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Health - Pharmacology - 23.03.2023
Any type of hormonal contraceptive may increase risk of breast cancer
An analysis of data by researchers at Oxford Population Health's Cancer Epidemiology Unit has shown that use of progestogen-only hormonal contraceptives is associated with a 20-30% higher risk of breast cancer. The results are published in PLOS Medicine . Previous studies have shown that use of the combined contraceptive pill, which combines oestrogen and progestogen, is associated with a small increase in the risk of developing breast cancer that declines after stopping use.

Pharmacology - Health - 23.03.2023
Preventing cancer relapse with a genetic test
Date Scientists have found a new way to predict which myeloma patients will benefit the most from a treatment often used to help keep the blood cancer from coming back after a stem cell transplant. For people with certain high-risk genetic features in their cancer cells, the drug, called lenalidomide, cut their risk of seeing their cancer progress or dying by up to 40-fold.

Life Sciences - Pharmacology - 21.03.2023
Advanced brain imaging study hints at how DMT alters perception of reality
Advanced brain imaging study hints at how DMT alters perception of reality
Scientists have gleaned new insights into how psychedelics alter conscious experience via their action on brain activity. In a study at Imperial College London, detailed brain imaging data from 20 healthy volunteers revealed how the potent psychedelic compound, DMT (dimethyltryptamine), alters brain function.

Health - Pharmacology - 20.03.2023
Underactive immune response may explain obesity link to COVID-19 severity
Underactive immune response may explain obesity link to COVID-19 severity
Individuals who are obese may be more susceptible to severe COVID-19 because of a poorer inflammatory immune response, say Cambridge scientists. During the pandemic, the majority of younger patients I saw on the COVID wards were obese. I would have said that it was most likely due to excessive inflammation.

Health - Pharmacology - 13.03.2023
Test for spiking to reduce psychological distress
A review of the evidence into the psychological impacts of spiking highlights that victims of suspected attacks are not routinely tested for drugs or alcohol. More should be done to help victims of suspected spiking attacks process the psychological trauma of the event by testing patients who arrive in hospital intoxicated by drink or drunks, say the authors of a new study.

Pharmacology - Health - 13.03.2023
New drug to lower brain pressure could treat blinding IIH headaches, trial finds
Phase two trial saw significant reduction in pressure in the brain and monthly headaches Patients with 'blinding' headaches known as Idiopathic Intercranial Hypertension (IIH) could be treated with an injectable peptide used for type 2 diabetes, a new trial has found. The study, published in the journal Brain , today reports on a phase two trial of a drug called exenatide, a GLP-1 receptor agonist, as a potential treatment for IIH.

Health - Pharmacology - 06.03.2023
Reluctance to prescribe medication risks the health of pregnant women
Reluctance to prescribe medication risks the health of pregnant women
An unwillingness among healthcare professionals to prescribe and dispense otherwise recommended medications is putting the health and lives of pregnant women at risk, finds a new study involving a UCL researcher. The research, published in BMJ Open and involving researchers at UCL, the Centre for Reproductive Research & Communication at BPAS, Cardiff University, and Pregnancy Sickness Support, highlights the experiences of women whose pharmacists had refused to dispense prescriptions made by their GP.

Health - Pharmacology - 02.03.2023
Genetic test could guide use of cancer chemotherapy
A genetic test already used routinely in the NHS can guide the use of chemotherapy in people with bowel cancer, new research has shown. Researchers from Imperial College London, the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) and the Netherlands Cancer Institute , found that the test can predict whether a bowel cancer patient will benefit from chemotherapy.

Health - Pharmacology - 01.03.2023
Women’s health at risk from reluctance to prescribe medicine during pregnancy
Research has found that a reluctance among healthcare professionals to prescribe and dispense medications to women who are pregnant is placing their health at risk. The study conducted by researchers at the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, Cardiff University, Pregnancy Sickness Support, and University College London, found that while prescribers need to balance maternal benefit with potential foetal harm when prescribing in pregnancy, women's individual circumstances were not always considered, and they were not fully engaged in decision making.

Health - Pharmacology - 22.02.2023
Analysis: Three in five long COVID patients have organ damage a year after infection
Analysis: Three in five long COVID patients have organ damage a year after infection
Professor Amitava Banerjee (UCL Institute of Health Informatics) describes in The Conversation his team's recent research finding that 59 percent of long Covid patients suffered organ damage, even in individuals with less-severe initial infections. The latest data from the Office for National Statistics suggests that more than 1.2 million people in the UK report living with long COVID for 12 months or more.

Health - Pharmacology - 21.02.2023
First heart patients diagnosed using new fibre optic technology
First heart patients diagnosed using new fibre optic technology
A new diagnostic technology, developed by scientists at UCL, that uses tiny fibre optic sensors to detect the causes of heart disease, more quickly and accurately than existing methods, has been used for the first time in patients. The iKOr device uses an ultra-thin microcatheter integrated with fibre optic sensors and allows doctors to check both blood pressure and blood flow around the heart and look for signs of narrowing and thickening of the arteries - a common sign of disease.

Pharmacology - Health - 16.02.2023
Pharmacists based in care homes make them safer for residents
Basing specialist pharmacists in care homes can help make residents safer by cutting potential harm from medicines, according to research carried out by University of Leeds academics. The Care Home Independent Pharmacist Prescriber Study (CHIPPS), which involved researchers in Leeds and across the country, trialled onsite pharmacists in dozens of care homes.

Health - Pharmacology - 13.02.2023
Conundrum solved over HPV link with head and neck cancer
Conundrum solved over HPV link with head and neck cancer
International analysis has found that discordant results between two types of HPV test linked with worse outcomes for patients Patients who have head and neck cancer caused by the human papilloma virus should be double tested, after new research solves puzzle over worsening outcomes among some people.

Pharmacology - Psychology - 08.02.2023
Cannabis has same effect on adolescents and adults, and CBD doesn’t dampen effects
The short-term effects of vaporised cannabis do not differ between adolescents and adults, while cannabidiol (CBD) does not dampen the effects of the drug, finds a new study led by UCL and King's College London researchers. For the experimental study published in Addiction , the researchers measured how regular cannabis users of different ages responded to inhaling cannabis with differing levels of CBD.

Life Sciences - Pharmacology - 04.02.2023
Artificial Intelligence to personalise cancer patient treatments
Artificial Intelligence to personalise cancer patient treatments
Sussex researchers use Artificial Intelligence to personalise cancer patient treatments Researchers at the University of Sussex are using Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to analyse different types of cancer cells to understand different gene dependencies, and to identify genes that are critical to a cell's survival.

Health - Pharmacology - 03.02.2023
Kisspeptin hormone injection could treat low sex drive in women and men
The hormone kisspeptin could be used to treat women and men distressed by their low sexual desire, according to two new studies. The studies, both published in JAMA Network Open , found that giving kisspeptin can boost sexual responses in women and men who have hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) - a condition characterised by low sexual desire that is distressing to the individual.

Health - Pharmacology - 02.02.2023
Combined steroid and statin treatment could reduce ’accelerated ageing’ in preterm babies, study in rats suggests
Potentially life-saving steroids commonly given to preterm babies also increase the risk of long-term cardiovascular problems, but a new study in rats has found that if given in conjunction with statins, their positive effects remain while the potential negative side-effects are -weeded out-. "We are not saying to stop using glucocorticoids, as they are clearly a life-saving treatment.

Health - Pharmacology - 30.01.2023
New study into Tuberculosis membrane molecules will aid drug delivery
A new method to aid in the development of antibiotics for tuberculosis (TB) infections has been devised. TB rivals covid-19 as the biggest infectious disease killer of humans, claiming millions of lives each year. Now, ground-breaking research from the Universities of Warwick and Toulouse has identified a new method to help tackle this global issue.

Pharmacology - Health - 30.01.2023
Major trials to test effectiveness of cannabidiol on psychosis
Major trials to test effectiveness of cannabidiol on psychosis
A global study involving three clinical trials will investigate the effectiveness of cannabidiol (CBD) in treating people with psychosis or psychotic symptoms, thanks to a multi-million pound grant to Oxford University. Wellcome has awarded Oxford's Department of Psychiatry £16.5 million for the STEP (Stratification & Treatment in Early Psychosis) programme, as part of its support for mental health research.

Pharmacology - Health - 27.01.2023
New blood test could save lives of heart attack victims
New blood test could save lives of heart attack victims
Researchers from the Herring group in Oxford's Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics have developed a blood test that measures stress hormone levels after heart attacks. The test - costing just £10 - could ensure patients receive timely life-saving treatment. Cardiovascular disease is the main cause of death in the UK.
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