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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 November 1998

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine have discovered that a genetic mutation found in colon cancer cells can also be found in the normal tissue of these cancer patients. Overall, 44% of colon cancer patients had a genetic anomaly, known as loss of imprinting (LOI), in both their cancer cells and normal colon tissue. About 12% of healthy people also had LOI in the cells of the colon even though they had no signs of cancer, according to the study of 43 subjects.
Source: Nature Medicine November, 1998;4.

An automated computer dosing program for anticoagulant therapy developed by clinicians at the University of Manchester, UK performed better than staff at five experienced centers. In the study, 285 patients taking anticoagulant drug therapies were monitored either by their physician or by a computerized dosing system. The system relies on data from periodic blood tests and other physiological indicators to help it decide whether to change dosage levels in individual patients. The authors report that after 3 months of therapy, "computer-generated dosing was significantly beneficial overall in achieving target (therapy levels)."
Source: The Lancet November 7, 1998

A research team led by Thomas Merigan Jr., MD, Becker Professor of Medicine and director of the Center for AIDS Research at Stanford University has found that an unusual mutation, adding two extra building blocks to a key viral protein, enables the AIDS virus to resist multiple drugs. The newly identified version of HIV, may resist an entire class of RT-inhibiting drugs, the Stanford team found.

The NIH has announced that the Human Genome Project, the program undertaken to sequence the entire human genetic code, is years ahead of schedule and under budget. The project is on a course that should be completed by the year 2003. It is expected that project researchers will have a working draft of the entire DNA sequence of the human species by the year 2001. More than half the sequencing is already completed.

Swedish scientists headed by Dr Charles Kurland of the University of Uppsala, Sweden have mapped all the 834 genes in Rickettsia prowazekii, the bacterium that causes epidemic typhus. Typhus has been one of the great killers in human history with 20 to 30 million deaths after the First World War alone. New epidemics of typhus are now raging in Burundi in Central Africa, and threaten to surface elsewhere in Africa.
Source: Nature, November 1998.

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