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BUSINESS
June 23, 1989
Drug Reimbursements Approved: The federal Health Care Financing Administration has agreed to reimburse kidney dialysis centers when patients use Amgen Inc.'s new Epogen drug, retroactive to June 1. Epogen is the brand name for erythropoietin, a protein developed by the Thousand Oaks biotechnology company that is used to treat chronic anemia by stimulating production of red blood cells. Amgen said the U.S. will reimburse about 80% of a patient's treatment costs, with states covering the balance.
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BUSINESS
January 7, 1997 | LEO SMITH
A drug manufactured by Amgen of Thousand Oaks to aid the production of red blood cells has received approval from the federal Food and Drug Administration to be used prior to surgery. The drug, Procrit, is marketed by Ortho Biotech Inc., a unit of New Jersey-based Johnson & Johnson. Procrit is a genetically engineered version of a natural human hormone, erythropoietin, which stimulates bone marrow to produce red blood cells.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 14, 1991 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
For the first time, researchers have diagnosed fetal genetic disorders by taking blood samples from pregnant women, eliminating risk to the fetus. The new techniques rely on the fact that a very small number of fetal blood cells can make their way into a pregnant woman's bloodstream through leaks in the placenta. The cells are very rare in the mother's bloodstream, however.
NEWS
November 2, 1986 | --Compiled from Times staff and wire service reports
A virus may be the cause of Kawasaki syndrome, a mysterious disease that causes life-threatening heart abnormalities in children and is especially prevalent among youngsters of Japanese and Korean descent, according to Harvard Medical School researchers. In studies on the white blood cells of Kawasaki syndrome patients, the researchers have detected a key viral enzyme, called reverse transcriptase, which is normally not present in blood cells.
HEALTH
September 14, 1998
During this period, the structure of the fetus is completed to the extent that major abnormalities--or good health-- can be determined. MONTH FOUR Weeks 15-16: Amniocentesis can be performed to check for birth defects MONTH FIVE Weeks 16-18: Substantial cardiac defects can be determined. The fetus is fully formed, about 5 inches long. Fetal heart beats twice as fast as mother's. Weeks 18-20: Stem cells begin to occupy the fetal bone marrow. Fetus begins to move.
NEWS
September 3, 1987 | HARRY NELSON, Times Medical Writer
A genetically engineered hormone with the potential for revolutionizing the treatment of infections has passed its first human safety trial, UCLA and Harvard medical scientists said in a report published today. In experiments conducted in Los Angeles and Boston, the hormone was given to 16 AIDS patients suffering from a wide variety of viral, bacterial and fungal infections that typically afflict people with acquired immune deficiency syndrome.
HEALTH
July 28, 2008 | Karen Ravn, Special to The Times
When three cyclists got caught using the banned drug EPO this month, they were forced to take an abrupt detour from the Tour de France -- and perhaps from their riding careers. Of course, even as some ponder the psychological motivations driving elite athletes, others are left wondering about more basic issues, such as: What is EPO? EPO is the acronym for erythropoietin, a hormone that stimulates bone marrow to produce red blood cells. Everybody needs this hormone.
NEWS
May 31, 2011 | By Marissa Cevallos, HealthKey / For the Booster Shots blog
As more people in Europe fall ill from an especially dangerous strain of E. coli, the germ’s worst-case complication, hemolytic uremic syndrome, is grabbing headlines. The condition , which can shut down the kidneys, is potentially fatal—as evidenced by the mounting death toll. Though most strains of E. coli are harmless, this particular outbreak appears to be caused by a virulent strain known as enterohemorrhagic E. coli. It leads to hemolytic uremic syndrome in about 8% of those infected , often children.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 2, 2012 | By Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
Christina Blouvan-Cervantes had been battling aggressive leukemia when her blood count plummeted and she landed in the emergency room in Fresno. Her doctors told her a blood transfusion was her only hope. But her faith wouldn't allow her to receive one. So she turned to one of the only doctors who could possibly keep her alive: a committed atheist who views her belief system as wholly irrational. Dr. Michael Lill, head of the blood and marrow transplant program at Cedars-Sinai's Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute, is a last recourse for Jehovah's Witnesses with advanced leukemia.
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