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  • October 04, 2017
    As reported in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatology, the drug febuxostat reduced gout flares in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study of 314 adults with early gout. Febuxostat treatment also reduced synovitis—or inflammation of the joint lining detected by MRI scanning —over a 2-year period compared with placebo.Febuxostat treats high urate in the blood of patients with gout. “Current clinical practice guidelines do not recommend routine use of urate-lowering therapy for...
  • October 04, 2017
    A new analysis published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology indicates that ‘first-in-man’ clinical trial protocols in the Netherlands often lack a consistent consideration of pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic aspects in establishing drug doses.These measures of pharmacology are important for determining a safe first dose to be administered to humans.The analysis found that pharmacology endpoints were used more often in 2015 compared with 2007, but some trials still escalated...
  • October 04, 2017
    In recent years, there has been growing controversy surrounding the evolutionary effects of trophy hunting in big game animals worldwide. An article published in the Journal of Wildlife Management explains why the removal of males possessing large horns and antlers does not inevitably cause harmful artificial selection.James Heffelfinger, author of the article, notes that there are numerous obstacles that ameliorate, neutralize, or dilute the effects of hunter selection, making it very...
  • October 04, 2017
    A new assessment indicates that working remotely is a growing trend, and while it is associated with higher organisational commitment, job satisfaction, and job-related well-being, these benefits come at the cost of work intensification and a greater inability to switch off. The findings are published in New Technology, Work and Employment. “Work is gradually being detached from traditional places such as the office, factory, or shop. Our study also shows that employers benefit from...
  • October 02, 2017
    Traditional Chinese medicine is widely used as a form of complementary medicine all over the world for various indications and for improving general health. Proprietary Chinese medicines (pCMs)—which are composed solely of Chinese medicines and formulated in a finished dose form—are generally believed to be natural and safe, but a new analysis in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology reveals serious dangers. Various reports have documented the adulteration of pCMs and health...
  • September 28, 2017
    Natural organic compounds that contain fluorine are rare because living organisms—with a few exceptions—do not produce them. American scientists have now genetically engineered a microbial host for organofluorine metabolism, allowing it to produce a fluoridated intermediate known as a diketide. As reported in the journal Angewandte Chemie, the diketide could then be used as a monomer for the in vivo production of fluorinated bioplastics. Unlike nature, chemists use fluorine often...
  • September 27, 2017
    A new study published in Acta Paediatrica indicates that survival of babies born weighing ≤500 g is poor despite advances in neonatal care.The study included 104 babies born over 15 years in North East England and North Cumbria, in the UK, who were ≥22 weeks gestation and ≤500 grams (approximately 1.1 lb), of which 49 were admitted for intensive care. Overall one-year survival was 11%, but survival for those receiving intensive care was 22%. There was significant short-term morbidity in...
  • September 27, 2017
    Ten years post–Hurricane Katrina, experts have reflected on the aftermath through the eyes of addiction treatment professionals to become better prepared for future tragedies. Their Journal of Addictions & Offender Counseling study highlights the experiences of 11 professionals who worked in addiction treatment agencies in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Houston, Texas.  Participants described an overall increase in addiction disorders and especially in prescription drug addictions. They...
  • September 25, 2017
    In the midst of an intense hurricane season, a historical perspective published in WIREs Climate Change looks at adaptation to hurricanes in New Orleans over nearly three centuries, from its foundation in 1718 to Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The flooding of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina raised the question, how could such a disaster have happened in one of the most technologically advanced nations in the world? Looking into this question can shed light on how societies are dealing with such...
  • September 25, 2017
    Analyses of temperate rain forests located on the central coast of British Columbia, Canada suggest that for centuries, humans have intentionally used fire to manage plant-life. The findings are published in the Journal of Biogeography.When researchers reconstructed 700 years of temporal and spatial aspects of fire activity, they recorded 16 fires from 1376-1893. No fire activity was detected after 1893, coinciding with the relocation of indigenous groups from the study area."...