Sunday, September 30, 2012

Polypills: Doctors’ Attempt to Get Rich Without Working

Gaia Health
by Heidi Stevenson

One Pill to rule them all, One Pill to find them, One Pill to bring them all and in the darkness bind them - In the Land of Pharma where the Biggest Profits lie. This is polypharmacy, coming soon to your native land.

Using only the highest-sounding phraseology, doctors at a convention are pushing the polypill, a combination of drugs they want to push on every single person upon reaching a certain age. They bemoan the incredibly high rate of heart disease, calling it the single greatest epidemic the world has ever known.

Reporting for heartwire in One pill to cure them all: Single-drug polypharmacy in cardiovascular disease, Michael O’Riordan quotes Dr. Salim Yusuf, who organized the conference, Global Summit on Combination Polypharmacy for Cardiovascular Disease, as saying:

This is not about a pill. This is about a strategy to reduce cardiovascular disease by 50% globally in a cost-effective manner.

If you believe that, then you probably believe all the lies told about statins, one of the drugs to be included in the polypill, a drug that is now well discounted as both ineffective and carrying devastating adverse effects. Aspirin is another one of the drugs planned for a polypill, and that, too, has been documented as doing more harm than good. There’s talk of including an ACE inhibitor, aspirin, and folic acid (a vitamin!), too.

The entire concept behind polypharmacy consists of one enormous error. The simple fact is that health is not found in a pill.

Of course, these people have no sense of humor. How else could they have chosen a convention name like “One pill to cure them all”? It sounds like Tolkien’s Sauron, ruler of The Ring Trilogy’s Mordor:

One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

Could that be what they’re after—world domination?

The Driver—Profits

By the way, lest anyone suggest that there’s any motive behind any of this beyond profit, please take note of the fact that the term polypill is trademarked. So, I’ll stop using it here. From this point, the term of use will be polypharmacy.

They’re making all sorts of wild claims, saying that polypharmacy could reduce heart disease by 88% and strokes by 80%. These claims are based on … hot air! The reality is that none of these things, with the possible exception of folic acid, has ever been shown to provide genuine benefit—especially in the case of people who do not already suffer from heart disease. And this doesn’t even consider the enormous array of adverse effects these drugs produce individually. Routine aspirin use causes death from gastrointestinal bleeding. Statins do incredible amounts of harm, including memory loss, diabetes, liver and muscle damage, and death. ACE inhibitors can cause hyperkalemia—excess potassium—which can be deadly, leading to kidney failure.

There’s a dearth of serious drug development in the pipeline. Therefore, Big Pharma has been running like mad trying to find alternatives. Polypharmacy is a major play. Even though the drugs in the pill will be well known and likely even generic, having run out their exclusivity time granted by patents, by combining them into a new product they can get a new patent. Voila! Bunches more money can be made off the same old drugs.

The Target

But polypharmacy for heart disease has even more going for it. It’s being billed as a pill for everyone, something to be prescribed automatically, whether an individual already has signs of heart disease or has simply reached a certain age.

What makes polypharmacy so nice for doctors when faced with a patient who presents with vascular symptoms is that the effort is removed. No longer will they need to consider just which pill in their lexicon fits that particular patient. They can simply prescribe the same thing to everyone, a single pill that contains it all.

In the case of people who are just getting up in years, modern medicine has decided that they are, by definition, sick. Rather than figuring out exactly what they need, all a doctor must do is write out a prescription for a multi-pill.

Say! I can see another area for money making. Some clever entrepreneur can set up shop designing and printing all the zillions of identical prescriptions, with everything already made out. All the physician needs to do is enter the patient’s name and date, then send ‘em off to fill it. Since the docs are so eager to make more money while doing less work, this should be a big winner.

And then there’s polypharmacy for lazy patients. Just take Dr. Richard Smith, a former editor of the BMJ, who’s quoted by heartwire as saying:

If I had to go to the doctor every three months to get my blood pressure measured and my lipids measured and have to go back to have my drugs titrated, I couldn’t be bothered with all that. Because I get [my polypills] through the post, and I just take it every night, it’s extremely simple.

It’s just so much more convenient. Take a pill very day, close your eyes and hold your breath, and maybe you’ll just magically never have a heart attack or stroke. Doctors can sit back in confidence, knowing that they’ve got all the bases covered, and they don’t even need to think.

But Big Pharma’s the really big winner. They get to recycle all sorts of old drugs, giving them a new lease on life as patented medicines. Better yet, all the doctors will be handing them out like candy.

There’s so much greed … ummm, that is, there’s so much concern among polypharmacy proponents that countries won’t approve their pet pill combos soon enough, so they’re considering going to the World Health Organization (WHO) to arrange getting polypharmacy pills on the “Essential Medicines” list. The WHO describes the list like this:

The Model List is a guide for the development of national and institutional essential medicine lists. It was not designed as a global standard. However, for the past 30 years the Model List has led to a global acceptance of the concept of essential medicines as a powerful means to promote health equity.

As anyone who has followed these issues in the last few years is aware, there is no need to require a policy. The WHO’s placement of a drug on a list is all that’s necessary to put immense pressure on governments to conform. It’s much the same as Codex Alimentarius rules. They don’t enforce the rules themselves, but treaties end up doing the dirty work for them.

These doctors and Big Pharma are going for the gold. They’re taking these drugs that have provided little or no benefit but produce immense harm, combining them into single new polypharmacy pills, and will push them on the people with all the alacrity they have at their disposal.

One Pill to rule them all, One Pill to find them, One Pill to bring them all and in the darkness bind them In the Land of Pharma where the Biggest Profits lie.

This is polypharmacy, coming soon to your native land.


Wide Awake News
by Sharry Edwards, MEd.

Are pesticide resistant seeds responsible for cell signaling malfunctions?

The August 14th, 2010 issue of Science News, ”Separating wheat from chaff in celiac disease”, reported that a research team led by gastroenterologist Robert Anderson of the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Parkville, Australia, had identified specific triggers (gluten sensitivities) associated with celiac disease.

These following observations are based on the mathematical matrix of BioAcoustic Biology developed over the last twenty years by the Sound Health Research Center located in Albany, Ohio, USA. The system allows for the evaluation of any aspect of the body and biochemistry in terms of numeric pathways, aka Frequency Equivalents™.

Research efforts at the Institute of BioAcoustic Biology often evaluate clients who exhibit gluten sensitivity along with a myriad of associated diseases. In light of this new information it was imperative that this data be added to their analytical software databases. The three proteins identified by the Anderson study were translated into BioAcoustic bio-frequency biomarkers*. The resulting numeric matrix showed that the metabolic pathways influenced by these proteins were linked to nearly all systems of the human body; causing immune distortion, acute cellular inflammation and disruptions in cell communication.

The original article listed three proteins, w-5 gliadin (wheat), g-3 hordein (barley) and g secalins (rye) that were implicated in the production of specific anti-gliadin antibody reactions. These proteins, which have been proven to be responsible for allergic reactions, are associated with grain glutens from which they are derived.

Patent records indicated many grains seeds being produced for market are GMO’s developed and patented by a multinational agricultural biotech conglomerate that is attempting to make their grains impervious to weed killers. Could this confirm that the present day epidemic of grain related sensitivities/allergies stem from laboratory modified seeds?

These distorted, allergy causing, “engineered” grains are being used to create foods that we eat everyday; bread, cereals, chips, crackers, pastry, seasonings, even some packaged chip products contain gluten. BioAcoustic Biology matrix correlations revealed how thoroughly our health is being negatively influenced by these genetically modified foods (GMO’s).

Further investigation revealed that the engineered grains contain two substitutions that distorted the way the body processes two sulfur rich amino acids: proline and glutamine. Disturbances in these amino acid substitutions result in the impedance of the methylation of these two essential nutrients.

BioAcoustically speaking, Glutamine distortions seem to be the most destructive. The enzyme required to utilize glutamine is glutamate decarboxylase (GAD). Glutamate is a key molecule in cellular metabolism and the most abundant excitatory neurotransmitter in a vertebrate nervous system.

In mammals, GAD exists in two isoforms encoded by two different genes - Gad1 and Gad2. GAD1 and GAD2 are expressed in the brain where GABA is used as a neurotransmitter; GAD2 is also expressed in the pancreas.

