Healthcare online Keeping you up-to-date
VOL.  18     ISSUE:  3  March    2020 Medical Services Department

SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.





P G Dip. Business Management



Rubyeat Adnan




Dear Doctor:

Welcome to this edition of "e- SQUARE" !

Hope you are enjoying this online healthcare bulletin !

This issue features a variety of articles including-

 "COVID-19 !", "Tissue Regeneration !", "Fatty Liver Disease !", "Breast Cancer !", "Detects Harmful Bacteria !", "Antibiotic Daptomycin !".

In our regular feature, we have some products information of SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd. as well.

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Editorial Team

Reply Mode      : e-square@squaregroup.com

The views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect those of its editor or SQUARE PHARMACEUTICALS LTD.

 COVID-19 !

                                      COVID-19 spreads quickly and sometimes people have no symptoms

Infectious disease researchers studying the novel coronavirus were able to identify how quickly the virus can spread, a factor that may help public health officials in their efforts at containment. Time between cases in a chain of transmission is less than a week and that more than 10% of patients are infected by somebody who has the virus but does not yet have symptoms. Researchers found that the average serial interval for the novel coronavirus in China was approximately four days. This also is among the first studies to estimate the rate of asymptomatic transmission. The speed of an epidemic depends on two things how many people each case infects and how long it takes for infection between people to spread. The first quantity is called the reproduction number; the second is the serial interval. The short serial interval of COVID-19 means emerging outbreaks will grow quickly and could be difficult to stop, the researchers said. Researcher examined more than 450 infection case reports from 93 cities in China and found the strongest evidence yet that people without symptoms must be transmitting the virus, known as pre-symptomatic transmission. According to the paper, more than 1 in 10 infections were from people who had the virus but did not yet feel sick. This new evidence could provide guidance to public health officials on how to contain the spread of the disease.

SOURCE: Science Daily News, March 2020 

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 Tissue Regeneration !

                             Stem cells and nerves interact in tissue regeneration and cancer progression

Stem cells can generate a variety of specific tissues and are increasingly used for clinical applications such as the replacement of bone or cartilage. However, stem cells are also present in cancerous tissues and are involved in cancer progression and metastasis. Researchers elucidate how stem cells promote neuronal growth in tissue regeneration and in cancer progression. The first study compared the interaction of neurons with two different human stem cell populations, namely dental pulp stem cells and bone marrow stem cells. Both can differentiate into various cell types such as bone, cartilage and fat cells. Human bone marrow stem cells are isolated from skeletal bones and are the gold standard for bone regenerative approaches. Using the "organ-on-a-chip" technology, which relies on small three-dimensional devices mimicking the basic functions of human organs and tissues, the researchers demonstrated that both types of stem cells promoted neuronal growth. The dental pulp stem cells, however, yielded better results compared to bone marrow stem cells. In the second study, the researchers examined the interaction between nerves and cancer stem cells found in ameloblastoma, an aggressive tumour of the mouth & it appears that nerves are fundamental for the survival and function of cancer stem cells. These results create new possibilities for cancer treatment using drugs that modify the communication between neurons and cancer stem cells.

SOURCE: Science Daily News, March 2020

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 Fatty Liver Disease !

                                                                                 New treatment strategy for fatty liver disease

Researchers have identified a molecular pathway that when silenced could restore the normal function of immune cells in people with fatty liver disease. The findings could lead to new strategies for treating the condition, which is a major health risk for people with obesity. In this study, the researchers wanted to examine what happens on a cellular and molecular level in mouse and human livers overloaded with fat, and what may be done to help restore the damage. They found that liver macrophages, a type of white blood cells important for the immune system, respond to the unwanted fat by trying to burn it. In the process, these immune cells end up producing excessive amounts of oxidants that causes damage to the liver. Further investigation revealed that an antioxidant protein called NRF2, which usually protects the body from harmful oxidants, was completely shut down in the liver of the obese patients and mice. The researchers also found elevated levels of a small non-coding RNA molecule, or a microRNA, called miR144 in the livers of obese individuals and mice. Both the immune cells and the liver's most abundant cells, the hepatocytes, produce more of this specific microRNA in response to oxidative stress. The miR144 molecule affects the NRF2 gene by decreasing its protein levels, which leads to a weaker antioxidant response, according to the researchers. Using a technology that enables silencing of specific genes in liver macrophages, the researchers were able to suppress the expression of miR144 in the immune cells. This lowered the amounts of oxidants produced in the whole liver and restored the antioxidant response, suggesting crosstalk between the macrophage and hepatocyte liver cells.

SOURCE: Science Daily News, March 2020 

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 Breast Cancer !

