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Archive for September, 2010

Man contracts anthrax / contact with animal carcass

Anthrax outbreak in cattle on Prairies hits record
DAWN WALTON

CALGARY — An anthrax outbreak has risen to record levels in
Saskatchewan and Manitoba where the number of dead animals — most of
them cattle — has jumped dramatically in the past month and officials
are now frantically vaccinating herds to stop the spread of the
disease.

As of yesterday, 628 animals have died on 129 properties in
Saskatchewan since the beginning of July, when the bacteria was
discovered in a dead bull in Melfort, northeast of Saskatoon, according
to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

In Manitoba, the numbers are also rising, but not at the same pace. By
yesterday, 18 farms had been quarantined and 124 animals have died.

Sandra Stephens, a Saskatoon-based veterinarian with the agency, said
this is the largest anthrax outbreak on the Prairies since Ottawa began
keeping track in the 1950s.

In the previous six years, Saskatchewan had recorded just five cases of
the illness, while Manitoba counted 43 cases during the same period.

Health officials say anthrax is more of an animal health issue than a
concern to people.

Anthrax can lay dormant in the soil for years — even decades — but
outbreaks have popped up from time to time across the Prairies.

Epidemics can come after heavy rain, which brings spores to the
surface, and during periods of drought because the animals are forced
to graze deep into contaminated ground.

This summer has proved to be a perfect storm of "environmental
conditions," according to the agency.

Farmers across Saskatchewan and Manitoba have spent the summer burning
carcasses of infected animals –cattle, horses, bison, sheep, goats and
other animals — in order to decrease the infection rate. If animals
come into contact with the infected carcasses, they could pick up the
infection.

Livestock anthrax is spread neither among live animals nor through the
air.

However, a Melfort-area man contracted a case of skin anthrax in
mid-July. The farmer was treated with antibiotics and made a complete
recovery from the least serious and most common form of the illness.

Saskatchewan’s Chief Medical Health Officer, Ross Findlater, explained
that while anthrax is not transmitted from person to person, skin
anthrax poses a small, theoretical risk of infection from direct
contact with the lesions on another person before an antibiotic regime
has begun.

Farmers are doing what they can to stop the spread. This summer, more
than 250,000 animals have been privately vaccinated and the federal
agency has injected another 18,000 with the vaccine.

About 1,355 animals have been vaccinated by the agency in Manitoba and
while no private figures were available for that province, there is a
similar level of urgency.

"From what I’m hearing, guys are buckling down, getting their herds
vaccinated and trying to ride through it as best they can," Keith
Robertson, executive director of the Manitoba Cattle Producers
Association, told The Canadian Press.

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Low-fat Vegan Diet Rivals Oral Diabetes Medications

cialis .
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Iron overload leads to pathological viscosity

Hemorheological status and redox homeostasis of phlebotomised porphyria
cutanea tarda patients with diabetes mellitus and in moderate alcohol
consumer.
Székely E, Bor M, Tasnádi G, Várnai K, Almási A, Blázovics A
Clin Hemorheol Microcirc. 2006; 35(3): 387-96

Increase in porphyrin concentration is caused by the decreased activity
of uroporphyrinogen decarboxylase in porphyria cutanea tarda (PCT).
Iron overload, alcohol consumption and diabetes mellitus play role in
the development of PCT. We investigated the hemorheological and
redox-parameters from the blood of 34 male PCT patients and 10 male
volunteers. The disfunctions were investigated by pathological amounts
of iron and lipid metabolism. Routine laboratory and hemorheological
parameters, plasma free SH-group concentration, H-donating ability and
reducing power were measured by spectrophotometry. Free radical
activity was determined by chemiluminometry method. The hemorheological
parameters were significantly increased in all three groups of PCT
patients compared to the controls. Negative correlations were observed
between blood viscosity and antioxidant defence of PCT patients and in
PCT patients with alcohol consumption. Plasma and erythrocyte
chemiluminescent intensity was higher in PCT patients than in controls,
which indicated the decrease of antioxidant defence. Hemorheological
parameters were highest in patients with diabetes and in alcohol
consumers. Iron overload increased free radical reactions in PCT
patients, leading to pathological viscosity. Increased free radical
reactions and high blood viscosity increase the risk of cardiovascular
diseases.

