Julie's Feed
Apr 16, 2014

Pill developed to fight measles passes key test in animals

CHICAGO, April 16 (Reuters) – Scientists have developed an
experimental pill that helped protect ferrets from a
measles-like virus, raising hope for a treatment to thwart the
deadly infection in unvaccinated people who have been exposed to
the virus, according to an international study released on
Wednesday.

In the study, all of the ferrets were infected with canine
distemper virus, which is closely related to measles. When
treated with the drug, known as ERDRP-0519, the ferrets survived
the normally fatal infection and levels of the virus were
sharply reduced.

Apr 10, 2014

Scientists grow viable vaginas from girls’ own cells

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Four young women born with abnormal or missing vaginas were implanted with lab-grown versions made from their own cells, the latest success in creating replacement organs that have so far included tracheas, bladders and urethras.

Follow-up tests show the new vaginas are indistinguishable from the women’s own tissue and have grown in size as the young women, who got the implants as teens, matured.

Mar 27, 2014

Scientists build first synthetic yeast chromosome

CHICAGO (Reuters) – An international team of scientists has built a modified yeast chromosome from scratch, the latest step in the quest to make the world’s first synthetic yeast genome, an advance that would lead to new strains of the organism to help produce industrial chemicals, medicines and biofuels.

Instead of just copying nature, the team did extensive tinkering with their chromosome, deleting unwanted genes here and there. It then successfully incorporated the designer chromosome into living yeast cells, endowing them with new capabilities not found in naturally occurring yeast.

Mar 27, 2014

As many as 1 in 68 U.S. kids may have autism: CDC

CHICAGO (Reuters) – As many as one in 68 U.S. children may have autism, U.S. health officials said on Thursday, a sharp increase over an estimate of 1 in 88 children just two years ago that raises questions about why the number has risen so dramatically.

Researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted in their report that the data, gleaned from a study of children in 11 communities, could not be generalized to the national population. They also did not study why the rates were so much higher.

Mar 23, 2014

As many as 32,000 kids infected with drug-resistant TB: report

CHICAGO (Reuters) – As many as 32,000 children worldwide become sick each year with a drug-resistant “superbug” strain of tuberculosis, according to new estimates by U.S. researchers that for the first time quantify rates of this difficult-to-treat form of TB.

Overall, as many as 1 million children become sick with TB each year, about twice the number previously thought, and of these, only a third of the cases are ever diagnosed, the study found.

Mar 19, 2014

New heart guidelines may put 12.8 million more Americans on statins

CHICAGO, March 19 (Reuters) – New guidelines on heart health
that sparked fierce debate among U.S. cardiologists last fall
could lead 12.8 million more Americans to take
cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, U.S. researchers said on
Wednesday.

The new estimate would mean 56 million people, or nearly
half of the U.S. population between the ages of 40 to 75, could
be eligible for taking a statin to prevent heart disease. The
findings were published on Wednesday in the New England Journal
of Medicine’s online edition.

Mar 6, 2014

The dawning of the age of genomic medicine, finally

LA JOLLA, California (Reuters) – When President Bill Clinton announced in 2000 that Craig Venter and Dr. Francis Collins of the National Human Genome Research Institute had succeeded in mapping the human genome, he solemnly declared that the discovery would “revolutionize” the treatment of virtually all human disease.

The expectation was that this single reference map of the 3 billion base pairs of DNA — the human genetic code — would quickly unlock the secrets of Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cancer and other scourges of human health.

Mar 4, 2014

For his next act, genome wiz Craig Venter takes on aging

, March 4 (Reuters) – Craig Venter, the U.S.
scientist who raced the U.S. government to map the human genome
over a decade ago and created synthetic life in 2010, is now on
a quest to treat age-related disease.

Venter has teamed up with stem cell pioneer Dr Robert Hariri
and X Prize Foundation founder Dr Peter Diamandis to form Human
Longevity Inc, a company that will use both genomics and stem
cell therapies to find treatments that allow aging adults to
stay healthy and functional for as long as possible.

Mar 4, 2014

For his next act, Craig Venter takes on human aging

La Jolla, California (Reuters) – Craig Venter, the U.S. scientist who raced the U.S. government to map the human genome over a decade ago and created synthetic life in 2010, is now on a quest to treat age-related disease.

Venter has teamed up with stem cell pioneer Dr Robert Hariri and X Prize Foundation founder Dr Peter Diamandis to form Human Longevity Inc, a company that will use both genomics and stem cell therapies to find treatments that allow aging adults to stay healthy and functional for as long as possible.

Feb 26, 2014

Obamacare insurers in Louisiana delay HIV policy change

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana and two smaller insurers will delay implementing policies to stop poor HIV patients from paying for Obamacare plans with funds from the federal Ryan White HIV/AIDS assistance program.

The decision, which the insurers revealed at a federal court hearing on Tuesday, prompted the judge to lift a temporary restraining order that forced them to delay the change in policy for 14 days.

    • About Julie

      "Julie Steenhuysen has been covering health and science topics for Reuters for the past decade, first as a medical device correspondent, then as team leader for the equities team covering U.S. pharmaceuticals and healthcare companies. For the past 4 years, Julie has worked as U.S. health and science correspondent, focusing on coverage for a general news audience."
    • Follow Julie