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VOL.  15     ISSUE:  9    September  2017 Medical Services Department

SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.





P G Dip. Business Management







Dear Doctor:

Welcome to our healthcare bulletin 'e-SQUARE' .

Our current issue focused on some interesting features like

"Exercise Induced Kidney Damage !", "Leukemia Drug !", "Lethal Combo !", "Biologic Drug & Asthma !", "'PSA Testing !", "Preterm Birth !".

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.

 Exercise Induced Kidney Damage !

                                                         Exercise May Stem Kidney Damage in Lupus Patients

Regular exercise may slow kidney damage in people with lupus while stress may prompt the opposite effect. The autoimmune disease causes the body to attack and damage vital organs such as the kidneys. The lead researcher put lupus in the spotlight last week when she received a kidney transplant because the disease had ravaged her own kidneys. But the new research, which included two mice trials and a slightly different human trial, offers new strategies that might help other lupus patients avoid the same fate. In the first trial, only 45 percent of mice with the disease that did moderate exercise (45 minutes of treadmill walking a day) had severe inflammatory damage to the kidneys, compared with 88 percent of those that did not exercise. In another experiment, mice with lupus that were subjected to daily stress had significant increases in inflammatory kidney damage compared to those that didn't have stress. If we observe similar results in human studies, this could mean that stress reduction and a daily regimen of physical therapy should be considered as interventional strategies to be used alongside current medical treatment. The lead researcher has already begun to explore that possibility. A small number of lupus patients do a daily tai chi exercise program. Initial findings showed a significant decline in some indicators of inflammation in the patients.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2017

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 Leukemia Drug !

    FDA OKs Return of Once-Withdrawn Leukemia Drug  

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved an altered dose of the drug Mylotarg to treat a distinctive type of acute myeloid leukemia-CD33-positive AML. An earlier version of the drug had been withdrawn from the market when health risks started to emerge. Known generically as gemtuzumab ozogamicin, the drug received the go-ahead to treat adults newly diagnosed with CD33-positive AML. It also can treat children aged 2 years and older with the disease if they've relapsed or have not responded to initial treatment. More than 21,000 people will be diagnosed with AML this year in the United States, and about 10,600 will die of it, according to the U.S. National Cancer Institute. This isn't the drug's first trip through the FDA. In 2000, Mylotarg received accelerated approval for older adults with CD33-positive AML who had relapsed. But because of a "high number of early deaths" and lack of data verifying clinical benefit, it later was voluntarily taken off the market, the FDA said. The new approval involves a lower dose, a different patient group, and a new schedule along with chemotherapy or on its own. Prior to its approval Friday, the drug was tested along with chemotherapy in a trial of 271 patients with newly diagnosed CD33-positive AML. Patients who received the chemo-Mylotarg combination went longer without complications than those who received chemotherapy alone -- half went more than 17 months with the combination treatment versus a median of 9.5 months for the chemo-only group. As a stand-alone treatment, Mylotarg was studied in two trials. One included 237 newly diagnosed AML patients who could not tolerate or chose not to receive chemotherapy. Patients given Mylotarg survived about one month longer on average than those who received only "best supportive care" -- almost 5 months versus less than 4 months, the findings showed. The second stand-alone trial included 57 patients who had suffered one relapse. After one course of Mylotarg, 26 percent of patients achieved a remission that lasted roughly 11.6 months on average, according to the lead researcher.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2017

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 Lethal Combo !

                                                 HIV and Smoking a Lethal Combo for the Lungs

HIV patients who take their medication but also smoke are about 10 times more likely to die from lung cancer than from AIDS-related causes. Lifesaving antiretroviral drugs have improved life expectancy to the point that patients now have more to fear from tobacco than HIV, said lead researcher. Based on the new findings, smoking cessation should be a focus of treatment. More than 40 percent of people with HIV are smokers, a rate more than double that of the general population. Fatalism and depression among HIV patients often lead them to take up the habit, even though the threat of HIV has decreased significantly for those who take their medication as prescribed. An evidence review published in The Lancet in May found that HIV patients on antiretroviral therapy stand an excellent chance of reaching old age. For example, average 20-year-olds starting treatment today will live into their mid-60s. In the past, most people didn't live long enough to face the consequences of smoking. Smoking wasn't commonly thought of as a threat to their health. Prior studies have shown that HIV infection increases the risk of lung cancer separate from smoking. The research team found that nearly 25 percent of HIV patients who take their medication but continue to smoke will die from lung cancer. Heavy smokers are at even greater risk, with about 30 percent dying from lung cancer. Overall, people with HIV who smoke and adhere to their drug regimen are 6 to 13 times more likely to die from lung cancer than HIV/AIDS, depending on how intensely they smoke and whether they are male or female, the lead researcher added.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2017

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 Biologic Drug & Asthma !

