New treatment for blood cancer developed

U of A research sets the stage for imminent human trials of B-cell lymphoma treatment

New treatment for blood cancer developedScientists have identified the mechanism of action behind a new type of precision cancer drug for blood cancers that is set for human trials, according to research published recently in Nature Communications. The University of Alberta research team led by Luc Berthiaume, cell biology professor in the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, spent four years working to…

New drug to treat muscular dystrophy based on U of A research

Created using synthetic DNA, viltolarsen is an excellent example of precision medicine

New drug to treat muscular dystrophy based on U of A researchA University of Alberta researcher’s past work has led to a new drug being approved for use in the United States to treat patients suffering from Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The drug, viltolarsen, was approved for use in Japan earlier this year and passed a significant hurdle in August when the U.S. Food and Drug…

Antiviral drug remdesivir offers second mechanism of attack

Understanding how the conditionally approved COVID-19 drug works is key to improving treatments, says U of A researcher

Antiviral drug remdesivir offers second mechanism of attackResearchers at the University of Alberta have discovered a novel, second mechanism of action by the antiviral drug remdesivir against SARS-CoV-2, according to findings published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The research team previously demonstrated how remdesivir inhibits the COVID-19 virus’s polymerase or replication machinery in a test tube. Matthias Götte, chair of medical microbiology and immunology…

National pharmacare will be very expensive and likely unnecessary

National pharmacare will be very expensive and likely unnecessaryAccording to reports, the Trudeau government may unveil a national pharmacare program in Wednesday’s throne speech in Ottawa. The program may be based on last year’s Hoskins’ report, which recommended an expensive top-down Medicare-style approach that would artificially set drugs prices, restrict patient choice and limit private alternatives. Not only would such a program drive…

Multiple factors will influence pricing for COVID-19 vaccine in Canada

Need to supply enough for herd immunity may push down the price per dose, according to U of A expert

Multiple factors will influence pricing for COVID-19 vaccine in CanadaConventional drug costing models are unlikely to apply when it comes to putting a price tag on a vaccine against COVID-19 for Canadians, according to health economist Christopher McCabe. McCabe is with the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, and also heads Alberta’s Institute of Health Economics. “When you have an infection that…

More than 100 toxic chemicals found in cannabis smoke

Typical joint contains nearly 2,600 chemicals, including some linked with cancer, genetic mutation and birth defects: U of A study

More than 100 toxic chemicals found in cannabis smokeUniversity of Alberta engineering researchers have characterized the potentially hazardous particles in cannabis smoke and have raised awareness about their potential health effects. “It's not out of line to say there's potential health risk in marijuana smoke, and there's not nearly enough research,” said Robert Nishida, a U of A post-doctoral fellow and co-lead on…

Why Canada’s gun ban won’t stop shootings

Addressing the more complex problems of narcotics, smuggling, and terrorism will yield more effective and durable results

Why Canada’s gun ban won’t stop shootingsBy Paz Gómez Research associate Frontier Centre for Public Policy A prohibition is the easiest way out of a policy problem. In enacting one to target gun violence, the federal government has admitted failure to find a solution that preserves both rights and lives. The deadliest mass shooting in Canadian history took place in Nova…

What can you do about the opioid crisis?

Much like first aid and CPR, bystander naloxone training is one of the best tools available to save lives, U of A experts say

What can you do about the opioid crisis?Who needs a free naloxone kit? Just about anyone who might come across an opioid overdose, according to a range of University of Alberta experts, including a pharmacist, the head of campus security, a student volunteer and a public health scientist. Alberta Health Services first made the kits and training available for free to the…

Gene therapy appraisals may limit new drugs in Canada

Canada's separate environmental protection oversight unnecessarily delays development and approval

Gene therapy appraisals may limit new drugs in CanadaBy Nigel Rawson and Mackenzie Moir The Fraser Institute The federal government plans to move ahead with major revisions in regulations governing the tribunal that sets ceiling prices for new prescription drugs in Canada. Revisions include: replacing countries with relatively higher drug prices with lower price countries in the international price-comparison analysis'; enforcing hard thresholds…

Similarities between COVID-19 deaths, severe rheumatic illnesses

U of A medical researchers recommend rheumatic drugs, exercise to boost immune-regulating ‘natural killer’ cells

Similarities between COVID-19 deaths, severe rheumatic illnessesRheumatologists at the University of Alberta are flagging similarities between the deaths of some COVID-19 patients and those with rheumatic illnesses. They are testing proven rheumatic treatments to see whether they help against the pandemic virus. A substantial proportion of COVID-19 patients admitted to intensive care die of pneumonia due to a cytokine storm, where…
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