Pharma

Universal anti-virus drug could cure polio, H1N1 and more (Morning Read)

Researchers at MIT have developed a universal anti-virus drug that targets RNA to identify and kill cells that have been infected by a virus. In lab tests on mice using human and animal cells, the treatment, called DRACO, was effective against 15 viruses including H1N1, polio and a stomach virus. The researchers say they think it could work much like antibiotics work to treat bacterial infections.

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All-purpose drug for viruses in the works. Researchers at MIT have developed a universal anti-virus drug that targets RNA to identify and kill cells that have been infected by a virus. In lab tests on mice using human and animal cells, the treatment, called DRACO, was effective against 15 viruses including H1N1, polio and a stomach virus. The researchers say they think it could work much like antibiotics work to treat bacterial infections.

The “super committee” and healthcare. As party leaders submit their picks for representatives to the super committee created to trim $1.2 trillion from the federal budget, Kaiser Health offers a Q&A on how the super committee could affect healthcare.

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Physician Targeting Using Real-time Data: How PurpleLab’s Alerts Can Help

By leveraging real-time data that offers unprecedented insights into physician behavior and patient outcomes, companies can gain a competitive advantage with prescribers. PurpleLab®, a healthcare analytics platform with one of the largest medical and pharmaceutical claims databases in the United States, recently announced the launch of Alerts which translates complex information into actionable insights, empowering companies to identify the right physicians to target, determine the most effective marketing strategies and ultimately improve patient care.

Stick-on patch for vitals. Electronic sensors embedded in a thin film and placed on a polyester backing could make monitoring patients’ vitals as easy as putting on a Band-Aid, thanks to University of Illinois researchers who are working on a stick-on patch for easy, comfortable and efficient monitoring.

A case for pagers. Now that 80 percent of physicians have smartphones, is it time to do away with the pager? In this piece from mobihealthnews, the president of the third-largest paging carrier in the country makes a case for pagers, arguing that smartphones are only as reliable as the WiFi network they’re operating on, and the use of simulcast technology in pagers makes them more reliable for critical messaging.

Push for safer scans. As the number of CT scans in hospital emergency departments has shot up over the past decade, it’s time to explore how to make the scans safer for patients. Duke University physicists have developed software to monitor how much radiation patients are exposed to from the scan in order to help doctors and surgeons make better decisions about how to get the information they need using the least amount of radiation possible.

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