A fi sau a nu fi...liber

Personal growth ,life-coaching,positive and transpersonal psychology , education for all,INTEGRATIVE MEDICINE. HAPPINESS, WELL-BEING,WISDOM, HARMONY, COMMITMENT TO LIFE MISSION AND VALUES


Preventing cancer

Winning the War on Cancer

by Lindsay B. Wolsey, MH
December 2006

Dr. Christopher wrote in the Cell Deterioration Newsletter “For a number of years now, it has been dangerous to even say the word cancer from the podium for fear of being arrested for prescribing medicine, when one is only talking about cancer. This is something that has been very sad--that we have lost our freedom of speech!” Dr. Christopher has been gone for over 20 years, and unfortunately not much has changed when it comes to discussing cancer. For years now, alternative practitioners have been cautioned to stay quiet when it comes to cancer. Even naturopaths (when they are allowed to practice) have to send all cancer patients to oncologists. And we see in the news all the time stories about clinics being shut down, practitioners going to jail for daring to help people with cancer.

Fortunately, there is one thing that we have going for us in this country. It is called the First Amendment. I'm not a doctor, I don't see patients, I don't diagnose disease and I don't prescribe medications. I am a Master Herbalist, and I can pass on valuable information that many people have discovered through the years to save their lives.


When it comes to fighting cancer, the absolute, number one weapon is diet. We have seen time and time again the amazing results that people experience when they radically change their diet. This means no Coke, no Twinkies, no Steak. This means you have distilled water, whole grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. And heavier on the fresh, vegetables and fruits than the whole grains. When you are dealing with something serious like cancer, eating a mainly raw food diet wouldn't be a bad idea. You need those enzymes to repair your cells. Raw fruits and vegetables offer powerful protection against cancer. Did you know that lung cancer rates, even among smokers, are significantly lower (20%) in countries that have a high vegetable consumption? And drink juice. Wheatgrass juice, carrot juice, orange juice, apple juice-lots and lots and lots of juice. If you were considering doing the Incurables program, it is full of lots and lots of juice.

I have said it before, and I will say it again, many, many times, read Eat to Live by Joel Furhman. If you are a student of the School of Natural Healing, it comes in your coursework. The consumption of animal products is directly linked to multiple types of cancer. Men who eat a lot of meat, poultry, and dairy products are the most likely candidates for prostate cancer. A study from Germany found that colon and rectal cancer risk dropped by 50% for vegetarians. Vegetables and fruits protect against all types of cancer if consumed in high enough quantities.

Cancers linked to meat and dairy:
Bladder Cancer
Brain Cancer
Breast Cancer
Colon Cancer
Endometrial Cancer
Intestinal Cancer
Kidney Cancer
Lung Cancer
Oralpharyngeal Cancer
Ovarian Cancer
Pancreatic Cancer
Prostate Cancer
Skin Cancer
Stomach Cancer

Are we seeing a pattern here? When we say no meat and no dairy, we mean it. Even ice cream. To quote Dr. Fuhrman, “For humans, too much animal food is toxic.” We have seen this time and again-people change their diets, they save their lives. There is a caveat, though. You have to continue eating this way. Tragically, we have had several cases of students who had miracles, recovered from various cancers, went back to eating Twinkies and drinking Cokes, and they died. This has even happened to some of our Master Herbalist Graduates-students who know better. Sandra Ellis, Master Herbalist and one of our instructors, relates one of these instances as an example at our Master Herbalist Seminar. She says that when she visited this Graduate, she saw empty potato chip bags, candy wrappers, cans of Coke, and a nice layer of dust on the Norwalk juicer. Her cancer came back with a vengeance, and it was only a few months later that she died. You can't go back to eating junk.

When I look at what the doctors had my father-in-law eating during Chemotherapy, I am still amazed he survived. They told him to add Boost to ice cream and milk and have milk shakes daily. This man still will not drink a fruit smoothie. How he ever made it through treatment, I will never know.


A study done in Norway reported that women who exercise regularly reduce their risk of developing breast cancer by 62 percent. Let's face it, we all know that exercise is important, and yet we still put it off. But if it could drop your cancer risk by up to 62 percent, isn't it worth it to make time to exercise?


Depending on the type of cancer you were dealing with, you might add a formula that would cleanse a certain area of the body. But the foundation would be the same-Dr. Christopher's Extended Herbal Cleanse with the Lower Bowel, Kidney Formula, Liver/Gallbladder Formula, and the Blood Stream Cleansing formula. Unlike the standard Extended Cleanse, however, you would not wait a few weeks before adding the next formula to the regime. You would take them all from the beginning. You would also want to take a lot of Vitalerbs.

A very controversial cancer tool is Apricot Kernels-a natural source of B17/Laetrile. David Christopher once played a joke on me, and tricked me into eating one. Oh, it was the nastiest thing I think I've ever eaten! I have since learned to be leary of things that David hands me to try. But David faithfully eats Apricot Kernels on a regular basis. I believe the amount most people try to eat in a day is seven kernels. The record is 60. If you are going to try this, just look at it as you are eating these kernels as a snack, not as an alternative to chemotherapy. Otherwise, they might not be able to sell them to you! I could go into the specifics of how Apricot Kernels work, but I think I'll leave that for David at the Master Herbalist Seminar.


One of the best books for a cancer patient to read is A Cancer Battle Plan by Anne Frahm. Another great book is Triumph Over Cancer by Agi Lidle. Her book gives great details on using The Cold Sheet Treatment and dietary changes to help fight cancer. And of course Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman. It was quite a surprise to me when I was at a bookstore the other day, to not find Eat to Live in the Health Section. They had every other type of book imaginable, including one about how to lose weight while eating junk food, but not the one book that could be most helpful.

New research -herbal

Herbal Rhodiola Extract Found to Increase Lifespan

Wednesday, January 30, 2008 by: Leslee Dru Browning

(NewsTarget) Rhodiola rosea is now, according to recent research, becoming more widely accepted in the U.S. as a powerful anti-aging, anti-stress formula. In today's culture with stress coming from every direction, this comes as good news and a possible natural stress-relief treatment.

The herbal extract of a yellow-flowered mountain plant indigenous to the Arctic regions of Europe and Asia increased the lifespan of fruit fly populations, according to a University of California, Irvine study.

Flies that ate a diet rich with Rhodiola rosea, an herbal supplement long used for its purported stress-relief effects, lived an average of 10 percent longer than fly groups that didn't eat the herb. Study results appear in the online education news release from the University of California, Irvine

"Although this study does not present clinical evidence that Rhodiola can extend human life, the finding that it does extend the lifespan of a model organism, combined with its known health benefits in humans, make this herb a promising candidate for further anti-aging research," said Mahtab Jafari, a professor of pharmaceutical sciences and study leader. "Our results reveal that Rhodiola is worthy of continued study, and we are now investigating why this herb works to increase lifespan."

In their study, the UC Irvine researchers fed adult fruit fly populations diets supplemented at different dose levels with four herbs known for their anti-aging properties. The herbs were mixed into a yeast paste, which adult flies ate for the duration of their lives. Three of the herbs – known by their Chinese names as Lu Duo Wei, Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang and San Zhi Pian – had no effect on fruit fly longevity, while Rhodiola was found to significantly reduce mortality. On average, Rhodiola increased survival for 3.5 days in males and 3.2 days in females.

Rhodiola rosea, also known as the golden root, grows in cold climates at high altitudes and has been used by Scandinavians and Russians for centuries for its anti-stress qualities. The herb is thought to have anti-oxidative properties and has been widely studied.

Soviet researchers have been studying Rhodiola since the 1940s on athletes and cosmonauts, finding that the herb boosts the body's response to stress. And earlier this year, a Nordic Journal of Psychiatry study on people with mild-to-moderate depression showed that patients taking a Rhodiola extract called SHR-5 reported fewer symptoms of depression than did those who took a placebo.

Jafari said she is evaluating the molecular mechanism of Rhodiola by measuring its impact on energy metabolism, oxidative stress and anti-oxidant defenses in fruit flies. She is also beginning studies in mice and in mouse and human cell cultures. These latter studies should help understand the benefits of Rhodiola seen in human trials.

Past Herbal Uses of Rhodiola Rosea as a Treatment for Depression by Herbalist

Rhodiola rosea is classified as an adaptogen herb, which means it increase the body's ability to cope with internal and external stress factors, and normalize the functions of the organism. Adaptogen herbs help maintain the stable internal environment inside the organism known as homeostasis.

Russia has used Rhodiola rosea for years to enhance mental and physical performance. It has been widely used by Russian athletes and cosmonauts to increase energy. In addition, Russian medicine has also traditionally given Rhodiola rosea to its soldiers, sportsmen and aging political leaders as an effective anti-aging medicine. Rhodiola rosea helped them to improve cognitive functions and physical performance.

Rhodiola rosea also has extraordinary pharmacological properties as an anti-depressive agent. The anti-depressive and anti-stress activity of Rhodiola rosea is higher than that of St. John's Wort, Ginkgo biloba and Panax Ginseng.

In another clinical trial, 150 individuals suffering from depression took Rhodiola rosea extracts for a period of one month. At the end of that period, two-thirds of them had full remission of clinical manifestations of depression, and had become more active and more sociable. Daytime weakness and general weakness disappeared.

Rhodiola rosea has also been recommended for fatigue, catarrhal seasonal diseases, along with mental performance and to improve endurance. It increases bodily resistance to physical and mental overloads, and negative environmental effects.

Rhodiola is cardio-protective, normalizing the heart rate immediately after intense exercise. It improves the nervous system and mental functions such as memory, by increasing blood-supply to the muscles and brain, and it also increases protein synthesis.

Russian research has emphasized that Rhodiola rosea extracts have rejuvenative properties due to their ability to raise the efficiency of the intra-cell DNA repair mechanisms.


University of California - Irvine
Jeffrey Felgner, Irvin Bussel, Anthony Hutchili, Behnood Khodayari, Michael Rose and Laurence Mueller of UC Irvine participated in the study. Sun Ten Inc. provided the herbs.

RHODIOLA ROSEA (Russian Rhodiola, Golden root)
Anti-Aging Medicine of 21st Century

About the author
Leslee Dru Browning is a 6th generation Medical Herbalist & Nutritionist from the ancestral line of Patty Bartlett Sessions; Pioneer Mid-Wife & Herbalist. Leslee practiced Medical Herbalism and Nutritional Healing for over 25 years and specialized in Cancer Wellness along with Chronic Illness. She now devotes her career to teaching people, through her writing, about Natural Healing from An Herbal Perspective.

Natural care for your healthy teeth

Natural Tooth Cure for Curing Cavities and Preventing Root Canals

Wednesday, January 30, 2008 by: Rami Nagel

(NewsTarget) It is not true that conventional dental treatments and fluoride are the only ways to heal your teeth from cavities. When struck with the diagnoses of a dental cavity, most people feel totally helpless or powerless to do anything about it themselves. The common belief about tooth decay is that once you have a cavity, the tooth cavity cannot heal or reverse. The only solution seems to be to rush off to the dentist and have a synthetic material placed in your teeth to cover the breached tooth structure.

