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Potential for Fundamental Change in the Treatment of Brain Cancer – BioSpace

SYDNEY, Australia, Oct. 18, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Noxopharm (ASX: NOX) announces that it will apply its glutamate-inhibition technology to the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).

GBM remains a poorly managed cancer, with surgery, radiotherapy and the chemotherapy drug, temozolomide, the current standard of care, offering median survival of only 12-15 months.

Recent research now has confirmed that brain chemical, glutamate, is playing a key role in driving the aggressive nature of GBM growth.1,2

Glutamate is an important brain chemical, triggering passage of electrical impulses between brain cells. These chemicals are known as neurotransmitters. Glutamate is the brains main neurotransmitter, with important roles in learning and memory.

GBM cancer cells now have been shown to be connected to brain cells (neurons) that are feeding glutamate into the tumour, driving growth of the cancer cells.1

As a result of a collaboration with UNSW Sydney in 2016, Noxopharm already has drugs in its chemical library that are selective glutamate-inhibitors. This proprietary intellectual property centred on a search for a drug capable of protecting the brain from glutamate-associated brain damage following a stroke or severe concussion.

Noxopharm already has a number of potential lead candidates, which puts it well-placed to expedite the path to the clinic.

Dr Graham Kelly, Noxopharm Executive Chairman, said, This is an exciting opportunity that we believe we lead the world on. Its early stage with many questions yet to be answered, but if we are successful, then we see this approach as potentially having the same benefit as blocking the way sex hormones drive the growth of breast cancer and prostate cancer. If anti-hormone therapy can deliver very significant survival benefits with highly aggressive forms of breast cancer and prostate cancer, then we see no reason why blocking glutamate function cannot deliver the same benefit for patients with GBM.

A key challenge will be to limit a glutamate-blocking effect just to the tumour. A drug that blocks glutamate function in the brain generally would be far too toxic. Our compounds appear to work specifically where there is glutamate over-dose and have been well tolerated in animals to date. This is what we believe gives us a major competitive edge in what seems likely to be a major new area of drug development.

The Companys primary focus remains on Veyondaand bringing it through the clinic and to market for the treatment of late-stage prostate cancer using its DARRT and LuPIN treatment regimens. The glutamate-inhibition program becomes the Companys second pipeline drug program but will be secondary to the Veyondaprogram.

References:1. Venkataramani V et al (2019) Nature 573, 532-538.2. Ye ZC, Sontheimer H. (1999) Cancer Res 59, 4383-4391.

About GBMGlioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common and most aggressive of the primary brain tumors. Patients with GBM present with symptoms such as headache and seizure often late in the disease when the tumour has become well-established and inoperable. As a result, the median survival is very short at about 12 months.

About GlutamateGlutamate (glutamic acid) is a neurotransmitter that brain cells use to pass signals, including electrical impulses, between cells. It is important in learning and memory and is the dominant neurotransmitter in the brain and spinal cord. Glutamate works by increasing the entry of ions such as calcium into receiving nerve cells. Excessive amounts of glutamate lead to toxic amounts of calcium entering the cell, resulting in over-stimulation and death of healthy brain cells in a process known as excitotoxicity.

About NoxopharmNoxopharm is a clinical-stage Australian drug development company with offices in Sydney and New York. The Company has a primary focus on the development of Veyondaand is the major shareholder in Nyrada Inc, a spin-off company developing a pipeline of non-oncology drugs.

Forward Looking StatementsThis announcement may contain forward-looking statements. You can identify these statements by the fact they use words such as aim, anticipate, assume, believe, continue, could, estimate, expect, intend, may, plan, predict, project, plan, should, target, will or would or the negative of such terms or other similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are based on estimates, projections and assumptions made by Noxopharm about circumstances and events that have not yet taken place. Although Noxopharm believes the forward-looking statements to be reasonable, they are not certain. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that are in some cases beyond the Companys control that could cause the actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statement. No representation, warranty or assurance (express or implied) is given or made by Noxopharm that the forward-looking statements contained in this announcement are accurate and undue reliance should not be placed upon such statements.

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Expert witness in trial of 7-year-olds transition downplays dangers of cross-sex hormone therapy – Lifesite

TEXAS, October 17, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) A pediatric endocrinologist who specializes in transgenderism and medical transitions took the stand yesterday in the case of James Younger, theseven-year-old whose mother wants to transition him to a girl. His father, Jeffrey Younger, is trying to stop his ex-wife from doing this.

James mother is Anne Georgulas, a pediatrician.

Dr. Daniel Schumer, the endocrinologist, explained the process of a medical transition, which begins with puberty blockers and eventually can lead to cross-sex hormone therapy. He said that a child who has reached puberty should be given puberty blockers if his or her bodys natural development would cause significant distress.

The point of puberty blockers is to delay the decision making around things that like [gender identity] until the child is older, he said.

Dr. Schumer clarified that starting puberty blockers does not necessarily lead to cross-sex hormone therapy. Dr. Schumer stated that puberty blockers are meant to buy time for children to develop their understanding of gender and develop increased maturity before making the decision to take hormones to make them more like the opposite sex.

When questioned by Mr. Odeneal, Mr. Youngers attorney, and the amicus attorney about the side effects of these drugs, Dr. Schumer claimed they are no different than the normal side effects of puberty for the sex of the desired gender.

Risks with estrogen [are] similar to risks of a female going through puberty.The majority of effects of testosterone or estrogen are similar to puberty.

According to the Mayo Clinic, the side effects of feminizing hormone therapy include:

Dr. Schumer denied that cross-sex hormone therapy leads to any significant side effects. There is a host of evidence that suggests otherwise, and a growing community of people who have de-transitioned back to their real sex.

Follow all LifeSiteNews coverage of the James Younger casehere.

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Expert witness in trial of 7-year-olds transition downplays dangers of cross-sex hormone therapy - Lifesite

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HUM Nutrition Launches Mighty Night, the first skin cell renewal supplement specifically formulated to optimize beauty sleep from within. – PRNewswire

Mighty Night uses clean, clinically proven ingredients in effective dosages that work while you sleep resulting in a fresh complexion each morning. The proprietary formula boosts overnight renewal by supporting skin cell turnover, scavenging free radicals, promoting optimal sleep and improving skin texture.

During sleep, the body produces more collagen and melatonin both known to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Levels of the stress hormone cortisol fall during sleep, which helps skin to repair daytime damage. And, the human growth hormone, responsible for accelerating skin's repair and cell regeneration, is released during sleep.

Mighty Night ingredients include Ubiquinol, the most absorbable form of CoQ10 which protects the skin cell's membrane and supports overall renewal; Ceramides to lock in moisture and boost elasticity; Ferulic Acid proven to scavenge free radicals; and, a clinically studied combination of Valerian Root, Hops and Passion Flower that helps to promote optimal sleep.

"Sleep is when your skin repairs itself, grows new cells and fortifies against moisture loss and free radical damage. Valerian Root and Hops are two herbs I recommend for better sleep quality, which is critical for overnight recovery," says Dr. Breus PHD, aka The Sleep Doctor.

Dermatologist Dr. Julie Russak of the Russak Dermatology Clinic in New York says: "Ferulic acid and ceramides offer skin benefits while you sleep by improving the protective barrier of skin and strengthening it. When our skin barrier is at its optimal state, we appear healthier. HUM's Mighty Night is a responsibly sourced, multi-beneficial supplement I trust and recommend to my patients."

Mighty Night is available at and beginning October 18th. It retails for $40 for a 30-day supply (60 capsules) and is vegan, vegetarian, Non-GMO, gluten-free and sustainably sourced.

Take 2 at bedtime and expect results in 4 to 6 weeks. Here's to a peaceful beauty rest, Sleeping Beauty.

Press Contact:Shauna

About HUM NutritionHUM Nutrition, the leading beauty supplement company, revolutionized an entire industry by successfully merging beauty and wellness. By completing the beauty routine from within, HUM initiated a movement that has inspired over half a million people to lead healthier lifestyles and retailers to create a new category. HUM has reinvented every touch point of the vitamin experience starting with a proprietary online quiz that pairs consumers with curated product recommendations and a personal Registered Dietitian. HUM's innovative range addresses ultra-specific beauty concerns. Every formulation is rooted in clinical research, and ingredients are carefully sourced and triple tested by independent labs for quality and purity. HUM's appealing brand resonates like no other with today's consumers and its distinct color-coded packaging and friendly tone has successfully removed the often-intimidating barrier to vitamins and supplements. For more information, visit and follow @HumNutrition.

SOURCE HUM Nutrition

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HUM Nutrition Launches Mighty Night, the first skin cell renewal supplement specifically formulated to optimize beauty sleep from within. - PRNewswire

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Richardson Pain & Wellness Offering Testosterone Replacement Therapy, Male Hormone Replacement Therapy, Medically Assisted Weight Loss, and…

You may want to sort out your chronic pain, look and feel younger, or maybe you would like to increase your energy level so you can pursue your goals.

Well, thankfully the team at Richardson Pain & Wellness is ready and able to help you do it, their doctors have many years of experience with custom-made wellness plans suited to each patients individual needs and wants, ensuring that they not only feel renewed in our office but for many years to come. All you have to do is set up an appointment with one of the doctors, and they will help you get started and create a plan to suit your needs and interests.

The pain clinic Richardson offers testosterone replacement therapy and hormone replacement therapy at Richardson. If tests show that you do have low T and you notice the condition taking over your life, then you should consider hormone replacement therapy in Richardson to supplement the bodys production of testosterone to levels of young adulthood.

Furthermore, replacement therapy may lead to desired results, such as greater muscle mass and a stronger sex drive.However, Richardson Pain & Wellness the testosterone therapy to treat low T is vital is surprised to make you aware. Due to the mental and physical risks may develop with self-administered artificial or synthetic testosterone.The testosterone therapy Richardson is suitable for those with low testosterone, call Richardson Pain & Wellness today to schedule a consultation.

Also, Richardson offers the residents of medical weight loss programs Richardson, which they designed with care and precision to suit each patient. So, what does the weight loss program entail? Well, they create a customized diet, exercise plan, and supplement program, they believe it is essential to focus on workingwith their body for weight loss, not against it.

Richardson Pain & Wellness creates a weight loss program that is put together by two doctors alongside a registered dietitian. These professionals have years of experience in the field of wellness and pain management. For instance, Janel Kobza-Chukhman has over 15 years of nutrition counseling experience. A considerable advantage of Richardson Pain & Wellness is that they provide you with all three elements; a diet plan, an exercise plan, and supplements. Whats even better is the result you achieve after all the hard work of keeping to your specified program.

Richardson believes the key to healthy weight loss is following a plan that is specially made for you, and they are proud of the weight-loss programs they provide for their clients.

Contact the Richardson pain clinic today if you would like to book an appointment and have one of their experienced doctors custom make a wellness plan to suit your needs or if you want to start your weight-loss journey today. Ring the clinic on (972) 907-1125, or you can email to schedule an appointment.


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With this new technology, men have been able to ditch the little blue pill quickly, and for good – KSTU FOX 13 Salt Lake City

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There has been little advancement in the treatment of men's sexual dysfunction, or "E.D.," since the early 90's when the "little blue pill" made it's way onto the scene. Andrew Rinehart with Wasatch Medical Clinic says that finally, there is a new treatment that isn't simply a Band-Aid for erectile dysfunction; it eliminates the problem at its root.

"Acoustic Wave Therapy treats the root cause of the problem, which is blood flow," Rinehart said. "It widens blood vessels, increasing the amount of blood released into the penis during arousal."

It does this, he says, without the harmful side effects that medication and hormone therapy can have. It targets the problem without throwing your whole body off balance.

Andrew said that if viewers call now, a free doctor exam and ultrasound (worth $300+) will be done with a medical doctor. So there really isn't anything to lose! Even if you don't go through with the treatment, you will know the cause of your E.D. But with the results patients are seeing - such as a total rebound in the bedroom in 3-4 weeks, who wouldn't want to give this a try?

