrance is full of them.'

Photos of London Royal Hospital posted to social media this evening, showing a queue of ambulances parked up outside. One user shared a photo with the caption: ‘Never seen RLH this crazy. Even every corner of Stepney Way entrance is full of them.’

Ambulances line the roads outside the Royal London Hospital, in London this evening as NHS England figures show England's hospitals now have more Covid-19 patients than during April's first-wave peak

Ambulances line the roads outside the Royal London Hospital, in London this evening as NHS England figures show England’s hospitals now have more Covid-19 patients than during April’s first-wave peak

The queues outside Royal London Hospital come a day after data revealed London's intensive care units were running at 114 per cent capacity Monday night

 The queues outside Royal London Hospital come a day after data revealed London’s intensive care units were running at 114 per cent capacity Monday night

A paramedic wearing PPE is seen closing the door of the ambulance as the emergency vehicles queued outside the hospital

A paramedic wearing PPE is seen closing the door of the ambulance as the emergency vehicles queued outside the hospital

In London over 60 per cent of the patients filling ICUs were suffering from covid-19. Ambulances at Royal London Hospital

 In London over 60 per cent of the patients filling ICUs were suffering from covid-19. Ambulances at Royal London Hospital

Ambulances outside Queen's Hospital in Romford, London, tonight, which has moved into the highest tier of coronavirus restrictions as a result of soaring case rates

Ambulances outside Queen’s Hospital in Romford, London, tonight, which has moved into the highest tier of coronavirus restrictions as a result of soaring case rates

Emergency medicine consultant Simon Walsh, who works in north-east London, said some hospitals in Tier Four regions were dealing with queues of ambulances outside A&Es, with a new highly-infectious Covid strain thought to be behind a surge in hospitalisations that has led to England’s hospitals now being busier than they were at the peak of the first wave. 

He said some trusts were now considering setting up triage tents normally used in dealing with a ‘sudden surge of patients from a major incident’ such as a terror attack or industrial disaster and treating patients in the car park to stop wards being completely overrun.

At the Royal London Hospital lines of ambulances were seen queueing outside of the hospital with patients who were waiting to be treated. 

His startling comments come after MailOnline’s analysis of NHS England figures revealed at least a fifth of general beds at 37 trusts were filled by coronavirus patients in the week ending December 22. Top experts have warned of a danger zone when Covid levels breach 20 per cent of overall hospital occupancy, with the extra pressure of the disease inevitably forcing health chiefs to cancel non-Covid services. 

Tents used to treat victims of terror attacks (like these ones) could be set up outside hospitals overrun with coronavirus patients, it was claimed today

Tents used to treat victims of terror attacks (like these ones) could be set up outside hospitals overrun with coronavirus patients, it was claimed today

Doctors working on the frontline in London say they are operating under a 'major incident mode', with reports of patients in hotspots being treated in ambulances because of a lack of space inside hospital. A row of ambulances are parked up at the A&E entrance to Queen's Hospital in Romford today

Doctors working on the frontline in London say they are operating under a ‘major incident mode’, with reports of patients in hotspots being treated in ambulances because of a lack of space inside hospital. A row of ambulances are parked up at the A&E entrance to Queen’s Hospital in Romford today

 

Two trusts were even operating at double that threshold during the most recent week, with coronavirus taking up 45 per cent of beds at the Medway NHS Foundation Trust in Kent and four in 10 beds at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust.

Dr Walsh, who is also deputy chairman of the British Medical Association’s UK consultants committee, said staff are preparing for a ‘worsening, increasing number of admissions’ in the next few weeks as the virus continues to spread.  Britain today recorded 53,135 more coronavirus cases in a record daily high and 414 deaths as the second wave of the disease continues to grow.

An NHS spokesperson, said: ‘The NHS has tried and tested plans in place to manage significant pressure either from high COVID-19 infection rates or non-Covid winter demands and this has always included mutual aid practices whereby hospitals work together to manage admissions.

Dr Samantha Batt-Rawden, a senior registrar working in intensive care in the South East and a president of The Doctor's Association UK warned of pressures facing NHS

Dr Samantha Batt-Rawden, a senior registrar working in intensive care in the South East and a president of The Doctor’s Association UK warned of pressures facing NHS

‘While the NHS is opening more beds in places like London to care for the most unwell patients, it is vital that people continue to follow government guidance and do everything possible to reduce transmission of the virus.’​

Despite the scenes of chaos in the NHS, officials began dismantling Nightingale hospitals today. The Nightingales, built during the first wave at a cost of £220million to the taxpayer, were supposed to be the NHS’ insurance policy in the event hospitals were overrun with patients with the disease.

