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Archive for February, 2019

‘Young Blood’ Transfusions Are Mostly Ineffective and Dangerous, FDA Warns

Friday, February 22nd, 2019
The agency has called out ‘unscrupulous actors’ who claim that plasma from young donors can combat everything from natural aging to Parkinson’s disease

Transfusions of blood plasma are used to treat a host of medical conditions, including burns, surgery-induced blood loss, and disorders that prevent a person’s blood from clotting properly. But as Live Science’s Rachael Rettner reports, the Food and Drug Administration has raised the alarm about companies that purport to use blood plasma—specifically the blood of young donors—to combat the effects of aging and several severe ailments.

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Scientists Find a Possible Connection Between Gut Bacteria and Depression

Friday, February 22nd, 2019
A new report identifies bacteria in the microbiome that could produce neurotransmitters and potentially influence activity in the brain cells

The human microbiome—a collection of bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses commingling in the gut and intestines—has been linked to a wide range of human health conditions, including digestive health and the prevention of autoimmune diseases. Some research has even identified a possible link between gut health and brain function. Building on this work, a study published yesterday in Nature Microbiology reveals that clinical depression could be affected by the amounts of certain bacteria in the gut.

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Melbourne Australian 54 year old father of two travels to Switzerland to end his life

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

Troy Thornton says he would have preferred to die at home but Victoria’s assisted dying laws − which come into effect only just this year − would not have allowed it.

Troy Thornton with his wife and two children on a family holiday.
Supplied

Retired Melbourne firefighter Troy Thornton is a long way from home.

And he won’t be returning from Europe after deciding to end his life in Switzerland on Friday.

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Gene therapy procedure to save eyesight

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

Surgeons in the UK have performed a pioneering gene therapy operation to tackle age-related macular degeneration, the most common cause of sight loss.

Surgeons in Btitain have claimed a world first after carrying out a gene therapy operation to tackle the most common cause of sight loss in the developed world.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) causes the deterioration of cells in the macular, the central part of the retina, and affects more than 600,000 people in the UK alone.

Medicos at the John Radcliffe Hospital said their pioneering operation could have a real impact on the quality of life and independence of those who suffer from AMD.

The operation involves detaching the retina and injecting a solution containing a virus underneath.

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Sydney man who contracted rat lung-worm after eating slug dies

Thursday, February 21st, 2019

SAM Ballard never did anything wrong, if you ask family and friends.

The teenager from Sydney’s upper north shore was having a laugh and some red wine with mates in the backyard, “trying to act like grown ups”.

It was 2010 and it was a night that would change the 19-year-old’s life, and the lives of everybody around him, forever.

A slug crawled across the concrete patio and, teens being teens, a dare emerged for Sam to eat it.

One of his best friends, Jimmy Galvin, later described the moment.

“We were sitting over here having a bit of a red wine appreciation night, trying to act as grown up and a slug came crawling across here,” he said.

“The conversation came up, you know. ‘Should I eat it?’ And off Sam went. Bang. That’s how it happened.”

Sam Ballard was infected with rat lungworm after eating a slug in 2010.

Sam Ballard and his maes.

He didn’t become sick immediately, but complained of serious pain in his legs in the days after.

He was worried it might’ve been a symptom of eating the slug, but his mother told him not to worry: “No-one gets sick from that,” she said.

Sam was worried he might have developed Multiple sclerosis, like his father, but that was ruled out.

Doctors later determined Sam was infected with rat lungworm.

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