For your free consultation, call 801-901-8000 or visit

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With this new technology, men have been able to ditch the little blue pill quickly, and for good - KSTU FOX 13 Salt Lake City

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Why Does It Itch ‘Down There’? It May Be a Vaginal Yeast Infection – The Swaddle

A vaginal yeast infection also called vaginal candidiasis occurs when the yeast fungus (candida) that is naturally present in the vaginas microbiome (the collection of good bacteria, fungi, and other microbes that help keep the vagina self-cleaning and healthy) proliferate beyond normal amounts. The imbalance can cause discomfort and pain it may also itch down there but its not typically considered a serious health risk. Still, heres what you need to know to live your life through the irritation and soreness.

The fungus Candida albicans is behind most yeast infections. Its a naturally occurring microbe in the vaginal microbiome that can proliferate out of control when other microbes diminish. (That said, other types of yeast can cause yeast infections, too, but its rarer.)

Certain activities can aid this imbalance. Douching, contrary to popular belief, is an entirely unnecessary, unhygienic practice that actually disrupts the balance of the vaginas microbiome, makes the vagina less healthy, and puts individuals at risk of a vaginal infection. Excess use of antibiotics for instance, taking antibiotics for a cold or the flu (for which antibiotics are ineffective) can kill off the kinds of vaginal bacteria that hold yeast microbes in check and contribute to a yeast infection. Hormone fluctuations as associated with pregnancy, hormonal birth control use, and/or hormone therapy can also affect the balance of the vaginas microbiome and cause a vaginal yeast infection.

The bottom line is this: Yeast infections arent caused by being dirty. Theyre caused by a host of factors, many entirely natural and many outside the control of the person experiencing one.

Three in four women will get a yeast infection at some point in their lives; many of them will experience at least two. Pregnant women are particularly prone to yeast infections, for the same reason they are more prone to urinary tract infections: their hormonal fluctuations can alter the balance of the vaginas microbiome. For the same reason, women who use hormonal birth control may also be at higher risk for yeast infections.

That said, anyone with a vagina is able to contract a vaginal yeast infection. And anyone, period, is able to contract a yeast infection in other parts of the body. (For instance, a yeast infection of the mouth is known as thrush, and yeast infection is a major cause of diaper rash in babies.)

A yeast infection is not considered a sexually transmitted infection, because people with vaginas can also develop a yeast infection by other means than sex. That said, according to the Mayo Clinic, some research suggests that sexual intercourse both oral and vaginal can affect ones risk of yeast infection. Still, it isnt quite clear to scientists whether having oral or vaginal sex when you have a yeast infection makes your partner more likely to get a yeast infection as well, according to Planned Parenthood.

Either way, experts are quite clear: Its best to avoid vaginal and/or oral sexual activity until the yeast infection has cleared up partly because theyre not 100% sure if the infection transfers to a partner, partly because the friction of sex can irritate the vaginal tissue further and worsen the infection, and partly because some oil-based yeast infection treatments could cause condoms to break, raising the risk of pregnancy.

Related on The Swaddle:

Why Women Are More Prone to Urinary Tract Infections Than Men

According to Planned Parenthood and the Mayo Clinic, typical yeast infection symptoms include some or all of the following:

Yeast infections are common before and/or after periods for the same reason pregnant women and women who use hormonal contraceptives are more prone to developing yeast infections: hormonal fluctuations. The waxing and waning of hormones around the time of menstruation can also alter the balance in the vaginas microbiome and put someone at risk of a yeast infection.

Nothing. Yeast infections are treatable during menstruation. Also, its totally fine to use tampons or pads if youre bleeding and also have a yeast infection, Dr. Jennifer Conti, a clinical assistant professor at Stanford University in obstetrics and gynecology, told Womens Health in 2017. However, (a) make sure they are not scented, or deodorizing, tampons and/or pads, which could contribute to an imbalanced vaginal microbiome, and (b) anyone menstruating and experiencing a yeast infection at the same time might want to be more conscious about frequently changing tampons or pads.

For anyone who has never had a yeast infection before, it is a good idea to consult a doctor to confirm the diagnosis before attempting to treat a yeast infection at home. Also, pregnant women, women who have diabetes, women who have a weakened immune system, and women who have had four or more yeast infections in the last year should consult a doctor for treatment automatically.

However, for anyone else who is familiar with yeast infections and recognizes the signs, many over-the-counter treatments are available.

According to the Mayo Clinic, anti-fungal medication for yeast infection can come in a variety of forms: creams, ointments, oral pills, and vaginal suppositories. Regimen differs according to each medication, and treatment can last anywhere from one day to a week. Oral pills are not recommended for pregnant women.

For severe yeast infections, or lingering symptoms, a doctor might prescribe a longer course of anti-fungal therapy, a multi-dose therapy (two or more different kinds of anti-fungal medications), or, as a last recourse, a boric acid vaginal suppository, if the infection proves resistant to other forms of treatment.

Home remedies for yeast infection are popular; a quick Google search will provide lists upon lists of at-home, DIY yeast infection treatments, with dahi (yogurt) topping recommendations. While some of these jugaad remedies have tentative or inconsistent scientific support for their curative effects, none have been tested remotely enough to be considered actual treatments. Experts are clear: Do not attempt an at-home, DIY remedy for a vaginal yeast infection without consulting a doctor first.

Yes, certain measures can minimize ones risk of a vaginal yeast infection, per the Mayo Clinic. Avoiding douching tops the list of preventative actions. And avoiding scented feminine products, including pads and tampons, is also a good step for the same reason; the scent additives can disturb the balance of vaginal microbes.

Also, avoiding unnecessary antibiotics can prevent the kinds of vaginal bacteria that hold yeast microbes in check from dying off.

Finally, avoiding lingering in damp clothes, especially damp clothes made of synthetic material such as swimsuits, workout clothes, pantyhose, and synthetic underwear can do much to minimize the chances of a yeast infection. Note that its the breathability of the fabric that is as important as the dryness; for instance, using talcum or other powders might avoid vaginal dampness, but its definitely not a good idea for vaginal health.

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Pro-LGBT adults admit 7-year-old in gender transition case isnt totally convinced hes a girl – Lifesite

TEXAS, October 17, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) A number of expert witnesses and healthcare workers testified in court yesterday about transgenderism and James Younger, the seven-year-old whose mother, Anne Georgulas, wants to transition him into a girl against his fathers wishes.

Dr. Benjamin Albritton continued his testimony, followed by Diane Zilca of Dallas County Family Services; Rebekka Ouer, James counselor from Dallas Rainbow Therapy; Dr. Abel Tomatis, James trauma therapist; Jasmine Jackson, a Child Protective Services investigator; and finally, Dr. Daniel Schumer, a pediatric endocrinologist from the University of Michigan.

There were many highlights from the testimonies, and there were a few common veins throughout them. Most of the expert witnesses spoke about the fluidity of James gender presentation, and the positive long-term impact of James identifying with his biological sex.

Mr. Odeneal, the attorney for James dad Jeffrey Younger, and the amicus attorney focused on the discussion of the criteria for a gender dysphoria diagnosis and the definition of gender itself. Each professional who commented on gender gave a slightly nuanced answer and all of them prefaced their statements with, I think gender is

Gender is in the brain...It's not that you want to be [a gender], its that you are, Ms. Ouer told the court.

Gender is more socially constructed, Dr. Tomatis said. It is someones innate sense of oneself as masculine or feminine.

Gender is an internal sense of oneself as a boy or girl, man or woman, or any gender in between....its a social construct, Dr. Schumer insisted. Everyone is born without a gender identity.

Gender is the focus of the case as Georgulas a pediatrician is working to convince the court that she deserves to be named Sole Managing Conservator for James and his twin, Jude. Jeffery Younger, meanwhile, is fighting to prevent Georgulas from making independent decisions for the boys, such as starting a medical gender transition for James.

In addition to defining gender, Youngers attorney and the amicus attorney the court-appointed lawyer who is supposed to be neutral and act in the best interest of the children focused on James diagnosis of gender dysphoria and the imminent threat of a medical transition.

In his questioning of Dr. Albritton, Dr. Tomatis, and Dr. Schumer, Youngers attorney drew their attention to the fact that James does not meet a critical aspect of the criteria required for gender dysphoria: James isnt distressed. Dr. Albritton also testified that the boys are not afraid of their father. Other witnesses testified to the contrary, but Dr. Albritton has spent the most time with the boys and the family of all the expert witnesses.

Albritton noted in his psychological evaluation, which was reviewed during his testimony: Neither child appears to be depressed, anxious or aggressive ...He [James] gave no indications of other significant psychological difficulties.

Dr. Tomatis testified that he saw no clinical symptoms of distress in his interactions with James.

Ms. Ouer stated that the lack of distress exhibited by James is due to the fact that he is affirmed as a girl with his mother and at school.

Mr. Odeneal also highlighted medical records from James pediatrician referring James to a medical transition clinic when he reaches age eight or nine: Will plan to have a psychological evaluation at GENECIS when closer to 8-9 years old to consider hormone suppression.

Dr. Schumer, who specializes in medical transitions, testified that puberty blockers should not be started until a child hits Tanner Stage 2 of puberty. He also told the court that the average start of puberty in someone who is a male is eleven and a half.

Mr. Odeneal also showed the jury a referral letter from Ms. Ouer to Childrens Medical Hospital for the GENECIS clinic. The GENECIS clinic completes gender evaluations and facilitates medical transitions, which involve giving children puberty blockers and in many cases cross-sex hormones.

This is a letter of recommendation that my client, James Younger, aka Luna, begin the process of becoming a patient of the GENECIS clinic so that she [sic] can receive a full psychological assessment for gender dysphoria and potentially take hormone blockers.

The expert witnesses, all of whom were paid by Georgulas to testify, and the state agency representatives admitted that James does not identify with only one gender.

Dr. Albritton told the court, There is still some fluidity in his [James] thinking.

Ms. Zilca, from Dallas County Family Services, refused to call James by anything other than Luna. She told the court, She [James] does not identify with only one gender.

James counselor Ms. Ouer who specializes in working with the LGBT community told the court that gender fluidity means something different for each person. She also stated that James may not be transgender despite her having diagnosed him with gender dysphoria since there is some fluidity in his expression.

Ms. Ouer and many of the other experts insisted on the importance of calling James Luna and letting the seven-year-old guide any changes.

While questioning Ms. Ouer, the amicus attorney shared that James initially came to his mom asking to be called Starfire, a female character in Teen Titans Go! Ms. Ouer chuckled slightly.The amicus attorney asked why allowing James to go by Starfire didnt align with Ms. Ouers recommendation of letting children control their gender transition. Ms. Ouer stated that affirming the childs underlying gender desires is what is most important.

Dr. Tomatis, James so-called trauma counselor, also testified. Georgulas attorneys referred to Dr. Tomatis as James trauma counselor, but he said he neither specializes in trauma, nor has he diagnosed James with trauma. He noted that he is seeing James to help with emotional regulation in the midst of such difficult circumstances.

Dr. Schumer, a pediatric endocrinologist specializing in gender transitioning, was flown in from Michigan to testify. In his testimony, he said that children begin developing the concept of gender between six and seven years old, but later also stated it occursbetween five and seven years old. James first reported to his father that his mother told him he was a girl when he was just three years old.

At one point during Dr. Schumers testimony, Georgulas attorneys shared Dr. Schumers formal custody recommendation with the court. Dr. Schumer has never met either of the boys or their parents. Judge Kim Cooks chastised the lawyers privately and announced to the court that only Dr. Albritton is qualified to make custody recommendations.

Each of the expert witnesses admitted that returning to identifying as being a boy would be the easiest path forward for James.

