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  1. 1. Low-cost vitamin D supplement blockstuberculosis (TB) for six weeks after a singledoseThursday, May 17, 2007 by: Staff writerScientists have shown that a single 2.5mg dose of vitamin D may be enough to boost the immunesystem to fight against tuberculosis (TB) and similar bacteria for at least 6 weeks. Their findingscame from a study that identified an extraordinarily high incidence of vitamin D deficiencyamongst those communities in London most at risk from the disease, which kills around twomillion people each year.The research, funded by the Wellcome Trust, the Department of Environmental Health atNewham Council and Newham University Hospital NHS Trust Respiratory Research Fund, ispublished online in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.Whilst a diet of oily fish can provide some vitamin D, the main source of the bodys vitamin Dcomes from exposing the skin to sunlight. In Britain, however, the amount of sunlight is usuallyinsufficient to make vitamin D in the skin between October and April, and much of thepopulation becomes deficient during the winter and spring.Researchers from Queen Marys School of Medicine and Dentistry, London, and the WellcomeTrust Centre for Research in Clinical Tropical Medicine, Imperial College London, studiedpatients at Newham University Hospital and Northwick Park Hospital in London who had beenexposed to TB. They found that over 90% of such patients had a vitamin D deficiency.Vitamin D was used to treat TB in the pre-antibiotic era, when special sanatoria were built insunny locations, such as the Swiss Alps. But until now, no study has evaluated the effect ofvitamin D supplementation on immunity to mycobacteria, the family of bacteria that cause TB.The researchers performed a randomised control trial on a group of volunteers who were giveneither a 2.5mg supplement or a placebo. Samples of the volunteers blood were then tested in DrRobert Wilkinsons Wellcome Trust-funded laboratory at Imperial College, to see whether thesupplement affected the immune systems ability to withstand infection by mycobacteria."We found that a single large dose of vitamin D was sufficient to enhance a persons immunity tothe bacteria," says Dr Adrian Martineau from the Division of Medicine at Imperial CollegeLondon, who co-ordinated the study. "This is very significant given the high levels of vitamin Ddeficiency in people at the highest risk of TB infection, and shows that a simple, cheapsupplement could make a significant impact on the health of people most at risk from thedisease."
  2. 2. According to the Health Protection Agency, the incidence of TB in the UK is increasing, witharound 8,000 new cases a year. Cases in the UK are predominantly confined to the major citiesand about 40 per cent of all cases are in London. TB is also a major global problem: an estimatedone-third of the worlds population – nearly two billion people – are infected. Nine millionpeople a year develop the active disease worldwide, which kills two million each year."Most cases of TB in London arise from people who have already become infected with thebacteria but in whom it lies latent," says Professor Chris Griffiths from Queen Mary’s School ofMedicine and Dentistry. "Our results indicate that vitamin D supplementation may preventreactivation of latent TB. Identifying people with latent TB and providing supplements could bean important strategy for tackling the disease."Treatment is both very cheap – about 60p per dose or 10p per week – and safe. Vitamin Dsupplements could be prescribed for patients with or at risk of latent TB through GP surgeries.Dr Martineau points out: "Our work adds to the growing evidence that vitamin D may have awide range of important health benefits, including preventing falls and fractures and reducingrisk of cancer and diabetes, as well as boosting the immune system against infection. Population-wide supplementation needs to be considered by public health planners.""Milk and orange juice could be fortified with vitamin D, as in the US and Canada," he says. "Atpresent only margarine is supplemented in the UK, and recent studies show that this is not aneffective way to prevent vitamin D deficiency."Additional information about the healing effects of vitamin D are found in the exclusiveNaturalNews guide, "The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D."Learn more: deadly TB strain threatens to sweep theglobe; WHO warns nations to prepareMonday, October 23, 2006 by: Jerome Douglas(NaturalNews) The World Health Organization (WHO) has released a warning regarding severaldeadly new strains of the tuberculosis (TB) virus. The new strains appear to be untreatable usingcurrent drug therapy, and are making their way rapidly across the globe.
  3. 3. Paul Nunn -- who heads the tuberculosis resistance team for WHO -- estimated the situation as aserious one, encompassing 9 million TB cases worldwide. WHO estimates that 180,000 of thesecases -- roughly two percent -- could be XDR-TB, one of the newer strains. Nunn says "This israising the spectre of something that we have been worried might happen for a decade -- thepossibility of virtually untreatable TB."The XDR-TB virus is resistant to conventional drug treatment, and its been linked to deaths inseveral countries -- including the United States, Eastern Europe and Africa. If the XDR-TB virusspreads in Africa, it could affect the containment of the AIDS pandemic currently underway onthat continent.In the United States alone, 33 percent of those who have been diagnosed with XDR-TB havedied. In March 2006, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) concluded there had been 64 cases ofXDR-TB at that point, and 21 of those cases ended in the patients death.One of the most serious situations is in Africa, where all XDR-TB patients who could be testedwere found to be HIV positive. With AIDS causing patients to become susceptible to any and alltypes of infection, tuberculosis is a major cause of death in people who already have AIDS. Inaddition, most African countries either do not have emergency plans in place or medicallaboratories capable of collecting and analyzing data to track and deal with TB-infected citizens.WHO officials and global TB experts will meet in an emergency two-day meeting inJohannesburg tomorrow to discuss recommendations for containment and to ensure all knownTB patients take a full six-month course of drugs. This efforts goal will be to try and preventdrug resistance from developing. Those efforts have met with limited success so far.75 Filipinos still die of tuberculosis every dayBy Dateline PhilippinesPosted on Mar. 24, 2010 at 7:20pmMANILA, Philippines – The World Health Organization (WHO) said the “Philippines has a long way to go”in eradicating tuberculosis (TB), even as the Health department confidently announced that the countrywill be able to attain the millennium development goal of reducing TB deaths by 50% within five years or2015.The number of deaths due to TB stands at an average of 75 Filipinos every day. Diagnosed as curable, itranks 6th among the top leading causes of mortality and morbidity in the Philippines.DOH assistant secretary Nemesio Gako said the “Philippines has made great strides in combating TB.”
  4. 4. Citing recent statistics, Gako said that DOH reported a decrease in the number of mortality due to TBfrom 38.2 deaths per 100,000 population to a rate of 31 per 100,000.“While the Philippines is still included in the WHO watch-list of 22 high-burdened countries, it haslowered its ranking in TB prevalence from 7th to 9th,” Gako said in a press conference at the LungCenter of the Philippines in Quezon City.In 2006, the Philippines signed the Global Plan on TB, which seeks to reduce the prevalence andmortality of tuberculosis by 50% between 2006 and 2015. The Global Plan outlines a benchmark figureof 70% case detection rate (CDR), 85% treatment success rate (TSR) and 85% cure rate.National TB program manager Rosalind Vianzon said that midway to the 2015 goal, the Philippinesalready breached the benchmark figures set by the WHO in terms of CDR and TSR.She said that about 75% of TB-carrying Filipinos were already detected while 90% were successfullytreated since the health department implemented its early detection program for TB in the 1990s.Vianzon noted the DOH saw an increase in TB case detection in the past five years from 134,000 to150,000 per year. She explained that the best way to stop TB disease from further spreading in thecommunity is to have TB-carrying patients detected, treated and finally cured.Despite the optimism of health officials, a 2010 technical briefer on the National TB Program preparedby the DOH showed a declining trend in three benchmarks.Only 72% of TB cases were detected and 89% were treated as of 2008. DOH records showed that thecure rate is pegged at 79%, or six percent short of the 85% cure rate targeted by 2015.As early as 2006, the Philippines already attained the 75% target for case detection and maintained thatrate until 2007. But figures dropped to 72% in 2008. Treatment success rate also slightly dropped from90% in 2006 to 89% in 2008.
  5. 5. Cure rate registered the biggest decline among the three benchmarks. The technical briefer on TBshowed the cure rate reaching 83% in 2006, slightly dipped to 82% the following year, and dropped to79% in 2008.Health officials said the declining trend on TB statistics coincided with the government’s heavy fundallocations to eradicate the disease. Vianzon said state funding for TB prevention increased five folds, toP1.1 billion in 2010 from P100 million in the past three years.Dr. Woojin Lew, medical officer at WHO-Philippines, said the Philippine government has “a long way togo” in terms of detecting, treating and curing highly infectious TB patients.“Although prevalence rate is decreasing, I think there is not enough to achieve the target by 2015,” Lewsaid during the press conference.Lew said that mortality among highly infectious TB patients remains high in the Philippines, a factadmitted by Health officials.Vianzon said that detection of high-risk TB patients is “difficult.”Based on the 3rd National Prevalence Survey on TB conducted by the DOH in 2007, Multi-Drug ResistantTuberculosis or MDRTB among new cases increased from 1.5% in 1997 to 2.1% ten years later.The survey also showed that MDRTB among re-treatment cases slightly decreased from 14.5% in 1997 to13% in 2007, while prevalence of smear-positive TB and culture-positive TB almost dropped by 100%between 1997 and 2007.Health activists claim the Philippine government failed to bring down the morality rate due to TB despiteadvances in technology and heavy state funding.
  6. 6. “After more than five decades, TB still ranks among the top causes of disease and death in this country,”said Dr. Geneve Rivera, secretary-general of Health Alliance for Democracy. “This, despite advances inmedicine and in health-related technologies, and amidst government programs.”Rivera said in a statement that TB is the “real measure of the quality of lives of Filipinos today…. Itreflects the extent of our underdevelopment – our inability to provide the quality of life necessary forour people to be healthy enough to resist being infected. As such, social determinants of health shouldbe addressed with equal, if not more, importance.”Incidence of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes in the Philippines and WorldwideDiabetes Mellitus (DM) or simply diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce orproperly use insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other foodinto energy needed for daily life. This is the reason why diabetics need an insulin injection if thedisease is already severe.The cause of diabetes continues to be a mystery, although both genetics and environmentalfactors such as obesity and lack of exercise appear to play roles.Statistics on Diabetes Mellitus, obesity and hypertension are startling. In the United States, areport says that 2 out of 3 (66.6%) adult Americans, and 15% of the children, are overweight. Inthe United States alone, there are about 17 million diabetics. Five to 10% have Type I (juvenile),and the rest, Type II (adult onset) diabetes. Before insulin was discovered in the early 1920s,type 1 diabetes had 100% mortality. In the past 10 years, there has been a 33% increased in thenumber of diabetic patients. It is indeed scary.In another report by the Medical Observer, “Diabetes is not only a disease of the middle age.More and more, high school and elementary students [are being affected]. At age 22, bulag na ehindi pa kumikita (blind already while not yet earning money). At age 20 plus, nagda-dialysis na,possibly stroke and heart attack,” says Dr. Tommy Ty Willing, president of the PhilippineDiabetes Association (PDA), during the recent observance of World Diabetes Day in November.Pediatric endocrinologist Sioksoan Chan-Cua said that patients as young as five years old arecoming to her clinic with type 2 diabetes, a disease usually associated with people 40 years oldand above. “I’m getting patients with blood sugar of more than 1,000. They come in withdiabetic ketoacidosis, a breakdown of fat tissues when the body cannot utilize the glucose verywell anymore,” she said.While there are no clear data yet among the young on the running incidence of type 2 diabetes,related statistics add up to a grim scenario. Type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune condition normallyaffecting the young, is rising by three percent worldwide, with 17 percent of children 14 andbelow developing the disease each year.
  7. 7. Chan-Cua said the Philippines is still low on this score compared with other countries, especiallyScandinavian nations like Finland, Sweden, and Norway, but we are also seeing an increaseevery year. My perception on this is simple – Filipinos love sweets and fatty foods. Also, ourstaple food is rice, which is a starchy food item. This makes diet as the primary risk factor todiabetes in the Philippines in my view.Moreover, mathematical modelling on projection yields that 380 million people are expected todevelop diabetes by 2025 based on International Diabetes Federation/World Health Organizationdata, a good percentage will be coming from Southeast Asian countries, including thePhilippines. This finding is no longer astonishing considering the latest statistics on Pinoysafflicted with diabetes and hypertension which continues to increase on the scale of medicalrecords. This goes to show that statistics on Diabetes Mellitus in the Philippines continues to beunfavorable to the general population because of the continuous rise in the number of Filipinosdeveloping diabetes every year which adds to the number of people who cannot enjoy life andare becoming less productive due to this disease.Possible Link Between Two Diabetes DrugsAnd Pancreatic CancerMain Category: DiabetesAlso Included In: Pancreatic CancerArticle Date: 17 Sep 2011 - 0:00 PDTTwo newer drugs used to treat Type 2 diabetes could be linked to a significantly increased risk ofdeveloping pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer, and one could also be linked to an increased risk ofthyroid cancer, according to a new UCLA study.Researchers from the Larry L. Hillblom Islet Research Center at UCLA examined the U.S. Food and DrugAdministrations database for adverse events reported between 2004 and 2009 among patients usingthe drugs sitagliptin and exenatide. They found a six-fold increase in the odds ratio for reported cases ofpancreatitis with these drugs, compared with four other diabetes therapies they used as controls. Theyalso found that patients who took the two drugs were more likely to have developed pancreatic cancerthan those who were treated with the other therapies.The study is published in the journal Gastroenterology."We undertook these studies because several studies in animal models by several investigators hadsuggested that this form of therapy may have unintended actions to promote growth of the ducts(tubes) in the pancreatic gland that convey digestive juices from the pancreas to the gut," said Dr. PeterButler, director of the Hillblom Center and a study co-author. "This is a concern if it happens in humanssince it might be expected to increase the risk for pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. While the FDAdata base has limitations, it does have advantages in being very large, openly accessible and
