Achillion Pharmaceuticals Announces Phase 2A Clinical Trial Results

Achillion Pharmaceuticals has announced top-line results from its on-going phase 2a clinical trial of ACH-1625, demonstrating that 75-81 percent of hepatitis C patients receiving ACH-1625 achieved rapid virologic response (RVR) with a promising safety and tolerability profile.

All patients receiving four weeks of treatment with ACH-1625 demonstrated continuous and substantial declines in HCV RNA with no viral breakthrough during therapy at any of the doses.

Achillion focuses on solutions against infectious disease including hepatitis C and resistant bacterial infections.

“These data reflect a positive outcome with high RVR, irrespective of IL28B status, which places ACH-1625 among the most potent protease inhibitors in development,” Elizabeth A. Olek, M.D., vice president and chief medical officer of Achillion stated in a news release.

For more complete information see: http://www.favstocks.com/achillion-pharmaceuticals-achn-reports-positive-phase-2a-clinical-results-for-hepatitis-c-treatment/3039885/

This entry was posted on Thursday, March 31st, 2011 at 4:38 pm and is filed under News and Updates. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

Infectious Disease Specialist Talks About CRKP

Time recently published an interview with Dr. Robert Moellering, an infectious disease specialist at Harvard, about the emergence of carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae (CRKP), a “gram negative” type bacteria that is resistant to carbapenems, the so-called “antibiotic of last resort.”

Strains of CRKP, which contain enzymes that destroy the carbapenem, are often found with other bacteria that are already multidrug resistant.  Further complicating matters, CRKP contain genetic elements that can be transferred to those other bacteria.

Gram-negative bacteria present structural challenges – such as two outer membranes – that make them more difficult to treat with antibiotics.  Their structure also pumps out toxic substances, such as antibiotics.

Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2011/03/30/qa-with-a-superbug-expert-how-dangerous-is-crkp/#ixzz1I6iiCHoa

This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 30th, 2011 at 6:15 pm and is filed under News and Updates. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

European Universities Seek to Develop Stent that Delivers Drugs to Patient

In Europe, three universities are working together to develop a special coronary stent with a coating that releases drugs into the blood over a long duration.  The University of Greenwich, along with the Université Lille 1 and Université du Droit et de la Santé de Lille are developing the stent.

Stents — which are most frequently used after angioplasty, which widens a narrowed or obstructed blood vessel — are highly beneficial to heart patients, but can in some cases create post-operative complications.

The stent under development is intended to decrease complications while extending and improving patients’ lives. The stent has a plastic coating that can deliver multiple drugs directly into the blood stream to help reduce infections, inflammation and thrombosis, or clotting.

For more information: <a href=”http://mtbeurope.info/news/2011/1103038.htm”>http://mtbeurope.info/news/2011/1103038.htm</a>

Possible New Early Detection Test for Emphysema

<!– @font-face { font-family: “Times”; }@font-face { font-family: “Cambria”; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: “Times New Roman”; }a:link, span.MsoHyperlink { color: blue; text-decoration: underline; }a:visited, span.MsoHyperlinkFollowed { color: purple; text-decoration: underline; }p { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 10pt; font-family: “Times New Roman”; }span.ilad { }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } –>Scientists, in a major biomarker research breakthrough, reportedly have developed a simple and inexpensive blood test to help in the early detection of emphysema.  The blood test would provide doctors with a means to predict the disease before even the earliest symptoms emerge, facilitating patient lifestyle changes and early treatment.

Emphysema, usually the result of smoking, is a progressive ailment that impairs or destroys the air sac in the lungs, causing shortness of breath. The disorder occurs mostly because of smoking.  Researchers have been pursuing early diagnosis through the detection of levels of capillary debris in the bloodstream known as endothelial microparticles.

More information in an article here: <a href=”http://www.themedguru.com/20110313/newsfeature/simple-blood-test-detect-emphysema-early-horizon-86144010.html”>http://www.themedguru.com/20110313/newsfeature/simple-blood-test-detect-emphysema-early-horizon-86144010.html</a>

Gates, Friesner Extend Funding to Nimbus

<!– @font-face { font-family: “Times”; }@font-face { font-family: “Cambria”; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: “Times New Roman”; }a:link, span.MsoHyperlink { color: blue; text-decoration: underline; }a:visited, span.MsoHyperlinkFollowed { color: purple; text-decoration: underline; }p { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 10pt; font-family: “Times New Roman”; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } –>Bill Gates and Dr. Richard Friesner, co-founder of Schrödinger and Professor of Chemistry at Columbia University, and Atlas Venture, have extended seed round funding for Nimbus Discovery, LLC, a biopharmaceutical company that uses computational technology to discover novel medicines against difficult-to-drug disease targets.

According to an announcement, the funds will advance Nimbus’ lead programs in diffuse large B-cell <a href=”http://www.news-medical.net/health/What-is-Lymphoma.aspx”>lymphoma</a>, inflammatory disorders, and metabolic disease. Nimbus’ approach is to target proteins that are pivotal for disease progression including IRAK4, a signaling kinase that becomes inappropriately activated in <a href=”http://www.news-medical.net/health/What-is-Lymphoma.aspx”>lymphoma</a> and inflammation, and ACC, a metabolic enzyme that controls the synthesis and burning of fat.

More information available here: <a href=”http://www.news-medical.net/news/20110311/Bill-Gates-and-Schrodinger-co-founder-invest-in-Nimbus-to-advance-large-B-cell-lymphoma-programs.aspx”>http://www.news-medical.net/news/20110311/Bill-Gates-and-Schrodinger-co-founder-invest-in-Nimbus-to-advance-large-B-cell-lymphoma-programs.aspx</a>

Improved Algorithms Bring Researchers Closer to Identifying a Baby’s Risk for Autism

CNN’s “The Chart” blog recently reported that researchers at Children’s Hospital Boston have been able to correctly identify babies who were at higher risk for autism with 80 percent accuracy. Researchers used electroencephalograms (EEGs), a common tool for measuring brain activity, along with new, more sophisticated computer algorithms to analyze EEG results with more clarity than in the past.

Early detection and therapy for children with autism is key for improving language and behavioral skills and Children’s Hospital Boston researchers have been focused on finding autism “markers” in EEG reports before a child shows signs of the disorder.

Read more about the findings here: <a href=”http://pagingdrgupta.blogs.cnn.com/2011/02/22/brain-scans-may-someday-detect-autism/”>http://pagingdrgupta.blogs.cnn.com/2011/02/22/brain-scans-may-someday-detect-autism/</a>

New Catheter Improves Diagnosis of Heart Rhythm Irregularities

Researchers announced that a new technology can position electronics inside the heart to achieve superior diagnosis of irregularities in heart rhythm, according to the news service UPI.

The University of Illinois announced in a news release that scientists had successfully placed highly sensitive stretchable electronics technology using the minimally invasive standard endocardial balloon catheters — long, flexible tubes with balloons at the end that inflate and open blood vessels or valves.

The new catheter both maps the heart and ablates aberrant patches of cells that beat off rhythm, and can perform the functions over large areas of the heart.

Read more: <a href=”http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2011/03/07/Inflatable-weapon-targets-heart-disease/UPI-85021299543902/#ixzz1G18hTmVO”>http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2011/03/07/Inflatable-weapon-targets-heart-disease/UPI-85021299543902/#ixzz1G18hTmVO</a>

Laser Eye Surgery Increases Pool of Potential Pilots

A growing number of aspiring Air Force pilots whose nearsightedness would previously have prevented them from pilot training programs have been able to pursue their dreams of flight due to advances in laser surgery technology.

More pilot candidates are taking advantage of laser eye surgery following a recent decision by the Air Force to allow the surgery for more of its students.  In the past decade Air Force ophthalmologists have performed more than 70,000 laser eye surgeries, and recent advancements have enabled them not simply to correct flawed vision, but to get their airmen “the best vision humanly possible,” said Lt. Col. (Dr.) Charles Reilly, chairman of the ophthalmology department at Wilford Hall Medical Center in San Antonio.

The Air Force originally offered photorefractive keratectomy vision correction for a small number of qualified candidates, and steadily expanded the program, approving Lasik surgery for aviators and effectively increasing the pool of possible candidates for aviation training.

For more information: http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/2011/02/air-force-eye-surgery-widens-pilot-pool-022811w/

Gene Therapy a Possible Future Cure for AIDs?

In Germany several years ago an AIDs patient appeared to be “cured” after receiving a blood cells from a donor with what was described as “natural immunity” to HIV. The phenomenon prompted scientists to seek similar results for AIDs patients by using their own blood cells.

The Associated Press reports on a new AIDS study where scientists have used genetic engineering to develop blood cells that are resistant to HIV. It is too early in the study to determine whether this methodology is remotely effective in a cure, but it has shown scientists that the procedure may be “feasible” and “safe.” The study marks the very first time that scientists have “permanently deleted a human gene and infused the altered cells back into patients.”

More information about the study is here: <a href=”http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/02/28/ap/health/main20037400.shtml”>http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/02/28/ap/health/main20037400.shtml</a>

Laser Pointers and Damaging Effects on Teenagers’ Retinas

Eye doctors have noticed a growing trend of eye damage among teenagers who have played with high-powered green laser pointers. A recent article in the<em> New York Times </em>outlines the dangers of these high-power laser pointers and how easy they are to obtain online. Many laser pointers are 10 and 20 times higher than the FDA limits and “as power increases, eye damage may happen in a microsecond,” the agency says in its warnings.

More about the dangers of these high-powered laser pointers here:

<a href=”http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/01/health/01laser.html”>http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/01/health/01laser.html</a>