Certainly it offers less challenges for him, Dr. Albritton stated.

Being trans is not an easy path, Ms. Ouer testified.

There was much back and forth regarding gender, sex, prounouns, and whether James should be called James or Luna.

The case resumed today with Mr. Youngers testimony.

Follow all LifeSiteNews coverage of the James Younger case here.

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Pro-LGBT adults admit 7-year-old in gender transition case isnt totally convinced hes a girl - Lifesite

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Your ultimate guide to Sex Reassignment Surgery in Thailand (male to female) – The Thaiger

For those who want to match their physical gender with what they feel is their true gender, Thailand is the place for Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS) also known as Gender Reassignment Surgery, Sex Change Operation, and MtF Surgery, to name a few. So, what makes Thailand such an attractive destination for this type of procedure? In short, its because patients can get the most out of such surgeries in Thailand thanks to the number of highly trained surgeons, low-cost and quality health care, and decades of knowledge and experience in perfecting this procedure.

If youre considering SRS in Thailand, or you have a family member, a partner, or a friend who is wondering what is involved in the procedure, this guide should help to paint a clearer picture.

To undergo SRS is a huge, life-changing decision that should not be made lightly. It is a lengthy process that requires a lot of resilience and patience. Before the actual surgery, you will first need to live as a woman for at least a year and undertake hormone treatment to help reshape your body contour and stimulate the growth of a labia majora.

Heres a list of the required prerequisites that all surgeons will insist upon before considering your case:

The actual process usually involves a few procedures:

You may also choose other surgical procedures, such as a Tracheal Shave to remove your Adams apple, or a Buttock Augmentation to increase the volume of the buttocks. Since every patient is unique, the procedures involved in SRS can be performed based on your needs and budget.

The most important part of male-to-female surgery is the creation of the vagina. There are numerous surgical techniques to do this based on your preference. You can discuss with your surgeon which one is best for you. The other popular techniques are as follows:

1. SRS without vaginal depth

2. SRS with Penile Skin Inversion

3. SRS with Scrotal Skin Graft

4. SRS with Sigmoid Colon by Laparoscopic Technique

Caitlyn Jenner, Possibly the Most Famous Transgender Person Ever

Recovery after surgery will be a long and painful process. It will also require several follow up procedures as well as constant monitoring so you will have to stay a little bit longer at the hospital until you are fully ready to be discharged. Generally, allow for a minimum of 3 weeks stay in Thailand or the country of your choice area after your surgery. Most people are able to return to work in about 4-6 weeks after a sex change operation. Furthermore, you can resume strenuous work and exercise in about 6-8 weeks. It is vital that you strictly follow all medication instructions during your recovery period.

Social support is very important before and after the surgery, especially the support that comes from your family and loved ones. You have to be socially and emotionally stable before you undergo the operation. This is why it is required that you have proper counseling to help you with your emotional wellbeing. You have to prepare yourself mentally, before, during and after transition because it can be quite overwhelming and stressful.

It is also important that you maintain regular check-ups with your local Doctor to monitor the progress of your healing and avoid such complications.

The success rate for a sex change is very high, given our technological advancements. Gender reassignment surgery from male to female has a higher success rate than female to male; this is why more male transgender opts for a sex change.

However, given the nature and complexities of this type of surgery, you also have to be aware of its complications:

Possible side effects may also include:

SRS can be very expensive, especially since it is difficult to get this type of surgery in many countries. One reason why Thailand is popular with those who want to change their sexual identity is that the country offers more affordable fees. Many patients come from the United States because the US has the most expensive male-to-female SRS prices in the world.

The prices range from $25,000 to $30,000 for just the reconstruction of the genitals alone. If you want to add breast augmentation and voice feminisation surgery, you can expect to pay more than $50,000. Additionally, some clinics in the US dont include consultation fees in their prices, so you need to pay at least $50-100 for every consultation.

In general, SRS in Thailand costs around a third to half of what it can cost in the United States. For the reconstruction of the genitals in Thailand, you can expect to pay between $8,400 to $13,700 depending on which technique you choose.

Breast augmentation costs approximately $4,100 to $6,170 and Voice Feminisation Surgery costs between $3,590 to $7,180. In total, you will need to pay around $16,090 to $27,050 in Thailand for the complete procedure. These prices can also include packages, such as hospitalization accommodation, post-operative care, consultation fee, post-operative care, medications, and transportation.

The low-cost healthcare in Thailand does not mean low-quality treatment. In fact, Thailand is extremely popular among medical tourists because the country is known to have high-quality healthcare. Numerous medical centers in Thailand are accredited by prestigious international organizations, such as the Joint Commission International (JCI). The country has come a long way since its first Sex Reassignment Surgery in 1975, with many surgeons specialising in SRS for years, some even have over 20 years of experience. With their skills and experience, the surgeons and clinics can give patients the proper care they need and guarantee the best possible result.

Since there are many medical centres in the country that offer Male to Female SRS, it is understandable that some will better than others. To avoid disappointment, do your research, read reviews, find out about the clinics accreditation, and ask for your surgeons certifications. Better still, seek out the services of a dedicated Medical Tourism Facilitator like MyMediTravel who will guide you through the whole process and find you the best possible surgeon/clinic/hospital available and within your budget.

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Your ultimate guide to Sex Reassignment Surgery in Thailand (male to female) - The Thaiger

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CRISPR researchers needed a computer program to understand results. They got it from a high schooler – The News Journal

CRISPR researchers needed a computer program to understand results. They got it from a high schooler  The News Journal

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CRISPR researchers needed a computer program to understand results. They got it from a high schooler - The News Journal

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Top 10 biotech innovations of all time, including CRISPR, IVF babies – Genetic Literacy Project

As biologys first big science collaboration, the international Human Genome Project mapped and sequenced the entire human genome, paving the way for unparalleled innovations in medicine, biotech and life sciences.

More than 8 million people can now trace their origins to this scientific breakthrough, which began with a single in vitro fertilization (IVF) birth four decades ago. By 2100, IVF could be responsible for 3.5 percent of the global population.

This relatively simple gene-editing technique carries world-changing implications: By allowing scientists to precisely change an organisms DNA on the spot, CRISPR could eradicate inherited diseases or cure existing ones. Since its inception in 2012, CRISPR has fueled much controversy too, as teams look to modify everything from crops to mosquitos. That discussion reached a fever pitch this year after a scientist in China claimed to have created the worlds first babies genetically edited with CRISPR.

Identifying individuals based on hair, blood or other biological samples may seem a given now. But its only possible because of this breakthrough sciencewhich also has led to new findings in cancer and genetic conditions.

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Genetic engineering, CRISPR and food: What the ‘revolution’ will bring in the near future – Genetic Literacy Project

Humankind is on the verge of a genetic revolution that holds great promise and potential. It will change the ways food is grown, medicine is produced, animals are altered and will give rise to new ways of producing plastics, biofuels and chemicals.

Many object to the genetic revolution, insisting we should not be playing God by tinkering with the building blocks of life; we should leave the genie in the bottle. This is the view held by many opponents of GMO foods. But few transformative scientific advances are widely embraced at first. Once a discovery has been made and its impact widely felt it is impossible to stop despite the pleas of doubters and critics concerned about potential unintended consequences. Otherwise, science would not have experienced great leaps throughout historyand we would still be living a primitive existence.

[Editors note: This is the first in a four-part series examining genetic engineerings impact on our lives. The second installment examines regulatory obstacles blunting the potential of genetically engineered animals;the third looks at the role of gene editing in medicine; and the final segment looks at synthetic biology and other novel applications.]

Gene editing of humans and plantsa revolutionary technique developed just a few years ago that makes genetic tinkering dramatically easier, safer and less expensivehas begun to accelerate this revolution. University of California-Berkeley biochemistJennifer Doudna, one of the co-inventors of the CRISPR technique:

Within the next few years, this new biotechnology will give us higher-yielding crops, healthier livestock, and more nutritious foods. Within a few decades, we might well have genetically engineered pigs that can serve as human organ donorswe are on the cusp of a new era in the history of life on earthan age in which humans exercise an unprecedented level of control over the genetic composition of the species that co-inhabit our planet. It wont be long before CRISPR allows us to bend nature to our will in the way that humans have dreamed of since prehistory.

The four articles in this series will examine the dramatic changes that gene editing and other forms of genetic engineering will usher in.

Despite the best efforts of opponents, GE crops have become so embedded and pervasive in the food systemseven in Europe which has bans in place on growing GMOs in most countriesthat it is impossible to dislodge them without doing serious damage to the agricultural sector and boosting food costs for consumers.

Even countries which ban the growing of GMOs or who have such strict labeling laws that few foods with GE ingredients are sold in supermarkets are huge consumers of GE products.

Europe is one of the largest importers of GMO feed in the world. Most of the meat we consume from cattle, sheep, goats, chickens, turkeys, pigs and fish farms are fed genetically modified corn, soybeans and alfalfa.

And the overwhelming majority of cheeses are made with an enzyme produced by GM microbes and some beers and wines are made with genetically engineered yeast.

North America, much of South America and Australia are major consumers of foods grown from GE seeds. Much of the corn oil, cotton seed oil, soybean oil and canola oil used for frying and cooking, and in salad dressings and mayonnaise is genetically modified. GM soybeans are used to make tofu, miso, soybean meal, soy ice cream, soy flour and soy milk. GM corn is processed into corn starch and corn syrup and is used to make whiskey. Much of our sugar is derived from GM sugar beets and GE sugarcane is on the horizon. Over 90 percent of the papaya grown in Hawaii has been genetically modified to make it resistant to the ringspot virus. Some of the squash eaten in the US is made from GM disease-resistant seeds and developing countries are field testing GM disease-resistant cassava.

Many critics of GE in agriculture focus on the fact that by volume most crops are used in commodity food manufacturing, specifically corn and soybeans. One reason for that is the high cost of getting new traits approved. Indeed, research continues on commodity crops, although many of the scientists work for academia and independent research institutes.

For example, in November 2016, researchers in the UK were granted the authority to begin trials of a genetically engineered wheat that has the potential to increase yields by 40 percent. The wheat, altered to produce a higher level of an enzyme critical for turning sunlight and carbon dioxide into plant fuel, was developed in part by Christine Raines, the Head of the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Essex.

A new generation of foods are now on the horizon, some as the result of new breeding techniques (NBTs), such as gene editing. Many of these foods will be nutritionally fortified, which will be critical to boosting the health of many of the poorest people in developing nations and increase yields.

Golden rice is a prime example of such a nutrition-enhanced crop. It is genetically engineered to have high levels of beta carotene, a precursor of Vitamin A. This is particularly important as many people in developing countries suffer from Vitamin A deficiency which leads to blindness and even death. Bangladesh is expected to begin cultivation of golden rice in 2018. The Philippines may also be close to growing it.

A strain of golden rice that includes not only high levels of beta carotene but also high levels of zinc and iron could be commercialized within 5 years. Our results demonstrate that it is possible to combine several essential micronutrients iron, zinc and beta carotene in a single rice plant for healthy nutrition, said Navreet Bhullar, senior scientist at ETH Zurich, which developed the rice.

The Science in the News group at Harvard University discussed some of the next generation foods.

Looking beyond Golden Rice, there are a large number of biofortified staple crops in development. Many of these crops are designed to supply other micronutrients, notably vitamin E in corn, canola and soybeansProtein content is also a key focus; protein-energy malnutrition affects 25% of children because many staple crops have low levels ofessential amino acids. Essential amino acids are building blocks of proteins and must be taken in through the diet or supplements. So far, corn, canola, and soybeans have been engineered to contain higher amounts of the essential amino acid lysine. Crops like corn, potatoes and sugar beets have also been modified to contain more dietary fiber, a component with multiple positive health benefits.

