Thursday November 15, 2018

Diets Rich in Fat can increase the Risk of a Major Eye Disease, warns a Study

Bacteria in your intestines may play an important role in determining if you will develop blinding wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration

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Toronto, November 16, 2016: Diets rich in fat can bring such changes in the bacterial communities of your gut that they can eventually increase risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or aggravate the blinding disease, warns a study.

Bacteria in your intestines may play an important role in determining if you will develop blinding wet AMD – late form of the disease, said the study published in the journal EMBO Molecular Medicine.

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“Our study suggests that diets rich in fat alter the gut microbiome in a way that aggravates wet AMD, a vascular disease of the aging eye,” said lead researcher Przemyslaw (Mike) Sapieha, Professor at University of Montreal in Canada.

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“Influencing the types of microbes that reside in your gut either through diet or by other means may thus affect the chances of developing AMD and progression of this blinding disease,” Sapieha noted.

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AMD is characterised by a heightened immune response, sizeable deposits of fat debris at the back of the eye called soft drusen (early AMD), destruction of nerve cells, and growth of new diseased blood vessels (wet AMD, late form).

While only accounting for roughly 10 per cent of cases of AMD, wet AMD is the primary form leading to blindness.

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Current treatments becomes less effective with time. It is therefore important to find new ways to prevent the onset of this debilitating disease.

The researchers found that changes in the bacterial communities of your gut, such as those brought on by a diet rich in fat, can cause long-term low-grade inflammation in your whole body and eventually promote diseases such as wet AMD. (IANS)

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8,000 New Combinations Identified to Slow Down Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

The drug combinations have been tested in only a laboratory setting and are at least years away from being evaluated as possible treatments for people

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Antibiotic
Health organisations across the world are trying to reduce the use of antibiotics. Pixabay

Biologists have identified over 8,000 new combinations of antibiotics that are surprisingly more effective at killing harmful bacteria than the prevailing ones.

Scientists have traditionally believed that combining more than two drugs to fight harmful bacteria would yield diminishing returns.

The prevailing theory is that the incremental benefits of combining three or more drugs would be too small to matter, or that the interactions among the drugs would cause their benefits to cancel one another out.

However, the study discovered over 8,000 combinations of four and five existing medications that are effective, a finding that could be a major step toward protecting public health at a time when pathogens and common infections are increasingly becoming resistant to antibiotics, the researchers said.

“I was blown away by how many effective combinations there are as we increased the number of drugs,” said Van Savage, the Professor at the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA).

“People may think they know how drug combinations will interact, but they really don’t.”

For the study, reported in the journal npj Systems Biology and Applications, the team looked at eight common antibiotics and analysed how every possible four to five drug combination, including with varying dosages, worked against E-coli.

Bacteria
Bacteria, Pixabay

The combinations were effective because individual medications have different means of targeting E. coli.

“Some drugs attack the cell walls, others attack the DNA inside,” Savage said. “It’s like attacking a castle or fortress. Combining different methods of attacking may be more effective than just a single approach.”

“There is a tradition of using just one drug, maybe two,” said Pamela Yeh, Assistant Professor at the UCLA.

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“We’re offering an alternative that looks very promising. We shouldn’t limit ourselves to just single drugs or two-drug combinations in our medical toolbox.

“We expect several of these combinations, or more, will work much better than existing antibiotics,” Yeh added.

However, Yeh noted that although the results are very promising, the drug combinations have been tested in only a laboratory setting and are at least years away from being evaluated as possible treatments for people. (IANS)