This led to an evaluation of the GAD genomes and what happens when these genes are activated:

Glutamate decarboxylase aka glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) is an enzyme that catalyzes the decarboxylation (part of the process of breaking down for use by the body) of glutamate to GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid) and CO2.

GABA is a natural tranquilizer and an important inhibitory neurotransmitter that helps regulate neuron activity and the body’s nanosensors. Starting with the GAD enzyme response and moving toward GABA in conjunction with the active form of B6 (PLP), the nanotransmitters of the body are created and regulated. The movement of electrical energy and hence magnetic potential within the body are controlled by these nanotransmitters.

GAD uses PLP (pyridoxal 50-phosphate) as a cofactor. PLP was granted a patent by the US government patent office to the Canadian company, Medicure. PLP is now under the control of the pharmaceutical industry and its lack is often associated with blood clotting distortions, migraines, neural disorders and seizures.

Nanotransmitters produced in conjunction with GAD metabolism show direct associations with a multitude of diseases: diabetes, autism, arthritis, Parkinson's, ALS, Multiple Sclerosis, joint pain and deterioration, auditory disorders, Celiac Disease, Crohns, Irritable Bowel syndrome, diverticulitis, schizophrenia, bipolar and anxiety disorders, aspartame sensitivity, MSG reactions, Lupus, Fibromyalgia, depression, seizures, brain signaling, the use of calcitonin (cancer related), histidine function (seasonal allergies), cellular inflammation and vaccination reactions.

Of particular importance is GAD’s involvement with cancer via Calcitonin, a 32–amino-acid peptide/hormone that participates in calcium and phosphorus metabolism. BioAcoustically speaking, calcitonin is a major player in the role of how the body handles any cancer threat.

Parkinson’s is an incurable, debilitating disease that also shows GAD involvement. The activity of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), the enzyme involved in formation of the inhibitory neurotransmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), was studied in autopsy brain samples from six Parkinson's patients and 13 controls. The activity of GAD was significantly reduced in brain samples of patients with Parkinson’s disease, being about 50 percent of that in controls. Moreover, levodopa treatment showed a tendency to increase the activity of GAD. The results suggest the involvement of GABA neurons in Parkinson’s disease.

A search of the GAD literature stated that acetylcholine, γ-aminobutyric acid, dopamine, calcitonin gene-related peptides, choline acetyltransferase and enkephalins are involved with the metabolism of GAD. It would be important to include these biochemicals when testing subjects for GAD presence and methylation.

Glutamate is the same Frequency Equivalent* as aspartame and is part of MSG (mono-sodium glutamate). James Oschman in his publication, Energy Medicine, states that cells emit frequency-based signals as a request for needed biochemicals to gather at the site where they are needed. Since Glutamate and Aspartame are the same frequency, this may explain why Aspartame has been implicated in so many muscle and joint disorders.

MSG is also used as a stabilizer in some vaccines. This could account for the reported increase in autism associated vaccination damage.

“This may be one of the decade’s most important ‘connections’ between food and genetics. By showing the frequency relationships among substances normally found in healthy people, you have confirmed that the potential for GMO harm is very real,” states Ralph Fucetola, JD and health freedom advocate.

Sharry Edwards, the recognized pioneer of this emerging technology states, “I expect this information will be the impetus that opens the world to the potential of BioAcoustic Biology and the hope of allowing access to Self Health care via easy-to-use software; even after the appearance of a disease process”.

From the original Science News article:

“Three protein fragments are looking like the guilty parties in celiac disease, an intestinal ailment that affects as many as one in 133 people in the United States. These partial proteins, or peptides, are the part of gluten in wheat, rye and barley that triggers the immune systems of celiac patients, damaging the small intestine. An Australian research team reports the new findings in the July 21 Science Translational Medicine.”

“This is an impressive and very comprehensive study,” says immunologist Ludvig Sollid of the University of Oslo. “The authors find that most celiac patients make a response to these three gluten peptides.”

Questions: Are GMO producers aware of the damage to health that is being caused? Shouldn’t those with cell signaling issues be warned about ingesting these glutens? Why are GMO producers and the US government boldly attempting to prevent package warnings that would notify people that they were eating GMO products? Is it greed, ignorance or a misguided attempt to improve our food supply that is in fact poisoning our food, our population, and our genetic pool? Is this assault on our food supply intentionally creating a future that will keep us ill and medication dependent?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Russian authorities suspend imports of Monsanto corn

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

A Russian government watchdog agency has called for the suspension of a Monsanto-developed corn after a controversial French study, published last week, said lab rats that ingested the corn developed tumors and died prematurely.

The agency, which is known as Rospotrebnadzor, and is the consumer rights arm of the Russian Ministry of Health, said that government scientists have been asked to scrutinize the study. In the meantime imports of the corn, known as NK603, will be banned.

Last week French authorities also called on regulators to further investigate the study, which was performed by researchers at the University of Caen, in Normandy. The European Food Safety Authority said it also will review the research.

In an email response, Tom Helscher, a spokesman for Monsanto, wrote Tuesday: “We do not believe the recent French research findings present information that justifies any change in the safety determination for NK603 or its approval status for imports. The safety of NK603 is well established as reflected in the respective safety assessments by regulatory authorities around the world.”

The study, released last Wednesday, analyzed 200 rats over a two-year period. Some groups were given the genetically modified corn, some were given the corn treated with Monsanto's herbicide, Roundup, and some were given Roundup in their water. The study found that the rats in these groups developed organ damage and tumors, and died faster, than those not treated with the corn or herbicide.

The study immediately sparked controversy, with the biotechnology industry, scientists and research organizations calling into question the scope of the work and the methodologies. Several scientists pointed out that the type of rats used in the study were already highly susceptible to tumors.

Many researchers pointed out that the authors asked reporters to sign documents saying they would not consult outside experts before the publication of the study – a sign, critics said, that the authors felt it would not hold up to outside scrutiny.

Supporters of the work, however, pointed out that it was the longest-ever feeding study performed on rats, far exceeding the length of the 90-day studies performed to gain market approval, in which the same type of rats were used. They also underscored that the treated rats, despite the tumor-prone type used in the study, developed tumors at a higher rate than the non-treated rats.

Proponents of more extensive testing on genetically modified foods said the terms under which the study was released to reporters were designed to ensure that the industry did not debunk the research upon its publication, in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology.

The terms, explained Andrew Kimbrell of the advocacy group, The Center for Food Safety, were based "in the legitimate fear of Monsanto consistently, over many years, trying to suppress science that is contrary to their corporate interests". The company, Kimbrell added, "would have done a massive preemptive PR job prior to publication."

Controlling Slugs with Coffee Grounds Is Criminal in the EU

Gaia Health
by Heidi Stevenson

The EU believes in magic! Forget about the claims of adhering to science. In the EU, coffee grounds are transmuted from benign to poisonous by saying so.

Organic gardeners avoid using toxic pesticides, so often resort to more difficult but entirely safe methods of dealing with pests. A tried-and-true method of dealing with slugs is to surround plants with used coffee grounds. But in the European Union, gardeners who use that method are breaking the law!

The EU has decided that anything used to control pests must be approved—and coffee grounds have not gone through the approval process. That, of course, will likely never happen. To be approved as a pesticide, a product must go through extensive and extremely expensive testing for effectiveness and its harms on the environment, people, and animals. Who has the money to do that, other than corporations?

Is is, therefore, illegal for individuals to use coffee grounds for slug control. Only products that have been approved as pesticides may be used. It matters not how obviously safe it is—especially in comparison with Agribusiness’s toxic soup of pesticides. And, of course, the pseudo science of corporations has figured out how to game the system. As a result, we now live with the utter insanity of deadly toxic pesticides sold everywhere, while gardeners can be prosecuted for avoiding them by using coffee grounds!

Pseudo Logic and Pseudo Science

According to Dr. Andrew Halstead, principal scientist of plant health at the UK’s Royal Horticultural Society (RHS):

Anything that has not been through the system is illegal to use as a pesticide, however safe that chemical is perceived to be.… … This may all sound rather daft, but the intention of the pesticides legislation is to prevent people from applying untested dangerous chemicals. However, the chances of being prosecuted for scattering coffee grounds in a garden are, I suspect, remote.

