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Front-of-package symbols and systems: IOM phase 1 report

2010-10-10
Nutrition rating systems and their accompanying symbols are intended to help consumers make healthy choices, but shoppers may be confused by the variety of symbols that have proliferated in recent years. Moreover, different rating systems focus on different nutrients, and questions have been raised about the nutritional criteria underlying these systems. Front-of-Package Nutrition Rating Systems and Symbols: Phase 1 Report presents the preliminary findings of an Institute of Medicine committee's review of these nutrition information tools. and focuses on the criteria behind ...

Bloodstream infection surveillance inconsistent between institutions, U-M study shows

2010-10-10
The study, led by Matthew Niedner, M.D., assistant professor of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases at U-M C.S. Mott Children's Hospital, was conducted by the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions Pediatric Intensive Care Unit Focus Group. It appears in the October issue of the American Journal of Infection Control. "There is an intense amount of attention being placed on measures of quality performance that have significant implications in pay-for-performance, and reimbursement," says Niedner, who led the study. "What you have is a desire ...

Targeted therapy promising for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer

2010-10-10
A new type of breast cancer treatment has shown encouraging activity as a first-line therapy in HER2-positive metastatic disease, researchers reported at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Milan, Italy. Principal investigator Edith Perez, MD, Mayo Clinic in Florida, presented the results of the first ever randomized trial of trastuzumab-DM1 (T-DM1) as a first-line treatment for metastatic breast cancer. T-DM1 is the first of a new type of cancer medicine known as an antibody-drug conjugate. It binds together two existing cancer ...

Neurons cast votes to guide decision-making

2010-10-10
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—We know that casting a ballot in the voting booth involves politics, values and personalities. But before you ever push the button for your candidate, your brain has already carried out an election of its own to make that action possible. New research from Vanderbilt University reveals that our brain accumulates evidence when faced with a choice and triggers an action once that evidence reaches a tipping point. The research was published in the October issue of Psychological Review. "Psychological models of decision-making explain that humans gradually ...

Studying illnesses caused by worms: Scientists are learning how immune cells communicate

2010-10-10
Saranac Lake, N.Y. – A billion people living in underdeveloped areas around the world are infected with parasitic helminthes, worms that survive by residing in and feeding on their hosts. These infestations can cause chronic intestinal (and occasionally systemic) illnesses leading to long-term disability. Irah King and Markus Mohrs, biomedical researchers at the Trudeau Institute, are investigating illnesses caused by these gut-dwelling worms in an effort to decipher how immune cells send and receive signals that determine the specific immune response to mount. In a study ...

Plants kick-start evolutionary drama of Earth's oxygenation

Plants kick-start evolutionary drama of Earths oxygenation
2010-10-10
TEMPE, Az. - An international team of scientists, exploiting pioneering techniques at Arizona State University, has taken a significant step toward unlocking the secrets of oxygenation of the Earth's oceans and atmosphere. Evolution of the Earth's multitude of organisms is intimately linked to the rise of oxygen in the oceans and atmosphere. The new research indicates that the appearance of large predatory fish as well as vascular plants approximately 400 million years ago coincided with an increase in oxygen, to levels comparable to those we experience today. If so, ...

Taking a fresh look

2010-10-10
Educational policy is controversial: positions on achievement gaps, troubled schools and class size are emotionally charged, and research studies often come to very different conclusions. But what if there was a new way of looking at the problem -- a way that treats education as a complex system (taking into account all interactions) and uses computer modeling and network analysis to provide a comprehensive look at the outcomes of policy choices? Researchers at Northwestern University's McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science and School of Education and ...

Texas Tech researcher: Bee colony collapse associated with viral, fungal infection

2010-10-10
The sudden death of bee colonies since late 2006 across North America has stumped scientists. But today, researchers may have a greater understanding of the mysterious colony collapse disorder, said a Texas Tech University biologist. Shan Bilimoria, a professor and molecular virologist, said the bees may be taking a one-two punch from both an insect virus and a fungus, which may be causing bees to die off by the billions. Bilimoria is part of a team of researchers searching for the cause of the collapse. Led by research professor Jerry Bromenshenk from the University ...

