Top court rules against German certifier in French breast implant case
France's highest court threw out on Wednesday a 2015 ruling that cleared a German certifier of negligence after it approved faulty breast implants produced with counterfeit silicone. The Court of Cassation rejected the ruling by a lower appeals court that had overturned a negligence conviction against TUV Rheinland for its role in approving the implants made by Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP) until the French firm shut in 2010.
AcelRx shares surge after FDA staff says opioid safe
AcelRx Pharmaceuticals Inc's shares surged 30 per cent on Wednesday after U.S. Food and Administration staff said the company's opioid treatment was safe and effective, bringing it one step closer to a marketing approval. The FDA declined to approve the drug - Dsuvia - last October, seeking additional safety data and asking for certain changes in directions of use to ensure that the drug is administered properly.
Ebola response tightens in eastern Congo as seven new cases confirmed: health ministry
Congolese authorities announced a ban on Wednesday on harbouring suspected Ebola patients and promised police protection for health workers at burials, in a bid to fight back against local resistance to efforts to combat the disease. Residents of eastern Congo have attacked health workers and refused to cooperate with government efforts to combat Ebola there, the country's second major outbreak of the disease this year, which is believed to have killed 118 people since July.
Better insurance coverage of non-drug therapies might help ease the opioid crisis
When it comes to non-drug therapies for back pain, U.S. insurance plans vary widely in what they will cover, a new study finds. Private and public insurers are missing important opportunities to promote alternatives to opioids, the investigators write in JAMA Network Open.
U.S. FDA panel backs Celltrion copycat of Roche blood cancer drug
Celltrion Pharm Inc's biosimilar of Roche Holding AG's blockbuster cancer drug, Rituxan, on Wednesday, won unanimous backing from an advisory panel to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The tussles in the biosimilars market are a growing focus for investors, with soaring valuations for some pioneers in the field, including Celltrion, and worries about the long-term sales threat to makers of the original drugs such as Roche and AbbVie.
China lifts restrictions on area hit by African swine fever outbreak
China has lifted the restrictions on an area in Yueqing city in eastern Zhejiang province where the African swine fever outbreak was found in August, the agriculture ministry said on Wednesday. Local authorities removed the curbs on the infected area on Wednesday afternoon, but they must take proactive measures to prevent a recurrence of the highly contagious disease, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said in a statement published on its website.
Social media may reduce depression risk for older people with pain
Online socializing may weaken the tie between pain and depression for older people, a U.S. study suggests. People in chronic pain are at risk of depression to start with. When pain makes them stay home more, interacting with friends and family less, it only adds to this risk, the researchers write in the Journals of Gerontology, Series B.
Irregular heartbeat tied to increased risk for dementia
Having a type of irregular heartbeat known as atrial fibrillation (AF) may raise an individual's risk of developing dementia, but treating AF with blood thinners seems to reduce that risk, researchers say. The study team found that atrial fibrillation raises the overall risk of developing dementia by 40 per cent and the risk of vascular and mixed dementias by nearly 90 per cent. But people with AF who got anti-clotting drugs were 60 per cent less likely than those who didn't get the drugs to develop dementia, according to the report in Neurology.
J&J's Stelara succeeds in chronic bowel disease study
Johnson & Johnson said on Tuesday its blockbuster drug Stelara was found to be effective in treating a chronic bowel disease in a late-stage trial. Two doses of Stelara, already approved for psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and Crohn's disease, was tested in 961 patients with moderate-to-severe ulcerative colitis (UC) who had failed prior therapy.
U.S. immigrants pay more for health insurance than they get in benefits
The roughly 50 per cent of immigrants in the U.S. who have private health insurance coverage contribute more to the risk pool than they receive in benefits, a new study suggests. As U.S. lawmakers continue to tackle immigration reform, knowing whether immigrants burden or subsidize the nation's healthcare system could be helpful, researchers write in Health Affairs.
(With inputs from agencies.)