Considering how governments have been taking over control of every facet of life, Halstead may be naive about the potential for prosecution. We are now seeing time-honored natural health products disappearing from store shelves because the EU hasn’t approved them. In the US, health food stores and raw milk farmers are being subjected to full-fledged SWAT operations. They’re guilty of only one thing: daring to continue to provide healthy and safe products that people want.

People do not benefit from such tight-fisted regulation of crop-growing methods that makes everything illegal unless specifically authorized. Coffee grounds are illegal for repelling slugs, but metaldehydes are legal, in spite of severe toxicity that can result in loss of bowel and bladder control, muscle tremors, cyanosis, acidosis, and death.

How can anyone suggest with a straight face that the EU’s restrictive laws on natural products, including the use of organic gardening methods, exist to benefit the people? It’s absolutely ludicrous. Our most basic rights—rights more basic than free speech and freedom of assembly, rights so basic no one could ever have thought to enumerate them—are being stripped away. The right to choose our own food is rapidly disappearing, The right even to grow it is fading. It’s being done to benefit multinational corporations, the fronts for the obscenely wealthy elite, the richest one-tenth of one percent of the people.

Multinational corporations benefit from these medieval-like restrictions on our freedoms. Organic gardening—indeed, any private production of food—represents only one thing to these monstrosities of pseudo-food production: competition. The governmental agencies that supposedly exist for the protection of the people have been taken over. They exist to strip people’s freedom of choice to only those things that have been determined to benefit corporate profits.

Twisted Logic

Lest anyone believe that there’s still a possibility that the EU is actually looking out for our well-being, note Dr. Halstead’s comment:

If you were to use coffee grounds around plants with the intention of providing some organic matter in the form of a mulch, rather than as a slug control or deterrent, then the regulations relating to pesticides would not apply.

That’s right, if you use coffee grounds as mulch around plants, it’s perfectly legal! By some twisted bureaucratic pseudo logic, it’s still okay (For how long?) to spread coffee grounds around your plants if you do it to improve the soil. There is really only one conclusion to be drawn from this: If the government says that a product is toxic when it’s used for one purpose, but consider it perfectly safe when used for another purpose, then the government is serving a master other than the people.

Apparently, the EU has written Laws of Transmutation, whereby substances can be transformed from one thing to another simply by willing it. Thus, coffee grounds are transformed from safe and legal to dangerous and criminal if used for repelling slugs instead of mulching soil.

Yes, the EU believes in magic! Forget about their claims of adhering to science. In the EU, coffee grounds are transmuted from benign to poisonous by the simple act of saying, “But, I’m not using coffee grounds to get rid of slugs. I’m using them to mulch the soil!”

Marijuana Compound Found Superior To Drugs For Alzheimer's

by Sayer Ji

Could the active ingredient in marijuana, responsible for its characteristic "high," help turn the tide against the accelerating Alzheimer's epidemic?

A remarkable study published in the journal Molecular Pharmacology in 2006, found that this long vilified plant contains a compound with not one, but two therapeutic properties ideal for addressing both the surface symptom (memory problems) and root cause (brain plaque) of Alzheimer's disease.[i] This is an ironic finding, considering that the prevailing stereotype is that using marijuana "fries" the brain, leading to debilitating memory issues.

Researchers discovered that the psychoactive component of marijuana, Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), both "competitively inhibits the enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE) as well as prevents AChE-induced amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) aggregation."

On the first account, THC's ability to inhibit the AChE enzyme, is not unlike the mechanism of action behind most Alzheimer's drugs on the market today. Drugs like donepezil (trade name Aricept), for instance, by targeting and inhibiting the brain enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE), result in an increase in brain levels of this neurotransmitter, which in turn, results in symptom reduction, i.e. improved memory. Donepezil, however, is riddled with controversy due its well-known association with seizures, which likely reflects its intrinsic neurotoxicity. It is, in fact, a chemical in the same general chemical class as venom, insecticides and chemical war agents, such as nerve gas.

On the second account, THC's ability to prevent the acetylcholinesterase-associated amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) aggregation, i.e. brain plaque, indicates that it may, as the researchers noted, "directly impact Alzheimer's disease pathology." In fact, they found "Compared to currently approved drugs prescribed for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, THC is a considerably superior inhibitor of Aβ aggregation, and this study provides a previously unrecognized molecular mechanism through which cannabinoid molecules may directly impact the progression of this debilitating disease."

What is so encouraging about this research, and which the researchers described as "noteworthy," is the following:

THC is a considerably more effective inhibitor of AChE-induced Aβ deposition than the approved drugs for Alzheimer's disease treatment, donepezil and tacrine, which reduced Aβ aggregation by only 22% and 7%, respectively, at twice the concentration used in our studies.7 Therefore, AChE inhibitors such as THC and its analogues may provide an improved therapeutic for Alzheimer's disease, augmenting acetylcholine levels by preventing neurotransmitter degradation and reducing Aβ aggregation, thereby simultaneously treating both the symptoms and progression of Alzheimer's disease.

THC, of course, is only one of a wide range of cannabinoids in the plant marijuana. Not only is there already plentiful information on the neuroprotective properties of marijuana compounds, but there is also a sizeable body of clinical and/or biomedical research indicating the medicinal value of this plant in over 150 health conditions. To view this research visit our Medical Marijuana Research page.

Scientists discover molecular link between circadian clock disturbances and inflammatory diseases

Science Blog

Scientists have known for some time that throwing off the body’s circadian rhythm can negatively affect body chemistry. In fact, workers whose sleep-wake cycles are disrupted by night shifts are more susceptible to chronic inflammatory diseases such as diabetes, obesity and cancer.

Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have now found a possible molecular link between circadian rhythm disturbances and an increased inflammatory response. In a study published July 9 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the Salk team found that the absence of a key circadian clock component called cryptochrome (CRY) leads to the activation of a signaling system that elevates levels of inflammatory molecules in the body.

“There is compelling evidence that low-grade, constant inflammation could be the underlying cause of chronic diseases such as diabetes, obesity and cancer,” says senior author Inder Verma, a professor in Salk’s Laboratory of Genetics and the Irwin and Joan Jacobs Chair in Exemplary Life Science. “Our results strongly indicate that an arrhythmic clock system, induced by the absence of CRY proteins, alone is sufficient to increase the stress level of cells, leading to the constant expression of inflammatory proteins and causing low-grade, chronic inflammation.” Cryptochrome serves as a break to slow the circadian clock’s activity, signaling our biological systems to wind down each evening. In the morning, CRY stops inhibiting the clock’s activity, helping our physiology ramp up for the coming day.

To gain insight into the role of circadian clock components on immune function, the Salk scientists measured the expression of inflammatory mediators in the hypothalamus (the area of the brain responsible for sleep-wake cycle regulation) of mice with deleted CRY genes. Through a variety of tests, these knockout mice showed a significant increase in the expression of certain inflammatory proteins known as cytokines, including interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor-α, compared to mice with CRY genes.

“Our findings demonstrate that a lack of cryptochrome activates these proinflammatory molecules, indicating a potential role for cryptochrome in the regulation of inflammatory cytokine expression,” says Satchidananda Panda, an associate professor in Salk’s Regulatory Biology Laboratory and one of the senior authors of the study. In addition, the researchers found that a lack of CRY activated the NF-kB pathway, a molecular signaling conduit that controls many genes involved in inflammation. NF-kB is a protein complex in a cell’s cytoplasm, “just happily doing nothing,” says Verma. In response to stimuli, it is transferred to the cell’s nucleus, where it binds to inflammation genes and turns them on. The regulation of these genes is tightly controlled, but NF-kB does not completely shut off their expression. This lingering expression causes inflammation.

Every time this pathway is turned on, there is a residual amount of inflammation left in the body,” says Rajesh Narasimamurthy, a research associate in Verma’s laboratory and the paper’s first author. “That adds up over time, contributing to inflammation-related diseases like obesity and diabetes.”

Previous research has shown that suppressing the activity of the NF-kB pathway might be a suitable therapy for some diseases. For example, NF-kB is activated automatically in cancer cells of multiple myeloma, which affects infection-fighting plasma cells in the bone marrow and allows the cells to proliferate. Drugs that inhibit this activity might be able to degrade NF-kB to the point that it may kill off the disease.

The researchers say the goal now is to find out how to suppress NF-kB activation in the short term to treat diseases like diabetes. They caution that any long-term suppression of the pathway could lead to chronic infection. “We would like to find molecules that modify this activity and focus on those small-molecule inhibitors to treat disease,” Verma adds.

