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Archive for April, 2015

AUSTRALIA: Over-the-counter sale of codeine pain killers such as Nurofen Plus and Panadeine may end

Monday, April 27th, 2015

woman with headache image www.newcures.info

Proposed changes could see a doctor’s visit required for current over-the-counter painkillers.

Access to Nurofen Plus, Panadeine and other common painkillers sold to millions of Australians each year could soon be curtailed by health authorities amid reports of harmful side effects, addiction and fatal overuse.

Australia’s drug regulator is considering a proposal to make about 150 codeine products prescription-only medicines, meaning they could no longer be freely purchased over the counter at pharmacies and would require a visit to a doctor.

Medicines affected by the change could include Codral Original Cold and Flu Tablets, Aspalgin Soluble tablets and Mersyndol Tablets, which are marketed for short-term pain such as headaches, toothaches and period pain.

pain relief pill box sketch image www.newcures.info

Although many people use the drugs safely in recommended amounts, doctors say an increasing number are suffering severe gastrointestinal damage and internal bleeding from taking excessive doses of ibuprofen, which is often mixed with codeine, a weak but potentially-addictive opioid.
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In 2013, Monash University researchers reported nine deaths over a decade linked to toxicity from codeine-ibuprofen medicines such as Nurofen Plus.

Codeine addicts swallowing up to 100 tablets a day have been known to visit multiple pharmacies to get around rules introduced in 2010 that restrict purchases of more than five days’ supply of the drug at one time.

Recent government agency data shows the number of Australians being treated for codeine addiction more than tripled over the decade to 2012-13, from 318 to more than 1000 a year. But Matthew Frei, addiction medicine specialist and clinical director of Turning Point Alcohol & Drug Centre, said this figure probably vastly underestimated the number of problem users as many patients who abused drugs were not detected.

In response to these concerns, a July meeting of the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling will discuss whether codeine drugs should be made “schedule 4” drugs that require a doctor’s prescription. They are currently “schedule 3” medicines.

While Australian Medical Association Victorian branch president Tony Bartone said he personally supported the idea of making codeine a prescription only drug, the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia and the Pharmacy Guild of Australia opposes the proposal. It says governments should instead be investing in real-time prescription monitoring systems to better detect people abusing the drugs.

Pharmacy Guild Victorian president Anthony Tassone​ said pharmacists were qualified to determine who could purchase codeine products over the counter and who should be referred to a doctor for further discussion.

“For pharmacists to supply schedule 3 medication including codeine they need to establish a genuine therapeutic need,” he said.

Australian Self Medication Industry executive director Deon Schoombie​ said forcing people to go to their doctor for codeine tablets ran the risk of them walking away from their GPs with even stronger drugs.

“It just shifts the problem [to doctors]. Does it solve the problem? I doubt it,” he said.

But pain medicine specialist Dr Michael Vagg said codeine purchased over the counter was in such low doses that some people may find themselves taking more and more to produce meaningful pain relief.

Furthermore, he said up to 30 per cent of people do not have the right enzymes in their liver to process codeine, meaning they will not experience pain relief when taking it but will experience other side effects.

“You could certainly make a case that it’s not valuable enough and that it’s too harmful,” said Dr Vagg, a senior lecturer at Deakin University Medical School.

“If you have severe acute pain and the simple analgesics are not cutting it, you are better off going to your doctor to get a diagnosis and prescription. With persistent pain, that advice is even more important. Trying to manage long-term persistent pain with lots of doses of short-acting analgesics is not the best approach.”

Protein converts pancreatic cancer cells back into healthy cells

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015

pancreatic_cancer schematic diagram image www.newcures.info

Scientists working in the area of pancreatic cancer research have uncovered a technique that sees cancerous cells transform back into normal healthy cells. The method relies in the introduction of a protein called E47, which bonds with particular DNA sequences and reverts the cells back to their original state.

The study was a collaboration between researchers at the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, University of California San Diego and Purdue University. The scientists are hopeful that it could help combat the deadly disease in humans.

“For the first time, we have shown that over-expression of a single gene can reduce the tumor-promoting potential of pancreatic adenocarcinoma cells and reprogram them toward their original cell type,” says Pamela Itkin-Ansari, adjunct professor at Sanford-Burnham and lead author of the study. “Thus, pancreatic cancer cells retain a genetic memory which we hope to exploit.”

