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Drug review

Peter Sandner, Peter Berger, Christoph Zenzmaier
Fibrotic diseases cause high rates of morbidity and mortality, and their incidence increases with age. Despite intense research and development efforts, effective and well-tolerated antifibrotic treatments are scarce. Transforming growth factor-β signaling, which is widely considered the most important profibrotic factor, causes a pro-oxidant shift in redox homeostasis and a concomitant decrease in nitric oxide (NO) signaling. The NO/cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) signaling cascade plays a pivotal role in the regulation of cell and organ function in whole-body hemostasis...
October 27, 2016: Gerontology
Amy E B Packard, Ann E Egan, Yvonne M Ulrich-Lai
Perhaps the most salient behaviors that individuals engage in involve the avoidance of aversive experiences and the pursuit of pleasurable experiences. Engagement in these behaviors is regulated to a significant extent by an individual's hormonal milieu. For example, glucocorticoid hormones are produced by the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA) axis, and influence most aspects of behavior. In turn, many behaviors can influence HPA axis activity. These bidirectional interactions not only coordinate an individual's physiological and behavioral states to each other, but can also tune them to environmental conditions thereby optimizing survival...
September 15, 2016: Comprehensive Physiology
Nilesh Chande, Cassandra M Townsend, Claire E Parker, John K MacDonald
BACKGROUND: The results from controlled clinical trials investigating the efficacy of azathioprine and 6-mercaptopurine for the treatment of active Crohn's disease have been conflicting and controversial. An updated meta-analysis was performed to assess the effectiveness of these drugs for the induction of remission in active Crohn's disease. OBJECTIVES: The primary objective was to determine the efficacy and safety of azathioprine and 6-mercaptopurine for induction of remission in active Crohn's disease...
October 26, 2016: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews
E L Andrade, A F Bento, J Cavalli, S K Oliveira, C S Freitas, R Marcon, R C Schwanke, J M Siqueira, J B Calixto
This review presents a historical overview of drug discovery and the non-clinical stages of the drug development process, from initial target identification and validation, through in silico assays and high throughput screening (HTS), identification of leader molecules and their optimization, the selection of a candidate substance for clinical development, and the use of animal models during the early studies of proof-of-concept (or principle). This report also discusses the relevance of validated and predictive animal models selection, as well as the correct use of animal tests concerning the experimental design, execution and interpretation, which affect the reproducibility, quality and reliability of non-clinical studies necessary to translate to and support clinical studies...
October 24, 2016: Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research, Revista Brasileira de Pesquisas Médicas e Biológicas
Athumani M Ramadhani, Tamsyn Derrick, David Macleod, Martin J Holland, Matthew J Burton
BACKGROUND: Trachoma is a blinding disease, initiated in early childhood by repeated conjunctival infection with the obligate intracellular bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis. The population prevalence of the clinical signs of active trachoma; ''follicular conjunctivitis" (TF) and/or ''intense papillary inflammation" (TI), guide programmatic decisions regarding the initiation and cessation of mass drug administration (MDA). However, the persistence of TF following resolution of infection at both the individual and population level raises concerns over the suitability of this clinical sign as a marker for C...
October 2016: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Jason Shafrin, Taylor T Schwartz, Darius N Lakdawalla, Felicia M Forma
BACKGROUND: Nonadherence to antipsychotic medication among patients with schizophrenia results in poor symptom management and increased health care and other costs. Despite its health impact, medication adherence remains difficult to accurately assess. New technologies offer the possibility of real-time patient monitoring data on adherence, which may in turn improve clinical decision making. However, the economic benefit of accurate patient drug adherence information (PDAI) has yet to be evaluated...
November 2016: Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy
Claudiu T Supuran
The enzyme carbonic anhydrase (CA, EC is found in numerous organisms across the tree of life, with seven distinct classes known to date. CA inhibition can be exploited for the treatment of edema, glaucoma, seizures, obesity, cancer and infectious diseases. A myriad of CA inhibitor (CAI) classes and inhibition mechanisms have been identified over the past decade, mainly through structure-based drug design approaches. Five different CA inhibition mechanisms are presently known. Areas covered: Recent advances in structure-based CAI design are reviewed, with periodic table-based organization of inhibitor classes...
