The News Tribune Tacoma, WA
M. ALEXANDER OTTO;
April 16th, 2006

Federal health officials at a meeting Friday in Tacoma downplayed the risk bird flu poses to humans, contrasting earlier warnings from the federal government.

“There is no evidence it will be the next pandemic,” Dr. Julie Gerberding, head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, said of avian flu. There is “no evidence it is evolving in a direction that is becoming more transmissible to people.”

Gerberding spoke at the Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center at a pandemic flu conference that drew 1,200 people from across the state, mostly health department officials and others involved in emergency planning.

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Coca-Sek Call it the "Real Thing"

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By Chris Kraul, Times Staff Writer
April 12, 2006

Coca-Sek, bottled by a Colombian tribe, gets its kick from coca leaves. The not-so-soft drink has stirred debate about drugs and sovereignty.

INZA, Colombia — Call it the "Real Thing."

Indians in this remote mountain village in southern Colombia are marketing a particularly refreshing soft drink that harks back to Coca-Cola's original formula, when "coca" was in the name for a reason.

Advertising posters here describe the carbonated, citrus-flavored Coca-Sek as "more than an energizer" — a buzz that just might be provided by a key ingredient, a syrup produced by boiling coca leaves.

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The New York Times
April 12, 2006

By ALEX BERENSON

Merck's legal morass just got a whole lot stickier. A jury in Atlantic City yesterday found that Merck had misled the Food and Drug Administration about the dangers of its painkiller Vioxx and acted with wanton disregard for patients taking the drug.

By a vote of 7 to 1, the jury awarded $9 million in punitive damages to John McDarby, 77, who had a heart attack in 2004 after taking Vioxx for four years, and his wife, Irma. Last week, it gave the McDarbys $4.5 million in compensatory damages.

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ISIS
Institute of Science in Society
Press Release
April 10 2006

A monoclonal antibody drug tested in a clinical trial made all six healthy volunteers violently ill, yet transgenic crop plants with similar drugs are being tested in secret locations and the unsuspecting public are being exposed without their knowledge or consent. Prof. Joe Cummins and Dr. Mae-Wan Ho

A fully referenced version of this article is posted on ISIS members’ website. Details here

Drug trial reactions attest to the deadly nature of MAB drugs

The London drug trial that left six healthy volunteers dangerously ill has raised awkward questions on the science and ethics involved in all stages of drug research and development (“Drug trial catastrophe – collapse of science and ethics”, this series). The drug, code named TGN1412, is a genetically engineered humanized monoclonal antibody (MAB) aimed at treating leukaemia and autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. Hundreds of MAB drugs are under development, 18 of which have already been approved by the US FDA, with warnings posted on each and every one of them (“Warnings over FDA approved monoclonal antibody drugs”, this series).

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Drug firms 'inventing diseases'

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BBC News
April 11, 2006

Pharmaceutical firms are inventing diseases to sell more drugs, researchers have warned.

Disease-mongering promotes non-existent diseases and exaggerates mild problems to boost profits, the Public Library of Science Medicine reported.

Researchers at Newcastle University in Australia said firms were putting healthy people at risk by medicalising conditions such as menopause.

But the pharmaceutical industry denied it invented diseases.

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Consumeraffairs.com
Knowledge is power!
April 6, 2006

Brand name chicken products sold in American supermarkets and fast food restaurants are widely contaminated with arsenic, according to independent test results released by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy.

Brand name chicken products tested by IATP included Foster Farms, Trader Joe's, Gold'n Plump, Perdue, Smart Chicken, and Tyson Foods. Fast food chains that had chicken products tested included McDonald's, Wendy's, Arby's, Subway, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Church's and Popeyes.

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By Caroline Collard

OBREGON, Mexico - Yaqui from Sonora, Mexico, are seeing an increase in birth defects, while young people are dying from cancer after working without protective clothing with pesticides in agricultural fields near their villages.

Francisco Villegas Paredes, Yaqui from Vicam village, said doctors have confirmed that the birth defects and cancers are the result of Yaquis working in fields where these dangerous pesticides and chemicals - which have been banned in other countries - are being used by farmers who lease Yaqui lands primarily for wheat and corn crops.

Describing the deformities of a 9-year-old child who sleeps face-down because of a bone growth on his spine, Paredes said, ''It would make you so sad to see these Yaqui children.''

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Breaking News on Supplements & Nutrition - Europe
Nutra Ingredients.com europe
April 6, 2006

Increasing intake of vitamin C improves the body’s ability to oxidize fat and can reduce fatigue, said US researchers at this week’s Experimental Biology 2006 in San Francisco.

Lead researcher, Professor Carol Johnson, told NutraIngredients.com: “This is all important because about 30 per cent of Americans have poor vitamin C status as indicated by blood vitamin C concentrations.”

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Drug trial firm knew of risk

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Jo Revill, health editor
April 9, 2006
The Observer

The consent form for test that left six men critically ill listed a side effect which can seriously harm the immune system

The drugs company behind the clinical trial that left six volunteers fighting for their lives was well aware that the previously untested drug might seriously damage the immune system.

The consent form the men were asked to sign, which has been obtained by The Observer, warned that a possible effect of the drug was 'cytokine release' - a massive immune reaction to a chemical as it triggers a uncontrollable response from antibodies. Cytokine release or cytokine storm, as it is also known, can be life-threatening, although the form does not spell that out.

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By Myron Levin, Times Staff Writer
April 10, 2006

States push for bans in children's vaccines. But leading medical groups are pushing back.

As lawmakers in about 20 states press for bans on mercury in children's vaccines, they are meeting stiff resistance from influential health and medical organizations, including groups that get substantial funding from drug makers and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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