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Friday 18 October 2019
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Topic: Featured Articles

September 23, 2019
Here we present a brief summary of skin prick testing in the diagnosis of immediate hypersensitivity

Individuals who suffer from allergic problems, such as rhinitis, bronchial asthma, food allergy or atopic dermatitis, are usually subjected to allergic skin tests to reveal the causative factors, to put prevention strategies in place, and to implement the most suitable therapy.

September 4, 2019
Dr Joaquín Casariego discusses Janssen’s solid tumour portfolio and pipeline, highlighting their commitment to improving outcomes in the solid tumour space
Having worked in the pharmaceutical industry for over 20 years, I joined Janssen in 2016 as EMEA Medical Director Oncology and began my current role as EMEA Therapeutic Area Lead Oncology in 2019.
 
August 27, 2019
Although this is early research in the lab, the findings suggest this approach could help to boost the effects of innovative cancer treatments, such as CAR-T therapy, which so far have not been used successfully to tackle solid tumours

Scientists may have found a way to pull down the protective wall that surrounds tumours, potentially re-exposing them to the killing power of the immune system and immunotherapy treatments.

The study was part funded by Cancer Research UK and published in EBioMedicine.

August 22, 2019
Research funded by the British Heart Foundation puts into question a long-held medical myth that women tend to suffer unusual or 'atypical' heart attack symptoms, and emphasises the need for both sexes to recognise and act on the warning signs
Women who have heart attacks experience the same key symptoms as men, quashing one of the reasons given for women receiving unequal care. 
 
Research funded by the British Heart Foundation puts into question a long-held medical myth that women tend to suffer unusual or 'atypical' heart attack symptoms, and emphasises the need for both sexes to recognise and act on the warning signs.
 
August 16, 2019
Researchers at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and collaborators identified genetic changes in the newly-emerging species that allow it to thrive on a sugar-rich diet, evade common hospital disinfectants and spread easily
Clostridium difficile is evolving into two separate species, with one group highly adapted to spread in hospitals, according to UK researchers. 
 
August 15, 2019
First time that researchers have been able to use synovial fluid from human osteoarthritis patients to excite sensory nerve cells
A team at the University of Cambridge has shown how, in osteoarthritis patients, the viscous lubricant that ordinarily allows our joints to move smoothly triggers a pain response from nerve cells similar that caused by chilli peppers.
 
August 15, 2019
Discovery gives new insight into both how and why many lupus patients suffer from these symptoms
A breakthrough study by a SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University research team in the US has identified a specific antibody target implicated in neuropsychiatric symptoms of lupus. 
 
These symptoms, including cognitive impairment, mood disorders, seizures, headaches and psychosis, are among the most prevalent manifestations of the disease and occur in as many as 80% of adults and 95% of children with lupus. 
 
August 9, 2019
Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in the US have identified a pathway in the immune system activated in Crohn's disease that holds promise for investigating new treatments
Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine identified a pathway in the immune system activated in Crohn's disease (CD) and which holds promise for investigating new treatments.
 
August 8, 2019
Urine biomarkers represent promising candidates for the early diagnosis as well as the monitoring of disease activity and therapeutic responses in lupus nephritis
University of Houston researcher Chandra Mohan is reporting in Arthritis Research and Therapy that clotting proteins, both those that promote blood clots (pro-thrombotic) and those that work to dissipate them (thrombolytic), are elevated in the urine of patients who suffer from lupus nephritis (LN).
 
August 6, 2019
Although previous studies have found many genes that exert an effect on these diseases, research have been unable to explain the whole genetic background to the origin of asthma, hay fever and eczema
In a new study from SciLifeLab at Uppsala University, researchers have found a total of 141 genes that largely explain the genetic risk underlying asthma, hay fever and eczema. 
 
As many as 41 of the genes identified have not previously been linked to an elevated risk for these diseases. The results are published in the scientific journal Human Molecular Genetics.1
 
August 6, 2019
Transplanting T-cells boosts efficacy of immunotherapies in several cancers
Researchers have developed a way to use immunotherapy drugs against treatment-resistant non-Hodgkin's lymphomas for the first time by combining them with stem cell transplantation, an approach that also dramatically increased the success of the drugs in melanoma and lung cancer
 
The study was published in Cancer Discovery in August.
 
August 6, 2019
Research suggests that IP1867B could be effective against glioblastoma, one of the most aggressive forms of human brain cancer, which kills thousands of patients within a year
A new drug, known as IP1867B, could be used for future treatments of brain tumours.
 
Dr Richard Hill led the research team at the Brain Tumour Research Centre at University of Portsmouth, working with the University of Algarve (Portugal), the University of Liverpool (UK) and Innovate Pharmaceuticals to examine IP1867B.
 