But only a handful of Covid patients have ever been treated in the hospitals because No10 has struggled to man them with trained staff. 

Dr Walsh said: ‘Today, many trusts in London and the South East are effectively operating in a major incident mode.

‘They’re having crisis meetings, they’re calling on staff to come in to work if they’re able to on their days off.

‘They are dealing with queues of ambulances outside many emergency departments, often with patients sat in the ambulances for many hours until they can be offloaded into the department because there simply isn’t any space to put them in.

‘The physical space to admit patients is running out, staff are exhausted and suffering from the effects of depression and stress and burnout from simply overworking and not being able to get breaks, working in their days off. 

‘So we really do need a coherent plan from the Government to get us through these next few weeks because at the moment what we’re hearing doesn’t fill us with confidence.’  

Dr Walsh added: ‘What I would implore people to do is to listen to the staff, the doctors and nurses who are working in hospitals and emergency departments across the NHS across the UK. Listen to what they’re saying.

‘We are absolutely clear that the NHS is under unprecedented demand. The NHS is resilient and copes with a lot of very difficult times but the sustained nature of this unprecedented pressure on the NHS and the ambulance service as well is really unprecedented.’ 

Empty Nightingales torn down ‘because there’s not enough medics to staff them’

Nightingale hospitals are being quietly taken apart as medics warn there are too few doctors and nurses to keep the make-shift facilities open.

Health bosses have already started stripping London’s of its 4,000 beds, ventilators and even signs directing patients to wards, while those in Birmingham and Sunderland are yet to re-open.

An eye-watering £220million of taxpayers’ money was splashed on seven Nightingales amid panic hospitals could be overwhelmed by an influx of Covid-19 patients during the first wave.

But many stood empty for months after ministers hailed them as a ‘solution’ to the Covid-19 crisis when they were opened to much fan-fare during the first months of the pandemic to buffer overwhelmed hospitals.

Intensive care doctors today accused ministers of ignoring warnings staffing was already ‘wafer thin’ in intensive care before splurging on the extra capacity, with little regard as to how they would be run.

And as beds were wheeled away from the flagship Nightingale in London – opened by Prince Charles – figures revealed that Covid-19 hospitalisations in England have surged past the peak of the first wave amid warnings from health chiefs they are back in the ‘eye’ of the Covid storm.   

He said just because people are not seeing images of patients on trolleys in crowded corridors does not mean hospitals are not overwhelmed, and that infection control measures must be taken into account.

He said: ‘One of the key things people need to understand is that if they’re not seeing queues of patients in corridors, it’s not because we’re not overwhelmed, it’s because we are at capacity whilst maintaining safety for those patients.’

London A&E doctor Sonia Adesara warned that the capital’s hospitals are very close to being overwhelmed if coronavirus infection rates are not brought under control.

She told BBC Breakfast: ‘The hospitals are extremely busy – we have seen a massive rise in people coming in with Covid-19 over the past week and this is on top of an increase in the non-Covid cases we see at this time of year.

‘Just like the first wave we are also suffering from staff shortages, staff are getting Covid-19 again and it is extremely difficult, the hospitals are very full.

‘The situation is untenable and I think we are very close to becoming overwhelmed.’

It comes as official figures showed a quarter of England’s hospitals were treating a ‘dangerous’ number of Covid patients in the run up to Christmas. 

MailOnline’s analysis of NHS England data reveals at least a fifth of general beds at 37 trusts were filled by Covid patients in the week ending December 22. 

Top experts have warned of a danger zone when coronavirus patients breach 20 per cent of hospital occupancy and the disease starts to impact non-Covid services and drive up the risk of outbreaks on wards. 

Two trusts were even operating at double that threshold during the most recent week, with coronavirus taking up 45 per cent of beds at the Medway NHS Foundation Trust in Kent and four in 10 beds at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust. 

A third of beds at four other trusts across Kent and London — East Kent Hospitals University Trust (37 per cent), Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells Trust (35 per cent), Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust (34 per cent) and Dartford and Gravesham Trust (33 per cent) — were being used for patients with the disease. But analysts tracking the outbreak fear 14 trusts will breach the threshold 33 per cent threshold by New Year’s Eve.

Coronavirus patients need to be kept in isolation and treated with stringent infection control measures, which requires more staff and man hours and can put additional strain on hospitals. 

It makes keeping Covid occupancy below 20 per cent essential to avoid disrupting other parts of the NHS.

