In the News
Groundbreaking New Documentary “NURSES If Florence Could See Us Now” in Celebration of National Nurses Week
Massage Therapy Is a Powerful Tool For Pain Relief
Pain can negatively affect a person's quality of life and impede recovery from illness or injury. Recent research compiled by the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) suggests that massage can be a helpful pain management strategy for manually controlling symptoms in people suffering metastatic cancer and rheumatoid arthritis, among other illnesses, as well as post-cardiac surgery pain.
Massage Therapy for Improved Pain and Sleep in Metastatic Cancer Patients
Research published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that therapeutic massage at home for metastatic cancer patients can improve their overall quality of life by reducing pain and improving sleep quality. American Massage Therapy Association President Winona Bontrager, says of the study, "These findings suggest that cancer patients can also benefit from professional massage, both physically and mentally, providing the necessary comfort during advanced stages of the disease."
Massage Therapy for Decreased Pain in Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients
Research published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice showed that adults with rheumatoid arthritis may feel a decrease in pain, as well as greater grip strength and range of motion in writs and large upper joins, after receiving regular moderate-pressure massages during a 4-week period. "This research demonstrates the potential value of massage therapy for the estimated 1.3 million Americans living with this chronic condition, with women outnumbering men 2.5-14. Rheumatoid arthritis sufferers are encouraged to speak with their health care provider about the possibility of incorporating routine massage therapy into their current treatment plan to help manage painful symptoms," says American Massage Therapy Association President, Winona Bontrager.
Massage Therapy for Reduced Pain, Anxiety and Muscular Tension in Cardiac Surgery Patients
Research published in The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery indicates that massage therapy can significantly reduce pain, anxiety and muscular tension, as well as enhance relaxation and satisfaction after cardiac surgery. The American Massage Therapy Association acknowledges that cardiac surgery recovery is a very crucial time a patient must endure and this study further suggests that massage therapy can be a useful aid in making the road to recovery an easier journey.
View AMTA's Research Roundup Volume 3 online at amtamassage.org/researchroundup
Previous Research Roundups from AMTA
Volume 1: AMTA compiled its first research roundup in 2012 which highlighted the growing body of evidence showing that massage therapy can be an effective tool for a variety of health conditions, including:
- Osteoarthritis of the knee
- Inflammation after exercise
- Chronic low-back pain
Volume 2: AMTA issued its second research roundup in early 2013, which outlined medical research suggesting the benefits of massage therapy, including the role it can play in overall health and well-being in people of all ages, including:
- Enhanced immune function in preterm infants
- Decreased blood pressure and improved stability in older persons
- Reduced stress and anxiety in cancer patients
Massage Therapy Facts
- In 2012, AMTA estimates that massage therapy was an $8 to $12 billion dollar industry
- Between July 2011 and July 2012, roughly 34.5 million adult Americans (16 percent) had a massage at least once
- Results from AMTA's 16th annual consumer survey reveal more Americans are incorporating massage therapy into their regular health and wellness regimens to assist with medical conditions;
- 75 percent of consumers surveyed claim that their primary reason for receiving a massage was medical (43 percent) or stress (32 percent) related
- 89 percent of individuals believe that massage can be effective in reducing pain, with 29 percent of respondents admitting they have used massage therapy for pain relief
- 50 percent of people claim their doctor has either strongly recommended or encouraged them to get a massage
- The AMTA Find a Massage Therapist® free national locator service is available at findamassagetherapist.org. This locator allows people to find professional members of AMTA, who meet both association qualifications and state/local requirements to practice.
AbbVie and Alvine to Collaborate on Investigational Oral Therapy for Celiac Disease
AbbVie and Alvine Pharmaceuticals, a leader in celiac disease therapeutics development, announced today that they have entered into a global collaboration to develop a novel oral treatment for patients with celiac disease, currently in Phase 2 development. This collaboration builds on AbbVie’s expertise and leadership in the field of gastroenterology with its on-market products to treat Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and diseases associated with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency.