Monday, September 24, 2012

An Inconvenient Tooth - Fluoride Documentary

An Inconvenient Tooth is a documentary film about fluoride. It was released September 6th, 2012 at the city hall in Portland, Oregon. 

Study Reveals That 1 in 10 Teens Suffers from Liver Disease

by Heidi Stevenson

A shocking report shows that one in ten American teens are now suffering from liver disease—a direct result of the distortion and pollution of our food system that allows fructose to be treated as if it's perfectly safe.

In a shocking report that bodes ill for the future health of the generation now entering adulthood, ten percent of today's teens in the United States suffers from nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).

Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) was examined by Marilyn Vos of Emery University. NHANES recorded data on 10,359 teenagers aged 12-18 from 1988-2008. Vos and co-researchers found that 9.9% have NAFLD.

Even more ominously, Vos stated that NAFLD "seems to be increasing faster than the prevalence of obesity." Previously, the disease has been very closely associated with obesity. Now, though, it's clear that there's more than excess weight driving the increase in liver disease.

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is known to be associated with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Now that we're seeing this once-rare disorder affecting one in ten teenagers, one must wonder how health agencies like the FDA can continue to ignore the devastation resulting from out-of-control Agribusiness, which is clearly profiting from the devastation of the people's health.

Instead, though, Dr. Vos is advocating the creation of community and school programs to promote healthy food, exercise, and weight loss. This is not addressing the root cause. It is, in fact, effectively blaming the victims for their poor health.

Difficulty Avoiding Fructose

The fact is that it's becoming more and more difficult to obtain a healthy diet. Our society is now designed around the dictates of Agribusiness. Go into any supermarket and you will see aisle after aisle of prepared foods. If you read package ingredients, it's horrifying to see that most of it contains massive amounts of sugar, fructose, and artificial sweeteners—not to mention all the other toxic ingredients.

Too many of today's harassed and stressed parents often find it difficult, both in terms of finances and time, to provide decent diets for their children. Even those who manage to find the time and money to provide good food often don't know what it is, since they've never seen it themselves and the agencies that should be providing information often produce lies. The FDA classifies fructose as GRAS—generally recognized as safe.

As a result, HFCS and other forms of fructose are found in nearly every type of product on supermarket shelves, including ones that aren't supposed to be sweet. It's replacing sugar in candies and soft drinks, so children in particular are at risk. Avoiding it means avoiding nearly all prepared foods, including ones intended to aid in home cooking, like bottled sauces.

Fructose Metablism

Fructose is not metabolized in the same way that glucose (regular sugar) is, so treating it as equivalent is absurd:

Fructose is metabolized completely by the liver, but only 20% of glucose metabolism is by the liver. This adds to the load that the liver must carry.

Fructose results in storing three times more fat than glucose, thus fueling the obesity epidemic.

Fructose is probably the culprit behind a serious increase in gout because its metabolism creates uric acid. The truth is that fructose consumed outside of fruit, where it's tightly bound and therefore released slowly during digestion, is creating havoc with people's health. It's obviously a major factor in the health destruction of at least one in ten teens. These young people face severely shortened lives with tragically limited options because of ill health.

Fructose Damage

NAFLD affects the liver's ability to perform many critical functions, including regulation of blood glucose and cholesterol, fat burning, metabolism of hormones, vitamin A storage, and elimination of toxins, which is of course, becoming a more and more critical function in this increasingly polluted world.

Fatty liver disease leads to diabetes, hepatitis, cirrhosis, and cancer. It also means that overall health of the entire body is harmed, so that the victim's enjoyment of life is proscribed.

Nonetheless, there is no attempt to address the cause, Agribusiness that's run so rampant it can control nearly all aspects of our access to food. Instead, researchers who clearly document how rampant NAFLD is—to the point that one-tenth of teens are now sick with it—prefer to focus on the creation of ever-more government programs that will drain ever-more money from the populace and won't do a bit of good.

FDA Looking to Ban B6 Supplements, Give Boost to Big Pharma

Natural Society
by Elizabeth Renter

Vitamin B6, naturally present in a variety of foods, is necessary for proper nerve function, protein synthesis, regulating blood sugar, and producing antibodies and hemoglobin. In other words, it’s pretty important stuff. But, while many people get their B6 through supplements, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is looking to make things a lot more difficult—by slowly taking all forms of B6 supplements off the market so Big Pharma can make millions off of prescriptions instead.

According to the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH), the FDA has already begun their crusade. They removed Pyridoxamine (a natural form of B6) supplements from the market at the request of BioStratum, a pharmaceutical company. Why? Because BioStratum thinks it might be nice to use Pyrdoxamine in a prescription drug. They haven’t developed the drug, we don’t know what it is, and who knows when it will come to fruition, but the FDA honored a request from the big corporation to protect the company’s interest.

Now, the FDA is poised to pull another B6 product: P5P.

You see, the human body must convert B6 to P5P to make it usable within the body. Fortunately, some supplement companies have created P5P and it is currently available as a natural supplement. But, another pharmaceutical giant has petitioned the FDA to “protect its interests”.

Medicure Pharma would like all P5P removed from the supplement market so they can begin to work on a drug containing the crucial form of B6. In their petition, they state:

“Pharmaceutical companies developing new drugs must be protected from companies that may seek to market the ingredients in those drugs as dietary supplements. The marketing of such products has the potential to undermine the incentive for the development of new drugs because many people may choose to purchase the supplements rather than the drugs.”

So, that basically sums it up. In order to protect the money-grabbing interests of this company, at whatever risk to the health of the general public, the federal government should step in and take the supplements out. I suppose that line of thought makes sense if you are a top official with Medicure Pharma.

But, the FDA has not yet honored the ANH’s petition yet concerning the B6 supplements. And while the FDA doesn’t always care what is in the best interest of the people, we hope that by joining the ANH, we can make our voices heard.

You can help. Contact the FDA and Congress today and let them know that not all consumers are interested in drugs over supplements. You can find a petition here on the Alliance for Natural Health’s website.

— Two other equally upsetting cases come to mind. Through examining and following the FDA’s decisions, anyone can see that the organization continuously pushes pharmaceutical drugs while censoring health food and supplements and their ability to heal. Such is the case with a company known as Fleminger, Inc. and their green tea product, where the FDA threatened to seize Fleminger Inc.’s products, in addition to making them completely change their claim statement. The company claimed green tea reduces the risk of breast and prostate cancer, so the FDA insisted they use the claim:

“Green tea may reduce the risk of breast or prostate cancer. FDA does not agree that green tea may reduce the risk because there is very little scientific evidence for the claim.”

In another situation, claims made by Diamond Foods that omega-3′s found in walnuts produce health benefits make their walnuts “drugs”. As far as the FDA is concerned, these “drugs” can not be legally marketed in the United States without an approved new drug application.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Religious Exemptions to Vaccines are Life or Death Rights

Activist Post
by Sandor White

Over many years, the media and corporations have mounted a concerted effort to demean religious faith and to portray certain religious groups as dangerous to modern society. Darwin and evolution are often the means, pitting "modern science" against "religious dogma."

The problem is that "science" has become the pawn of the corporations. People are recognizing that very keenly as they watch the endless lies by Monsanto about genetically engineered food be exposed.

A recent Stanford "study," blasted all over the country by media, purporting to show that organic food is no different from pesticide-ridden crops, is a prime example, with only a bit of investigating revealing that the person behind the study had once done bogus studies for the Tobacco Industry as well. The study is so loose with reality that it even says agribusiness "slows pace of global warming" even though agribusiness's seeds (and the pharmaceutical industries vaccines and pills) are based on petrochemicals, central to driving global warming.

Science is being cavalierly twisted by the corporations and media, and in a direction that is anti-life. One of the most important protections people have against such falsehoods is, ironically, religious belief.

That belief is meant to be based on conscience and morality. It was the truth-filled, loving force that rid India of the British Empire. It was a strong force against the Vietnam War as priests were willing to go to jail to stop it. It is a force in Burma where Buddhist monks have stood against a repressive government. It is a force in Tibet now as monks have burned themselves to death in response to the totalitarian Chinese rule attempting to stamp out religious life there. There has been a demonization of those opposed to abortion, but has anyone stopped to think what it would mean for this culture to be fine with killing fetuses, not faced with the moral questions raised by those arguing we have no right to take a life?

