Health Supreme by Sepp Hasslberger

Networking For A Better Future - News and perspectives you may not find in the media

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November 28, 2006

Health Supreme NewsGrabs - 28 November 2006

Health Supreme's News Grabs - alternative health news and bits of related information ...

In this issue:

SSRI drugs for pregnant women, schizophrenia drug use questioned, Tamiflu causes suicidal behaviour, quackbusters lose in California supreme court, Ontario acupuncturists furious over new bill, FDA attacks nutrition companies, universal health care in California, criminal investigation over MS drug, 100,000 a year die in US by hospital infection, hiding negative drug study outcomes, sunshine and vitamin D protect against influenza, AIDS inconsistencies, GM rice contamination 'handled' by USDA approving the rice, marker-assisted selection may replace genetic modification.

- - -

Big Pharma Hits On Pregnant Women
By Evelyn Pringle
If Big Pharma cared one iota about the unborn fetus, at a bare minimum, it would call off its hired-guns traveling around the country peddling SSRI antidepressants to pregnant women by convincing doctors to prescribe the drugs and ignore the studies and FDA warnings that say SSRIs are associated with serious birth defects.

NHS study questions use of new schizophrenia drugs
"We undertook the study thinking that we would show the NHS that their misgivings about the previous data were unfounded," said Shôn Lewis of the University of Manchester, who led the research. "To our horror we found that the old drugs are no worse than the new drugs and in some cases they were statistically better." The first generation of anti-psychotic drugs are prescribed on the NHS but the second generation have the bigger market share. The older drugs are all off-patent but the drug companies have a monopoly on most of the new generation, making them more expensive.

British doctors to get Tamiflu warning
Doctors in the UK are to be warned that the bird flu drug Tamiflu could be linked to psychiatric problems including suicidal behaviour, it emerged today... a 10-month review by the US Food and Drug Administration ... found 103 cases of "neuropsychiatric adverse events", including the deaths of a 17-year-old boy who was killed after jumping in front of a truck and a 14-year-old boy who fell after climbing on a balcony railing.

Quackbusters CRUSHED by California Supreme Court
November 20th, 2006, the California Supreme Court voted unanimously (all seven Justices) to slap down the latest "quackbuster" attempt to use, and abuse, the US Court system to silence their critics. The case, originally known as Barrett v. Clark, then for the appeals process renamed Barrett v. Rosenthal, began over five years ago when three individuals decided to sue "a room full of people."

Furious Chinese acupuncturists declare war on Ontario government over bill
(link no longer active)
"Bill 50 discriminates against the Chinese medicine profession and against the Chinese community and is a second head tax," said Stephen Liu, co-chairman of the Canadian Society of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture. "We will fight to the last."

Critics say they find it offensive that the legislation allows other groups of health professionals - such as physiotherapists, massage therapists or chiropractors - to continue using acupuncture under standards set by their own regulating bodies.

The FDA was within their rights to send warning letters. True enough, some of these small companies had stepped over the line. Had they harmed anybody? Most of the nutrients in the products being offered actually have considerable science showing they may help diabetes. What is the FDA really afraid of? People getting better? People learning what options they have to the drug racket of the sickness industry? Maybe the FDA is trying to distract the public, portraying themselves as effective while they continue to this day to allow thousands of Americans to be injured and die in the name of profits for Bayer.

California Legislature Votes to Kill the Health Insurance Industry
There is a war on in the United States over health care. On one side is the "status quo" represented by the medical monopoly, the pharmaceutical industry, the health insurance carriers, and an entrenched bureauracracy wholly beholden to, and run by, the people they are supposed to regulate. On the other side is a beleaguered America simply trying to find ways to survive...

UK: Criminal probe into MS ‘wonder drug’
A DRUG company is under criminal investigation for the way it has marketed an unproven “wonder” treatment for multiple sclerosis to thousands of patients. The firm, Daval International, chaired by a discharged bankrupt described by a High Court judge in 2002 as a liar, has been promoting its drug as a “major scientific breakthrough”. It is being distributed across Britain using a licence granted by a government agency last year despite serious concerns from doctors and multiple sclerosis (MS) experts.