ALV003 is an investigational oral therapy composed of two recombinant, gluten specific enzymes (a cysteine protease (EP-B2) and a prolyl endopeptidase (PEP)), that degrade gluten in-vitro and in human clinical testing, and may reduce the symptoms and intestinal injury associated with celiac disease in patients attempting to adhere to a gluten-free diet. Data from a Phase 2a study reported at Digestive Disease Week (DDW) 2012, showed reduction of intestinal inflammation in patients exposed to gluten and treated with ALV003 compared to patients treated with placebo.
“Celiac disease is an area with significant unmet medical need,” said Scott Brun, M.D., vice president, pharmaceutical development, AbbVie. “Patients who currently are unable to completely avoid gluten in their diets could potentially benefit from this promising investigational treatment. AbbVie has significant experience within immunology and gastroenterology and the exclusive option to acquire this asset complements AbbVie’s broad mid-stage pipeline.”
“A collaboration between Alvine and AbbVie combines our respective strengths and expertise in the development of what could become the first therapeutic option for this major unmet medical need,” said Abhay Joshi, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer, Alvine. “We are pleased to have an industry leader in gastroenterology as a collaborator, whose considerable global development reach can be focused on getting this novel therapy to more patients.”
Under the terms of the agreement, AbbVie will make an initial upfront payment of $70 million for an exclusive option to either acquire the assets relating to ALV003, or the equity of the company. Alvine will maintain responsibility for Phase 2 clinical development, and upon successful completion of the approximately 500 patient Phase 2b study, AbbVie may exercise its option for the agreed upon additional consideration. Alvine will also be entitled to receive a milestone payment upon AbbVie’s initiation of Phase 3 development. In collaboration with AbbVie Biotech Ventures, Inc., a subsidiary of AbbVie dedicated to making early investments in emerging biotech and pharmaceutical companies, AbbVie was an early investor in Alvine Pharmaceuticals.
Pharmax Probiotic Formulas Approved for Post Antibiotic Care and IBS Relief
Pharmax, a trusted Seroyal brand and a North American leader in probiotics offering a comprehensive line of professional-grade, evidence-based nutraceuticals, is proud to announce that the Federal Canadian health department, Health Canada has approved two significant claims related to its proprietary Human Lactic Commensal (“HLC”) probiotics, HLC Intensive and HLC Replenish - “Significant reduction in the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (“IBS”)” and “Effective supplementation of normal intestinal microbiota following antibiotic therapy”.
“Considering that few products in the market target these specific conditions, we are pleased to receive Health Canada’s approval for the two claims related to the treatment of IBS and to post-antibiotic recovery. This is another example of our ongoing commitment to incorporate safe and effective formulas that reflect the latest evidence-based research. Under the direction of Dr. Nigel Plummer, Pharmax HLC strains were meticulously selected and diligently tested in double-blind, placebo controlled clinical trials,” said Yves Yau, President at Seroyal.
The double-blind, placebo controlled Sheffield IBS Trial tested four strains of high potency Human Lactic Commensal probiotics and concluded that Pharmax’s proprietary HLC blend indeed proved effective, decreasing the severity of IBS symptoms and number of days with pain, while improving satisfaction with bowel habits and overall quality of life. The trial was published in Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics.
The Cambridge Probiotic/Antibiotic Clinical Trial revealed that Pharmax’s proprietary HLC blend offers proven post-antibiotic replenishment and care by promoting a healthy microflora. The trial was published in the International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents.
“Pharmax’s human-derived probiotic strains more easily survive the rigours of the intestinal environment and are more efficient at colonizing the intestinal lining - ultimately yielding greater benefits” said Dr. Plummer.
For further information on Pharmax, the trials, HLC Intensive or HLC Replenish, please visit seroyal.com/brands/pharmax.
