Healthcare online Keeping you up-to-date
VOL.  10     ISSUE:  7    July 2012 Medical Services Department

SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.





P G Dip. Business Management

A.S.M. Shawkat Ali

MBBS, M. Phil





Dear Doctor:

Welcome to this edition of 'e-SQUARE' healthcare online !

Our current issue focused on some interesting features like

"Menopause & Aneurysm !", "Vaccine Combination !", "Kids & Older Dads !", "Omega 3 Alert !", "Pregnancy & Deaths !", "Combat Superbug !".

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.

 Menopause & Aneurysm !

Early Menopause May Raise Risk for Brain Aneurysm

Early menopause may be associated with an increased risk of brain aneurysm, new research suggests. For the study researchers included 76 postmenopausal women who had a brain aneurysm or an abnormal bulging of an artery in the brain. Aneurysms are serious, if leaks or ruptures, it can lead to stroke or death. About 26 percent of the women who had an aneurysm experienced menopause by age 40, compared with about 19 percent in a comparison group of women who didn't have an aneurysm. Every four-year increase in the age at which a woman went through menopause was associated with a 21 percent decreased risk of aneurysm. While the study found an association between early menopause and brain aneurysm, it did not prove that early menopause causes the condition. In addition, the study was retrospective, meaning that it started with women who had an aneurysm and looked back for factors that may have influenced risk. Researchers asked women about their medical history, including whether they had high blood pressure, diabetes, an underactive thyroid or high cholesterol, which can increase the risk of stroke. The women were also asked about their reproductive history, including how many pregnancies they had and their age when their periods began, to determine how much estrogen they were exposed to during their lifetime. The study found the average age women started menopause was similar for both groups. But going through menopause later in life and hormone replacement therapy were both associated with a decreased risk for aneurysm. Researchers said lower levels of estrogen that are associated with early menopause may explain the added risk of aneurysm.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, June 2012

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 Vaccine Combination !

New Combination Vaccine Protects Children Against Two Bacterial Diseases

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Menhibrix, a combination vaccine for infants and children ages 6 weeks through 18 months, for prevention of invasive disease caused by Neisseria meningitidis serogroups C and Yand Haemophilus influenzae type b. Diseases caused by the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis (meningococcal disease) and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib disease) can be life-threatening. These bacteria can infect the bloodstream causing sepsis, and the lining that surrounds the brain and spinal cord causing meningitis. In young children, Neisseria meningitidis and Haemophilus influenzae type b are important causes of bacterial meningitis. Without vaccination, children younger than two years are susceptible to these serious illnesses. Meningococcal and Hib diseases are particularly dangerous because both diseases often progress rapidly and can cause death or serious, long-lasting health consequences such as blindness, mental retardation or amputations. Early symptoms for both diseases often are difficult to distinguish from other common childhood illnesses. The effectiveness of Menhibrix was based on immune responses in several hundred U.S. infants and toddlers vaccinated with Menhibrix. For the Hib component of the vaccine, immune responses in infants and toddlers following vaccination with Menhibrix were comparable to immune responses in infants and toddlers who received an FDA-approved vaccine against invasive Hib disease. For the meningococcal component, study results showed that the vaccine produces antibodies in the blood at levels that are considered to be predictive of protection against invasive meningococcal disease caused by serogroups C and Y. The safety of Menhibrix was evaluated in about 7,500 infants and toddlers in the U.S., Mexico and Australia. Common adverse reactions reported after administration of Menhibrix were pain, redness and swelling at the injection site, irritability and fever. Menhibrix is given as a four-dose series at 2, 4, 6 and 12 through 15 months of age. The first dose may be given as early as 6 weeks of age. The fourth dose may be given as late as 18 months of age. With the approval of Menhibrix, there is now a combination vaccine that can be used to prevent potentially life-threatening Hib disease and two types of meningococcal disease in children.

SOURCE: FDA News Release, June 2012

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 Kids & Older Dads !

                                                 'Older Dads May Pass on Longevity to Kids, Study Finds

People whose fathers or grandfathers started having children at a later age may live longer, according to a new study. Researchers looked at telomere length in people in the Philippines. Telomeres are bits of DNA that protect the ends of chromosomes from deterioration. Longer telomeres appear to be associated with slower aging, while shorter telomeres seem to be associated with health problems that occur with aging. Longer telomeres were found in people whose fathers and grandfathers began families later in life, according to the study. The findings are fascinating, said the investigators. If our recent ancestors waited until later in adulthood before they reproduced, perhaps for cultural reasons, it would make sense for our bodies to prepare for something similar by investing the extra resources necessary to maintain healthy functioning at more advanced ages, said the author. However, the researchers said their findings should not be interpreted to mean that men should intentionally have children at a later age. Previous research has shown that older fathers are more likely to pass along harmful genetic mutations to their children. The authors of the study also suggest that more research is needed. They want to see if the longer telomeres that offspring of older fathers and grandfathers inherit at birth have fewer health problems and ailments as they age. Based upon the findings, investigators predict that this will be the case, but this is a question to be addressed in future studies.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, June 2012

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 Omega 3 Alert !

Omega-3 Supplements May Not Aid Aging Brain

Taking omega-3 fatty acid supplements, such as fish oil capsules, doesn't seem to help older people maintain their brain health, researchers report. A number of studies have suggested that omega-3 fatty acids may help keep nerve cells in the brain healthy into old age, but there is limited evidence for the role of these fatty acids in preventing dementia or decreased mental abilities, known as ‘cognitive decline’. Researchers compared the effects of omega-3 fatty acids taken in capsules or margarine to the effects of placebo capsules with sunflower oil or olive oil, or regular margarine, the ‘control’ group. The studies included a total of more than 3,500 people over the age of 60 and lasted between six and 40 months. None of the participants showed any signs of problems with their thinking skills or dementia at the start of the studies. People who consumed omega-3 fatty acid-containing capsules or margarine did no better on standard tests of mental abilities or on tests of memory and verbal skills, according to the findings. From these studies, there doesn't appear to be any benefit for cognitive health for older people of taking omega-3 supplements, report the co-author. However, these were relatively short-term studies, so investigators saw very little deterioration in cognitive function in either the intervention groups or the control groups. It may take much longer to see any effect of these supplements. The researchers said further studies are needed to assess the long-term effects of omega-3 fatty acids on mental decline, particularly in people with low dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, June 2012

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 Pregnancy & Deaths !

Pregnancy-Related Deaths Fall Worldwide: Report

The number of women worldwide who died from pregnancy-related complications each year fell from 12 million in 1990 to 7.6 million in 2010, according to a new report. It also found that child death rates in many African countries have dropped twice as fast in recent years as during the 1990s. The rate of decline was an average of 5 percent or more a year between 2000 and 2010, according to the report. Similar progress has occurred in reducing pregnancy-related deaths in certain developing countries. For example, maternal deaths fell by 75 percent in Equatorial Guinea, Nepal and Vietnam. Despite this good news, too many women and children are still dying, according to the report of an international group of academics and professionals. Every two minutes, a woman somewhere in the world dies from complications of pregnancy and her newborn's chances of survival are poor. For every woman who dies, another 20 to 30 women suffer major and sometimes lifelong problems due to pregnancy. Also every two minutes, nearly 30 young children die of disease and illness that could have been prevented or treated. The report also noted that many countries in Africa and South Asia are not making progress. Of the 75 countries with the highest rates of maternal and child deaths, 25 have made insufficient or no progress in reducing maternal deaths and 13 have made no progress in reducing child deaths. Global efforts to save the lives of women, newborn babies and young children are not moving fast enough, some countries are showing success looks like, but many other countries still have to learn the lessons of those successes.

SOURCE: HealthDay News, June 2012

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 Combat Superbug !

Real-time Gene Sequencing Used to Combat Superbug

Scientists have used genome sequencing technology to control an outbreak of the superbug MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus) in a study that could point to faster and more efficient treatment of a range of diseases. Much of this is being driven by whole genome sequencing, which has enabled scientists to identify the genetic markers for a range of afflictions. MRSA is a drug-resistant bacterial infection or superbug and major public health problem. The bug kills an estimated 19,000 people in the United States alone each year and even when the infection is successfully treated it can double the average length of a hospital stay and thereby increase healthcare costs. Investigators used samples from a 2009 MRSA outbreak in a hospital neo-natal intensive care ward to recreate and respond to it, as if in real time. They found that genome sequencing produced results in roughly 24 hours, using the latest technology from Illumina, gave much more detailed information. The researchers were able to identify the particular strain of MRSA causing the outbreak and which strains were not quickly enough to feed back into treatment and nip the outbreak in the bud faster than current clinical testing methods. Until recently, genetic analysis was more often done after outbreaks of MRSA and other infections to draw lessons for the future, but advances in sequencing have made the process much faster. Quick action is essential to control a suspected outbreak, but it is of equal importance to identify unrelated strains to prevent unnecessary ward closures and other disruptive control measures, said the author. The researchers say this kind of fast genome sequencing could eventually form the basis for a regional or national infection surveillance program designed to head off MRSA outbreaks before they happen. It could also be used for outbreaks of food-borne infections like salmonella or E.coli. Genome sequencing was used in an E.coli outbreak in Europe in 2011 but only in the latter stages to help identify the source. But there are a number of hurdles before the new technique becomes a routine part of monitoring in hospitals. Nevertheless, senior researcher said, the results demonstrate how advances in whole genome sequencing can provide essential information to help combat hospital outbreaks in clinically relevant turnaround times.

SOURCE: Reuters Health, June 2012

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New Products of SQUARE Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

  Product Xenole®
  Generic Name Naproxen Esomeprazole
  Strength 375 mg 20 mg,500 mg 20 mg
  Dosage form Tablet
  Therapeutic Category NSAID and its combination
  Product Proxivir®  
Generic Name Tenofovir Disoproxil
Strength 300 mg
Dosage form Tablet
Therapeutic Category Antivirals
  Product Fona Plus®
  Generic Name Adapalene Benzoyl Peroxide
  Strength 0.1% 2.5%
  Dosage form Gel
  Therapeutic Category Antiacne Preparations

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