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Monday 18 February 2019
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Topic: Featured Articles

February 11, 2019
A study in identical twin toddlers has helped scientists to identify the first gene mutation that can single-handedly cause juvenile idiopathic arthritis
Identical twin toddlers who presented with severe arthritis helped scientists to identify the first gene mutation that can single-handedly cause a juvenile form of this inflammatory joint disease.
 
By investigating the DNA of individual blood cells of both children and then modelling the genetic defect in a mouse model, the research team led by Adrian Liston (VIB-KU Leuven) was able to unravel the disease mechanism. The findings may help to develop an appropriate treatment as well.
 
January 15, 2019
The findings of a study published in Nature Medicine might inform research to develop microbiome-based therapies to prevent or treat food allergy
Scientists at the University of Chicago have found that gut microbes from healthy human infant donors transplanted into mice protected animals exposed to milk from experiencing allergic reactions, while gut microbes transplanted from infants allergic to milk did not.
 
The study, published in Nature Medicine,1 was supported in part by NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. 
 
December 17, 2018
Early diagnosis is mandatory in order to start treatment before irreversible tissue damage takes place and this approach results in a better prognosis (that is, less organ damage) and in reduced costs of the disease

 

December 17, 2018
There are scant data that describe how often pregnant women deliberately stop eating a specific food item in order to prevent future food allergies in their newborns
Pregnant women routinely swear off alcohol and tobacco to boost their chances of having a healthy baby. What about common food allergens like nuts and milk?
 
December 17, 2018
The researchers hope the Pediatric Asthma Risk Score will become the most common tool used by medical practitioners to predict asthma and help prevent the common airway disease from developing
Scientists at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in the US have created and tested a decision tool that appears to be the most accurate, non-invasive method yet developed to predict asthma in young children.
 
The researchers hope the Pediatric Asthma Risk Score (PARS) will become the most common tool used by medical practitioners to predict asthma and help prevent the common airway disease from developing.
 
December 17, 2018
The study results indicate the need for a personalised approach to delirium in the ICU
A population heath study from the Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University Center for Aging Research has determined that haloperidol, the drug most commonly used to treat delirium in hospital medical and surgical intensive care units (ICUs), did not benefit elective thoracic surgery ICU patients when given prophylactically, with the possible exception of those who have had surgery to remove their oesophagus.
 
The study results indicate the need for a personalised approach to delirium in the ICU.
 
December 13, 2018
The role of NGS in myeloid neoplasms with a focus on the broad utility of variants and a brief introduction to blood disorders, NGS and the considerations for testing clonal myeloid malignancies is discussed
Myeloid malignancies are complex clonal diseases arising in haematopoietic stem or progenitor cells. These heterogenous disorders comprise many different subtypes such as myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN), myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), myelodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasms (MDS/MPN) and acute myeloid leukaemia (AML).
 
December 11, 2018
The study was a retrospective analysis of all patients with acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction treated at Triemli Hospital in Switzerland between 2000 and 2016

Women are being urged to call an ambulance immediately if they have heart attack symptoms, following research showing they wait longer than men to get help. The study has been published in European Heart Journal: Acute Cardiovascular Care, a publication of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).1

December 10, 2018
Men with inflamed guts are four to five times at risk for prostate cancer and are in need of more careful screening
Men with inflammatory bowel disease have four to five times higher risk of being diagnosed with prostate cancer, reports a 20-year study from Northwestern Medicine.
 
This is the first report to show men with inflammatory bowel disease have higher than average PSA (prostate-specific antigen) values, and this group also has a significantly higher risk of potentially dangerous prostate cancer.
 
December 7, 2018
Researchers at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have published results showing that online cognitive behavioural therapy can be useful in treating gastrointestinal disorders in children when no physical cause can be found

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) online can be useful in treating gastrointestinal disorders in children when no physical cause can be found.

This is the viewpoint of researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden that is described in a new study published in the journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.1

December 6, 2018
Harmonisation of the diagnostic performance of existing serological assays, finding novel markers to reduce the diagnostic limitation of seronegativity and exploring the predictive value of autoantibodies are the major goals of serodiagnostic research in rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a prevalent chronic inflammatory autoimmune disease mainly characterised by joint swelling and pain, affecting approximately 0.5–1% of the population in industrialised countries.1

December 6, 2018
Observations from a recent Phase II trial support further development of ustekinumab as a new therapy for SLE, and results from Phase III trials are awaited

Development of new treatments for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) has been challenging.

Many components of the immune system have been identified as targets for novel therapies, but the majority of the clinical trials have failed. However, many trials are ongoing and some of them have reported promising preliminary results.

