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Past News Items - September 2016


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In the News

NIH Funds Research to See if Gut Microbiomes of Hispanics/Latinos Influence Their Diabetes Risk

New Study: Vitamin K2, Not K1, Shown Again to Impact Cardiovascular Health

Researchers from Yale School of Medicine, Section of Digestive Diseases; and Dept. of Pediatrics, take step in understanding the immunology of food intolerance

Time-Sensitive Regulatory Update from FDA: Implications for All Healthcare Practitioners

Feinstein Institute Scientists Identify Previously Undiscovered Role of Enzyme in Regulating Blood Pressure

Newly Invented Sugarwise Test Identifies Added Sugar in Food

5 Ways for Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety Encourages Clinicians to Take the Lead in Addressing this National Crisis

"Evidence-Based Medicine" in Crisis, According to the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS)

Functional Human Tissue-Engineered Liver Generated from Stem and Progenitor Cells at Children's Hospital Los Angeles

ACHS.edu Launches Nationwide, Fully Searchable Holistic Health Practitioner Directory

Children with Food Allergies Predisposed to Asthma, Rhinitis

Membership Medicine: Is It Right for Your Practice?

Three in Four Patients Describe Chiropractic Care as 'Very Effective'

Recommended Blood Pressure Targets for Diabetes Are Being Challenged




Released: 09/29/16


NIH Funds Research to See if Gut Microbiomes of Hispanics/Latinos Influence Their Diabetes Risk

Researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine have received a five-year, $3.9 million National Institutes of Health grant to investigate the role of the gut microbiome in the development of type 2 diabetes among Hispanics/Latinos, the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. population. Hispanics in the U.S. have a 66 percent higher rate of diabetes than non-Hispanic whites (11.8 percent versus 7.1 percent). Since therapies can alter the microbiome in the gut, the research could lead to strategies for preventing and treating diabetes. Einstein co-principal investigators on the grant are Robert C. Kaplan, PhD, and Robert D. Burk, MD, and Rob Knight, PhD, at University of California San Diego is also a co-principal investigator.

The human gut microbiome is composed of billions of bacteria and other microbes found in the intestines. It not only plays a major role in digestion, but recent studies show it can also increase risk for developing several different diseases including diabetes. The makeup of a person's gut microbiome—namely the number and types of different microbial species and their amounts—can be influenced by environmental factors including the foods we eat, the drugs we take, the air we breathe, and the people we live with.

"The human gut microbiome represents a promising target for dietary changes and treatments aimed at combating type 2 diabetes—particularly in groups like the Hispanic/Latino population that disproportionately develop the disease," said Dr. Kaplan, professor of epidemiology & population health and the Dorothy and William Manealoff Foundation and Molly Rosen Chair in Social Medicine at Einstein. "Our study will test the hypothesis that specific gut microbiome compositions are associated with pre-diabetes and diabetes."

The study is aimed at gathering information about the composition of gut microbiomes among Hispanics/Latinos and finding how their different makeups influence their risk for diabetes. To do so, he and his colleagues will study 2,000 participants enrolled in the Hispanic Community Health Study (HCHS)/Study of Latinos (SOL), the landmark research study of Hispanic/Latino health in the U.S., funded by the National Institutes of Health.

A major focus of the study will utilize a fasting two-hour glucose tolerance test to detect diabetes or pre-diabetes in the HCHS/SOL participants. The researchers will look for associations between the participants' diabetes status and their gut microbiome patterns, which will be assessed by determining the genetic composition of the total population of bacteria living within their feces.

Other aims of the study include:

·         For Hispanic/Latino individuals of diverse backgrounds and normal metabolism, identify environmental factors that may be affecting their gut microbiomes.

·         Look for associations between a person's gut microbiome pattern and characteristics, including geographical/ancestral background (e.g., Mexican, Puerto Rican), gender, age, and body mass index.

·         Actively follow all study participants to identify those individuals who develop diabetes and estimate the relative risk that disease will develop in people with particular gut microbiome patterns.

The grant is titled "Epidemiology of the Gut Microbiome, Prediabetes and Diabetes in Latinos" (1R01MD011389-01).

For more information about Albert Einstein College of Medicine, please visit www.einstein.yu.edu, read our blog, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and view us on YouTube.