More Than 100,000 People Die EVERY Year in the U.S. Because of Hospital Acquired Infections
You simply have to be very careful about ever going into the hospital. It should always be viewed as the option of last resort when you have exhausted all others. Not only do you risk developing a life-threatening infection, but the very reason you are in there for could very well be the wrong solution for your problem.

NEJM -- Dangerous Deception -- Hiding the Evidence of Adverse Drug Effects
What put aprotinin on the front page on September 30 ... was the revelation that its manufacturer, Bayer, had hired a private contract research organization to perform its own large observational study of postoperative complications in patients given the drug. The analysis, completed in time for the FDA meeting, reached conclusions similar to those of Mangano et al. It, too, adjusted for a wide variety of clinical characteristics and showed that patients who received aprotinin had higher mortality rates and substantially more renal damage than those given other treatments. But neither Bayer nor its contractor had provided the report to the FDA or even acknowledged its existence before the meeting.

Less sun, more sneezing

Michael Stroh, the science writer for the Baltimore Sun, wrote a very good article this morning about the Vitamin D and Epidemic Influenza paper. Dr. Scott Dowell, an infectious disease expert at the CDC, is quoted by Mr. Stroh as saying, if the theory is true, "the potential impact (of vitamin D) would be far greater than the current influenza

In a paper scheduled for publication next month in the journal Epidemiology and Infection, a Harvard University-led team proposes that a vitamin D deficiency caused by inadequate winter sun exposure may predispose people to infection.

If this theory proves correct, it would not only solve a long-standing mystery, but could also have major public health consequences.

TB is TB. It is not AIDS. Treating TB saves lives.

AIDS drugs and adverse events (side effects)

Hazardous brew: Abacavir, Stavudine and Didanosine.

Exclusive focus on HIV & lack of abortion rights hurt women

The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

UNAIDS' African HIV reports are wildly inaccurate

UNAIDS India HIV estimate is a fabrication

Timeless: the mind-body connection endures

Genetically Engineered Rice Wins USDA Approval
The Department of Agriculture declared safe for human consumption yesterday an experimental variety of genetically engineered rice found to have contaminated the U.S. rice supply this summer. The move ... to deregulate the special long-grain rice, LL601, was seen as a legal boon to its creator, Bayer CropScience. The company applied for approval shortly after the widespread contamination was disclosed in August and now faces a class-action lawsuit filed by hundreds of farmers in Arkansas and Missouri. The experimental rice ... escaped from Bayer's test plots after the company dropped the project in 2001. The resulting contamination, once it became public, prompted countries around the world to block rice imports from the United States, sending rice futures plummeting and farmers into fits. In approving the rice, the USDA allowed Bayer to take a regulatory shortcut and skip many of the usual safety tests. Joseph Mendelson, legal director of the nonprofit Center for Food Safety, said the quick approval shows that the USDA is more concerned about the fortunes of the biotechnology industry than about consumers' health. "USDA is telling agricultural biotechnology companies that it doesn't matter if you're negligent, if you break the rules, if you contaminate the food supply with untested genetically engineered crops, we'll bail you out," Mendelson said in a statement. Officials in Europe, where genetically altered rice is derisively dubbed "Frankenfood," made clear as recently as last week that European countries will not accept any U.S. rice, he said.
(Information received via PEERS:

Gene splicing has been made obsolete by a cutting-edge technology that greatly accelerates classical plant breeding
... in an ironic twist, new cutting-edge technologies have made gene splicing and transgenic crops obsolete and a serious impediment to scientific progress. The new frontier is called genomics and the new agricultural technology is called marker-assisted selection (MAS). The new technology offers a sophisticated method to greatly accelerate classical breeding. A growing number of scientists believe MAS - which is already being introduced into the market - will eventually replace GM food. Moreover, environmental organisations that oppose GM crops are guardedly supportive of MAS technology.


posted by Sepp Hasslberger on Tuesday November 28 2006
updated on Monday November 29 2010

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