December 6, 2018
Nexvax2 is currently the only disease-modifying therapeutic in clinical development for patients with coeliac disease
December 6, 2018
One-year open-label extension study ongoing, with patients already well treated with ABX464 for a total of 5 to 12 months (induction and maintenance study)
Abivax, a biotechnology company harnessing the immune system to develop treatments for inflammatory/autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases and cancer, has announced that the Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) has recommended continuation of its ongoing 12-month open-label maintenance extension study, ABX464-102, continuing its completed randomised, placebo-controlled Phase IIa induction trial, ABX464-101.
 
December 4, 2018
The researchers used a next-generation peptide-based immunoassay to subdivide allergenic milk proteins into smaller peptide fragments — called epitopes — and measured the reactivity of the epitopes to a patient’s IgE/IgG4 antibodies
AllerGenis has reported research results in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology(JACI) that demonstrate the ability to predict, with significant accuracy, milk allergy patients’ outcomes before milk oral immunotherapy treatment (Milk-OIT) is administered, using the company’s novel milk allergy diagnostic assay.  
 
December 3, 2018
Faecal calprotectin has a prognostic role for disease course in Crohn's disease and studies have suggested a revision of guidelines to incorporate it as a treatment target
The diagnosis of Crohn’s disease (CD) does not rely on a single gold standard but requires the integration of clinical data with endoscopic, histologic, radiological and biochemical investigations.1
 
December 3, 2018
The study recommends active surveillance to prevent over-treatment, suggesting that 36% of patients with a new diagnosis are candidates for active surveillance, 30% of whom will ultimately have treatment for progression
A new study has confirmed the effectiveness of Prostate-specific Antigen (PSA) screening in reducing prostate cancer mortality.
 
The retrospective cohort study of over 400,000 men, as published in Elsevier’s Urology® journal,1 set out to re-examine the value of PSA screening, to determine the optimal screening interval and the appropriate age groups to be screened. 
 
December 3, 2018
The study explored how different exposures during pregnancy, birth or childhood modulate asthma-related immune responses in children
The prevalence of allergic diseases has increased significantly over the last decades, creating substantial financial and societal burdens. Due to this, researchers are trying to discover new approaches to the prevention and treatment of these diseases. 
 
A new PhD thesis from the University of Eastern Finland shows that there is a link between immune responses and diverse early life exposures, such as obstetric factors, farm dust and air pollution. Some changes in immune responses are visible up until adolescence.
December 3, 2018
An international research team from Italy and France has now uncovered a new molecular player in the development of gluten intolerance
Coeliac disease is a severe autoimmune disorder of the intestine. It occurs when people develop sensitivity to gluten, a substance found in wheat, rye, and barley. An international research team from Italy and France has now uncovered a new molecular player in the development of gluten intolerance.
 
Their discovery, published in The EMBO Journal, suggests potential targets for the development of therapeutic approaches for the disease.
 
December 1, 2018
An international research team has discovered that the parvalbumin protein that usually triggers allergy is much less allergenic in cartilaginous fish than in bony fish
Fish allergy is one of the most dangerous food allergies, as it is often associated with potentially life-threatening symptoms such as anaphylactic shock.
 
October 30, 2018
Interviews were conducted to characterise two healthcare practitioners’ adoption of peripherally inserted central catheters into their clinical practices and the resulting clinical and economic benefits associated with their use

Disclaimer

This case study reflects the individual experiences of two healthcare practitioners and does not represent a scientific study or present clinical evidence. Results for other clinicians or institutions will vary. Please consult manufacturer’s instructions for use for relevant warnings, indications, and counterindications.
 

Disclosure

October 22, 2018
Support for the concept that drugs used for breast cancer in women can also work in men

There is growing evidence that drugs approved for the treatment of breast cancer in women are also effective and well tolerated in men, according to the largest real-life study yet to investigate treatment and outcomes in men with breast cancer1 and two further studies reported at ESMO 2018.2,3

October 22, 2018
Promising data for the use of biomarker-guided neoadjuvant EGFR-TKI treatment strategies in stage IIIA-N2 non-small cell lung cancer presented at ESMO 2018 Congress

Neoadjuvant erlotinib benefits selected epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-mutated patients who undergo complete resection of stage IIIA-N2 stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), shows a randomised study comparing erlotinib with gemcitabine plus cisplatin as neoadjuvant treatment, presented at the ESMO 2018 Congress in Munich.1

October 22, 2018
Immunotherapy with nivolumab and low-dose ipilimumab could become a new first line treatment in patients with some metastatic colorectal cancers following late-breaking results from the CheckMate-142 trial reported at the ESMO 2018 Congress

Immunotherapy with nivolumab and low-dose ipilimumab could become a new first line treatment in patients with some metastatic colorectal cancers following late-breaking results from the CheckMate-142 trial reported at the ESMO 2018 Congress in Munich.1

The drug combination shrank tumours and had beneficial effects on survival in patients with microsatellite instabiliy (MSI)-high metastatic colorectal cancer.