 

SOURCE Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Released: 09/23/16


New Study: Vitamin K2, Not K1, Shown Again to Impact Cardiovascular Health

Clinical Nutrition has published a new long-term study1 that explores if there is a relationship between intake of phylloquinone and menaquinones (vitamins K1 and K2, respectively) and all-cause and cause-specific mortality. The results showed that high intake of menaquinones (vitamin K2) was associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease (CHD), at least in hypertensive participants, while high intake of phylloquinone (vitamin K1) was not associated with any reduced risks.

“As with the Rotterdam Study (2004) and Prospect-EPIC Study (2009), a link has been established between intake of long-chain menaquinones and cardiovascular health. Improving one’s K2 status results in less calcification of the arteries and soft tissues, leading to improved long-term health outcomes,” says Hogne Vik, chief medical officer with NattoPharma, world leader in vitamin K2 R&D and exclusive global supplier of MenaQ7® Vitamin K2 as MK-7. “These benefits are recognized with Vitamin K2, but not K1, which is important because there is a misconception that daily recommended intake (RDI) of the vitamin K1 is sufficient to protect the arteries for developing arterial diseases. This is not the case, since vitamin K1 is only documented and recognized to meet our needs for coagulation.

“It is, however, vitamin K2, the menaquinones, that are responsible for the cardiovascular benefits, and not vitamin K1,” adds Vik.

This prospective cohort study, entitled “Vitamin K intake and all-cause and cause-specific mortality”, included 33,289 participants from the EPIC-NL cohort, aged 20-70 years at baseline and recruited between 1993 and 1997. Dietary intake was assessed at baseline with a validated food frequency questionnaire and intakes of phylloquinone, and total, short-chain, and long-chain menaquinones were calculated. Information on vital status and causes of death was obtained through linkage to several registries. The association between the different forms of vitamin K intake and mortality was assessed with Cox proportional hazards, adjusted for risk factors for chronic diseases and nutrient intake.

During a mean follow-up of 16.8 years, 2,863 deaths occurred, including 625 from cardiovascular disease (CVD; 256 from CHD), 1,346 from cancer, and 892 from other causes. After multivariable adjustment, phylloquinone and menaquinones were not associated with all-cause mortality with hazard ratios for the upper vs. the lowest quartile of intake, and neither phylloquinone intake nor menaquinone intake was associated with risk of CVD mortality. However, the researchers concluded that higher intake of long-chain menaquinones was borderline significantly associated (Ptrend = 0.06) with lower CHD mortality with a HR10mg of 0.86 (0.74;1.00). None of the forms of vitamin K intake were associated with cancer mortality or mortality from other causes.

“Our three-year interventional study2 confirmed that adding vitamin K2 to one’s daily intake improves arterial health and flexibility,” Vik adds. “We are enthused to see additional studies confirming this mechanism and encourage the nutritional community to embrace Vitamin K2 for its unique and specific benefits.”

To view the new study in Clinical Nutrition, visit: http://www.clinicalnutritionjournal.com/article/S0261-5614(16)30216-3/abstract.

References

1 Zwakenberg SR, den Braver NR, Engelen AIP, Feskens, EJM, Vermeer C, Boer JMA, Verschuren WMM, van der Schouw YT, Beulens JWJ. Vitamin K intake and all-cause and cause specific mortality. Clinical Nutrition. 2016 Aug 30. Pii: S0261-5614(16)30216-3. 15-20. DOI: 10.1016/j.clnu.2016.08.017.

2 Knapen MH et al, Braam LAJL, Drummen NE, Bekers O, Hoeks APG, Vermeer C. Menaquinone-7 supplementation improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women: double-blind randomised clinical trial. Thrombosis and Haemostasis. 2015 113 5: 1135-1144. doi: 10.1160/TH14-08-0675. 

 

For more information on the health benefits of MenaQ7, visit menaq7.com.

For more information, visit nattopharma.com.

 

SOURCE NattoPharma

Released: 09/23/16


Researchers from Yale School of Medicine, Section of Digestive Diseases; and Dept. of Pediatrics, take step in understanding the immunology of food intolerance

Everyone knows the difference between food allergy and food intolerance. Allergy is mediated by a well understood pathway, involving IgE as the final trigger, and it produces immediate symptom onset. It can also be life threatening. Therefore, patients with suspected true food allergy should seek the care of a board certified allergist.

Food intolerance is something clearly different. The pathway, or pathways, is/are not yet defined, symptoms are delayed, and prevalence may be high. Symptoms are not as acute but may lead to long-term health issues. Dietary elimination and challenge is considered the “gold standard” for identification of offending foods.