October 26, 2016: Expert Opinion on Drug Discovery
Claudia Greißing, Katharina Kössler, Johanna Freyer, Lucie Hüter, Peter Buchal, Susanne Schiek, Thilo Bertsche
Background Pharmacist-led medication reviews have shown to prevent drug-related problems (DRPs). So far, data is rare about the implementation in routine care, the conditions for intensifying this service and the practical skills of community pharmacists to perform medication reviews. Objective To assess the current status of medication review implementation in German community pharmacies and the performance of identifying DRPs in a ficticious patient example. Setting German community pharmacies. Method An online survey was conducted from July to September 2015 including questions about medication reviews currently performed in routine care of community pharmacies and hidden DRPs in a ficticious patient example...
October 25, 2016: International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy
Rama I Mahran, Magda M Hagras, Duxin Sun, Dean E Brenner
Cancer is still a major cause of death all over the world. Its incidence and prevalence are increasing drastically. Cancer treatment imposes high socioeconomic burden with little impact especially on aggressive types of cancer. Reversing or delaying carcinogenesis "cancer chemoprevention" by purified or extracted natural products is a cost-effective alternative. Curcumin is widely available, inexpensive spice that has been used in ancient folk medicine for millennia, especially in India. Curcumin has the pharmacological properties that slow or reverse cellular proliferation and enhance apoptosis and differentiation associated with a diverse array of molecular effects...
October 25, 2016: AAPS Journal
Feng Q He, Markus Ollert
Identification of key genes for a given physiological or pathological process is an essential but still very challenging task for the entire biomedical research community. Statistics-based approaches, such as genome-wide association study (GWAS)- or quantitative trait locus (QTL)-related analysis have already made enormous contributions to identifying key genes associated with a given disease or phenotype, the success of which is however very much dependent on a huge number of samples. Recent advances in network biology, especially network inference directly from genome-scale data and the following-up network analysis, opens up new avenues to predict key genes driving a given biological process or cellular function...
October 26, 2016: Advances in Biochemical Engineering/biotechnology
Michela Bulfoni, Matteo Turetta, Fabio Del Ben, Carla Di Loreto, Antonio Paolo Beltrami, Daniela Cesselli
Although the enumeration of circulating tumor cells (CTC) defined as expressing both epithelial cell adhesion molecule and cytokeratins (EpCAM⁺/CK⁺) can predict prognosis and response to therapy in metastatic breast, colon and prostate cancer, its clinical utility (i.e., the ability to improve patient outcome by guiding therapy) has not yet been proven in clinical trials. Therefore, scientists are now focusing on the molecular characterization of CTC as a way to explore its possible use as a "surrogate" of tumor tissues to non-invasively assess the genomic landscape of the cancer and its evolution during treatment...
October 24, 2016: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Fernando Pastor
The renaissance of cancer immunotherapy is, nowadays, a reality. In the near future, it will be very likely among the first-line treatments for cancer patients. There are several different approaches to modulate the immune system to fight against tumor maladies but, so far, monoclonal antibodies may currently be the most successful immuno-tools used to that end. The number of ongoing clinical trials with monoclonal antibodies has been increasing exponentially over the last few years upon the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of the first immune-checkpoint blockade antibodies...
October 24, 2016: Pharmaceuticals
Jiaqian Pan, Shuangmei Tong, Lei Kang, Jing Tang
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Although available therapies can effectively inhibit hepatitis B virus (HBV) replication in patients with active chronic hepatitis B (CHB) infection, therapeutic efficacy is limited because of potential drug resistance, and an inability to mediate viral clearance and to rectify immune impairment in CHB patients. This review will summarize the state-of-the-art for anti-HBV drugs and focus on potential drugs and targets under development and evaluation. RECENT FINDINGS: New developing drugs are evaluated for their antiviral effects in the areas of interference with the viral replication cycle, elimination of covalently closed circular DNA, modulation of host immunity and identification of the La protein and its regulator casein kinase as possible targets for the development of anti-HBV therapies...
