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The following is a review of diagnostics related medical research worldwide

The information is updated the first week of every month - so ... make this a regular stop in your information gathering activities.

The following information has been compiled from publicly available Sources, StratCom does not assume any responsibility for the accuracy or the authenticity of the information and StratCom cannot be held liable for errors.

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Research News for October 2000

Three deaths in California over the past 15 months have been linked to a New World arenavirus that is not previously known to cause disease in humans. The California Department of Health Services and the University of Texas Medical Branch have identified evidence of arenavirus infection in the three patients who died after being hospitalized with similar fatal hemorrhagic fever illnesses between June 1999 and May 2000. They reported their findings in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Scientists at the Chinese University of Hong Kong propose that the designations of type 1 and type 2 diabetes are no longer valid. Rather data collected in a 5-year prospective, noninterventional study at centers in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Chennai, Malaysia and Singapore launched in 1997 indicate it is a single disease with onset time and severity determined by genetic polymorphisms.

Researchers at Glasgow University, indicates that Lp-PLA2 (lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2), an enzyme that travels in tandem with LDL cholesterol, may serve as a significant new marker, independent of LDL, to predict the risk of heart attack. The study thus also suggests the potential importance of Lp-PLA2 as a novel target for therapy to prevent heart attack, therapy that would be based on a rationale different from reducing cholesterol. The study was funded by a grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb and diaDexus.
Source: The New England Journal of Medicine October 2000;343.

Researchers at Toronto's Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Centre and seven clinical sites in the United States are investigating the use of a test for lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), one of a family of lipid compounds called lsyophospholipids as a marker for the presence of ovarian and other reproductive cancers. Researchers hope the new test will surpass the shortcomings of the current blood test for ovarian cancer that measures the level of CA125. The study is expected to be completed by April 2001.

Scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have begun using a neonatal screening test for medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (MCADD) that causes 2% to 4% of cases of sudden infant death syndrome. They report that it appears to be more common than phenylketonuria (PKU), the condition every US newborn is routinely screened for. MCADD is an inborn error of metabolism that prevents the proper digestion of body fat stores.

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