Now, researchers from the Yale School of Medicine are attempting to uncover the immunological or at least physiological underpinnings of intolerance, to determine if there are specific biomarkers associated with intolerance to make their identification easier.

They are looking at clinical reactions to foods in patients with IBS to see if there are patterns. They are comparing reactions on the Alcat Test, an in vitro, lab based cellular assay, with other known and understood markers of inflammations, such as the up regulation of surface markers on immune cells. Research has only started but so far they have found a clear association between strong Alcat test reactions and up regulation on CD 11b molecules on the surface of CD3 and CD8 positive T lymphocytes.

It’s too soon to draw conclusions but the findings show promise of finding such a biomarker. They intend to keep looking to see if severe reactions on the Alcat Test are associated with neutrophil degranulation and/or activation of the inflammasome, as well as conducting randomized controlled trials to determine if personalized dieting based on the Alcat test results in improved clinical outcomes amongst patients with IBS.

Drs. Ayaz Ghani, Wajahat Mehal, and Ather Ali, reported their early findings last week at The International Research Congress on Integrative Medicine.

About Cell Science Systems

Cell Science Systems (www.alcat.com) is a specialty clinical laboratory that develops and performs laboratory testing in immunology, cell biology, molecular diagnostics, and other specialties supporting the personalized treatment and prevention of chronic disease. Cell Science Systems, Corp. operates a CLIA certified laboratory and is an FDA inspected registered, cGMP medical device manufacturer meeting ISO EN13485 standards. Cell Science Systems is best known for pioneering the Alcat Test for food and chemical sensitivities. The company operates subsidiaries in Europe and Asia.

Released: 09/15/16


Time-Sensitive Regulatory Update from FDA: Implications for All Healthcare Practitioners

The “revised draft, non-binding guidance for New Dietary Ingredients (NDIs)” may result in the removal of many dietary supplements from the market and, for those that remain, increase prices paid by patients. If this guidance is adopted, we will most certainly lose access to important nutritional ingredients and products we have used safely and successfully for > 20 years.  This draft guidance is yet another example of the regulatory friction caused by the unstoppable convergence of food and medicine.

 

FDA seeks comments by October 11, 2016; it’s important to make our voices heard.

 

Background: In response to the proposed draft NDI Guidance first published five years ago, the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) opined:

 

In this latest revised guidance, little has changed in five years. The current industry estimates for the direct compliance costs range from $2 to $6 billion. The costs appear to far outweigh any improvements to consumer safety.  Key issues include:

 

1) As noted by CRN, most “ingredients” will be “new dietary ingredients” under this new draft guidance.  NDIs require 75 day premarket notification. Every supplement company using a NDI must submit notice on the ingredient and the products in which it appears. If a product contains more than one NDI, a new NDI notification (with safety data) must be submitted for every product containing the NDIs. What this basically amounts to is a 75 day premarket notification program for every dietary supplement that contains one or more NDIs. 

 

2) For time tested dietary ingredients, a manufacturing change triggers NDI status. This essentially will put most botanical extracts into NDI territory. FDA used the example of supercritical CO2 extraction as a process change that would trigger NDI status, requiring NDI notification with safety data as well, from every company that markets finished dosage forms of such ingredients. The cost of redundancy is mind-boggling. Improvements in process to remove contaminants, such as distillation, appear to trigger NDI status, thus adding even more inappropriate expense and compliance burdens to companies and FDA.

 

3) FDA has maintained their position that synthetic phytonutrients (which they imperfectly describe as “synthetic botanicals”) are NOT dietary ingredients. While synthetic vitamins and minerals are lawful dietary ingredients, synthetic phytonutrients are not. In one letter to FDA, this disconnect was described as “irrational” and indeed, even though it is irrational, FDA has “doubled down”. Hmm.  Moreover, it is OK to combine a synthetic vitamin and a mineral in conventional food without having to demonstrate safety; however, it appears that combining those in a capsule will trigger a NDI requiring safety data.

 

4) Submitting a NDI notification to FDA without getting comment does NOT always mean that FDA is OK with the ingredient/product. As far back as 1997, FDA processed a NDI for vinpocetine. In the 9/7/17 Federal Register, FDA has tentatively concluded that vinpocetine is not a dietary ingredient and is now seeking comments. What might be next? Was this action driven by Senator McCaskill who called on FDA and retailers to stop selling this ingredient in 2015?

 

All healthcare practitioners should carefully review this guidance and consider how it may impact their ability to prescribe safe nutritional interventions to help their patients.

