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Hopes for HIV cure revived by African child in remission

Reuters Health News - July 24, 2017 - 5:37am
LONDON, (Reuters) - A South African child born with HIV has surprised experts by appearing to be effectively cured of the AIDS virus after just a year of treatment followed by eight and a half years drug-free.
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WRX STI Type RA NBR achieves incredible Nurburgring lap time

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 5:05am

There's no getting away from what a stunning piece of technology and automotive engineering the Porsche 918 Spyder was when it was revealed to the world a couple of years ago, and it was no surprise when it put in an amazing lap time at the world famous Nurburgring. It's only right then that we would have expected a genuine challenge to that lap time to come from some equally advanced hybrid hypercar, but Subaru has come extremely close to beating the 918's time without an electric motor in sight with its WRX STI Type RA NBR. To be fair to both Porsche and Subaru, the WRX STI Type RA NBR isn't exactly your run-of-the-mill car by any means.


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Snooty dead: World's oldest known manatee dies aged 69 in 'heartbreaking accident'

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 4:42am

The world’s oldest manatee has died in a “heartbreaking” accident at his Florida home a day after celebrating his 69th birthday. According to the South Florida Museum, a panel door leading out of the underwater tank which is normally bolted shut had been knocked loose.


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China says it wants to 'maintain stability' in disputed South China Sea

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 4:03am

By Panu Wongcha-um BANGKOK (Reuters) - Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Monday Beijing wanted to maintain stability in the South China Sea as it seeks alliances in the region amid tensions in the disputed waters. The United States has criticized China for disregarding international law by the construction and militarization of artificial islands in the South China Sea, undermining regional stability. China claims most of the energy-rich sea through which about $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.


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Mugabe lavishes sister-in-law with $60,000 birthday gift

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 3:46am

Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe lavished his sister-in-law with $60,000 on her birthday, state-owned media reported Monday, at a time when the country is running critically short of cash. The Herald newspaper said Mugabe, 93, and his wife Grace gave Junior Gumbochuma the money at her birthday celebrations, while the couple's children gave her $10,000. Gumbochuma, who is Grace Mugabe's elder sister, celebrated her 60th birthday on Sunday as Grace celebrated her 52nd at one of the Mugabes' farms in Shamva, northeast of Harare.


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Hopes for future HIV cure revived as South African child becomes third in remission

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 3:34am

A nine-year-old South African child with HIV has surprised experts by showing no symptoms of the virus having had just one year of treatment followed by eight and a half years with no drugs. This has given hope to the 37 million people worldwide infected with the virus that causes AIDS. However, the case is extremely rare and does not suggest a simple path to a cure, experts say. HIV patients typically have to keep taking antiretroviral (ART) drugs permanently to stop the virus from developing into AIDS. However, this child has no signs of the disease. Prince Harry and Rihanna get tested for HIV 00:52 The child was part of a clinical trial in which researchers were investigating the effect of treating HIV-positive babies in the first few weeks of life, and then stopping and starting the ART medicines while checking whether their HIV was being controlled. The case was revealed Monday at an AIDS conference in Paris. "It's a case that raises more questions than it necessarily answers," said Linda-Gail Bekker, president of the International AIDS Society, which is holding the conference in Paris this week. "It does raise the interesting notion that maybe treatment isn't for life," she said, adding that "it's clearly a rare phenomenon." Researchers believe that intensive treatment soon after infection could enable long-term remission of the disease.  Treatment with ART started when the child was almost nine weeks old but was interrupted at 40 weeks when the virus had been suppressed, and the child was monitored regularly for any signs of relapse. Naomi Campbell 'stands in solidarity' with millions of women on World AIDS day 00:27 The South African child, who contracted the virus from its mother, is the third who achieved a long remission using this approach.  Other similar cases include a French woman aged roughly 20 who was born with HIV and has her infection under control despite no HIV medicines since she was around six, and a Mississippi baby born with HIV in 2010 suppressed her infection for 27 months after stopping treatment before it reappeared in her blood. She was able to get the virus under control again after treatment resumed. However, researchers believe the South African case is the first instance of sustained virological control from a randomised trial of ART interruption following early treatment of infants. "At age 9.5 years, the child was clinically asymptomatic," the researchers said. UNAIDS, the United Nations HIV/AIDs agency, said last week that 19.5 million people worldwide are now receiving treatment. The vast majority of patients with HIV find that the virus increases in the body if they stop treatment, but this child was different, according to researchers. Sharon Lewin, an HIV expert at the University of Melbourne and co-chair of the IAS's HIV Cure and Cancer forum, said the case threw up possible insights into how the human immune system can controls HIV replication when treatment is interrupted. Yet in terms of the scientific search for a cure for HIV and AIDS, she said, it appeared only to confirm previous reports of similarly rare cases. "We know that very rarely, people who have had treatment and stopped it are then able to control the virus." The HIV/AIDs pandemic has killed around 35 million people worldwide since the 1980s.


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Injectable AIDS drug may work 'as well' as pills: study

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 3:28am

A two-drug cocktail injected every month or two may be just as effective as a daily pill at keeping the AIDS virus under control, said a study Monday that promised relief for millions. At present people have no option but to take lifelong, daily doses of anti-retroviral therapy (ART) which keeps the HIV virus under control, but does not kill it. People who forget to take their medication run the risk of the virus rebounding to make them ill, or developing resistance to the drugs they were using -- which would require a more expensive replacement.


