Vidyya Medical News Service
Volume 5 Issue 343 Published - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 9-Dec-2003 Next Update - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 10-Dec-2003
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Early treatment of blinding eye disease in infants can prevent severe vision loss
An important clinical trial, sponsored by the National Eye Institute (NEI), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has provided doctors with improved prognostic indicators and treatment options for retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), a blinding disease that affects premature, low birthweight infants. ROP spurs the growth of abnormal blood vessels in the back of the eye. These vessels leak fluid and blood and scar the nerve tissue inside the eye, increasing the risk of retinal detachment and severe vision loss in infants.  more

FDA converts gleevec in second line setting to regular approval
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today granted Gleevec regular approval as a second line treatment for refractory Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML), a rare life threatening from of cancer-affecting about 40,000 people in the United States.  more


Prescribing information: Gleevec tablets
Gleevec is indicated for the treatment of newly diagnosed adult patients with Ph+ CML in chronic phase. Follow-up is limited. Gleevec is also indicated for the treatment of patients with Ph+ CML in blast crisis, in accelerated phase, or in chronic phase after failure of IFN-a therapy. Gleevec is also indicated for the treatment of pediatric patients with Ph+ CML in chronic phase whose disease has recurred after SCT or who are resistant to IFN-a therapy. There are no controlled trials demonstrating a clinical benefit, such as improvement in disease-related symptoms or increased survival, in patients with CML in blast crisis, accelerated phase, or chronic phase after failure of IFN-a. Gleevec is also indicated for the treatment of patients with Kit (CD117)-positive unresectable and/or metastatic malignant gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST). The effectiveness of Gleevec in GIST is based on objective response rate. A new study to be presented at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) 45th Annual Meeting on Monday, Dec. 8, sheds light on the question. more

U.S. researchers successfully test SARS vaccine
Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta have found that an adenoviral-based-vaccine can induce t-cells and antibodies against severe acute respiratory syndrome. The findings, the first published work on a SARS vaccine, are reported in a research letter in the Dec. 6 issue of The Lancet.  more

WHO plan urges anti-fat tax policies
In a draft strategy on diet, exercise and health distributed Wednesday, the World Health Organization recommended that governments consider using taxes to discourage people from eating too much sugar, salt and saturated fat. more

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