 

Warning: This highly technical regulatory guidance document is very complex. We encourage all practitioner-stakeholders to request a 120 day extension on the comment period (now due on 10/11/16) to allow for careful review. A sample petition you may use can be found <<here >>and submitted electronically until 10/10/16. Please read the guidance, and consider what impact it might have on your formulary, nutritional practice and your patients’ health.

 

We all applaud the original intent of the NDI strategy to prevent ingredients from entering the market without having a reasonable expectation of safety. That’s just common sense. However, this regulatory over-reach has transformed that simple goal into a very costly pre-market approval for most dietary supplements while bringing into question the future availability of many safe and effective ingredients we use every day.

 

Please file for an extension today. FDA needs to hear from us. We owe that to our patients.

 

Released: 09/13/16


Feinstein Institute Scientists Identify Previously Undiscovered Role of Enzyme in Regulating Blood Pressure

In a study published recently in the prestigious journal Nature Biotechnology, scientists from The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research and Karolinska Institutet discovered that T-cells capable of producing the neurotransmitter acetylcholine can regulate blood pressure. These T-cells are white blood cells, part of the immune system, which contain an enzyme choline acetyltransferase (ChAT).  It is this ChAT enzyme that is responsible for the production of acetylcholine. Having now identified ChAT cells' new role and previously knowing that they respond to vagus nerve stimulation, Feinstein Institute researchers will explore using bioelectronic medicine to treat blood pressure and hypertension—a condition that affects more than 70 million Americans. Bioelectronic medicine is a new field of research that uses technology to treat disease and injury.

"Previous studies conducted at the Feinstein Institute found that the immune function could be controlled by neural mechanisms through the spleen, and with this study we were looking to identify triggers that could reach deeper into the smaller arteries to aid with conditions such as high blood pressure," said Kevin J. Tracey, MD, president and chief executive officer of the Feinstein Institute and one of lead authors of the Nature Biotechnology paper. "We found what we were looking for, and will develop this finding into new research that we hope will pave the way to new therapies that will improve the lives of millions."

Scientists from the Feinstein Institute, Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden, University Health Network in Toronto, and York University in Toronto collaborated in making the discovery published in the Nature Biotechnology paper. Researchers at the Feinstein Institute, who are leaders in the field of bioelectronic medicine, have partnered with the Karolinska Institutet for the past 10 years. The Karolinska Institutet is one of the most-prestigious medical universities in the world and is the home of the Nobel Prize. Peder S. Olofsson, MD, PhD, worked at the Feinstein Institute between 2009 and 2015 and has since returned to the Karolinska Institute as founding director of its Center for Bioelectronic Medicine. The Feinstein Institute and Karolinska Institutet collaborate to help propel the field of bioelectronic medicine.

"Interdisciplinary collaborations in bioelectronic medicine offer an opportunity to improve understanding of little understood physiological mechanisms. This study, which focused on blood pressure regulation, represents one such advance," said Dr. Olofsson, corresponding author of the Nature Biotechnology paper.

The study was supported with grants from the National Institute of Health and the National Institute of General Medicine.

More Details about the Study:

A previous Feinstein Institute paper published in Science (Science 334, 98–101; 2011) describes that T-cells in the spleen express choline acetyltransferase (ChAT), which can affect immune function under the control of the vagus nerve. The research described in the recent Nature Biotechnology paper aimed to further examine these T-cells that synthesize via ChAT vasorelaxant acetylcholine, which affects blood pressure. When observing mice in this study, researchers observed that those without ChAT in their T-cells exhibited high blood pressure. This led to the conclusion that the source of acetylcholine that affects arterial pressure are these T-cells. 

For more information, visit FeinsteinInstitute.org.

 

SOURCE Northwell Health

Released: 09/12/16


Newly Invented Sugarwise Test Identifies Added Sugar in Food

A new test, enabling scientists to identify added sugars in foods for the first time, launches in Palo Alto. The Sugarwise certification program uses this test to award a kitemark to those products low in added sugar helping people quickly identify them. It has been hailed as one of the most important breakthroughs in our fight against the negative health effects associated with high sugar intake.

The groundbreaking technology developed by Sugarwise to measure added sugar in foods is to begin use in the US. Following on from the new FDA guidelines on food labelling, the technology is the only way of independently measuring added sugar without requiring recipe information from manufacturers. Chief Scientist, Vinicius Ferreira, from Caltech developed the method working with Cambridge University Scientists.