No longer should we continue to accept dental surgery or the dangerous chemical, fluoride, as our only hope and solution for tooth decay. There is now a book that describes another way to heal teeth. Cure Tooth Decay: Heal And Prevent Cavities With Nutrition by Ramiel Nagel – available for purchase at (www.curetoothdecay.com) – is a triumph in the face of the medical dogma that believes in disease and suffering. Let me tell you what really causes tooth decay so that you can be empowered to fight it, prevent it, and succeed at doing so.

People go to dentists for regular check-ups, or because they have tooth pain or gum swelling. The dentist takes x-rays and then, many times, informs you of the dreadful news – you have a cavity. But you need not worry. For a few hundred dollars, the newest "natural" filling material can be placed in your mouth and the problem is solved.

Or is it?

I began investigating tooth decay, and health in general, because my own daughter was afflicted with tooth decay at the age of one. Children's tooth decay is commonly referred to as "Baby Bottle Mouth" because it is supposed to happen when children drink fruit juices from bottles. My daughter did not eat sweets frequently, never had fruit juice, was breastfed regularly, and has almost never eaten any type of processed foods (which are known to be harmful and decay promoting).

I knew that the current theory was wrong because it did not explain my daughter's tooth decay. I had to find an answer because unlike with adults, young children cannot undergo conventional dental treatments -- they cannot sit still, and do not usually like things being forced into their mouths. As a result, a typical dental treatment for a young child is surgery with full anesthesia, or other unpleasant things. As I now understand it, applying these treatments to young children is, from a scientific or medical standpoint, not the best treatment; it's merely a convenient and haphazardly prescribed treatment that is costly in many ways.

To an important degree, my work is based on the research of the world's greatest dentist, Weston A. Price, as well as another top dentist, Melvin Page, who also used his research and even took it further. To say that Weston Price was well respected in the peak of his career, from the early 1900's to his death in 1948, is an understatement. He was the chairman of the Research Section of the National Dental Association (1914-1923), the forerunner to the American Dental Association.

Weston Price was widely respected in his time, and frequently published in many dental journals, including several articles in the Journal of the American Dental Association.

Rather than seek to determine why modern society had unhealthy teeth, Weston Price traveled the world to find out why Indigenous people have healthy teeth. In observing the superb health of Indigenous groups in the 1930's, Dr. Price made a poignant discovery. He realized that something fundamental was, and is, radically wrong with the way we live. And as a result, we have lost our pristine state of health. Dr. Price gave us an outline for a tooth decay healing protocol that, under precise and careful conditions, was over 95% percent effective at healing decay without dental surgery. In other words, cavities can be healed with a special type of nutrition.

What is Dental Surgery?

When a dentist finds a small hole in your tooth, or you feel pain due to a hole in your tooth, the dentist's job is to fix this hole. The methodology is to drill a bigger hole in your mouth, and then to fill the hole with a synthetic material. A dentist is a DDS, a doctor of dental surgery. Dental surgery only treats the symptoms of tooth decay, pain, and/or a hole in your tooth. It never addresses the cause, and because of this, people generally loose many of their teeth over time.

In an extensive study of over 15,000 people, the Centers for Disease Control published some statistics regarding tooth decay that should be cause for alarm for most people. Here is a summary: the older you get, more of your teeth become effected by decay. That's why old people have dentures (fake teeth) and most young people do not...yet.

On average, people ages 16-19 have 11.6% of all teeth affected by decay at one time. This steadily increases, and by the time adults are over age 60, more than half of their teeth (62.36%) have been affected by decay and a total of 93.1% of all people over the age of 60 have had teeth affected by tooth decay.

If brushing, flossing, massive fluoridation campaigns, and dental surgery were effective in preventing tooth decay, it would not get worse over time. It would stay the same, or get better. This is what I refer to as an unscientifically sound practice. If we are to examine the effects of our dental care as a society, the statistics clearly show it is a failure, as tooth decay becomes worse and worse over time. Either Nature is fundamentally flawed and has doomed us to a life that includes decaying teeth, or humans are flawed in understanding and utilizing Nature.

The Current Tooth Decay Theory is Wrong

The current theory of tooth decay according to the American Dental Association:

"[Tooth decay] occurs when foods containing carbohydrates (sugars and starches) such as milk, pop, raisins, cakes or candy are frequently left on the teeth. Bacteria that live in the mouth thrive on these foods, producing acids as a result. Over a period of time, these acids destroy tooth enamel, resulting in tooth decay."

There are several problems with this theory.

#1) No matter how much you brush, it is impossible to keep your mouth free of bacteria -- supposedly we breathe in over 14,000 germs per hour.

#2) Some groups of Indigenous people who had fermentable carbohydrates stuck on their teeth all of the time, without any brushing or flossing, were mostly or entirely free of tooth decay.

#3) Bacteria do not eat processed sugars because of the lack of nutrients found in them. In fact, sugars are processed not only to prevent spoilage, but also to prevent consumption by bacteria. It does not make sense that these nutrient-void sugars miraculously become food for bacteria once in your mouth.

#4) Bacteria does not eat processed flour for the same reason. Processed flours are designed to prevent spoilage, and thus the minerals (bacteria food) are removed. Many times, flours are even further treated to prevent bacteria from eating them.

#5) Foods that bacteria like to eat include milk, vegetables, meat, fish, and fruit; these are not commonly attributed with being the causes of tooth decay.

#6) The large CDC survey described above shows that despite all of our prevention efforts, on average about 90% of our population has had tooth decay at least one time. This means that even in the best case, our preventative methods only work for 10% of the people. Of course, the typical answer to this is that those 90% of the people did not get regular dental visits, did not use fluoride, and did not brush their teeth often enough. Unfortunately, this is an example of blaming the victim, rather than looking at the larger problem. People have not been given an honest evaluation of what really causes tooth decay, and so have not been empowered to act to stop it.

What Really Causes Tooth Decay

After reading and studying the work of Weston Price, late Harvard Professor Earnest Hooten said we need to consider the habits and ways of the Indigenous people, because "It is store food that has given us store teeth."

Time and time again, Dr. Price documented the tragic plight of Indigenous people coming into contact with modern industrialization. Many of these groups enjoyed generation after generation of life without significant tooth decay. But after the arrival of industry and commerce, and with them modern foods, their teeth began to degenerate very rapidly.

Published data from food surveys done by the United States Department of Agriculture show that a significant portion of the population is under nourished. It should not be surprising why.

We eat junk food, processed food, denatured food, and chemically-laden foods. These foods lack the special fat-soluble vitamins which Indigenous people would, at times, go great lengths to obtain.

That means if you want to be healthy, you need to take time and effort to pay attention to what you eat. You cannot just go to the local convenience store and expect that a packaged food product is designed to give you optimal health. It is important to reflect upon the long term consequences of each and every bite of processed and denatured food you eat.

Through blood tests, Dentist Melvin Page pinpointed the cause of tooth decay in modern people. When our blood chemistry is out of balance, primarily from the consumption of processed foods (especially sugars), the ratio of calcium and phosphorus in our blood deviates from normal. When this happens, minerals are pulled from the bones causing tooth and other bone loss. So, sugar causes tooth decay because it depletes nutrients from the body, not because bacteria eat it and produce acid. In order to restore the ratio of calcium and phosphorus in our blood, and to enable minerals to bond unto our teeth, it is usually not sufficient just to avoid eating too much sweet or processed foods. One must also eat health building foods, containing potent amounts of minerals and vitamins to create a chain reaction that will build glassy hard tooth structure in place of decayed tooth structure.

Freedom From Tooth Decay

This is just an introduction to how you can be free of tooth decay, and avoid those pesky root canals. Our teeth can rebuild themselves, and cover themselves over with a hard and glassy layer, provided we give ourselves the right kind of nutrition.

And what is the right kind of nutrition?

First, it is fat-soluble vitamins that are present in plant and animal foods raised only in pristine harmony with nature. Fat-soluble vitamins are vitamins A, D, E, and K from whole food sources. Grass-fed animal foods, wild fish and shellfish (particularly the organs) are home to these vitamins. You may know from nature videos that the king of the jungle prefers the organs over the flesh meat. And that great powerful bears sometimes only eat the head, or just the brain of the salmon for nourishment, leaving the rest for other animals. This is because the organs contain the vitamins that make our bodies fit for life.

Fat-soluble vitamin E is stored in the germ of grains from wheat, rye, barley and oats. But when we process these grains, the vitamin quickly oxidizes and the grains become rancid. Because store food is improperly processed, it is nearly impossible to find any product made with these grains that contains the whole vitamin. Even in organic varieties, the most essential nutrients are lost because they are improperly prepared, and this results in great harm to our health and to that of our children.

We have tooth decay today because our food supply is so poor that many foods are lacking in the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.

So, to begin to obtain freedom from tooth decay, your food sources must include the fat-soluble vitamins. If you eat grains, like wheat and corn, they must be freshly ground. Grains usually need to be fermented to release trapped nutrients and make them digestible.

I used to eat what I thought was a healthy diet: organic fruits and vegetables, organic grains, and organic fish and chicken. Even still, I developed tooth decay because my diet did not contain enough fat-soluble vitamins, and it did not contain enough bio-available minerals.

For animal food eaters, we need to eat grass-fed raw milk, butter, cream and cheese made from cows that eat the rapidly-growing grass of the spring and summer. Also, we need to eat moderate amounts, with almost every meal, of at least some of the organs of land and/or sea animals, or truly free-ranging chicken eggs.

The second mistake that can contribute to tooth decay in many people is eating too many sweet foods. Yes, natural sweets do not affect the blood sugar level as adversely as processed sweets; because of this they can easily promote tooth decay. If you are prone to tooth decay, I suggest paying attention to the amount of sweet foods in your daily diet, including the use of carrots, bananas, dates, honey, maple syrup, and any other type of fruit. Any sweet food can produce a change in our blood sugar, which can contribute to minerals being pulled from our bones.

Living Without Tooth Decay

I wrote an entire book on how to live without tooth decay and how to heal your teeth with good nutrition. I cannot give you all the answers in an article, but I can let you know that there is a new way to promoting healthy teeth.

I was diagnosed with three cavities two and a half years ago. But through regulating my diet, and eating special foods, my teeth have become stronger and the cavities have halted. My daughter has lived with her tooth decay without the need for dental surgery for close to three years now. With enhanced nutrition her mood has improved, and her teeth have protected themselves internally from infection; this is called arrested decay. For me it is really priceless to be able to avoid Novocain shots, radiation exposure from x-rays and having holes drilled in my teeth. And for my daughter, the savings for me as a parent, are really beyond words and explanation; I feel eternally grateful.

