Tag Archives: Pharmacology

Dose-response relationship between antimicrobial drugs and livestock-associated MRSA in pig farming

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The farming community can be a vehicle for introduction of livestock-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (LA-MRSA) in hospitals. During 2011–2013, an 18-month longitudinal study aimed at reducing the prevalence of LA-MRSA was conducted on 36 pig farms in the Netherlands. Evaluations every 6 months showed a slight decrease in MRSA prevalence in animals and a stable […]

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Antibiotic alternatives rev up bacterial arms race

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More than eight decades have passed since Alexander Fleming’s discovery of a fungus that produced penicillin — a breakthrough that ultimately spawned today’s multibillion-dollar antibiotics industry. Researchers are now looking to nature with renewed vigour for other ways of fighting infection. Few new antibiotics are in development, and overuse of existing ones has created resistant […]

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Experimental Ebola treatment boosts survival in mice

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The number of new Ebola cases is tapering off, but the search for new treatments continues. Now, one research team has found potential drug candidates that successfully treated up to 90 percent of mice exposed to the Ebola virus. The number of new Ebola cases is tapering off, but the search for new treatments continues. […]

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Potential new painkiller provides longer lasting effects

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Medications have long been used to treat pain caused by injury or chronic conditions. Unfortunately, most are short-term fixes or cause side effects that limit their use. Researchers at the University of Missouri have discovered a new compound that offers longer lasting painkilling effects, and shows promise as an alternative to current anesthetics. “Because of […]

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Strong statin-diabetes link seen in large study

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In a database study of nearly 26,000 beneficiaries of Tricare, the military health system, those taking statin drugs to control their cholesterol were 87 percent more likely to develop diabetes. The study, reported online April 28, 2015, in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, confirms past findings on the link between the widely prescribed drugs […]

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The emergency department (ED) opioid prescribing

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As emergency physicians (EPs) routinely care for patients with adverse effects from opioids, including overdoses and those battling addiction, as well as treating patients that benefit from opioid use. Increasingly, EPs are required to distinguish between patients who are suffering from a condition that warrants opioids to relieve pain, and those who may be attempting […]

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‘Performance enhancing’ drugs decrease performance

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Doping is damaging the image of sport without benefiting athletes’ results, according to new research. Researchers collated sporting records (including Olympic and world records) of male and female athletes across 26 sports, between 1886 and 2012. Comparisons were made between pre-1932 records (when steroids became available) and post, and it was found that the times, […]

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Advanced viral gene therapy eradicates prostate cancer in preclinical experiments

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Even with the best available treatments, the median survival of patients with metastatic, hormone-refractory prostate cancer is only two to three years. Driven by the need for more effective therapies for these patients, researchers have developed a unique approach that uses microscopic gas bubbles to deliver directly to the cancer a viral gene therapy in […]

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Fish and other animals produce their own sunscreen

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Scientists from Oregon State University have discovered that fish can produce their own sunscreen. They have copied the method used by fish for potential use in humans. In the study published in the journal eLife, scientists found that zebrafish are able to produce a chemical called gadusol that protects against UV radiation. They successfully reproduced […]

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Consumer DNA firms get serious about drug development

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Companies that offer genetic testing directly to consumers are renewing their ambitions. Recent moves by US regulators have given the firms fresh hope that the large genetic data sets they amass will have commercial as well as scientific value, spawning diagnostic tests or drugs. The moment seems ripe. In February, the US Food and Drug […]

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Finding new life for first-line antibiotics

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Duke University researchers have identified a single, simple metric to guide antibiotic dosing that could bring an entire arsenal of first-line antibiotics back into the fight against drug-resistant pathogens. A computer simulation created by Hannah Meredith, a biomedical engineering graduate fellow at Duke, revealed that a regimen based on a pathogen’s recovery time could eliminate […]

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New treatment for common digestive condition Barrett’s esophagus

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The esophagus or food pipe (gullet) is part of the digestive system. It is the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach. Barrett’s esophagus (also known as BE) and low-grade dysplasia affects approximately 2% of the adult population, particularly those with heartburn, as acid reflux from the stomach can, over time, damage […]

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Drug restores brain function and memory in early Alzheimer’s disease

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A novel therapeutic approach for an existing drug reverses a condition in elderly patients who are at high risk for dementia due to Alzheimer’s disease, researchers at Johns Hopkins University found. The drug, commonly used to treat epilepsy, calms hyperactivity in the brain of patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), a clinically recognized condition […]

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Administering sedatives for patients receiving general anesthesia questioned

Patients scheduled for surgery may experience considerable stress and anxiety. Benzodiazepine (a class of sedatives) premedication is frequently used to reduce anxiety but also causes amnesia, drowsiness, and cognitive impairment. Treating anxiety is not necessarily associated with a better perioperative (before and after surgery) experience for the patient. More needs to be known about the […]

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Type 2 diabetes, fatty liver disease reversed in rats