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HIV fight advances with new drug cocktails, fresh vaccine hopes

Reuters Health News - July 24, 2017 - 3:14am
LONDON (Reuters) - Three decades after approval of the first-ever AIDS treatment, HIV medicine is seeing a new wave of innovation with scientists reporting positive data on Monday for improved drug cocktails and a novel experimental vaccine.
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Teenagers who laughed and filmed a disabled man as he drowned may face criminal charges

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 3:03am

Five boys between 14 and 16 years old reportedly laughed loudly when 32-year-old Jamel Dunn screamed and was submerged in a retention pond in Cocoa, Florida. The teenagers taunted and shouted insults at Dunn during the one-minute video as he struggled in the water and shouted for help. Under Florida law, it is not a punishable offence for a witness not to help a person in need, and the youths were likely not to face charges.


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Snooty, the world's oldest manatee, dies in shocking accident

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 3:01am

The world's oldest manatee was expected to live even longer before he died in a tragic accident. Museum staff were heartbroken when their pride and joy perished a day after celebrating his 69th birthday. The South Florida Museum chief executive Brynne Anne Besio explained the death of the beloved animal in a statement. He said Snooty’s death appeared to be “a heartbreaking accident” and added that staff were “devastated”. Museum provost and chief operating officer Jeff Rodgers said Snooty died after becoming stuck in a maintenance hatch leading off his tank. Credit: Tamara Lush/AP In a Facebook live broadcast, he said the animal shared his space with three young rescued manatees, Randall, Baca and Gale. “The hatch is big enough for a 1,300lb manatee to get in," he said. “It appears that he was not able to get himself back around to get himself out of the situation.” It is thought the animal drowned, but an necropsy is yet to be completed. He said the three other manatees were not injured. Credit: https://www.facebook.com/SouthFLMuseum  Mr Rogers said: "We’re all devastated about his passing. We’re reviewing what happened and will be conducting a full investigation. "Snooty was such a unique animal and he had so much personality that people couldn’t help but be drawn to him. As you can imagine, I – and our staff, volunteers and board members – considered him a star. We all deeply mourn his passing." Credit: https://www.facebook.com/SouthFLMuseum He said that staff had been greeting people at the door to the aquarium to tell them the heartbreaking news, and that staff had been helping adults break the news to their children. “Snooty’s very important to this community,” Rodgers said. “He’s been with us for 68 years – generations have grown up with that manatee. The emotional outpouring today… we grieve right along with these folks. We’ve given a lot of hugs on the front porch of the museum today. “A lot of people loved that manatee. We loved him too.”


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China to 'step up' troop deployment in India border row

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 2:07am

China warned on Monday that it will step up its troop deployment in a border dispute with India, vowing to defend its sovereignty at "whatever cost". The standoff started more than a month ago after Chinese troops started building a road on a remote plateau, which is disputed by China and Bhutan. Indian troops moved in to the flashpoint zone to halt the work, with China accusing them of violating its territorial sovereignty and calling for their immediate withdrawal.


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Jordanain men shot dead at Israel's Amman embassy

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 1:42am

Two Jordanians die in a shooting incident at Israel's heavily-guarded embassy in Amman, after one of them reportedly attacked a security guard with a screwdriver. David Doyle reports.


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California crews hold wildfire in check, let more residents go home

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 12:44am

California authorities battling a massive wildfire near Yosemite National Park lifted evacuation orders on Sunday for more residents but said firefighters may need almost two more weeks to fully contain the blaze. The Detwiler Fire was 45 percent contained, a slight improvement from Saturday, after burning 76,250 acres (30,857 hectares) and more than 130 structures, including 63 homes, since it broke out on Monday, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said. Evacuation orders were lifted by midday Sunday for much of the historic gold rush era town of Coulterville and nearby areas as firefighters completed firelines to contain the blaze, Cal Fire said in a statement.


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Nigeria releases first photo of ailing president in almost 80 days

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 12:37am

Nigeria released a photograph of President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday, the first in almost three months after he left the country on May 7 for medical leave in Britain. In stark contrast to his first absence, when numerous photos of a notably skeletal leader were published, the presidency had released no images of Buhari during his current medical leave until now. The president is on his second medical leave so far this year, the majority of which he has spent being treated for an undisclosed ailment in London.


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North Korea is Able to Launch a 'Limited Missile Attack,' Warns Top U.S. General

Pharma news - July 24, 2017 - 12:29am

Gen. Joe Dunford said it would be best for the U.S. to tackle Pyongyang's nuclear program through diplomatic and economic means


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US student freed after week held in China over taxi dispute

Pharma news - July 23, 2017 - 10:48pm

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — An American university student is free following a weeklong detention in China for allegedly injuring a taxi driver who was roughing up his mother during a fare dispute, in a case that drew objections over the student's treatment from U.S. lawmakers.


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USS Constitution returns to Boston's waters after repairs

Pharma news - July 23, 2017 - 10:48pm

BOSTON (AP) — The USS Constitution, the world's oldest commissioned warship still afloat, returned late Sunday to Boston's waters.


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The Latest: USS Constitution returns to water after repairs

Pharma news - July 23, 2017 - 10:47pm

BOSTON (AP) — The Latest on the USS Constitution's return to Boston Harbor (all times local):


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Israel under pressure over holy site, shooting at Amman embassy

Pharma news - July 23, 2017 - 10:37pm

Israel faced mounting pressure Monday over tougher security at a sensitive Jerusalem holy site after a shooting at its embassy in Jordan raised further concerns following a weekend of deadly unrest. It was not immediately clear whether the incident in Amman on Sunday -- in which two Jordanian men were killed and an Israeli seriously injured -- was linked to the dispute over the Jerusalem compound. Israel and Jordan are bound by a 1994 peace treaty, but tensions have been high over the new security measures at the site in annexed east Jerusalem.


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