Other vitamin-enhanced crops have been developed though they have yet to be commercialized. Australian scientists created a GE Vitamin A enriched banana, scientists in Kenya developed GE Vitamin A enhanced sorghum and plant scientists in Switzerland developed a GE Vitamin B6 enhanced cassava plant.

Scientists genetically engineered canola, a type of rapeseed, to produce additional omega-3 fatty acids. Research is being conducted on developing GM gluten free wheat and vegetables with higher levels of Vitamin E to fight heart disease.

Other more consumer-focused genetically-engineered crops that do not use transgenics, and have sailed through the approval system include:

Other products are in development that fight viruses and disease. Scientists have used genetic engineering to develop disease-resistant rice. A new plum variety resists the plum pox virus. It has not yet been commercialized. GE solutions may be the only answer to save the orange industry from citrus greening, which is devastating orange groves in Florida. GE might be utilized to curb the damage caused by stem rust fungus in wheat and diseases effecting the coffee crop.

In Africa, GE solutions could be used to combat the ravages of banana wilt and cassava brown streak disease and diseases that impact cocoa trees and potatoes. A GE bean has been developed in Brazil that is resistant to the golden mosaic virus. Researchers at the University of Florida, the University of California-Berkeley and the 2Blades Foundation have developed a disease resistant GM tomato.

Scientists at the John Innes Center in the UK are attempting to create a strain of barley capable of making its own ammonium fertilizer from nitrogen in the soil. This would be particularly beneficial to farmers who grow crops in poor soil conditions or who lack the financial resources to buy synthetic fertilizers.

Peggy Ozias-Akins, a horticulture expert at the University of Georgia has developed and tested genetically-engineered peanuts that do not produce two proteins linked to intense allergens.

New gene editing techniques (NBTs) such as CRISPR offer great potential and face lower approval hurdles, at least for now.

In June 2017, the EPA approved a new first of its kind GE corn known as SmartStaxPro, in which the plants genes are tweaked without transgenics to produce a natural toxin designed to kill western corn rootworm larvae. It also produces a piece of RNA that shuts down a specific gene in the larvae, thereby killing them. The new GE corn is expected to be commercialized by the end of the decade.

What could slowor even stopthis revolution? In an opinion piece for Nature Biology, Richard B. Flavell, a British molecular biologist and former director of the John Innes Center in the UK, which conducts research in plant science, genetics and microbiology, warned about the dangers of vilifying and hindering new GE technologies:

The consequences of simply sustaining the chaotic status quoin which GMOs and other innovative plant products are summarily demonized by activists and the organic lobbyare frightening when one considers mounting challenges to food production, balanced nutrition and poverty alleviation across the world. Those who seek to fuel the GMO versus the non-GMO debate are perpetuating irresolvable difference of opinion. Those who seek to perpetuate the GMO controversy and actively prevent use of new technology to crop breeding are not only on the wrong side of the debate, they are on the wrong side of the evidence. If they continue to uphold beliefs against evidence, they will find themselves on the wrong side of history.

A version of this article previously ran on the GLP on January 24, 2018.

Steven E. Cerier is a freelance international economist and a frequent contributor to the Genetic Literacy Project

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CRISPR gene editing raises hopes of easing the pain associated with sickle cell disease – Genetic Literacy Project

[Sickle cell] diseaseis caused by a genetic defect that turns red blood cells into hard, sticky, sickle-shaped cells that dont carry oxygen well, clog the bloodstream, damage organs and cause torturous bouts of pain.

The pain is excruciating. Its like being in a car accident and having lightning in your chest. Its a pain that makes a grown woman like me scream, Gray says. Its an overwhelming pain.

Like many sickle cell patients, Victoria had to drop out of school, quit work and spend weeks in the hospital away from her family. Since many sickle cell patients dont survive past their 40s, Gray worries whether shell live to see her children grow up. She just turned 34.

But Gray has hope now, because in July doctors infused billions of her own bone marrow cells back into her body, after editing them with CRISPR.

Scientists used CRISPR to modify a gene in the cells to make them produce fetal hemoglobin, a protein that babies usually stop making shortly after birth. The hope is that the protein produced through the gene-editing treatment will give sickle cell patients like Gray healthy red blood cells.

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Global CRISPR Technology Market Revenue And Value Chain 2019-2028 – The State News – BBState

New York City, NY: October 19, 2019 Published via (Wired Release) Global CRISPR Technology Market Research Reportrepresents the proficient analysis of CRISPR Technology industry providing a competitive study of leading market players, market growth, consumption(sales) volume, key drivers and limiting factors, future projections for the new-comer to plan their strategies for business. Further, the report contains the study of CRISPR Technology market ups and downs of the past few years and forecasts sales investment data from 2019 to 2028.

The CRISPR Technology Report outlining the vitals details which are based on manufacturing region, top players, type, applications and so on will gives the transparent view of Industry. The important presence of different regional and local players of CRISPR Technology market is tremendously competitive. The CRISPR Technology Report is beneficial to recognize the annual revenue of key players, business strategies, key company profiles and their benefaction to the market share.

Download Free Sample Copy of CRISPR Technology Market Report:

Top Manufacturers Are Covered in This Report:Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc, Merck KGaA, GenScript Corporation, Integrated DNA Technologies Inc, Horizon Discovery Group, Agilent Technologies Inc, Cellecta Inc, GeneCopoeia Inc, New England Biolabs Inc, Origene Technologies Inc

This research report contains a pictorial representation of important data in the form of graphs, figures, diagrams and tables to make simplified for the users to understand the CRISPR Technology market new trends clearly.

Geographically, report on CRISPR Technology is based on several regions with repect to CRISPR Technology export-import ratio of the region, production and sales volume, share of CRISPR Technology market and growth rate of the industry. Major regions included while preparing the report areNorth America, Latin America, Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Asia Pacific.

The leading players in CRISPR Technology industry are estimated to ahead on these opportunities to invade the global market. CRISPR Technology market size and revenue of key players is assessed using the Bottom-up way.

Reasons for Buying Global CRISPR Technology Market Report

* Report provides in-depth study on changing CRISPR Technology market dynamics.

* Report offers Pin Point study on distinct factors driving and constraining industry growth.

* Technological innovation in market to study CRISPR Technology market growth rate.

* Estimated CRISPR Technology market growth depending on the study of historical and the present size of the industry.

Customize Report AndInquiry For The CRISPR Technology Market Report:

Report Table of Content Gives Exact Idea about Global CRISPR Technology Market Report:

Chapter 1explains CRISPR Technology report necessary market surveillance, product price structure, and study, market scope and size forecast from 2019 to 2028. Although, CRISPR Technology market activity, factors impacting the growth of business also complete analysis of current market holders.

Chapter 2offers detailing of top manufacturers of CRISPR Technology market with their share, sales, and revenue.

Chapters 3, 4, 5studies CRISPR Technology report competitive study based on the type of product, their regional sales and import-export study, the annual growth ratio of the market and the coming years study from 2019 to 2028.

Chapter 6offers a detailed analysis of CRISPR Technology business channels, CRISPR Technology market investors, vendors, CRISPR Technology suppliers, dealers, CRISPR Technology market opportunities and threats.

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Global CRISPR Technology Market Revenue And Value Chain 2019-2028 - The State News - BBState

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Reviewing Seelos Therapeutics Inc. (SEEL)’s and CRISPR Therapeutics AG (NASDAQ:CRSP)’s results – MS Wkly

We are contrasting Seelos Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:SEEL) and CRISPR Therapeutics AG (NASDAQ:CRSP) on their institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, profitability, risk, dividends, earnings and valuation. They both are Biotechnology companies, competing one another.

Earnings & Valuation

Table 1 demonstrates Seelos Therapeutics Inc. and CRISPR Therapeutics AGs top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.


Table 2 hightlights the return on equity, net margins and return on assets of the two companies.


The Current Ratio of Seelos Therapeutics Inc. is 2.5 while its Quick Ratio stands at 2.5. The Current Ratio of rival CRISPR Therapeutics AG is 15.8 and its Quick Ratio is has 15.8. CRISPR Therapeutics AG is better equipped to clear short and long-term obligations than Seelos Therapeutics Inc.

Analyst Ratings

Seelos Therapeutics Inc. and CRISPR Therapeutics AG Ratings and Recommendations are available on the next table.

Meanwhile, CRISPR Therapeutics AGs consensus target price is $62, while its potential upside is 63.55%.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

Institutional investors held 10.4% of Seelos Therapeutics Inc. shares and 50% of CRISPR Therapeutics AG shares. 18.48% are Seelos Therapeutics Inc.s share held by insiders. Insiders Comparatively, held 2% of CRISPR Therapeutics AG shares.


Here are the Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, Half Yearly, Yearly and YTD Performance of both pretenders.

For the past year Seelos Therapeutics Inc. had bearish trend while CRISPR Therapeutics AG had bullish trend.


CRISPR Therapeutics AG beats on 7 of the 10 factors Seelos Therapeutics Inc.

CRISPR Therapeutics AG, a gene editing company, focuses on developing transformative gene-based medicines for the treatment of serious human diseases using its proprietary clustered, regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats associated protein-9 (CRISPR/Cas9)gene-editing platform in Switzerland. The CRISPR/Cas9 technology allows for changes to genomic DNA. It has a collaboration agreement with Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Incorporated to develop, manufacture, commercialize, sell, and use therapeutics; a license agreement with Anagenesis Biotechnologies SAS; and a service agreement with MaSTherCell SA to develop and manufacture allogeneic CAR-T therapies. The company also has research collaboration agreements with Neon Therapeutics and Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center to develop novel T cell therapies for cancer. CRISPR Therapeutics AG is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland.

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Gene-Therapy Treatment Could Help People with Macular Degeneration – Healthline

Share on PinterestTreatment for macular degeneration might become more convenient in the future. Getty Images

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the leading causes of vision loss and blindness among older adults in the United States.

But now researchers are looking at a potential new treatment that may help prevent this common form of blindness from worsening.

Researchers at multiple sites are currently conducting a phase I clinical trial on a gene therapy that could help patients get fewer injections in their eye to treat the condition.

AMD develops when abnormal blood vessels form at the back of the eye, behind the retina. When those blood vessels leak blood or plasma, its known as wet AMD (wAMD).

To reduce vision loss and prevent blindness, people with wAMD have to visit their doctor every 4 to 8 weeks to receive injections of medication in the affected eye. If they miss or skip a scheduled treatment, it can cause their vision loss to worsen.

But treatment might become more convenient in the future, as researchers are currently conducting the phase I clinical trial on a gene therapy that would reduce the number of treatments patients need.

In this experimental therapy, genetic material is inserted into cells in the patients eye. This genetic material causes the cells to produce aflibercept, a medication thats used to treat wAMD.

If this therapy proves to be safe and effective, it may allow doctors to treat wAMD with as little as one injection. After that first injection, the patients eye would produce an ongoing supply of its own medication.

Theres a tremendous treatment burden with respect to our patients with wAMD, [as] many require 10-plus injections per year for their lifetime in order to maintain vision, Dr. Szilrd Kiss, lead investigator of the study and director of clinical research and chief of the retina service in the department of ophthalmology at Weill Cornell Medical College, told Healthline.

With this new in-office intravitreal gene therapy, there is potential for a one-and-done approach that can not only completely alleviate that treatment burden, but perhaps result in improved visual outcomes, he added.

Reducing the treatment burden on people with wAMD isnt just a matter of convenience.

When patients find it hard to stick to their treatment plan, it can lead to worse outcomes.

We know from other work thats been done that one of the biggest determinants of how well patients maintain their vision over the years is how often they receive medicine, Dr. Sunir Garg, a clinical spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology and a professor of ophthalmology at Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia, told Healthline.

Not getting treatment as often as the eye would require, thats a big cause for progressive vision loss over time, he continued.

Attending monthly or bimonthly visits with a doctor can be challenging for anyone, but patients with wAMD often face more barriers than many. Due to vision loss, they may not be able to drive themselves to their appointments, and may depend on others to get them there.