<<Video: http://origin-qps.onstreammedia.com/origin/multivu_archive/PRNA/ENR/Sugarwise.mp4>>

Sugarwise, which was the first UK company to move its headquarters to the US following the Brexit vote has been warmly received by American health campaigners. Today major campaigners will announce their intentions to collaborate at this event in Palo Alto. On Friday 9th September the new system became available throughout the US.

Vinicius Ferreira, Caltech Scientist said: "An overwhelming majority of the American population exceeds their added sugar target on a daily basis. Obesity is soaring and sugar related illness is rising. We have developed the test and certification to help people take control of their sugar intake. If Sugarwise encourages the food industry to address added sugar content the knock on effect could be huge."

Rend Platings, Sugarwise Founder, said: "I was shocked to hear my daughter's generation may live a shorter life than their parents. It's not that we don't know about the dangers of sugar, we do; the problem relates to our lack of access to healthier choices."

New Sugarwise Certification Offers the Only Way for Consumers to Identify Low Added Sugar Content in Food

Sugarwise is the world's first certification for sugar claims in food and drink. The Sugarwise test is the only independent method for assessing added sugars. Manufacturer supplied recipe information is not required. The independent assessment has the potential to enforce new sugar labelling regulations as well as reformulation targets on added sugar throughout the world, ensuring fairness. The kitemark highlights options low in added sugars.

 

SOURCE Sugarwise

Released: 09/12/16


5 Ways for Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety Encourages Clinicians to Take the Lead in Addressing this National Crisis

The Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety (PPAHS) encourages clinicians to take the lead in addressing the opioid epidemic.

"Prince was not the first, nor unfortunately the last, person to die due to an opioid-related event," said Michael Wong, JD (Executive Director, PPAHS). "According to the medical examiner, Prince died from a self-administered fentanyl overdose. While Prince may have become the poster child for the opioid epidemic and a call for restrictions on the use of opioids, it must not be forgotten that opioids play a vital role in the management of pain, such as during surgery or to relieve chronic pain."

Citing recently available resources from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Mr. Wong cited five ways clinicians can take the lead in addressing the opioid epidemic:

1.      Ensure Prescribing an Opioid is Appropriate

2.      Consider the Use of Non-Opioid Treatment

3.      Recognize that Each Patient Reacts Differently to Opioid Dosages

4.      Reduce the Long-Term Use of Opioids

5.      Ensure the Highest Risk Patients are Monitored

To read further about these five resources, please go to the PPAHS blog at http://www.ppahs.org/blog/

For other resources on the prescribing of opioids by the CDC, please visit CDC's resource page.

 

SOURCE Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety (PPAHS)

Released: 09/12/16


"Evidence-Based Medicine" in Crisis, According to the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS)

The patient-physician relationship is largely being replaced by expert protocols and "best practices," writes Hermann W. Børg, MD, in the fall issue of the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons. Although these may be called "guidelines," the physician may be required to justify any "deviation." The guidelines are created with and justified by "evidence-based medicine" (EBM), Dr. Børg explains.

EBM is a response to challenges in 21st century medicine, including information overload, calls for cost containment, and the change from a cottage industry to a managed industrial complex, Dr. Børg states. Also, respect for physicians has been replaced by distrust and unlimited demands.

EBM must first define what constitutes evidence. There is a graded hierarchy, with costly controlled trials at the top and physicians' observations at the bottom. Yet Dr. Børg notes that observations made at close range, often dismissed as "anecdotes," can be invaluable. Moreover, the paucity or absence of "anecdotes" that are consistent with the accepted theory may prompt a reexamination of the theory. Often theories are developed from trials in a limited population sample, based on over-simplification of complex biologic phenomena.

Numerous problems with EBM are emerging and being discussed in major medical journals. These include:

  • Distortion of the EBM approach by vested interests (pharmaceutical industry, payers and administrators);
  • Focusing on marginal changes in risk factors rather than actual disease states;
  • Over-emphasis on following algorithmic rules instead of sound clinical judgment;
  • Trying to impose a poorly fitting theory on patients with multiple problems; and
  • Disregard for genetic differences between patients.

"Strict application of EBM implies a mechanistic algorithm-driven approach, similar to primitive pre-artificial-intelligence computer programs of the past. In such an approach, the doctor sees the patient as a statistic rather than an individual. This sort of medicine could be practiced by administrators," Dr. Børg writes.

However, EBM flaws are becoming so obvious that "even its past ardent promoters are willing to admit that this movement is in crisis," Dr. Børg states.

"Ironically, advances in scientific knowledge are showing the importance of the focus on the individual," he concludes.

The Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons is published by the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS), a national organization representing physicians in all specialties since 1943.

 

SOURCE Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS)

Released: 09/06/16


Functional Human Tissue-Engineered Liver Generated from Stem and Progenitor Cells at Children's Hospital Los Angeles

A research team led by investigators at The Saban Research Institute of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles has generated functional human and mouse tissue-engineered liver from adult stem and progenitor cells. Tissue-engineered Liver (TELi) was found to contain normal structural components such as hepatocytes, bile ducts, and blood vessels. The study has been published online in Stem Cells Translational Medicine.

Liver disease affects pediatric and adult patients, impacting one in ten people in the United States. Liver transplantation is the only effective treatment for end-stage liver disease, but scarcity of available organs and the need for lifelong immunosuppressive medication make this treatment challenging.

Alternate approaches that have been investigated include significant limitations. For example, conventional liver cell transplantation requires scarce donor liver and a perfusion protocol that wastes many cells. This type of cell transplant typically lasts less than one year, with most patients ultimately requiring a liver transplant. Human-induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells are another possibility but, so far, iPS cells have remained immature rather than developing into functional and proliferative liver cells, called hepatocytes. There continues to be a need for a durable treatment, particularly one that could eliminate the need for immunosuppression.

“Based on the success in my lab generating tissue-engineered intestine and other cell types, we hypothesized that by modifying the protocol used to generate intestine, we would be able to develop liver organoid units that could generate functional tissue-engineered liver when transplanted,” said Tracy C. Grikscheit, MD, a pediatric surgeon and researcher at The Saban Research Institute of CHLA and co-principal investigator on the study. Grikscheit is also a tenured associate professor of Surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of USC.

The research team generated liver organoid units (LOU) from human and mouse liver and implanted both varieties of LOU into murine models. Tissue-engineered liver developed from the human and mouse LOU, with key cell types required for hepatic function including patent bile ducts and blood vessels, hepatocytes, stellate cells, and endothelial cells. However, the cellular organization differed from native liver tissue.

Human albumin, the main type of protein in the blood, was detected in the host mouse serum, indicating in vivo secretory function from the human-derived tissue-engineered liver. In a mouse model of liver failure, tissue-engineered liver was able to provide some hepatic function. In addition, the hepatocytes proliferated in the tissue-engineered liver.

“A cellular therapy for liver disease would be a game-changer for many patients, particularly children with metabolic disorders,” said Kasper S. Wang, MD, a pediatric surgeon and researcher at The Saban Research Institute of CHLA and co-principal investigator on the study. “By demonstrating the ability to generate hepatocytes comparable to those in native liver, and to show that these cells are functional and proliferative, we’ve moved one step closer to that goal.” Wang is also associate professor of Surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of USC and a principal investigator for the national consortium, the Childhood Liver Disease Research and Educational Network.

Additional contributors to the study include Nirmala Mavila, Andrew Trecartin, Ryan Spurrier, Yi Xiao, Xiaogang Hou, David James, Xiaowei Fu, and Clara Wang of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, and Brian Truong and Gerald S. Lipshutz of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Funding was provided in part by the National Institutes of Health (1R01NS071076-05A1), California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (TR4-06831), and the European Union (668294).

About Children’s Hospital Los Angeles

Children's Hospital Los Angeles has been named the best children’s hospital in California and among the top 10 in the nation for clinical excellence with its selection to the prestigious U.S. News & World Report Honor Roll. Children’s Hospital is home to The Saban Research Institute, one of the largest and most productive pediatric research facilities in the United States. Children’s Hospital is also one of America's premier teaching hospitals through its affiliation since 1932 with the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California. For more information, visit CHLA.org. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn, or visit our blog at http://researchlablog.org/.

Released: 09/06/16


ACHS.edu Launches Nationwide, Fully Searchable Holistic Health Practitioner Directory

American College of Healthcare Sciences (ACHS) has launched a new, nationwide holistic health alumni practitioner directory. The directory enables anyone with Internet access to quickly and easily find a trained, local holistic health practitioner (http://directory.achs.edu/). Practitioners specialize in aromatherapy, herbal medicine, holistic nutrition, and wellness coaching, among other modalities.

The ACHS.edu Alumni Practitioner Directory is one of the College’s many alumni services. The directory supports alumni efforts to gain visibility in a growing market and further increases the professionalism of the holistic health field. The directory also serves the needs of a growing number of Americans looking for well-trained practitioners specializing in wellness prevention and safe, affordable solutions for common health challenges.

