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Sunday, Dec 21st

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FDA staff note deaths in Pfizer bone drug study

A higher percentage of patients treated with an experimental Pfizer Inc drug for osteoporosis died during a clinical trial compared with a placebo, U.S. drug reviewers said in an analysis released on Thursday.

The higher proportion of deaths through five years was statistically significant only for the lowest dose of the drug called Fablyn, said Food and Drug Administration reviewers. More patients given Fablyn, which was co-developed with Ligand Pharmaceuticals Inc, also developed blood clots.

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Vytorin Linked to Cancer; Prominent Medical Journal Reverses Stance

In an unprecedented change of posture, the New England Journal of Medicine has reversed itself on the issue of whether Vytorin causes cancer.

Vytorin is the controversial cholesterol lowering drug that is the center of a major advertising fraud that netted Merck and Schering-Plough over 10 billion dollars in sales in the past two years. Merck and Schering-Plough are facing congressional investigation, various state attorney general investigations, and plaintiff class action lawsuits. All the negative publicity has caused sales to fall off, yet the questionable drug is still a top seller for Merck and Schering-Plough in 2008.

Underneath the advertising fraud is a far more damaging prospect from the Big Pharma point of view, that the theory of lowering LDL cholesterol with drugs to prevent heart disease is itself a major fraud that has been perpetrated on the American public for the past decade. Indeed, while Vytorin is the most effective drug combination of all time in terms of lowering LDL, doing so does not produce cardiovascular health or reduce cardiovascular mortality.

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Study: New way to spot breast cancer shows promise

A radioactive tracer that "lights up" cancer hiding inside dense breasts showed promise in its first big test against mammograms, revealing more tumors and giving fewer false alarms, doctors reported Wednesday.

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Best-Selling Cholesterol Drugs Found Ineffective

Three million people worldwide are taking the new, heavily advertised anti-cholesterol drugs Zetia and Vytorin, despite a lack of clinical evidence that they reduce cardiovascular disease or heart attacks, or help patients live longer. Vytorin and Zetia brought in $5.2 billion last year for Merck and Schering-Plough, placing them among the best-selling drugs in the world. The Food and Drug Administration approves many drugs based on whether they perform a specific action, like lowering cholesterol, without requiring long-term trials on whether they extend life or lower disease risks. Other FDA-approved drugs have been found to be ineffective or even dangerous.

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Concerns Linger Over Safety Of Chemical Used in Baby Bottles

Government experts on Wednesday released a final report on the safety of a chemical used in plastic baby bottles, saying they have "some concern" the chemical is linked to health and developmental problems.

The chemical, bisphenol-A, or BPA, makes plastic hard and shatterproof, and is used in hundreds of consumer products from plastic baby bottles to CDs.

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Prescription Drugs More Deadly Than Cocaine, Heroin, Amphetamines

The bottom line: the rate of deaths in Florida caused by prescription drugs is over three times as high as the rate of deaths caused by all illicit drugs combined.

The study shows 2,328 Floridians died of opiate, or painkiller, overdoses while another 743 lost their lives from over-consuming benzodiazepines, which include the drugs Valium and Xanax. On the other hand, about a third less number of people, 989, died of overdoses from illegal drugs like cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine ("speed").

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Bitter Melon Nutrients Fight Type 2 Diabetes Better than Prescription Drugs

In addition to relieving the symptoms of diabetes, bitter melon is used in traditional Chinese medicine to promote digestion, brighten the eyes and cool the body.

"Not just diabetes, [but] for people keep slim, weight loss - even for ... cholesterol," said Benny Fan of the Australian Chinese Medicine Association. Fan says he has been promoting bitter melon as a natural remedy for 25 years.

TVNL Comment: And during those 25 years the American establishment media never told you about it!

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