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PHARM NEWS: Pharmacy & Medical News

Recent studies and news reports about cutting edge research and new discoveries in the pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical sciences. Plus, the latest news about the profession of pharmacy, pharmacist's, and pharmacy education.

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Gene therapy aids youth's sight

A 18-year-old whose sight was failing has had his vision improved in a pioneering operation carried out by doctors at Moorfields Eye Hospital....Read More

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FDA Faulted for Approving Studies of Artificial Blood

A new analysis concludes that the Food and Drug Administration approved experiments with artificial blood substitutes even after studies showed that the controversial products posed a clear risk of causing heart attacks and death. ...Read More

Nanoimpeller releases anticancer drugs inside of cancer cells

Researchers from the Nano Machine Center at the California NanoSystems Institute at UCLA have developed a novel type of nanomachine that can capture and store anticancer drugs inside tiny pores and release them into cancer cells in response to light....Read More

Cardiotoxicity of Antitumor Drugs

Many antitumor drugs cause “on treatment” cardiotoxicity or introduce a measurable risk of delayed cardiovascular events....Read More

IP Profile: Identification of Normal VS Potentially Precancerous Prostate Lesions

Our study with fifteen-Lipoxygenase type 1 (15-LO-1, ALOX15) gene suggests that we can distinguish precancerous lesions from benign lesions by assaying for a specific change in 15-LO-1 promoter DNA methylation status....Read More

Causes of disease can be revealed by metabolic fingerprinting

Your metabolic 'fingerprint' can reveal much about the possible causes of major diseases, according to the first 'metabolome-wide' association study ever carried out, published today in the journal Nature....Read More

Study Helps Explain Fundamental Process of Tumor Growth

Nearly 80 years ago, scientist Otto Warburg observed that cancer cells perform energy metabolism in a way that is different from normal adult cells. Many decades later, this observation was exploited by clinicians to better visualize tumors using PET (positron emission technology) imaging....Read More

Cell-Free Hemoglobin-Based Blood Substitutes and Risk of Myocardial Infarction and Death

The development of a blood substitute—an infusible liquid that eliminates the need for refrigeration and cross-matching, has a long shelf life, and reduces the risk of iatrogenic infection—would provide a potentially lifesaving option for surgical patients and trauma patients with hemorrhagic shock, especially in rural areas and military settings....Read More

Specialized white blood cells coordinate first responders to viral infection

Just as fire engines arrive quickly at the scene to save people and property, the cells that fight viruses have to reach the site of an infection promptly to mount a protective response....Read More

Tomatoes found to fight sun damage

Tomatoes could be the new weapon in the fight against sun damage to the skin, research at the Universities of Newcastle and Manchester has revealed....Read More

New Report Spells Out the Critical Health Risk in Adding Human Antibiotics to Animal Feed

The release of a new report by the Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production, spelling out the public health risk inherent in factory farming, heightens the urgency surrounding the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act (PAMTA)....Read More

Immune System Kick-Started in Moist Nasal Lining in Sinusitis, Asthma, and Colds

Scientists at Johns Hopkins have outlined a new path for potential therapies to combat inflammation associated with sinusitis and asthma based on a new understanding of the body’s earliest immune response in the nose and sinus cavities....Read More

Folate Scores Another Win in Animal Studies: Brief, High Doses of Vitamin B Blunt Damage from Heart Attack

In a new study, an international team of heart experts at  Johns Hopkins and elsewhere report that rats fed 10 milligrams daily of folate, also known as folic acid or vitamin B9, for a week prior to heart attack had smaller infarcts than rats who took no supplements....Read More

Improved outcomes from the administration of progesterone for patients with acute severe traumatic brain injury

Severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) has been increasing with greater incidence of injuries from traffic or sporting accidents. Although there are a number of animal models of TBI using progesterone for head injury, the effects of progesterone on neurologic outcome of acute TBI patients remain unclear....Read More

Fast-Food Liver Damage Can be Reversed

A recent study from Europe showed that eating too much fast food - a diet high in fat and sugar - could cause serious damage to your liver....Read More

Scientists find a quicker way to make antibodies

A new process to extract and copy the essential elements of cells that make human antibodies has provided a shortcut to making targeted, infection-fighting proteins known as monoclonal antibodies....Read More is a website for the profession of pharmacy with news, information, resources and continuing education for Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians. We also welcome other health professionals and pharmaceutical industry researchers. ...Read More