Improving sonography requires improving sonography school admissions

Improving sonography requires improving sonography school admissions
2010-10-10
COLUMBIA, Mo. – Diagnostic ultrasounds are the most widely used medical tests in the world. Though the technology is more than 50 years old, scientists continue to discover new uses for it, ranging from more targeted cancer treatments to liposuction. As the technology becomes more complex, a sonographer's skill level is even more important. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri may have found one of the keys to becoming a successful sonographer: spatial ability. Doug Clem, clinical assistant professor of MU's diagnostic ultrasound program in the MU School ...

Webb Telescope sunshield passes launch depressurization tests to verify flight design

Webb Telescope sunshield passes launch depressurization tests to verify flight design
2010-10-10
NASA's James Webb Space Telescope continues to make significant progress, successfully completing a series of sunshield vent tests that validate the telescope's sunshield design. "While adequate venting is a design consideration for all spaceflight hardware, this was a particularly unique challenge for the sunshield given the large volume of trapped air in the membrane system at launch," said Keith Parrish, Webb telescope sunshield manager at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. "From the beginning of its development venting features have been a critical ...

Women's race and class impact contraception recommendations, UCSF study shows

2010-10-10
A woman's race/ethnicity and socioeconomic status impact whether health care providers recommend one of the most highly effective forms of contraception, a UCSF study confirms. The results also indicate that the interaction of both factors plays a role in clinicians' decisions. Recommendations by health care providers previously have been found to vary by patients' race and socioeconomic status, contributing to health disparities, according to the researchers. The team investigated the effect of these factors on recommendations for contraception. Study results appear ...

Alienated youths are more likely to lash out

2010-10-10
When people are rejected by peers, they often lash out. In children, that aggression occasionally takes horrifying directions, leading to school shootings or other deadly acts. Researchers in the Netherlands found that some children are more likely than others to lash out in response to acute peer rejection: children who already feel like outcasts. "It was inspired by the fact that we had these school shootings and wondered what the most important feature of these kids could be," says Albert Reijntjes of Utrecht University, who cowrote the study with five other psychological ...

Researchers discover a new class of highly electronegative chemical species

2010-10-10
RICHMOND, Va. (Oct. 8, 2010) – An international team of researchers has discovered a new class of highly electronegative chemical species called hyperhalogens, which use superhalogens as building blocks around a metal atom. The new chemical species may have application in many industries. Researchers from Virginia Commonwealth University, McNeese State University in Lake Charles, La., and the University of Konstanz in Germany report their discovery in the Oct. 6 international chemistry journal Angewandte Chemie International Edition. The journal designated the paper as ...

NASA sees Otto become eighth hurricane of the Atlantic season

NASA sees Otto become eighth hurricane of the Atlantic season
2010-10-10
At 11 a.m. EDT on Oct. 8, Otto strengthened into a hurricane, becoming the eighth hurricane of the Atlantic Ocean season. NASA's Aqua satellite and the NOAA GOES-13 satellite captured images of Otto as he intensified. Otto had maximum sustained winds near 75 mph, and the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla. noted that some strengthening is possible before it weakens on Saturday, Oct. 9. Otto was located about 445 miles south of Bermuda near 25.9 North and 64.0 West. It was moving east-northeast near 17 mph, and had a minimum central pressure of 979 millibars. On ...

NASA's Mobile Mars Laboratory almost ready for flight

NASAs Mobile Mars Laboratory almost ready for flight
2010-10-10
The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite has completed assembly at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., and is nearly ready for a December delivery to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, Calif., where it will be joined to the Curiosity rover. SAM and Curiosity are set to fly on the on the upcoming Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover mission scheduled for launch in the fall of 2011. SAM will become an automated, mobile laboratory as it is carried across Mars by the rover when the mission arrives at the Red Planet in 2012. Together ...

UT Southwestern researchers create experimental vaccine against Alzheimer's

2010-10-10
DALLAS – Oct. 12, 2010 – Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have created an experimental vaccine against beta-amyloid, the small protein that forms plaques in the brain and is believed to contribute to the development of Alzheimer's disease. Compared with similar so-called DNA vaccines that the UT Southwestern researchers tested in an animal study, the new experimental vaccine stimulated more than 10 times as many antibodies that bind to and eliminate beta-amyloid. The results appeared in the journal Vaccine. Future studies will focus on determining the ...

Clue to unusual drug-resistant breast cancers found

2010-10-10
Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine have found how gene expression that may contribute to drug resistance is ramped up in unusual types of breast tumors. Their findings may offer new therapy targets. The study is published in the Oct. 8 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry, where it is designated a paper of the week. Approximately 70 percent of breast cancers express the estrogen receptor. These "ER-positive" tumors usually respond to hormone-related therapies, such as tamoxifen or aromatase inhibitors. But not always. "We ...