In our society we have deep and unfelt beliefs in disease and suffering. We believe that "life is suffering." Or some say that "to be human is to be in a state of sin." Many of us are not totally conscious of these beliefs, or others like them, so we inadvertently look past answers staring us blatantly in the face. We promote systems such as dental surgery and water fluoridation, which are many times not necessary given the light of knowledge showing us that our teeth are not designed to decay.

You can minimize your tooth decay, prevent it entirely, and even heal tooth decay once a cavity has formed, if you make good choices for yourself based on the knowledge of the lifestyle led by decay-free Indigenous people.

We continue to fool ourselves, saying that diseases are not curable. But it is time to move away from these limiting beliefs. The cause of tooth decay is known, and knowable. From this knowledge, let us become empowered to take more responsibility for our dental health.

You can learn how to live without tooth decay. You can heal and prevent cavities. To purchase a digital or print copy of Cure Tooth Decay, visit (www.curetoothdecay.com)

About the author
Rami Nagel is the author of "Cure Tooth Decay: Heal And Prevent Cavities With Nutrition," which teaches readers how to reclaim their dental health. Learn the real cause and cure for cavities and root canals at: www.curetoothdecay.com
Rami is a father who cares about the way we affect each other, our children, and our planet through our lifestyle choices. His health background is in hands-on energy healing, Hatha & Bhakti yoga and the Pathwork.
Rami is author of several health resources:
www.healingourchildren.net - Learn the Cause and Prevention of the Diseases of Pregnancy and Childhood
www.preconceptionhealth.org - A Program for Preconception Health based on Indigenous Wisdom
www.curetoothdecay.com - Heal and Prevent Cavities with Nutrition!
www.yourreturn.org - The cause of disease and the end of suffering of humanity.

High-fructose syrup linked to diabetus

New Research Links High Fructose Corn Syrup to Diabetes in Children

Wednesday, January 30, 2008 by: David Gutierrez

(NewsTarget) Consuming beverages containing high fructose corn syrup may increase the risk of developing diabetes, particularly among children, according to research presented at the 234th annual meeting of the American Chemical Society.

Researchers examined the chemical composition of 11 different beverages containing high fructose corn syrup. All of them were found to contain "astonishingly high" levels of reactive carbonyls, according to lead researcher Chi-Tang Ho.

Reactive carbonyls, associated with the "unbound" fructose and glucose molecules found in high fructose corn syrup, are a type of free radical that has been associated with diabetes. Levels of reactive carbonyls are unusually high in the blood of those with the disease, and are also linked with the occurrence of complications. Reactive carbonyls are also believed to cause tissue damage that may contribute to the development of the disease, especially in children.

In contrast, reactive carbonyls are not present in table sugar or other sweeteners composed mostly of "bound," chemically stable sugars.

High fructose corn syrup is the most popular sweetener in many pre-packaged products because it has a sweetness similar to table sugar but is cheaper to produce, easier to transport, blends into other foods more easily and gives products a longer shelf life.

"People consume too much high-fructose corn syrup in this country," Ho said. "It's in way too many food and drink products, and there's growing evidence that it's bad for you."

The highest levels of reactive carbonyls were found in carbonated beverages, while the lowest were found in high fructose corn syrup-sweetened tea drinks.

The American Beverage Association disputed the link between high fructose corn syrup and diabetes, pointing out that reactive carbonyls are also found in orange juice and coffee. The association did not say how levels in those beverages compare to the levels found in the study. But industry critics are quick to point out the conflict of interest. "The American Beverage Association saying that high fructose corn syrup has no impact on diabetes is like Big Tobacco saying nicotine is not addictive," said consumer health advocate Mike Adams, author of The Five Soft Drink Monsters, a book that teaches people how to kick the soft drink habit. "The enormous amount of evidence now linking high fructose corn syrup consumption with both diabetes and obesity is simply irrefutable."

The study was funded by the Center for Advanced Food Technology of Rutgers University.


Read and pass away!


Nickol Bay Hospital - Karratha

Medicine Recall

All drugs containing PHENYLPROPANOLAMINE are being recalled.
STOP TAKING anything containing this ingredient. It has been
linked to increased hemorrhagic stroke ( bleeding in brain )
among women ages 18-49 in the three days after starting use
of medication. Problems were not found in men, but the FDA
recommended that everyone ( even children ) seek alternative


The following medications contain Phenylpropanolamine:

Acutrim Diet Gum Appetite Suppressant
Acutrim Plus Dietary Supplements
Acutrim Maximum Strength Appetite Control
Alka-Seltzer Plus Children's Cold Medi cine Effervescent
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold medicine (cherry or or ange)
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold Medicine Original
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold &Cough Medicine Effervescent
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold &Flu Medicine
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold &Sinus Effervescent
Alka Seltzer Plus Night-Time Cold Medicine
BC Allergy Sinus Cold Powder
BC Sinus Cold Powder
Comtrex Flu Therapy &Fever Relief
Day &Night Contac 12-Hour Cold Capsules
Contac 12 Hour Caplets
Coricidin D Cold, Flu &Sinus
Dexatrim Caffeine Free
Dexatrim Extended Duration
Dexatrim Gelcaps
Dexatrim Vitamin C/Caffeine Free
Dimetapp Cold &Allergy Chewable Tablets
Dimetapp Cold &Cough Liqui-Gels
Dimetapp DM Cold &Cough Elixir
Dimetapp Elixir
Dimetapp ! 4 Hour L iquid Gels
Dimetapp 4 Hour Tablets
Dimetapp 12 Hour Extentabs Tablets
Naldecon DX Pediatric Drops
Permathene Mega-16
Robitussin CF
Tavist-D 12 Hour Relief of Sinus &Nasal Congestion
Triaminic DM Cough Rel! ief
Triaminic Expectorant Chest &Head
Triaminic Syrup Cold & Allergy
Triaminic Triaminicol Cold &Cough

I just found out and called the 800# on the container
for Triaminic and they informed me that they are voluntarily recalling the following medicines because of a certain ingredient that is causing strokes and seizures in children :

Orange 3D Cold &Allergy Cherry (Pink)
3D Cold &Cough Berry
3D Cough Relief Yellow 3D Expectorant

They are asking you to call them at 800-548-3708 with the lot number on the box so they can send you postage to send it back to them, and they will also issue you a refund. If you know of anyone else with small children, PLEASE PASS THIS ON. THIS IS SERIOUS STUFF!

DO PASS ALONG TO ALL ON YOUR MAILING LIST so people are informed. They can then pass it along to their families....

To confirm these findings please take time to check the


Karen Watherston
Health Advisor
Rio Tinto Minerals
Port Hedland Operations
PO Box 420
Port Hedland 6721
Phone 0891730200/0437 311814
Email karen.watherston@dsl.riotinto.com.au
'Experience is something you get just after you needed it'


Western diet boosts cancer risks

Western diet boosts colon cancer risk by 300 per cent

Thursday, January 24, 2008 by: David Gutierrez

(NewsTarget) The rates of recurrence or death from colon cancer were nearly 3.5 times higher among patients who ate a typical Western diet than among those who followed it least closely, in a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Researchers collected data on 1,009 people who had undergone surgery and chemotherapy for colon cancer in the two years between April 1999 and May 2001. In all cases, the cancer had metastasized to the lymph nodes but had not spread to other organs. The participants filled out standardized surveys about their dietary preferences and habits during chemotherapy and the six months following. They were then tracked for five years.

Of the 1,009 patients who began the study, 324 experienced cancer recurrence during those five years, and 223 of those died. Only 28 of the people who did not experienced recurrence died in the same period.

The dietary habits of the cancer patients fell into two basic patterns: The "Western" diet was characterized by the consumption of large amounts of red and processed meats, refined grains and sugars; the "prudent" diet was characterized by consumption of large amounts of fruits, vegetables and relatively higher amounts of poultry and fish relative to red meat.

The researchers found that cancer recurrence and death were almost 3.5 times more common among people who adhered most closely to the Western diet than among those who ate the lowest amounts of red and processed meats, refined grains and sugars.

"Doctors who treat colon cancer patients need to have the conversation about diet," said researcher Jeffrey Meyerhardt. "From my own experience I know that patients ask about this a lot. They want to know what they should be eating and whether they should be exercising."

The researchers warned that the study only demonstrates a correlation, and not causality between diet and colon cancer. According to Michael Thun, a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society, however, there are already many other health reasons for eating higher amounts of fruits and vegetables and avoiding the foods associated with the "Western" diet.

But consumer health advocate Mike Adams has no doubt about the causes of colorectal cancer. "There's no question that eating dead, processed and chemically-treated foods promotes the development of colon cancer," he said. "Preventing colon cancer is as simple as adopting a diet primarily based on raw plants and living foods. Colon cancer simply disappears, and cancer risk throughout the body plummets on a raw foods diet."

Chiropractic is HEALTH care

Chiropractic is Health Care, Not Disease Care

Thursday, January 24, 2008 by: Herb Newborg

(NewsTarget) Chiropractors have, for the past 112 years, treated sickness and infirmity without the use of drugs and with the goal of avoiding surgical removal or repair of any of the body's organs or structures. Chiropractic's message is that the proactive care of one's body and wise lifestyle choices are necessary to achieve health. Chiropractors have held and maintained this view, even before it became fashionable and long before evidence made it clear that the drug and surgery model of "health care" is really nothing more than "disease care", waiting for disease to occur and then treating the effects. Chiropractic takes a preventive approach to health care: eliminate the cause of disease.

Chiropractors have always maintained that interfering with the transmission of the electro-chemical signals that connect your brain, the master control system for the human organism, to every organ and cell in your body has a detrimental effect on health.

This system is so delicate and of such vital importance that the body has designed the most elaborate set of protection, armor if you will, to protect it. The skull is a protective vault that houses and protects the most sensitive of systems: the eyes, the mouth, the ears and most importantly, the brain. The next critical organ in your body, the spinal cord, is guarded by your spine. This masterpiece of engineering is 24 vertebrae, each one a unique bone, that serves not only as the axis of your musculoskeletal system, giving you the unique ability to walk upright, but also has a unique set of nerves that run through it to every other system of the body through individual holes called foramen.

What travels through the spine and the foramen that protect them is the very essence of your being. From your brain, your spinal cord and the millions of nerves that branch out from it are the core from which your body functions. Before you came into the world, you formed a brain and a spinal cord and developed a body around it. And so it is today that the brain regulates the rest of your body through this delicate system of nerves protected by your spine.

Chiropractors maintain the proper position of these delicate joints and the precious cargo which they protect, your nerve system.

Pressure on the root nerves that leave the spine through the foramen to control and regulate all of the other organ systems of the body can affect millions of nerve fibers. Pressure on the brain stem, where it leaves the skull and enters the spine can also affect millions of nerve fibers. Interfering with these nerve fibers can have disastrous affects on your health.

Chiropractors detect and correct the cause of this interference, allowing your body to self regulate, adapt and heal. The care and maintenance of the spine and nervous system is a necessary component of any natural approach to health and wellness.

Chiropractors have been outspoken opponents of water fluoridation, mass vaccination, over-use of prescription drugs, food additives and have always maintained that it is better to find and correct the cause of disease, rather than merely treat or cover up symptoms.

Today, chiropractors embrace and support the growing body of evidence that health is a result of - a fully functioning nerve system, consuming natural, nutrient rich food, clean pure water, proper exercise, natural sleep and emotional/spiritual well being. A healthy spine allows your body to adapt, regulate and fully realize the benefits of all of these other natural methods of avoiding disease and achieving health. See your chiropractor today to have your spine checked and begin to extricate yourself from the disease care system of treating symptoms

About the author
Herb Newborg is president of Chiropractic America LLC. Chiropractic America was established in 1994 and maintains www.YourSpine.com a website built to serve as an outlet for doctors nationwide to champion natural health care and lifestyle choices and for patients to have access to spinal health information. Chiropractic America has an advisory board comprised of leading chiropractors to ensure doctors and patients have access to the most current, accurate, and relevant information.

Interesting facts!

Men can really breasfeed and have third nipple

25.01.2008 Source:

Top 5 weirdest scientific facts

1. Erection after death

A death erection (sometimes referred to as “angel lust”) is a post-mortem erection which occurs when a male individual dies vertically or face-down. During life, the pumping of blood by the heart ensures a relatively even distribution around the blood vessels of the human body. Once this mechanism has ended, only the force of gravity acts upon the blood. As with any mass, the blood settles at the lowest point of the body and causes edema or swelling to occur; the discoloration caused by this is called lividity.

2. Alien hand syndrome

Alien hand syndrome (or Dr. Strangelove syndrome) is an unusual neurological disorder in which one of the sufferer’s hands seems to take on a life of its own. AHS is best documented in cases where a person has had the two hemispheres of their brain surgically separated, a procedure sometimes used to relieve the symptoms of extreme cases of epilepsy. It also occurs in some cases after other brain surgery, strokes, or infections.

3. Men can breastfeed

The phenomenon of male lactation in humans has become more common in recent years due to the use of medications that stimulate a human male’s mammary glands. Male lactation is most commonly caused by hormonal treatments given to men suffering from prostate cancer. It is also possible for males (and females) to induce lactation through constant massage and simulated ’sucking’ of the nipple over a long period of time (months).

4. Third nipple

A supernumerary nipple (also known as a third nipple) is an additional nipple occurring in mammals including humans. Often mi staken for moles, supernumerary nipples are diagnosed at a rate of 2% in females, less in males. The nipples appear along the two vertical “milk lines” which start in the armpit on each side, run down through the typical nipples and end at the groin. They are classified into eight levels of completeness from a simple patch of hair to a milk-bearing breast in miniature.

5. Death on the toilet

There are many toilet-related injuries and some toilet-related deaths throughout history and in urban legends.In young boys, one of the most common causes of genital injury is when the toilet seat falls down while using the toilet.George II of Great Britain died on the toilet on 25 October 1760 from an aortic dissection. According to Horace Walpole’s memoirs, King George “rose as usual at six, and drank his chocolate; for all his actions were invariably methodic. A quarter after seven he went into a little closet. His German valet de chambre in waiting heard a noise, and running in, found the King dead on the floor.”

Source: bored-bored.com

Man-made " snow" and rain

China creates another man-made snowfall in Tibet

Published on Friday, January 25, 2008.
Source: Xinhuanet

China has succeeded in creating another man-made snowfall in Tibet Autonomous Region to ease drought, local authorities said on Tuesday.

Technicians took advantage of suitable weather conditions to carry out the artificial snowfall in the regional capital of Lhasa from 2:02 p.m. to 4:05 p.m. Saturday, said Gaisang Puncog, head of the Tibet Regional Weather Modification Center.

The precipitation was measured at 0.2 mm in downtown Lhasa and the accumulated snow on the nearby mountains reached 2 cm after the artificial snowfall, he said.

"It played an active role in increasing soil moisture, making the air cleaner and reducing the occurrences of respiratory diseases," he said. "The snowfall and following temperature drop are good for the growth of winter crops."

Technicians with the weather modification authorities fired six rocket shells containing 10 cigarette-sized sticks of silver iodide totaling 1,395 grams over the city's skies in the artificial snowfall operation, he added.

This operation came after another man-made snowfall launched in Ngari Prefecture in western Tibet on Jan. 9.

Lhasa and neighboring areas have reported a lack of snowfall this winter with higher temperatures than normal years.

In April last year, China succeeded in creating artificial snow for the first time in Nagqu County at an altitude of about 4,500 meters in northern Tibet.

About vaccinations!

Immunization Programs Under Scrutiny (Part 1)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008 by: Andreas Morit

(NewsTarget) For many decades, leading scientists and doctors have vehemently promoted the idea that immunization of children is necessary to protect them from contracting such diseases as diphtheria, polio, cholera, typhoid, or malaria. Yet evidence is mounting that immunization may not only be unnecessary but even harmful. Pouring deadly chemicals into a lake doesn't make it immune to pollutants. Likewise, injecting the live poisons contained in vaccines into the bloodstream of children hardly gives future generations a chance to lead truly healthy lives. American children often receive some 30 vaccinations within the first 6 years of their lives and children in the U.K. can expect to be vaccinated about 25 times.

Within the first 15 months of life, vaccinations including nine or more different antigens are pumped into the immature immune systems of babies. Despite the colossal efforts and large sums of money spent on vaccine research, medicine has never been able to devise a cholera vaccine that works and the drugs for malaria aren't as effective as a single herb.

Diphtheria is still combated with toxic immunization programs even though it has almost completely disappeared from the earth. When diphtheria broke out in Chicago in 1969, 11 of the 16 victims were either already immune or had been immunized against diphtheria. In another report, 14 out of 23 victims were completely immune. This shows that vaccination makes no difference when it comes to protection against diphtheria; on the contrary, it can even increase the chances of being infected.

Immunization against mumps is also highly dubious. Even though it initially reduces the likelihood of becoming infected, the risk for mumps infection increases after immunity subsides. In 1995, a study conducted by the U.K.'s Public Health Laboratory Service and published in the Lancet showed that children given the measles/mumps/rubella shot were three times more likely to suffer from convulsions than those children who didn't receive it. The study also found that the MMR vaccine increased by five times the number of children suffering a rare blood disorder.

It is interesting to note that the mortality rate from measles declined by 95 percent before the measles vaccine was introduced. In the United Kingdom, despite widespread vaccination among toddlers, cases of measles recently increased by nearly 25 percent. The United States has been suffering from a steadily increasing epidemic of measles, although (or because) the measles vaccine has been in effect since 1957. After a few sudden drops and rises, the cases of measles are now suddenly dropping again. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) acknowledged that this could be related to an overall decrease in the occurrence of measles in the Western Hemisphere.

In addition to this evidence, many studies show that the measles vaccine isn't effective. For example, as reported in a 1987 New England Journal of Medicine article, a 1986 outbreak of measles in Corpus Christi, Texas found 99 percent of the victims had been vaccinated. In 1987, 60 percent of the cases of measles occurred in children who had been properly vaccinated at the appropriate age. One year later, this figure rose to 80 percent.

Apart from not protecting against measles and possibly even increasing the risk of contracting the disease, the MMR vaccine has been proven to produce numerous adverse effects. Among them are encephalitis, brain complications, convulsions, retardation of mental and physical growth, high fever, pneumonia, meningitis, aseptic meningitis, mumps, atypical measles, blood disorders such as thrombocytopenia, fatal shock, arthritis, SSPE, one-sided paralysis, and death. According to a study published in the Lancet in 1985, if children develop "mild measles" as a result of receiving the vaccine, the accompanying underdeveloped rash may be responsible for causing degenerative diseases such as cancer later in life.

In reality, measles is not a dangerous childhood illness at all. The belief that measles can lead to blindness is a myth that finds its roots in an increased sensitivity to light during illness. This problem subsides when the room is dimmed and vanishes completely with recovery. For a long time, measles was believed to increase the risk of a brain infection (encephalitis) which is known to occur only among children who live in poverty and suffer from malnutrition. Among upper class children, only 1 out of 100,000 will become infected. Besides, less than half of children given a measles booster are protected against the disease.

In a report issued by German health authorities and published in a 1989 issue of the Lancet, the mumps vaccine was revealed to have caused 27 specific neurological reactions, including meningitis, febrile convulsions, encephalitis, and epilepsy. A Yugoslavian study linked 1 per 1,000 cases of mumps encephalitis directly to the vaccine. The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal in the U.S. reported in 1989 that the rate varies from 1 in 405 to 1 in 7,000 shots for mumps.

Although mumps is generally a mild illness and the vaccine's side effects are severe, it is still included in the MMR vaccine. And so is the vaccine for rubella, although it is known to cause arthritis in up to 3 percent of children and in up to 20 percent of the adult women who have received it. In 1994 the Department of Health admitted to doctors that 11 percent of first-time recipients of the rubella vaccine will get arthritis. Symptoms range from mild aches to severe crippling. Other studies show a 30 percent chance of developing arthritis in direct response to the rubella vaccine.

Research confirms that the whooping cough vaccine is only effective in 36 percent of children. A report by Professor Gordon Stewart, which was published in 1994 in World Medicine, demonstrated that the risks of the whooping cough vaccine outweighed the benefits. The whooping cough or pertussis vaccine is by far the most dangerous of all the vaccines. DTP, the whooping cough vaccine that was used in the U.S. until 1992, contained the carcinogen formaldehyde, and the highly toxic metals aluminum and mercury. Both this vaccine and its "improved" version DTaP have never been tested for safety, only for efficacy.

The new vaccine has proved to be no better than the old one. Both versions cause death, near-death, seizures, developmental delay, and hospitalization. DTaP (formerly DTP) is given to babies as young as six weeks old, although the vaccine has never been tested on this age group. Among the 17 potential health problems caused by the whooping cough vaccine is sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). According to an estimate from the University of California at Los Angeles, 1,000 U.S. infants a year die as a direct result of receiving the vaccine.

Immunization programs against polio have no benefits other than economic ones for vaccine producers. The scientist who eliminated polio now suspects that the handful of polio cases which have occurred in the U.S. since the seventies are caused by the live viruses that were used as vaccines. In Finland and Sweden, where the use of live vaccines for polio is prohibited, there has not been a single case of polio in ten years. If live viruses used as a vaccine can cause polio today when hygiene is generally high, it may well be that the polio epidemics 40 to 50 years ago were also caused by immunization against polio while hygiene, sanitation, housing, and nutritional standards were still very low.

In the United States, cases of polio increased by 50 percent between 1957 and 1958, and by 80 percent from 1958 to 1959 after the introduction of mass immunization. In five states, cases of polio doubled after the polio vaccine was given to large numbers of the population. As soon as hygiene and sanitation improved, despite the immunization programs, the viral disease quickly disappeared. Whatever may have been the reason for polio outbreaks in the past, it is highly questionable today to immunize an entire population against a disease that does not even exist any more. It raises major questions about the motives behind polio vaccination.

Further, the history of some simian virus 40 (SV40) infections in humans is linked to the use of polio vaccines. According to the American Journal of Medicine, many studies have reported the presence of SV40 from the polio vaccine in human brain tumors and bone cancers, malignant mesothelioma, and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The polio vaccine seems ever more linked to cancers, especially in children. The cancers caused by the use of the polio vaccine in the past still kills 20,000 people a year in the United States. This is quite outrageous given the fact that polio itself hasn't killed anyone for a long time.

- Excerpt from Timeless Secrets of Health and Rejuvenation by Andreas Moritz (www.amazon.com) or (www.ener-chi.com)

About the author
Andreas Moritz is a medical intuitive; a practitioner of Ayurveda, iridology, shiatsu, and vibrational medicine; a writer; and an artist. He is the author of The Amazing Liver and Gallbladder Flush, Timeless Secrets of Health and Rejuvenation, Lifting the Veil of Duality, Cancer Is Not a Disease, It's Time to Come Alive, Heart Disease No More, Diabetes No More, Simple Steps to Total Health, Diabetes -- No More, Ending the AIDS Myth and Heal Yourself with Sunlight. For more information, visit the author's website (www.ener-chi.com).


Vitamin E benefits - it declines in elderly people

Vitamin E 'may ward off decline'

Wednesday, 23 January 2008, 13:29 GMT

Vitamin E may ward off physical decline in elderly people, research suggests.

Researchers found people aged over 65 who had lower levels of vitamin E performed worse on tests of basic physical ability.

The key may be that vitamin E is an antioxidant, protecting the body's tissues from damage caused by charged particles called free radicals.

The Yale University School of Medicine study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The researchers measured levels of vitamins in the blood of 698 volunteers from areas around the Italian city of Florence.

The volunteers' performance on three physical tests - a short walk, balance and standing up from a seated position - were monitored over a three-year period.

While the researchers found an association between vitamin E and performance, their work suggested no such link with other essential vitamins, such as folate, B6, B12 and D.

Diet key

Lead researcher Dr Benedetta Bartali said: "The odds of declining in physical function was 1.62 times greater in persons with low levels of vitamin E compared with persons with higher levels.

"Our results suggest that an appropriate dietary intake of vitamin E may help to reduce the decline in physical function among older persons.

"Since only one person in our study used vitamin E supplements, it is unknown whether the use of vitamin E supplements would have the same beneficial effect."

Dr Bartali said it was unlikely that vitamin E is simply a marker for poor nutrition because the results were independent of energy intake.

The researchers said they did not set out to identify exactly why vitamin E might help keep the body healthy.

But they point out that as well as its antioxidant effect, the vitamin is involved in the formation of red blood cells.

Vitamin E can be found in foods including wheat germ, soya, nuts, seeds, olives, and green leafy vegetables such as spinach and asparagus.

Scientists have been examining the role vitamin E may play in preventing or treating certain health conditions including cancer and heart disease.

But some research has indicated very high amounts of vitamin E can be harmful, raising one's overall risk of death.

The UK's Food Standards Agency recommends that men should eat a healthy, balanced diet containing 4mg of vitamin E a day. For women the figure is 3mg a day.

Claire Williamson, a nutrition scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation, said further research would be needed to confirm the findings.

She also stressed that vitamin E deficiency was rare.

However, she said: "We know from dietary surveys that many older people have an inadequate intake of vitamins and minerals and dietary improvements are needed.

"Good nutrition can have a profound impact on healthy life expectancy and a good diet can help improve the quality of life in older adults."

The healthy Mozart!

I only said that music like this can do wonders with the body/energy etc the other day

Mozart 'aids eye check accuracy'

Monday, 5 June 2006, 00:48 GMT 01:48 UK

Listening to Mozart helps patients perform more reliably in sight tests, a study has found.

The automated perimetry test checks the peripheral vision of patients with glaucoma or neurological conditions.

Brazilian researchers let 30 patients listen to 10 minutes of Mozart's sonata for two pianos, while another 30 prepared in silence.

The research, in the British Journal of Ophthalmology, found the music improved performance in the tests.

The "Mozart effect" has already been associated with improved mathematical skills, enhanced foetal brain development and improved learning among college students.

The team, from the Santa Casa of Sao Paulo, studied patients who had not taken the AP test before.

In the test, a white shape is projected onto a white background, and the person has to press a button when they can see the shape.

'Priming' the brain

The patients either listened to 10 minutes of music or sat in silence before their tests.

Both groups included a similar mix of men and women and ethnic groups.

The group who listened to music were able to focus better and perform more reliably in tests.

However, in this instance, the Mozart effect was only seen to last around 10 minutes.

Writing in the British Journal of Ophthalmology, the researchers, led by Vanessa Macedo, said there was already evidence that the "Mozart effect" improved spatial-temporal reasoning.

They suggest that the effect may also aid the interpretation of information coming from the eye to the brain.

"We could assume that listening to Mozart can either 'prime' the pathways responsible for visual images, possibly shape or colour or improve intention to some extent."

'Enhancing reliability'

The researchers say there is a possibility that it was not the music which caused the improved performance, and it could have been anxiety in the group left in silence which affected their test results.

But they add that 10 minutes is a relatively short period for anxiety to develop to such an extent that it damaged performance, and that their findings fitted in to previous studies showing the "Mozart effect" in other areas.

However Dr Robert Stamper, of the University College San Francisco's department of ophthalmology, said: "Despite a large body of evidence that Mozart's music may have a positive influence on a variety of performance tasks, this study does not prove that it was the Mozart that was the causative factor.

"It could have been the headphones, Mozart music in general, or the specific piece that they played."

But he added: "The authors are to be congratulated for proposing a simple, inexpensive, non-invasive procedure for enhancing reliability of one of our least reliable testing methods.

"If some of the questions about the study could be answered satisfactorily, this improvement in our visual field testing process would be most welcome."

And Ian Murdoch, consultant Ophthalmic surgeon at Moorfields Eye Hospital, warned there was potential bias in the study.

"An example of how this might matter might be that only music lovers were selected for the music listening group.

"This has more than just the possibility that they felt more buoyed up by Mozart; there is clear evidence that music prowess is linked to intelligence and thus may well be linked to field performance.

"It is tricky to make any conclusion other than it has a possible effect on medical students."


Pharmion Corp. gets permission to sell drug thalidomide in Europe

01/24/2008 17:34 Source:

Pharmion Corp. finally got permission to remarket Thalidomide drug in Europe as a treatment for multiple myeloma blood disorders in patients over 65.

Thalidomide is a sedative, hypnotic, and multiple myeloma medication. It was developed by German pharmaceutical company Grünenthal. Thalidomide was chiefly sold and prescribed during the late 1950s and early 1960s to pregnant women, as an antiemetic to combat morning sickness and as an aid to help them sleep. Before its release, inadequate tests were performed to assess the drug's safety, with catastrophic results for the children of women who had taken thalidomide during their pregnancies.

In 1962, in reaction to the tragedy, the United States Congress enacted laws requiring tests for safety during pregnancy before a drug can receive approval for sale in the U.S. Other countries enacted similar legislation, and thalidomide was not prescribed or sold for decades.

Researchers, however, continued to work with the drug. Soon after its banishment, an Israeli doctor discovered anti-inflammatory effects of thalidomide and began to look for uses of the medication despite its teratogenic effects. He found that patients with erythema nodosum leprosum, a painful skin condition associated with leprosy, experienced relief of their pain by taking thalidomide.

Further work conducted in 1991 by Dr. Gilla Kaplan at Rockefeller University in New York City showed that thalidomide worked in leprosy by inhibiting tumor necrosis factor alpha. Kaplan partnered with Celgene Corporation to further develop the potential for thalidomide.

Subsequent research has shown that it is effective in multiple myeloma, and it is now approved by the FDA for use in this malignancy.

Taking the dreadful experience and side effects into consideration, European regulators have required Pharmion to establish safeguards around thalidomide's sale.

Lack of health and fluoride

1945 Human Experiment Predicts Current Fluoride Ill Effects

Sally Stride
January 22, 2008

In 1945 dentists set out to prove that adding fluoride chemicals into public water supplies safely prevented children’s tooth decay. The studies failed; but early fluoridationists ignored this inconvenient truth and forged ahead. Now with 2/3 of public water supplies fluoridated, Americans are fluoride overdosed and suffer from fluoride’s toxic effects as cavity rates climb.

In 1955, ten years into the experiment, researchers reported more bone defects, anemia and earlier female menstruation in children purposely dosed with sodium fluoride-laced drinking water (1956 Journal of the American Dental Association). This is the first, and only, fluoridation human health experiment which was carried out on the entire population in the city of Newburgh NY.

How did this happen?

In the early 1900’s, brown and yellow discolored, but decay resistant, teeth were prevalent in healthier, wealthier U.S. populations drinking and irrigating their crops with naturally calcium-fluoridated water.

Researchers discovered fluoride was the tooth discoloring culprit and mistakenly thought fluoride was also the cavity-fighting hero – unaware that calcium was required to grow sound dentition. And also unaware of Dentist Weston Price’s extensive research published in 1939 showing that without fluoride, healthier populations had healthier teeth because of good diets.

Public health officials, so sure sodium fluoride safely benefited children’s teeth, had no misgivings about carrying out this very unusual experiment without first doing animal studies, without informed consent and without thought or interest about how sodium fluoride could afflict adults.

Mistakenly assuming all fluorides are the same, in 1945, sodium fluoride, waste products from industries such as Alcoa Aluminum Company (not natural calcium-fluoride), was added to Newburgh NY’s water supply at about one milligram fluoride per liter of water. Kingston NY, the control city for comparison purposes, was left fluoride-free.

Kingston and Newburgh are thirty-five miles apart on the Hudson River in New York State and in 1940 had populations of 31,956 and 28,817, respectively. In Newburgh, 500 children were examined after ten years and 405 in Kingston. Adults were never tested.

Although planned to last ten years, due to political pressure, the Newburgh/Kingston study was declared a success after five years which caused many U.S. cities to start fluoridation prematurely.

Newburgh’s children were given complete physicals and x-rays, over the course of the study, from birth to age nine in the first year and up to age eighteen in the final year.

“®outine laboratory studies were omitted in the control group during most of the study, they were included in the final examination,” according to Schlesinger and colleagues, in “Newburgh-Kingston caries-fluorine study XIII. Pediatric findings after ten years.”

The researchers report after ten years of fluoridation in Newburgh New York:

– “The average age at the menarche was 12 years among the girls studied in Newburgh and 12 years 5 months among the girls in Kingston.”

–Hemoglobin (iron-containing part of a red blood cell): “a few more children in the range below 12.9 grams per hundred milliliters in Newburgh”

–“…a slightly higher proportion of children in Newburgh were found to have a total erythrocyte (red blood cell) count below 4,400,000 per milliliter”

–Knee X-rays of Newburgh children reveals more cortical bone defects, and irregular mineralization of the thigh bone.

Only twenty-five Newburgh children had eye and ear exams. Two had hearing loss; eight had abnormal vision. Even though researchers discovered more adult cataracts in surveys conducted before 1944 in communities with naturally high water fluoride concentrations Newburgh and Kingston adults were never checked for this defect.

Only two groups of twelve-year-old boys were tested for fluoride’s toxic kidney effects.

In a statewide survey conducted in 1954, J. A. Forst, M.D a New York public health official reported observing one-third more dental defects, including malposition of teeth, in fluoridated Newburgh, New York, than in the non-fluoridated control city of Kingston.

The 2004 book “The Fluoride Deception,” by Christopher Bryson, reveals that in addition to NYS Dep’t of Health examinations “the University of Rochester conducted its own studies, measuring how much fluoride Newburgh citizens retained in their blood and tissues. Health Department personnel cooperated, shipping blood and placenta samples to the Rochester scientists,” writes Bryson. Three times as much fluoride was found in the placentas and blood samples gathered from Newburgh as from non-fluoridated Rochester, reports Bryson.

Following back the scientific references in all current fluoridation safety literature will invariably lead back to the Newburgh/Kingston study which actually failed to prove fluoridation is safe for all who drink it although public health officials and dentists tell a different story..

On January 25, 1945, Grand Rapids Michigan was actually the first U.S. city to fluoridate; without health effects measured. Even that study is scientifically dishonest. After five years tooth decay declined equally in Grand Rapids and its control city Muskegon Michigan so Muskegon’s water was fluoridated which actually invalidated this experiment.

So it’s not surprising that a toxicological review of current fluoride science by the prestigious National Academies shows that fluoride jeopardizes health - even at lowlevels deliberately added to public water supplies.

Fluoride poses risks to the thyroid gland, diabetics, kidney patients, high water drinkers and others and can severely damage children’s teeth. Further studies linking fluoride to cancer and lowered IQ are plausible, they report.


Some astrological info




Although Pluto is a small planet (in fact, it is now classified as a dwarf planet) it packs a powerful punch. Pluto represents death and endings and the breakdown of the structures in our life that are required in order to bring transformation and fresh beginnings. Pluto brings us face to face with the ultimate reality of life and, watching over us like a shamanic guardian, destroys whatever stands in the way of our soul's ultimate destination.

Pluto's passage through the signs brings with it a compulsive fascination in the issues denoted by that sign. He ruthlessly exposes the darkness that lies at the core of the sign's archetypes and, destroying the old order, demands that we rebuild on the ashes of the old. Like the Phoenix bird with which it is associated, Pluto dies and is regenerated to begin anew.

Pluto has been traveling through Sagittarius since 1995, bringing with it wars (Pluto) over religion and ideology (Sagittarius), as well as "culture wars" and the growing divide between groups that think differently, all Sagittarius archetypes. Sagittarius rules the media and entertainment, and the rise of a new compulsivity in celebrity journalism has grown up since Pluto entered Sagittarius, with the internet spawning a huge new gossip market. Sagittarius carries with it a nearly relentless optimism; ruled by Jupiter with its expansive need for growth, Pluto in Sagittarius has seen soaring home prices and a burgeoning stock market that seems to have no end. The "new economy" of the dot com era occurred under Pluto's Sagittarian influence, as did the explosion of the vacation home market.

Pluto transits typically include a breakdown phase, where structures that no longer serve us are dismantled to make room for new structures that are more in line with our spiritual evolution. I like to think of these periods as course corrections, where our guides or gods decide that certain changes are required. If we understand the process and can surrender to it with trust, this can be an exhilarating time of transformation and empowerment. If we resist and hold on to the past it can be full of tragedy and pain.

Capricorn is the sign of the builder, the achiever. Capricorn is rooted in the material world and understands that life on earth requires a practical approach to the matters of earning a living. There is also a drive for success; to climb the highest mountains like the goat which is it's symbol. For Capricorn, the ends justify the means and achievement of one's goals is the important thing and it is able to maintain a powerful focus.

Its rulership by Saturn gives respect for discipline and authority and Capricorn has tremendous respect for governmental structures and the stability of a moral system. However, Saturn also bestows its tendency towards pessimism and lack of humor as all things personal are sacrificed for the goal. There is often a tendency to prize material things above those of the emotional or spiritual realms, and this lack of balance can create a dry and miserable experience.

When Pluto goes through Capricorn we can expect the transformation of all things ruled by that sign - such as our religious institutions, halls of government and political structures, the way we inter our dead and take care of our old people, construction techniques and buildings, and how we handle ownership of property.
While Pluto takes 244 years to orbit the Sun, its elliptical orbit means that it doesn't spend the same amount of time in each sign. For example, it only took twelve years to travel through Scorpio, but it took 26 years to get through Cancer and 19 years through Leo. Pluto will be in Capricorn until 2024, and this occurs at a time when our Capricornian structures are ripe for transformation. Industry (Capricorn) in developed and developing countries as become a major source of carbon emissions which threaten the survival of life on earth. The Catholic Church (Capricorn), rocked by sex scandals, is struggling for survival. The very way we do business (Capricorn) is being forever changed by the globalization of politics and the economy.

Pluto will be enter Capricorn for the first time January 25, 2008 and will retrograde back into Sagittarius one final time on June 14. It will journey back into Capricorn on November 26, 2008 and remain there until January 21, 2024. For sixteen years, Pluto will engage in a process of breaking down and then rebuilding the structures on which we depend for a successful experience in the material world.

There is a natural evolution to the path of the planets through the zodiacal signs as each sign offers a completely different experience than the sign before. In Sagittarius, Pluto has been compulsively expansive and optimistic, intensifying religious fervor - all qualities of Sagittarius. In Capricorn, Pluto seeks to contract and solidify and build solid structures for society. In the process, the structures that already exist are broken down and irrevocably transformed

Pluto was last in Capricorn from November 1762 until December 1, 1778. Pluto deals with transformation of the political and economic realities of our world, and its entry into Capricorn marked the end of the Seven Years' War in which France ceded Canada to Britain, but political unrest was felt throughout Europe as well as in the Colonies and this period marked a reconfiguration of many of the nations in the world. Catherine the Great acceded to the throne after the murder of her husband, perhaps at her own hand, and presided over wars with the Ottoman Empire that resulted in Russian acquisition of much of the Turkish lands. The first partition in Poland occurred during this period which split Poland into three sections owned by Russia, Prussia and Austria. Britain traded Cuba to Spain in exchange for Florida; Parliament passed the Stamp Act to pay for the wars that began the Colonial rebellion that resulted in the American Revolution.

The thirst for revolution in France, England and Russia of the Pluto in Aquarius period that generated an obsession (Pluto) with liberty and equality (Aquarius) stemmed from a reaction to the breakup and reconfiguration of world nations (Capricorn) that followed the colonial expansion (Sagittarius) that preceded it. Pluto's previous passage through Capricorn back in 1516-1533 c.e. was preceded by the original exploration of the New World that gave rise to the later Colonial ideals. Once the original explorers had returned to the courts of Europe, under Pluto in Capricorn those countries set out to conquer the New World and create new colonies that were subservient to the European rulers. The rise of anti-Catholic sentiment that brought about the rise of Protestants under Pluto in Sagittarius gave way to Martin Luther's formalizing his revolt with his nailing his Thesis to the door of the Church in 1517 under Pluto in Capricorn, founding a new structure of worship, the Lutheran Church.

Although Pluto will enter Capricorn for the first time in January, it will retrograde back into the late degrees in Sagittarius in June 2008 where it will make one final sweep through the Sagittarian issues of religion, philosophy, travel, ideology, journalism, optimism, and general expansion. Throughout 2008 it will be virtually stationary, traveling less than three degrees during this period, from 1 degree Capricorn back through 28 degrees Sagittarius. Because it will be stationary for so long, where its influence is the most powerful, I would expect a great deal of intensity and forced transformation during this period. This will be particularly intense for those of us who have planets in the late degrees of the mutable signs (Virgo, Pisces, Sagittarius, Gemini) or the early degrees of the cardinal signs (Capricorn, Cancer, Aries Libra).

Pluto causes endings and new beginnings - it forces us to surrender as it rebuilds us from the inside out. I suspect that throughout next year the intense optimism of Pluto in Sagittarius will battle with the necessity for realism of Pluto in Capricorn, and it will be a while before the economic problems really hit home. Mars will oppose Pluto in early March, which will create some fireworks of aggression and confrontation, and Saturn will make its second trine to Pluto in April which will ease the challenge of the new requirements of Capricorn Pluto which wants to tear down and rebuild the structures of our life and planet and intensify the power bases that govern society.

Once Pluto is firmly entrenched in Capricorn beginning in December 2008, we will begin to really see it at work. This of course will follow the US presidential election in November 2008. Pluto seeks to focus and intensify as well as break down and regenerate. The structures of our world keep societies in order and functioning: churches, governments, buildings - all of these are ruled by Capricorn. But so are bridges and tunnels, and the entire infrastructure upon which we live, particularly in urban areas, are likely to experience a severe breakdown while Pluto travels through Capricorn. Underground transportation, under the domain of the god of the underworld, could become a battleground as Pluto often brings warfare or death in the areas of the sign through which it passes (such as September 11th during Pluto in Sagittarius, where air travel became a conveyance of death and total world transformation).

During the passage of Pluto, we see extremes and compulsions in the area of life associated with the sign through which Pluto travels, and with the Capricornian association with governments and government buildings I would expect a worldwide attempt to solidify a global government and minimize individual liberties. Pluto deals with issues of power - on a personal level such as personal empowerment as well as with the power structures that govern all of humanity that fall under the rubric of the Capricorn theme. When Uranus enters Aries in 2010-2011, there will be a fervor as the pendulum swings back towards individual liberties. By the time Uranus forms a square to Pluto in Capricorn in 2012-2013 there will be tremendous cultural, social and political upheaval which will further transform governments and political structures.

Pluto's reach will extend beyond governments, however. Capricorn also rules the elderly and end of life issues, and Pluto's passage through Capricorn could transform the way we view the entire process of death and dying, including the disposal of the body after death.

Often Pluto's passage through one sign is a reaction to Pluto's passage through the previous sign, and in Capricorn there may be a reaction of the practical and materialistic Capricorn against the ideological idealism of Pluto's travel through Sagittarius. An overdose of pragmatism could lead to the negativity and depression with which Capricorn is sometimes associated. Capricorn is associated with achievement and can be ruthless in its efforts to climb to the top, and we could see an increased obsession (Pluto) with climbing the ladder of success that leads to a breakdown in certain segments of society.

There is always a side to Pluto cycles, and in Capricorn we are likely to see an increase in stability and a more practical approach to economics and business than we saw under the Sagittarian influence. The inflated (Sag) bonuses for CEOs that we saw in recent years are likely a sign of the past as businesses and corporations become more concerned with Capricornian fundamentals than with Sagittarian appearance and image. Capricorn is essentially practical and prizes achievement above all else, which means achievement of real goals and objectives. Although Pluto in Capricorn will bring out secrets (Pluto) of governments and other political entities (Cap), there will be an increased focus on proficiency, skill, and a successful outcome rather than spin and propaganda of the Sagittarian era.

About temperatures on Earth

Russian scientist says Earth could soon face new Ice Age

RIA Novosti
Tuesday January 22, 2008

Temperatures on Earth have stabilized in the past decade, and the planet should brace itself for a new Ice Age rather than global warming, a Russian scientist said in an interview with RIA Novosti Tuesday.

"Russian and foreign research data confirm that global temperatures in 2007 were practically similar to those in 2006, and, in general, identical to 1998-2006 temperatures, which, basically, means that the Earth passed the peak of global warming in 1998-2005," said Khabibullo Abdusamatov, head of a space research lab at the Pulkovo observatory in St. Petersburg.

According to the scientist, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere has risen more than 4% in the past decade, but global warming has practically stopped. It confirms the theory of "solar" impact on changes in the Earth's climate, because the amount of solar energy reaching the planet has drastically decreased during the same period, the scientist said.

Had global temperatures directly responded to concentrations of "greenhouse" gases in the atmosphere, they would have risen by at least 0.1 Celsius in the past ten years, however, it never happened, he said.

"A year ago, many meteorologists predicted that higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would make the year 2007 the hottest in the last decade, but, fortunately, these predictions did not become reality," Abdusamatov said.

He also said that in 2008, global temperatures would drop slightly, rather than rise, due to unprecedentedly low solar radiation in the past 30 years, and would continue decreasing even if industrial emissions of carbon dioxide reach record levels.

By 2041, solar activity will reach its minimum according to a 200-year cycle, and a deep cooling period will hit the Earth approximately in 2055-2060. It will last for about 45-65 years, the scientist added.

"By the mid-21st century the planet will face another Little Ice Age, similar to the Maunder Minimum, because the amount of solar radiation hitting the Earth has been constantly decreasing since the 1990s and will reach its minimum approximately in 2041," he said.

The Maunder Minimum occurred between 1645 and 1715, when only about 50 spots appeared on the Sun, as opposed to the typical 40,000-50,000 spots.

It coincided with the middle and coldest part of the so called Little Ice Age, during which Europe and North America were subjected to bitterly cold winters.

"However, the thermal inertia of the world's oceans and seas will delay a 'deep cooling' of the planet, and the new Ice Age will begin sometime during 2055-2060, probably lasting for several decades," Abdusamatov said.

Therefore, the Earth must brace itself for a growing ice cap, rather than rising waters in global oceans caused by ice melting.

Mankind will face serious economic, social, and demographic consequences of the coming Ice Age because it will directly affect more than 80% of the earth's population, the scientist concluded.


Nanoparticles and biomagnetic field in health

Controlling Cell Behavior with Magnets

Nanoparticles allow researchers to initiate biochemical events at will.

By Katherine Bourzac
January 18, 2008

For the first time, researchers have demonstrated a means of controlling cell functions with a physical, rather than chemical, signal. Using a magnetic field to pull together tiny beads targeted to particular cell receptors, Harvard researchers made cells take up calcium, and then stop, then take it up again. Their work is the first to prove that such a level of control over cells is possible. If the approach can be used with many cell types and cell functions, it could lead to a totally new class of therapies that rely on cells themselves to make and release drugs.

The research, which appeared in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, was led by Donald Ingber, professor of pathology at Harvard Medical School and cochair of the Harvard Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. Ingber's group demonstrated its method for biomagnetic control using a type of immune-system cell that mediates allergic reactions. Targeted nanoparticles with iron oxide cores were used to mimic antigens in vitro. Each is attached to a molecule that in turn can attach to a single receptor on an immune cell. When Ingber exposes cells bound with these particles to a weak magnetic field, the nanoparticles become magnetic and draw together, pulling the attached cell receptors into clusters. This causes the cells to take in calcium. (In the body, this would initiate a chain of events that leads the cells to release histamine.) When the magnetic field is turned off, the particles are no longer attracted to each other, the receptors move apart, and the influx of calcium stops.

"It's not the chemistry; it's the proximity" that activates such receptors, says Ingber.

The approach could have a far-reaching impact, as many important cell receptors are activated in a similar way and might be controlled using Ingber's method.

"In recent years, there has been a realization that physical events, not just chemical events, are important" to cell function, says Shu Chien, a bioengineer at the University of California, San Diego. Researchers have probed the effects of physical forces on cells by, for example, squishing them between plates or pulling probes across their surfaces. But none of these techniques work at as fine a level of control as Ingber's magnetic beads, which act on single biomolecules.

"Up to now, there hasn't been much control [over cells] at this scale," says Larry Nagahara, project manager in the National Cancer Institute's Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer and a physics professor at Arizona State University.

Many drugs, from anticancer antibodies to hormones, work by activating cell receptors. Once a hormone is in the blood, however, there's no turning it on or off. "This shows that you can turn on and off the signal, and that you can do it instantly," says Christopher Chen, a bioengineer at the University of Pennsylvania. "That's something that's hard to do, for example, with an antibody."

Ingber has many ideas for devices that might integrate his method of cellular control. Magnetic pacemakers could use cells instead of electrodes to send electrical pulses to the heart. Implantable drug factories might contain many groups of cells, each of which makes a different drug when activated by a magnetic signal. Biomagnetic control might lead to computers that can take advantage of cells' processing power. "Cells do complex things like image processing so much better than computers," says Ingber. Ingber, who began the project in response to a call by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency for new cell-machine interfaces, acknowledges that his work is in its early stages. In fifty years, however, he expects that there will be devices that "seamlessly interface between living cells and machines."

Other researchers agree. Ingber's biomagnetic control "may represent a new mechanism for man-machine interfaces," says UC San Diego's Chien. But before such interfaces can be developed, says University of Pennsylvania engineer Chen, researchers need to learn a lot more about cells.

"Say we have cells on a chip and we know what behavior we want to elicit," such as getting a stem cell to enter a wound site and initiate repairs, says Chen. "We don't know what signaling events have to happen to put the cell into the right state" so that it will take the desired action.

In the short term, Chen says that Ingber's method could help biologists gain crucial knowledge about cell signaling, such as how these signals are processed chemically and physically by the cell, and how they lead to particular outcomes, from calcium uptake to changes in gene expression. "It provides a tool that lets us tweak the cell and see what happens," says Chen.


Bacteria race ahead of drugs!

Bacteria race ahead of drugs

Falling behind: Deadly infections increasingly able to beat antibiotics

Sabin Russell
Sunday, January 20, 2008

At a busy microbiology lab in San Francisco, bad bugs are brewing inside vials of human blood, or sprouting inside petri dishes, all in preparation for a battery of tests.

These tests will tell doctors at UCSF Medical Center which kinds of bacteria are infecting their patients, and which antibiotics have the best chance to knock those infections down.

[Podcast: Growing problem of drug-resistant diseases and what you can do about it.]

With disturbing regularity, the list of available options is short, and it is getting shorter.

Dr. Jeff Brooks has been director of the UCSF lab for 29 years, and has watched with a mixture of fascination and dread how bacteria once tamed by antibiotics evolve rapidly into forms that practically no drug can treat.

"These organisms are very small," he said, "but they are still smarter than we are."

Among the most alarming of these is MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a bug that used to be confined to vulnerable hospital patients, but now is infecting otherwise healthy people in schools, gymnasiums and the home.

As MRSA continues its natural evolution, even more drug-resistant strains are emerging. The most aggressive of these is one called USA300.

Last week, doctors at San Francisco General Hospital reported that a variant of that strain, resistant to six important antibiotics normally used to treat staph, may be transmitted by sexual contact and is spreading among gay men in San Francisco, Boston, New York and Los Angeles.

Yet the problem goes far beyond one bug and a handful of drugs. Entire classes of mainstay antibiotics are being threatened with obsolescence, and bugs far more dangerous than staph are evolving in ominous ways.

"We are on the verge of losing control of the situation, particularly in the hospitals," said Dr. Chip Chambers, chief of infectious disease at San Francisco General Hospital.

The reasons for increasing drug resistance are well known:

- Overuse of antibiotics, which speeds the natural evolution of bacteria, promoting new mutant strains resistant to those drugs.

- Careless prescribing of antibiotics that aren't effective for the malady in question, such as a viral infection.

- Patient demand for antibiotics when they aren't needed.

Heavy use of antibiotics in poultry and livestock feed, which can breed resistance to similar drugs for people.

Germ strains that interbreed at hospitals, where infection controls as simple as hand-washing are lax.

All this is happening while the supply of new antibiotics from drug company laboratories is running dry.

Since commercial production of penicillin began in the 1940s, antibiotics have been the miracle drugs of modern medicine, suppressing infectious diseases that have afflicted human beings for thousands of years. But today, as a generation of Baby Boomers begins to enter a phase of life marked by the ailments of aging, we are running out of miracles.

Top infectious disease doctors are saying that lawmakers and the public at large do not realize the grave implications of this trend.

"Within just a few years, we could be seeing that most of our microorganisms are resistant to most of our antibiotics," said Dr. Jack Edwards, chief of infectious diseases at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

At Brooks' microbiology laboratory, the evolutionary struggle of bacteria versus antibiotics is on display every day. He grabbed a clear plastic dish that grew golden-hued MRSA germs taken from a patient a few days earlier. Inside were seven paper dots, each impregnated with a different drug. If the antibiotic worked, the dot had a clear ring around it - a zone where no germs could grow. No ring meant the drug had failed. This test was typical. Three drugs worked, four had failed.

The strategy for nearly 70 years has been to stay a step ahead of resistance by developing new antibiotics. In the past decade, however, major drugmakers have been dropping out of the field. The number of new antibiotics in development has plummeted. During the five-year period ended in 1987, the FDA licensed 16 novel antibiotics. In the most recent five-year period, only five were approved.

For drugmakers, the economics are simple: An antibiotic can cure an infection in a matter of days. There is much more money in finding drugs that must be taken for a lifetime.

Toll of antibiotic resistance
With antibiotic research lagging, the bugs are catching up, and infections are taking a terrible toll. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that each year 99,000 Americans die of various bacterial infections that they pick up while hospitalized - more than double the number killed every year in automobile accidents.

Of the 1.7 million hospital-acquired infections that occur each year, studies show, 70 percent are resistant to at least one antibiotic.

Drug-resistant staph is rapidly becoming a major public health menace. Last fall, the CDC estimated that MRSA alone has killed 19,000 Americans. Most of these patients picked up the bug in the hospital, but it is now spreading in urban and suburban neighborhoods across the nation.

"MRSA is killing people. It almost killed me," said Peg McQueary, whose life was upended when she nicked her leg with a razor three years ago.

Within days, her leg was grotesquely swollen, red from foot to knee. Her husband wheeled her into a Kaiser medical office, where her doctor took one look and rushed her to an isolation room.

She was placed on intravenous vancomycin, a drug reserved for the most serious cases of MRSA. Since that frightening week, the 42-year-old Roseville woman has spent much of her life in and out of hospitals, and she's learned just how difficult these infections can be to treat. McQueary has burned through drug after drug, but the staph keeps coming back.

She's been hooked up at her home to bags of vancomycin and swallowed doses of linezolid, clindamycin and a half a dozen other antibiotics with barely pronounceable names and limited effect.

One of the newest antibiotics, intravenous daptomycin - approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2003 - seems to work the best, but it has not prevented recurrences.

"It's just a struggle to do everyday things," she said. "I am ready to scream about it."

Today, she moderates a Web site, MRSA Resources Support Forum, swapping stories with other sufferers. "Giving them a place to vent is some sort of healing for me," she said.

McQueary's travails are becoming an all-too-familiar American experience. As bacteria evolve new ways to sidestep antibiotics, doctors treating infections find themselves with a dwindling list of options. Old-line drugs are losing their punch, while the newer ones are both costly and laden with side effects.

Drugs' weakening grip
Dr. Joseph Guglielmo, chairman of the Department of Clinical Pharmacy at UCSF, closely tracks the effectiveness of dozens of antibiotics against different infectious bacteria. Laminated color-coded cards called antibiograms are printed up for hospital physicians each year. They chart the success rate of each antibiotic against at least 12 major pathogens. These charts show how antibiotics, like tires slowly leaking air, are losing strength year by year.

As head of the hospital pharmacy, Guglielmo oversees a small warehouse at the medical center that stores millions of dollars worth of prescription drugs that are used every day to treat patients there. Strolling down the aisles that houses bins of antibiotics, he reached for a bottle of imipenem, and cradled the little vial in the palm of his hand.

"This one is the last line of defense," he said.

Imipenem was approved by the FDA in 1985. A powerful member of the carbapenem family - the latest in a long line of penicillin-like drugs - it is frequently used in hospitals today because it can still defeat a wide variety of germs that have outwitted the earlier-generation antibiotics.

But at a cost of about $60 a day, and with a safety profile that includes risk of seizure, it is a "Big Gun" drug that must be used carefully. As soon as doctors discover that a lesser antibiotic will work, they will stop prescribing imipenem, like soldiers conserving their last remaining stores of ammunition.

Now, there are signs of trouble.

Imipenem has been the antibiotic of choice for doctors treating Klebsiella, a vigorous microbe that causes pneumonia in hospitalized patients. But in June 2005, New York City doctors reported in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine outbreaks of imipenem-resistant Klebsiella. Fifty-nine such cases were logged at just two hospitals. The death rate among those whose infections entered their bloodstreams was 47 percent.

Last year, Israeli doctors battled an outbreak of carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella that has killed more than 400 patients.

Cipro's dramatic decline
The antibiotic Cipro, approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1987, is familiar to millions of Americans because it is widely prescribed for pneumonia, urinary tract infections and sexually transmitted diseases. It was the drug used to treat victims of the anthrax mailings that followed the Sept. 11 attacks.

Unlike most antibiotics, which originated from natural toxins produced by bacteria, Cipro came from tinkering with a chemical compound used to fight malaria. The German drug giant Bayer patented Cipro's active ingredient in 1983, and it subsequently became the most widely sold antibiotic in the world.

At hospitals across the country, however, clinicians have witnessed a remarkable drop-off in the utility of Cipro against more commonly encountered germs.

Antibiograms from the UCSF lab highlight the alarming erosion: As recently as 1999, Cipro was effective against 95 percent of specimens of E. coli - bacteria responsible for the most common hospital-acquired infections in the United States. By 2006, Cipro would work against only 60 percent of samples tested.

The bacterial evolution that has so quickly sapped Cipro has also reduced the effectiveness of the entire family of related antibiotics called fluoroquinolones - drugs such as Levaquin, Floxin, and Noroxin. "If there is ever a group of drugs that has taken a beating, it is these," said UCSF pharmacy chief Guglielmo.

Against Acinetobacter - a bug responsible for rising numbers of bloodstream and lung infections in intensive care units, as well as among combat casualties in Iraq - Cipro's effectiveness fell from 80 percent in 1999 to 10 percent just four years later. Cipro has also lost ground against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a common cause of pneumonia in hospitalized patients. Nearly 80 percent of the bugs tested were susceptible to Cipro in 1999. That fell to 65 percent by 2004.

At UCSF, doctors carefully monitor the trends in drug resistance and modify their prescribing patterns accordingly. As a result, they have been able to nudge some of these resistance levels down. Cipro's effectiveness against Acinetobacter crept up to 40 percent last year, for example, but the overall trend remains alarming.

Although MRSA infections have been capturing headlines, bugs such as Acinetobacter, Klebsiella and Pseudomonas are keeping doctors awake at night. They come from a class of pathogens called Gram-negative bacteria, which typically have an extra layer of microbial skin to ward off antibiotics, and internal pumps that literally drive out antibiotics that penetrate.

Gram-negative infections have always been difficult to treat, and few new drugs are in development. Some researchers believe that the pipeline for new antibiotics is drying up because it is simply getting more difficult to outwit the bugs. "It may be that we've already found all the good antibiotics," warned Chambers, San Francisco General Hospital's infectious disease chief. "If that is so, then we've really got to be careful how we use the ones we have."

Bacteria's natural evolution
Terry Hazen, senior scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and director of its ecology program, is not at all surprised by the tenacity of our bacterial foes. "We are talking about 3.5 billion years of evolution," he said. "They are the dominant life on Earth."

Bacteria have invaded virtually every ecological niche on the planet. Human explorers of extreme environments such as deep wells and mines are still finding new bacterial species. "As you go deeper into the subsurface, thousands and thousands of feet, you find bacteria that have been isolated for millions of years - and you find multiple antibiotic resistance," Hazen said.

In his view, when bacteria develop resistance to modern antibiotics, they are merely rolling out old tricks they mastered eons ago in their struggle to live in harsh environments in competition with similarly resilient species.

Drug industry economics are also a factor. "It takes a hell of a lot of effort to find the next really good drug," said Steven Projan, vice president of New Jersey pharmaceutical giant Wyeth Inc.

The costs of bringing a new drug to market are hotly debated. A Tufts University study estimated $802 million; the consumer group Public Citizen pegs it at $110 million. Either way, the investment is huge.

By 1990, according to the Infectious Diseases Society of America, half the major drugmakers in Japan and the United States had cut back or halted antibiotic research. Since 2000, some of the biggest names in pharmaceutical development - Roche, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Abbott Laboratories, Eli Lilly, Aventis and Procter & Gamble - had joined the exodus.

By common measures used to gauge the profit potential of new drugs, antibiotics fall way behind, Projan explained. For every $100 million that a new antibiotic might yield, after projected revenue and expenses are tallied, a new cancer drug will generate $300 million. A new drug for arthritis, by this same analysis, brings in $1.1 billion. Investors have been placing their bets accordingly.

In 2002, Wyeth had sharply curtailed its own antibiotic drug discovery programs. "We tried to get out of the field, but one of the reasons we did not get out altogether is we feel we have a public responsibility to fund more research," said Projan.

Wyeth's decision to keep some antibiotic research alive eventually paid off. In June 2005, the FDA licensed Tygacil, an intravenous antibiotic for complicated skin diseases such as drug-resistant staph infection. Only one new antibiotic for oral or intravenous use has won FDA approval since.

Pointing a finger at doctors
The waning of antibiotics in the arsenal of modern medicine has been going on for so long that some doctors fear a kind of complacency has set in. Increasingly, the medical profession is pointing a finger at itself.

"We have behaved very badly," said Dr. Louis Rice, a Harvard-educated, Columbia-trained specialist in infectious diseases. "We have made a lot of stupid choices."

His words brought a nervous silence to thousands of his colleagues, as he delivered a keynote speech in 2006 for the American Society for Microbiology's annual conference in San Francisco.

Rice, a professor at Cleveland's Case Western Reserve University, said doctors and drug companies alike are responsible for breeding resistance by "the indiscriminate dumping of antibiotics into our human patients."

Drug-resistant germs contaminate the bedrails, the catheter lines, the blood pressure cuffs and even the unwashed hands of doctors, nurses and orderlies. The germs keep evolving, swapping drug-resistance traits with other microbes. He likened American intensive-care units - the high-tech enclaves where the most seriously ill patients are treated - to "toxic waste dumps."

Drug companies, he said, have a responsibility to refill the nation's depleted medicine chest. He suggested that a tax - similar to a Superfund tax placed on polluters to clean up toxic waste sites - be imposed on companies that have dropped antibiotic research. It would support drugmakers that are still in the game. "Your products that you've made billions and billions and billions and billions of dollars on have created this problem, and you can't just walk away," he said.

Rice has stressed that the existing arsenal of antibiotics should be used wisely, and that often means sparingly. During a half century of antibiotic use, he said, there is scant research on how short a course of drugs is actually needed to cure a patient. Instead, doctors routinely prescribe a week to 10-day course of drugs recommended by manufacturers. If patients are taking antibiotics after their infections are truly gone, they are creating conditions that breed resistance. Indeed, a Dutch study showed that one kind of pneumonia can be treated just as successfully with three days of amoxicillin as with the traditional eight.

Since drug companies cannot be expected to spend money on research that could trim sales of their products, federally funded agencies such as the National Institutes of Health should do the job, Rice said in a recent interview.

He also took his own specialty to task for failing to protect the most important weapons its arsenal. Infectious disease experts at hospitals must find the "backbone" to stop other doctors from prescribing antibiotics unnecessarily, Rice said. He argued they should assert their authority to control antibiotic usage, just as cancer specialists have a say in which chemotherapy drugs are prescribed by surgeons.

And all health care professionals, he added, "have to wash their damn hands."


How to get involved
What: The STARR Act, a bill sponsored by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, was introduced last fall to address the problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and to spur development of new drugs.

To learn more: Go to links.sfgate.com/ZCEF.

Want to tell your representatives in the U.S. Senate or the House of Representatives how you stand on the STARR Act?

Call Sen. Barbara Boxer at her Washington office at (202) 224-3553 or her San Francisco office at (415) 403-0100, or e-mail her by going to links.sfgate.com/ZCEK.

Call Sen. Dianne Feinstein at her Washington office at (202) 224-3841 or her San Francisco office at (415) 393-0707, or find her e-mail address at links.sfgate.com/ZCEL.

Contact information for your House representative can be found at links.sfgate.com/ZCEJ.

Online resources
A support resource created by MRSA patients is at:


For more information: