Nitrates may increase colon cancer risk

A recent study suggests nitrates in drinking water were associated with a higher risk of colorectal cancer. Researchers from Aarhus University in Denmark reported in the International Journal of Cancer wrote that exposure to the highest nitrate levels raised the risk of colorectal cancer by 15%, compared with exposure to the lowest concentrations. These findings

Microbots Could Deliver Drugs by Tumbling Through the Body

A new type of microbot that moves by tumbling through almost any kind of terrain–even liquids–could help usher in a new medical era. The tiny machines could be used for various medical applications, including super-focused drug delivery, breaking up blood clots, or closing off bleeding vessels. The “microscale magnetic tumbling robot,” or μTUM (microTUM), is about

Highly Processed Foods Tied to Higher Cancer Risk

Every 10 percent dietary increase in packaged snacks, fizzy drinks, sugary cereals and other highly processed foods boosts the risk for cancer by 12 percent, new research suggests.    In several developed countries, ultra-processed foods may make up as much as 50 percent of the daily diet, the researchers noted. This includes convenience foods, such

California investigates Aetna as medical director admits under oath he never looked at records

It has been long understood that insurance companies make money by balancing collection of premiums with distribution of care. Accusations that this is tantamount to denying care for profits are hard to ignore after a recent revelation–under oath–that Aetna’s Medical Director routinely made decisions about whether or not to pay for care without ever looking

12% of Adults Meet Criteria for Functional Dyspepsia

Symptoms meeting the Rome IV criteria for functional dyspepsia were found in 12% of US adults and 8% of people in the UK and Canada, researchers reported in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology. The most common subtypes were postprandial distress syndrome, epigastric pain syndrome and both syndromes together. These individuals had more-impaired health and used more

Biomarkers Associated with Response to Vedolizumab

Vedolizumab is an anti-α4β7 monoclonal antibody approved for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).  A recent study finds that pretreatment α4β7 expression and α4β7 receptor saturation during maintenance therapy were identified as candidate biomarkers for vedolizumab response. This assay leads to promise that we will be able to identify good candidates for biologic therapies

FDA warns of opioid in loperamide

The FDA sent letters to manufacturers of loperamide, a longstanding and commonly used treatment for diarrhea, asking them to change the size of the drug’s packaging to limit the amount of opioid drugs in the package. The agency aims to discontinue the large bottles in which loperamide is often sold to deter its abuse. See

Bariatric surgery reduces risk for certain cancers

Bariatric surgery appears to reduce the risk for colon, breast, endometrial, pancreatic and other cancers, according to a review of medical data from 22,198 bariatric surgery patients. Overall, bariatric surgery was associated with a 40% risk reduction for 13 obesity-related cancers and a 23% reduction in risk for other cancers. See the article on Healio