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ASCLS eNewsBytes
July 14, 2009
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Managing Laboratories in the Informatics Age
from Scientific Computing
Until the middle years of the last century, laboratory work was a matter of human intellect and labor. The rapid development of electronics in those middle years led to the development of instruments and techniques that expanded the scope of lab work and, with the development of automated control systems, allowed scientists and technicians to do less manual labor and spend more time thinking. The trend over the last half-century or more has been toward more sophisticated data-intensive techniques with automated systems conducting data acquisition, analysis and reporting. More    E-mail article


Beckman Coulter

Health Officials Fear H1N1 Flu Could Mutate
from Omaha World-Herald
Cases of H1N1 flu have mounted as public concern has begun to wane. Physicians and public health experts say the H1N1 flu is persistent. They have encouraged Americans to stay calm but remain on top of developments. The virus has unique characteristics, and what it does next is unpredictable. More    E-mail article
Related story: U.S. to Spend Another $1 billion on Flu Vaccine

Dr. Regina Benjamin is Surgeon General Choice
from CNN
President Obama announced his choice for surgeon general Dr. Regina Benjamin, a 52-year-old family practice doctor who has spent most of her career tending to the needs of poor patients in a Gulf Coast clinic in Alabama. "When people couldn't pay, she didn't charge them," Obama said. "When the clinic wasn't making money, she didn't take a salary for herself." He called Benjamin "a relentless promoter" of programs to fight preventable illness. More    E-mail article

Infectious Mononucleosis May Increase Risk for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in Teens
from Medscape Medical News
Infectious mononucleosis may be a risk factor for chronic fatigue syndrome in adolescents, according to the results of a prospective study reported in the recent issue of Pediatrics. "The observation that CFS may follow IM occurs particularly frequently in adolescent samples," write Ben Z. Katz, MD, from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago. "Acute, mononucleosis-like illnesses preceding chronic fatigue have been documented for approximately three fourths of adolescents with CFS, with nearly one half exhibiting active mononucleosis infection at symptom onset." More    E-mail article

Online Gene Testers Propose Their Own Regulations
from San Jose Mercury News
After gene-testing businesses were criticized by state regulators last year for marketing to California residents without a license to perform clinical laboratory tests, the industry decided it was time for new regulations which it decided to write. A bill would exempt gene-testing firms from requirements faced by other kinds of labs while adding new privacy protections for consumers. More    E-mail article

Equitech

Famotidine May Prevent Peptic Ulcers, Esophagitis in Patients Taking Low-Dose Aspirin
from Medscape Medical News
Famotidine is effective in preventing gastric and duodenal ulcers, and erosive esophagitis in patients taking low-dose aspirin for vascular protection, according to results from the phase 3 FAMOUS trial reported online in the recent issue of The Lancet. More    E-mail article

Mystery E. coli Genes Essential for Survival of Many Species
from Infection Control Today
Scientists have shown that E. coli one of the best known and extensively studied organisms in the world remains an enigma that may hold the key to human diseases, such as cancer. The team, funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and has examined the genome sequence of this workhorse of the laboratory and spotted three previously unknown genes that, it turns out, are essential for the survival of E. coli and one out of the three could also be implicated in cancer or developmental abnormalities in humans. These mystery genes are also found in numerous other creatures, suggesting a vital role for them across many species. More    E-mail article

House Approves $2.99 Billion FDA Budget
from The Wall Street Journal
The House overwhelmingly approved a $373 million budget increase for the Food and Drug Administration, the largest boost in the agency's history. The House voted 266 to 160 to give the FDA a $2.99 billion budget for fiscal year 2010. More    E-mail article

Rates of Chronic Disease Expected to Rise Sharply
from Clinical Laboratory News
A new report released by the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease, "The Impact of Chronic Disease on U.S. Health and Prosperity: A Collection of Statistics and Commentary," presents an overview of current trends in chronic disease and how it is affecting the U.S. health care system. According to the report, the rates of chronic diseases are expected to continue to rise due to several factors, including childhood obesity, poor lifestyle choice, and lack of access or emphasis on preventative care, posing significant problems for the U.S. health care system. More    E-mail article

Lower Donor Age Should Add to Blood Supplies
from the News and Sentinel
New laws that allow 16- and 17-year-olds to donate blood should add to area supplies, according to a Red Cross official. Brian Adams, blood services coordinator for Mid-Ohio Valley chapter of the American Red Cross, said new laws in West Virginia and Ohio could provide an increase in area blood donations. There are about 20 other states that allow 16- and 17-year-olds to donate blood. More    E-mail article




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