NHS bosses are under huge pressure to keep routine services open this winter after coming under fire for shutting them down in spring to deal with the pandemic, in a move which led to millions of vital tests, appointments and operations being missed. 

Meanwhile, analysis of NHS figures reveals every region of England recorded a rise in Covid hospital patients in the most recent week amid calls from SAGE for a third national lockdown. 

The biggest surge was in London, where the number of beds occupied by Covid patients each day jumped 44 per cent from 1,552 to 2,237.

NHS England boss Sir Simon Stevens has warned the health service is ‘in the eye of the storm’ ahead of the harsh winter months because there are already more Covid patients in English hospitals than there were during the darkest days in April and the second wave is continuing to spiral.  

A total of 20,426 beds were occupied by patients who had tested positive for coronavirus as of 8am on Monday, up from 18,974 on April 12. More than half of England’s 130 major trusts are already more than 90 per cent full and some are seeing Covid admissions double every week, which leaves hospitals little breathing room with the worst of winter ahead of them.

Categories
Big Story

Discovery about how cancer cells evade immune defences inspires new treatment approach


A recent discovery about the process of evasion by cancer cells has led researchers towards a new approach to treat the disease.

Cancer cells are known for spreading genetic chaos. As cancer cells divide, DNA segments and even whole chromosomes can be duplicated, mutated, or lost altogether. This is called chromosomal instability, and scientists at Memorial Sloan Kettering have learned that it is associated with cancer’s aggressiveness.

The more unstable chromosomes are, the more likely that bits of DNA from these chromosomes will end up where they don’t belong: outside of a cell’s central nucleus and floating in the cytoplasm.

Cells interpret these rogue bits of DNA as evidence of viral invaders, which sets off their internal alarm bells and leads to inflammation. Immune cells travel to the site of the tumour and churn out defensive chemicals. A mystery has been why this immune reaction, triggered by the cancer cells, does not spell their downfall.

“The elephant in the room is that we didn’t really understand how cancer cells were able to survive and thrive in this inflammatory environment,” said Samuel Bakhoum, a physician-scientist at MSK and a member of the Human Oncology and Pathogenesis Program.

According to the new study from Dr. Bakhoum’s lab in the journal Cancer Discovery, the reason has to do, in part, with a molecule sitting on the outside of the cancer cells that destroys the warning signals before they ever reach neighbouring immune cells.

The findings help to explain why some tumours do not respond to immunotherapy, and — equally important — suggest ways to sensitize them to immunotherapy.

Detecting Dangerous DNA

The warning system Dr. Bakhoum studies is called cGAS-STING. When DNA from a virus (or an unstable cancer chromosome) lands in a cell’s cytoplasm, cGAS binds to it, forming a compound molecule called cGAMP, which serves as a warning signal. Inside the cell, this warning signal activates an immune response called STING, which addresses the immediate problem of a potential viral invader.

In addition, much of the cGAMP also travels outside the cell where it serves as a warning signal to neighbouring immune cells. It activates their STING pathway and unleashes an immune attack against the virally infected cell.

Previous work from the Bakhoum lab had shown that cGAS-STING signalling inside of cancer cells causes them to adopt features of immune cells — in particular, the capacity to crawl and migrate — which aids their ability to metastasize. This provided part of the answer to the question of how cancer cells survive inflammation and aid metastasis in the process.

The new research shows how the cancer cells cope with the warning signals that activated cGAS-STING releases into the environment. A scissor-like protein shreds the signals, providing a second way the cells can thwart the threat of immune destruction.

The scissor-like protein that coats cancer cells is called ENPP1. When cGAMP finds its way outside the cell, ENPP1 chops it up and prevents the signal from reaching immune cells. At the same time, this chopping releases an immune-suppressing molecule called adenosine, which also quells inflammation.

Through a battery of experiments conducted in mouse models of breast, lung, and colorectal cancers, Dr. Bakhoum and his colleagues showed that ENPP1 acts like a control switch for immune suppression and metastasis. Turning it on suppresses immune responses and increases metastasis; turning it off enables immune responses and reduces metastasis.

The scientists also looked at ENPP1 in samples of human cancers. ENPP1 expression correlated with both increased metastasis and resistance to immunotherapy.

Empowering Immunotherapy

From a treatment perspective, perhaps the most notable finding of the study is that flipping the ENPP1 switch off could increase the sensitivity of several different cancer types to immunotherapy drugs called checkpoint inhibitors. The researchers showed that this approach was effective in mouse models of cancer.

Several companies — including one that Dr. Bakhoum and colleagues founded — are now developing drugs to inhibit ENPP1 on cancer cells.