Emerson Ecologics Announces Four Award Recipients of the 2013 Emerson Grant Program
Emerson Ecologics, the leading distributor of the highest quality professional nutritional supplements to healthcare practitioners and their patients for over 30 years, today announced the award recipients of the 2013 Emerson Grant Program. As a company dedicated to the continued emergence of integrative healthcare and wellness, the Emerson Grant Program provides $25,000 of funding to non-profit organizations in the form of a one-time grant to support specific projects which will add value to the integrative medicine community, as well as make a lasting impact in the industry and on patient health.
The 2013 recipients of the Emerson Grant Program are:
- Massachusetts Society of Naturopathic Doctors: $10,000 grant awarded to support the goal of obtaining full licensure for naturopathic doctors within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the 2013-2014 legislative session. Currently only sixteen states, four of which are in New England, have licensing laws for naturopathic physicians.
- Naturopathic Education and Research Consortium: $10,000 grant awarded to help fund a new naturopathic residency at Full Circle Care in Salt Lake City, Utah. As the only state that requires all doctors to complete a one-year residency program before becoming fully licensed, the creation of this residency will help to expand naturopathic medicine in Utah.
- Naturopathic Physicians Research Institute: $4,000 grant awarded to fund the Kail Program. This program provides training and mentoring to prepare clinicians to conduct and publish high quality in-office clinical outcomes research which evaluates the efficacy of naturopathic medicine in the way it is practiced rather than looking at a specific, single therapeutic.
- Hawkwing: $1,000 grant awarded to support the Seeds of Hope project on the Cheyenne River Lakota/Sioux Indian Reservation in South Dakota, expanding naturopathic healthcare to this underserved population. This project teaches locals how to sprout their own safe and nutritious food in an area where there is widespread contamination of the land.
"We reviewed numerous applications from organizations that are all doing great work to advance the practice and accessibility of integrative medicine. Deciding which of these groups would receive a grant was a thoughtful and challenging decision," said Jaclyn Chasse, ND, Medical Director at Emerson Ecologics. "The chosen grant recipients share a dedication and passion to improve healthcare, as well as a viable plan to achieve their objectives. We are so excited to support each one of these worthy causes." For details or an application, visit emersonecologics.com/grant.
New Evidence on Role of Food in Gastrointestinal Disorders
The May 2013 issue of The American Journal of Gastroenterology presents new research and systematic reviews on the theme of food in gastrointestinal disorders that includes two new clinical guidelines from the American College of Gastroenterology, Diagnosis and Management of Celiac Disease by Dr. Joseph Murray and Dr. Alberto Rubio-Tapia and An Evidenced Based Approach to the Diagnosis and Management of Esophageal Eosinophilia and Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EoE) by Dr. Evan Dellon, Dr. David Katzka and colleagues. The issue features new research on the impact of food on celiac disease, fatty liver, constipation and colon polyps and presents an important new series of evidence-based reviews from the Rome Foundation Working Group on the role of food in functional gastrointestinal disorders, an area in which there is rapid expansion in clinicians understanding of food in GI function and sensation and how food relates to symptoms in patients with disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome.
According to the introduction to this series by William D. Chey, MD, FACG, AJG's Co-Editor, "Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) are the most common disorders presenting to gastroenterologists. Patients often identify foods as being associated with symptoms. This report from the Rome Foundation Working Group provides a framework by which to understand the various ways in which diet and FGIDs can interact. In particular, concepts of how the variety of extrinsic, intrinsic, and enteroendocrine pathways can intersect with nutrient-sensing receptors and impact gastrointestinal function and sensation are outlined, as well as the role of various food elements in FGIDs."
Low FODMAP Diets Relieve IBS Symptoms
Food is associated with symptom onset or exacerbation in a significant proportion of patients with irritable bowel syndrome, yet the role of food in the pathogenesis of functional GI disorders is poorly understood. A new review by Susan J. Shepherd, PhD looks at the evidence for a dietary intervention for functional GI symptoms that restricts short-chain carbohydrates known by the acronym "FODMAPs" (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols.)
