Category Archives: HEALTH

 US scientists try 1st gene editing in the body


OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Scientists for the first time have tried editing a gene inside the body in a bold attempt to permanently change a person’s DNA to try to cure a disease.

The experiment was done Monday in California on 44-year-old Brian Madeux. Through an IV, he received billions of copies of a corrective gene and a genetic tool to cut his DNA in a precise spot.

“It’s kind of humbling” to be the first to test this, said Madeux, who has a metabolic disease called Hunter syndrome. “I’m willing to take that risk. Hopefully it will help me and other people.”

Signs of whether it’s working may come in a month; tests will show for sure in three months.

If it’s successful, it could give a major boost to the fledgling field of gene therapy. Scientists have edited people’s genes before, altering cells in the lab that are then returned to patients. There also are gene therapies that don’t involve editing DNA.

But these methods can only be used for a few types of diseases. Some give results that may not last. Some others supply a new gene like a spare part, but can’t control where it inserts in the DNA, possibly causing a new problem like cancer.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

https://apnews.com/4ae98919b52e43d8a8960e0e260feb0a/AP-Exclusive:-US-scientists-try-1st-gene-editing-in-the-body

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FBI seeks Senate documents, signaling possible probe into sale of fetal tissue


The FBI has asked the Senate for unredacted documents it obtained from abortion providers, signaling agents may be investigating whether Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers illegally sold fetal tissue and body parts, according to sources familiar with the document request.

The request was made in recent days, the sources said, to the Senate Judiciary Committee, whose chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), last December referredPlanned Parenthood and several other abortion providers to the FBI for investigation after a lengthy probe into the transfers of fetal tissue.

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Grassley said at the time that his committee had uncovered enough evidence in its final investigative report to show abortion providers had transferred tissue and body parts from aborted fetuses to firms for use in research by charging dollar amounts above their actual costs.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/360154-fbi-seeks-senate-documents-signaling-possible-probe-into-sale-of-fetal-tissue

Plague: Madagascar outbreak feared out of control as cops seize bodies 


Charlotte Ndiaye, a World Health Organisation (WHO) worker, said: “The problem you have now among communities in Madagascar is that most families don’t want to give back the body.

“The police come to take the body. This is terrible. It is really terrible.”

She noted there is also a lack of an “official” plague burial system meaning many families don’t know what to do with their dead.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/world-news/659028/Plague-Black-Death-Madagascar-Africa-Spread-Death-Toll-Symptoms-WHO-Airborne-Pneumonic

Could Blood Plasma Be The Fountain Of Youth?

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Blood has always been known as “the Gift of Life” and a growing number of Bay Area researchers are currently trying to isolate a factor in blood that may turn back the hands of time.

“We don’t know how soon we’re going to defeat aging,” proclaimed Aubrey de Grey. “We should be able to keep people truly in a youthful state of health, no matter how long they live and that means the risk of death will not rise.”

De Grey is the Chief Science Officer and Co-founder of the SENS Research Foundation in Mountain View. He believes we can grow biologically younger.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2017/11/06/could-blood-plasma-be-the-fountain-of-youth/

Paradise Papers Shine Light on Where the Elite Hide Their Money


It’s called the Paradise Papers: the latest in a series of leaks made public by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists shedding light on the trillions of dollars that move through offshore tax havens.

The core of the leak, totaling more than 13.4 million documents, focuses on the Bermudan law firm Appleby, a 119-year old company that caters to blue chip corporations and very wealthy people. Appleby helps clients reduce their tax burden; obscure their ownership of assets like companies, private aircraft, real estate and yachts; and set up huge offshore trusts that in some cases hold billions of dollars.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/11/05/world/paradise-papers.html?referer=http://www.drudgereport.com/

Archaeologists discover mysterious void deep within Great Pyramid of Giza 


Archaeologists have uncovered a mysterious enclosure hidden deep inside the Great Pyramid of Giza, the oldest of the seven wonders of the ancient world.

