Pulse Beat
Medical developments from around the world
Cancerous Confusion
Asenior cancer biologist seems to be in a dilemma. “Half a million U.S. women were diagnosed with non-invasive DCIS by January 2005 and the number continues to climb, propelling people to accept medical intervention even when none is needed.” Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), according to majority of cancer biologists, is not a cancer and should, thus, be removed from the carcinoma tab! But who bothers, as long as it is one of the leading causes for breast removal and other therapies!
All cancers need not be fatal without treatment; “However, cancers are heterogeneous and can follow multiple paths, not all of which progress to metastases and death, and include indolent disease that causes no harm during the patient’s lifetime,” according to the abstract of a study titled “Overdiagnosis and Overtreatment in Cancer: An Opportunity for Improvement”, published in Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
What If Medicine Disappeared?
This is the title of an interesting book written by Frances B McCrea and Gerald E Markle. I feel every lay reader of this book would benefit because the main reason why patients get caught in this ‘health scare’ system is fear of disability and death. Although many of my writings, books and speeches have been saying this, coming from the West, this book would give our Indian readers a fresh point of view as opposed to the biased Western mind-set. I wish to stress that the authors show how almost half of the cancer diagnosis was only a scare in the first place. But the gravity of the situation is not assessed by these numbers. Cancer scare kills as effectively as the most invasive cancer. Enjoy reading the book folks! 
Genome Mystery
Most of us think that our genome is one single large entity. Dr Christopher Walsh, from the Boston Children’s Hospital, thinks otherwise. He has now shown that most of the cells from the pre-frontal cortex have their neighbours having the genealogy of a heart cell or liver cell, rather than another neuron! This is not surprising, if we understand that we are born as a single nucleated cell (the zygote) which divides and divides to make us what we are today: 100 trillion-odd cells. This cell division, on the way, must have collected enough and more bits and pieces from its environment thus giving this genomic mosaic.
Genetic basis of diseases and predicting genetic predilection for hapless patients is so inadequate today that, for example, many neurological disorders like schizophrenia run strongly in families; but large studies have identified genes that explain just a small fraction of this heritability. Maybe that’s because “we’ve been looking at blood genomes to understand brain genomes,” says McConnell. By analysing DNA taken from blood samples, we’re missing a lot of the important mutations that are hidden in neurons themselves—or in specific pockets of neurons. “Maybe the missing heritability lies in these brain genomes.”
Shocking Revelations
The journal, Atherosclerosis, published these findings in its June 2015 issue: Men who had measles and mumps as children suffered 29% less heart attacks and 17% less strokes! Women with a history of both infections had a 17% lower risk of cardiovascular disease and 21% lower risk of stroke. This could mean that natural infection with measles and mumps prevents millions of heart attacks and strokes. Why is this information not all over TV and the Internet? What is the mainstream media hiding? 
In countries which use BCG vaccinations against tuberculosis, the incidence of type-I diabetes in children under 14 is nearly double, writes Mike Adams, the editor-in-chief of Natural News (USA). I think we must ponder over this, if we are interested in our future generations.
To me, somehow, the very foundation of vaccination looks like pseudoscience. But, since I am not a vaccine scientist, I cannot refute their claims adequately. 
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