According to Dr. Shepherd and colleagues, "In patients with irritable bowel syndrome, there is now an accumulating body of evidence, based on observational and comparative studies, and on randomized-controlled trials that supports the notion that FODMAPs trigger gastrointestinal symptoms in patients with functional bowel disorders, and that a diet low in FODMAPs offers considerable symptom relief in the majority of patients who use it."
Celiac Disease on the Rise and Improving Adherence to Gluten-Free Diets
The May 2013 AJG issue also includes an analysis which finds that the incidence of celiac disease has continued to increase in the past decade in the North American population. Additionally, researchers at the University of Sydney report on findings from a randomized, controlled trial of an online intervention in celiac disease which was effective in improving adherence to a gluten-free diet and represents a promising resource for individuals who are struggling to achieve or maintain adequate gluten-free diet adherence.
What Women Really Want
Metagenics Inc, a nutrigenomics and lifestyle medicine company focused on improving health, will host its second annual Lifestyle Medicine Summit in Chicago on October 4-6, 2013. The Summit will feature 17 distinguished experts who will discuss “What Women Really Want” related to their health and medical care.
“This year’s Lifestyle Medicine Summit will be an unparalleled conference featuring leading experts addressing the most critical and relevant issues related to women’s health,” said Willy Pardinas, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Americas for Metagenics. “Healthcare providers will have access to the latest scientific findings and personalized lifestyle medicine approaches for more successful patient outcomes.”
Speakers at the Summit include respected leaders in modern lifestyle medicine who will share their perspectives on issues critical to improving women’s health. These speakers include:
- Christiane Northrup, MD, visionary pioneer, New York Times bestselling author and prominent authority in the field of women’s health, will share her empowering approach to women’s health and wellness;
- Mark Hyman, MD, family physician, four-time New York Times bestselling author, and international leader in his field, will share information about autoimmune diseases in women;
- Mark Houston, MD, author of more than 200 articles and scientific abstracts in peer reviewed medical journals as well as textbook chapters, books, and films, will discuss critical information about women and heart disease; and
- Jeffrey Bland, PhD, President of the Personalized Lifestyle Medicine Institute (PLMI), and a leader in the nutritional medicine field for more than 25 years, will address personalized lifestyle medicine to best meet health and wellness needs for women.
When Fat Is Good: Brown Adipose Tissue (BAT) Shows Potential As Obesity Buster
A Boston-based physician/researcher today presented promising evidence that a specific type of body fat may help fight obesity in the future. His findings were highlighted at the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) 22nd Annual Scientific and Clinical Congress in Phoenix, AZ.
Dr. Aaron Cypess, of the Joslin Diabetes Center (JDC) and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), has been studying the structural and functional differences between brown adipose tissue (BAT) and white adipose tissue for several years and asserts that brown fat tissue holds promise as an obesity treatment if researchers are able to harness the substance’s ability to burn the extra stored lipids (fats) in white fat cells.
White fat -- which is actually yellow -- is widely distributed throughout the body and comes in handy as excess energy when the body needs it, but is stored in the body when more calories are consumed than can be used. Conversely, brown fat cells, found sparsely as deposits in the human neck and near the collarbone, are thought to counteract obesity by burning off excess lipids to help maintain the body’s core temperature. BAT is more plentiful in infants, making up about five percent of total body weight, but dissipates with age and until recently was thought to be physiologically unimportant.
The research of Cypess and his colleagues is focused on identifying activation triggers and developing strategies for increasing BAT energy expenditure and human BAT mass. Utilizing imaging tools such as PET-CT scans and MRIs, thus far Cypess, et. al. have advanced research on the subject, mapping changes to BAT metabolism in response to mild cold exposure and sympathomimetic drugs.
And, while he has been able to grow functional human BAT from precursor cells in the laboratory among other strides, Dr. Cypess is quick to point out that the promise BAT has an anti-obesity therapy is yet to be fully realized.
