Clinical Research/R&D

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Malaria Parasite Uses Antibody Camouflage To Hide

Scientists from Rigshospitalet – Copenhagen University Hospital – and the University of Copenhagen have discovered malaria parasites use a type of antibody camouflage to hide from the immune system in the placentas of pregnant women, according to research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a University…

NIH Grants $70M Over Five Years To Help Search For HIV Cure

NIH announced on Monday it will provide $70 million over five years to three collaborations searching for an HIV/AIDS cure, making it “the largest single investment yet … into finding a way to rid the virus from the body or at least reduce levels to the point that infected people can stop taking anti-HIV drugs – which many researchers until recently viewed as a hopeless quest,” ScienceInsider reports (Cohen, 7/11).

EU Countries Should Pool Funding To Create ‘Prize’ For Bringing New Antibiotics To Market, Report Says

“European policy makers were urged Wednesday to find viable financial incentives to get drug companies to discover new antibiotics, because the lack of fresh supplies poses acute dangers to health care and efforts against infectious diseases,” according to a report by the Office of Health Economics and funded by GlaxoSmithKline, Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal reports.

Mass Administration Of Common Anti-Parasitic Is Possible New Tool In Fight Against Malaria

Ivermectin – an inexpensive, common medication already being used in Africa to treat roundworms that cause river blindness and parasites that cause elephantitis – could also be used to kill mosquitoes carrying malaria parasites, potentially “provid[ing] another useful weapon in the armory against a disease that kills around 800,000 a year, most of them small children and pregnant women,” the Guardian’s “Global Health Blog” reports (Boseley, 7/6).

Antibiotic Resistance Is Not A Priority In The U.S.

Author and journalist Maryn McKenna in her “Superbug” blog on Wired.com examines U.S. spending on drug-resistant pathogens, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). She examines data presented by Eli Perencevich of the University of Iowa and colleagues at the World HAI Forum, which looked at how much of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ budget went to the problem of drug-resistant diseases versus other infectious diseases. “They found the answer to be: Not very much,” she writes.

Drug Companies’ Desires To Maintain Status Quo Are ‘Lethal’

In the second of a two-part Al Jazeera opinion-piece series “examining the methods by which multinational drug corporations inflate their expenses and justify their pricing strategies,” Khadija Sharife, a journalist and visiting scholar at the Center for Civil Society, looks at U.S. tax laws, lax oversight of international clinical trials, the cost of research on new pharmaceutical compounds, and vaccine manufacturing.

New Report Suggests Only Small Risk Of Mobile Phones Causing Cancer

“A committee of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection has concluded after a comprehensive review that there is little cause for concern about the suggested link between mobile phone use and brain tumors,” BMJ reports (Watts, 7/4).

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