December 2016: Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases
Mohammad A Kaisar, Ravi K Sajja, Shikha Prasad, Vinay V Abhyankar, Taylor Liles, Luca Cucullo
The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a dynamic biological interface which actively controls the passage of substances between the blood and the central nervous system (CNS). From a biological and functional standpoint, the BBB plays a crucial role in maintaining brain homeostasis inasmuch that deterioration of BBB functions are prodromal to many CNS disorders. Conversely, the BBB hinders the delivery of drugs targeting the brain to treat a variety of neurological diseases. Area covered: This article reviews recent technological improvements and innovation in the field of BBB modeling including static and dynamic cell-based platforms, microfluidic systems and the use of stem cells and 3D printing technologies...
October 26, 2016: Expert Opinion on Drug Discovery
Milena Masullo, Cosimo Pizza, Sonia Piacente
Oleanolic acid has been considered a good start molecule for synthetic exploitation. Thus hundreds of oleanane triterpenoids have been synthesized and patented. Also many oleanane saponins have been patented for their biological activities and possible pharmaceutical use. Areas covered: Patents reporting the biological activities of oleanane derivatives and saponins with oleanane-type aglycones were examined. Among the synthesized oleanane derivatives, the most promising seem to be 2-cyano-3,12-dioxoolean-1,9(11)-dien-28-oic acid derivatives which interfere with many pathways involved in inflammation, oxidative stress and cell proliferation...
October 26, 2016: Expert Opinion on Therapeutic Patents
Robert G Nichols, Nicole E Hume, Philip B Smith, Jeffrey M Peters, Andrew D Patterson
The drug metabolism field has long recognized the beneficial and sometimes deleterious influence of microbiota in the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of drugs. Early pioneering work with the sulfanilamide precursor prontosil pointed toward the necessity not only to better understand the metabolic capabilities of the microbiota but also, importantly, to identify the specific microbiota involved in the generation and metabolism of drugs. However, technological limitations important for cataloging the microbiota community as well as for understanding and/or predicting their metabolic capabilities hindered progress...
October 26, 2016: Chemical Research in Toxicology
Barbara Pfistermeister, Brita Sedlmayr, Andrius Patapovas, Gerald Suttner, Ozan Tektas, Aleksey Tarkhov, Johannes Kornhuber, Martin F Fromm, Thomas Bürkle, Hans-Ulrich Prokosch, Renke Maas
BACKGROUND: A well-known problem in current clinical decision support systems (CDSS) is the high number of alerts, which are often medically incorrect or irrelevant. This may lead to the so-called alert fatigue, an overriding of alerts, including those that are clinically relevant, and underuse of CDSS in general. OBJECTIVES: The aim of our study was to develop and to apply a standardized tool that allows its users to evaluate the quality of system-generated drug alerts...
October 26, 2016: Methods of Information in Medicine
Ki-Young Lee, Bong-Jin Lee
Bacterial toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems have received increasing attention for their diverse identities, structures, and functional implications in cell cycle arrest and survival against environmental stresses such as nutrient deficiency, antibiotic treatments, and immune system attacks. In this review, we describe the biological functions and the auto-regulatory mechanisms of six different types of TA systems, among which the type II TA system has been most extensively studied. The functions of type II toxins include mRNA/tRNA cleavage, gyrase/ribosome poison, and protein phosphorylation, which can be neutralized by their cognate antitoxins...
October 22, 2016: Toxins
Bharat Bhusan Subudhi, Pratap Kumar Sahu
Oxidative stress in brain underlies the major neurological disorders including Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). Peripherally, Angiotensin-II is a major effector of inflammation. Identification of its capacity to access brain during hypertension, as well as location of central rennin angiotensin system have led to its recognition as the major effector of oxidative stress in brain. Clinical uses of antioxidants to antagonize this oxidative stress have mostly failed. In this scenario, AT1 blockers have been investigated to prevent neurodegeneration...
October 24, 2016: Mini Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry
Liliana Lalaleo, Abbas Khojasteh, Mohammad Fattahi, Mercedes Bonfill, Rosa M Cusido, Javier Palazon
BACKGROUND: Bioactive plant secondary metabolites have complex chemical structures, which are specific to each plant species/family, and accumulate in tiny amounts. The growing market demand for many phytochemicals can lead to the over-harvesting of medicinal plants in their natural habitat, endangering species in the process. OBJECTIVE: An ongoing challenge for our society is therefore to develop a bio-sustainable production of phytochemicals, among other natural resources...
October 24, 2016: Current Medicinal Chemistry
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