A 2016 analysis by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report a substantial increase in the amount Americans are spending out-of-pocket for complementary health approaches. Based on data retrieved from a supplement to the 2012 National Health Survey, stats show “Americans spent $14.7 billion out-of-pocket on visits to complementary practitioners such as chiropractors, acupuncturists or massage therapists” and an additional “$12.8 billion out-of-pocket on natural product supplements.”[1]

“Our graduates have earned a vast amount of knowledge and experience through their education and rigorous curriculum at ACHS,” says Dorene Petersen, ACHS president and founder. “We are more than proud to highlight their expertise and businesses through the user-friendly Alumni Practitioner Directory, and help people find the holistic health services and practitioners they need for wellness.”

ACHS has a 38-year tradition of innovation in holistic health and complementary alternative medicine education. Accredited undergraduate- and graduate-level certificate, diploma, and degree programs emphasize experiential learning and prepare graduates to become collaborative leaders in clinical and non-clinical settings.

ACHS.edu Practitioner Directory participants are verified ACHS alumni. Practitioner Directory listings include complete practitioner biographical information, including photo, practice and business information, company logos, etc.

“This one-stop search tool makes it easy for potential clients to locate qualified practitioners and request information about services,” says Stephanie Torres, ACHS’s Alumni and Community Programs Manager. “It’s very exciting to see our professional graduates connecting with the public and truly making a difference through holistic health.”

To search the ACHS.edu Practitioner Directory by category or location, go to: http://directory.achs.edu/

For more information about this press release or ACHS.edu alumni services, please email publicrelations@achs.edu or call 800.487.8839. To learn more about ACHS’s accredited online holistic health programs, visit www.achs.edu.

[1] National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. (2016, June 22). Americans Spent $30.2 Billion Out-Of-Pocket On Complementary Health Approaches. National Institutes of Health. [Online] Retrieved from https://nccih.nih.gov/news/press/cost-spending-06222016 

Released: 09/01/16


Children with Food Allergies Predisposed to Asthma, Rhinitis

Children with a history of food allergy have a high risk of developing asthma and allergic rhinitis during childhood as well. The risk increases with the number of food allergies a child might have, say researchers from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) in a new study recently published in BMC Pediatrics.

"Eczema, asthma, and allergic rhinitis are among the most common childhood medical conditions in the U.S.," said lead researcher David A. Hill, MD, PhD, an allergy and immunology fellow with an interest in food allergy. "Disease rates for these conditions seem to be changing, prompting a need for more information and surveillance." Compared with previous reports, this study found higher rates of asthma and lower rates of eczema, a skin inflammation.

In Philadelphia, asthma rates are among the highest in the nation, affecting one in five children. In this study, the researchers found an asthma prevalence rate of 21.8 percent.

The study is a retrospective analysis of the electronic health records of more than one million urban and suburban children in the CHOP Care Network from 2001 to 2015. The researchers divided the records into two cohorts: a closed-birth cohort of 29,662 children, followed continuously for their first five years of life, and a cross-sectional cohort of 333,200 children and adolescents, followed for at least 12 months. The patients were 48 percent white and 40 percent black.

While prior studies have suggested patients with food allergies are at increased risk of developing asthma, those analyses were small and limited. This study is the largest to date to examine the characteristics of healthcare provider-diagnosed eczema, asthma, allergic rhinitis, and food allergy in a pediatric primary care population.

In the closed-birth cohort, the incidence of at least one food allergy between birth and age five was 8 percent, with the peak age of diagnosis between 12 and 17 months of age. The overall prevalence of at least one food allergy for the large cross-sectional cohort was 6.7 percent, in line with previously published rates. However, allergies to specific foods diverged from previous patterns. Allergies to peanut, milk, shellfish, and soy were proportionately higher in the study population, while wheat allergy was proportionately rarer, and sesame allergy was higher than previously appreciated.

The researchers said that further studies should examine whether the food allergy patterns they found are comparable to those found in other geographical areas.

Overall, children with existing food allergy were at increased risk of developing asthma and allergic rhinitis. "For patients with an established diagnosis of food allergy, 35 percent went on to develop asthma; and patients with multiple food allergies were at increased risk of developing asthma as compared to those with a single food allergy," said senior author Jonathan Spergel, MD, PhD, chief of the division of Allergy and Immunology and the holder of the Stuart Starr Chair of Pediatrics at CHOP. "Similarly, 35 percent of patients with food allergy went on to develop allergic rhinitis." These asthma and allergic rhinitis rates in children with food allergy were roughly double the rates found in the general population.

