Australia leads the world in treatment for Hepatitis C, yet Aboriginal people are more prone to infection
More and more people are successfully being treated for Hepatitis C infection (HCI) in Australia. Studies have shown the number of patients who have been cured of HCI this year is more than all the patients cured in the last two decades.
Hepatitis C is transferred during blood-to-blood contact. It is often spread through the use of infected medical equipment. Australia listed an oral antiviral treatment under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) in March 2016. This drug has a cure rate of over 90% and has helped 26,000 people get rid of the Hep C infection.
More than 10% of the Australian population living with chronic hepatitis C infection have availed this therapy. Thus, bringing Australia to the forefront in the treatment of Hepatitis C around the world.
However, on a worrisome note, it has been found the virus is more prevalent in the Aboriginal communities. The diagnoses for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders has increased by 40% in just the last five years.
Experts sayit is always better and cost effective to work on prevention than finding a cure. Studies have also shown the awareness and treatment level in the marginalized groups is quite low. Only about a third of 405 gay and bisexual men surveyed are aware of a cure available for Hepatitis C. Thus, bringing forth the need for solutions to bring awareness and treatment for one and all.
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British Man with HIV-AIDS Gets Completely Cured
A 44-year-old British man has been completely free from the HIV-AIDS virus using a new breakthrough treatment. This has brought fought a new hope for many as it could help get rid of the infection completely.
Scientists from five different UK universities designed a new therapy. The man in question was one of the 50 people who had volunteered for the trial of this new treatment. This new treatment has been known to help target the disease even when it is lying in its dormant state.
According to a news report, the virus was completely undetected in the man’s blood. However, they are a bit apprehensive as it may be due to the result of the regular drugs. If the dormant cells clear off from the blood, it could be called as a complete cure for HIV-AIDS.
HIV is very difficult to treat as the virus attacks the immune system. It tends to splice the DNA of T-Cells so that not only do they ignore the virus, but also turn into virus-producing factories for the infecting agent.
Most of the anti-retroviral therapies (Art) available today cannot find T-cells with the dormant virus. Thus, making it difficult to get rid of the virus completely.
This new therapy tends to recognize all the HIV-infected cells and gets rid of them. The drug called Vorinostatactivates the dormant T-cells so that the drug can get rid of all the dormant viruses as well.
The unidentified patient is also very excited about the breakthrough. He is not only happy to know that there are no detectable viruses in his blood for now, but also excited that he will be a part of this massive achievement.
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A Last-Chance Drug for Lung Cancer Will Now Be Available on the NHS
A lung cancer drug that has shown ‘unprecedented’ decrease in the tumor cells will now be available on the NHS. The drug called Tagrisso (osimertinib)was given a license in February. Its manufacturer, the AstraZeneca, calls it as ‘breakthrough drug’.
Patients can now avail this drug for non-small-cell lung cancer treatment. These patients have a specific mutation called the EGFR T790M-positive. This means they show no response to treatment given. This tablet needs to be takenonce a day.
Experts say, people with this type of cancer suffer a lot of pain and has distressing symptoms. The Osimertinibdrug has short-term effectiveness and it seems to bring in a new hope for lung cancer patients.
Data from phase 2 clinical studies have shown patients who did not show any progress with previous treatment have lived for 11 months without their condition worsening further.
Around 66% patients have shown a significant reduction in their size of tumors. Around 6 of the 397 patients have shown a complete response to the drug. Thus, making Osimertinib a turning point drug for many cancer patients.
Patients in England can now have access to Osimertinib. It is rumored to cost £ 4,722.30 per pack of 30 tablets of 80mg strength. This will be the cost of the drug without a drug agreement with AstraZeneca.
The news of Osimertinib is being hailed with joy as it will prove to be a positive decision for many lung cancer patients in the UK.
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