For their research, the scientists developed pancreatic cancer cells with heightened levels of the E47 protein. They found that the protein then controlled genes responsible for growth and differentiation. It halted the cancer cells in the growth stage and caused them to revert back to acinar cells, the healthy cells that produce pancreatic juice.

The researchers also conducted in vivo studies where the reprogrammed cells were introduced into mice. They found that the animal’s propensity to form tumors was substantially less than those with regular pancreatic cancer cells.

“Our next step is to test primary patient-derived tumor tissue to determine whether E47 can produce similar results, potentially providing a novel therapeutic approach to combating this highly lethal disease,” says Itkin-Ansari. “Additionally, we are screening for molecules and potential drugs, that can induce over-expression of E47.”

The research was published in the journal Pancreas.

Source: Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute

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Henry Sapiecha

Study Suggests Correlation Between Heart Health and Optimism, so smile more & live longer

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

SMILE & MAKE YOUR HEART HAPPY & LIVE LONGER

grin pink heart bling image www.newcures.info

People whose glasses are half-full are reportedly twice as likely to have healthy hearts, according to a new study published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review journal.

“Individuals with the highest levels of optimism have twice the odds of being in ideal cardiovascular health compared to their more pessimistic counterparts,” said Rosalba Hernandez, the lead author of the study and social work professor at the University of Illinois. “This association remains significant, even after adjusting for socio-demographic characteristics and poor mental health.”

The study took stock of more than 5,000 adults’ cardiovascular health and general outlook on life over the course of 11 years, beginning in July 2000. Blood pressure, body mass index, dietary intake, physical activity, tobacco use, cholesterol and blood glucose all factored into an individual subject’s heart health analysis.

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Research subjects, all between the ages of 45 and 84 years old, also completed surveys to gauge their self-reported levels of optimism and general states mental health. The study found that those with the highest self-reported levels of optimism were about twice as likely to score strongly in terms of cardiovascular health.

The optimists in the study were found to have better blood sugar and cholesterol levels than their more negative counterparts. Optimism also correlated with higher levels of physical activity, healthier body mass indexes and lower rates of smoking.

The study was conducted by professors from Indiana, Northwestern, Chapman, Harvard and Drexel universities and funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and the National Center for Research Resources. Its findings contribute to a growing pool of research suggesting correlation between physical health and mental and emotional wellbeing.

[MORE: 2015 Means First-Time Health Insurance Coverage for Millions of Americans]

Time cites a 2012 Harvard study suggesting a link between “positive psychological well-being” and reduced rates of heart disease and stroke. That particular study acknowledges that psychological well-being is “a broad concept” but ultimately found that, out of a series of psychological indicators, “optimism is most robustly associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular events.”

A separate 2011 study found that “satisfaction in most life domains was associated with reduced “coronary heart disease risk.”

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Henry Sapiecha

HPV Vaccine in Men Would Save Costs of Treating Throat Cancer

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

A new study shows that giving men Gardasil is cost-effective and prevents throat cancer.

Gardasil is cost-effective and prevents throat cancer.image www.newcures.info

Controversy over the HPV vaccine has centered on its risks to girls and the idea that protecting them against cervical cancer could also lead them to experiment with sex at a younger age. But a new study underscores the effect of HPV on men, and points out that vaccinating men against the virus could prevent throat cancer as well.
About 9,300 men in the U.S. each year are affected by HPV-caused cancers, among them oropharyngeal cancer that occurs in the middle part of the throat behind the mouth and can develop around the tonsils and the back of the tongue. That number is expected to grow dramatically in the coming years.

“It is projected that by 2020, HPV-related oropharyngeal cancer will become the most common HPV-related cancer in the U.S., surpassing cervical cancer,” Dr. Donna Graham, a medical oncologist who led a new study on vaccination in men, said in a statement.

THROAT OPERATION PATIENT image www.newcures (1)

The virus can be transmitted through oral sex, but the cases of throat cancer are four times more common in men than women. Men can also carry the virus in the genitals without knowing it, partly because researchers still have not figured out how to test men for the virus to detect early cancer cells. The new study in which Graham was involved shows that administering the vaccine to more boys could prevent them from getting cancer much later in life.