Right now, true concern for health is being ignored by the WHO, which has turned its back on 47,500 children paralyzed by Bill Gates' polio campaign in India as well as children damaged or killed in Pakistan. The WHO, the World Bank and Gates are using media to tell the world that the vaccines are eliminating polio, when in fact the scientific community has known for 10 years that it can never be eliminated now that the biotech industry has synthesized the virus (which is twice as deadly as wild polio). Corporate media is a means to seek funds to continue this catastrophe, even suggesting American women personally participate, and to hide from the world that, in fact, polio is being systematically spread across Asia and Africa.

When imams in Africa or groups in Asia object to vaccines, worried that children are being crippled and dying, media is used to assault them for being anti-science, anti-progress, and often imply religious stupidity. Yet it was a religious group that exposed the reality of tetanus vaccines being used to sterilize people.

Americans are aware that the country is being plundered - losing its homes, its jobs, its farms, its access to real food, its economy, its rights - by politicians and corporations both operating without moral values. Americans' bodies are also under assault. If those bodies can be made ill, they become the source, over a lifetime of sickness, of a fortune for corporations selling vaccines.

This is another form of the Idiot Cycle, in which the companies which sicken people with their toxins then provide the "medicines" to treat those illnesses.

Religious belief is a sizable roadblock to such power, and when it comes to vaccines, it is precisely moral commitment to the life of children and of their community that has stood in the way. That morality often (though not solely) comes from religious belief.

In that context, it is vital to note what is occurring in the US in terms of efforts to undermine religious rights.

The religious exemption to vaccination is now under heavy attack across the country. In the video below, Barbara Loe Fisher, co-founder of the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), discusses this important exemption, and why it's so vital we defend our right to opt out of vaccinations for medical, religious, or conscientious belief reasons. All Americans need to know their options for legally opting-out of vaccinations, and you also need to know why it's so important to protect this legal option, whether you choose to use every federally recommended vaccine for yourself and your children or not.

The Nuremberg Code was established after the Holocaust to prevent the pharmaceutical industry from ever again forcing "medical procedures" on people against their wil. It is this defense against such industry power that is under attack. Without exemptions, people would be forced to submit their children to vaccines (and perhaps submit themselves if laws are written to include adults). As it is becoming clear the vaccines are actually causing diseases, people are also recognizing that there is profit in diseases (the article is by a Jewish cardiologist).

People, faced with the thought that vaccines may not in fact be the saving miracle of modern medicine, often fall back on what they have been told about the polio and smallpox vaccines as evidence of people's lives being saved. Polio and smallpox are the big threats that leave people vulnerable to doing whatever the government says if thet announce an outbreak of some infectious disease. Yet what we were told about the polio vaccine is as false as what we have been told about the Smallpox vaccine. We have been fed fear on a steady basis so the public will be willing to submit to whatever "solution" is suggested.

West Nile virus is the latest such scare, with people being told it's incurable and that spraying of toxic chemicals to kill mosquitoes must be done. Yet West Nile virus has never even been isolated and may actually be a collections of symptoms related to toxins (in which case spraying more is an even more terrible idea that people know it already is), and there is cure but it has been suppressed (as was an easy cure for polio).

(In fact, there is a proven cure for over 70 infectious diseases - meningitis, anthrax, hepatitis, dengue, West Nile, polio, swine flu, etc. See this video), making vaccines obsolete, even if they weren't dangerous.)

What if a Smallpox outbreak (or any other disease) were announced and the CDC said everyone must get the vaccine? Here is where religious exemptions become vital as a means to refuse, for the CDC has admitted the small pox vaccine caused Smallpox. And in addition, the CDC has admitted the vaccine causes heart problems and warns people should not get it if (quote):

You have been told by a doctor that you have high blood pressure.
You have been told by a doctor that you have high blood cholesterol.
You have been told by a doctor that you have diabetes or high blood sugar.
You have a first degree relative (for example mother, father, brother, or sister) who had a heart condition before the age of 50.

Powerful governments have a long history of undermining religious belief. In its quiet way, such beliefs stand against power and support the moral life and spiritual grounding of human beings. "Science" captured by corporations has been used to demean religious belief. Those same corporations have used media to promote vaccines, to cover up crippling and deaths, and to suppress actual cures. So human thoughts based on moral beliefs are vital protection for life. The assault on religious exemptions for vaccines is meant to remove morality as a roadblock to profits.

Just as morality in general is critical to maintain and even to expand, so too are religious exemptions. Some people may use such exemptions to say "No" to vaccines because they believe they violate a deeply held religious conviction that the body is a blessed gift from God and may not be intruded on by a government. Some may say "No" to being experimented on based on a historical awareness that the pharmaceutical industry worked to develop a means to sterilize people at doctor's appointments without their knowing. Others may fight for religious exemption because they see the Nuremberg Code as a phoenix rising out of the Holocaust and believe it is their religious obligation to protect it ("the informed consent" of religious exemptions) as part of "Never again." Other may from religious conviction object to the immorality of an industry generating "diseases for profits."

Whatever the moral conviction, religious exemptions to vaccines are a spiritual counterbalance to power and profit, and in that, they are essential to all Americans.

Related: The Laws of the Pharmaceutical Industry

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Propaganda Update: TV Networks Will Be Asked to Boost ObamaCare In Plots of Their Top Shows

Media Research Center

Abby Goodnough of The New York Times is reporting as the California state government is setting up its ObamaCare exchange, the exchange has hired a PR firm (with federal government money).

"Realizing that much of the battle will be in the public relations realm, the exchange has poured significant resources into a detailed marketing plan — developed not by state health bureaucrats but by the global marketing powerhouse Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, which has an initial $900,000 contract with the exchange," she wrote. Ogilvy's plan is to tap major network TV shows like "Grey's Anatomy" and "Modern Family" to sell Americans on the health care law:

Hollywood, an industry whose major players have been supportive of President Obama and his agenda, will be tapped. Plans are being discussed to pitch a reality television show about “the trials and tribulations of families living without medical coverage,” according to the Ogilvy plan. The exchange will also seek to have prime-time television shows, like “Modern Family,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and Univision telenovelas, weave the health care law into their plots.

“I’d like to see 10 of the major TV shows, or telenovelas, have people talking about ‘that health insurance thing,’ ” said Peter V. Lee, the exchange’s executive director. “There are good story lines here.”

Although the exchange will not start advertising until next year, the California Endowment, a foundation that has spent $15 million promoting the law, is running newspaper and television ads, including one in which the television personality Dr. Mehmet Oz exhorts viewers to “get educated, get engaged, get enrolled.” That campaign has targeted Hispanics, who make up more than half of the state’s uninsured population.

Goodnough added "The exchange itself has so far been financed by three grants, worth $237 million, from the federal government. Most of the money is committed to consultants, including Accenture, which has a $327 million contract to build and support the initial operation of the enrollment portal."

Remember that the liberal media was furious that the federal government would promote the war in Iraq inside Iraq, and furious that the Department of Education would hire PR flacks like Armstrong Williams to talk up Bush education programs on cable news. So where is their outrage at the idea that federal grants would promote ObamaCare advertising inside network TV entertainment programs?

Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize

Elsevier - Food and Chemical Toxicology

Abstract: The health effects of a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize (from 11% in the diet), cultivated with or without Roundup, and Roundup alone (from 0.1 ppb in water), were studied 2 years in rats. In females, all treated groups died 2–3 times more than controls, and more rapidly.

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TSA naked body scanners could prove extra harmful to women with BRCA gene

Natural News

Women who possess the BRCA gene, the mutations of which are linked to so-called hereditary breast and ovarian cancers, may be particularly susceptible to the deleterious effects of ionizing radiation, suggests a fresh analysis of earlier research on the subject. According to the fresh data, women with BRCA who are exposed to diagnostic scans that emit ionizing radiation -- this includes naked body scanners at the airport -- have a significantly heightened risk of developing cancer.

Dr. Flora E. van Leeuwen, Ph.D., from the Netherlands Cancer Institute (NCI) in Amsterdam and her colleagues evaluated a series of data on cancer rates with respect to diagnostic scans like mammograms that blast women's chests with ionizing radiation, and found that any diagnostic use of radiation before age 30 increases breast cancer risk by 90 percent among carriers of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations.

