According to UCB, certolizumab pegol achieved top-level results in a phase 3 study, which assessed the drug's efficacy and safety in patients with adult-onset active axial spondyloarthritis (AxSpA), a family of inflammatory rheumatic diseases, including ankylosing spondylitis (AS). Professor Dr Iris Loew-Friedrich, Chief Medical Officer and Executive Vice President at UCB explained: "The population in this study included both patients with AS and with an early stage of the disease, called non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis. Both populations are part of a recently defined group of rheumatic diseases, axial spondyloarthritis. The positive top-line results are very encouraging since there is a need for treatments for patients with non-radiographic AxSpA and for additional effective anti-TNF treatments for AS.
Researchers in Canada, Scotland and Australia have discovered that salicylate, the active ingredient in aspirin, directly increases the activity of the protein AMPK (AMP-activated protein kinase), a key player in regulating cell growth and metabolism. AMPK which is considered a cellular fuel-gauge is switched on by exercise and the commonly used anti-diabetic medication metformin. The research from scientists at McMaster University, the University of Dundee and the University of Melbourne is published in the journal Science. "We're finding this old dog of aspirin already knows new tricks, " said Dr. Greg Steinberg, a co-principal investigator of the study. "In the current paper we show that, in contrast to exercise or metformin which increase AMPK activity by altering the cells energy balance, the effects of salicylate is totally reliant on a single Ser108 amino acid of the beta 1 subunit.
Two Phase III studies, published in The Lancet, reveal that ultra-long-acting insulin degludec considerably reduced rates of nocturnal hypoglycemia in patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes by 25%, compared to insulin glargine. Insulin degludec is an investigational compound developed by Novo Nordisk. 1, 635 individuals with diabetes were enrolled to participate in the trials in order to examine insulin degludec, compared to insulin glargine, in a basal-bolus regimen. In both studies, researchers adjusted patient insulin doses systematically in order to allow them to achieve a targeted fasting glucose level. Due to this, participants in both studies successfully achieved similar improvements in sugar control. This allowed the researchers to closely determine disparity in hypoglycemia rates.
International experts have written in this week's issue of PLoS Medicine that even though medical research from low-and middle-income countries has steadily risen in the last few decades, many countries still fail to have anything similar resembling a health research strategy. In view of the approaching World Health Report, which addresses the need for health research, Martin McKee from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine in the UK, and his team pledge their case in terms of the significance of establishing national health research strategies to ensure a functional and thriving public health system. They stress that strengthening efforts in health research's capacity have, so far, focused on countries that already have an existing capacity, instead of on those countries that have next to no capacity.
A Michigan State University surgeon is teaming up with a Lansing-area dental benefits firm on a clinical trial to create a simple, cost-effective saliva test to detect oral cancer, a breakthrough that would drastically improve screening and result in fewer people dying of the world's sixth most common cancer. Barry Wenig, a professor in the College of Human Medicine's Department of Surgery and lead investigator on the project, is working with Delta Dental of Michigan's Research and Data Institute to compile study data and recruit dentists. The study will enroll 100-120 patients with white lesions or growths in their mouths and tonsil areas to test as part of the clinical trial. Wenig and his team will be looking for certain biomarkers previously identified by researchers at UCLA; the biomarkers have been shown in studies to confirm the presence of oral cancer.