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New skin patch for peanut allergy found beneficial for children

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New York, Oct 27 : Researchers have come up with a new wearable patch for skin that claims to treat children and young adults with peanut allergy, finds a study.

The study, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, suggested that small amounts of peanut protein through the skin showed promising benefits for younger children.

The treatment, called epicutaneous immunotherapy or EPIT, was safe and well-tolerated, and nearly all participants used the skin patch daily as directed.

“To avoid potentially life-threatening allergic reactions, people with peanut allergy must be vigilant about the foods they eat and the environments they enter, which can be very stressful,” said Anthony S. Fauci, Managing Director, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

The researchers randomly assigned 74 peanut-allergic volunteers aged 4 to 25 years to treatment with either a high-dose (250 micrograms peanut protein), low-dose (100 micrograms peanut protein), or placebo patch.

Each day, study participants applied a new patch to their arm or between their shoulder blades.

After one year, researchers assessed each participant’s ability to consume at least 10 times more peanut protein than he or she was able to consume before starting EPIT.

The low-dose and high-dose regimens offered similar benefits, with 46 per cent of the low-dose group and 48 per cent of the high-dose group achieving treatment success, compared with 12 per cent of the placebo group.

In addition, the peanut patches induced immune responses similar to those seen with other investigational forms of immunotherapy for food allergy. Investigators observed greater treatment effects among children aged 4 to 11 years, with significantly less effect in participants aged 12 years and older.

“Epicutaneous immunotherapy aims to engage the immune system in the skin to train the body to tolerate small amounts of allergen, whereas other recent advances have relied on an oral route that appears difficult for approximately 10 to 15 per cent of children and adults to tolerate,” said Daniel Rotrosen, Director, Division of Allergy, Immunology and Transplantation at the of NIAID.

Nearly all of the study participants followed the EPIT regimen as directed. None reported serious reactions to the patch, although most experienced mild skin reactions, such as itching or rash at the site of patch application.

The patches were developed and provided by the biopharmaceutical company DBV Technologies under the trade name Viaskin.

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New skin-like sensor maps blood-oxygen levels in body

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New York, 08 November 2018 : US engineers have developed a new lightweight, thin and flexible sensor that can map blood-oxygen levels over large areas of skin, tissue and organs, potentially giving doctors a new way to monitor healing wounds in real time.

Injuries cannot heal without a constant influx of blood’s key ingredient — oxygen. The device can track oxygenation of healing wounds in real time.

The sensor is made of organic electronics printed on bendable plastic that moulds to the contours of the body and can be placed anywhere on the skin.

It could potentially be used to map oxygenation of skin grafts, or to look through the skin to monitor oxygen levels in transplanted organs, the researchers said.

“All medical applications that use oxygen monitoring could benefit from a wearable sensor,” said Ana Claudia Arias, Professor at the University of California (UC)- Berkeley .

“Patients with diabetes, respiration diseases and even sleep apnoea could use a sensor that could be worn anywhere to monitor blood-oxygen levels 24/7,” she added.

Existing oximeters (the name for blood-oxygen sensors) use LEDs to shine red and near-infrared light through the skin, and work only on areas of the body that are partially transparent, like the fingertips or the earlobes. It can only measure blood-oxygen levels at a single point in the body.

“Thick regions of the body, such as the forehead, arms and legs, barely pass visible or near-infrared light, which makes measuring oxygenation at these locations really challenging,” the researchers said.

The new sensor, described in the journal PNAS, is built of an array of alternating red and near-infrared organic LEDs and organic photodiodes printed on a flexible material.

The team used the sensor to track the overall blood-oxygen levels on the forehead of a volunteer who breathed air with progressively lower concentrations of oxygen — similar to going up in altitude — and found that it matched those using a standard fingertip oximeter.

They also used the sensor to map blood-oxygen levels in a three-by-three grid on the forearm of a volunteer wearing a pressure cuff.

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The Importance of Strength Training

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Strength Training

Strength training as a form of exercise gets little to no attention compared to cardiovascular training.Most people know that walking or riding their bike is an essential part of maintaining good health; strength training is often acknowledged as a beneficial thing to do for optimal health, but not essential enough to regularly incorporate into their exercise routine.

Strength training, by definition, is a concerted effort to use resistance or weights to work a muscle group.Many people falsely believe that being active, such as standing and moving during a shift at work, or doing house work, is enough effort to keep muscles healthy and strong.Being active is beneficial to the body, but it takes a focused effort to work muscles by either using weights, or your own body weight, to get the benefits of strength training.

The benefits of strength training are much too important to omit when committing to a healthy lifestyle, and many of these benefits cannot be accomplished with cardiovascular training alone.A well-designed strength-training program can provide the following benefits…

Smile Verma
Fitness&Nutritoon expert.

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Smokers with diabetes more at risk of early death : Study

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New York, Nov 23 : Heavy smokers with diabetes may be at double the risk of facing an early death, a study led by an Indian-origin researcher has found.

Diabetes is a chronic illness in which there are high levels of glucose in the blood. People with diabetes may also be at risk for numerous other health complications.

“The study found that diabetes doubles the risk for all-cause mortality and non-lung cancer mortality among heavy smokers,” said Kavita Garg, Professor at the University of Colorado-Denver, in the US.

In the study, nearly 13 per cent of patients with diabetes died as compared to 6.8 per cent of patients without diabetes.

Participants with diabetes tended to be older, reported more pack-years of smoking, and had a higher BMI than those without diabetes.

In addition, the study also found that women with diabetes have an increased risk of lung-cancer mortality.

However, the same effect was not found in men, the researchers observed.

For the study, Garg and colleagues conducted an analysis on 53,454 participants from US on the relative risk for overall mortality, lung cancer mortality, and non-lung cancer mortality associated with diabetes.

Over the course of the study, there were 3,936 total deaths, including 1,021 from lung cancer and 826 from non-lung cancers.

Garg emphasised that smokers should undergo lung cancer screening as well control their diabetes.

“Patients have to take care of their diabetes to maximise the benefit of CT screening for lung cancer. It truly makes a magnitude of difference in mortality risk,” Garg noted.

The study will be presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) in Chicago, US

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