Dr. Rath Health Foundation

Dr. Rath Health Foundation

Responsibility for a healthy world Dr. Rath Research Institute 100+ Studies Published In PubMed

Newsletter Archive

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March 5, 2008

Latest News Updates

Keep up-to-date on the latest health and politics news with our regular updates and analysis of the key stories from around the world.

Natural Health News

February 26, 2008

Magnesium linked to fewer gallstones
Increased intake of magnesium from dietary supplemental forms may decrease a man's risk of developing gallstones, suggests a new study from the US. The highest intake of magnesium was associated with a 28 per cent reduction in the risk of gallstones, according to the study with 42,705 male Americans published in The American Journal of Gastroenterology.
Read article at nutraingredients.com

For more natural health news, click here.

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

Pharma "Business with Disease" News

March 4, 2008

Court Allows Suit Against Drug Maker
WASHINGTON — A 4-to-4 vote on Monday left the Supreme Court unable to decide a pharmaceutical pre-emption case that was argued a week ago. The tie vote, with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. not participating, will permit a lawsuit to proceed against the Warner-Lambert Company, the maker of a diabetes drug, Rezulin. The plaintiffs are 27 diabetes patients from Michigan who suffered liver damage while taking the drug.
Read article in the New York Times (USA)

March 1, 2008

Malaria drug off market over side-effect fears
An anti-malarial drug which was once lauded as offering new hope for Africa has been withdrawn by the British manufacturer because of its side-effects. GlaxoSmithKline's announcement that it was taking Lapdap off the market and recalling it from pharmacies in Kenya came more than three years after the World Health Organisation warned it could cause severe anaemia in children, which would require a blood transfusion.
Read article in The Guardian (UK)

February 27, 2008

Drugs used for cancer-associated anemia linked with increased risk of blood clots, death
Treating anemia with a class of drugs known as erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) is associated with an increased risk of venous thromboembolism (blood clots in the deep veins of the legs or in the lungs) and death among patients with cancer, according to an article in the February 27 issue of JAMA.
Read article at physorg.com

February 27, 2008

Drug giants warned: Tell the truth on medicines
After antidepressant treatments are discredited, fears grow that other products may be ineffective
The pharmaceutical industry came under assault from senior figures in medical research yesterday over its practice of withholding information to protect profits, exposing patients to drugs which could be useless or harmful. Experts criticised the stranglehold exerted by multinational companies over clinical trials, which has led to biased results, under-reporting of negative findings and selective publication driven by the market, which was worth £10.1bn in the UK in 2006, amounting to 11 per cent of total NHS costs. The latest attack was triggered yesterday by an analysis of published and unpublished trials of modern antidepressants, including Prozac and Seroxat, showing they offer no clinically significant improvement over placebos (dummy pills) in most patients.
Read article in the Independent (UK) 

February 26, 2008

Journal Publications Are Nothing But Marketing
But you probably knew that already. In any event, many big drugmakers view the publication of clinical trials primarily as a marketing tool, not just a way to get the word out to docs about meaningful findings. That’s the result of a recent survey by Best Practices, which queried scientific directors at 14 big drugmakers - Glaxo, Pfizer, Biogen, Human Genome Sciences, Merck, Bristol-Myers Squibb, NPS, Abbott Labs, Shire, Amgne, Genentech, Lilly, AstraZeneca and Vertex Pharmaceuticals.
Read article at pharmalot.com

February 26, 2008

HRT could increase breast cancer risk
Hormone replacement therapy could increase the risk of developing early signs of breast cancer after only one year, a study shows.
Read article in the Daily Telegraph (UK)

February 26, 2008

Prozac, used by 40m people, does not work say scientists
Analysis of unseen trials and other data concludes it is no better than placebo
Prozac, the bestselling antidepressant taken by 40 million people worldwide, does not work and nor do similar drugs in the same class, according to a major review released today. The study examined all available data on the drugs, including results from clinical trials that the manufacturers chose not to publish at the time. The trials compared the effect on patients taking the drugs with those given a placebo or sugar pill. When all the data was pulled together, it appeared that patients had improved - but those on placebo improved just as much as those on the drugs.
Read article in the Guardian (UK)

February 26, 2008

Court Considers Protecting Drug Makers From Lawsuits
WASHINGTON — Less than a week after issuing a sweeping ruling that bars most lawsuits against medical device makers, the Supreme Court heard arguments Monday in the first of two cases that could determine whether drug makers receive similar protection.
Read article in the New York Times (USA)
Comment: Needless to say, the ruling that is being sought here is a last desperate attempt to avert the imminent collapse of the pharmaceutical investment business with patented drugs. Whatever the Supreme Court eventually rules in these cases, the truth about the pharmaceutical industry – including its toxic chemotherapy and antiretroviral drugs - will remain unchanged: While pretending to deliver health to the world, its entire existence is based on promoting diseases as multi-billion dollar markets for patented drugs.