“People who are exposed to the virus may or may not get infected,” says Dr. Lillian Sui, another author of the study who is also staff medical oncologist at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and a professor at the University of Toronto.

[RELATED: The Future of Male Birth Control]

The study, released online Monday in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, indicates that vaccinating 12-year-old boys against HPV is a cost-effective strategy for preventing throat cancer.

Researchers applied a statistical model to 192,940 Canadian boys who were 12 years old in 2012, and found that vaccination could save $6 million to $22 million, depending on the cost of the vaccine, its effectiveness, the cost of cancer treatment and the survival rate of patients who get cancer.

Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show vaccination rates for males climbed from 20.8 percent in 2012 to 34.6 percent in 2013. Sui says that if more boys were vaccinated, then the vaccine would prevent throat cancer as effectively as it prevents cervical cancer.

For women, the vaccines Gardasil and Cervarix protect against 70 percent of cervical cancers and 90 percent of genital warts cases. They work in the body for at least a decade without becoming less effective and have not been associated with any long-term health problems. Gardasil is the vaccine typically given to men.

Still, rates of vaccination even for women are not as high as they are for other vaccines, and a November 2014 CDC report showed millions of U.S. women are not getting screened for cervical cancer. “Herd immunity,” which occurs when large numbers of people become immune to a virus, requires 80-90 percent of people to be vaccinated in order to be effective. Vaccinating more men would help protect women who are not vaccinated as well as protecting men who have sex with unvaccinated men.

Concerns linger over what administering the vaccine could mean to young people, partially because it is recommended by the CDC at such a young age. For boys and girls, the agency has recommended since 2011 that children receive the three-part vaccine at ages 11 or 12. The agency has said that doing so would allow the immune system to build before teens become sexually active.

The most common sexually transmitted disease in the U.S., HPV infects 14 million people a year. It has more than 100 strains, most of which are not harmful and go away within two years. About 30 types, however, can put women at risk for cervical, vulvar or vaginal cancer. Other types cause warts in men and women. Even people who have no symptoms can spread the virus, and cancer can take years to develop after a person becomes infected.

[READ: Parents Still Seek Natural Exposure to Viruses]

The CDC says that not having sex is the only sure way to avoid HPV entirely – though condoms can reduce the likelihood of transmission.

Sui isn’t a pediatrician, so she points out that she doesn’t have conversations about the vaccine with young people – but she does see patients down the line who have developed cancer. The vaccines may seem irrelevant at such a young age but parents, doctors and young people should discuss it, she says.

For men, throat cancer develops anywhere from 40-60 years of age, and a test can determine whether HPV is the cause. Women can have Pap smears or HPV tests for early screening efforts, but these types of screening methods do not exist for men. Sui says the incidences of throat cancer found to be related to HPV range from 70-80 percent in North America.

Smoking also can increase the risk of developing HPV-related throat cancer, while the virus can also lead to cancers of the anus and penis. Men are likely to have a better outcome if cancer of the throat is found to be linked with HPV rather than with smoking, Sui says. They are likely to live longer, and this type is less likely to recur, according to the American Cancer Society.

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Henry Sapiecha

‘Manorexia’: Family tells of father’s potentially deadly wish to be thin

Friday, April 17th, 2015

mans torso with arms crossed in front image www.newcures.info

The report found one in 10 anorexia sufferers were men or boys

Anorexia is a health condition we often think only affects young women.

But a new report by The Butterfly Foundation revealed more than 500 males died as a result of eating disorders in Australia last year.

According to the National Eating Disorders Collaboration Report, male body dissatisfaction has increased, with one in 10 of those diagnosed with anorexia nervosa identified as boys or men.

Anorexia nervosa now has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness

Tim* is a 47-year-old West Australian mine worker living with anorexia and bulimia.

His condition began after he underwent gastric band surgery in 2009 to help him lose weight, but instead of helping him, it triggered his six-year battle with the eating disorders.

His daughter, Emma*, spoke out about the devastating effect anorexia has had on her father.

“The band helped him lose a lot of weight, but one of the side effects is if you eat too much you start to vomit because your stomach can’t physically hold anymore, ” she said.

“I don’t think he adjusted to it well because he’s just stuck with the vomiting ever since.