"Of the major food allergens, allergy to peanut, milk, and egg significantly predisposed children to asthma and allergic rhinitis," added Hill.

"Using provider-based diagnosis data provided important information often lacking in existing studies," added Spergel. "We found different disease rates than previously reported, and our research provides key data to shape future efforts aimed at prevention, diagnosis, and management of these common pediatric conditions."

The American Academy of Pediatrics Resident Research Award, CHOP's Food Allergy Research Fund, and Fare Education and Research, Inc. supported this research.

David A. Hill et al, "The epidemiologic characteristics of healthcare provider-diagnosed eczema, asthma, allergic rhinitis, and food allergy in children: a retrospective cohort," BMC Pediatrics, published online Aug. 20, 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.11.1186/s12887-016-0673-z

For more information, visit http://www.chop.edu

 

SOURCE The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Released: 09/01/16


Membership Medicine: Is It Right for Your Practice?

For an increasing number of physicians frustrated by today's healthcare environment, concierge, or membership, medicine has proven to be a practical yet transformative solution, providing a way to remain independent and sustain a thriving practice long term. Physicians are invited to explore if membership medicine is a good fit for their practice at a complimentary webinar on Thursday, September 8 at Noon CT, led by Specialdocs Consultants CEO Terry Bauer and Chief Medical Advisor and retired concierge physician Dr. Pat Tokarz.

To register, go to https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8422752026220276484 or visit https://specialdocs.com/concierge-medicine-webinar-registration/.

"I have spent years watching the healthcare industry evolve, working with physicians and seeing their struggles with diminishing reimbursement and increasing demands on managing a practice," says Bauer. "Concierge medicine offers hope. It ultimately improves both the physician and patient experience, enhances outcomes, and reduces the overall cost of care."

The model has grown exponentially from its inception in the 1990s with two physicians to more than 10,000 concierge medicine practices today, according to Concierge Medicine Today.

"A concierge practice is about more time...for patients, for yourself, for your family," says Dr. Tokarz, who opened his concierge medicine practice in Northern Virginia community more than a decade ago. "There is an abundance of evidence that shows this patient-centered approach provides a host of tangible benefits, from reducing healthcare costs to a real focus on wellness and preventative medicine. It may well be one of the major ways primary care can survive in this country."

During the online session, participants will learn:

  • The different types of membership medicine models
  • Key factors to consider before transitioning
  • Essentials of a successful transition
  • Challenges and opportunities in membership medicine
  • Dr. Tokarz's personal story of change to a concierge practice

About the Speakers

With more than three decades of healthcare leadership experience, Terry Bauer has a reputation for bringing about positive change as a strategist, builder, and driver of successful companies. As CEO of Specialdocs Consultants, LLC, he is dedicated to transforming physicians' personal and professional lives and as a result, the health of their patients, through conversion to the concierge medicine model. J. Patrick Tokarz, MD, is Board certified in Family Medicine. After more than 30 years at Northern Virginia Family Practice, Dr. Tokarz retired from practicing medicine in December 2014. He has received numerous awards during his career, including Best Doctor in America (2005-2010) and Top Doctor recognition.

Founded in 2002, Specialdocs Consultants, LLC is a pioneer in transitioning traditional medical practices nationwide to independent, custom-designed concierge models. Our unique approach ensures that physicians retain autonomy, with their own names at the forefront of the practice. Specialdocs remains the leader in transitioning more physicians to this independent model than any other company. We provide all the essentials for a successful concierge medicine practice and support our physicians throughout the transition process and beyond. // www.specialdocs.com

 

SOURCE Specialdocs Consultants

Released: 09/01/16


Three in Four Patients Describe Chiropractic Care as 'Very Effective'

Low-back pain is the single leading cause of physical disability worldwide, according to the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013.

A Gallup-Palmer College of Chiropractic study released today about Americans’ perceptions of chiropractic found that nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults (65 percent) report having had neck or back pain significant enough that they saw a health-care professional at some point in their lives, demonstrating a significant need for back-pain treatment in the U.S. The “Gallup-Palmer College of Chiropractic Annual Report: Americans’ Perceptions of Chiropractic,” comes from the second annual Gallup-Palmer survey of American attitudes about chiropractic care.

“Many Americans reported dealing with significant neck or back pain,” said Cynthia English, Gallup research consultant in charge of the study. “Among U.S. adults wh

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