Biomarker Predicts Malignancy Potential of HG-PIN Lesions in the Prostate

The Spanish team found that expression of the PTOV1 gene in HG-PIN lesions is linked to prostate cancer development, and that the higher the expression, the more likely it is that subsequent biopsies will find cancer....Read More

Drugs in the Pipeline: New Therapies that Could Change Treatment Strategies

Studies presented at the 2008 Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research....Read More

APhA Urges Congress To Enact Legislation Ensuring Prompt Payment To Pharmacists

The American Pharmacists Association challenges a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers study on the potential impact of requiring Medicare Part D plans to pay pharmacies on a timely basis....Read More

Record Number of Pharmacy Graduates to Enter Pharmacy Residencies

Joint Commission Alert Targets Pediatric Medication Errors

The Joint Commission issued a Sentinel Event Alert on Friday about errors with medications specifically made for adults but administered to children in health care facilities, saying the errors are putting young patients at greater risk....Read More

ASHP, South Carolina Affiliate Oppose South Carolina Pharmacy Technician Legislation

A bill that would increase the pharmacy technician-to-pharmacist ratio in South Carolina does not serve the public interest, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) told members of the South Carolina Senate Medical Affairs Committee in a letter urging the committee to refer Senate Bill 1156 back to the Medical Affairs Subcommittee for further study....Read More

Patients Are Encouraged to Consult Healthcare Professionals Before Discontinuing Medications

The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) strongly encourages patients to stay informed about their medications and ask their pharmacist or prescriber about any questions or concerns they may have about their medications....Read More

Drug therapy may decrease risk of Parkinson's disease

Two case-control studies evaluating the use of statin therapy and antihypertensive therapies, respectively, and the risk of Parkinson's disease were published simultaneously in the April 15 issue of Neurology....Read More

Better Resources and Additional Funds Sought To Improve Foreign Drug Oversight

Congress is seeking funding for additional federal safety inspectors and for an increase in the policing of overseas suppliers. This moves comes after the influx of contaminated drugs, pet food and toothpaste from China....Read More

Dual Treatment of Incontinence and Dementia Associated with Functional Decline

Older nursing home residents who took medications for dementia and incontinence at the same time had a 50 percent faster decline in function than those who were being treated only for dementia....Read More

Researchers Make New Finding about How Memory is Stored

Researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine are the first to show that the location of protein-destroying “machines” in nerve cells in the brain may play an important role in how memories are formed – a finding with potential implications for treating Alzheimer’s and other brain diseases....Read More

APhA Announces Plans for Executive Leadership Transition

The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) announced today that it has been actively working on plans for an executive leadership transition....Read More

NACDS Testifies on Commitment to Safe Prescription Drug Supply Chain Before House Committee

Today the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) testified on prescription drug supply chain safety before the U.S. House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health at the hearing, titled, “Discussion Draft of the ‘Food and Drug Administration Globalization Act' Legislation: Drug Safety Provisions.” ...Read More

Researchers identify new cell targets for preventing growth of breast and other tumors

Researchers at the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have discovered new targets for cancer treatment aimed at blocking a key step in tumor progression. ...Read More

Actavis Totowa (formerly known as Amide Pharmaceutical, Inc.) recalls all lots of Bertek and UDL Laboratories Digitek? (digoxin tablets, USP) as precaution

Consumers were first cautioned March 27, 2008 not to purchase and to discontinue the use of "Total Body Formula" in Tropical Orange and Peach Nectar flavors and "Total Body Mega Formula" in the Orange/Tangerine flavor after receiving reports of adverse reactions....Read More

Tuberculosis and Infections with Enbrel? (etanercept)

Amgen Inc. and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals have added a BOXED WARNING to the ENBREL US Prescribing Information (US PI) to further strengthen and clarify information regarding the risk of infections...Read More

Users of Blood Glucose Meters Must Use Only the Test Strip Recommended For Use With Their Meter

Users of blood glucose meters should carefully read the Owner’s Manual and only use the test strips that are specified for that meter. As an additional check, the test strip inserts identify the blood glucose meters with which they should be used....Read More

FDA Completes Final Analysis of Total Body Formula and Total Body Mega Formula Products

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s final analysis of certain flavors of "Total Body Formula" and "Total Body Mega Formula” has detected hazardous amounts of chromium....Read More

Subsequent Risk of Hospitalization for Neuropsychiatric Disorders in Patients With Rheumatic Diseases

Individuals with rheumatic diseases had a higher risk of psychiatric disorders than the general population. Those with systemic lupus erythematosus and ankylosing spondylitishad a higher risk of subsequent psychiatric disorders than didpatients with rheumatoid arthritis....Read More