Progress toward first commercial repellent for East Coast's stinker

2010-10-10
WASHINGTON, Oct. 9, 2010 — Help may be on the way for millions of people on the East Coast bugged out about the invasion of stink bugs. Scientists have reported a key advance in efforts to develop the first commercial repellent for stinkbugs, which are emerging as a major nuisance to homeowners and a devastating pest to some farm crops. They identified a natural substance in a fungus that infects a common weed and found that it shows potential as the first stinkbug repellent. Their study appeared in ACS' bi-weekly Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. Hiromitsu ...

Clinical trials demonstrate effective weight loss strategies for obese and overweight adults

2010-10-10
CHICAGO -- Lifestyle interventions, including physical activity and structured weight loss programs, can result in significant weight loss for overweight, obese and severely obese adults, according to two reports that were posted online today by JAMA. The studies and accompanying editorials were made available early online to coincide with the presentation of these papers at the 28th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Obesity Society. The articles will appear in the October 27 print issue of JAMA. According to background information in the papers, obesity is among the ...

Prepared meals and incentivized weight-loss program for obese and overweight women

2010-10-10
In another article being released early online, Cheryl L. Rock, Ph.D., R.D., from Moores UCSD Cancer Center, La Jolla, Calif., and colleagues, conducted a randomized controlled trial of weight loss and weight maintenance in 442 overweight or obese women (BMI, 25 – 40), ages 18 to 69, over a two year period with follow-up between November 2007 and April 2010. The women were randomized into three intervention groups: in-person, center-based (167 women) or telephone based (164 women) weekly one-to-one weight loss counseling, including free-of-charge prepackaged prepared ...

New targeted therapy adds benefit to erlotinib in some patients with advanced lung cancer

2010-10-10
A subset of lung cancer patients seem to live longer and experience delays in disease progression when a new drug that targets a cancer-associated molecule called MET is added to treatment with erlotinib, the results of a double-blind Phase-II trial show. Dr David Spigel, Director of lung cancer research for the Sarah Cannon Research Institute in Nashville, Tennessee reported the trial findings at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Milan, Italy. The study included 128 patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer who were ...

Surgical technique relieves painful spine fractures in patients with metastatic cancer

2010-10-10
A surgical technique appears to offer quick and effective relief for debilitating spinal fractures often suffered by patients with metastatic cancer, researchers reported at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Milan. Many patients with multiple myeloma, or those whose cancer has spread beyond the initial tumor site, suffer compression fractures in their spine. This is partly because the spine is one of the most common sites for metastatic spread of the disease, making the vertebrae brittle and at risk for fractures. Widely-used cancer ...

Erlotinib improves progression-free survival as first-line therapy in advanced lung cancer

2010-10-10
For patients with advanced lung cancer whose tumors carry EGFR activating mutations, first-line treatment with erlotinib nearly tripled progression-free survival compared to a standard chemotherapy combination, show results from the first prospective Phase-III study to report findings in this setting. The new results from the OPTIMAL trial were reported at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Milan, Italy. "Erlotinib is very effective and well tolerated in advanced NSCLC patients who harbor EGFR activating mutations. It is 2 to 3 ...

Identifying subsets of patients who will respond to subsequent lines of chemotherapy

2010-10-10
In a study presented at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), Dr Giovanni Bernardo from Fondazione Maugeri in Pavia, Italy, presented results that suggested it may be possible to identify subsets of metastatic breast cancer patients who are likely to respond to subsequent lines of chemotherapy. Dr Bernardo's group analysed data from 980 women treated with chemotherapy for metastatic breast cancer in their centre between 1992 and 2006. They found that the median overall survival grew progressively smaller for each successive chemotherapy ...

Study reveals cancer-linked epigenetic effects of smoking

2010-10-10
For the first time, UK scientists have reported direct evidence that taking up smoking results in epigenetic changes associated with the development of cancer. The results were reported at the 35th Congress of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Milan, Italy. The link between smoking and cancer has been established for decades, explained Dr Yuk Ting Ma from the Cancer Research UK Institute of Cancer Studies, Birmingham, who presented the results. Smoking is the single biggest cause of cancer in the world, and years of research have confirmed that carcinogenic ...
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