Existing therapies for type 2 diabetes, and the closely associated conditions of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), have had limited success at treating the root causes of these diseases. Building on earlier research, the Yale team — led by Gerald I. Shulman, M.D., the George R. Cowgill Professor of Physiological Chemistry, […]

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New nanogel for drug delivery: Self-healing gel can be injected into the body and act as a long-term drug depot

Scientists are interested in using gels to deliver drugs because they can be molded into specific shapes and designed to release their payload over a specified time period. However, current versions aren’t always practical because they must be implanted surgically. To help overcome that obstacle, MIT chemical engineers have designed a new type of self-healing […]

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Improving antibiotics to treat staph infections

New information about how antibiotics like azithromycin stop staph infections has been uncovered, including why staph sometimes becomes resistant to drugs. In research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Saint Louis University Mee-Ngan F. Yap, Ph.D., discovered new information about how antibiotics like azithromycin […]

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Promising antibiotic discovered in microbial ‘dark matter’

Potential drug kills pathogens such as MRSA — and was discovered by mining ‘unculturable’ bacteria. An antibiotic with the ability to vanquish drug-resistant pathogens has been discovered — through a soil bacterium found just beneath the surface of a grassy field in Maine. Although the new antibiotic has yet to be tested in people, there […]

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First biosimilar drug set to enter US market

The complex protein structures of biologics such as filgrastim, shown here, make it difficult to produce generic versions of the drugs. After years of debate, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is poised to allow the sale of biosimilars, cheaper versions of complex and expensive biological drugs used to treat conditions such as cancer […]

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Barrier-breaking drug may lead to spinal cord injury treatments

Injections of a new drug may partially relieve paralyzing spinal cord injuries, based on indications from a study in rats, which was partly funded by the National Institutes of Health. The results demonstrate how fundamental laboratory research may lead to new therapies. “We’re very excited at the possibility that millions of people could, one day, […]

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* New natural supplement relieves canine arthritis

Arthritis pain in dogs can be relieved, with no side effects, by a new product based on medicinal plants and dietary supplements that was developed at the University of Montreal’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. “While acupuncture and electrical stimulation are two approaches that have been shown to have positive effects on dogs, until now a […]

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* Pet dogs set to test anti-ageing drug

Yeast, worms and mice: all have lived longer when treated with various chemical compounds in laboratory tests. But many promising leads have failed when tried in humans. This week, researchers are proposing a different approach to animal testing of life-extending drugs: trials in pet dogs. Their target is rapamycin, which is used clinically as part […]

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Improved mouse model will accelerate research on potential Ebola vaccines, treatments

Researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and colleagues have developed the first genetic strain of mice that can be infected with Ebola and display symptoms similar to those that humans experience. This work, published in the current issue of Science, will significantly improve basic research on Ebola treatments and vaccines, which […]

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Possible alternative to antibiotics

Scientists from the University of Bern have developed a novel substance for the treatment of severe bacterial infections without antibiotics, which would prevent the development of antibiotic resistance. Ever since the development of penicillin almost 90 years ago, antibiotics have remained the gold standard in the treatment of bacterial infections. However, the WHO has repeatedly […]

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* Alzheimer’s drug sneaks through blood–brain barrier

A double-sided antibody targets enzyme to reduce levels of harmful amyloid-β protein in monkeys. The anti-Alzheimer’s antibody has two binding sites — one for crossing the blood-brain barrier, the other for disabling an enzyme that produces the plaques associated with the disease. Delivering medications to the brain could become easier, thanks to molecules that can […]

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Scientific breakthrough will help design antibiotics of the future

Researchers at the University of Bristol focused on the role of enzymes in the bacteria, which split the structure of the antibiotic and stop it working, making the bacteria resistant. The new findings, published in Chemical Communications, show that it is possible to test how enzymes react to certain antibiotics. It is hoped this insight […]

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Resveratrol boosts spinal bone density in men with metabolic syndrome

Resveratrol, a natural compound found in red wine and grapes, increased spinal bone density in men with metabolic syndrome and could hold promise as a treatment for osteoporosis, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. Resveratrol is one of a group of plant compounds known as […]

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New drug-delivery capsule may replace injections

Given a choice, most patients would prefer to take a drug orally instead of getting an injection. Unfortunately, many drugs, especially those made from large proteins, cannot be given as a pill because they get broken down in the stomach before they can be absorbed. To help overcome that obstacle, researchers at MIT and Massachusetts […]

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Universal Ebola drug target identified by researchers

A new tool can be used as a drug target in the discovery of anti-Ebola agents that are effective against all known strains and likely future strains, researchers report. Current experimental drugs generally target only one of Ebola’s five species. “The current growing epidemic demonstrates the need for effective broad-range Ebola virus therapies,” says the […]

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US vows to combat antibiotic resistance

A push by the US government to stop the rise of antibiotic resistance has drawn broad praise from advocates who have long warned about this public-health threat. Some, however, are concerned that the plan might not do enough to curb the use of these drugs in livestock. Released by the White House on 18 September […]

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