Low vitamin D boosts depression risk in seniors

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Older people with low blood levels of vitamin D and high blood levels of parathyroid hormone are more likely to be depressed, Dutch researchers report....Read More

Quarter of Disabled Seniors Use Risky Medications

Senior citizens with disabilities are twice as likely as their non-disabled counterparts to being taking at least one prescription drug deemed inappropriate for people 65 or older, according to new research. ...Read More

Novartis says Menveo improves meningitis immunity

Novartis AG's vaccine Menveo gave improved immunity against four types of meningitis in a late-stage trial when compared with Sanofi-Aventis SA's Menactra, the Swiss drugmaker said on Tuesday....Read More

U.S. hospital ERs overwhelmed, one-day study finds

The report from the House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee, released to coincide with a hearing on Monday, shows emergency rooms in Washington and Los Angeles operating over capacity on an ordinary day. None could have handled a surge of new patients....Read More

Smoking and Smoking Cessation in Relation to Mortality in Women

Smoking is associated with an increased risk of total and cause-specific death, but the rate of mortality risk reduction after quitting compared with continuing to smoke is uncertain. There is inadequate or insufficient evidence to infer the presence or absence of a causal relationship between smoking and ovarian cancer and colorectal cancer....Read More

AstraZeneca CEO touts preventative approach to health care

The American health-care system is in big trouble, David Brennan, chief executive officer of the pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca told a luncheon audience today in Boston....Read More

Genentech/Biogen Idec: Rituxan fails Phase II/III SLE trial

Rituxan, the blockbuster drug from Genentech and Biogen Idec, is the latest casualty in the systemic lupus erythematosus indication, reaffirming the complexity of this disease. In a Phase II/III trial, it was unable to demonstrate clinical efficacy in patients with SLE.
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NicOx Announces U.S. Phase 2a Results for PF-03187207 and Gives an Update on Continuing NO-prostaglandin Program

NicOx S.A. (Euronext Paris: COX) today announced the results of a U.S. phase 2 study, conducted by its partner Pfizer Inc, which compared the safety and efficacy of various doses of PF-03187207 to Xalatan(R) (latanoprost) 0.005% in patients with primary open-angle glaucoma and ocular hypertension. ...Read More

Target Reduces Costs on Pharmacy and Over-The-Counter Drug Offerings

As part of its ongoing commitment to provide exceptional value to guests and consistent with prior practices, Target (NYSE:TGT) will reduce prices on its prescription and over-the-counter drug offerings, remaining competitively priced with Wal*Mart....Read More

Teva seeks judgment on Astra\'s Nexium patents

AstraZeneca is confident in the strength of its patent protection regarding Nexium and will vigorously protect its intellectual property," the company said in a statement....Read More

A Community Pharmacist Speaks Out: What Med-Cal Cuts Passed Earlier This Year Means to My Patients?And the State of California

The 10% across the board Medi-Cal provider cuts that were passed almost unanimously by both Houses of the State Legislature and signed by the Governor spell doom for both patients and providers....Read More

Omnicare v. Prime Therapeutics

Arbitrator Rules that LTC Pharmacy has No BAE Obligation;  Awards $554,281 for Unpaid Co-pay Claims....Read More

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published an update to its 1996 Public Health Service Clinical Practice Guideline, Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence

With the release of these new guidelines, smokers can receive improved strategies from physicians and other health care providers to help successfully quit smoking....Read More

Wilson Health Information finds Independent Pharmacies Highest Rated in Customer Satisfaction

Wilson Health Information, a leading consumer insight firm, finds that for the eight year in a row, independent pharmacy customers rate their pharmacies highest in overall pharmacy customer satisfaction nationally according to the newly available 2008 WilsonRx® Pharmacy Satisfaction Survey....Read More

Washington Pharmacists May Refuse to Fill Plan Prescriptions B-For Now

A federal appeals court upheld Washington state pharmacists' right to refuse the "emergency contraceptive" Plan B on Thursday. According to Board of Pharmacy regulations, state pharmacies must supply patients will all legally prescribed drugs in a timely manner, including the potentially abortifacient Plan B....Read More

Plan offers a check on seniors\' drugs through a state program called ChecKmeds NC.