If scientists can develop a treatment approach that requires fewer doctor visits, that could have a substantial effect on a patients ability to stick to their treatment plan.

If all goes according to plan, Kiss hopes a gene therapy for wAMD may be available within 3 to 5 years.

Earlier this month, he reported promising preliminary results from his phase I clinical trial at the 123rd Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

So far, his research team has enrolled 12 patients in the first two cohorts of the trial. Theyre continuing to enroll patients in the third and fourth cohorts.

Among the six patients whove already received the gene therapy, all of them have gone at least 6 months without needing additional injections.

Patients in the first cohort experienced inflammation in the treated eye, but Kiss said it was generally mild and manageable with steroid eye drops. He added that control of this inflammation will be paramount to the success of this therapy.

Although the trial is ongoing, the early results are encouraging, says Dr. Matthew Gorski, an ophthalmologist at Northwell Health in Great Neck, New York. However, more research is needed to test this experimental treatment.

While the findings of the study are encouraging and provide hope for an improvement in the current ways to treat AMD, Gorski said, further studies with many more patients are needed to confirm the results and prove that this therapy is safe.

After Kiss and colleagues finish their phase I clinical trial, they plan to launch a larger, prospective, multicenter controlled clinical trial to further study their gene therapy.

This isnt the only potential breakthrough for AMD treatment. Other studies are also underway to develop and test more convenient and consistent methods of delivering treatment to people with wAMD.

In other gene therapy trials, scientists have been testing methods of surgically administering gene therapy under the retina, rather than using an injection that can be administered in a doctors office.

Scientists have also been studying a treatment approach known as the Port Delivery System, in which an urnlike reservoir is implanted in the eye and periodically filled with medication. This medication is meant to slowly diffuse into the eye, reducing the need for frequent treatments.

Time will quickly tell if one of those treatment models, or more than one of them, will end up helping our patients, Garg said.

But for now, he emphasizes the importance of getting early and consistent treatment with the injections that are currently available.

When patients seek treatment early and follow their recommended injection schedule, it can prevent additional vision loss and sometimes reverse vision loss thats already occurred.

Most patients dont mind coming in, because they know the current medicine helps them a lot, Garg said.

If we start to treat it earlier, that makes a huge difference to long-term outlook, he added.

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A Netflix Series Explores the Brave New World of Crispr – WIRED

Perhaps nowhere is this access more arresting than in the shows third installment, which explores the concept of gene drivea technique that uses Crispr to drive a genetic change through a population at evolutionary warp speed. Its inventor, an MIT engineer named Kevin Esvelt, spends the episode flying around the world, pitching it as a way to erase Lyme disease, say, from the tick-infested parts of Massachusetts or to exterminate invasive rodents in New Zealand. At a meeting with Maori elders, Esvelt is attacked for taking funding from Darpa, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. We've heard lots and lots of nice words from the colonizers over the millennia that have proven to be hollow, said one man. You're a little bit like the missionary who comes along with a good story, but behind you are a whole lot of men with rifles."

These moments of suspicion and fear arise throughout the episode, including in street protests in Burkina Faso, where thousands marched against a proposal to release gene-drive mosquitoes in that country as a way to eradicate malaria. But just when Unnatural Selection has you convinced that this technology is too new, too dangerous to be let loose on the world, it drops you into a clinic in a rural village, where every person comes down with malaria at least once a yearsometimes taking their lives, especially the young ones. At the human level, we are the ones suffering from this thing," says Abdoulaye Diabate, a medical entomologist who grew up in Burkina Faso and is leading some gene-drive experiments there. Bearing the burden of malaria no longer has to be the fate of Africa, he adds. Not when the technology to eliminate the disease exists.

Yet the episodes can also seem frenetic without a narrator at the helm, as when the first episode jumps between the labs of various scientists and the Oakland garage of the Odins Josiah Zayner. If you were looking for a Schoolhouse Rock explanation of how Crispr works or a deep dive on the history of its discovery, Unnatural Selection wont deliver. And it can muddy the distinctions between various technologies, as Crispr, gene editing, gene therapy, and genetic engineering all get thrown around. The second episode, for example, features two families seeking astronomically expensive new gene therapies. Neither are Crispr-based medicines, though the families' struggle for access offer a hint of what's to come when such medicines eventually arrive.

Like any good series, the most compelling moments come in the final episode, which examines the most controversial use of Crisprediting human embryos to pass changes on to future generations. The couples who bring the specter of designer babies to life do so using todays fertility techniques. In one scene, a fertility doctor helps his patients pick out embryos that are likely to become babies boasting the same blue eyes as their mother. In another, a Ukrainian couple delivers a healthy baby boywith 23 chromosomes from his mother, 23 chromosomes from his father, and mitochondrial DNA from another woman, the product of three-parent IVF.

Its in this episode too that Ishee emerges as more than a ponytailed dog semen savant. As he sees his biohacking friends accelerate a reckless attempt to create and commercialize a home HIV cure using Crispr, his confidence in their altruistic ambitions begins to erode. Egender and Kauffmans cameras capture these moments of fracture and ultimately, failure, with unsentimental lucidity. Its a refreshing dose of reality after so much spectacle.

Thats not to say that the shows subjects completely avoid falling into sci-fi tropes. All the requisite references will be madeto Gattaca, to Huxley, to life, uh, finds a way. But in the end, watching them confront their hopes and fears for what kind of world Crispr might make is a humbling and grounding experience. After watching Unnatural Selection you might not have a better understanding of how Crispr-Cas9 differs from Crispr-Cas12e, a, or b, but youll definitely have something to talk about on the subway.

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A Netflix Series Explores the Brave New World of Crispr - WIRED

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Pearland family fighting to get $2.1 million drug for toddler with rare genetic disease –

PEARLAND, Texas Krista James is turning 2 years old this week. But unlike other toddlers, she cant walk, talk, or sit up on her own.

Krista has Spinal Muscular Atrophy, or SMA. The life-threatening condition severely impacts kids muscle movements.

(Doctors) said children with SMA dont live to be eight months or a year to two years, so its truly a blessing shes turning two Friday, said Misty James, the childs mother.

However, her upcoming birthday also means Krista is running out of time.

The FDA recently approved Zolgensma, a cutting edge gene therapy that treats the disease at the genetic level.

Children 2 years old and younger are eligible.

The treatment is priced at $2.125 million.

Despite her doctor telling Medicaid its what the toddler needs, the request for coverage was denied.

Last week when I got the third denial letter, I broke down, James said.

University of Houston professor Barbara Evans said the problem starts at the top, because jumping through the FDAs hoops to get approval can cost pharmaceutical companies billions of dollars per drug.

SMA is estimated to affect 400 babies per year. You take a high cost of development and divide it by 400. It leads to a high price, said Evans, Director of the Center for Biotechnology and Law at the University of Houston.

She explains it is a price that can even strain insurance companies budgets.

Zolgensma is sold by the Swiss drugmaker Novartis.

A spokesperson for AveXis, a Novartis Company, said in a statement, For any newly approved therapy, it takes time to set up agreements with commercial and government-based health plans and it is common for there to be an appeal process while insurers put coverage and utilization policies and procedures in place. To facilitate this, we are actively partnering with insurers to accelerate coverage decisions that will support access for eligible patients.

The statement added they are aware of Kristas situation and are in contact with multiple parties to help provide support and assistance.

In the meantime, Medicaid is covering a different, less expensive medicine for the little girl called Spinraza.

Spinraza comes with three spinal injections a year for the rest of her life.

Kristas family is grateful for the medication, but they believe this new drug can give their child the best shot at a normal life.

They feel helpless knowing their daughters future is in someone elses hands.

A spokesperson from Texas Health and Human Services confirmed an expedited fair hearing was held Thursday regarding Kristas case.

A decision, which can be appealed, is expected to be issued Friday, which is also Kristas second birthday.

To read the full statement from AveXis:

"The FDA approval of Zolgensma (onasemnogene abeparvovec-xioi), a gene therapy for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) in pediatric patients less than 2 years of age, marked an important milestone within the SMA community. Understandably, many families are actively interested in accessing Zolgensma as soon as possible. Our goal is to support access for patients who need this one-time gene therapy. For any newly approved therapy, it takes time to set up agreements with commercial and government-based health plans and it is common for there to be an appeal process while insurers put coverage and utilization policies and procedures in place. To facilitate this, we are actively partnering with insurers to accelerate coverage decisions that will support access for eligible patients. We are pleased with our progress to date to support access for eligible children which includes many Medicaid state policies now in place, but our work with health plans is ongoing. While we cant discuss the specifics of any particular patient we are aware of this family and their efforts to access Zolgensma and we are in contact with multiple parties to help provide support and assistance."


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Cleft palate or lip is one of the most common birth defects worldwide, but do you know what it is? – ABC News

It's estimated that every three minutes, somewhere in the world a baby is born with a cleft lip or palate, making it one of the most common birth defects.

Eighteen-year-old Emma Johnston was born with a cleft palate and has been in and out of hospital her entire life for surgeries and speech therapy.

"I was very aware growing up that my face did look different because of that, the way that my jaw fit together, it was just very different to other people's," she said.

Babies born with a completely clefted palate often need surgery to avoid lifelong problems with speech, eating and hearing.

Emma Johnston got to know her surgeons and doctors very well over the years of her treatment.

(Supplied: Emma Johnston)

Emma Johnston got to know her surgeons and doctors very well over the years of her treatment.

While a minor cleft lip may not require surgical treatment, it can still affect someone's quality of life if they feel uncomfortable or are bullied about their appearance.

Emma was born with an isolated cleft palate, which meant she had no cleft lip or other abnormalities other than the open palate.

She had her first palate surgery when she was just nine months old, and has had nine operations just to put grommets in her ears.

"Surgeries, as much as I'm used to them, they're not fun, they're not pleasant," she said.

To understand what cleft palate is, you have to understand the palate which is essentially the roof of your mouth.

The soft palate is at the back of the mouth ending in the uvula, which is the teardrop-shaped bit of soft tissue that dangles down.

(Getty Images: Christoph Wilhelm)

The soft palate is at the back of the mouth ending in the uvula, which is the teardrop-shaped bit of soft tissue that dangles down.

Getty Images: Christoph Wilhelm

The hard palate is the bony plate at the front of the roof of your mouth, directly behind your upper teeth, and it helps move food back through the mouth.

Your soft palate is at the back of the mouth and is made up of soft muscle which closes against the back wall of the throat when swallowing, blocking the nasal passage.

The soft palate is also the working mechanism for speech, closing and opening depending what type of sound is being made to let air out.

Clefting of the lip or palate happens when there is an incomplete fusion of the palate development in the womb typically in the sixth to eighth week of pregnancy that results in an opening in the upper lip, palate, or both. It can vary in its severity.

"Cleft palate is an abnormal gap or opening in the roof of the mouth," explained plastic and reconstructive surgeon Vani Prasad.

"It can be very minor, just a change in the shape of the lip, or a small scar from the lip to the nose.

"It can be incomplete cleft lip meaning the lip has a visible gap, but the nose is not affected, or if it's complete, the cleft can affect the nose and extend into the gum."

As is the case for Emma, a cleft palate can be isolated not accompanied by a cleft lip. In others the cleft palate and lip can occur together.

"We do see babies with soft and hard cleft palate, plus a complete cleft lip," said Dr Prasad, who's based at the Australian Craniofacial Unit in Adelaide.

Cleft lip and palate management usually involves a multidisciplinary team of medical staff including surgeons, speech therapists, dentists and psychologists.

(Getty Images: China Photos)

Cleft lip and palate management usually involves a multidisciplinary team of medical staff including surgeons, speech therapists, dentists and psychologists.

