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U.N. working to determine full scope of food crisis in South Sudan
28 Aug 2014 at 7:29am
By Carl Odera JUBA (Reuters) - Security concerns are preventing the United Nations gathering data from some areas of South Sudan to determine the full scope of a food crisis that could lead to full-blown famine by the end of the year, a World Food Programme (WFP) official said. A civil conflict that has rumbled on for more than eight months has already caused acute malnutrition in some regions and some of the formal criteria used to declare a famine zone have been reached, WFP Country Director Joyce Luma told Reuters. "The worst affected areas are the conflict areas. For now, she said the rainy season was adding to the challenge of reaching conflict areas because aid convoys had to contend with both security worries and often impassable tracks in a nation the size of France with almost no tarmac roads.
UN: Ebola cases could eventually reach 20,000
28 Aug 2014 at 7:15am
GENEVA (AP) ? The Ebola outbreak in West Africa eventually could exceed 20,000 cases, more than six times as many as are now known, the World Health Organization said Thursday.
West African states call for end to border closures over Ebola
28 Aug 2014 at 6:50am
West African states should re-open their borders and end flight bans put in place to halt the spread of Ebola, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) said on Thursday. The ECOWAS countries and airlines will make their own decisions on flight bans and borders, but the view of the main regional body, expressed at a meeting of ECOWAS health ministers in Ghana's capital, is likely to prove influential. "We must implement containment measures but we must not implement measures that will isolate or ostracise the affected countries," Ghana President John Mahama, who is also ECOWAS's current chairman, told the meeting. West African governments have implemented a patchwork of measures in a bid to stem the spread of the recent Ebola outbreak, which has killed more than 1,550 people.
German Green's ice bucket challenge lights up dope debate
28 Aug 2014 at 6:49am
A German Greens party leader has taken the "ice bucket" charity challenge to a new high, standing next to a marijuana plant while dousing himself with water in a tacit call for the legalization of cannabis. Cem Oezdemir is one of many public figures and ordinary citizens around the world to take the challenge - pouring a bucket of ice water over one's head to raise funds to fight Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). "Yes, it is a cannabis plant," Oezedmir told the Essen-based Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) after speculation about the plant gripped social media.
Amgen submits U.S. application to sell cholesterol-fighting drug
28 Aug 2014 at 6:46am
(Reuters) - Amgen Inc said it submitted an application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to market its cholesterol-lowering drug, evolocumab. The injectable drug works by blocking PCSK9, a naturally occurring protein that keeps "bad" LDL cholesterol levels elevated in the bloodstream. Other drugmakers, including Pfizer Inc, and a partnership between Regeneron Inc and Sanofi SA, are racing with Amgen to market potentially lucrative anti-PCSK9 antibodies. (Reporting by Natalie Grover in Bangalore; Editing by Maju Samuel)
FDA lifts partial hold on OncoMed's cancer drug trials
28 Aug 2014 at 6:41am
(Reuters) - OncoMed Pharmaceuticals Inc said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration lifted a partial hold on patient enrolments for three trials testing its experimental cancer drug, vantictumab. OncoMed had voluntarily halted enrollments on June 13 as a "precautionary measure", after reports that two of its drugs, vantictumab and ipafricept, were causing mild-to-moderate bone-related side effects. On the same day, the FDA formally placed a partial hold on vantictumab, which is being tested in combination with standard-of-care chemotherapy in three studies in patients with forms of advanced lung, breast and pancreatic cancer.
FDA says Johnson & Johnson recalls some jaw implants
28 Aug 2014 at 6:14am
(Reuters) - Johnson & Johnson is recalling some lots of its implant used to correct defects of the jaw, following more than a dozen cases of injury. The device, used to correct birth or post-traumatic jaw defects by gradually lengthening the bone, is being recalled by JNJ unit DePuy Synthes as it may reverse after surgery.
US to begin safety testing Ebola vaccine next week
28 Aug 2014 at 6:14am
WASHINGTON (AP) ? Federal researchers next week will start testing humans with an experimental vaccine to prevent the deadly Ebola virus.