Dr. Bakhoum says it’s fortunate that ENPP1 is located on the surface of cancer cells since this makes it an easier target for drugs designed to block it.

It’s also relatively specific. Since most other tissues in a healthy individual are not inflamed, drugs targeting ENPP1 primarily affect cancer.

Finally, targeting ENPP1 undercuts cancer in two separate ways: “You’re simultaneously increasing cGAMP levels outside the cancer cells, which activates STING in neighbouring immune cells, while you’re also preventing the production of the immune-suppressive adenosine. So, you’re hitting two birds with one stone,” Dr. Bakhoum explains.

The pace of the research has been incredibly fast, he says. “One of the things I would be really prou

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.)

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Health

What’s Next in MS Treatment


By Benjamin Segal, MD, as told to Kara Mayer Robinson

We’ve come a long way in treating MS — it’s been one of the biggest success stories in medicine. Over the last 20 years, there has been a revolution in drugs that change the course of the disease, particularly relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS).

Back when I was in training, we had no drugs that altered the prognosis of MS or prevented attacks. The only thing we had were steroids. We gave them to people during serious attacks to speed recovery. But we had nothing to lower someone’s chances of developing the disease. We also couldn’t stop future attacks, put off disability, or make it less serious.

Now there are more than 15 FDA-approved drugs that do just that. They include shots you can give yourself, pills, and intravenous infusions. But they differ in how effective they are and the side effects they have. And we don’t have a way to predict which patient will respond best to which drug.

The goal of MS specialists now is what we call “no disease activity.” This means no relapses, no new lesions, and no ongoing development of disability. For many patients, we can achieve that, especially those with RRMS.

There have also been changes in how we look at secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS). In the last several years, three drugs have been approved for both RRMS and SPMS. Before that, there were no drugs approved for SPMS, except one very potent chemotherapy that we don’t use anymore.

We now have evidence that early treatment, and particularly treatment with certain drugs, may delay the conversion of RRMS to SPMS. In some cases, patients don’t have gradual decline over the course of decades.


What’s on the Horizon

Many new therapies are being studied to advance MS treatment even more. Two important areas of study are how to promote repair in MS and how to treat progressive MS.


Remyelination and Repair

In people with MS, myelin is destroyed, which causes a lot of symptoms. Researchers are looking at different strategies to help the body form new myelin, the protective coating around nerves.


Continued

Some clinical trials target molecules that normally suppress the growth of myelin. Researchers are now looking at a protective or pro-regenerative part of the immune system that we can manipulate to protect damaged neurons and stimulate new fiber growth.

My group at the Ohio State University just published a paper about our discovery of an immune cell that rescues damaged nerve cells from dying. It also stimulates nerve fiber regrowth. It may not only stop further damage of the central nervous system, but it may also reverse damage and restore function.


Treating Secondary Progressive MS

We’ve made progress with SPMS medication, but there’s more to be done.

Data suggests three drugs recently approved for SPMS are somewhat effective in a subset of younger people who still have new inflammatory lesions. But they’re unlikely to help those who are further along with the disease. So the quest is to find treatments for those people.

A few pills being tested in trials show promise. One of them suppresses the immune cells that are normally found in the brain and spinal cord. It stops the body from activating them. In a recent phase II trial, it slowed the progress of disability in people with inactive, progressive MS.


Finding the Right Treatment for Each Person

Right now, we can’t predict which patient will respond best to which drug. But there are a lot of ongoing studies that predict which drug will be the most effective in a given individual. Researchers are also looking for biomarkers to develop blood tests that may tell us if someone’s more likely to respond to one drug versus another.


Vitamin D, Antioxidants, and Gut Microbiome

Some studies show that very low levels of vitamin D raise your chances of developing MS. Now there are studies to see if boosting vitamin D levels with extra supplements may tamp down new attacks or new lesions for people who already have it.

There are also studies that look at the gut microbiome and if you can manage MS better by changing the bacteria in your gut.

It’s not conclusive yet, but researchers are looking at whether certain antioxidants may alter treatment or management of MS. One is called lipoic acid. A few studies suggest it may slow the loss of brain tissue in people with MS. There will likely be future studies that look at lipoic acid and other antioxidants in greater detail.


Continued

New Ways to Manage Symptoms

One of the most common and hard-to-manage symptoms of MS is fatigue. There are studies on pills and cognitive rehabilitation therapy to treat it. There’s also a lot of research into improved prosthetics and robotics to help patients with MS to function better.


Early, Aggressive Treatment

Now that we have highly potent drugs to treat MS, there’s a debate about whether it’s better to start early treatment with aggressive drugs or to start with lower-potency drugs and then step up (escalate) to more potent ones.

A recent study suggests that people treated with higher-potency drugs from the start are less likely to transition to SPMS years down the line. New studies that compare aggressive early treatment to escalation therapy may help us know more.


The Outlook

Right now, many of my patients with MS are living full lives. I’ve seen people who’ve been relapse-free for 2 decades with no new lesions. No one would know that they had MS.

This is a completely different situation from when I was a resident in training. Then, most people we saw went on to need assistance devices and had to stop working.

I think there will be advances in the next 5-10 years that get us even closer to a cure. It’s very difficult to predict. We’re more likely to find treatments that help relapsing-remitting disease and maybe completely stop the progress of the disease. A cure may take a little longer.



Sources

SOURCE:

Benjamin Segal, MD, director, Neuroscience Research Institute, Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.



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Health

Women Less Likely to Get Life-Saving Heart Treatments


MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Women who are resuscitated from cardiac arrest are less likely to receive two common treatments once they arrive at the hospital, and are much more likely to die while hospitalized than men, a new study finds.

The researchers analyzed data gathered on nearly 4,900 resuscitated out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients in the United States and Canada from 2010 to 2015. Of those, just over 37% were women, average age 67, and nearly 63% were men, average age 65.

Rates of survival-to-hospital discharge were 22.5% for women and 36% for men.

Women were much less likely to receive two treatments for cardiac arrest patients after resuscitation: therapeutic hypothermia (cooling the body to a lower-than-normal temperature); and coronary angiography to examine heart arteries and open blood flow.

Rates of hypothermia were 35% for women and 44% for men, while rates of coronary angiography were 14% for women and 30% for men, the investigators found.

Further research is needed to identify the reasons for these differences, according to the authors of the study published online Dec. 15 in the journal Circulation.

The researchers also found that women were: 6% less likely than men to receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) from a bystander; less likely to have a cardiac arrest in public; and less likely to have shockable rhythm.

Having a cardiac arrest in public results in a quicker call to 911 and doubles a patient’s chance of survival to hospital discharge. But after resuscitation, both women and men begin recovery from similar starting points, noted study author Dr. Ahamed Idris. He’s professor of emergency medicine and internal medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

“Our work points to new directions in how we can work to improve survival in women,” Idris said in a medical center news release. “Why are emergency interventions different with women than with men?”

According to study author Dr. Ambarish Pandey, a cardiologist and assistant professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern, “This is one of few studies looking at what happens to people post-resuscitation. Now we need insight into whether these outcomes may be driven by what happens in the hospital. We have a long way to go in providing gender equity in treatment.”

About 300,000 people suffer out-of-hospital cardiac arrests each year in the United States.


More information

The American Heart Association has more on cardiac arrest.


SOURCE: UT Southwestern, news release, Dec. 15, 2020





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Entertainment UK

Tom Parker suffering memory loss after ‘brutal’ treatment for brain tumour

Tom Parker has revealed he is suffering from memory loss after undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy to treat his brain tumour.

The Wanted singer, 32, took to his Instagram account on Saturday to talk about his symptoms, admitting he’s been forgetting things he’s “just done” throughout the day.

Earlier this year he revealed that he has a terminal brain tumour after being diagnosed with stage four glioblastoma.

In his video, Tom told his fans: “As some of you know, I have been through chemo and radio, haven’t I?

“Which was pretty god-damn brutal, but some of the side effects from the chemo and radio are you get bad memory loss.”

Tom Parker has revealed he is suffering from memory loss after undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy to treat his brain tumour

Tom then turned to his wife Kelsey Harwick, asking: “Mine was already bad, wasn’t it?”

Kelsey said: “Horrendous already, so now I’m like… literally, it’s even worse!”

He explained that he struggled to remember daily activities, but would sometimes remember “weird” things, such as a present he bought for his daughter Aurelia.

He revealed he’s forgetting things he’s ‘just done’

Tom went on: “But it’s the weirdest thing because like, I’ll go to her [Kelsey], ‘What did I just do?’ But I can remember stuff like this…”

He then picked up a Heart Of Tafiti necklace, which is worn by the character Moana in the Disney film.

The dad continued: “What have we got? A Heart of Tafiti for Christmas?

Tom and his daughter Aurelia

Tom and his wife Kelsey Harwick

“How do you remember that? Stupid.”

Tom was diagnosed with a brain tumour after suffering a massive seizure.

He’s already had six weeks of chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment.