Healthcare online Keeping you up-to-date
VOL.  12     ISSUE:  9    September  2014 Medical Services Department

SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.





P G Dip. Business Management





Dear Doctor:

Welcome to this edition of 'e-SQUARE' .

Our current issue focused on some interesting features like

"Blood Sugar & Stroke !", "Fish & Hearing !", "New Gene !", "Social Networking !", "'Traffic Pollution Alert !", "Vit-E & Cataract !".

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

Please send us your feedback !

Click on to reply mode.

Yours sincerely,


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.

 Blood Sugar & Stroke !

                                         Tight Blood Sugar Control Doesn't Prevent Strokes In Diabetics: Study

A six-year study of people with type 2 diabetes found that intensively lowering blood pressure had a long-lasting effect in preventing heart attacks, strokes and deaths. But intensive blood sugar control didn't produce those benefits, the researchers found. For the study, investigators followed nearly 8,500 participants of a completed diabetes trial. Some participants had had their blood pressure and blood sugar levels strictly controlled, while others had received standard care. The researchers wanted to assess the long-term effects of the intensive control, which ended when the trial concluded. "One of the points of doing this study was to see if lowering blood sugar for five years might, down the track, translate into protection against stroke and heart attack -- it didn't," said researcher. The original study -- dubbed the advance study -- "showed clearly that patient got these great benefits from blood pressure reduction and also got some benefit from blood sugar lowering," he said. The unanswered question, he said, was if intensive blood pressure and blood sugar control were stopped, would the benefits go away or last. To find out, they stopped the intensive treatment, but continued to follow the trial participants for an additional 5.9 years. Over that time, they did find a lasting benefit of intensively lowering blood sugar levels to 6.5 percent in preventing kidney disease, a common complication of uncontrolled diabetes, researcher said. "Probably the five years of treatment we gave them led to changes in the kidney that continued to protect people for many years after." Among patients who had their blood pressure reduced in the original trial to 135/75 mm Hg -- considered intensive control -- the benefit in reducing the risk of dying from a heart attack or stroke remained, although to a lesser degree, as time went by, he added. "The implication is to continue to take blood pressure drugs if patient want to get maximum protection," he said. In the trial, gliclazide -- an older medication -- was the drug used most often to reduce blood sugar. This is in a class of drugs called sulfonylureas. It's possible, he said, that a newer diabetes drug might have a more beneficial effect in preventing heart attacks and strokes.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2014

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 Fish & Hearing !

    Eating More Fish May Reduce Hearing Loss In Women

Eating more fish may reduce a woman's risk for hearing loss, according to a large new study. Researchers found that consuming at least two servings of fish and omega-3s (long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids) each week could help prevent or delay hearing loss. "Acquired hearing loss is a highly prevalent, and often disabling, chronic health condition," the study's author said "Although a decline in hearing is often considered an inevitable aspect of aging, the identification of several potentially modifiable risk factors has provided new insight into possibilities for prevention or delay of acquired hearing loss." The study, published online Sept. 10 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, involved more than 65,000 women who were followed from 1991 to 2009. Of these women, more than 11,600 developed hearing loss. But those women who ate two or more servings of fish weekly had a 20 percent lower risk for hearing loss than those who ate fish only rarely, the study showed. More specifically, eating more omega-3s, which are commonly found in seafood, was linked to a lower risk for hearing loss. "Consumption of any type of fish (tuna, dark fish, light fish, or shellfish) tended to be associated with lower risk. These findings suggest that diet may be important in the prevention of acquired hearing loss," study author noted. While the researchers found an association between greater fish consumption and hearing preservation, they didn't prove a direct cause-and-effect relationship. 

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2014

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 New Gene !

                                                 New Gene Variants For Prostate Cancer Identified

An international team of scientists has identified 23 new genetic variants linked to a greater risk for prostate cancer. Although more research is needed, the researchers said their findings, which bring the total number of common gene variants associated with prostate cancer to 100, could help doctors diagnose the disease earlier and could lead to the development of new treatments. "Our study tells us more about the effect of the genetic hand that men are dealt on their risk of prostate cancer. We know that there are a few major genes that are rare and significantly affect prostate cancer risk, but what we are now learning is that there are many other common genetic variants that individually have only a small effect on risk, but collectively can be very important," researcher explained. Eeles added, "To use the playing cards analogy again, sometimes multiple low cards can combine to form a high-risk score. We can now explain a third of the inherited risk of prostate cancer, and will shortly be conducting a clinical trial to find out whether testing for genetic variants in men can successfully pick up the disease early, and help direct targeted interventions for patients." The scientists team examined the genetic information of over 87,000 men of European, African, Japanese, and Latino heritage. The investigators compiled genetic population studies of 43,303 men with prostate cancer and 43,737 "controls" (without prostate cancer) to increase the likelihood they would identify new variants. The researchers found 16 new genetic indicators associated with prostate cancer risk in European men, including a variant linked with increased risk of early onset disease. They also identified seven genetic indicators in men of mixed heritage. As a result, the study's authors said they could now explain 33 percent of the inherited origins of prostate cancer in European men. Among the European men assessed for the 100 common variants, the 10 percent at greatest risk are nearly three times more likely to develop prostate cancer, according to the study. The researchers also found the top 1 percent are nearly six times more likely to develop the disease. Looking ahead, the researchers plan to investigate if these new findings could improve on prostate cancer screening tests. In particular, they are examining whether genetic testing could help diagnose more men at risk for aggressive forms of prostate cancer that need immediate treatment.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2014

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 Social Networking !

Social Networking Sites Can Help Obese Lose Weight: Study

Social networking sites can help people lose weight, according to a new study. For people who are obese, sites like Twitter and Facebook can be an inexpensive and convenient source of support from doctors as well as peers, researchers found. "One advantage of using social media over other methods is that it offers the potential to be much more cost effective and practical for day-to-day use when compared to traditional approaches," the study's lead author, "The feeling of being part of a community allows patients to draw on the support of their peers as well as clinicians. They can get advice from their doctor without the inconvenience or cost of having to travel, and clinicians can provide advice to many patients simultaneously," study author said. The study's authors examined the results of 12 previous studies involving almost 1,900 people in the United States, Europe, east Asia and Australia. They found that the people who used social networking sites to lose weight had a modest but significant decrease in body mass index. "The use of social media to treat obesity encourages patients to be more pro-active and empowers them to contribute towards their own treatment. It's not the only solution to the obesity epidemic, but it should be introduced as an element of every country's obesity strategy." Lead researcher noted. The study, written for the World Innovation Summit for Health pointed out that social networking may not be a good option for all overweight people trying to lose weight. "There are also possible downsides, such as potential privacy issues and a need for the patient to be Internet savvy, so it may not be right for everyone," lead author explained. "The studies we looked at were the first to investigate social media approaches to obesity. There needs to be more research into this area to see what approaches work best for which patients in light of the dramatic global adoption of social media tools and content," study author added. Obesity is a global health issue, contributing to other chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer and mental health issues.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2014

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 Traffic Pollution Allert !

                                                        Traffic Pollution Linked To Higher Levels Of Obesity Hormone

Older people exposed to high levels of black carbon -- the fine particle air pollution from traffic -- may have increased levels of leptin, a hormone linked to obesity, diabetes and heart disease, a new study suggests. Although the research doesn't establish a cause-and-effect relationship between black carbon exposure and leptin levels, the study authors said their findings could help explain the association between traffic-related air pollution and the risk for heart disease. "If confirmed, these findings support the emerging evidence suggesting that certain sources of traffic pollution may be associated with adverse cardiometabolic effects," the researchers wrote. "Cardiometabolic" refers to heart disease, stroke and diabetes. In conducting the study, the investigators measured levels of leptin in the blood of 765 older adults living in Boston. The researchers examined the association between this hormone and the participants' exposure to black carbon. The study revealed a strong link between exposure to black carbon and leptin levels. Those with the greatest exposure to black carbon had lower incomes and higher rates of high blood pressure and diabetes, the researchers noted. These people were also less likely to be white. Even after taking these differences into account, leptin levels were 27 percent higher for older people with the greatest exposure to black carbon, according. There was no association, however, between leptin levels and the distance from the participants' homes to a major road, the study authors said. The researchers concluded that the study participants' exposure to black carbon was the result of a wide range of roads situated near their homes.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2014

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 Vit-E & Cataract !

                                              Vitamin E, Selenium Supplements Don't Seem to Prevent Cataracts

Daily supplements of selenium or vitamin E don't seem to protect against the development of age-related cataracts among men, a new study indicates. Previous animal research has suggested that one or both could help prevent cataracts. To investigate this further, researcher examined data from a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of selenium and vitamin E. The trial was initially designed to study prevention of prostate cancer. Of the more than 35,000 men involved in the initial study, more than 11,000 were asked to report if they had been diagnosed with cataracts or undergone cataract removal surgery since the study began. All of the black men in the study were aged 50 years or older. All of the other men were aged 55 years or older. The average treatment and follow-up period was about six years. There were almost 400 cases of cataracts during that time, according to the findings. Among the men taking selenium, there were 185 cases of cataracts, compared to 204 in the group that didn't take this supplement. Meanwhile, 197 cases of cataracts were diagnosed among the men taking vitamin E, compared to 192 in the group that didn't take it. The men taking the supplements and those who didn't also had similar rates of cataract removal, the researchers pointed out. "These randomized trial data from a large [group] of apparently healthy men indicate that long-term daily supplemental use of vitamin E has no material impact on cataract incidence," the study authors wrote. "The data also exclude any large beneficial effect on cataract for long-term supplemental use of selenium, with or without vitamin E, although a smaller but potentially important beneficial effect could not be ruled out," they added.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2014

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Products of SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

  Product Paloset
  Generic Name Palonosetron
Strength 0.075 mg/5ml, 0.25 mg/5ml
  Dosage form Injection
  Therapeutic Category Antiemetic
  Product Norvis Suppository
Generic Name Tiemonium Methylsulphate
Strength 20 mg
Dosage form Suppository
Therapeutic Category Antispasmodic
  Product Pivalo
  Generic Name Pitavastatin
  Strength 4 mg
  Dosage form Tablet
  Therapeutic Category Lipid Lowering Agent

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