Pharmacology


Hot off the presses: The FDA just approved the first biosimilar drug in the United States. Sandoz's Zarxio is used to boost the production of certain white blood cells in patients who are undergoing cancer chemotherapy, and are immunocompromised. Sarxio will compete with Amgen's Neupogen, which has been used for this purpose since its approval in 1991. 

An experimental compound known as GC-1 causes loss of weight and fat in mice in lab tests. The drug speeds up metabolism, or burning off, of fat cells, by activating the receptors for thyroid hormone, which play a role in regulating metabolism - the body's conversion of food into energy. Thyroid hormone receptors also help with adaptive thermogenesis, in which the body converts excess energy (calories and fat) to heat.

Until recently, there was no evidence that human adults had  energy-burning, "good" brown fat. It was only known that animals and human infants did  but now it is known that human adults do have brown fat, but it appears to lose its calorie-burning activity over time.

Every fertility specialist seeks to design the most effective treatment strategy possible for each couple seeking to become pregnant. Treatment is usually a complex process and fertility drugs are often part of the regimen. Along with the benefits of such drugs, however, come risks such as multiple gestation or pregnancy.

Rates of substance use are higher in people with mental health problems compared to the general population and particularly in people with bipolar disorder, with cannabis the street drug most frequently used.

Medical marijuana usage has been proliferating across the United States, primarily due to claims about pain management, but the demographics are baffling. Though women have 60 percent of medical visits for pain, 80 percent of medical marijuana prescriptions for pain have been men. 

Yet in instances where the prescriptions have been real, tolerance develops quickly, which means people are inhaling more and more carcinogens, and there are numerous other side effects. 
Extra virgin olive oil is believed to have heart health benefits but a new paper takes that one better and shows why it has been identified for its rapid destruction of cancer cells. 

While scientists have shown that the oleocanthal compound found in  extra virgin olive oil   causes cell death in cancer cells, they have been unable to provide an explanation for this phenomenon until now. 

Antipsychotic medications for pediatric patients climbed 62 percent for children on Medicaid between 2002 and 2007, reaching 2.4 percent of those youth. Unless we really believe that poor kids are undergoing an epidemic of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, it's time to examine prescription practices. 

More kids nationwide are taking medications designed to treat such mental illnesses as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and pediatricians and psychiatrists at the University of Vermont want to know why.

David Rettew, M.D., associate professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at University of Vermont, and colleagues conducted a study to find out "whether the right youth are being prescribed the right medications at the proper time in their treatment."

The latest outbreak of Ebola virus disease has caused the deaths of more than 9,400 people worldwide and created an international outcry so loud even the National Institutes of Health decided to start funding work on it again
Each year millions of infants, toddlers and preschool children require anesthesia or sedation for various procedures and a new review suggest caution about their use.

A team of anesthesiology investigators and toxicologists writing in the New England Journal of Medicine reviewed existing animal and human studies for the impact of anesthetics on developing brains. 

Observational studies of children have been weak, but they still suggested a correlation between children who had received anesthetics and long-term cognitive impairments such as learning disabilities. Children between the ages of one and three appeared to be at a higher risk of adverse effects.
A pre-clinical study of ANAVEX 2-73 found that it prevents mitochondrial dysfunction and blocks resulting oxidative stress and apoptosis (cell death) in a nontransgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease (AD).

Mitochondrial damages have been consistently reported as an early cause of Alzheimer's disease and appear before amyloid-beta plaques and memory decline in Alzheimer's patients and transgenic mice. If so, by preserving mitochondrial functionality and reducing other key Alzheimer's disease hallmarks, it has the potential to prevent, stop, slow or reverse the disease, in addition to treating its symptoms.