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August 2008 Briefing - Gastroenterology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Gastroenterology for August 2008. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Lancet Supports WHO Report on Health Inequality

FRIDAY, Aug. 29 (HealthDay News) -- The final report by the World Health Organization's Commission on Social Determinants of Health contains a strong mandate for reducing global inequalities in health care, according to an editorial published in the Aug. 30 issue of The Lancet.

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Estrogen Protects Against Intestinal Acid Injury in Mice

THURSDAY, Aug. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The ability of estrogen to stimulate duodenal mucosal bicarbonate secretion (DMBS), which protects the duodenum against acid-peptic injury, in mice may explain the observed lower incidence of duodenal ulcers in premenopausal women, researchers report in the September issue of Endocrinology.

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Report Reviews Management of Acute Peptic Ulcer Bleeding

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 27 (HealthDay News) -- While the first priority in treating acute upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage is to restore hemodynamic stability, early endoscopy, medical therapy and surgery all may play a role in management, according to a report published in the Aug. 28 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Popcorn, Nuts Not Linked to Diverticular Complications

TUESDAY, Aug. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Nut, corn and popcorn consumption is not associated with an increased risk of diverticular complications, but nut and popcorn consumption is inversely related to risk of development of diverticular disease, according to an article in the Aug. 27 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Esophageal Cancer Incidence Rising Rapidly in US Whites

MONDAY, Aug. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Rates of adenocarcinoma of the esophagus have risen rapidly among white men and women in the United States between 1975 and 2004, researchers report in the Aug. 20 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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A-Type Lamins Linked to Colorectal Cancer Death

FRIDAY, Aug. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Expression of A-type lamins -- which are found in the nuclear lamina that lines inner nuclear membranes -- in colorectal cancer tissue is correlated with mortality from the cancer, and may provide a prognostic biomarker, according to research findings published Aug. 20 in PLoS One.

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Hepatitis B Mutations Linked to Cancer Risk

FRIDAY, Aug. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Viral genotype and common variants in specific regions of the virus are associated with risk of hepatocellular carcinoma in people infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV), according to a report published in the Aug. 20 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Stem Cell Therapy Offers Possibilities for Liver Disease

FRIDAY, Aug. 22 (HealthDay News) -- As transplant waiting times increase, stem cell therapies may offer hope for end-stage liver disease treatment, researchers report in the August issue of Gastroenterology.

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Biomarker Predicts Response in Barrett's Esophagus

FRIDAY, Aug. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Biomarkers may help in the choice of appropriate therapy for Barrett's esophagus and improve treatment outcomes, according to a report in the August issue of Gastroenterology.

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Obesity, Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease Link Reviewed

THURSDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Obesity is clearly associated with the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which may be alleviated by weight loss through caloric restriction or surgery, according to a review in the August issue of the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

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Protein Protects Against Toxin in High-Risk Mice

THURSDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Treating high-risk mice with bacterially produced paraoxonase 1 (PON1) protein, which breaks down toxic compounds such as nerve agents and pesticides, can protect them from high doses of a toxin, according to research published online Aug. 18 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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New Procedure Aids in Reflux Diagnosis

THURSDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Multichannel intraluminal impedance pH testing may identify an etiology in patients with continued reflux symptoms, a negative endoscopy and a negative, standard 24-hour pH test, according to an article published in the August issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Protein Important in Glucose Control in Rats

THURSDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Bone morphogenetic protein-9 (BMP-9) is important in maintaining glucose homeostasis in normal rats and its regulation based on feeding status suggests that it may be the currently unknown hepatic insulin-sensitizing substance (HISS), according to research published online Aug. 14 in Endocrinology.

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Outlook Mixed on US Presidential Candidates' Health Plans

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 20 (HealthDay News) -- The health care plans proposed by John McCain and Barack Obama would have uncertain effects on health care coverage in America, but potential problems with each plan are evident, according to a perspective piece in the Aug. 21 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Seniors Likely to Find Medicare Health Web Site Unusable

TUESDAY, Aug. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Even older adults with computer skills may have difficulty using the Medicare.gov Web site to determine eligibility for services and enroll in a drug plan, according to a research letter published in the Aug. 20 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Chewing Gum Can Speed Intestinal Recovery After Surgery

MONDAY, Aug. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Chewing gum can speed intestinal recovery after abdominal surgery, reducing the time to have a bowel movement and reducing the length of hospital stay, according to study findings published in the August issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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Comorbidities Worsen Fatigue in HIV-Positive Patients

FRIDAY, Aug. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Specific types of comorbidities and increasing numbers of comorbidities worsen fatigue severity and symptom scores in HIV/AIDS patients, and health care providers must be able to identify causes of fatigue to intervene more effectively, according to study findings published in the August issue of Applied Nursing Research.