                                                                    Intake of dairy milk with greater risk of breast cancer

Intake of dairy milk is associated with a greater risk of breast cancer in women, according to a new study conducted by researchers. Researcher found that moderate amounts of dairy milk consumption can increase women's risk of breast cancer up to 80% depending on the amount consumed. Dietary intakes of nearly 53,000 North American women were evaluated for the study, all of whom were initially free of cancer and were followed for nearly eight years. Dietary intakes were estimated from food frequency questionnaires (FFQ), also repeated 24 hour recalls, and a baseline questionnaire had questions about demographics, family history of breast cancer, physical activity, alcohol consumption, hormonal and other medication use, breast cancer screening, and reproductive and gynecological history. By the end of the study period, there were 1,057 new breast cancer cases during follow-up. No clear associations were found between soy products and breast cancer, independent of dairy. But, when compared to low or no milk consumption, higher intakes of dairy calories and dairy milk were associated with greater risk of breast cancer, independent of soy intake. Fraser noted that the results had minimal variation when comparing intake of full fat versus reduced or nonfat milks; there were no important associations noted with cheese and yogurt. A hazardous effect of dairy is consistent with the recent AHS-2 report suggesting that vegans but not lacto-ovo-vegetarians experienced less breast cancer than non-vegetarians. Researcher said dairy milk does have some positive nutritional qualities, but these need to be balanced against other possible, less helpful effects. This work suggests the urgent need for further research.

SOURCE: Science Daily News, March 2020

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 Detects Harmful Bacteria !

                                                                     New device quickly detects harmful bacteria in blood

Researcher have created a tiny device that can rapidly detect harmful bacteria in blood, allowing health care professionals to pinpoint the cause of potentially deadly infections and fight them with drugs. Researcher said the rapid identification of drug-resistant bacteria allows health care providers to prescribe the right drugs, boosting the chances of survival. Drug-resistant bacteria, or super-bugs, are a major public health concern. Globally, at least 700,000 people die each year as a result of drug-resistant infections, including 230,000 deaths from multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. That number could soar to 10 million deaths a year by 2050 if no action is taken, according to a 2019 report. Based on a new approach, the tiny new device rapidly isolates, retrieves and concentrates target bacteria from bodily fluids. It efficiently filters particles and bacteria, capturing about 86 percent of them. The nano-device has magnetic beads of different sizes that are designed to trap, concentrate and retrieve Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria. The small spaces between the beads are used to isolate bacteria in the device. The inexpensive, transparent device is easy to fabricate and operate, making it ideal for detecting disease-causing organisms in laboratory and health care settings, according to the study. The research team is working to perfect the device and plans to add multiple devices onto a small chip and explore scaling up testing in the field.

SOURCE: Science Daily News, March 2020

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 Antibiotic Daptomycin !

                                                       Antibiotic intercepts building blocks of the bacterial envelope

One of the last arrows in the quiver in the fight against dangerous bacteria is the reserve antibiotic daptomycin. It is used primarily when conventional drugs fail due to resistant bacteria. Although the antibiotic was developed around 30 years ago, its exact mode of action was previously unclear. Daptomycin, which was launched in the USA in 2003 and in Germany in 2006. It is used for the treatment of infections with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and resistant enterococci. There were different theories on how this antibiotic attacks and kills bacteria. One of them was that daptomycin perforates the bacterial envelope and leads to a potassium efflux that ends with the death of the bacterium. The interdisciplinary team from the fields of medicine, pharmacology and physical chemistry used a wide variety of scientific methods to discover the antibiotic's mode of action. The researchers first labelled daptomycin with a fluorescent dye that glows green. This enabled them to follow exactly where the antibiotic docks to the staphylococcal cells under the high-resolution microscope. Researcher said Daptomycin binds to the bacteria in regions where the new cell wall is just being synthesized. Like in a construction kit, the bacterial cell wall is assembled from numerous building blocks. Further analyses carried out by the researchers on staphylococci and synthetically produced bacterial walls showed that two of these building blocks in particular are hugely important for the effect of daptomycin: the central cell wall building block "lipid II" and the membrane lipid phosphatidylglycerol (PG). This is exactly where daptomycin comes into play: The antibiotic captures these important building blocks and blocks the further construction of the cell wall. As a result, the bacterial cell wall becomes unstable resulting in the outflow of various ions, including potassium. The outflow of ions is not the actual killing mechanism of daptomycin, as originally thought, but a consequence of bacterial cell death.

SOURCE: Science Daily News, March 2020

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Products of SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

  Product Lanso-DTM
  Generic Name Dexlansoprazole
  Strength 60 mg
  Dosage form Capsule
  Therapeutic Category Antiulcerant
  Product ClopiroxTM
Generic Name

Ciclopirox Olamine



Dosage form Shampoo
Therapeutic Category Topical Antifungal
  Product D-BalanceTM
Generic Name Cholecalciferol 
Strength 50,000 IU
  Dosage form Licap
Therapeutic Category Vitamin

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