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VOL.  14     ISSUE:  10    October  2016 Medical Services Department

SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.


Obesity & Autism !




P G Dip. Business Management



Dr. Md. Saiful Alam




Dear Doctor,

Welcome to this edition of 'e-SQUARE'.

In this issue, we focused on some interesting features like -"Freeze Therapy !", "HIV Suppression !", "Hearing Loss !",  "Obesity & Autism !",  "Statin Alert !", "Zika Damage !".

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


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Editorial Team

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

Freeze Therapy !

Freeze Therapy: An Alternative to Breast Cancer Surgery

A freezing technique known as cryoablation might be a viable alternative to lumpectomy for treating small, early stage breast cancers. In the small study of 86 patients, cryoablation was shown to successfully to the majority of small breast cancers with few side effects or complications, said by lead researcher. Using this minimally invasive approach to destroy cancer cells, there should be little to no change in the appearance of the breast. The major risk is not killing all the cancerous cells. Another surgeon noted that although further research is still needed, cryoablation appears to be a potential new tool that we can offer women. For one thing, the tumor can only be about a centimeter, that's less than half an inch. The freezing technique has been used for years to treat cancers of the liver, lung and kidney, as well as noncancerous breast tumors.  For the new study, the researchers performed the freezing technique on breast cancer patients in 19 centers across the United States. The tumors had to be 2 centimeters (about three-quarters of an inch) or smaller. Because the study was designed to assess the technique's effectiveness in advance of government approval, the researchers surgically removed the tumors 28 days after the extreme-cold treatment. Then they examined the tissue in a pathology lab. Overall, freezing was successful for 92 percent of the cancers. And it worked for all tumors measuring less than 1 centimeter, lead researcher added. The outpatient procedure is done with local anesthesia. A doctor uses ultrasound imaging to help guide a thin, needle-like probe into the tumors. There, the probe emits liquid nitrogen, which creates an ice ball that freezes the tissue. The nitrogen doesn't touch the tissue, lead researcher added.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, October 2016

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HIV Suppression !

Animal Study Hints at Drug-Free Suppression of HIV

Scientists may have found a way to suppress an HIV-like infection in monkeys, without the need for ongoing drug therapy. The researchers added antibody therapy to standard drug treatment given to macaque monkeys infected with simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV). After three months, the animals were taken off the drugs, but their viral levels remained low to undetectable for close to two years. Experts stressed that the animal findings need to be viewed with caution, and that many questions remain. But, they were also hopeful this could lead to a therapy that frees at least some people from their HIV drug regimens. The drug "cocktails" used to treat HIV -- known as combined antiretroviral therapy (ART) -- have changed the face of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in countries where they are widely available. ART is highly effective at keeping the virus at almost undetectable levels in the blood, said by lead researcher. But there are still some major issues. One is that when patients stop ART, the virus comes roaring back. So they have to take the drugs every day for the rest of their lives. That means facing the risk of long-term side effects such as heart, kidney and liver disease, type 2 diabetes and bone density loss. And people eventually develop resistance to the drugs they are taking, and need to switch to others. A therapy that could essentially send HIV into remission, and release people from a lifetime drug regimen, would be a major advance, lead researcher added. For this study, researcher used an antibody that targets a protein on immune system T cells called alpha4-beta7 integrin. The protein helps T cells find their way to lymph tissue in the gut. The gut is a major reservoir for HIV, and HIV infects T cells. So Ansari reasoned that if T cells could be blocked from flocking to the gut during the acute stage of HIV infection, the T cells might be protected. The investigators found that the alpha4-beta7 antibody seemed to do more than that. The researchers began treatment on 18 macaques that had been infected with SIV for five weeks. The animals spent three months on ART drugs; four weeks after starting ART, the animals also began receiving infusions of either the antibody or a "control" substance, every three weeks. Drug treatment got the animals' blood levels of SIV down. When drugs were stopped, the virus rebounded in the control group. Monkeys treated with the antibody, on the other hand, showed a much different pattern: Six of the eight remaining in the study showed some resurgence in the virus, but it was contained within four weeks. The other two showed no SIV rebound. But no one knows whether the findings will "translate" to humans.

SOURCE:  HealthDay News, October 2016

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Hearing Loss !

New Clues to Age-Related Hearing Loss

When background noise makes it hard to carry on a conversation, many older people chalk it up to hearing loss. But a new, small study finds that the problem may not just be in ear, but also in brain. Lead researcher found that the brain's ability to process speech declines with age. For the study, 32 English-speaking adults divided into two groups -- one with an average age of 22, the other with an average age of 65. Study participants were given a speech comprehension test and also underwent brain scans. In both quiet and noisy settings, the older people had more trouble tracking and understanding speech. Evidence of these hearing-related deficits in the older participants was also evident in the brain scans, lead researcher found. The findings suggest that age-related problems with understanding speech are not only due to an inability to hear at certain volumes. They may also occur because the brain cannot correctly interpret the meaning of sound signals, the researchers added.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, October 2016

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Obesity & Autism !