“He used to weigh well into the hundreds [kilos], but now he’s down to around the 60s or 70s.

“He’s literally skin and bones and it worries me because I don’t think he’s going to be around when I have kids.”

Emma said the vomiting was constant and, at times, unbearable to be around.

“He doesn’t shut the bathroom door and because he’s forcing himself to vomit, the vomiting is so loud,” she said.

“I used to worry that the neighbours could hear him.

“He still thinks he’s overweight. He was tormented by his family for being an overweight kid, so I think every time he looks in the mirror he still see the fat kid.

“If someone was to tell me that in the future your dad’s going to be bulimic, I would never have believed them because he was a guy who was really into health and sports.”

An estimated nine per cent of Australians are struggling with eating disorders and the report suggested up to a quarter of people suffering with anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa were men.

Most of the common risk factors that apply to women with eating disorders are the same for men.

But different cultural influences, such as body shape and control over body image, increase men’s vulnerability to developing an eating disorder.

Although eating disorders can develop at any age, males are more prone to developing anorexia in their late teens or early 20s.

Jessica Smith is a former Paralympian and eating disorder advocate for The Butterfly Foundation.

She struggled with anorexia and bulimia for more than a decade and now uses her experience to help raise awareness and support for others.

She said society often didn’t realise the seriousness of eating disorders and the impact it had on individuals.

“We are seeing new diets and weight loss programs all the time and sometimes the severity of these disorders can be limited by the hype of the media,” Jessica said.

“People need to know that they’re not alone and there are organisations that provide services to help them.

“It’s important to tell someone that you trust and stand up for yourself because there are people who will listen.”

Emma believed her father’s illness was influenced by the high expectations women place on men.

“What women don’t realise is we have a huge expectation on males. We expect them to look like Channing Tatum when they take their shirts off,” she said.

“Also, with the new gym junkie trend, you aren’t going to see the guys who are struggling with body images because they can just hide behind the whole image of ‘I’m a man I go to the gym’.

“Dad’s never spoken to us about it and it’s just something that no one talks about. I feel there are a lot of guys who struggle with eating disorders but just aren’t open to talk about it.”

If you or anyone you know is struggling with negative body images or eating disorders please call the National Eating Disorders Help Line on 1800 33 4673 or visit www.nedc.com.au

*Names have been changed to protect the identity of individuals.

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Henry Sapiecha

U.S. prescription drug spending jumps 13% to a record $374 billion

Friday, April 17th, 2015

PILL IN HAND IMAGE www.newcures.info

The influx of millions of people newly insured under the Affordable Care Act was less of a factor than expected — about $1 billion of the spending growth, it said.

“This was an outstanding year, really a once-in-a-lifetime year,” said Michael Kleinrock, director of research development for IMS Health. “It was the largest dollar growth in a single year we’ve ever measured. This is a huge amount of extra spending.”

Does it bother you so much that 10 million more people now have access to healthcare? Is it a bad thing that thousands of people are receiving treatment for the previously incurable Hep C and will no longer be spreading it amongst the population?
I mean, I’m sure you don’t have much human contact at all – to say nothing of intimate – so you don’t worry about communicable diseases. But some of us do.

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Henry Sapiecha

China’s gruesome shameful live organ harvest & crimes against humanity exposed in these 3 video documentaries

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

Human rigts lawyer David Matas has spoken out about organ harvesting in China.image www.newcures.info

Human rigts lawyer David Matas has spoken out about organ harvesting in China.

China’s hospitals are harvesting the body parts of thousands of political prisoners and removing their vital organs while they are still alive, according to a harrowing documentary exposing the horrific state-sanctioned practice.

Doctors and medical students working in state-run civilian and military hospitals take up to 11,000 organs a year from donors under no anaesthetic to supply China’s lucrative “organs on-demand” transplant program, say a network of invesitgators comprised of international researchers, doctors and human rights lawyers attempting to end the macabre abuses.

The documentary, Human Harvest: China’s Organ Trafficking, by Canadian filmmaker Leon Lee, followed these investigators for eight years as they worked to mobilise international condemnation of what they say is a booming billion-dollar organ harvesting industry for the benefit of wealthy paying organ recipients.

“When I cut through [the body] blood was still running … this person was not dead,” said one doctor of his first encounter with live organ harvesting as a medical student filmed by Lee.