The massive cavity stretches for at least 30 metres and lies above the grand gallery, an impressive ascending corridor that connects the Queen’s chamber to the King’s in the heart of the historic monument. It is the first major structure found in the pyramid since the 19th century.

It is unclear whether the void is a chamber or a corridor, or whether it played any more than a structural role in the pyramid’s construction – such as relieving weight on the grand gallery below. But measurements show that it has similar dimensions to the grand gallery, which is nearly 50 metres long, eight metres high and more than a metre wide.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/nov/02/archaeolgists-discover-mysterious-void-deep-within-great-pyramid-of-giza

Deadly airborne plague cases rocket by almost 40%

The deadly airborne plague spreading rapidly across Madagascar is now at ‘crisis’ point as cases have rocketed by 37 per cent in just five days, official figures reveal.

The outbreak, the ‘worst in 50 years’, is being fueled by a strain more lethal than the one which usually strikes the country off the coast of Africa.

The World Health Organization (WHO) now states there are 1,801 suspected cases – significantly higher than the 1,309 it reported last Thursday.

Academics have revealed such a jump in cases over the period of five days is concerning and have predicted it could get worse. The most recent statistics show there have been 127 deaths.

Professor Robin May, an infectious diseases expert at Birmingham University, told MailOnline that ‘whichever way you look’ at the outbreak, it’s ‘concerning definitely’.

Analysis of figures by MailOnline show the epidemic could strike a further 20,000 people in just a matter of weeks, if current trends continue. It could be made worse by crowds gathering for an annual celebration to honour the dead earlier this week.

The ‘truly unprecedented’ outbreak has prompted warnings in nine nearby countries – South Africa, Seychelles, La Reunion, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Comoros and Mauritius.

Two thirds of this year’s cases have been caused by the airborne pneumonic plague and means it is spread through coughing, sneezing or spitting. It is different to the traditional bubonic form that strikes the country each year.

Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, Professor Johnjoe McFadden, an expert in molecular genetics at the University of Surrey, said: ‘It’s a crisis at the moment and we don’t know how bad it’s going to get.’  

Professor Jimmy Whitworth, an international public health scientist at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, told MailOnline earlier today: ‘This outbreak though is the worst for 50 years or more.’

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-5043497/Deadly-airborne-plague-cases-rocket-40.html

Monsanto halts launch of chemical after users complain of rashes

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Monsanto Co put on hold the launch of a chemical designed to be applied to crop seeds on Wednesday following reports it causes rashes on people, in the latest instance of complaints about a company product that was approved by U.S. environmental regulators.

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https://ca.news.yahoo.com/monsanto-halts-launch-chemical-users-complain-rashes-010348833–finance.html

Algorithm can identify suicidal people using brain scans 

Nearly a million people worldwide die by suicide every year, and predicting suicide remains difficult, especially because many people feel uncomfortable talking about the issue. In a study published today in the journal Nature Communications, researchers observed the brain activity of two groups of adults — one who had suicidal thoughts and one who didn’t — while they thought about words such as “evil” or “praise.” They fed this data to an algorithm that learned to predict who had suicidal thoughts with 91 percent accuracy. It also predicted whether someone had attempted suicide before with 94 percent accuracy.

The algorithm isn’t perfect — and a medical test would have to be. It may also not become widely used since brain scans are expensive. But “it’d be nice to have this additional method,” says study author Marcel Just, a psychologist at Carnegie Mellon University.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/30/16570148/neuroscience-suicide-mental-health-brain-imagining-fmri-machine-learning-algorithm

Black Death: Warnings of global outbreak as plague continues to spread in Africa


Some 1,300 cases of the pneumonic plague, which is transmitted by air, have now been confirmed.

An estimated 50 million lives were lost as a result of the Black Death epidemic of the 1300s.

And now the deadly disease has spread into more African countries after taking root in Madagascar.

Countries affected include South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Comoros, the Seychelles, Mauritius and Reunion.

FOLLOW THE LINK FOR THE FULL REPORT – JR 

https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/656128/Plague-outbreak-global-black-death-Madagascar-Africa-WHO-South-Kenya-Ethiopia-Seychelles