Obesity More Common Among Teens With Autism: Study

Teens with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may be more likely to be obese and stay obese throughout their teen years compared to other teenagers; a new study suggests. Lead researcher noted that childhood obesity could have long-term health consequences for those with ASDs. They said more study is needed to understand age-related changes that could help prevent and treat obesity among teens with the disorder. Children with developmental disabilities face unique challenges and are not always served by health interventions aimed at those without disorders such as ASD, said lead researcher. The complexity of their medical needs is both why particular attention should be paid to their circumstances and why it is difficult to do so. The study included almost 44,000 people between the ages of 10 and 17. The children and teens had participated in the 2011-2012 National Survey of Children's Health. That survey included information about weight, height, gender, race, socioeconomic status and whether or not someone had an ASD. Obesity was more common among the children and teens with an autism spectrum disorder. The researchers found 23 percent of those with the disorder were obese, compared to 14 percent of those who didn't have ASD. The rate of obesity among young people who didn't have autism spectrum disorder fell by 50 percent between the ages of 10 and 17. But, obesity rates among those with an ASD didn't change during these years, the study showed. Obesity was also more common among boys with ASD than girls, lead researcher added. The prevalence of obesity in the ASD group was high and remained so, while the prevalence in children without ASD declined over adolescence. Young people with autism spectrum disorder tend to have rigid behaviors, relying on routine and lack of change. They may also have sensory sensitivity. Use of food to ease these behaviors or reduce stress during certain situations could play a role in high rates of obesity among these children. Young people with ASD may also be less active, increasing their risk for weight gain, lead researcher added.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, October 2016

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Statin Alert !

                                                           Statins Often Interact With Other Heart Drugs

Cholesterol-lowering statins can interact with other drugs prescribed for heart disease. But there are ways to navigate the problem, according to new recommendations from the American Heart Association. The drugs are prescribed to people who either have atherosclerosis or are at risk of it, which means many statin users also take other cardiovascular drugs. The benefits of those drug combinations will generally outweigh the risks. But doctors and patients should be aware of how the drugs can interact. A whole range of heart medications can interact with statins, according to the heart association. The list includes: cholesterol drugs called fibrates, particularly gemfibrozil, blood pressure medications called calcium channel blockers, which include amlodipine, verapamil and diltiazem. Clot preventing drugs such as warfarin and ticagrelor. Drugs used to treat heart-rhythm problems, such as amiodarone, dronedarone and digoxin. Heart failure medications like ivabradine and sacubitril/valsartan. The most common issue is that the other drugs boost statin levels in the blood. That, in turn, raises the risk of muscle-related side effects. Statins can injure muscle tissue, most often causing muscle weakness or pain. Rarely, people develop a more severe problem called rhabdomyolosis, where the muscle fibers break down and may damage the kidneys. There are a couple of other potential consequences of statin interactions. Statins may, for example, raise blood levels of the clot-preventing drug warfarin, which could increase the risk of internal bleeding. Many of the interactions between statins and other heart drugs are "minor," and simply limiting the statin dose is often enough, lead researcher added. But there are some drug combinations that should be avoided. Lovastatin, simvastatin and pravastatin should not be used with the fibrate cholesterol drug gemfibrozil, for example, because of the risk of muscle injury. Lead researcher suggested that people talk to their doctor any time they develop symptoms, like muscle weakness or pain, that could be related to their statin or other medications.

SOURCE: HealthDay News , October 2016

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Zika Damage !

Zika Virus Can Damage Fetal Brain Late in Pregnancy: Study

The Zika virus may harm a baby's brain even if the mother is infected just before giving birth, a new study suggests. It had been believed that Zika infection posed a threat to a baby's brain only if the mother was infected during the first trimester. Since the Zika outbreak began in Brazil in April 2015, thousands of babies have been born with the devastating birth defect known as microcephaly, in which the head and brain are abnormally small. The new study included 55 Brazilian women infected by Zika during pregnancy and their infants. Medical imaging revealed that four infants whose mothers were infected with Zika between two weeks and one week before birth had central nervous system lesions characteristic of viral infections. Previous research has not associated these lesions with severe complications, but how they will affect brain development is unknown, the researchers added. Lead researcher wants to keep monitoring the development of these babies for several years in order to detect any problems. This discovery reveals another spectrum of the disease, making it even more complex, in addition to the dramatic cases of microcephaly; there are less severe manifestations that need to be properly understood. Another study led by same researchers found that Zika infection can be spread through organ transplants. They identified two kidney transplant patients and two liver transplant patients who were infected with Zika that was present in their new organs. All four patients had to be hospitalized but survived but alarming is these transplant recipients didn't have the typical symptoms of Zika, researcher added.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, October 2016

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New Products of SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

  Product Virux IV Injection
  Generic Name Acyclovir
  Strength 250 mg
  Dosage form IV Injection
  Therapeutic Category Antiviral
  Product FlonasinTM Nasal Spray  
Generic Name

Azelastine Hydrochloride and Fluticasone Propionate


137 mcg+50 mcg

Dosage form Nasal Spray
Therapeutic Category Topical Nasal Preparations
  Product Pylotrip - R Kit
  Generic Name Rabeprazole, Amoxicillin & Clarithromycin
Strength 20 mg+1gm+500mg
  Dosage form Tablet & Capsule
  Therapeutic Category Anti H. Pylori

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