Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Keep on Truckin… Blood Sugar Control Is Impacted With Even Just Three Days of Inactivity

August 31st, 2011 by Ryan Luce No Comments
Written by Michael O'Leary

Dr. John Thyfault
People with type 2 diabetes know they should exercise, but a new study shows stopping exercise, even for a short time, impairs blood sugar control even among healthy people who do not have type 2 diabetes.

Led by Dr. John Thyfault, an assistant professor at the University of Missouri, nutrition and exercise physiology researchers found that stopping regular physical exercise for as little as three days resulted in changes in gylcemic control linked to development of type 2 diabetes in healthy people. (Link to published site)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Does Exercise Interfere With Metformin?

August 25th, 2011 by Ryan Luce No Comments
written by Michael O’Leary
Sometimes research surprises, especially when the results seem counter-intuitive. Canadian researchers had just such a surprise when their study looking at the impact that drug therapy and exercise have  on people with type 2 diabetes showed that exercise seems to interfere with the glucose-lowering effects of metformin.
Research has shown that metformin reduces blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes, and exercise improves insulin sensitivity, so intuitively, one would think doing both would reduce glucose levels even more. But in their small study of 10 people the researchers were surprised to see the opposite occurred. (Link to published site)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Natural Language Search Tools Hold Promise for EHR-based Quality Improvement

Watson, powered by IBM POWER7, 
uses natural language processing to 
answer questions posed in human
speech. (Photo courtesy of IBM) 
Searching electronic medical records using natural language processing identified postoperative complications better than more commonly used data codes, researchers say.

Led by Dr Harvey Murff, of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Vanderbilt University, researchers conducted a study of database searching to identify a set of 20 measures of patient safety indicators based on discharge coding to screen for potential adverse events that occur during hospitalization. The study appears in today’s Journal of the American Medical Association. (Link to published site)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dr. Janet Stanford, led an
international team that
identified gene variants
linked to lethal prostate
cancer. (Photo by Suzie
Fitzhugh, courtesy
DNA bits can ID most likely fatal prostate cancers
Researchers have  identified inherited gene variations that provide doctors with a way to predict which prostate cancers need to be treated aggressively and which may be safely watched.

Led by Dr. Janet Stanford, co-director of the Program in Prostate Cancer Research at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, in Seattle, the researchers analyzed DNA in blood samples from 1,309 prostate cancer patients in the Seattle area.  They found 22 bits of DNA, called single-nucleotide polymorphisms or SNPs that are significantly associated with prostate cancer-specific mortality. When they then compared them with a similar Swedish study, they identified five of these SNPs in common, suggesting that these five SNPs are valid markers of prostate-cancer mortality. The study was published Aug. 16 in the journal Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention. (Link to published site)

Friday, August 19, 2011

MRI Of Vessel Wall Thickness Links Pericardial Fat With CVD

Upper frames show minimal pericardial
fat corresponding to minimal 
eccentricity in cross-sectional image of
coronary artery. Lower frames show 
a large amount of pericardial fat with a 
corresponding high degree of plaque
eccentricity in cross-
sectional image of right 
coronary artery. (Images used by permission 
of Radiology)
Using MRI to measure plaque in coronary arteries, researchers have determined that fat around the heart is a better predictor of atherosclerosis than BMI and waist circumference in asymptomatic men but not women.

When the researchers made adjustments for BMI, waist circumference, C-reactive protein level and coronary artery calcium content, the relationship between pericardial fat and coronary atherosclerosis remained significant in men but not in women.  (Link to published site)

Is There A Connection Between Pesticides and Type 2 Diabetes?
written by Michael O’Leary
People with high levels of certain pesticides in their blood may have an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, a new Finnish study shows.
A note of caution before being alarmed, however, the study involved 8,760 Finnish citizens born in or around Helsinki between 1934 and 1944, and are now 67 to 77 years old. These people grew up before the pesticides called persistent organic pollutants were banned in the U.S. and other countries starting in the 1970s, as reported by Reuters Health.
The new study led by Riikka Airaksinen, of the department of Environmental Health, Chemical Exposure Unit, National Institute for Health and Welfare in Finland appears in the August issue of Diabetes Care and is not the first to link these chemicals, called organochlorines, to type 2 diabetes. (Link to published site)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

One Big Step for Mannkind’s Afrezza Inhaler

August 17th, 2011 by Ryan Luce Comment
written by Michael O’Leary
The FDA has approved clinical trial designs for an inhaled diabetes drug for patients with type 1 diabetes, and people with type 2 diabetes who have been unable to achieve adequate control with metformin.
The drug, trademarked as Afrezza® by MannKind Corporation is an ultra-fast-acting mealtime insulin therapy that uses a pre-metered dose inhaler to deliver insulin in powder form. The drug dissolves immediately upon inhalation and delivers insulin quickly to the blood stream, according to company documents. Peak insulin levels are achieved in 12 to 14 minutes, mirroring the early release of mealtime insulin observed in health individuals. (Link to published site)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Do Hot Dogs Cause Diabetes?

August 16th, 2011 by Ryan Luce Comment

by Michael O’Leary
If you’re heading to the state fair this summer, you ought to skip the brats, dogs and sausages, and head to the dairy barn according to the largest study to date to look at processed and unprocessed red meats and diabetes risk.
A new Harvard study has found that red meat intake increases the risk of type 2 diabetes by 19 percent, and processed red meat has been linked to a whopping 51 percent increase in risk. (Link to published site)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Study Ranks CT Colonography Less Cost Effective Than Stool Test, Colonoscopy

Study Ranks CT Colonography Less Cost-Effective Than Stool Tests, Colonoscopy
CT colonography is better than not screening,
but is the most costly, least effective of the
screening methods available (Photo used
by permission of the RSNA)
Screening people for colorectal cancer using CT colonography is more cost-effective than not screening people at all, but not as effective as every other screening method currently available, a new cost-effectiveness study shows.

Led by Dr. David Vanness, assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, the researchers compared the cost-effectiveness of CT colonography for colorectal cancer screening in average-risk asymptomatic subjects in the United States aged 50 years. (Link to published site)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

First long-term success for gene therapy cures leukemia

Wednesday, August 10, 2011
In the study the researchers used
a disabled 
lentivirus to introduce a
gene into T-cells 
that would pro-
duce a protein on the cell 
that would lock on to the leukemic
(Image provided by the
National Institutes of Health)
For the first time a patient’s own cells have been successfully re-engineered to kill leukemia cells over a long period of time, researchers in Pennsylvania report.

In this first successful use of gene therapy to treat cancer, two people with advanced stage chronic lymphocytic leukemia have seen their cancers eliminated for more than a year, and a third has been living with the cancer held in check for that long. Chronic lymphocytic leukemia, or CLL, is a common form of leukemia that causes over-production of non-functioning B-cells, the blood cells that normally protect the body with antibodies.  (Link to published site

Benefits of Weight Loss For Overweight People With Type 2 – Including Increased Sex

No one is saying dieting will double your pleasure and double your fun. But a new study shows that regardless of which type of two diets used, obese men with type 2 diabetes who lost weight gained both an increase in sexual desire and sexual function.

In addition the small study showed multiple benefits to blood glucose and cardiovascular health as a result of a weight loss of about 10 percent in men who started the study with a Body Mass Index (BMI) over 30 and a waist over 40 inches (102 cm). The study was published online Aug. 5, 2011 in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. (Link to published site)

Friday, August 5, 2011

Optical coherence tomography (OCT)
allows 3-D imaging of sub-
surface features in microscopic 
detail. (Images courtesy of MIT)
Researchers report an important advance in developing an ultra-high speed, optical coherence tomography (OCT) system that one day may allow doctors to see just below the surface of some tissues with microscopic detail. The technology is aimed at detecting microscopic pre-cancerous changes in the esophagus or colon.
Led by Dr. James Fujimoto, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the researchers published details of the advance in image capture speed and device development in the August issue of the journal Biomedical Optics Express.

"Ultrahigh-speed imaging is important because it enables the acquisition of large three-dimensional volumetric data sets with micron-scale resolution," Fujimoto said in a prepared statement. (Link to published site.)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Type 2 diabetes management? There’s an app for that

written by Michael O’Leary
Soon people with type 2 diabetes may be entering their blood glucose readings into their cell phones, but it won’t be just another cell phone app. The new generation mobile health tools will record the data for your doctors and link to online software that will track your status and text you with messages to help manage your diabetes.
People using the system, developed by WellDoc, in a clinical trial achieved an average 1.9 percent decline in their A1C, which was significantly lower than the 0.7 percent decline in the usual care group. (Link to published site)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

FDA Panel Turns Down Dapagliflozin

August 3, 2011 by Ryan Luce No Comments
written by Michael O’Leary

A FDA panel dealt a setback to Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and AstraZeneca PLC last week voting 9-6 not to recommend approval dapagliflozin for treatment of type 2 diabetes. The blow came as a bit of a surprise to experts who had expected the panel to approve the drug with some post marketing requirements due to some adverse complications. (Link to published site)