Rheumatoid Arthritis Gut


Got guts…next?

Searching for Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Gut

A pair of recent studies look in an interesting place to find commonality among rheumatoid arthritis sufferers:

Their guts.

Ryan Black writing for MD reported on a study published in Genome Medicine from the Mayo clinic. Veena Taneja, Ph D of the Mayo Clinic’s Center for Immunized Medicine said they sought to find a biomarker in the form of gut microbiota. Examining fecal samples of (human) RA patients and their first-degree relatives, the researchers noticed that an abundance of collinsella in the gut was linked to increased RA symptoms.

To test this, they administered collinsella to “humanized” mice, and found that “Mice given [Collinsella aerofaciens] developed arthritis with increased incidence and severity compared with non-treated mice (100 % incidence in treated vs 62.5 % in untreated, P = 0.068).” Their findings indicate that collinsella may be a predictive biomarker for RA in humans.

Comment: Maybe I’ll stay away from pepperoni pizza…


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Etanercept Alzheimers


Hope for Alzheimer’s… maybe

Arthritis drug could reduce risk of having Alzheimer’s disease

Nicholas Bakalar writing for Business Standard reported a drug used to treat rheumatoid arthritis may have benefits against Alzheimer’s disease, researchers report.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease believed to be driven in part by tumour necrosis factor, or TNF, a protein that promotes inflammation. Drugs that block TNF, including an injectable drug called etanercept, have been used to treat rheumatoid arthritis for many years.

TNF is also elevated in the cerebrospinal fluid of Alzheimer’s patients.

Researchers identified 41,109 men and women with a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis and 325 with both rheumatoid arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease. In people over 65, the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease was more than twice as high in people with rheumatoid arthritis, as in those without it. The study is in CNS Drugs.

But unlike patients treated with five other rheumatoid arthritis drugs, those who had been treated with etanercept showed a significantly reduced risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

Comment: Interesting to see what future developments occur.


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Road Rage


So you’re a careful and courteous driver right.  Well you’re in the minority… next

Nearly 8 Out Of 10 US drivers have engaged in aggressive or angry driving in past year, survey finds

Joan Lowy writing for the Associated Press reported  almost 80 percent of US drivers “admit expressing anger, aggression or road rage at least once in the previous year, according to a survey” from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. The survey found that male drivers were more likely to engage in road rage than female drivers, especially younger men between the ages of 19 and 39.

Comment: I’ve seen it often.  Pretty sad.


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Stem Cells for Stroke


Stem cells… a breakthrough… I mean a huge one next.

Researchers use stem cells to restore motor function in stroke patients

Ariana Cha writing in the Washington Post reported that scientists “studying the effect of stem cells injected directly into the brains of stroke patients said…that they were ‘stunned’ by the extent to which the experimental treatment restored motor function in some of the patients.” Although the study “involved only 18 patients and was designed primarily to look at the safety of such a procedure and not its effectiveness, it is creating significant buzz in the neuroscience community because the results appear to contradict a core belief about brain damage – that it is permanent and irreversible.” The findings were published in Stroke.

Comment: Wow.  Double wow.


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Spironlactone for Knee Effusion


An old drug with a new use… next

Low-dose spironolactone seen as safe, effective treatment for patients with OA-related knee effusion

Reported in Healio… “Low dose spironolactone is a safe, effective and noninvasive treatment for osteoarthritis-related effusion. It is effective in mild and moderate cases and, to a lesser extent, in severe cases,” Sarah Ohrndorf, MD, specialist in internal medicine/rheumatology in the Department of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology at Charité University Hospital in Berlin.

Researchers categorized 200 patients with unilateral knee effusion related to osteoarthritis (OA) into four groups with 50 patients in group 1 receiving spironolactone for 2 weeks, 50 patients in group 2 receiving ibuprofen for 2 weeks, 50 patients in group 3 using cold compresses twice daily for 2 weeks and 50 patients in group 4 receiving placebo for 2 weeks.  Group 1 outperformed all other groups.

Comment: Who would have thunk it?