  8. 8. independent from companies that market the drugs."Taken together the animals studies and the FDA data base analysis suggest that further work needs tobe undertaken to at least rule out that this now widely available new drug class for diabetes does notincrease the risk of pancreatic cancer," Butler, who is also a member of UCLAs Jonsson ComprehensiveCancer Center, added.Sitagliptin and exenatide are drugs that enhance the actions of a gut hormone known as glucagon-likepeptide 1 (GLP-1), which has been shown to be effective in lowering blood sugar in individuals with Type2 diabetes. Sitagliptin, marketed as Januvia by Merck & Co. Inc., works by inhibiting dipeptidylpeptidase-4 (DDP-4), an enzyme that degrades GLP-1. Exenatide, manufactured by AmylinPharmaceuticals and sold as Byetta, mimics the action of GLP-1 and resists DDP-4 degradation.Previous research by UCLA Hillblom Center researchers suggested there might be a link between drugsthat enhance the actions of GLP-1 and pancreatitis, possibly resulting from an increase in the rate offormation of cells that line the pancreatic ducts. That research, based on studies in rats, was publishedin 2009 in the journal Diabetes.In addition to the six-fold increase in reported cases of pancreatitis, the researchers also found a 2.9-foldgreater rate of pancreatic cancer in patients using exenatide and a 2.7-fold higher rate of pancreaticcancer in patients on sitagliptin, compared with the other therapies. Additionally, they found astatistically significant increase in the risk of thyroid cancer among the exenatide group, but not amongthe sitagliptin group.The FDA data did not indicate links between the two diabetes drugs and any other form of cancer.The researchers caution that the FDAs adverse events database "is not the ideal mechanism to compareadverse event rates between drugs," given its known limitations, such as incomplete data and reportingbiases. They stress that more study is needed."Randomized, controlled clinical trials remain the gold standard for such assessment," the researcherswrote.Teens Who Consume Milk Reap HealthBenefits Through Adulthood, Less Likely ToDevelop Type 2 Diabetes
  9. 9. Main Category: Nutrition / DietAlso Included In: Pediatrics / Childrens Health; Diabetes; Obesity / Weight Loss / FitnessArticle Date: 16 Sep 2011 - 0:00 PDTDeveloping healthy habits like drinking milk as a teen could have a long-term effect on a womans riskfor type 2 diabetes, according to new research in this months issue of the American Journal of ClinicalNutrition (1). Researchers found that milk-drinking teens, were also likely to be milk-drinking adults - alifelong habit that was associated with a 43 percent lower risk for type 2 diabetes compared to non-milkdrinkers. Diabetes affects more than 25.8 million people, or nearly 1 out of 10 Americans.The Harvard University study studied teenage and adult food intake patterns (including milk and milkproducts) and health risk in more than 37,000 women. Researchers found the women who drank themost milk as adults and consumed the most milk products in their teen years (about 4 servings per day)had a lower risk of type 2 diabetes than those who consistently had a low dairy intake (about 1 servingper day during the teen years). The milk-drinking teens were also more likely to maintain their dairyhabit through adulthood and gained less weight over time - nearly 4 pounds less than milk-skippers.Weight gain is another important risk factor for type 2 diabetes.A second large Harvard study reinforced the lifelong benefits of milk - particularly as a protein source.Studying more than 440,000 adults, researchers found that swapping lowfat dairy for meat as a proteinsource, could reduce risk for type 2 diabetes by 17%. (2)Each glass of fat free milk provides 8 grams of high-quality protein, along with eight other essentialnutrients Americans need, including calcium and vitamin D for just 80 calories. The Dietary Guidelinesfor Americans recommend three servings of fat free or lowfat milk each day.About the National Milk Mustache "got milk?"® CampaignThe Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP), Washington, D.C., is funded by the nations milkprocessors, who are committed to increasing fluid milk consumption. The National Fluid Milk ProcessorPromotion Board, through MilkPEP, runs the National Milk Mustache "got milk?"® Campaign, a multi-faceted campaign designed to educate consumers about the health benefits of milk.* Deutsch, A Loweand Partners Company, is the creative agency for the National Milk Mustache "got milk?"® Campaign.