How Tango Lessons Changed This 91-Year-Old's Life
28 Aug 2014 at 5:16am
Tango, salsa, samba, rumba, bolero. All the Latin dances, bring crowds to the dance floor. But one stands apart, with star quality. TANGO! Just the name alone has a sound different from all the rest. And the music! The music! The music, wow! Brings emotion, that no other can compare. What is it about tango that makes your heart beat faster....
Stop the Snore: 5 Risk Factors That May Require You to Talk About Sleep Apnea...
28 Aug 2014 at 5:04am
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) -- a potentially life-threatening disease involving episodes of complete or partial airway obstruction during sleep -- is dangerously on the rise. The disease afflicts at least 25 million American adults, and most of them remain untreated, increasing their risk of cardiac disease, hypertension, Type 2 diabetes and...
Ebola vaccine trials being fast-tracked: researchers
28 Aug 2014 at 4:42am
Safety trials on an Ebola vaccine are being fast-tracked, meaning it could be given to healthy volunteers as early as September, researchers said Thursday. The vaccine will be given to volunteers in Britain, the Gambia and Mali in a bid to tackle the spread of an epidemic which has spread across west Africa, killing 1,552 so far. The move was announced by pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline -- which is developing the vaccine with the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- and London-based medical charity Wellcome Trust, which is contributing to a grant to pay for the trials. "A candidate Ebola vaccine could be given to healthy volunteers in the UK, the Gambia and Mali as early as September, as part of a series of safety trials of potential vaccines," the statement said.
Doctor dies of Ebola in Nigeria's oil hub Port Harcourt
28 Aug 2014 at 4:23am
A doctor in Nigeria's oil industry hub of Port Harcourt has died from Ebola fever, after he was infected by man linked to the first case in Africa's most populous country, the Health Ministry said on Thursday. Heath Ministry spokesman Dan Nwomeh said on his Twitter feed that the doctor had treated a primary contact of Patrick Sawyer, the Liberian who brought Ebola to Lagos. His death brings the number of Ebola fatalities in Nigeria to 6. The total number of recorded cases had risen by two to 15, Nwomeh said, the other one being the wife of the doctor who is showing Ebola symptoms and whose test results are awaited.
Ebola vaccine from GSK fast-tracked into clinical trials
28 Aug 2014 at 4:12am
By Ben Hirschler and Sharon Begley LONDON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - An experimental Ebola vaccine from GlaxoSmithKline is being fast-tracked into human studies and the company plans to build a stockpile of up to 10,000 doses for emergency deployment, if results are good. GSK's candidate vaccine, being co-developed with the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), is expected to be given to healthy volunteers in Britain and the United States from about mid-September, with the program then being extended to Gambia and Mali. The NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is also working on a wider program of clinical trials, including tests of a version of the GSK vaccine that may fight a second strain of Ebola, as well as the West African one.
WHO says Ebola outbreak could strike 20,000 people
28 Aug 2014 at 3:20am
By Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA (Reuters) - The current Ebola outbreak in West Africa could infect more than 20,000 people, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Thursday in a bleak assessment of the deadly disease. The United Nations health agency issued a strategic plan to combat the oubreak in four West African nations where it said the actual number of cases could already be two to four times higher than the reported 3,069. It acknowledges that the aggregate case load of Ebola Virus Disease could exceed 20,000 over the course of this emergency," the WHO said. "Response activities must be adapted in areas of very intense transmission and particular attention must be given to stopping transmission in capital cities and major ports, thereby facilitating the larger response and relief effort," the WHO said.
Ebola toll tops 1,550, outbreak accelerates: WHO
28 Aug 2014 at 3:07am
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has killed more than 1,552 people out of 3,069 known cases in four countries and "continues to accelerate", the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Thursday. The epidemic in the region, the deadliest since the disease was first discovered in 1976, has killed nearly as many people as all the previous known outbreaks combined.