Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Researchers shed light on new enzymatic reaction

Researchers have discovered that repurposed enzymes and light are key to producing chemical compounds in an environmentally friendly fashion. By blending bio- and photocatalysis and experimenting with reactionary 'ingredients,' the research team developed a visible-light-induced reaction using the enzyme family ene-reductase (ER). The substrates used in this study, alkenes, can be derived in principle from biomass fatty acids; the end products are valuable chiral carbonyl compounds with potential pharmaceutical applications.

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Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Taking inventory of which drugs the world is using to treat COVID-19

New research catalogued every COVID treatment documented in medical literature so far and found physicians have reported on the use of more than 100 different off-label and experimental treatments.

With doctors and researchers around the world searching for effective treatments for COVID-19, many drugs approved to treat other diseases are being used in hopes that they'll be effective against the virus, a use that's known as "off-label." New research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania catalogued every use documented in medical literature so far and found physicians have reported on the use of more than 100 different off-label and experimental treatments. The effort, called COvid19 Registry of Off-label & New Agents (CORONA), is an attempt to take an inventory of what's being used where, as well as to spot any evidence of treatments that warrant further investigation in a randomized clinical trial.

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Monday, May 25, 2020

New double-contrast technique picks up small tumors on MRI

Early detection of tumors is extremely important in treating cancer. A new technique offers a significant advance in using magnetic resonance imaging to pick out even very small tumors from normal tissue.

Chemical probes that produce a signal on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be used to target and image tumors. The new research is based on a phenomenon called magnetic resonance tuning that occurs between two nanoscale magnetic elements. One acts to enhance the signal, and the other quenches it. Previous studies have shown that quenching depends on the distance between the magnetic elements. This opens new possibilities for non-invasive and sensitive investigation of a variety of biological processes by MRI.

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Story Source:
Materials provided by University of California - Davis. Original written by Andy Fell. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

No evidence of benefit for Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine in COVID-19 patients, study finds

A large observational study suggests that treatment with the antimalarial drug chloroquine or its analogue hydroxychloroquine (taken with or without the antibiotics azithromycin or clarithromycin) offers no benefit for patients with COVID-19. The study analysed data from nearly 15,000 patients with COVID-19 receiving a combination of any of the four drug regimens and 81,000 controls.

Treatment with these medications among patients with COVID-19, either alone or in combination with macrolide antibiotics, was linked to an increased risk of serious heart rhythm complications in these patients.
Researchers suggest these treatment regimens should not be used to treat COVID-19 outside of clinical trials until results from randomised clinical trials are available to confirm the safety and efficacy of these medications for COVID-19 patients.
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Thursday, April 16, 2020

Alzheimer's patients may need dosing changes in medicines prescribed for other conditions

Patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) are often prescribed drugs for other conditions -- including diabetes or high blood pressure -- at the same doses as those without dementia. That practice might need to be reexamined in the wake of new mouse studies. The findings suggest that AD could alter absorption of medications from the digestive tract, so dosages might need to be adjusted for these patients.

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Wednesday, April 15, 2020

How stress remodels the brain

"Stress alters brain function and produces lasting changes in human behavior and physiology," Liu adds. "The experience of traumatic events can lead to neuropsychiatric disorders including anxiety, depression and drug addiction. Investigation of the neurobiology of stress can reveal how stress affects neuronal connections and hence brain function. This knowledge is necessary for developing strategies to prevent or treat these common stress-related neurological disorders."
Research has shown how stress changes the structure of the brain and reveals a potential therapeutic target to the prevent or reverse it.
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Friday, April 10, 2020

First in-human study of drug targeting brain inflammation supports further development

MW189 blocks abnormal inflammation in the brain that is known to contribute to injury- and disease-induced neurologic impairments in a number of acute and chronic brain disorders. This study examined MW189 in healthy adult volunteers.

The article reports that MW189 was safe and well-tolerated by volunteers, with no clinically significant concerns after either a single dose or multiple administrations of MW189. "This is an important result," said Van Eldik, "because in order to get future FDA approval of any drug for patients, the drug candidate first has to be tested and shown to be safe in healthy volunteers." Van Eldik goes on to say "overall, these studies support further development of MW189 for treatment of patients with acute brain injuries such as TBI or hemorrhagic stroke."

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