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Novo Nordisk drops inflammation business to focus on diabetes
2 Sep 2014 at 6:02am
By Stine Jacobsen COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk has stopped research and development activities in inflammatory disorders to concentrate on the prevention and treatment of diabetes, its biggest business. Chief Science Officer Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen said with the setback for anti-IL-20, the earliest possible entrance into the market for anti-inflammatory therapeutics would have been in the late 2020s. Instead, the company aimed to increase its research and development within its core diabetes business. "Significant un-met opportunities remain within diabetes, including prevention, obesity and diabetes complications," Thomsen said in a statement.
Exclusive: 'Back to normal' for AstraZeneca CEO, despite Pfizer rumors
2 Sep 2014 at 5:59am
By Ben Hirschler BARCELONA (Reuters) - Though speculation is rife of a new Pfizer bid, AstraZeneca's chief executive is not holed up with advisers in London or New York. Instead, he has spent the last three days immersed in heart science in Barcelona. "The only thing I can tell you is I am here - and imagine where I would be if something was happening!" Pascal Soriot told Reuters on the sidelines of the European Society of Cardiology congress, the world's largest heart meeting. Strict British takeover rules limit what Soriot and other players can say about Pfizer's abortive attempt to buy AstraZeneca and the possibility of a resumption of talks.
Death toll from Congo Ebola outbreak rises to 31
2 Sep 2014 at 5:05am
KINSHASA (Reuters) - The death toll from an outbreak of the Ebola virus in the Djera region of northern Democratic Republic of Congo has risen to 31, Minister of Health Felix Kabange Numbi told Reuters on Tuesday. The outbreak in Congo's Equateur province is thought to be separate from an epidemic in the West African nations of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia that has killed more than 1,550 people since March.
Ebola kills 31 people in DR Congo: WHO
2 Sep 2014 at 4:14am
An outbreak of the Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo has killed 31 people and the epidemic remains contained in a remote northwestern region, UN the World Health Organization (WHO) said Tuesday. "There are now 31 deaths," Eugene Kambambi, the WHO's head of communication in DR Congo, told AFP, citing Congolese authorities and stressing that the epidemic "remains contained" in an area around 800 kilometres (500 miles) north of the capital Kinshasa. Health officials had previously given a death toll of 13 people from the lethal haemorrhagic fever since August 11 around the isolated town of Boende, surrounded by dense tropical forest in Equateur province. Kabambi was speaking by telephone from Mbandaka, the provincial capital, where he was accompanied by Health Minister Felix Kabange Numbi and the WHO representative in DRC, Joseph Cabore.
Ebola threatens food security in West Africa: FAO
2 Sep 2014 at 2:43am
The world's worst Ebola epidemic has put harvests at risk and sent food prices soaring in West Africa, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said on Tuesday, warning the problem would intensify in coming months. The FAO issued a special alert for Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, the three countries most affected by the outbreak, which has killed around 1,550 people since the virus was detected in the remote jungles of southeastern Guinea in March. Restrictions on people's movements and the establishment of quarantine zones to contain the spread of the hemorrhagic fever has led to panic buying, food shortages and price hikes in countries ill-prepared to absorb the shock. "Even prior to the Ebola outbreak, households in some of the most affected areas were spending up to 80 percent of their incomes on food," said Vincent Martin, head of an FAO unit in Dakar which is coordinating the agency's response.
Defeat of California initiative would protect insurers' profits
2 Sep 2014 at 2:00am
Proposition 45 would allow California's insurance chief to block insurance rate hikes; insurers are spending millions to kill it.
Dengue fever strikes models in Japan
2 Sep 2014 at 1:36am
A worsening outbreak of dengue fever in Japan has claimed its first celebrities -- two young models sent on assignment to the Tokyo park believed to be its source. The details emerged as the government said Tuesday that at least 34 people have now caught the disease, which has not been seen in Japan for seven decades apart from cases contracted overseas. The two women -- Saaya, 20, and Eri Aoki, 25 -- were sent to Yoyogi Park last month for the Saturday variety show on which they appear, the Nikkan Sports said. The revelation that the two beauties had succumbed to the mosquito-borne disease provided fodder for the self-referencing TV shows that fill daytime schedules in celebrity-obsessed Japan.
South Korea lifts ban on beef with feed additive: food ministry
2 Sep 2014 at 12:27am
By Meeyoung Cho SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea has lifted a ban on the use of animal feed additive zilpaterol in beef, opening the door to imports containing the growth enhancer as well as domestic sales of the product. Seoul said last October that it intended to ease its zero-tolerance policy on zilpaterol-based drugs, such as Merck & Co Inc's Zilmax, after a risk assessment found it could be permitted at certain levels. South Korea last year suspended some U.S. An official at South Korea's food ministry confirmed on Tuesday that imports of beef muscle with 1 part per billion (ppb) of zilpaterol, 5 ppb in beef liver and 10 ppb in beef kidney had been approved as of late last month.