“I took the liver and two kidneys. It took me 30 minutes,” he said.

A former Chinese hospital worker and doctor’s wife, whose identity was withheld, told Lee that her husband had removed the corneas of 2000 people while they were still alive. Afterwards the bodies were secretly incinerated.

China has the second highest rate of transplants in the world, with startlingly short wait times for transplant recipients of just two to three weeks.

But a recent Red Cross report found only 37 people nationwide were registered organ donors and harvesting organs from executed prisoners did not come close to accounting for the more than 10,000 transplant procedures performed every year.

Human Rights Lawyer and nobel peace prize nominee David Matas told Lee that living political prisoners make up for the shortfall, with the long-persecuted and banned religious group, the Falun Gong, key targets

religious Falun Gong have been identified as key targets of China's live organ harvesting program in a documentary.image www.newcures.info.

“Somebody’s being killed for the organs,” human rights lawyer David Matas says.

“There’s no other way to explain what’s happening.”

Chinese officials have denied the allegations, claiming organ donors are volunteers. However, under China’s president Xi Jinping, the government has vowed the program would we wound up by August this year, hanging the blame on former security chief Zhou Yongkang.

But Matas and his colleagues are pushing for the perpetrators to stand before the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity.

The film aired on SBS Dateline on Tuesday night.

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Henry Sapiecha

WOUND HEALING CAN BE DONE WITH LASER STITCHING SAY ISRAELI SCIENTISTS IN THIS VIDEO

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Humans have been stitching up their wounds for millennia. Now Israeli scientists say they’ve found a way to bond incisions using lasers. And in the future a handheld laser the size of a pen could do


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Henry Sapiecha

Asperger’s disease isn’t just a ‘male condition’

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Women are often better able to adapt and mimic social cues - but it's exhausting trying to play a game when you don't know the rules.

Women are often better able to adapt and mimic social cues – but it’s exhausting trying to play a game when you don’t know the rules. Photo: stocksy

There is a calm that comes with truly knowing yourself. It’s a quietness I have only recently encountered after 27 years of noise.

The noise came to a deafening crescendo on a holiday to New York last year. I’d been looking forward to the trip immensely, but I wasn’t able to enjoy myself when I got there. The smell of garbage made me want to throw up, the bright lights gave me a pounding headache, and the sound of traffic made me feel disorientated and overwhelmed. I didn’t sleep more than two hours in three nights.

When I got home I started looking up ‘light sensitivity’ and ‘sensory overload’, and when I read the symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome I cried for three days. Everything I had struggled with my entire life was summed up in a dozen dot points. Asperger’s is part of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and I was officially diagnosed at the beginning of this year.

Of everything I have read about ‘aspies’, the most important piece of information I have taken away is this: when you meet one person with Asperger’s Syndrome, you’ve met one person with Asperger’s Syndrome. According to Autism Awareness Australia, one in 100 people is diagnosed on the autism spectrum. So right now that’s more than 230,000 people in Australia. This is only one story.

As a child I had an intense love of reading and would often mourn the end of a good book, as it signalled my reluctant return to real life. I lacked the nuance necessary to succeed in precarious female friendships and often found myself on the outer. Who could have known that young girls would not like having their flaws pointed out right to their faces? It seemed perfectly logical for me to tell Samantha* she was bad at math and had a big nose in grade two, because both of those things were true.

But it wasn’t long before I learned the art of imitation as a survival technique. I took part as an observer, a mimic. This continued through to high school where I discovered the sweet release of alcohol. This magical liquid gave me the ability to converse freely, to live in the moment and to take a break from my own mind.

Unfortunately I had two settings when it came to alcohol – drinking and black out drunk. I drank not for enjoyment, but to feel like a ‘normal’, fun, social person. Vodka was liquid courage. If a little bit gave me a little courage, then a lot would give me a lot of courage right? But really, while drinking helped to ease social anxieties in the moment, it in turn made those anxieties worse.

Alcohol and I are now more like old school friends than codependent lovers. We run into each other a couple of times a year, but no longer have anything left to talk about.

There were many years of this before New York, when I finally started to connect the dots.

