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December 2008 Briefing - Pathology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Pathology for December 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.

Common Gene Variants Linked to High Blood Pressure

TUESDAY, Dec. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Common variants in a serine/threonine kinase gene -- STK39 -- which regulates the kidneys' excretion of salt, may be associated with an increased risk of hypertension, according to a study published online Dec. 29 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Higher Breast Cancer Risk from Hormone Therapy

TUESDAY, Dec. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term use of certain types of hormone replacement therapy is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer, according to two studies published in the January issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Valve Prosthesis Mismatch Linked to Increased Mortality

TUESDAY, Dec. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Mismatches between valve prostheses and patients may lead to increased late overall mortality and cardiovascular mortality, according to research published in the Jan. 6 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Masseteric Muscle Hypertrophy Treated with Botulinum Toxin

MONDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Botulinum toxin (BoNT) type A is a new, safe and effective non-invasive therapy for treatment of masseteric muscle hypertrophy to obtain lower facial contouring, according to research published in the November issue of the Journal of Craniofacial Surgery.

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Woman and Dog Infected with Bovine Tuberculosis

MONDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- A woman and her dog were infected with bovine tuberculosis, demonstrating that human infection with the bacterium can still occur, according to a case report in the January issue of Thorax.

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HIV Therapy May Affect Human Papillomavirus

MONDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- In HIV-infected women with pre-existing abnormal cervical cytology, highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) may enhance clearance of human papillomavirus (HPV) in those who already have cervical disease, according to research published in the January issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Inorganic Phosphate Linked to Lung Cancer

MONDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- High dietary levels of inorganic phosphate promotes lung tumorigenesis and altered activation of the pro-survival signaling pathway controlled by the Akt protein, according to research published in the January issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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Genetics Linked to Increased Lung Cancer Risk

FRIDAY, Dec. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Two common polymorphisms in the 3' untranslated regions of adenosine triphosphate-binding cassette B1 and C1 (ABCB1 and ABCC1) are linked to a greater risk of developing lung cancer, according to research published online Dec. 23 in Cancer.

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Covariance Network Analysis Predicts Hepatitis Outcomes

FRIDAY, Dec. 26 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with hepatitis C infection, analyzing genome-wide virus amino acid covariance networks can predict response to treatment with interferon-alpha and ribavirin, according to a report published online Dec. 22 in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

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Increasing HDL Level Linked to Lower Heart Disease Risk

FRIDAY, Dec. 26 (HealthDay News) -- In apparently healthy men, an increasing level of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is associated with a significantly decreased risk of coronary heart disease, according to study findings published in the Dec. 15 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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Pathway Inhibited in Myeloproliferative Disorders

THURSDAY, Dec. 25 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with myeloproliferative disorders, inhibition of the Bcl-xL deamidation pathway may increase DNA damage and the risk of progression to acute leukemia, according to study findings published in the Dec. 25 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Genetic Factors, Alcohol Use Linked to Colorectal Tumors

TUESDAY, Dec. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Heavy users of alcohol who are homozygous for the alcohol dehydrogenase 1C (ADH1C*1) allele appear to be more likely to develop high-risk adenomas and colorectal cancer, according to research published in the January issue of Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.

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Gene Variant Linked to Clopidogrel Susceptibility

TUESDAY, Dec. 23 (HealthDay News) -- In younger patients who have had a heart attack and are taking the anti-platelet drug Plavix (clopidogrel), a variant of a liver enzyme responsible for converting the drug to its active form is an independent predictor of cardiovascular events, according to research published online Dec. 22 in the New England Journal of Medicine and Dec. 23 in The Lancet.

Abstract - Collet
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Lung Pathway Protects Against Cigarette Damage

TUESDAY, Dec. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Activating a pathway that protects against oxidative damage in the lungs protects the lungs of mice chronically exposed to cigarette smoke, and may be important in preventing emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), according to a study published online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Enzymes Predict Survival in Ovarian Cancer

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17 (HealthDay News) -- The levels of two enzymes that process microRNAs (miRNAs), which regulate gene expression, can predict survival in women with ovarian cancer, researchers report in the Dec. 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Chromosomal Abnormalities Increase with Flying Time

MONDAY, Dec. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Pilots who have a long history of flying have an increased frequency of chromosome translocation compared to pilots having a shorter history, according to research published online Dec. 11 in the journal Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

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Thirty Genetic Loci Linked to Lipoprotein Levels

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10 (HealthDay News) -- An additional 11 loci associated with variations in lipoprotein levels have been identified, bringing the total to 30, according to study findings published online Dec. 7 in Nature Genetics.

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Long-Term Antioxidant Use Does Not Prevent Cancer

TUESDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Antioxidant supplementation, specifically with selenium or vitamins C and E, has no role in cancer prevention, according to results of two separate studies published online Dec. 9 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Malaria Vaccine Proves to Be Safe and Effective

MONDAY, Dec. 8 (HealthDay News) -- RTS,S shows promise as a safe and effective malaria vaccine, and artesunate can be a useful malaria treatment, according to several studies published online Dec. 8 in the New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet.

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Brain Pathway Activated by Weight-Loss Drug Identified

THURSDAY, Dec. 4 (HealthDay News) -- The brain receptor activated by the weight-loss drug fen-phen, which was withdrawn from the market in the 1990s due to toxic side effects, plays an important role in food intake and energy balance, and its presence on neurons in the hypothalamus is particularly important, according to research published in the Nov. 26 issue of Neuron. The findings could help researchers develop safer weight-loss drugs.

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Denmark's Down Syndrome Births Halved By Screening

MONDAY, Dec. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Since Denmark introduced national combined risk assessment for Down syndrome in 2004, the number of infants born with Down syndrome has dropped by half, according to research published Nov. 27 in BMJ Online First.

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