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Nanoparticles Rheumatoid Arthritis


A novel method for detection and treatment in rheumatoid arthritis… next

Rheumatoid Arthritis Effectively Diagnosed And Treated With Biodegradable Nanoparticles In Early Study

Dr. Patricia Inacio writing in Rheumatoid Arthritis News reported biodegradable polymer nanoparticles (BNPs), tiny particles made of a biodegradable polymer, appear to be quite useful for the early detection and for long-term, effective treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) with minimal side effects, according to a study presented at the recent . These particles, once coated with a molecule that specifically targets inflamed joint tissues, ensure a high degree of efficacy in delivering both diagnostic probes and drugs to arthritic joints.

Dr. Paolo Macor, the study’s lead investigator from the Department of Life Sciences, University of Trieste, Italy said “There is a need to develop a new tool to enable early diagnosis, and also to develop tissue-specific agents able to reduce systemic side effects. This would increase the potency of drugs with lower doses, and also potentially reduce the cost of treatment,” Dr. Macor said.

Comment: Exciting and I look forward to hearting more.


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Vagus Nerve Stimulation Helps Rheumatoid Arthritis


Here’s an interesting twist on rheumatoid arthritis treatment… next

Nerve Stimulation ‘Eases Symptoms’ Of Chronic Condition Rheumatoid Arthritis

Olivia Lerche writing in the Express reported scientists believe stimulating the vagus nerve, which controls electrical signals to the stomach, heart and lungs, can significantly reduce pain and swelling caused by chronic joint inflammation.

The nerve can be stimulated with an electrical device surgically implanted into the body to send pulses through the vagus at various intervals.

Clinical trial data published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) revealed stimulating the vagus nerve with a bioelectronic device significantly improved the level of disease in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

Comment: Wow. This is unreal … I really am excited about this one.


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TV Watching Stunts Bone Growth


A common activity that may stunt your growth… next

TV Watching Stunts Bone Growth, Study Finds

Megan Daily writing in MD reported long periods of television watching could have the same negative effects on kids’ bone growth as total bed rest, an Australian study found.

Australian research presented in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research shows decreased bone mass in young adults who spent more of their childhood hours in front of a television set.

Of more than1,000 young men and women scanned at age 20 those who had watched 14 or more hours of TV each week as children and adolescents had less bone mineral content than their peers.

Comment: Wow… that’s pretty alarming.

 


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Fecal Transplants Effective Against C Difficile


Is there an effective treatment for c diff.?  Found out next.

Fecal Transplants Effective Against C. Difficile Infections, Study Finds

Carl Zimmer writing in the New York Times  reported that fecal transplants appear to be “remarkably effective” against “potentially fatal infections of bacteria known as Clostridium difficile.” In a study, investigators “isolated the spores of about 50 different species of bacteria found in stool samples donated by healthy people.” Next, researchers put “the spores” into capsules, “which they gave to 30 patients with C. difficile infections.” Notably, 29 of those 30 patients recovered. While no one knows for sure how fecal transplants work, experts theorize that bacteria from a healthy donor’s GI tract may “be able to gobble up nutrients that compete with invaders like C. difficile which are needed to survive.” The findings were published July 15 in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

Comment: C diff is an awful disease to have and is responsible for many deaths, particularly among older individuals.  This is welcome news.


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Fecal Transplants Effective Against C. Difficile Infections


Is there an effective treatment for c diff.? Found out next.

Fecal Transplants Effective Against C. Difficile Infections

Study finds Carl Zimmer writing in the New York Times reported that fecal transplants appear to be “remarkably effective” against “potentially fatal infections of bacteria known as Clostridium difficile.” In a study, investigators “isolated the spores of about 50 different species of bacteria found in stool samples donated by healthy people.” Next, researchers put “the spores” into capsules, “which they gave to 30 patients with C. difficile infections.” Notably, 29 of those 30 patients recovered. While no one knows for sure how fecal transplants work, experts theorize that bacteria from a healthy donor’s GI tract may “be able to gobble up nutrients that competing invaders like C. difficile need to survive.” The findings were published July 15 in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

Comment: C diff is an awful disease to have and is responsible for many deaths, particularly among older individuals. This is welcome news.

 


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