CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 28, 2012 |
Dr. R. Palmer Beasley, an epidemiologist whose pivotal research on hepatitis B in Taiwan first linked the virus to liver cancer, died Saturday of pancreatic cancer at his home in Houston. He was 76. His death was announced by the University of Texas Health Science Center School of Public Health in Houston, where he had been dean from 1987 to 2005. Beasley made his mark in the 1970s with a series of studies that proved the cancer link and also discovered how Asian children were infected with hepatitis B during childbirth by their mothers who were carriers.
August 21, 2012 |
I consider myself to be a fortunate person. I have a good education, a great job and excellent health insurance. I am a baby boomer who has aged reasonably well and can look forward to a fairly comfortable retirement. I am also fortunate because I was diagnosed with hepatitis C by a proactive and knowledgeable doctor in the late 1990s and had the opportunity to be treated and cured. The odds are that if I had not been diagnosed and treated, I would be on a liver transplant list right now, have liver cancer or even be dead from this disease.
July 20, 2012 |
Silymarin, an extract of milk thistle widely used around the world for treating liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus, provides no more benefit than a placebo, researchers reported this week. Some estimates are that as many as a third of the estimated 3.2 million Americans with hepatitis C -- as well as many more millions around the world -- are consuming the drug in an effort to alleviate their symptoms. The new research by a team headed by Dr. Michael W. Fried of the University of North Carolina School of Medicine suggests that they are simply wasting their money.
June 12, 2012 |
More than a quarter of L.A.'s homeless adults are infected with the hepatitis C virus, and nearly half of them don't know it, UCLA researchers reported this week. Almost none of them have been treated for the infection, suggesting that the public health system could face a major financial burden as their infections progress to cirrhosis of the liver and end-stage liver disease. The hepatitis C virus, known as HCV, represents a potentially lethal infection. It is transmitted through the blood, primarily by needles used for injecting drugs.
May 6, 2012
Re "Hepatitis a new worry for baby boomers," May 2 In the late 1960s I was a Peace Corps volunteer teaching school in Uganda. I became ill and required blood transfusions. Fast forward 30 years and I'm donating my own blood for surgery. Imagine my surprise when the Red Cross informed me that I had hepatitis C, something I had never heard of. I had contracted it from those long-ago transfusions. Once my initial panic subsided, I was fortunate to find an excellent heptologist who eventually persuaded me to undergo treatment.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 2, 2012 |
The number of baby boomers dying from a "silent epidemic" of hepatitis C infections is increasing so rapidly that federal officials are planning a new nationwide push for widespread testing. Three in four of the estimated 3.2 million people who have chronic hepatitis C - and a similar proportion of those who die from the disease - are baby boomers. Deaths from the virus nearly doubled between 1999 and 2007 to more than 15,000, according to a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study.
April 27, 2012 |
The Food and Drug Administration warned Friday that doctors should not prescribe and patients should not use the hepatitis C drug Victrelis (boceprevir) and the anti-HIV drug ritonavir at the same time because such use reduces the effectiveness of both drugs. Patients already using the two drugs simultaneously should not stop taking them without consulting their doctor, however, the agency cautioned. Ritonavir, a protease inhibitor, is commonly used to boost the effectiveness of other protease inhibitors and is found in Reyataz (atazanavir/ritonavir)
February 21, 2012 |
Hepatitis C mortality rates surpassed HIV mortality rates in the United States in 2007, researchers said Monday. In a study in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine ( abstract here ), U.S. Centers for Disease Control researchers analyzed causes of death on more than 21.8 million U.S. death certificates filed between 1999 and 2007. Rates of death related to hepatitis C, a viral infection that causes chronic liver disease, rose at an average rate of .18 deaths per 100,000 persons per year.
January 18, 2012 |
A major advance in treating hepatitis C appears to be on the horizon. Researchers reported Wednesday that combining two antiviral medications was effective in stopping the infection in some patients who were not helped by the traditional treatment. Progress in fighting hepatitis C infection is of high importance because millions of Americans have the virus. However, the standard treatment with the medication interferon, while effective in many people, is linked to severe side effects.
November 21, 2011
Gilead Sciences Inc struck a deal to buy biotechnology company Pharmasset Inc for about $11 billion in a huge bet to diversify its portfolio with new hepatitis C treatments. Gilead, the world's largest maker of HIV drugs, will pay $137 per share for each Pharmasset share, an 89% premium to Pharmasset's Friday closing price. Pharmasset has been one of the hottest biotech stocks in the last year based on the potential of its experimental hepatitis C medicines to create a treatment regimen for the liver disease without commercially manufactured interferons.