Body

Hospitals in states where Medicaid does not pay for routine male circumcision are only about half as likely to perform the procedure, and this disparity could lead to an increased risk of HIV infection among lower-income children later in life, according to a UCLA AIDS Institute study.

28 January 2009 -- Scientists in Sydney and Melbourne have produced results that could silence the current debate about exactly how fat molecules clog up muscle cells, making them less responsive to insulin.

The finding is an important milestone in understanding the mechanisms of obesity related insulin resistance, a precursor of Type 2 diabetes.

Ferumoxytol, a novel intravenous form of iron that permits rapid administration of large doses, has been shown to be effective for treating iron deficiency in chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients on dialysis, according to a clinical trial appearing in the February 2009 issue of the Clinical Journal of the American Society Nephrology (CJASN). The results indicate that this new agent may become an important treatment option for CKD patients.

A cow with a name produces more milk than one without, scientists at Newcastle University have found.

Drs Catherine Douglas and Peter Rowlinson have shown that by giving a cow a name and treating her as an individual, farmers can increase their annual milk yield by almost 500 pints.

The study, published online today in the academic journal Anthrozoos, found that on farms where each cow was called by her name the overall milk yield was higher than on farms where the cattle were herded as a group.

Transplant surgeons at Johns Hopkins have evidence that hospitals performing at least 20 lung transplant procedures a year, on average, have the best overall patient survival rates and lowest number of deaths from the complex surgery.

MADISON — As global warming raises concerns about potential spread of infectious diseases, a team of researchers has demonstrated a way to predict the expanding range of human disease vectors in a changing world.

A regular high-intensity, three-minute workout has a significant effect on the body's ability to process sugars. Research published in the open access journal BMC Endocrine Disorders shows that a brief but intense exercise session every couple of days may be the best way to cut the risk of diabetes.

The pain relieving effects of acupuncture compared with placebo are small and seem to lack clinical relevance, according to a study published on bmj.com today.

Researchers at the Nordic Cochrane Centre in Copenhagen analysed evidence from thirteen acupuncture pain trials involving over 3,000 patients. The trials compared three arms of treatment (real acupuncture, placebo or 'pretend' acupuncture or no acupuncture) for a broad range of common conditions such as knee osteoarthritis, migraine, low back pain and post-operative pain.

The information about breast screening sent to women in the United Kingdom has serious shortcomings and should not be used as a basis for informed consent, warn researchers in a paper published on bmj.com today.

Melanotan (an unlicensed medicine dubbed the "tan jab") can cause rapid changes in the appearance of moles, warn skin experts in this week's BMJ.

There are two types of Melanotan – Melanotan I and Melanotan II. They work by increasing the levels of melanin (the body's natural pigment that protects us from the sun) resulting in a suntan.

Melanotan has not been tested by the medicines regulator, but both products are being advertised and sold illegally as an injectable tan on the internet and in some tanning salons and body building gyms.

Plans by the European Commission to allow drug companies to give information on prescription drugs to the public is troubling for the future objective use and funding of medicines, warn medical students in a letter to this week's BMJ.

The students are representatives of Medsin, a student global health network, and Pharmaware, a UK campaign aiming to maximise ethical interactions between healthcare professionals and pharmaceutical companies.

Children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia with certain genetic variations can have a different response to anti-cancer treatment than other patients, according to a study in the January 28 issue of JAMA.

Pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) cure rates have increased from less than 10 percent in the 1960s to more than 80 percent today, although considerable unexplained individual variability exists in treatment response, according to background information in the article.

Despite recommendations and being at an increased risk of breast cancer, most young women who were treated with chest radiation for a childhood cancer do not undergo appropriate mammography screening, according to a study in the January 28 issue of JAMA.

Scientists from St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and the Children's Oncology Group (COG) have discovered in children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) scores of inherited genetic variations that clinicians might be able to use as guideposts for designing more effective chemotherapy for this cancer.

Larynx cancer patients treated with alternating cycles of chemotherapy and radiation have similar outcomes to patients treated with chemotherapy followed by radiation, according to data from a randomized controlled trial in the January 27 online issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.