Published online in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), the research also revealed that any history of mammography prior to age 30 increases cancer risk by about 43 percent. And if all women who are BRCA carriers underwent even just one mammogram before age 30, the overall number who end up developing breast cancer by age 40 would jump from nine to 14 out of every 100.

"The results support the use of non-ionizing radiation imaging techniques (such as MRI) for surveillance in young women with BRCA1/2 mutations," wrote the authors in their conclusion, affirming what earlier studies have found linking mammograms, CT scans, and other radiation-based diagnostic scans to cancer.

TSA naked body scanners are a serious cancer threat to BRCA gene carriers

What the study also suggests is that the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA)'s naked body scanners are also a serious cancer threat, particularly among young women with the BRCA gene. The TSA's backscatter version of its naked body scanner blasts a narrow beam of high-intensity radiation at travelers' bodies, which is "absorbed almost entirely by the skin and tissue directly under the skin," according to

Since young children are routinely sent through such machines as part of the TSA's digital strip search procedure, this is highly alarming, particularly for young women with the BRCA gene. Since no credible safety testing has ever been conducted on the TSA's backscatter machines, including any legitimate measure of how much radiation is actually absorbed by travelers that pass through them, there is no way to know the cumulative effects of exposure.

We do know; however, that the type of radiation emitted by backscatter naked body scanners is the same type emitted during mammography and CT scans, and potentially even in the same or higher doses. For this reason, naked body scanners are very likely just as risky for women with the BRCA gene as are diagnostic scans, which means they should be avoided at all costs.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Higher Levels of BPA in Children and Teens Significantly Associated With Obesity

Science Daily

Researchers at NYU School of Medicine have revealed a significant association between obesity and children and adolescents with higher concentrations of urinary bisphenol A (BPA), a synthetic chemical recently banned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from sippy cups and baby bottles. Still, the chemical continues to be used in aluminum cans, such as those containing soda.

The study appears in the September 19 issue of JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), dedicated to the theme of obesity.

“This is the first association of an environmental chemical in childhood obesity in a large, nationally representative sample,” said lead investigator Leonardo Trasande, MD, MPP, associate professor of pediatrics and environmental medicine. “Our findings further demonstrate the need for a broader paradigm in the way we think about the obesity epidemic. Unhealthy diet and lack of physical activity certainly contribute to increased fat mass, but the story clearly doesn’t end there.”

BPA, a low-grade estrogen, was until recently found in plastic bottles labeled with the number 7 recycling symbol, and is still used as an internal coating for aluminum cans. Manufacturers say it provides an antiseptic function, but studies have shown the chemical disrupts multiple mechanisms of human metabolism that may increase body mass. BPA exposure has also been associated with cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, prostate cancer, neurological disorders, diabetes and infertility.

“In the U.S. population, exposure [to BPA] is nearly ubiquitous, with 92.6 percent of persons 6 years or older identified in the 2003-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) as having detectable BPA levels in their urine. A comprehensive, cross-sectional study of dust, indoor and outdoor air, and solid and liquid food in preschool-aged children suggested that dietary sources constitute 99 percent of BPA exposure,” the investigators wrote.

Using a sample of nearly 3,000 children and adolescents, ages 6 through 19 years, randomly selected for measurement of urinary BPA concentration in the 2003-2008 NHANES, Dr. Trasande and his co-authors, Jan Blustein, MD, PhD, and Teresa Attina, MD, PhD, MPH, examined associations between urinary BPA concentrations and body mass.

After controlling for race/ethnicity, age, caregiver education, poverty to income ratio, sex, serum cotinine level, caloric intake, television watching, and urinary creatinine level, the researchers found children with the highest levels of urinary BPA had 2.6 times higher odds of being obese than those with the lowest measures of urinary BPA. Among the participants with the highest levels, 22.3 percent were obese compared with 10.3 percent of the participants with the lowest levels.

Further analyses showed this association to be statistically significant in only one racial subpopulation, white children and adolescents. The researchers also found that obesity was not associated with exposure to other environmental phenols commonly used in other consumer products, such as sunscreens and soaps.

“Most people agree the majority of BPA exposure in the United States comes from aluminum cans,” Dr. Trasande said. “This data adds to already existing concerns about BPA and further supports the call to limit exposure of BPA in this country, especially in children. Removing it from aluminum cans is probably one of the best ways we can limit exposure. There are alternatives that manufacturers can use to line aluminum cans.”

The researchers wrote in their study that advocates and policy makers have long been concerned about BPA exposure. “We note the recent FDA ban of BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups, yet our findings raise questions about exposure to BPA in consumer products used by older children. Last year, the FDA declined to ban BPA in aluminum cans and other food packaging, announcing ‘reasonable steps to reduce human exposure to BPA in the human food supply’ and noting that it will continue to consider evidence on the safety of the chemical. Carefully conducted longitudinal studies that assess the associations identified here will yield evidence many years in the future.”

Sunday, September 16, 2012

ANALYSIS: Are we being told the full truth about GM mosquitoes?

The Ecologist
by Helen Wallace

Promotion of GM mosquitoes as a way to tackle a tropical disease is simply part of a PR strategy intended to pave the way to a new global business selling GM agricultural pests, says Helen Wallace

In November 2010, Oxford University spin-out company Oxitec announced it had released 3 million genetically modified (GM) male mosquitoes in the Cayman Islands. Shock and surprise was muted by enthusiastic press coverage of its claims to have reduced the wild population of the Aedes aegypti species of mosquitoes by 80 per cent. This is one of two species of mosquito that can transmit the tropical disease dengue fever. In January 2011, the company submitted its results to the journal Science. This week – two years after completing the experiments – the findings have finally been published as Correspondence to the Editor of journal Nature Biotechnology.

Oxitec reports several different estimates of the temporary reduction in the wild population of mosquitoes, ranging from 60 per cent to 85 per cent. There is no baseline data on mosquito populations at the site. At different times, Oxitec moved mosquito traps from one location to another and changed the size of the release site. It is unstandable then that a succession of peer reviewers have rejected its results.

To achieve the claimed effect, Oxitec had to significantly increase the number of adult GM mosquitoes it released each week and focus on a 500m by 200m area where it added GM pupae at locations spaced 70 to 90m apart. The release ratio of 25 GM mosquitoes to one wild one means that adult GM males are very inefficient at finding and mating with wild females. Preliminary unpublished results from Brazil are even worse: a release ratio of 54 was needed. The well-established public health approach of removing the flower pots and water containers where mosquitoes breed is likely to be more effective and has the added benefit of reducing both mosquito species that spread dengue, not just one of them.

Ethical standards in the paper are as poor as scientific ones. Oxitec failed to send the required risk assessment which meets European standards to the EU and UK authorities before exporting GM mosquito eggs to the Cayman Islands. Informed consent is not possible without a published risk assessment, which did not exist. Scientists, as well as environmental groups, have criticised the company for conducting its first experiments in a British Overseas territory which has no biosafety law, and for not meeting these legal and ethical requirements.

Oxitec’s GM mosquitoes are not “sterile”: they mate with wild mosquitoes and produce offspring which survive to the late larval or pupal stage. Some 3-4 per cent of these survive to adulthood and this can rise to 15% in the presence of the common antibiotic tetracycline: information which Oxitec tried to conceal from public scrutiny. When Oxitec was forced to release a risk assessment, following the trials, scientists from the Max Planck Institute published a critique arguing that the risk of releasing GM biting females, and the survival of GM mosquito offspring, should have been properly considered.

It is hard to justify planned commercial releases based on these results. Poorly effective approaches to reducing mosquito populations can actually increase the risk of the more severe form of dengue in dengue-endemic countries (such as Brazil), due to the loss of cross-immunity to different dengue virus serotypes. Other risks include a possible increase in the numbers of the Asian Tiger mosquito, which also transmits dengue; and increases in the number of surviving GM mosquitoes over time.

Back in 2010, Oxitec’s exaggerated claims that it had a GM solution to the dengue virus were widely reported despite no published results. A Nature News blog even stated that the company had wiped-out the disease although dengue is not endemic in the Cayman Islands and no tests have ever been conducted of the impacts on the illness. The effect of suppressing mosquito populations on the incidence of dengue is poorly understood and may be very limited. Plans to scale-up releases of GM mosquitoes in Brazil to 2.5 million a week may still go ahead regardless, following a 2007 agreement between the Brazilian and UK governments. UK Trade and Investment is targeting developing countries as potential markets to help Oxitec commercialise its patents, and helping Brazil to secure venture capital investment. Experiments are also planned in Florida and Panama.

