Saturday, January 16, 2021

Category: HEALTH

HEALTH
Broader Role for PARP Inhibitors in Breast Cancer?

Homologous recombination deficiency (HRD) predicted most responses to the PARP inhibitor olaparib (Lynparza) in patients with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), including patients without germline (g)BRCA or PALB2 mutations, a small clinical trial showed.

Overall, 18 of 32 TNBCs responded to primary treatment with olaparib, and HRD was present in 16 of 18 responding tumors. A majority of responses occurred in tumors without germline mutations, in contrast to conventional wisdom about PARP inhibitors’ activity in breast cancer.

“Olaparib monotherapy yielded a high response rate when administered to treatment-naïve, large TNBC, with germline or somatic HR deficiency,” reported Hans Petter Eikesdal, MD, of the University of Bergen in Norway, and colleagues in the Annals of Oncology. “While the benefit of PARP inhibitor monotherapy in TNBC needs confirmation, it presents a potential sequential approach for TNBC downstaging prior to chemotherapy.”

PARP inhibitors’ have established antitumor activity in breast cancers

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HEALTH
Longer Diabetes Duration Means More Complications Later On

Younger age at diabetes diagnosis portended worse outcomes later in life, a meta-analysis found.

In data covering some 1.3 million individuals, each additional year of age at initial diagnosis with type 2 diabetes was tied to 4% lower risk for all-cause mortality (odds ratio 0.96, 95% CI 0.94-0.99, P<0.001) after adjustment for current age, reported Natalie Nanayakkara, MBBS, of Monash University in Australia, and colleagues in Diabetologia.

The benefits of staving off diabetes didn’t end there, as each year later a person developed diabetes was also tied to a 3% (OR 0.97, 95% CI 0.96-0.98, P<0.001) and 5% (OR 0.95, 95% CI 0.94-0.96, P<0.001) lowered risk for macrovascular disease and microvascular disease, respectively.

“Early and sustained interventions to improve blood glucose levels and cardiovascular risk profiles in those with established type 2 diabetes and interventions to delay the onset of type 2 diabetes in those at

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HEALTH
Asciminib, a New Drug for Treating R/R CML

The investigational drug asciminib (being developed by Novartis) may become the new kid on the block for the treatment of chronic phase chronic myeloid leukemia (CMP-CP) for patients who have relapsed on or are refractory to at least two prior tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs).

New results from the ASCEMBL study (NCT03106779) show that patients who received asciminib, which works differently from currently approved therapies for CML-CP, achieved better responses compared to bosutinib (Bosulif) as third-line therapy.

“The ASCEMBL study opens a new chapter for CML, proving comparatively superior efficacy and excellent safety for a new class of ABL inhibitors,” co-investigator Michael J. Mauro, MD, from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York City, told Medscape Medical News.

The trial was presented as a late-breaking abstract at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) 2020 virtual meeting.

Asciminib is a first-of-a-kind STAMP (Specifically Targeting the ABL Myristoyl Pocket) inhibitor

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HEALTH
New Orleans health care workers hopeful as they line up for the coronavirus vaccine | Coronavirus

Just an hour after the first coronavirus vaccines arrived at Ochsner Health’s Jefferson Highway main campus, they sat in glass vials in front of pharmacist Mona Moghareh.

Cameras livestreamed the moment. A small crowd and the Gov. John Bel Edwards looked on. 

“It’s an honor,” said Moghareh, one of Ochsner’s inpatient pharmacists who works on the hospital floor. She’d been waiting for this day for a long time. 

“Is that considered a small needle for a vaccine?” Edwards asked.



NO.firstvax.121520_27.JPG

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, right, talks with Debbie Ford, MSN, RN, center, chief nursing officer with Ochsner Medical Center, as she gets ready to receive the first coronavirus vaccine from Dr. Mona Moghareh, left, on Monday, December 14, 2020. (Photo by Chris Granger | The Times-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate)




Moghareh, who has been mixing medications for coronavirus patients since March and will now be

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HEALTH
U.K. Eases Restrictions on Blood Donation by Gay and Bisexual Men

The British government said it would ease restrictions on blood donations by gay and bisexual men beginning next summer in a shift lauded by LGBT activists as a significant step forward in promoting equality and reducing the stigma that some men say they still face because of their sexuality.

Under the new guidelines, people with a single sexual partner who have been with that partner for more than three months can donate blood, regardless of their gender, their partner’s gender or their sexual orientation. The current rules call for a three-month wait after a man has had sex with another man.

“This is a positive step and recognizes individuals for the actions they take, rather than their sexual preference,” said U.K. Health Secretary

Matt Hancock.

He said the change would safely expand the pool of available blood donors.


‘This is a positive step and recognizes individuals for the actions

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HEALTH
Huntsville Hospital: COVID vaccinations start Wednesday

COVID-19 vaccinations for frontline health care employees in north Alabama will start Wednesday morning and also be made available to physicians’ offices and emergency medical responders, a Huntsville Hospital spokesman said Monday.

The hospital is expecting 6,825 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to arrive Tuesday, hospital Senior Vice President Tracy Doughty said.

Another dose will be required in 21 days for full inoculation. The first-round doses are coming from the state, which is also holding the follow-up doses until they are needed. According to other AL.com reporting, half of the first doses will be allocated to hospital health care workers, 15 percent for EMS workers, 15 percent for physician offices, and 20 percent for other hospital staff.

Doughty briefed reporters late Monday on Huntsville’s plan. As a example of early vaccinations, Doughty cited the staff at the hospital’s Fever and Flu Clinic, which has been testing people for the virus

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HEALTH
‘Healing is coming’: First Americans vaccinated as U.S. death toll passes 300,000

NEW YORK (Reuters) -A New York City intensive care unit nurse on Monday became the first person in the United States to receive a coronavirus vaccine, calling it a sign that “healing is coming,” as the nation’s COVID-19 death toll crossed a staggering 300,000 lives lost.

Sandra Lindsay, who has treated some of the sickest COVID-19 patients for months, was inoculated at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in the New York City borough of Queens, an early epicenter of the country’s coronavirus outbreak, receiving applause on a livestream with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

“It didn’t feel any different from taking any other vaccine,” Lindsay said. “I feel hopeful today, relieved. I feel like healing is coming. I hope this marks the beginning of the end of a very painful time in our history.

“I want to instill public confidence that the vaccine is

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HEALTH
Five Mobile County hospitals to get Pfizer vaccine this week

Five hospitals in Mobile County will be part of the Alabama launch of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, according to an official with the Mobile County Health Department.

The hospitals will give the initial doses to frontline healthcare workers

Dr. Scott Chavers, an epidemiologist with the Mobile County Health Department, told AL.com on Friday that Mobile Infirmary, University Hospital, USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital, Providence Hospital and Springhill Medical Center are on the state’s initial distribution lists.

He said the first phase of distribution, called “Phase 1a,” will include 5,800 initial vaccine doses that will be distributed to the Mobile County area and will be specifically given to healthcare workers.

The Alabama Department of Public Health, last week, confirmed the state is expected to receive about 40,000 initial doses overall.

“They were chosen because of their capability of storing the vaccine at the ultralow temperatures required for the Pfizer vaccine at

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HEALTH
Italian boy may have had the coronavirus in December last year, three months before the country’s first official case

Researchers around the world are looking at blood samples taken in late 2019 to see if there are any early signs of the coronavirus. The latest example is of researchers looking at old blood samples taken from children in Milan. One boy’s blood sample tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, and researchers say that it is similar to the strain that was found in Wuhan, according to the study published in Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The authors report that the sample was taken in early Dec. 2019, about three months earlier than the first official reported coronavirus case in Italy. The segment of viral genetic material was identified as matching the Wuhan and other strains of the coronavirus, although they could not identify it further as to which exact strain it was.

The child was not asymptomatic, which is why they took blood samples from him on

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HEALTH
Why I Signed Up for the AstraZeneca Vaccine Trial

I was standing outside the fence at my son’s one and only swimming meet—watching through the wrought-iron bars as the swimmers raced two at a time with an open lane between them—when I heard that University of Wisconsin Hospital was seeking volunteers to test the AstraZeneca Vaccine (AZD1222). It was a few days before school started, which would be online, and after months of social distancing, no-contact delivery, countless virtual meetings, and swabs probing into the gray matter of my lower brain to test for COVID, I was starting to feel a little desperate for anything that might facilitate a return to normal life. Even if it meant donating my body to science. I signed up as soon as I got home.

Similar to the other major vaccines in the news—most notably the Pfizer and Moderna medications—AZD1222 uses a double-injection, or two-shot, protocol. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines differ from

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