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June 30, 2009
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Reference Ranges for Umbilical Cord Blood Hematological Values
from Laboratory Medicine
Umbilical Cord Blood is a major source of hematopoietic stem cells. Although there are numerous publications dealing with its efficacy for hematopoietic transplantations, very little is known concerning reference ranges for its hematological values. We herein propose reference ranges for UCB hematological values, using a very large sample of UCB units from all over Greece. These values could be used as norms for UCB hematological analyses, since no such values are available so far. More    E-mail article

Beckman Coulter

Immucor: FDA Could Pull Manufacturing License
from The Associated Press via Forbes
Immucor Inc., which makes products used in blood transfusions, said the Food and Drug Administration intends to revoke the company's biologics manufacturing license, citing a January inspection. The notice is based on a January FDA inspection, though the company said it has been working "diligently" to improve its manufacturing processes. No products are being recalled as a result of the notice. More    E-mail article

Contrast-Induced Nephropathy Linked to Long-Term Adverse Events
from Medscape Medical News
Contrast-induced nephropathy is linked to long-term adverse events, according to the results of a study reported in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. In a randomized, double-blind trial comparing iopamidol vs iodixanol as prevention strategies for CIN, long-term follow-up was available for 294 participants. More    E-mail article

U.S. Passes Million Swine Flu Cases, Officials Say
from The New York Times
Swine flu has infected more than a million Americans, federal health officials said, and is infecting thousands more every week even though the annual flu season is well over. That total of those who have already been infected is “just a ballpark figure,” said Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of respiratory diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adding, "We know we're not tracking every single one of them." More    E-mail article

First Evidence That Female Human Embryos Adjust the Balance of X
from Science Daily
Dutch researchers have found the first evidence that a process of inactivating the X chromosome during embryo development and implantation, which was known to occur in mice but unknown in humans, does, in fact, take place in human female embryos prior to implantation in the womb. More    E-mail article


Impact of Reporting Gram Stain Results From Blood Culture Bottles on the Selection of Antimicrobial Agents
from American Journal of Clinical Pathology
We assessed the usefulness of reporting direct blood Gram stain results compared with the results of positive blood cultures in 482 episodes and monitored impact on selection of antimicrobial treatment. We found that the reporting groups “Staphylococcus spp,” “Pseudomonas spp and related organisms,” and “yeasts” identified in this way matched perfectly with later culture identification. When the report indicated Staphylococcus spp or Pseudomonas spp and related organisms, physicians started or changed antimicrobials suitable for these bacteria more frequently than when “other streptococci” and “family Enterobacteriaceae” were reported. Subscription required.    E-mail article

Scientists Kill Cancer Cells with "Trojan Horse"
from Reuters
Australian scientists have developed a "trojan horse" therapy to combat cancer, using a bacterially-derived nano cell to penetrate and disarm the cancer cell before a second nano cell kills it with chemotherapy drugs. The "trojan horse" therapy has the potential to directly target cancer cells with chemotherapy, rather than the current treatment that sees chemotherapy drugs injected into a cancer patient and attacking both cancer and healthy cells. More    E-mail article

Urine Test to Assess Lung Cancer Risk
from Oncology Nursing News
A simple test for a metabolite in urine could help researchers understand why some smokers will develop lung cancer and others will not, reported researchers at the 2009 AACR Annual Meeting. Although the metabolite NNAL has been shown to induce lung cancer in laboratory animals, its effect in humans has not yet been studied. Nevertheless, Jian-Min Yuan, PhD, MD, an associate professor of public health at the University of Minnesota, and colleagues hypothesized that the presence of this metabolite in urine might predict lung cancer risk. More    E-mail article

Second Gene Linked to Familial Testicular Cancer
from Science Daily
Specific variations or mutations in a particular can gene raise a man's risk of familial, or inherited, testicular germ-cell cancer, the most common form of this disease, according to new research by scientists at the National Institutes of Health. This is only the second gene to be identified that affects the risk of familial testicular cancer, and the first gene in a key biochemical pathway. More    E-mail article

Stem Cell Factor Indicative of Asthma Severity
from Reuters via Medscape Medical News
In asthmatics, peripheral blood levels of stem cell factor, a pleiotropic cytokine, and its soluble receptor c-kit, are related to disease severity, Polish researchers report in a June 1st paper in BMC Pulmonary Medicine. "The levels of SCF are elevated in patients with asthma and correlate with asthma severity," lead investigator Dr. Joanna Makowska told Reuters Health. "Furthermore it seems that physiological downregulation of this cytokine by soluble c-kit receptor is also impaired." More    E-mail article

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