Oxitec’s funders include the multinational pesticide and GM seed company Syngenta. Most of its management team and consultants are ex-Syngenta staff. Promotion of GM mosquitoes as a way to tackle a tropical disease is part of a PR strategy intended to pave the way to a new global business selling GM agricultural pests. GM olive flies, tomato borers, diamond back moths (which eat cabbages and broccoli), fruit flies and pink bollworms (cotton pests) will be just the start. Other ideas for the future include GM pesticide-resistant bees.

Oxitec’s GM insects could soon end up in your food. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)’s new Guidance on risk assessments for GM animals could be adopted as early as December, opening the door for large-scale commercial releases of GM insects in the EU. Oxitec has indicated that it wishes dead and surviving GM larvae, pupae and adult insects on food crops to be treated as “technically unavoidable”: allowing them to enter the food chain without any labelling. If used commercially, many GM pests will die as larvae inside olives and tomatoes, as well as on the outside of some other crops. Ecosystem impacts are poorly understood and surviving GM pests could spread across national borders and into sensitive environments and organic crops.

Concerned individuals should - urgently - be thinking about contacting their MPs and MEPs and writing to supermarkets to ask them not to stock such products.

Cell and the cancerquences

by Sudeshna Chowdhury

A recent report published by the World Health Organization says that cell phone radiation could possibly be carcinogenic. Doctors advise people to take precautions before it is too late

It seems caution is the watchword for billions of cell phone users across the world after a report published by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), indicated that radiation from cell phones posed an increased risk for brain cancer.

The IARC, which is the World Health Organization's (WHO) cancer research agency, has classified 'radiofrequency electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B), based on an increased risk for glioma, a malignant type of brain cancer, associated with wireless phone use'.

While many cell phone users are concerned, others are least bothered with the study findings. Many, though, have already pressed the panic button and are consciously cutting down on their talk time. For example, Rahul Jain, stock investor from Malad (W), after reading the latest report by WHO, has decided to use his mobile only when it is important.

"The nature of my job is such that I have to constantly be on the phone. But mobile-related health hazards are always on my mind.

At the same time, there is no direct correlation between cell phone usage and cancer, so many of us do not take these warnings seriously. Once concrete evidence comes up, I believe, we will be further limit mobile usage and take necessary precautions."

A lot of people believe that cell phones have now become an integral part of their life and it is next to impossible to do without them. "We're youngsters and how could we possibly live without mobiles?" asked Devyani Sabnal (20), student of SIES college, Sion.

Referring to WHO's report, Sabnal said, "Every problem has a solution. If researchers are saying that cell phone usage can be carcinogenic, then there is a need to find a solution too but abandoning cell phones or limiting its usage is not the answer."

Arjun Pathwar (19), student of Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS) at Vile Parle too echoes a similar sentiment. "I am not bothered at all with this study. My friends too are aware of the study but we just don't care.

Mobiles are one of the most effective forms of communication and if it is established that usage of cell phones can cause cancer, then we shall see what to do later. We can't be bothered now," elaborated Pathwar.

But doctors believe that, not paying heed to these warnings might prove dangerous for people in the long run. Hence it's better to be safe than sorry. "By the time the results come out, which can clearly indicate that cell phones can have serious health hazards, many might have already lost their life.

In fact we see a lot of kids who come to us to seek treatment for brain tumour, etcetera, and we prescribe minimum usage of cell phones for such patients," said Dr Arvind Kulkarni, Director, Radiation and Oncology, Lady Ratan Tata Medical Centre, Cooperage.

Dr Ashok Waghmare, a neuro physician recollects a case where one of his patients complained of severe headache and dizziness. "I suggested a few painkillers but he got no relief. After inquiring about his lifestyle, I got to know that he was a medical representative and had to use the phone constantly. So I suggested that he put the phone on loudspeaker while talking.

Within a week he was cured," said Waghmare. When asked why cell phones could be dangerous for the brain, Waghmare points out that, "The brain has electromagnetic transmitters and it attracts such radiation. Hence brain function can be impaired."

Waghmare further adds that using loudspeakers dissipates radiation from the phone to the surroundings and, "there is no direct connection with your ear. As a result, the radiation does not affect your brain too much. However, the best option is using landline phones." Longer the distance, lesser the effects of radiation, say doctors.

Most people in the age group of 25-40 have problems related to excess cell phone usage, says Waghmare. Doctors are concerned with cell phone usage among kids too.

In fact, many parents are equally concerned with the revelations of the WHO study. To prevent her son from using the cell phone, Mansiha Shroff makes her son, Manan (15), go through newspaper articles, which highlight risks related to excess cell phone usage. Said Shroff, "He is old enough to read such articles and understand the health hazards posed by radiation from cell phones. Also, he has a prepaid card, which limits his usage beyond a point."

Shroff says that her five-year-old daughter, Riddhima too wants a mobile phone, "but we explain to her in simple terms that the mobile is bad for her health." From safety issues to lack of sleep to other health issues, cell phones can affect kids in a lot of ways. "Cell phones do concern parents.

Some believe that it can impair their child's hearing ability. Others express concern that too much usage of mobiles can lead to anxiety, irritation and lack of sleep," said Arundhati Chauhan, President, Parent Teacher Association (PTA) United Forum.

Children and teenagers should be discouraged from using cell phones as, "Children and teenagers are more sensitive to genetic mutations than grown ups. Also, do not keep phones close to your head while sleeping. Switch the phone off at night," said Kulkarni.

Dr Anusheel Munshi

Nearly 5 billion people worldwide have mobile phones. In India itself, nearly 800 million people use cell phones. The WHO had set up an expert panel to evaluate the effect of cell phones on the human body.

On May 31, 2011 the expert panel said that cell phones might possibly cause side effects. In finding cell phones to be "possibly carcinogenic," the IARC panel stated that heavy cell phone use might or might not cause a specific form of brain cancer called glioma.

The finding means that research is urgently needed to find out whether cell phones actually cause cancer. It is to be noted that the present panel report does not report any new finding of a study.

Rather it is the expert opinion of eminent leaders in scientific thought, based on the current literature. As of date, no study has categorically implicated cell phones as a causal factor for brain tumour, although there have been suggestions to that effect.

Lifetime exposure to the magnetic fields created by the phones is rapidly increasing. Cell phones are held tightly against the head. Also, children are at particular risk, not only because their skulls are thinner but also because their lifetime exposure to cell phones is likely will be greater than the exposure of current adults.

The effects of cell phones take long to manifest. In some cases this duration may be 10 years or more. Finally, cell phone technology is rapidly advancing and it is claimed that the electromagnetic exposure is progressively less with newer phones.

Electromagnetic radiation is governed by an interesting law known as the inverse square law. What this essentially means is that if we increase distance from the source by a factor of 2, the exposure gets reduced by 1/4th.

It is for this reason, that distance from the device is a critical saving factor from side effects of the cell phone, if indeed they are proven to have such effects. Till we get further evidence on the issue, it may be appropriate to observe the following precautions.

Cell phones may be used whenever they are really needed. For most routine work and casual talks, use the regular landline connection. Discourage children from excessive use of cell phones.  Whenever possible, use a wired ear piece connected to the cell phone. Avoid cell phone use when the signal is weak. Consider alternating between left and right ear while talking on cell phone. Use texting (SMS) instead of calling if possible.

Better safe than sorry
Dr Arvind Kulkarni

Radiation from mobile phones and other electronic devices such as microwave ovens, has been a concern for the medical community for many years.

The atmosphere is full of invisible electromagnetic emitted from radio, television, computer, etcetera. These electronic gadgets have become an integral part of our life and we cannot really do without them. But people can exert caution as far as their usage is concerned.

Although medical journals have often published reports, which state that a, "definite link between these radiation and cancer has not been proven yet," I believe that, there is no point in waiting for such results to emerge.

One must realise that a tumour doesn't develop instantly; it takes many years to develop. The writer is the Director, Radiation Oncology Department at the Lady Ratan Tata Medical Centre, Cooperage, Colaba, Mumbai

Men risk wrecking their fertility if they don't curb their cell phone use. Researchers have found that cell phone use may also lead to low sperm quality and a decrease in fertility.