Heightened sensitivity to light and sound? Check. Fixated with numbers, terrible with social settings? Check, check. Deep love of animals and nature? Check, check. Trouble making eye contact? Check. I am also obsessive about being on time, and I hate surprises so much I have to Google the ending of a movie and read the last page of a book first. I suffer social hangovers and regularly need time to myself in a quiet place.

Asperger’s has typically been considered a ‘male’ condition, with a ratio of 4:1 males diagnosed compared to females, but as my psychologist explained, this is because females are often better able to adapt and mimic social cues, just like I did, to seem ‘normal’. But it’s exhausting trying to keep up and play a game when you don’t know the rules.

Since my diagnosis I feel more myself. The missing puzzle piece has slotted into place and I feel authentic rather than defective. This is worth so much more than ‘normal’. In telling people, I’ve been met with different reactions, from the deeply supportive, to the non-believers and minimisers. “You’re just a little quirky,” some have exclaimed. I’m not a Zooey Deschanel character though; I was born with a complex neurological condition.

I guess the misunderstanding comes because I am not what people expect when they hear the word autism. I’ve been a journalist for the past six years, I’m married and I love being around my friends and family. That’s the thing about a spectrum though, it’s made up of a rainbow of different colours.

Autism Spectrum Australia explains: “The word ‘spectrum’ describes the range of difficulties that people with autism may experience and the degree to which they may be affected. Some people may be able to live relatively normal lives, while others may have an accompanying learning disability and require continued specialist support.”

Tomorrow (April 2) I’ll be dressing in blue and doing my part to raise awareness for World Autism Awareness Day. Visit autismawareness.com.au or autismspectrum.org.au to find out more.

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Henry Sapiecha

Australian biomedical engineering team builds Google Maps for the body as this video report reveals

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Biomedical engineer Melissa Knothe Tate's team have invented a Google Maps for the body.

Biomedical engineer Melissa Knothe Tate’s team have invented a Google Maps for the body.

Google’s mapping technologies quite literally open our eyes to the whole world. With the click of a mouse, you can zoom from a view of the world to a view of a country, then a city, a street, even a house.

Now the same kind of mapping can be achieved on the human body.

On Sunday, UNSW biomedical engineer Professor Melissa Knothe Tate announced at a conference in the US a new imaging technology that allows researchers, and eventually clinicians, to view an entire organ or bone before zooming down to an individual cell in that tissue.

“This is the first Google Maps of the human body,” she said.

Many diseases can start with damage to individual cells.

“It all starts with a single cell and then through the confluence of events we get global disaster,” said Professor Knothe Tate, the Paul Trainor Chair of Biomedical Engineering.

Her team have used the new technology to explore the human hip joint and the development of osteoarthritis, the leading cause of disability in ageing adults.

For the first time they were able to tie malfunction in individual cells to the condition. Other research teams at Harvard University and Heidelberg University in Germany are using the imaging to map neural paths in mice brains.

The technology offers several medical advantages: clinicians will be able to identify damage to an organ earlier and potentially prevent further progression of the condition.

Future research could also reverse the deterioration of tissues, said Professor Knothe Tate.

“This could open the door to as yet unknown new therapies and preventions,” she said.

The imaging technology was originally invented for the computer industry by German optical and industrial measurement manufacturer, Zeiss.

In 2011, while working in Germany, Professor Knothe Tate sat next to a Zeiss worker while on a bus home from a scientific meeting. When she explained her work the man mentioned his company’s “top secret” technology – known as the rapid throughput electron microscopy imaging system – that had been developed to quickly assess the quality of silicon wafers widely used by the electronics industry.

“He asked me whether I could imagine some applications [of this technology] in the life sciences sector,” she said.

“I answered immediately that I could think of about 10.”

From there the company teamed up with Professor Knothe Tate and other international researchers to apply this sophisticated microscopy to produce images over different length scales, from centimetres-long human joints to nanometre-sized molecules inside a single cell inhabiting the tissue. Using Google Maps algorithms the team then crunches enormous data-sets to allow researchers, and the public, to zoom in and out of the images.

“This is something we’ve dreamed about doing,” she said.

Previously, visualising body parts over different length scales meant using different imaging techniques and bridging them together.

Professor Knothe Tate presented the new technology at the Orthopedic Research Society meeting in Las Vegas on Sunday.
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Henry Sapiecha