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Fatigue in progrssive MS is associated with low DHEA

 Mult Scler. 2006 Aug;12(4):487-94.

Fatigue in progressive multiple sclerosis is associated with low levels of
dehydroepiandrosterone

Tellez N, Comabella M, Julia E, Rio J, Tintore M, Brieva L, Nos C,
Montalban X.
Unitat de Neuroimmunologia Clinica, Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron,
08035 Barcelona, Spain.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Fatigue is one of the most limiting symptoms in
multiple sclerosis (MS) and the mechanisms underlying its origin are poorly
understood. Our aim was to test whether fatigue in MS is associated with
endocrine markers. METHODS: We longitudinally studied 73 progressive MS
patients. Fatigue was assessed at baseline and at 3, 6, 12 and 24 months
using the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS). Given the longitudinal design of
our study, patients were labelled as sustained fatigued when FSS scores
were >5.0 at all time points, and as non-fatigued when FSS scores were < or
= 5.0 at all time points. Serum levels of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA),
its sulphated conjugate (DHEAS) and cortisol were measured at each time
point. RESULTS: Twenty-nine patients scored >5.0 in the FSS at all time
points, and 9 patients (12.3%) scored 5.0 at all time points. Mean baseline
levels of DHEAS and DHEA were lower in MS patients with sustained fatigue
when compared to patients without fatigue (P = 0.01 and P = 0.03
respectively). Analysis of DHEAS and DHEA over time showed significantly
lower hormone levels in patients with fatigue [F(1,31) = 6.14, P=0.019 for
DHEAS; F(1,32) = 6.63, P=0.015 for DHEA]. CONCLUSIONS: Fatigue in
progressive MS could be related to low serum levels of DHEA and DHEAS. Our
results suggest that these hormones should be considered as biological
markers of fatigue in MS patients and that hormone replacement may thus be
tested as an option to treat fatigue in MS patients.

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FYI / A novel method of removal of penile zipper entrapment

I guess these medical guys .. are .. REALLY .. dense ..

http://www.indianpediatrics.net/mar2006/mar-252-254.htm

A quick, simple and non-traumatic approach to the zipper manipulation
is presented in which prepuce is instantly released by lateral
compression of the zip fastener, using a pliers.

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Absorption of Topically Massaged Oil

http://www.indianpediatrics.net/oct2005/oct-998-1005.htm

Indian Pediatrics 2005; 42:998-1005

Transcutaneous Absorption of Topically Massaged Oil in Neonates

Kirti Solanki, Manoj Matnani, +Mrudula Kale, +Kalpana Joshi, Ashish
Bavdekar, Sheila Bhave and Anand Pandit

>From the *Department of Pediatrics, KEM Hospital, Pune 411 011, India

and +School of Health Sciences, University of Pune, Pune 411 007,
India.

Address for Correspondence : Dr. Sheila Bhave, Department of
Pediatrics, KEM Hospital, Pune 411 011, India. E-mail: kem…@vsnl.com

Abstract

Objective: To study the transcutaneous absorption of traditionally
massaged oil in newborns and to specifically compare the effects of (i)
essential fatty acid (EFA) rich – safflower oil and (ii) saturated fat
rich coconut oil, on fatty acid profiles of massaged babies. Design: A
short term randomised controlled study. Setting: Tertiary care NICU of
a large teaching hospital and a research laboratory of a University
complex. Methods: 120 study babies were randomly assigned to three oil
groups (i) safflower oil (n = 40) (ii) coconut oil (n = 40) and (iii)
no oil controls (n = 40). In each group, babies were selected in three
subsets as per their gestational ages viz., (a) <34weeks, (b) 34-37
weeks, (c) > 37 weeks. 5 mL of the designated oil was massaged four
times a day (6hrly) for five days under controlled conditions of
temperature and feeding. Pre and post oil massage samples of blood were
analysed for triglycerides and fatty acid profiles using gas
chromatography. Results: Post oil triglyceride values were
significantly raised in both the oil groups and also in controls.
However, the quantum of rise was significantly higher in oil groups as
compared to controls (p <0.05). Fatty acid profiles (gas
chromatography) showed significant rise in EFAs (linolenic acid and
arachidonic acid) in safflower oil group and saturated fats in coconut
oil group (p <0.05). Changes were more evident in term babies. There
were no side effects associated with the massage. Conclusion: This
study shows that topically applied oil can be absorbed in neonates and
is probably available for nutritional purposes. The fatty acid
constituents of the oil can influence the changes in the fatty acid
profiles of the massaged babies.

Key words: Fatty acid profile, Topical absorption, Traditional oil .

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Dietary iron overload has a high mortality

 S Afr Med J. 1999 Sep;89(9):966-72. Related Articles, Links

Measurements of iron status and survival in African iron overload.

MacPhail AP, Mandishona EM, Bloom PD, Paterson AC, Rouault TA, Gordeuk
VR.

Department of Medicine, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.

INTRODUCTION: Dietary iron overload is common in southern Africa and
there is a misconception that the condition is benign. Early
descriptions of the condition relied on autopsy studies, and the use of
indirect measurements of iron status to diagnose this form of iron
overload has not been clarified. METHODS: The study involved 22 black
subjects found to have iron overload on liver biopsy. Fourteen subjects
presented to hospital with liver disease and were found to have iron
overload on percutaneous liver biopsy. Eight subjects, drawn from a
family study, underwent liver biopsy because of elevated serum ferritin
concentrations suggestive of iron overload. Indirect measurements of
iron status (transferrin saturation, serum ferritin) were performed on
all subjects. Histological iron grade and hepatic iron concentration
were used as direct measures of iron status. RESULTS: There were no
significant differences in either direct or indirect measurements of
iron status between the two groups. In 75% of these subjects the
hepatic iron concentration was greater than 350 micrograms/g dry
weight, an extreme elevation associated with a high risk of fibrosis
and cirrhosis. Serum ferritin was elevated in all subjects and the
transferrin saturation was greater than 60% in 93% of the subjects.
Hepatomegaly was present in 20 of the 22 cases and there was only a
moderate derangement in liver enzymes except for a tenfold increase in
the median gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase concentration. There was a
strong correlation between serum ferritin and hepatic iron
concentrations (r = 0.71, P = 0.006). After a median follow-up of 19
months, 6 (26%) of the subjects had died. The risk of mortality
correlated significantly with both the hepatic iron concentration and
the serum ferritin concentration. CONCLUSIONS: Indirect measurements of
iron status (serum ferritin concentration and transferrin saturation)
are useful in the diagnosis of African dietary iron overload. When
dietary iron overload becomes symptomatic it has a high mortality.
Measures to prevent and treat this condition are needed.

PMID: 10554633 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

——————————————————————————–

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Absorption of non-haem iron can vary from 1 to 100 per cent

http://tinyurl.com/jhf92

Results and findings
There are two forms of iron in our diets: haem iron which is derived
from meat and non-haem iron which is derived from other food sources.
Absorption of non-haem iron, which makes up the majority of the iron in
our diets, can vary from 1 to 100 per cent and is affected by the
presence of other food components consumed at the same time.

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Scyllo-inositol treatment of Alzheimer's disease

Source: Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)     Released: Tue
13-Jun-2006, 09:00 ET

Printer-friendly Version

A Sweet Solution for Alzheimer’s Disease?
Libraries
Medical News   Keywords
ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE ST GEORGE-HYSLOP INOSITOL SCYLLO-INOSITOL AMYLOID
BETA CLINICAL TRIALS NEUROBIOLOGY
Contact Information

Available for logged-in reporters only
Description

Certain variants of a simple sugar ameliorate Alzheimer’s-like disease
in mice, according to a new study by Canadian researchers. Although the
studies are still in the early stages, the findings could lead to new
therapies that prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

Newswise – Certain variants of a simple sugar ameliorate
Alzheimer’s-like disease in mice, according to a new study by Canadian
researchers. Although the new studies are still in the early stages,
the findings could lead to new therapies that prevent or delay the
onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

The new studies show that some types of a sugar called
cyclohexanehexol-also known as inositol-prevented the accumulation
of amyloid ? deposits, a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.
Scyllo-inositol treatment also improved cognitive abilities in the mice
and allowed them to live a normal lifetime. The study appeared in
advance online publication of the journal Nature Medicine on June 11,
2006.

HHMI international research scholar and senior author Peter St
George-Hyslop cautioned that the chemicals tested in these studies are
not the type of inositol sold commercially as a nutritional supplement.
That type-myo-inositol-has been shown previously to be ineffective
at breaking up amyloid aggregates, he said.

In the brain of a person with Alzheimer’s disease, small proteins
called amyloid ? aggregate into plaques, and a protein called tau
clumps into neurofibrillary tangles. The brain becomes inflamed and
neurons atrophy and die. It’s not completely clear what kind of amyloid
? peptide (monomers, oligomeric aggregates, or fibrillar aggregates) is
responsible for the onset of disease, said St George-Hyslop of the
University of Toronto. "Because we were able to show that
scyllo-inositol specifically dispersed the high-molecular-weight
oligomeric aggregates, this study confirms that the initiating event is
the accumulation of oligomeric aggregates of amyloid ? peptide," he
said.

Previous work by JoAnne McLaurin, also of the University of Toronto and
lead author of the Nature Medicine paper, showed that several types of
inositol could stop amyloid proteins from aggregating in test tubes. To
see if these compounds could do the same in living animals, St
George-Hyslop, McLaurin, and colleagues tested them in transgenic mice
with human genes that predispose them to an Alzheimer’s-like disease.

When the researchers treated these mice with scyllo-inositol, all of
the animals’ disease symptoms improved. Cognitive function was
improved, amyloid plaques disappeared, inflammation declined, and the
mice lived longer.

The scientists found that scyllo-inositol conferred these benefits not
only if the mice were treated when they were very young and
disease-free, but also if they were treated after the onset of disease.

As a model system, these mice "are pretty good, but they’re not a
perfect replica of the disease," St George-Hyslop said. The mice do
not develop tau tangles, he explained, but they are prone to amyloid
plaques, brain inflammation, cognitive disturbance, and early death,
just like humans with Alzheimer’s disease.

The researchers found that the scyllo-inositol worked better than the
epi-inositol version. Scyllo-inositol produced more dramatic benefits
overall, while epi-inositol worked only transiently and only when given
before disease symptoms appeared.

Scyllo-inositol "is an exciting experimental therapy, but until it
has actually been tested in humans, it should not be considered the
cure for Alzheimer’s disease," St George-Hyslop said. "There are
many things that are very promising when done in animal models that
turn out to either not work in humans or to have unexpected
toxicity."

A public Canadian company called Transition Therapeutics has regulatory
approval for clinical trials of scyllo-inositol in humans with
Alzheimer’s disease and started them about a week ago. St George-Hyslop
has a small financial interest in the company.

St George-Hyslop and his colleagues are optimistic that scyllo-inositol
will be less toxic to humans than some previous drug candidates for
Alzheimer’s disease. A vaccine designed to destroy amyloid ?, for
example, was first tested successfully in the same type of mice used in
the scyllo-inositol studies, but the vaccine turned out to be toxic in
some humans. It caused an autoimmune reaction in about 10 percent of
patients who were immunized, St George-Hyslop said.

Autoimmune responses shouldn’t be a problem with scyllo-inositol.
"This compound works by a different mechanism and doesn’t involve
immunizing a patient with his own protein, which was probably the
origin of the allergic reaction to the vaccine," the researcher said.

Another complication with previous attempts to treat Alzheimer’s
disease has been that some compounds-such as beta secretase
inhibitors-cannot enter the brain easily, St George-Hyslop explained.
Scyllo-inositol, on the other hand, readily passes through the
blood-brain barrier where it is made available to the central nervous
system.

Even if scyllo-inositol does prove safe and effective in humans,
patients will likely still need drugs designed to attack other aspects
of Alzheimer’s pathology, such as tau neurofibrillary tangles, St
George-Hyslop said.

"Alzheimer’s disease is probably going to be treated by a cocktail of
drugs," he predicted. "Some of them might be this compound, or one
like it, that blocks the toxicity and aggregation of amyloid."

——————————————————————————–

© 2006 Newswise.  All Rights Reserved.

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Iron cofactor for tuberculosis

  history
ID: 24091.0, MPI für Infektionsbiologie / Department of Immunology

Correction of the iron overload defect in beta-2-microglobulin knockout
mice by lactoferrin abolishes their increased susceptibility to
tuberculosis

Authors:  Schaible, Ulrich E.; Collins, Helen L.; Priem, Friedrich;
Kaufmann, Stefan H. E.
Document  type:  Article
Language:  English
External Publication Status:  published
Review Status:  Peer-review
Issue / Number:  11
Free Keywords:  mycobacteria; MHC; innate immunity; macrophages;
endosomes
Title of Journal:  Journal of Experimental Medicine
Comment of the Author/Creator:  Date: 2002, DEC 2
Abstract / Description:  As a resident of early endosomal phagosomes,
Mycobacterium tuberculosis is connected to the iron uptake system of
the host macrophage. beta-2-microglobulin (beta2m) knockout (KO) mice
are more susceptible to tuberculosis than wild-type mice, which is
generally taken as a proof for the role of major histocompatibility
complex class I (MHC-I)-restricted CD8 T cells in protection against M.
tuberculosis. However, beta2m associates with a number of MHC-I-like
proteins, including HFE. This protein regulates transferrin receptor
mediated iron uptake and mutations in its gene cause hereditary iron
overload (hemochromatosis). Accordingly, beta2m-deficient mice suffer
from tissue iron overload. Here, we show that modulating the
extracellular iron pool in beta2m-KO mice by lactoferrin treatment
significantly reduces the burden of M. tuberculosis to numbers
comparable to those observed in MHC class I-KO mice. In parallel, the
generation of nitric oxide impaired in beta2m- KO mice was rescued.
Conversely, iron overload in the immunocompetent host exacerbated
disease. Consistent with this, iron deprivation in infected resting
macrophages was detrimental for intracellular mycobacteria. Our data
establish: (a) defective iron metabolism explains the increased
susceptibility of beta2m-KO mice over MHC-I-KO mice, and (b) iron
overload represents an exacerbating cofactor for tuberculosis.
Volume:  196
Date of Publication (YYYY-MM-DD):  2002-12-02
Start Page:  1507
End Page:  1513
Audience:  Experts Only
Journal Abbrev.:  J. Exp. Med.
Communicated by:  Hilmar Fünning

Affiliations:
MPI für Infektionsbiologie/Department of Immunology

External Affiliations:
Humboldt Univ, Charite, Inst Lab Med & Pathochem, D-10177 Berlin,
Germany

Identifiers:
ISI:000179682000011 [ID No:1]
ISSN:0022-1007 [ID No:2]

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Lactoferrin inhibits urinary tract infection

 Antiviral Res. 2006 Jun 2; [Epub ahead of print] Related Articles,
Links

Lactoferrin inhibits early steps of human BK polyomavirus infection.

Longhi G, Pietropaolo V, Mischitelli M, Longhi C, Conte MP, Marchetti
M, Tinari A, Valenti P, Degener AM, Seganti L, Superti F.

Department of Public Health Sciences, University of "La Sapienza",
Piazzale Aldo Moro, 5, 00185 Rome, Italy.

Lactoferrin, a member of the transferrin family, is a bi-globular iron
binding glycoprotein, found in milk, exocrine secretions of mammals,
and in secondary granules of polymorphonuclear neutrophiles that plays
an important role in the defence against various pathogenic
microorganisms. Previous studies in different virus-cell systems showed
that lactoferrin is a potent inhibitor of different enveloped and naked
virus infection. In this research we studied the effect of lactoferrin
on BK polyomavirus, a human naked double-stranded DNA virus responsible
for productive, persistent, and latent infections of the urinary tract.
Results obtained demonstrate that lactoferrin treatment prevents early
steps of BK virus infection in Vero cells, at the level of the
adsorption phase, probably through the interaction with capsidic
structures, although a lactoferrin-BK virus competition for cell
plasma-membrane receptors cannot be ruled out.

PMID: 16774792 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

——————————————————————————–

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