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Tuberculosis now rivals AIDS as leading cause of death: WHO

For the first time, tuberculosis infections rivaled HIV/AIDS as a leading cause of death from infectious diseases, the World Health Organization said in a report released on Wednesday.   It found that during 2014, 1.1 million people died of TB in 2014. During the same period, HIV/AIDS killed 1.2 million people globally, including 400,000 who […]

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Videogame maker says study shows its game helps manage ADHD symptoms

Children with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) show signs of improvement after playing a videogame for 30 minutes a day rather than taking a pill, the U.S. company developing the treatment said on Wednesday. Diagnoses for ADHD have risen in recent decades, and some 9.5 percent of children aged 3-17 in the United States had […]

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Theranos’ Problems Pile Up as the FDA Releases Inspection Notes from Two Lab Visits

Blood-testing startup Theranos Inc., under fire after reports that the company overstated the ability of its tests to accurately perform several dozen types of measurements, has flaws in the process it uses to validate its products, U.S. Food and Drug Administration inspectors found. Heavily redacted inspection reports, posted Tuesday by the FDA, said Theranos’s “design […]

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U.S. FDA warns Novartis on manufacturing violations at 2 India plants

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned Novartis AG last week after the Swiss firm was found in violation of manufacturing practices last year at two of its India drug-making plants, Novartis said.   The warning, issued to Novartis’s generic drugs unit Sandoz on Oct. 22, came after FDA officials inspected its Turbhe and Kalwa […]

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#FreeBacon topic sizzles on social media after WHO meat report

Bacon lovers took to social media on Tuesday to express disdain over a World Health Organization report that said processed meat is likely to cause cancer.   The hashtags #FreeBacon, #Bacongeddon and #JeSuisBacon were among the top-trending topics worldwide on Twitter for a second straight day. Celebrities, politicians and ordinary consumers were reacting to Monday’s […]

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Gilead hepatitis C drug sales trend flattens, shares dip

Gilead Sciences Inc on Tuesday said its quarterly profit rose 70 percent, but sales growth for its hepatitis C drugs flattened as health insurers limited access to the expensive treatments. Shares of the biotechnology company fell slightly. Gilead’s quarterly product sales rose 37 percent to $8.2 billion. Sales of hepatitis C drugs Sovaldi and Harvoni […]

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Macrocure’s cell therapy for wounds fails late study

Israeli biotechnology company Macrocure Ltd said it would “analyze all strategic options” after its cell therapy for hard-to-treat wounds failed a late-stage U.S. study, pushing its shares down more than 50 percent after the bell. Macrocure’s CureXcell, already in use in Israel, is a formulation of living human white blood cells activated to stimulate the […]

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FDA approves Amgen’s injected immunotherapy for melanoma

U.S. health regulators on Tuesday approved Amgen Inc’s novel cancer immunotherapy for injection into melanoma lesions and lymph nodes of patients with the deadliest form of skin cancer that returns after initial surgery. The drug, to be sold under the brand name Imlygic, is an engineered version of a herpes virus that kills cancer cells […]

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Arena Pharmaceuticals Announces New Strategic Focus and Cost Reduction Plan

– Strategic priorities include clinical-stage pipeline and core research function –   SAN DIEGO, Oct. 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARNA) today announced plans to improve efficiencies and reduce costs as it focuses on the advancement of its research and development priorities. Arena intends to focus on its key strengths by concentrating […]

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U.S. deaths drop for leading causes

(Reuters Health) – The U.S. death rate for all causes is continuing to decline, aided by drops in fatalities from leading causes like heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes and accidents, new research finds. Between 1969 and 2013, the death rate for all causes declined 43 percent from about 1,279 people for each 100,000 individuals in […]

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Shire to resubmit dry-eye disease drug to FDA with new study data

London-listed pharma firm Shire said its dry-eye disease drug lifitegrast significantly improved patient symptoms in a new study, supporting a re-submission of the potentially block-busting medicine to U.S. regulators early next year. Shares in Shire jumped more than 6 percent after it announced the positive results of the study on Tuesday. They were trading up […]

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GSK heart drug flops in study, shingles vaccine on track

An experimental heart drug from GlaxoSmithKline failed to work as hoped in the first part of a large clinical trial, the company said on Tuesday, dealing a blow to its pipeline of new medicines.   Losmapimod was being assessed as a treatment to reduce the risk of further cardiovascular problems after heart attacks, but it […]

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Amgen, Cytokinetics heart failure drug succeeds in mid-stage study

Amgen Inc and Cytokinetics Inc said on Tuesday their experimental drug for chronic heart failure showed significant improvement in cardiac function in the second part of a mid-stage study. The 448 patients in the trial were given an oral formulation of the drug omecamtiv mecarbil for 20 weeks and observed for 24 weeks, the companies […]

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Bio Blast Pharma reports promising data on muscle wasting drug

Bio Blast Pharma Ltd said its lead experimental drug showed signs of being effective in treating patients with a rare muscle wasting disorder, besides also hitting the main goals of safety and tolerability. The company said the experimental drug, Cabaletta, hit multiple efficacy endpoints during a mid-stage trial on patients suffering from oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy, […]

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Novartis AG to Cough Up $390 Million to Settle U.S. Kickback Case

Novartis AG agreed to pay $390 million to resolve a lawsuit claiming the company paid kickbacks to increase sales of several prescription drugs. The agreement is preliminary. The payment covers all claims related to the medicines Myfortic, Exjade, Tasigna, Gleevec and TOBI, the company said. The U.S. had sought as much as $3.3 billion from […]

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Bacon and other processed meats can cause cancer, experts say

Eating processed meats like hot dogs, sausages and bacon can cause colorectal cancer in humans, and red meat is also a likely cause of the disease, World Health Organization (WHO) experts said. The review by WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), released on Monday, said additionally that there was some link between the […]

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Cancer diagnosis brings income loss for families

(Reuters Health) – The average U.S. adult diagnosed with cancer will miss five weeks of work in the first year and see total family income decline by 20 percent, according to a new study. Those numbers may be even higher for some, as they average the experiences of people with various types and stages of […]

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FDA sees no heart risks from Novartis’ Parkinson’s drug

U.S. health regulators said on Monday that there was no evidence of increased cardiovascular risks related to Novartis AG’s treatment, Stalevo, for Parkinson’s disease. Recommendations for using the drug, which won U.S. approval in 2003, will remain the same on the labels, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said, after examining data from a required […]

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Merck’s Keytruda extends survival in lung cancer study

Merck & Co’s approved Keytruda lung cancer treatment provided superior overall survival to chemotherapy in a late-stage study of patients with advanced disease whose tumors produce a protein called PD-L1 associated with increased risk of the disease. The U.S. drugmaker on Monday said patients taking the approved 2 milligram dosage of Keytruda and those taking […]

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MERS, Ebola, bird flu: Science’s big missed opportunities

Anyone who goes down with flu in Europe this winter could be asked to enroll in a randomized clinical trial in which they will either be given a drug, which may or may not work, or standard advice to take bed rest and paracetamol. Those who agree could be helping the world prepare for the […]

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