Getty Images: China Photos

The extent of the clefting, and whether the palate or lip is cleft in isolation can determine treatment and management, as well as the impact it has on quality of life.

Being born with a cleft palate can affect speech, hearing, the ability to eat, as well as physical appearance not to mention the potential for being a frequent flyer at the hospital or doctor's office.

But Emma's doctors are hopeful her most recent surgery is her final surgery on her palate.

Emma's cleft palate meant that sometimes food and spit would come back out her nose, because the palate didn't close against the back of her throat.

(Supplied: Emma Johnston)

Emma's cleft palate meant that sometimes food and spit would come back out her nose, because the palate didn't close against the back of her throat.

Her surgeon, Dr Mark Moore from the Australian Craniofacial Unit, said 18-year-old Emma's palate was working hard when she spoke, but not going far enough to close the space with the back of her throat.

"We had to look at operations to make her palate longer," Dr Moore said.

"We made a cut in her palate along the soft palate and then made cuts on either side like a 'z' - like Harry Potter sort of on the forehead."

The surgery was successful and Emma was thrilled to be finished with her surgeries.

"I really wanted to see the seal in the back of my throat to know that I was doing that properly, it was brilliant," she said.

"On the outside I don't look any different to anyone else, now all the surgeries are done.

"It's terrifying, but it's a good terrifying. It's amazing."

As is the case with many babies with cleft palate, Emma had difficulty breastfeeding, which was one of the motivations to operate within a year of her birth.

Another reason for doing the cleft lip or palate repair operation early is to allow more time for proper speech development.

If the initial repair surgery is delayed it can impede speech development.

But the timing of cleft lip and palate repair is a subject of some controversy in the medical community, because a compromise has to be made regarding risk, facial growth, scarring, and psychological factors.

Most plastic surgeons think the ideal age for undergoing cleft palate repair surgery is between 6 to 18 months of age, and even earlier for cleft lip repair.

(Supplied: Chris Sprod)

Most plastic surgeons think the ideal age for undergoing cleft palate repair surgery is between 6 to 18 months of age, and even earlier for cleft lip repair.

Not everyone can have surgery for cleft palate or lip repair early in life though.

This is particularly an issue in developing countries in Asia, where the one in every 500 babies has a cleft palate and lip compared to one in 1,000 in white populations.

"In the past in some Asian countries, it's been because of a deficiency in folic acid," Dr Prasad said.

"A deficiency in folic acid can cause increased risk of neural tube defects, which can increase risk of cleft palate or craniofacial disorders," he said.

Dr Prasad said that pregnant women taking anti-convulsive medication for epilepsy can also have increased risk of their baby having cleft palate or lip.

Going through the process of cleft repair surgery with your baby can be hard, but Dr Prasad and his colleagues try to encourage parents to be positive about the change they are experiencing, as well as that of their baby.

"We tell parents of babies with cleft lip to think of their baby as getting to have two different smiles," he said.

"They have one smile before the repair surgery, and a different one after the surgery, so we tell them to enjoy both of their baby's smiles."

Scientists are still trying to narrow down the causes of cleft lip and palate, but research suggests there is some sort of genetic link.

In 2018, scientists identified four genes that, when functioning correctly, lead to the tissues around the hard palate becoming 'sticky' and fusing together the two sides of the palate.

The study, published in the American Journal of Human Genetics, focused on families in which multiple people were affected by cleft lip or palate, suggesting there could be an alteration within a single gene, said Tony Roscioli from Neuroscience Research Australia, who was an author on the study.

"We were able to identify specific gene mutations that were present in people with cleft lip palate in a number of families," Dr Roscioli said.

"A single genetic cause that was highly predictive."

Of the 209 people from 72 families in the study, the four genes accounted for the cleft palate or lip in 15 per cent of them, a small but significant step forward in understanding the genetic causes of clefting, according to Dr Roscioli.

"It is premature for [finding specific treatments], but perhaps ways of altering the function of these genes could be identified in the future that could lead to non-surgical treatments," he said.

Dr Roscioli was involved in another study published this year in the journal Human Mutations which identified one new gene that causes a form of cleft palate that's associated with skeleton abnormalities, and another new gene that causes isolated cleft lip and palate.

"It increases the number of genes known but also [suggests] that the genes work together," he said.

"It can also mean that there are extra genes available for people who wish to have genetic testing for cleft lip and palate."

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Cleft palate or lip is one of the most common birth defects worldwide, but do you know what it is? - ABC News

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Daughter drew inspiration from mom in battle with breast cancer, stresses early detection – Gainesville Daily Register

Six weeks before Carla Klements wedding more than 35 years ago, Klements mother, Pat Walterscheid, was diagnosed with breast cancer. But the experience of the mother ended up inspiring the daughter when Klement faced her own battle with breast cancer almost three decades later.

I grew up thinking I could get it, Klement, a Muenster resident, recalled this week ahead of National Mammography Day, Friday, Oct. 18. She had long suspected she might be among the small number of people about one in 400 who have the breast cancer gene, a mutation in one of two genes labeled BRCA which makes a person significantly more susceptible to developing breast cancer, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation Inc. Klement began getting yearly mammograms at age 30 because of her family history and theyd come back clear through March 2013.

In September that year, though, she felt a lump she could swear wasnt there the day before. She called her doctor to have it diagnosed as soon as possible and a biopsy confirmed it was stage 1 breast cancer.

Klement chose to undergo a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery on Oct. 28, 2013, followed by 12 rounds of chemotherapy.

By the time I had the surgery, she said, her cancer had already progressed to stage 2, meaning it had invaded the lymph nodes.

Growing up, with her having it, we were told to do the self-exams and all that stuff but I didnt, as most people dont, Klement recalled. My main thing is early detection if you find something, have it checked out right away. Had I not, had I waited even two months, I dont know where it wouldve led since it was so aggressive.

The day you find it, go to the doctor. And if its nothing, great. Id err on that side rather than wait.

The National Breast Cancer Foundation pointed out on its website that with early detection, the vast majority of breast cancer cases can be successfully treated and thats true even for people who have a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation.

Carla Klement wearing one of her scarves in December 2013, while she was going through chemotherapy.

Klement said she struggled most with losing her hair during chemotherapy, finding strength in wearing a collection of printed scarves she purchased to wear instead of a wig. These became kind of like my armor, she said, holding one of the scarves this week.

She also looked to her mothers experience.

Because she was a survivor, my mindset was, she can do it, I can do it. Had she not been a survivor, my attitude may have been different. But I thought, well she can do it, then I can do it.

During the process, Klement chose to be tested for the BRCA gene and was found to have it.

I have two daughters of my own, so I wanted to do it for them, she said.

Klements mother, Walterscheid, also of Muenster, said shes had one recurrence of breast cancer since her diagnosis, single mastectomy and radiation and chemotherapy in 1984. In 2003 when she was diagnosed again, the cancer was treated with a lumpectomy, or a surgery to remove only part of the breast instead of the entire organ, followed by chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

Walterscheid continues to see her oncologist once a year. During her last visit, she had a 3D mammogram instead of a traditional one, she said, and thought it was more comfortable than traditional mammography.

Because its relatively new, 3D mammography isnt yet considered the standard of care for breast cancer screening, according to However, its being adopted more quickly than traditional 2D mammography was, the charity states on its website. According to 2018 statistics from the FDA, about 4,000 facilities out of 8,726 certified mammography facilities in the country offer 3D mammograms.

Both women say their initial diagnoses changed their attitude toward life.

Walterscheid, who still had two children in school in 1984, said it makes you wonder if youre going to live to see them grow up.

Ive got great-grandkids now, she added, smiling.

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Deepak Chopra Has Never Been Sick – The New Yorker

Deepak Chopra, the doctor and self-help guru, who turns seventy-three next week, has written more than one book for every year he has been alive. Chopra was born in New Delhi and studied medicine in India before moving to the United States, in 1970. After practicing as an endocrinologist in Massachusetts, he became involved in the Transcendental Meditation movement. He eventually relocated to the West Coast, left T.M. behind, and became a spiritual adviser to Michael Jackson and other celebrities. A quarter century later, his books have sold millions of copies, and his television appearancesespecially alongside Oprah Winfreyhave made him perhaps the most prominent advocate for alternative medicine recognizable around the world.

Chopras work evinces a consistent skepticism toward the scientific consensushe has called into question whether evolution is merely a process of the mindand a firm belief that mental health can determine physical reality. He has written of a place called perfect healththe title of one of his books, and now the slogan for one of his wellness retreatsin which human beings can go somewhere internally that is free from disease, that never feels pain, that cannot age or die. These beliefs have made him controversial among doctors and scientists. In 1998, Chopra was awarded the satirical Ig Nobel Prize for his unique interpretation of quantum physics as it applies to life, liberty, and the pursuit of economic happiness. A random Chopra-quote generator is popular online, and Chopra has been called out for tweeting and writing phrases that, in the words of one paper, may have been constructed to impress upon the reader some sense of profundity at the expense of a clear exposition of meaning or truth. (Example: Attention and intention are the mechanics of manifestation.)

Chopras latest book is Metahuman: Unleashing Your Infinite Potential, and it touches on a number of themes that have been present throughout his career: that human beings can become metahuman by reaching a new place of awareness; that science has served to block the way to the absolute freedom that metahuman holds out; and that self-improvement can move creation itself. I recently spoke by phone with Chopra. During our conversation, which has been edited for length and clarity, we discussed controversial remarks he has made about cancer and AIDS, his claim to have never been even a tiny bit sick, and whether there is a reality that exists independently of our own minds.

How do you define yourself and what you do?

I would say that to define oneself is to limit oneself. But Ive had various roles through my life. Im an internist, an endocrinologist, a neuro-endocrinologist; a teacher of integrative medicine and an author; a husband, a son, a father, a child.

I know you are a doctor, but does thinking about yourself as a doctor seem limiting to you in some way?

It seems limiting to me, but I would say I think of myself closer to a healer. Because, when I look at healing and the origins of the word healing, its related to the word whole. So wholeness means everything, including body, mind, and spirit, and the environment. I think of myself as a doctor who is interested in the physical body, but also in all aspects of human experiencehuman emotions, human thinking, human experience, and, ultimately, in understanding ourselves beyond the conditioned mind. So I would say I want to be a healer. Thats my aspiration.

At what point in your career did you become famous?

Some people think it happened with The Oprah Winfrey Show, in 1993, when she did a one-to-one with me for a book called Ageless Body, Timeless Mind, which then stayed on the New York Times best-seller list for thirty-some weeks. Actually, my most well-known book is The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success. But I have to say that Oprah helped me a lot with the launch of my career, and shes been an ally ever since. Weve taught six million people meditation online together.

How many books have you written now?

This is my ninetieth book.

Would you say your writing process has changed between your first and your ninetieth?

Yes. My process was more structured in the past. And now I feel its more a flow than anything else. I used to always be told by media and publishers, and even the BBC when I was in England, to dumb everything down, and I used to, and I dont anymore. I feel free to say whatever I want to.

Ive been looking for a through line in your work, and the one that Ive noticed most is the idea that our minds can determine reality, or that theres a connection between our minds and reality. Is that a fair way of phrasing it?

Yes. The correct phrase would be that our experience of the world, and of our body, is a projection of our conditioned mind. So, when youre born, you have no human constructs. Youre looking at the world as a messy, gooey experience of color, form, shapes, sounds, pictures, smells, tastes, and random thoughts, which are yet not clear. But then a construction process begins. And so youre told, Youre male, youre of a religious background, ethnic background, nationality, gender. And that begins to create a provisional identity. And then that provisional identity has perceptual experiences but interprets them as the physical body and the world. But, in the deeper reality, theres no such thing. All there is is consciousness experiencing itself perceptually, as perceptual activity, which is species-specific. You dont see the same world as a painted lady, a species of butterfly that smells the world with an antenna, tastes the world with her feet. So what is the picture of the world to a snake that navigates through the experience of infrared?

If you and a snake perceive the world differently and experience it differently, does that mean that the world is actually different? Or does it just mean that we perceive it differently?

We can only experience a narrow band with our perceptual reality. So there is no such thing as a physical world. Thats where Im going. Our experience of the world is species- and culture-specific. And that is what we interpret as fundamental reality.

You once said, Consciousness is key to evolution and we will soon prove that. What did you mean?

You know, Ive said in the past that Darwinian evolution is a human constructthat, ultimately, consciousness drives at least human evolution. We can direct our evolution by the choices we make. And now that we know the science of epigenetics and neuroplasticity, we can see very clearly that, because we are self-aware, unlike other species, we can consciously direct our evolution. And that is what epigenetics and neuroplasticity are showing us.

Epigenetics is not that we can direct our evolution, though, is it?

Well, we can trigger the activity of certain genes and decrease the activity of certain other genes. So, when people practice self-reflection or mindful awareness, or they have the experience of transcendence, you can actually see which genes get activated and which genes get deactivated. Theres a mechanism to that. So you can actually activate the genes that cause self-regulation or homeostasis, and actually decrease the activity of the genes that cause inflammation. So what is healing? It is nothing but self-regulation or homeostasis. And what is disease is mostly linked to chronic inflammation. Only five per cent of disease-related gene mutations are fully penetrant, which means they guarantee the disease. That includes everything, from Alzheimers to cancer to autoimmune disease. Only five per cent is related to genetic determinism. The rest is influenced by life style. [Gerard Karsenty, the chair of the Department of Genetics and Development at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, says, Those assumptions include non-Mendelian diseases. It is for now hard to precisely assess in multigenic diseases the extent of the contribution of gene mutations and the one of lifestyle taken in a broad sense. This is particularly true for autoimmune diseases that hit at all ages, including during childhood and with a higher incidence in women.]

You tweeted, An emerging view, alternate to Darwins random mutations & natural selection is that consciousness may be the driver of complexity/evolution.

Correct. But there are a few people who agree with that.

So, you know, scientists generally are nave realists. Which means they look at the picture of the world, and thats what it is.

What do you do, if not that?

Ive become aware of that which is having the experience rather than the experience, which in spiritual traditions is called the self. The body, the mind, and the world are the self.

It seems like all of these things are fitting under the rubric of what we were talking about earlier about consciousness and reality. I know you once said something like, The moon doesnt exist unless someone sees it. Is that right?

No, no. That was Einsteins quote, by the way. He actually said, I refuse to believe that the moon doesnt exist if no one is looking at it. [In his biography of Einstein, Abraham Pais recounted an interaction he had with the physicist who asked me if I really believed that the moon exists only if I look at it.] Thats a statement coming from a nave realist. The moon that you and I see is a human experience. A horseshoe crab doesnt have that experience living in the depths of the ocean.

Einstein was incredulously asking someone whether they really believe that the moon only exists when its looked at. Correct?

Yes. The moon is an experience in human consciousness. The moon that you and I see is an experience in human consciousness. If there was no human consciousness, no body, mind to go with it, there would be no awareness of the moon.

But the moon would still be there, correct?

How do you prove that? How do you validate that? How do you disprove that? How do you prove an unobserved phenomenon?

The moon is a human story. The universe is a human story. Its a human construct, or human experiences, and interpreted by the human mind.

So this would be akin to the question, which Im sure weve all heard, that if a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it, does it make a sound?

Correct. The sound is only in consciousness. Before that its a vibration of air molecules.

But the vibration of air molecules are occurring. Correct?

The vibration of air molecules is a human construct for a human mode of knowing and experience in human consciousness, so yes, they are constructs. The air molecules are as much of a construct as latitude and longitude, as The New Yorker, as Greenwich Mean Time, as money, as Wall Street, as Manhattan.

Im not sure what that means.

Human constructs are human ideas around modes of human knowing.

I see.

So an atom, a molecule, a force field, vibration of moleculesthese are all human constructs.

So its not that the tree is making a sound and we just happen to be there or not there to hear it. Its that the sound is only present to the degree that we are also present.

Actually, there is no tree and there is no sound and there is no body and there is no mind. Theres only consciousness thats having an experience. The rest is human constructs.

In your book Quantum Healing, you wrote, Research on spontaneous cures of cancer conducted in both the United States and Japan has shown that just before the cure appears, almost every patient experiences a dramatic shift in awareness. He knows that he will be healed and he feels that the force responsible is inside himself, but not limited to him. It extends beyond his personal boundaries throughout all of nature. Suddenly he feels, I am not limited to my body. All that exists around me is part of myself. At that moment, such patients apparently jumped to a new level of consciousness that prohibits the existence of cancer. Then the cancer cells either disappear, literally overnight in some cases, or at the very least stabilize without damaging the body any further.

So if you were a scientist and you saw one case of that, one in a billion, youd want to know the mechanism. And I feel the mechanism is a return to fundamental homeostasis, which means self-regulation, and total absence of fear, including the fear of death. Because your identity is no longer your body-mind.

And so is that more important than medicine?

No, I think medicine is very useful for acute illness. If you have pneumonia, I certainly tell you to take an antibiotic. You break your leg, Id have you see an orthopedic surgeon. If you have cancer, there are many types of chemotherapy and radiation and stem-cell therapies and immunotherapies that will help you. But, in todays age, if you dont understand that integrating that with good sleep, with meditation, with stress management, with mindfulness, with healthy emotions, with good food that actually changes the activity of your microbiomeif you dont conform to that, then youre out of date.

This is from your book Perfect Health: There exists in every person a place that is free from disease, that never feels pain, that cannot age or die. When you go to this place, limitations which all of us accept cease to exist. They are not even entertained as a possibility. This is the place called perfect health. Visits to this place may be very brief, or they may last for many years. Even the briefest visit, however, instills a profound change. As long as you are there, the assumptions that hold true for ordinary existence are altered. If you can be in this place, why would you necessarily need medicine to stay healthy?

We dont. Ive never used medicine myself. Im seventy-three years old, never been in the hospital, never had surgery. Cant even remember having a cold.

You would vaccinate your children, correct?

Of course I would, if Im in a surrounding where there is... You know, I would not vaccinate a child in New York City for polio, because it doesnt exist. But I would for measles, because it does exist.

Even if the child was in this state that you call perfect health?

The child is in a state of perfect health if its born normally. Its in a state of homeostasis. But we also live in a world that has environmental toxins, that has climate change, that has extinction of species, that has poison in our food chain, and that is ready for extinction. And all of that is the projection of our collective insanity.

You say, The cause of disease is often extremely complex, but one thing can be said for certain: no one has proved that getting sick is necessary.

Right. My own situation says that.

Because youve never been sick.


Because youre in this place called perfect health?

Because Im aware of being aware and I can choose the experiences I want and I focus on love, compassion, joy, equanimity, and Im beyond the fear of personal death because I dont identify with my provisional, personal, so-called identity. The question you asked me when we started, How do you define yourself?I dont.

If we were all in this place, would we need medicine?

Yes. Because of the world weve created, we would, yes.

But not because

And, besides that, the ecosystem is a predatory play of consciousness where, you know, its a recycling of experience. Birth, death, illness: they are part of our provisional identity, but I dont identify with that identity. If you do not identify with the experience, if consciousness that is aware of experience, if the awareness of experience is not the experience, then youre intrinsically free of the experience. Do you know what Im saying?

Im not sure.

O.K. If you are aware of a thought, then youre not the thought, youre the awareness of the thought.

Dr. Stacia Kenet Lansman, whos a leading vaccine skeptic, cited your work as an inspiration. Do you

I have never been against vaccination.

I know you havent.

I have never spoken against medical treatment or intervention. You should do whatever works.

But do you worry that the idea that we can achieve this place of perfect health based on our own mental state can give license to anti-scientific thinking, like we see in the anti-vaccine movement?

You asked me if I worry about that. I dont worry about anything.

Which is why you havent gotten sick.

But people can take what I say and interpret it how they want to. Theres also a difference between scientism and science. Science is a very neutral activity: theories, observation, experiments, validation or invalidation. Period. I am a big proponent of science as the greatest adventure that human consciousness has taken. With scientism, its a different thing. Its being a fundamentalist and believing that science has all the solutions for human problems, including the existential dilemmas we have about our identity, our fear of old age, infirmity, and death.

There was an interview you gave many years ago, with Tony Robbins, about AIDS. Hed put forth the idea that H.I.V. is not the source of AIDS. You said, H.I.V. may be a precipitating agent in a susceptible host.The material agent is never the cause of the disease.It may be the final factor in inducing the full-blown syndrome in somebody whos already susceptible. He then asked,Butwhat made them susceptible? You answered, Their own interpretations of the whole reality that theyre participating in. Do you still feel that way about H.I.V. and AIDS?

I still feel that pathogens are precipitating factors in susceptible hosts, and that the outcome of illness and recovery is very complex. Now, having said that, when you can find a single agent that you can either attack or get rid of, then, of course, thats the solution. You know, you and I can be exposed to a pneumococcus and one person gets pneumonia and the other doesnt. So you can see that illness is not just one mechanistic happening, an encounter with the pathogen. It has to do with everything. Are you deeply rested, are you stressed, whats your nutrition, what are your personal relationships, what is your emotional stateall of these things have an influence. Every experience we have is ultimately metabolized into a molecule in the body. If I gave you bad news right now, your blood pressure would go up. In fact, if I sent a mean tweet to Mr. Trump, his blood pressure would go up even further.

You went on to say, I have a lot of patients with so-called AIDS, this label that weve given them, that are healthier than most of the population thats living in downtown Boston. They havent had a cold in ten years. And then Robbins said, But someone has told them they have this disease. You said, Yes, somebody has told them that. And Robbins says, And they bought into it. And you said, Exactly.

Listen. You can do a five-hour interviewyou can edit it into any way you want. You can take statements out of context.

No, thats the whole context.

And then you can say, This is what you said. Right? I had that experience myself as a physician. I said to the patient, You have cancer. Immediately, he looked like he was going to have a stroke. He was going to faint. And then I realized I read the wrong chart and I said, Sorry, that was somebody else. In two seconds I could see him recover from high blood pressure, sticky platelets, a jittery heart, and so on. So, you know, there is a lot more to reality than just a simple diagnosis and the label.

But to go on to the point youre just making now, about diagnosis, when Robbins said about the diagnosis of AIDS, People are accepting this, and when they accept this, what happens to them? You replied, When they accept it, then they make it happen. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy. Is that what youre saying?

Yeah. I might have said that. And, if I did, I regret it.

What I say today is, Believe the diagnosis, but dont believe the prognosis.

Youve been criticized before for selling products that people claim can help cure cancer or other diseases via meditation.

No, Ive never claimed that. No.


If you find a reference of that, let me know.

Well, there was a video called Return to Wholeness: A Mind-Body Approach to Healing Cancer. And the release about it says, Meditation and visualization are two of the most

Right. That video was a program to help people visualize and get into a relaxed state. I believe it was promoted as that on my Web site until I became aware of it, and then it was taken off.

And then you took it down?

Yeah. It was actually an artificial-intelligence program for meditation and self-regulation. And, by the way, used at many cancer-therapy clinics across the world as an aid to relaxation. [A member of Chopras staff named Cancer Treatment Centers of America as one of the clinics that use the video, but a representative for the treatment centers was unable to verify this.]

So, when you say in your best-sellers, like Super Brain, that increased self-awareness can reduce the risks of aging and help people achieve freedom and bliss, do you feel that youre doing that at all, or not?