"In the short time since brown fat was found to be a functional tissue in adult humans, we have discovered more questions than answers,” Dr. Cypess noted. “We are still learning more about its true colors: where it is, what it can do and how to make more."
To read additional press releases about the AACE 22nd Annual Scientific and Clinical Congress in Phoenix, please visit media.aace.com or use the Twitter hashtag #AACE2013.
Groundbreaking New Documentary “NURSES If Florence Could See Us Now” in Celebration of National Nurses Week
On Nursing Excellence, a not-for-profit organization expanding the effectiveness, efficiency, well-being and recognition of the healthcare workforce, is pleased to announce the availability of its new feature-length documentary, “NURSES If Florence Could See Us Now,” providing a rare look into the complex and challenging world of nursing.
“It’s important that people recognize the power of nursing”
The film is being screened by hospitals and professional organizations across the US in celebration of National Nurses Week, May 6 - 12, 2013 as a way to highlight and show appreciation for the extraordinary work nurses do every day. In addition, the movie is premiering at select US locations, screening at the AACN’s National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition in Boston on May 22, and being shown at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The movie is now available for private purchase on DVD.
The idea for the film was developed by Kathy Douglas, RN, MHA, chief executive officer of On Nursing Excellence and chief nursing officer at API Healthcare. “During this time of healthcare transformation, one of our goals in producing this film is to provide leaders, policy makers and the public with a better understanding of nursing’s impact and value.”
“It’s important that people recognize the power of nursing,” said ANA president Karen A. Daley, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN. “This film helps people understand how nurses make a difference in people’s lives - that we bring both clinical expertise and leadership skills to every setting, from the bedside to the boardroom.”
Over 100 nurses across the US were interviewed for the film, providing a close-up look at the profession, and incorporating the many different roles nurses play and the lives they touch. There was no advanced scripting or prepping for the documentary. Film director Douglas simply interviewed nurses with a camera to capture authentic, candid conversations.
Following the Los Angeles premiere of the movie last October, Paula Dycus, DNP, RN, a Tennessee Nurses Association member, said, “This was the most incredible depiction of nursing that I’ve ever seen.”
Primarily a volunteer effort, numerous hospitals, industry associations, companies and individuals helped make the film possible through generous donations and sponsorships.
To see a trailer and learn more about the film visit nursesthemovie.com.
In conjunction with the release of the film, On Nursing Excellence in partnership with Igloo Software is launching a new online community where nurses can explore new ideas, collaborate and network.
New Therapy May Show Potential for Management of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
Entera Health, Inc. announces a poster recently presented at Experimental Biology 2013, which was held in Boston, MA, Saturday, April 20 – Wednesday April 24.
Dr. Gerald L. Klein presented nonclinical studies showing that SBI increases lean body mass and bone density through improved nutrient utilization and absorption efficiency. SBI facilitates restoration of the epithelial structure, reducing intestinal permeability, increasing absorption, improving intestinal barrier function as well as the modulation of the immune response by limiting immune activation. Clinical studies in patients with IBS-D or HIV-associated enteropathy have demonstrated improved GI symptoms. Dr. Klein concluded that SBI may be useful as a multifaceted approach for the dietary management of inflammatory GI diseases such as Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis, but emphasized the need for confirming clinical studies.
“We are very pleased with the progress we are making with the development of SBI,” remarked Dr. Eric Weaver, Chief Scientific Officer of Entera Health. “We look forward to bringing a new option to market which will allow clinicians to manage patients who experience abnormal intestinal function. In addition to the positive results we have seen in IBS-D and HIV-associated enteropathy, we believe that SBI may prove to be a valuable option in managing Inflammatory Bowel Disease if future clinical trials are confirmatory,” commented Gerald L. Klein, MD President & CEO of Entera Health, Inc.
SBI is a medical food product composed of bovine immunoglobulins and other proteins which have been shown to manage some forms of enteropathy (abnormal intestinal conditions/diseases) in clinical studies under medical supervision. (for more information, please email email@example.com).