The research team showed that IP1867B worked with existing cancer treatments boosting their effectiveness and, in some cases, restored sensitivity to some treatments.
August 5, 2019
A significant increase in the incidence of allergies has been registered in developed countries, first beginning in the 1960s and steadily progressing thereafter
A study from NHS Digital – data from which were reported on the BBC website in 20161 –  showed that there had been a 33% increase in admissions for different forms of allergy and an increase of 19% of cases of anaphylactic shock in hospital facilities in the UK in the preceding five years.
 
And the UK is not alone in this, in that a significant increase in the incidence of allergies has been registered in developed countries, first beginning in the 1960s and steadily progressing thereafter. 
August 2, 2019
It is the first time that researchers have found a biomarker for kidney transplant rejection by antibodies.
A group of European scientists led by KU Leuven has found a biomarker that can identify patients with symptoms of kidney rejection symptoms after a transplant as a result of antibodies. 
 
The identification can be done through a simple blood test and at an early stage. It is the first known biomarker for rejection by antibodies. The researchers hope that the test can be further developed quickly for use in the hospital.
 
August 2, 2019
Scientists have identified a subtype of immune cell that drives the production of antibodies associated with anaphylaxis and other allergic reactions
Scientists have identified a subtype of immune cell that drives the production of antibodies associated with anaphylaxis and other allergic reactions. 
 
The research was funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, and reveals a potential target for new therapies to prevent severe allergic reactions. The findings are published online in the journal Science.
 
July 31, 2019
The World Health Organization estimates that 235 million people around the world suffer from asthma. But little is known about the impact of asthma on symptomatic people's ability to work.

A multi-national survey has revealed that asthma sufferers are missing nearly one-tenth of work hours due to their symptoms, which also results in a loss of productivity and affects their emotional wellbeing.

This new research, published in the Journal of Asthma and Allergy, surveyed over 1500 symptomatic asthma patients across six countries and found that, on average three out of four workers could not work to their full potential.

July 18, 2019
New research on the autoimmune disease systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) provides hints to the origins of this disorder and the results have been published in Nature Immunology
In people with SLE, their B cells are abnormally activated. That makes them produce antibodies that react against their own tissues, causing a variety of symptoms, such as fatigue, joint pain, skin rashes and kidney problems.
 
July 18, 2019
Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have investigated the link between osteoarthritis and mortality in an epidemiological study
Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have investigated the link between osteoarthritis and mortality in an epidemiological study. It was shown that the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease was higher for people with osteoarthritis than for the rest of the population.
 
July 18, 2019
The development of high-throughput ‘omics’ technologies (genomics, transcriptomics or metabolomics) that allow simultaneous examination of thousands of genes, transcripts and proteins is expected to change the playing field
Despite the large number of laboratory tests ordered daily, diagnostic tools proven to be effective when managing immune-mediated diseases are limited, often forcing physicians to rely on a mixture of clinical, laboratory and radiological features to establish a diagnosis. 
 
July 15, 2019
The rapid, non-invasive technique could help clinicians diagnose the disease earlier, and assess how effectively the selected treatment is controlling the progression of the disease
A new way of detecting rheumatoid arthritis using infrared light could offer an objective way of diagnosing the disease and monitoring treatment effectiveness, a University of Birmingham, UK study shows.
 
July 15, 2019
Researchers have identified new biomarkers for IBS in urine, which could lead to better treatments and reduce the need for costly and invasive colonoscopy procedures currently used for diagnosis
Scientists at McMaster University in Canada have identified new biomarkers for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in urine, which could lead to better treatments and reduce the need for costly and invasive colonoscopy procedures currently used for diagnosis.
 
July 8, 2019
Carefully designed, integrated multi-'omic' studies could accelerate the use of precision medicine for asthma patients, according to researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, USA
In an invited review article published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Scott Tyler, PhD, and Supinda Bunyavanich, MD, MPH, report that numerous studies have shown the value of applying transcriptomics and other 'omic' approaches for defining asthma subtypes - but they also cite the need for more studies aimed at pulling together these disparate data streams for a more comprehensive view of the disease.
 
July 4, 2019
Research has shown that calcium-channel blockers may be linked with an increased risk of the bowel condition, diverticulosis
Diverticulosis causes small bulges or pouches to appear in the lining of the intestine. Particularly affecting the elderly (as many as 65% of over 85s may be affected), diverticulosis can in some cases lead to a medical emergency if the pouches become infected or burst.
 
The new early-stage research finding comes from a team of scientists led by Imperial College London, who investigated the effectiveness and side effects of three common blood pressure medications: ACE-inhibitors, beta-blockers and calcium channel blockers.
July 2, 2019
'Back to school asthma' - a seasonal peak in cases associated with the start of the school year in September - is linked to a tripling in the rate of GP appointments across England

'Back to school asthma’- a seasonal peak in cases associated with the start of the school year in September - is linked to a tripling in the rate of general practitioner (GP) appointments across England, reveals research published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.1