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We wanted you to be aware that the FDA has granted accelerated approval of IBRANCE® (palbociclib) for the treatment of postmenopausal women with ER+/HER2- advanced breast cancer. Click here to see the press release!
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Leveraging social technologies as healthcare business solutions
By Christina Thielst
Last year, a highly respectable group of individuals representing a diverse group of healthcare organizations contributed to a book published by HIMSS — "Applying Social Media Technologies in Healthcare Environments." The contributors represented large healthcare systems, statewide public health departments, community hospitals, clinics, physicians, researchers and a patient. However, the stories of innovation using social technologies to solve business challenges will also be appreciated by nontechies alike.
Mobile application testing a challenge in healthcare
When it comes to mobile applications, the testing period is one of the most crucial. Launching an app that is not complete or filled with bugs is the fastest ways to ruin the reputation of an app and the company behind it. However, there is a difference between testing a game and testing a healthcare app.
ACCOUNTABLE CARE ORGANIZATIONS
Growth and dispersion of ACOs in 2015
Health Affairs Blog
In January, an additional 89 provider organizations joined the Medicare Shared Savings Program as accountable care organizations. While this year’s new entrants are a smaller cohort than those that joined in 2013 and 2014, they represent a continuation of the expansion of the accountable care movement.
FDA: NEW TREATMENTS & TECHNOLOGY
FDA offers guidance on developing opioids less prone to be abused
The Wall Street Journal
The Food and Drug Administration issued a set of suggestions to help the drug industry develop new opioid painkillers that potentially would be less susceptible to abuse than current pills.
The federal agency said in its guidance document that it hopes to encourage painkiller formulations that are more difficult to crush, inject or snort to produce a more intense high.
BioFeedback for immunoglobulin is a health outcomes reporting program that provides clinical feedback on the use of immunoglobulin in autoimmune-related disorders. Physicians and medical directors can now deploy clinical interventions when they have the greatest impact on healthcare quality and costs.
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ALS patients press FDA for quick access to controversial biotech drug
The Washington Post
For people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which attacks the body’s motor neurons and renders a person unable to move, swallow or breathe, the search for an effective treatment has been a crushing disappointment. The only drug available for the disease, approved two decades ago, typically extends life just a few months.
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Team develops method to better identify genes involved in diseases
Scientists at A*STAR's Genome Institute of Singapore have developed a new technique that simplifies the task of identifying the precise DNA mutations that cause disease, which lays the groundwork for the development of new drugs and new ways of diagnosing diseases.
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Scientists identify small RNA molecule that can suppress cancer-causing genes in GBM
Northwestern Medicine scientists have identified a small RNA molecule called miR-182 that can suppress cancer-causing genes in mice with glioblastoma mulitforme, a deadly and incurable type of brain tumor.
While standard chemotherapy drugs damage DNA to stop cancer cells from reproducing, the new method stops the source that creates those cancer cells: Genes that are overexpressing certain proteins.
Researchers find key step in understanding genetic mechanism of plants' environmental adaptability
A fundamental question pursued by plant scientists worldwide for the past decade has been answered by researchers led by the University of Sydney in Australia.
"Our findings have major implications for our understanding of how plants adapt to the environment. What's more, they indicate that similar processes occur in humans so the findings should be embraced by medical researchers and agricultural scientists alike," said Dr. Rodrigo Reis, lead author of the findings published in Nature Plants.
Pulling the strings of our genetic puppetmasters: Engineers gain control of gene activity
Duke researchers have developed a new method to precisely control when genes are turned on and active. The new technology allows researchers to turn on specific gene promoters and enhancers — pieces of the genome that control gene activity — by chemically manipulating proteins that package DNA. This web of biomolecules that supports and controls gene activity is known as the epigenome.
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Want to live longer? Optimal amount of exercise revealed
Doing a few hours of exercise every week will probably help you live longer, but doing a whole lot more exercise doesn't provide much extra benefit, according to a new study on physical activity and longevity. Still, doing as much as 10 times the recommended amount of exercise was not linked with an increased risk of dying during the study period. That's good news for marathon runners and triathletes who may have been concerned about the long-term health effects of such high levels of activity.
Experts: Remove financial barriers to organ donation
Taking the financial burden of organ donation off the shoulders of donors and their families is not only more fair, but it might also lead to more organs for transplant, experts say — and they urge Americans to find ethical ways to get rid of financial “disincentives” to organ donation.
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Study: Regularly drinking coffee may reduce skin cancer risk
If you haven’t already, it’s time to wake up and smell the health benefits of regularly drinking coffee. Scientists reckon that habitual coffee drinkers are at a reduced risk of coronary heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, liver cancer and dementia. Indulging in the caffeinated brew often can even boost your long-term memory. We’ll drink to that.
Rise in skin cancer may be linked to cheap vacation packages
The Huffington Post
Adults older than 65 are seven times more likely to develop skin cancer than they were about 40 years ago.
According to new figures released by Cancer Research U.K., approximately 5,700 retirees in Great Britain are diagnosed malignant melanoma each year, compared to 600 in the mid 1970s.
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Patients with mental illness no better off under Obamacare
U.S. News & World Report
Under President Barack Obama's healthcare law, which aimed to end health insurance discrimination for mental health services, an estimated 62 million patients now have better coverage. But a new report from the National Alliance on Mental Illness shows the policies still have a long way to go before they can make a difference in the lives of people living with mental illness.
Improving mental health via social network
Even if you have good coverage, it can be hard to find a mental health provider. And as Jenny Gold just mentioned, a lot of people are still held back from seeking help because of the stigma. Robert Morris thinks social media can help. He created a social networking app called Panoply. Panoply engages a group of patients in cognitive behavioral therapy. It's essentially a way to reframe thoughts and experiences.
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