Nigeria records another Ebola case in oil city, 17 cases total
1 Sep 2014 at 11:58pm
Nigeria has a third confirmed case of Ebola in the oil hub of Port Harcourt, bringing the country's total confirmed infections to 17, with 271 people under surveillance, the health minister said on Monday. A doctor in Port Harcourt died last week after treating someone who came in contact of the Liberian-American man who was the first recorded case of the virus in Africa's most populous country. Patrick Sawyer, the first case, came from Liberia, and then collapsed at Lagos airport on July 20. The shift to Port Harcourt shows how easily containment efforts can be undermined.
Poor response to Ebola causing needless deaths: World Bank head
1 Sep 2014 at 11:48pm
By Daniel Flynn and Tim Cocks DAKAR/LAGOS (Reuters) - The world's "disastrously inadequate response" to West Africa's Ebola outbreak means many people are dying needlessly, the head of the World Bank said on Monday, as Nigeria confirmed another case of the virus. In a newspaper editorial, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said Western healthcare facilities would easily be able to contain the disease, and urged wealthy nations to share the knowledge and resources to help African countries tackle it. "Many are dying needlessly," read the editorial, co-written by Harvard University professor Paul Farmer, with whom Kim founded Partners In Health, a charity that works for better healthcare in poorer countries. In a vivid sign of the danger posed by inadequate health provision, a man escaped from an Ebola quarantine centre in Monrovia on Monday and sent people fleeing in fear as he walked through a market in search of food, a Reuters witness said.
China poultry farm hit in new outbreak of H5N6 bird flu
1 Sep 2014 at 6:02pm
Nearly 18,000 geese died on a poultry farm in northeast China after being stricken by the H5N6 bird flu virus last month, the agriculture ministry said. As many as 20,550 geese on the farm in Harbin, the capital of Heilongjiang province, showed symptoms of avian flu and 17,790 birds died, the ministry said on its website on Monday. The ministry sealed off and sterilized the infected area, besides culling and safely disposing of almost 69,000 geese, it added. The National Avian Influenza Reference Laboratory confirmed that the geese had the H5N6 virus.
16 Simple Things I Do Daily
1 Sep 2014 at 5:05pm
In no order, I do the following 16 simple things daily to improve my physical and mental health:1. Walk 10k steps. 2. Drink from a water fountain every time I see one.3. 100 sit ups. 4. Take stairs instead of elevator/escalator/moving walkway. 5. Take nutritional supplements, multivitamins and calcium. 6. Eat at least 60g of protein. ...
Nurses go on strike in Ebola-hit Liberia
1 Sep 2014 at 3:51pm
Nurses at Liberia's largest hospital went on strike on Monday, demanding better pay and equipment to protect them against a deadly Ebola epidemic which has killed hundreds in the west African nation. John Tugbeh, spokesman for the strikers at Monrovia's John F Kennedy hospital, said the nurses would not return to work until they are supplied with "personal protective equipment (PPEs)", the hazmat-style suits which guard against infectious diseases. "From the beginning of the Ebola outbreak we have not had any protective equipment to work with. The Ebola virus, transmitted through contact with infected bodily fluids, has killed more than 1,500 people in four countries since the start of the year -- almost 700 of them in Liberia.
The Power of Aromas
1 Sep 2014 at 3:25pm
Walk through any mall in America and you might suddenly be enticed by the smell of cinnamon buns or coffee. Sell your home and often you are advised by your realtor to bake bread or cookies to encourage prospective buyers. Smells are more influential then you may realize. In these two incidents smells are used to elicit sales. They are there to...
Low-carb diets may beat low-fat options for weight loss, heart health
1 Sep 2014 at 3:08pm
By Andrew M. Seaman A low-carbohydrate diet is better for losing weight and may also be better for lowering the risk of heart disease than a low-fat diet, according to a new study. While low-carb diets have outperformed other diets when it comes to weight loss, some researchers feared they might be worse for heart health because they tend to be high in fat. The new study shows that with proper nutritional counseling, people can lose more weight and lower their risk factors for heart disease on a low-carbohydrate diet, said the lead author, Dr. Lydia Bazzano of Tulane University in New Orleans. "This study shows if you are overweight and have cardiovascular disease risk factors and haven't had success on other diets, certainly a low-carbohydrate diet is worth a try," said Bazzano.