                                            New 'Biologic' Drug May Help Severe Asthma

A "biologic" drug in development to treat severe asthma reduces the rate of serious attacks by about two-thirds compared to a placebo drug, according to preliminary research findings. If approved, the drug, tezepelumab, could join a group of costly medications that appear to offer relief when nothing else curbs respiratory distress. A new era has begun in which many new drugs are being developed for patients with severe asthma. The new research was funded by the drug's developers, Amgen and MedImmune, a subsidiary of AstraZeneca. An estimated 15 percent of asthma patients can't control the disease with current inhaled medications. Tezepelumab, an injectable drug, is a monoclonal antibody. Drugs in this category help many patients with severe asthma, but not all of them, lead researcher said. That's because the disease comes in different types. The new study represents the second of three phases of research required before a drug can be approved in the United States. Top researcher wanted to understand tezepelumab's effects on asthma patients who'd suffered at least one asthma attack that required hospitalization within the past year, or two attacks that forced physicians to increase their medication level. The 584 study patients with severe asthma were nonsmokers, aged 18 to 75, who used asthma inhalers. They were randomly divided into low-dose, medium-dose or high-dose groups, or assigned to take a sham drug. The lead researcher found that those on the drug had 61 percent to 71 percent fewer asthma attacks that required a hospital visit or change in medication dose than those who took a placebo. The researchers reported two cases of serious side effects -- stroke and pneumonia in one patient, and Guillain-Barre syndrome in another. The patient with stroke and pneumonia died.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2017

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 PSA Testing !

                                                                                      New Research Finds Value in PSA Testing

Despite ongoing debate over the value of prostate cancer screening, a new review says it can indeed reduce a man's risk of dying from the disease. Early tumor detection using the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test lowers a man's risk of prostate cancer death by 25 percent to 32 percent, the new analysis of two major trials of PSA testing found. The amount of early diagnosis was very strongly correlated with the reduced risk of prostate cancer death, the lead researcher said. However, there's still a good chance that many men will wind up treated for prostate cancer that would not have killed them. There are definitely harms and, on average, in a population probably five times as many men will be over treated. It's still going to require a discussion between a person and their doc, because of the overtreatment problem, lead researcher added. Prostate cancer surgery can lead to impotence and incontinence, drastically affecting a man's quality of life. At the same time, most prostate tumors are slow-growing, and most men with prostate cancer wind up dying of heart disease or some other cause. Because of this, debate has raged for years among health care experts about whether men should be screened for prostate cancer at all. Until about 2008, many doctors and medical societiesí encouraged yearly screening for men aged 50 and older using the PSA test, which examines blood for a protein produced by cells of the prostate gland, according to the U.S. National Cancer Institute. Elevated PSA levels often occur in men with prostate cancer. Unfortunately, the trials provided confusion rather than clarity. The U.S. trial reported no benefit of PSA testing, while the European trial found a 20 percent reduced risk of death in men who underwent the screening. As a result, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) made the controversial move in 2012 to recommend against PSA testing altogether. Other groups, like the American Cancer Society, recommended that doctors share information from the clinical trials with men and let the patients decide.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2017

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 Preterm Birth !

                                                             Researchers Find Genes Linked to Preterm Birth

Researchers say they've pinpointed gene areas linked with preterm birth and they said this could pave new ways to prevent the leading cause of death among children under age 5 worldwide. The team looked at DNA and other data from more than 50,000 women from the United States and northern European countries. The researchers identified six gene regions that influence the length of pregnancy and the timing of birth. These are exciting findings that could play a key role in reducing newborn deaths and giving every child the chance to grow up smart and strong, said lead researcher. Preterm infants are at increased risk of death. Those who survive often have serious, lifelong health problems. The new study found that one of the gene areas identified involves cells of the lining of the uterus, which may play a role in pregnancy length. Researchers said this may be a target for medications to prevent preterm birth. Another finding from the studies involves the dietary mineral selenium and how a deficiency might affect preterm birth risk. Selenium is found in Brazil nuts, yellowfin tuna, beef liver, sardines and some meats. We have known for a long time that preterm birth is a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Previous research has suggested that about 30 to 40 percent of the risk for preterm birth is linked to genetic factors. This new study is the first to provide robust information as to what some of those genetic factors actually are. This is a very exciting discovery that can be expected to lead to the development of new treatments to prevent pregnant women from going into labor too soon and to give more babies a healthy start in life.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, September 2017

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New Products of SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

  Product SuviruxTM
  Generic Name Sofosbuvir
Strength 400 mg
  Dosage form Tablet
  Therapeutic Category Antiviral
  Product SalicidTM
Generic Name Salicylic Acid
Strength 12%
Dosage form Cream
Therapeutic Category Antihyperkeratotic agent
  Product OcubromTM
  Generic Name Bromfenac
  Strength 0.07%
  Dosage form Cream
  Therapeutic Category Ocular NSAID

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