I am. Of course. Im seventy-three years old, and I dont think my biological age is seventy-three. In fact, I have publicly declared that I am slowing down my aging process. And I think you can go on social media and look at all the pictures over the last few years and you can see, physically, that I am not looking as old, or feeling as old, as I was twenty-five years ago. I know what Ive said is outrageous, but, if people actually listen carefully, they will see that they determine a lot of what goes into well-being and health. And, ultimately, I dont think that health is physical at all. Because, ultimately, we are all going to die, and all going to have some kind of infirmity. But most of what we do is creating anxiety from living a full life in the present moment.

So you feel that youve reached a different stage of human existence?

Im just following the example of people who have lived long, healthy lives without any infirmity and died peacefully in meditation. In the Indian tradition, its called mahasamadhithe big meditation.

When youre selling books by saying that theres a network of intelligence in the human body that has the potential to defeat cancer, heart disease, and even aging itself, is that not selling to people that cancer can be beaten by something other than medicine?

Have you read the book? Or have you read criticisms of the book?

Ive read several of the books, and some criticisms.

So then you have to make up your own mind. Im not a purveyor of false hope. In fact, I think the term false hope is an oxymoron. Either you have hope or you dont. And those that have hope do better than those who dont.

So there is no false hope?

Its up to you how you interpret this, and it doesnt actually affect me. You know, Im at a stage in my life where Ive gone beyond criticism and/or flattery. I dont need that.

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Deepak Chopra Has Never Been Sick - The New Yorker

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Drug Treats Inflammation Related to Genetic Heart Disease – Technology Networks

When young athletes experiences sudden cardiac death as they run down the playing field, it's usually due to arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy (ACM), an inherited heart disease. Now, Johns Hopkins researchers have shed new light on the role of the immune system in the progression of ACM and, in the process, discovered a new drug that might help prevent ACM disease symptoms and progression to heart failure in some patients.

"We realized that heart muscle inflammation in ACM is much more complicated than we thought, but also might provide a therapeutic strategy," saysStephen Chelko, Ph.D., assistant professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and senior author of the new paper, inSept. inCirculation.

In ACM, patients often harbor mutations in any of the five genes that make up the cardiac desmosome -- the gluelike material that holds heart cells together and helps coordinate mechanical and electrical synchronization of heart cells. Because of this, it's often called "a disease of the cardiac desmosome." In patients with ACM, heart cells pull apart over time, and these cells are replaced with damaged and inflamed scar tissue. These scars can increase risk of instances of irregular heart rhythms and lead to sudden cardiac death if the scar tissue causes the heart wall to stiffen and renders it unable to pump.

If a person is aware they carry an ACM-causing genetic mutation, doctors help them avoid cardiac death through lifestyle changes, such as exercise restriction, and medications that keep their heart rate low. However, there are currently no drugs that treat the underlying structural defects of the desmosome. People who live for many years with ACM still accumulate scar tissue and inflammation in their hearts, leading to chronic heart disease.

"We tended in the past to view ACM as something that kills due to a sudden arrhythmic event," said Chelko. "But now we're starting to also see it as a chronic inflammatory disease that can progress more slowly over time, leading to heart failure."

Chelko and his colleagues wanted to determine the molecular cause of inflammation in the hearts of people with ACM. So they studied mice with an ACM-causing mutation, as well as heart muscle cells generated from stem cells isolated from an ACM patient. They found that the inflammation associated with the disease arose from two separate causes. First, they noticed high levels of macrophages, a type of immune cell that's normally found at sites of inflammation, such as around cuts or scrapes that are healing.

"Macrophages are usually the good guys who help heal a wound and then leave," said Chelko. "But in ACM they're permanently setting up shop in the heart, which, over time, reduces its function."

Chelko's team also found that in ACM, the heart cells themselves are triggered by a protein known as nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-B) to produce chemicals called cytokines, which act as homing beacons for other inflammatory cells and molecules. When the researchers treated mice or isolated cells with a drug blocking NF-B, heart cells stopped producing many of these cytokines, leading to decreased inflammation and infiltration of inflammatory cells. In mouse models of ACM, animals treated with the NF-B-blocking drug Bay-11-7082 had a twofold increase in heart function, measured by how much blood their hearts could pump over time compared with untreated ACM animals. They also had a twofold reduction of damaged and inflammatory scar tissue in the heart.

More than one-third of patients with ACM who die of sudden cardiac death have no previous cardiac symptoms, so wouldn't ever know to seek treatment. However, for relatives of these people who discover that they carry a genetic mutation causing ACM -- or those who discover the mutation for other reasons -- a drug could help stave off long-term heart disease, Chelko said.

While the Bay-11-7082 drug is currently only used in the lab for experimental purposes, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved canakinumab, a drug that targets the same inflammatory pathway, for use in juvenile arthritis and a collection of rare auto-inflammatory syndromes. Canakinumab is also being studied for use in coronary artery disease. Chelko's group is now investigating whether this drug would have the same effect as Bay-11-7082 in ACM.

"We're very excited to have found an FDA-approved drug that can reduce heart inflammation in ACM, and we're eager to do more research to ultimately help those who carry these genetic mutations," said Chelko.

Reference:Chelko, et al. (2019) Therapeutic Modulation of the Immune Response in Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy. Circulation. DOI:

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Drug Treats Inflammation Related to Genetic Heart Disease - Technology Networks

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Analysis on Worldwide Autologous Stem Cell Based Therapies Market Inclinations Exhibit Growing Demand During The Period Until 2025 – Wheel Chronicle

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Sphingosine 1-phosphate: Lipid signaling in pathology and therapy – Science Magazine

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Research Roundup: Genomic Dark Matter Mutation and More – BioSpace

Every week there are numerous scientific studies published. Heres a look at some of the more interesting ones.

Mutation Found in Dark Matter of the Genome New Target for Cancer

The so-called dark matter of the genome is the non-coding regions that make up about 98% of the genome. Researchers at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) recently identified a novel cancer-driven mutation in this region that is linked to brain, liver and blood cancer. They published the two studies in the journal Nature.

Non-coding DNA, which makes up 98% of the genome, is notoriously difficult to study and is often overlooked since it does not code for proteins, said Lincoln Stein, co-lead of the two research studies and Head of Adaptive Oncology at OICR. By carefully analyzing these regions, we have discovered a change in one letter of the DNA code that can drive multiple types of cancer. In turn, weve found a new cancer mechanism that we can target to tackle the disease.

The mutation is dubbed U1-snRNA, and it appears to disrupt normal RNA splicing, which changes the transcription of genes that drive cancer. The mutation was identified in tumors of patients with specific subtypes of brain cancer and was found in almost all of the samples. The cancer was sonic hedgehog medulloblastoma. It was also found in samples of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and hepatocellular carcinoma.

Our unexpected discovery uncovered an entirely new way to target these cancers that are tremendously difficult to treat and have high mortality rates, said Michael Taylor, pediatric neurosurgeon and senior scientist in Development and Stem Cell Biology and Garron Family Chair in in Childhood Cancer Research at The Hospital for Sick Children and co-lead of the studies. Weve found that with one typo in the DNA code, the resultant cancers have hundreds of mutant proteins that we might be able to target using currently available immunotherapies.

Diagnosing Lyme Disease in 15 Minutes

About 300,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme disease each year. Borrelia burgdorferi is transmitted by the bite of infected Ixodes ticks, and if untreated, can cause neurologic, cardiac, and rheumatologic complications. Current testing involves two complex tests, ELISA and western blot. Researchers have developed a rapid microfluidic test that can provide comparable results in as little as 15 minutes. It will require more refinement and testing before widespread use.

Gene Therapy for Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration Shows Promise

Research was recently presented on six patients who received a gene therapy for wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The patients have gone at least six months without continued injections for the disease that were previously required every four to six weeks. The therapy, which is injected into the eye, generates a molecule much like aflibercept, a broadly used anti-VEGF drug.

How Dementia Spreads Throughout Brain Networks

Frontotemporal dementia (FDT) is similar to Alzheimers disease, but tends to hit patients earlier and affects different parts of the brain. Researchers studied how well neural network maps made from brain scans in healthy people could predict the spread of brain atrophy in FTD patients over several years. They recruited 42 patients at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center with a form of FTD and 30 with another form. They received MRI scans and then follow-up scans a year later to determine how the disease had progressed. They found that the standardized connectivity maps were able to predict the spread of the disease.

Mucus and Microbes: A Therapeutic Gold Mine.

A specific type of molecule called glycans that are found in mucus prevent bacteria from communicating with each other. Mucus also prevents the bacteria from forming infectious biofilms. It is also pointed out that more than 200 square meters of our bodies are lined with mucus. There are hundreds of different types of glycans found in mucus, and most of them are responsible for suppressing bacteria. Katharina Ribbeck, a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, says, What we have in mucus is a therapeutic gold mine.

Mechanisms that Regulate Brain Inflammation

The role of brain inflammation in diseases like Alzheimers and Parkinsons is becoming better understood. Researchers recently identified mechanisms that regulate brain inflammation, which has the potential to open new avenues for treating and preventing these diseases. The scientists found that a protein called TET2 modulates the immune response in microglia, immune cells in the brain, during inflammation. In mice engineered not to have TET2 in the microglia, neuroinflammation is reduced. Normally, TET2 with other proteins regulates the activity of genes by removing specific chemical markers from DNA, but TET2 appears to behave differently in microglia.

Pilot Study: Even Short-Term Vaping Causes Lung Inflammation

Research out of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center found cellular inflammation was caused by e-cigarette, i.e., vaping, use in both long-term smokers and people who did not smoke. They used bronchoscopy to evaluate for inflammation and smoking-related effects and found a measurable increase in inflammation after only four weeks of vaping without nicotine or flavors. The amount of inflammation was small compared to the control group, but the data suggests that even short-term use can result in inflammatory changes at a cellular level. Inflammation in smoking is a driver of lung cancer and other respiratory diseases.

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SIDS May Be Linked To A Genetic Inability To Digest Milk, Study Finds – Moms

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), sometimes known as crib death, occurs when an infant under the age of one dies inexplicably.The typically healthy child will often die while sleeping and is the leading cause of death of children between the ages of one month and one year, claiming approximately 3000 lives a year. There has been little known about the cause of SIDS but new research is now showing that some form of SIDS could be linked to a genetic inability to digest milk.

A study out of theUniversity of Washington School of Medicine focused on the "mitochondrial tri-functional protein deficiency, a potentially fatal cardiac metabolic disorder caused by a genetic mutation in the gene HADHA."

It found that newborns with had the genetic mutation are unable toproperly digest some of the fats found in breastmilk, resulting in cardiac arrest. It found that "the heart cells of affected infants do not convert fats into nutrients properly," and once these fats build up they can cause serious heart and heart health issues.

There are multiple causes for sudden infant death syndrome, said Hannele Ruohola-Baker, who is also associate director of the UW Medicine Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine. There are some causes which are environmental. But what were studying here is really a genetic cause of SIDS. In this particular case, it involves a defect in the enzyme that breaks down fat.

Lead author on the study Dr. Jason Miklassaid that it was his experience researching heart disease that prompted him to look at the possible link with SIDS. There was one particular study that had noted a link between children who had problems processing fats and who also had cardiac disease that caused him to delve a little deeper.

Miklas andRuohola-Baker teamed up to begin their own research study.If a child has a mutation, depending on the mutation the first few months of life can be very scary as the child may die suddenly,Miklas noted. An autopsy wouldnt necessarily pick up why the child passed but we think it might be due to the infants heart-stopping to beat.

Were no longer just trying to treat the symptoms of the disease, Miklas added. Were trying to find ways to treat the root problem. Its very gratifying to see that we can make real progress in the lab toward interventions that could one day make their way to the clinic.

Ruohola-Baker says their findings are a big breakthrough in understanding SIDS. There is no cure for this, she said. But there is now hope because weve found a new aspect of this disease that will innovate generations of novel small molecules and designed proteins, which might help these patients in the future.

Read Next:Babies May Not Be 'Designed' For Sleeping, According To SIDS Expert


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