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Proton Pump Inhibitors Linked to Osteoporotic Fractures

THURSDAY, Aug. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Taking proton pump inhibitors to treat ulcers and gastroesophageal reflux disease for long periods of time is associated with an increased risk of osteoporosis-related fractures, particularly hip fractures, according to a report in the Aug. 12 issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

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Chronic Hepatitis C Linked to Insulin Resistance

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with chronic hepatitis C have a higher risk of developing insulin resistance, which can adversely affect the success of antiviral treatment, according to a review in the August issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Alcohol Problems More Common in Combat-Exposed Soldiers

TUESDAY, Aug. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Among U.S. military service members, Reserve and National Guard personnel who were exposed to combat while deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan face higher risks of alcohol-related problems compared to their non-deployed counterparts, according to research published in the Aug. 13 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Preserved Autophagy Helps Improve Liver Function in Mice

TUESDAY, Aug. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Maintaining the activity of chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA) in mice until late in life is associated with less intracellular accumulation of damaged proteins and improved liver function, according to research published online Aug. 10 in Nature Medicine.

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Therapy Improves Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms

MONDAY, Aug. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Cognitive behavior therapy, either administered by a therapist or self-directed, is associated with improvement of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms, according to research published in the August issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Binding Domain Finding Paves Way for Hepcidin Assay

MONDAY, Aug. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Identification of the hepcidin-binding domain on ferroportin allows for a rapid assay to assess variations in serum hepcidin levels, according to research published in the Aug. 6 issue of Cell Metabolism.

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Perceived Discrimination Affects Cancer Screening

FRIDAY, Aug. 8 (HealthDay News) -- People who felt they'd been discriminated against in a medical setting due to their racial or ethnic background were less likely to be screened for certain cancers, according to an article published online Aug. 6 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

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Valganciclovir May Benefit Liver Transplant Patients

THURSDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In pediatric liver transplant patients who are infected with Epstein-Barr virus, treatment with valganciclovir may help clear the virus and decrease the risk of post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder, according to the results of a study published in the August issue of Liver Transplantation.

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Over 1 Billion U.S. Doctor, Hospital Visits Logged in 2006

THURSDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In 2006, patients made an estimated 1.1 billion visits to physician offices and hospital emergency and outpatient departments in the United States, which was an average of four visits per person, according to health care statistics released Aug. 6 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Novel Nucleoside Analog Suppresses Hepatitis C Virus

THURSDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) -- R1626 -- a novel nucleoside analog -- may significantly reduce hepatitis C virus RNA, either in combination with standard therapy or alone, according to two reports published in the August issue of Hepatology.

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Cannabinoid Receptor Suppresses Colorectal Cancer Growth

MONDAY, Aug. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1), which binds compounds related to marijuana, is important in suppressing the growth of colorectal cancer and may be an important therapeutic target, according to a report in the Aug. 1 issue of Cancer Research.

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Atazanavir/Ritonavir Once-Daily Seen As Advantageous

MONDAY, Aug. 4 (HealthDay News) -- In treatment-naive HIV patients, treatment with atazanavir/ritonavir once-daily is as effective as treatment with lopinavir/ritonavir twice-daily, but its superior side effect profile suggests that it should be the preferred first-line treatment, according to an article published online Aug. 2 in The Lancet.

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International Issue of Torture Complicity Analyzed

FRIDAY, Aug. 1 (HealthDay News) -- More than 100 countries condone the use of torture and have often recruited the medical community as participants without consequence, according to an editorial published online July 31 in BMJ.

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H. pylori Key to Gastric Cancer Recurrence

FRIDAY, Aug. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Eradication of Helicobacter pylori after endoscopic resection to treat early gastric cancer can prevent the development of metachronous gastric carcinoma, according to a study published in the Aug. 2 issue of The Lancet.

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