February 25, 2008

Wyeth, Pfizer Ordered to Pay $2.75 Million Over Drugs
Hormone-replacement drugs made by Wyeth and a Pfizer Inc. unit caused an Arkansas woman's breast cancer and she deserves at least $2.75 million in damages, jurors ruled in the companies' first loss in federal court. Jurors in Little Rock, Arkansas, deliberated 12 hours over two days before finding the combination of Wyeth's Premarin and Pharmacia & Upjohn's Provera menopause drugs helped cause Donna Scroggin's cancer. The former factory worker had a double mastectomy after taking hormone-replacement drugs for about 10 years.
Read article at bloomberg.com

For more pharma “business with disease” news, click here.

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

GMO News

March 3, 2008

Guardian GM coverage “everything biotech companies could want”
The Soil Association’s policy director, Peter Melchett, has criticized The Guardian for using a stereotypical portrayal of opponents of GM as “activists” and “vandals”. He was responding to an aticle in The Guardian on February 16 which reported that GM crop locations may be hidden from the public because of “fears that anti-GM campaigners are winning the battle over the controversial technology”. In a letter to the newspaper, Melchett, a former head of Greenpeace UK, said The Guardian’s coverage characterised two sides of the battle “exactly as pro-GM campaigners would wish”.
Read article at Natural Products online (UK)

February 27, 2008

Non-GM Breakthroughs Leave GM Behind
Non-GM breakthroughs keep coming thick and fast for problems that GM proponents claim require GM, but GM solutions, if any, are years away
Does the mention of allergen-free peanut, salt-resistant wheat, beta-carotene rich sweet potato, and virus-resistant cassava make you think of GM? If so, you’ve missed the great unpublished story of 2007 – all the non-GM answers to precisely the problems (drought-resistance, salt-resistance, biofortification, etc.) that proponents claim only GM can solve.
Read press release on the Institute of Science in Society (ISIS) website (UK)

Other Health-related News

February 29, 2008

U.S. Imprisons One in 100 Adults, Report Finds
For the first time in the nation’s history, more than one in 100 American adults are behind bars, according to a new report. Nationwide, the prison population grew by 25,000 last year, bringing it to almost 1.6 million, after three decades of growth that has seen the prison population nearly triple. Another 723,000 people are in local jails. The number of American adults is about 230 million, meaning that one in every 99.1 adults is behind bars.
Read article in the New York Times (USA)
Comment: Results emerging from studies at the cutting edge of the debate on crime and punishment increasingly suggest that criminal behavior may be attributable at least in part to nutritional deficiencies. To learn more, click here.

February 28, 2008

Vanadium deemed unsafe in Europe
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has rejected vanadium as an ingredient that can safely be used in foods and food supplements because of overexposure fears to the general population.
Read article at nutraingredients.com
Comment: Back in 2002, when the EU’s Food Supplements Directive was being passed by the European Parliament, we were accused of scaremongering when we said that it would lead to some supplements and supplement ingredients being banned completely. This latest development proves that we were right all along.

For more health-related news, click here.

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

Political News

February 29, 2008

Zuma cheated taxman, says State
ANC President Jacob Zuma should not be allowed to quash "important" evidence implicating him in corruption, racketeering and multimillion-rand tax fraud, the state says. The National Prosecuting Authority argues that one reason why he should not be allowed to do so are the "links" it says the disputed evidence shows between Zuma's former financial adviser and convicted fraudster, Schabir Shaik, and "political office-bearers".
Read article on the Independent Online website (South Africa)

February 27, 2008

Blair 'wrong man' for EU president
 Tony Blair is the “wrong man” to become president of the EU, says one of Europe's heavyweight political figures. Once the Lisbon treaty is fully ratified on 1 January, the post is to replace the EU’s current rotating presidency. Though he is yet to declare himself a candidate, Blair has been widely touted for the job, with notable backing from French president Nicolas Sarkozy. Jean-Claude Juncker, the veteran EU-friendly Luxembourg premier, is another possible candidate. However, Viscount Etienne Davignon, a former European commission vice president, said the former Labour party leader “lacks the legitimacy” for the prestigious post. He said: “There are very significant obstacles to Blair becoming EU president.
Read article at theparliament.com

February 27, 2008

MEPs vote to keep their expenses scams secret
Senior members of the European Parliament turned their fire on a whistle-blower for disclosing the existence of a confidential report into widespread misuse of expenses yesterday as they voted for it to stay secret. Chris Davies, a Liberal Democrat who broke ranks to reveal that an internal auditor had found a number of scams being operated by MEPs, was attacked for misusing private information and for rarely turning up to committee meetings. MEPs on the Budget Control Committee voted by 21 to 14 not to publish the report, with the support of the two main groups in Parliament, the European People’s Party, which includes the Conservatives, and the Socialists, including Labour.
Read article in The Times (UK)
Comment: This disgraceful development reflects everything that is wrong with the European Union and, as if one was even needed, is yet another reason to oppose the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty.

For more political news, visit the news pages on the website of the International Alliance for Health, Peace and Social Justice, and the news page on the European Referendum Initiative website.

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