"Our findings were a little bit puzzling," said Rany Shamloul, postdoctoral fellow in pharmacology and toxicology at the Queen's University, Canada, who led the study. "We were expecting to find different results, but the results we did find suggest that there could be some intriguing mechanisms at work," said Shamloul.

The team discovered that men using cell phones reported higher levels of circulating testosterone but they also had lower levels of luteinizing hormone (LH), an important reproductive hormone that is secreted by the pituitary gland in the brain.

Researchers hypothesize that electromagnetic waves (EMW) emitted by mobiles may have a dual action on male hormone levels and fertility.

EMW may increase the number of cells in the testes ; but by lowering the levels of LH, EMW may block the conversion of basic circulating type of testosterone to the more active form of testosterone associated with sperm production and fertility.

The government assured that India would adhere to best global and scientific benchmarks while drafting the final guidelines in the telecom sector. The government's reaction comes in the backdrop of a latest WHO report which says cellphone use can possibly cause brain cancer.

"While telecom is a huge success story in India, we have to ensure that any possible health related effects of radiation emitted by mobile phones and towers are reflected in the guidelines.

The final guidelines would take into account the best global benchmarks and scientific evidence on the subject," said Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology Sachin Pilot.

The government in August last year, had set up an inter- ministerial group to evaluate the evidence, re-visit radiation guidelines for mobile towers and adopt guidelines for radiation emission by cell phones.

The group had made it mandatory for cellphone manufacturers to declare the radiation level of each mobile handset on the packet itself.

Commonly prescribed interferon beta does not delay multiple sclerosis progression in study

CBS News

Interferon beta, the most widely prescribed medication used to treat multiple sclerosis (MS), has not shown any effect in delaying the disease's progression, according to a new study.

"Treatment with beta interferon was not associated with a delay in progression to disability," senior researcher Dr. Helen Tremlett, an associate professor at the University of British Columbia, told WebMD. "It may be that in subgroups of patients these drugs do slow disease progression, but we were not able to show this."

Researchers at the University of British Columbia collected information on 868 multiple sclerosis patients who had taken interferon beta and 1,788 patents who had not, from 1985 to 2008. Out of the group of patients who were not medicated with interferon beta, they were split into people who were able eligible for the drug but did not receive it (untreated) and people who fit the criteria for the drug, but it was not yet available when they needed it (historically untreated).

Researchers discovered that those who took the drug were no less likely to have long-term disability than those who didn't take the drug, when looking at a standard test to measure disability progression in MS.

"It dampens somewhat the enthusiasm for so-called first-line therapies," Ludwig Kappos of University Hospital in Basel, Switzerland and author of an editorial that accompanied the study, said to Businessweek.

The study was published on July 18 in The Journal of the American Medical Association.

Researchers used a metric known as a Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) to judge how far the disease had progressed in their participants. Those who scored a 6 - meaning they needed a cane to walk 330 feet or 100 meters - were considered to have a disease that progressed. Out of the subjects who took interferon beta, 10.8 percent scored a 6. Out of the subjects who were untreated, only 5.3 percent and 23.1 percent of the historically untreated group reached that same score.

Previous studies have reportedly shown that interferon beta does help stall disease progression, but researchers said that the methodology was flawed through small sample sizes, poor follow-up or included patients who were too ill to start taking medication in the control group, according to TIME.

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic autoimmune disease that attacks the central nervous system often leading to disability, according to the National MS Society. It uses the body's own defense system to attack myelin, the fatty substance that protects the nerve fibers in the central nervous system. This causes the fibers to form scar tissue - known as sclerosis - disrupting the messages traveling from the brain and spinal chord to other parts of the body.

The National MS Society adds that most people are diagnosed between 20 and 50, and while it is not considered a fatal disease, it can present many difficulties in the lives of those diagnosed. About 400,000 Americans have MS, and about 2.1 million people worldwide are affected. A person is diagnosed every hour.

There are four types of MS. Interferon beta drugs are used to treat the relapsing-remitting form of the disease, which is the initial diagnosis for 85 percent of MS patients, the National MS Society reports. People with relapsing-remitting MS often have attacks - called relapses, flare-ups or exacerbations - that show worsening neurological function.

This doesn't mean that MS patients should stop taking interferon beta. It has been shown to benefit MS patients in other ways, senior author Helen Tremlett told the New York Times.

"These drugs were licensed because they reduce relapse and have a better outcome with lesions," she said. "That has not changed."

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Nearly all conventional food crops grown with fluoride-laced water, then sprayed with more fluoride

Natural News

The average American today is exposed to a whole lot more fluoride than he or she is probably aware. Conventional produce, it turns out, is one of the most prevalent sources of fluoride exposure besides fluoridated water, as conventional crops are not only irrigated with fluoride-laced water in many cases, but also sprayed with pesticide and herbicide chemicals that have been blended with fluoride, and later processed once again with fluoridated water.

This fact may come as a surprise to many who have bought into the idea that eating more fresh produce is automatically beneficial for health, regardless of how that produce was grown. Thinking that they are doing their bodies a favor, millions of Americans have incorporated conventional fruits and vegetables into their everyday diets, not realizing that the resulting cumulative effect of fluoride exposure from these foods could be harming their health.

Many food crops uptake fluoride chemicals from water, soil

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly 75 percent of the U.S. population is being forcibly medicated with fluoride chemicals via their water supplies. This means that a significant percentage of U.S. crops are also irrigated using this same fluoridated water, particularly in the "Bread Belt" states, many of which are almost entirely fluoridated.

While not all crops uptake fluoride from water in the same amounts, many absorb significant amounts of fluoride through their root systems every time they are watered. Tea plants, for instance, are among the worst when it comes to absorbing fluoride from soil and water, and storing it in their leaves. Grapes are another crop that tends to accumulate fluoride in high levels as well.

According to data collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for its National Fluoride Database of Selected Beverages and Foods, fresh fruits and vegetables have relatively low levels of fluoride compared to what is found in fluoridated water, reconstituted juices, dried fruit, and other sources. But levels can vary, and particularly in the case of conventional produce, fluoridated pesticides and herbicides can add to overall fluoride exposure and intake levels.

Fluoridated pesticide, herbicide residues often lurk on conventional food

Because of its extreme toxicity, fluoride is often added to pesticides and herbicides in order to protect conventional crops from insect damage and disease. But just like with fluoridated irrigation water, fluoridated crop chemicals often absorb directly into plants, or at the very least, linger on the skins of the fruits and vegetables they produce, which adds to their fluoride toxicity.

Sulfuryl fluoride is one such pesticide that is commonly used to treat conventional cereal grains, dried fruit, tree nuts, cocoa beans, coffee beans, and other foods. Though the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is said to currently be in the process of phasing out the use of sulfuryl fluoride, the chemical is still being used on a wide variety of conventional food crops, unbeknownst to consumers.

There are, in fact, more than 150 different fluoridated pesticides currently approved for use on conventional crops, none of which are typically indicated on produce labels. Chances are that if you eat conventional fruit, vegetables, or nuts, you are more than likely eating varieties that have been sprayed or fumigated with fluoride chemicals, which are prohibited from use on organic crops.

As we reported on recently, conventional grapes are often sprayed with the fluoride-based chemical pesticide cryolite, which is often sold under the trade name Kryocide. This particular pesticide actually contains substances that facilitate the passing of fluoride across the blood-brain barrier and directly into brain tissue, which makes it exceptionally toxic.

This compounded exposure to fluoride from fluoridated irrigation water, fluoridated pesticides and herbicides, airborne fluoride chemicals, and fluoridated water used during processing or reconstitution after harvest renders many conventional fruits and vegetables fluoride saturated.

Admittedly, many organic crops are also exposed to fluoride via irrigated water just like conventional crops are. But at least organic crops are not sprayed with fluoridated pesticides after harvest, and many organic foods are processed after harvest using purified water, as indicated on their ingredient labels, which means they contain less overall fluoride than their conventional counterparts.

The Fluoride Action Network (FAN) has also created a helpful guide entitled 7 Ways to Avoid Fluoride in Beverages and Food that will help you discern how best to avoid fluoride when shopping for other types of food: