Category Archives: Clinical pathology

Includes news relating to lab diagnosis of medical conditions.
Discipline groups are Microbiology, Immunology, Anatomical Pathology including cytopathology (cancers etc), Chemical pathology, Haematology and Laboratory management.
EXCLUDES imaging technologies.

More cancers linked to obesity: study Sarah Wiedersehn Australian Associated Press August 25, 2016

Eight additional types of cancer have been linked to obesity, providing yet another reason to maintain a healthy weight.
US researchers have found a higher body-mass index (BMI) is associated with a greater risk of stomach, liver, gall bladder, pancreas, ovary, meningioma – a type of brain tumour -, thyroid cancer and blood cancer multiple myeloma.
BMI is a measure of body fat based on a person’s weight in relation to their height.
The cancer risks associated with excess weight were similar for men and women and were consistent across geographic regions – North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
The findings, published in The New England Journal of Medicine, are based on a review of more than 1000 studies of excess weight and cancer risk analysed by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Cancer on Research (IARC), based in France.

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‘Bagpipe lung’ death prompts warning for wind musicians

ABC News | 24 August 2016

Musicians have been warned to clean their wind instruments regularly after British doctors reported that “bagpipe lung” had killed a man who inhaled fungi growing inside his pipes.

An article in the medical journal Thorax recorded the case of a 61-year-old man who played the bagpipes daily but had struggled with a dry cough and breathlessness for seven years.

His condition improved rapidly when he went on a three-month trip to Australia, leaving his bagpipes at home.

This prompted doctors treating him to take samples from inside the pipes.

These revealed a host of different fungi growing in the moist bag, neck and mouthpiece area of the instrument, which the man had been inhaling when he played.

Despite treatment, the man died in October 2014 and a post-mortem examination showed he had suffered extensive lung damage.

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Potential new test to detect serious bacterial infections including meningitis and sepsis

EurekAlert! | Kate Wighton 24 August 2016

Scientists have identified two genes that are switched on only when a child is suffering from a bacterial infection. This could allow doctors to quickly distinguish between a viral or bacterial illness, and identify early cases of potentially deadly infections.

The international team of scientists, led by researchers at Imperial College London, hope to now use the findings to develop a rapid test for use in hospitals and doctors’ surgeries.

This would enable conditions such as meningitis, septicaemia or pneumonia – which are caused by bacterial infections – to be caught more rapidly. Such a test would also prevent children with viral infections being unnecessarily prescribed antibiotics, which are only effective against bacteria. This would help combat the growing threat of antibiotic resistance.

At the moment, when a child arrives at a surgery or hospital with fever, doctors have no quick method of distinguishing whether the child is suffering from bacterial or viral illness. Diagnosis relies instead on taking a sample of blood or spinal fluid, and seeing if bacteria grow in this sample. However this can take more than 48 hours.

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New blood spot test used internationally in fight against HIV

EurekAlert! | Nathan Gill 24 August 2016

Researchers at the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at CU Anschutz have developed a technique that estimates an HIV-negative patient’s adherence to drugs prescribed to prevent HIV transmission during sex.

The test measures traces of antiretroviral drugs in a spot of dried blood to determine how much pre-exposure prophylactic, or PrEP, medicine a patient has used. Truvada, the only FDA-approved antiretroviral PrEP drug for HIV prevention, is proven more than 90 percent effective in stopping HIV transmission during sex – in those who use it consistently. The assay technique provides an objective way to tell if patients are using PrEP consistently.

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New study explains why MRSA ‘superbug’ kills influenza patients

(Rockefeller University Press 15 August 2016) Researchers have discovered that secondary infection with the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacterium (or ‘superbug’) often kills influenza patients because the flu virus alters the antibacterial response of white blood cells, causing them to damage the patients’ lungs instead of destroying the bacterium. The study, which will be published online Aug. 15 ahead of issue in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, suggests that inhibiting this response may help treat patients infected with both the flu virus and MRSA.

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Townsville hit by new flu outbreak

Townsville Bulletin Domanii Cameron 22 August 2016

A SECOND wave of influenza has struck down hundreds of Townsville residents during the last month, with doctors encouraging the sick to seek medical advice. Up until August 14, the Townsville Hospital and Health Service had recorded 422 confirmed cases of influenza.

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AMP releases new report that addresses challenges in defining clinical utility of molecular diagnostics

News Medical AMP 17 August 2016

The Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) today announced a new report that addresses the challenges in defining the clinical utility of molecular diagnostics for inherited diseases and cancer. The manuscript titled “The Spectrum of Clinical Utilities in Molecular Pathology Testing Procedures for Inherited Conditions and Cancer: A Report of the Association for Molecular Pathology” has been released online ahead of publication in the September 2016 issue of the Journal of Molecular Diagnostics.

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