Will You Get the Flu? Biomarker Predicts Vulnerability

By DPC – Re-Blogged From Newsmax Health

Doctors can’t yet predict if someone exposed to the flu will become sick. But such predictions may be getting closer to reality, new research hints.

Researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine say they’ve identified a “biomarker” that indicates a person’s susceptibility to flu viruses.

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The Human Costs of Epidemics are Going Down But the Economic Costs are Going Up

By Vanessa Candeias – Re-Blogged From World Economic Forum

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the deadliest epidemic in history – the 1918 Spanish Influenza outbreak, which killed around 50 million people.

More recently, several outbreaks with equally familiar names have made headlines: SARS, swine flu, MERS, Ebola, Zika, yellow fever, Lassa fever, cholera, drug resistant infections… the list could go on. In fact, every month the World Health Organization receives 5,000 early-warning disease signals from across the globe, around 300 of which need further investigation and of which 30 warrant more in-depth field studies to investigate their potential for causing epidemics.

A health worker stands by ready to ask incoming passengers to remove any head gears before temperature screenings at the International Airport in Hong Kong April 27, 2009. Asia, a continent that has battled deadly viruses such as the H5N1 bird flu and SARS in recent years, began taking steps over the weekend to ward off a new flu virus.   REUTERS/Vincent Yu/Pool   (CHINA POLITICS HEALTH IMAGES OF THE DAY) - GM1E54R15DW01

‘Major, Major Game-Changer’: Ebola Spreads to Big Congo City

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Newsmax Health

Congo’s Ebola outbreak has spread to a crossroads city of more than 1 million people in a troubling turn that marks the first time the vast, impoverished country has encountered the lethal virus in an urban area.

“This is a major, major game-changer in the outbreak,” Dr. Peter Salama, the World Health Organization’s deputy director-general of emergency preparedness and response, warned on Thursday.

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FDA OKs 1st Migraine Drug

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Newsmax Health

The FDA has approved the first drug designed to prevent chronic migraines. Aimovig is injected monthly just under the skin using a pen-like device and will cost $6,900 per year without insurance.

The Food and Drug Administration’s action clears the monthly shot for sale. Aimovig is the first in a new class of long-acting drugs for preventing migraines. Three other shots are expected to win approval by next year, and several pills for preventing migraines are being tested.

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Engineered Antibodies Block HIV Infection in Primates for 6 Months

Immune Therapy Scores Big Win Against Lung Cancer in Study

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

For the first time, a treatment that boosts the immune system greatly improved survival in people newly diagnosed with the most common form of lung cancer. It’s the biggest win so far for immunotherapy, which has had much of its success until now in less common cancers.

In the study, Merck’s Keytruda, given with standard chemotherapy, cut in half the risk of dying or having the cancer worsen, compared to chemo alone after nearly one year. The results are expected to quickly set a new standard of care for about 70,000 patients each year in the United States whose lung cancer has already spread by the time it’s found.

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Cancer Vaccine to Be Tested in Lymphoma Patients

By Nick Tate – Re-Blogged From Newsmax Health

Stanford Univesity researchers are recruiting lymphoma patients to test a new cancer vaccine that had a 97 percent success rate in “curing” mice with cancer.

The clinical trial will involve about 15 patients with low-grade lymphoma and begin by the end of the year, according to a Stanford news release.

 Lead research Dr. Ronald Levy, director of the lymphoma program at the Stanford Cancer Institute in California, said he believes the treatment could be useful for many tumor types.

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