It's called the brown-bag approach: All the medications, vitamins and supplements an older person takes go into a paper bag and are carted off to a pharmacist or doctor to figure out....Read More

Roxane Laboratories, Inc. Announces the Launch of Acarbose Tablets

Roxane Laboratories, Inc. announced today the approval of their Abbreviated New Drug Application for Acarbose Tablets....Read More


Researchers from Boston University’s Slone Epidemiology Center have found that approximately one in ten U.S. children uses one or more cough and cold medications during a given week....Read More

Blocked Brain Enzyme Decreases Appetite and Promotes Weight Loss

Imagine being able to tone down appetite and promote weight loss, while improving the body's ability to handle blood sugar levels....Read More

Bone Marrow Treatments Helped Patients with MS

Patients who received bone marrow stem-cell transplants have reported remission of their disease, but Dr. Mark Freedman of the University of Ottawa is unable to explain why....Read More

TNFerade: Fight Against Cancer: Patient vs. Process: Why One Cancer Patient Is Fighting a Drug Company Working on a Cure

On this relatively good morning in the course of her mom's inoperable cancer, Jackie Loughman, of Indianapolis, knows some facts about pain that she wishes she didn't. ...Read More

Bill To Register Pharmacy Technicians Could Become Law In Florida

Florida would become the latest state to require the registration and training of pharmacy technicians thanks to legislation going before Gov. Charlie Crist to sign into law....Read More

Trying Times at the FDA? The Challenge of Ensuring the Safety of Imported Pharmaceuticals

In recent years, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has faced three serious challenges to its ability to ensure the safety of the country's medical devices and drugs. The first arose when the widely marketed drug Vioxx (rofecoxib) was shown to be dangerous enough for its manufacturer to withdraw it from the market....Read More

Medicare to tighten rules for private plans

Companies that sell Medicare Advantage plans would have to modify sales commissions to stop salesmen from switching beneficiaries to a new plan each year to earn the highest possible fee, a U.S. government agency proposed on Thursday....Read More

Summer Meeting Networking Session To Show Off Patient Safety Strategies, USA

Pharmacists who have significantly improved outcomes for patients will share their strategies during an interactive information session at ASHP's upcoming Summer Meeting, June 8-11 in Seattle....Read More

Model shows how mutation tips biochemistry to cause Alzheimer's

Your fate can be determined by tiny events. Imagine you live in the city and you walk everywhere to get exercise – you are healthy and not afraid of getting mugged....Read More

Link between cellular defense processes shows how cancer cells survive

St. Jude investigators have discovered that immune system cells that engulf and destroy germs in the body enlist help for this task from a common housekeeping mechanism most cells use to keep their interiors healthy....Read More

Prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus with angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors

ACE inhibitors have established their role in hypertension, primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular events, and prevention of progression to and worsening of renal function. However, their ability to preserve pancreatic function and prevent new-onset diabetes is also coming to the forefront....Read More

NicOx announces initiation of first phase 1 study of investigational nitric oxide-donating agent in hypertensive patients by Merck & Co., Inc.

Merck & Co., Inc. has initiated the first in a series of planned clinical studies, in mild to moderate hypertensive patients, under the companies' collaborative agreement to develop new nitric oxide-donating antihypertensive agents using NicOx' proprietary technology....Read More

This Pill Not To Be Taken With Competition: How Collusion Is Keeping Generic Drugs Off the Shelves

Getting health-care costs under control is a daunting and multifaceted challenge. But one simple approach could save consumers billions of dollars annually...Read More

Experts: Price spike should have raised alarm on heparin

The price of the Chinese-produced main ingredient used to make the bloodthinner heparin doubled last year, just four months before hundreds of American patients began having severe and sometimes fatal allergic reactionsto the medication, according to a report from an authoritative druginformation company in China....Read More

Merck Wins Reversal of Jury $32 Million Vioxx Award

Merck & Co., the third-largest U.S. drugmaker, won reversal of a $32 million jury award to a Texas family over the death of a former user of the company's withdrawn painkiller Vioxx....Read More

NicOx announces initiation of first phase 1 study of investigational nitric oxide-donating agent in hypertensive patients by Merck & Co., Inc.

Merck plans to conduct a number of clinical studies in hypertensive patients involving single and multiple ascending
dosing, prior to the selection of a compound to be advanced into phase 2....Read More

Testimony of Dennis Quaid Before the Committee on Oversight and Government

Actor Dennis Quaid testified to Congress that his family should be able to hold a drug company legally accountable for the near fatal overdose of his twin newborn children....Read More

Bayer pulls Trasylol supplies after study

Bayer AG is removing remaining supplies of its heart-surgery drug Trasylol from the U.S. market after a long-awaited study found it raised the risk of death....Read More

KANSAS CITY, Mo: Pharmacies Ramp Up Security After Robbery

Omnicare, which provides drugs to nursing homes, was robbed Sunday night. An Omnicare employee was attacked and robbed at gunpoint just as he was locking up the pharmacy....Read More

Care Crisis Looms for Aging Americans

Demographic data indicate that by 2030, 70 million Americans will be 65 years of age or older, a near doubling of the senior population in 2005. As the population ages, its need for health care services is expected to rise dramatically and reshape the nation's medical landscape....Read More

St. John\'s College of Pharmacy & Allied Health Professions and Tau Omega Chi Celebrate Toxicology Students Work at ToxExpo 2008

Sue Ford, Ph.D., Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, comments that “ToxExpo started as a two-hour poster session for undergraduate students in TOX 3406 to share their work with each other and to gain experience in communication of toxicological issues to the general public....Read More

Changing the scope of pharmacy: Student's study inspires UA to improve its pharmacy program

The advancement of pharmacy begins with the development of willing and able leaders to take the field to new heights. There is no way to bring pharmacy to the next level without such leaders...Read More

Walgreens announces $50,000 gift for UH Hilo College of Pharmacy

Walgreens recently gave a $50,000 unrestricted gift to the University of Hawaii at Hilo College of Pharmacy....Read More

Universally Applied Standards for Pharmacy Technicians

Most other health care professions require standard qualifications for personnel who assist in delivering health care. This helps create a framework for safely delivering care....Read More

Transparency is good medicine: Senate Bill 5917, requiring pharmaceutical companies to disclose their spending on marketing to physicians

As a state elected official, I have to disclose certain financial data to the Public Disclosure Commission. Lobbyists, too, disclose how much they spend to influence the legislative process. It makes sense that pharmaceutical companies disclose what they spend on lobbying physicians....Read More

Comparative Efficacy: What We Know, What We Need to Know, and How We Can Get There

In the past decade, the number of medications to treat osteoporosis has markedly increased. These drugs have distinct mechanisms of action. However, information on the efficacy of these compounds relative to one another remains limited, which frustrates physicians who want to practice according to the evidence....Read More

Vitamin D Protects Cells from Stress That Can Lead to Cancer

By inducing a specific gene to increase expression of a key enzyme, vitamin D protects healthy prostate cells from the damage and injuries that can lead to cancer, University of Rochester Medical Center researchers report....Read More

Avastin improves breast cancer survival

Roche Holding AG, the world's largest maker of cancer drugs, said on Monday that Avastin met its primary endpoint in a Phase III breast cancer trial....Read More

About 5,000 abstracts of studies published by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)

About 5,000 abstracts of studies published by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) may be found at this valuable online resource....Read More

Shingles vaccine recommended for elderly

People age 60 and older should be vaccinated against shingles, or herpes zoster, a painful condition, U.S. health officials said....Read More

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The American Pharmacists Association

APhA was the first-established national professional society of pharmacists, having been founded in 1852 as the American Pharmaceutical Association. It remains the largest association of pharmacists in the United States, boasting more than 60,000 practicing pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists, student pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and others interested in advancing the profession.  ...Read More

New Efforts to Help Improve Medical Products for Patient Safety and Quality of Medical Care

HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt today announced efforts underway at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) that will complement each other to improve patient safety and the quality of medical care....Read More

FDA Warns Consumers Against Using Mommy\'s Bliss Nipple Cream Product can be harmful to nursing infants

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers not to use or purchase Mommy's Bliss Nipple Cream, marketed by MOM Enterprises, Inc., because the product contains potentially harmful ingredients that may cause respiratory distress or vomiting and diarrhea in infants....Read More

Medicis Announces Voluntary Recall of Solodyn? (minocycline HCL, USP) 90 Mg Tablets, Extended Release; Lot Numbers B080037 and B080038 Due to Product Mix-Up

Medicis today announced that the Company is voluntarily recalling lot numbers B080037 (Exp: 12/09) and B080038 (Exp: 12/09) of the antibiotic SOLODYN® (minocycline HCl, USP) Extended Release Tablets, 90 mg, 30-count bottles (NDC 99207-461-30)....Read More

FDA Obtains Permanent Injunction Against Scientific Laboratories, Inc.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today announced that Scientific Laboratories Inc., and its president, Rajeshwari Patel, and chief executive officer, Amit Roy, have signed a Consent Decree of Permanent Injunction and are barred from manufacturing and distributing drug products until they bring their manufacturing operations into compliance with law and obtain approval for their products. ...Read More