Health News Roundup: FDA approves Eli Lilly's drug for rare blood cancer; Dozens of Yanomami children hospitalized in northern Brazil amid health crisis and more
The company is testing Carvykti in multiple myeloma patients, with a history of relapse, who have stopped responding to existing treatment and have received one to three prior therapies. U.S. CDC still looking at potential stroke risk from Pfizer bivalent COVID shot New data from one U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) database shows a possible stroke risk link for older adults who received an updated Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 booster shot, but the signal is weaker than what the agency had flagged earlier in January, health officials said on Thursday.
Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
FDA approves Eli Lilly's drug for rare blood cancer
Eli Lilly and Co said on Friday the U.S. health regulator approved its drug for the treatment of a rare form of blood cancer. The wholesale cost of the treatment, Jaypirca, will be $21,000 per 30 days for the 200 mg dose, the U.S. drugmaker told Reuters.
Dozens of Yanomami children hospitalized in northern Brazil amid health crisis
Dozens of indigenous children suffering from malnutrition and acute diseases have been hospitalized in northern Brazil, with relatives in hammocks holding their emaciated frames in scenes that underscore the gravity of a public health crisis. The health secretary of Boa Vista, the capital of Roraima state, said on Friday that 59 indigenous children were currently at the only pediatric hospital in the state, 45 of them from the Yanomami people. Eight were under intensive care.
FDA classifies recall of LivaNova's blood-pumping system controller as most serious
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday classified the recall of LivaNova's device that controls a blood-pumping system at its most serious type, citing that their use could cause serious injuries or death. The medical device company recalled 589 units of the LifeSPARC system's controller, through the period of Dec. 19, 2019 to Nov. 17, 2022, for a software update to address a previously known malfunction.
J&J says blood cancer drug improves progression-free survival in patients
Johnson & Johnson said on Friday an interim analysis showed its drug Carvykti met the main goal of improving progression-free survival in patients with a type of blood cancer in a late-stage study. The company is testing Carvykti in multiple myeloma patients, with a history of relapse, who have stopped responding to existing treatment and have received one to three prior therapies.
U.S. CDC still looking at potential stroke risk from Pfizer bivalent COVID shot
New data from one U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) database shows a possible stroke risk link for older adults who received an updated Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 booster shot, but the signal is weaker than what the agency had flagged earlier in January, health officials said on Thursday. U.S. Food and Drug Administration officials said they had not detected a link between the shots and strokes in two other safety monitoring databases.
Sanofi's and Regeneron's Dupixent wins new stage of EU regulatory approval
Healthcare companies Sanofi and Regeneron said on Friday the European Union's medicines regulator had given a new stage of approval for their Dupixent product to treat children as young as 6 months old with severe atopic dermatitis. The European Commission is expected to announce a final decision on the Dupixent application in coming months. Dupixent was approved in June 2022 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulator for children in this age group.
U.S. FDA proposes to ease sexual abstinence rule for blood donors
The U.S. health regulator on Friday proposed new blood donation guidelines for men who have sex with men that are based on individual risk rather than across-the-board requirements, a move it said is in line with other countries and will help ensure the U.S. blood supply. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said the rules aim to reduce the risk of transfusion-transmitted HIV and are similar to those in the UK and Canada.
HCA Healthcare sees elective procedures rebound as staffing woes ease
HCA Healthcare Inc's management on Friday forecast lower labor costs and a recovery in non-urgent procedures for 2023 as staffing trends improved following an exodus of nurses during the pandemic. The commentary helped shares of the largest U.S. for-profit hospital operator reverse course to climb as much as 2%. Rivals Tenet Healthcare and Universal Health Services also rose 2% and 1%.
Exclusive-EU may pay more for Pfizer COVID shots in return for lower volume
Brussels is discussing with Pfizer and BioNTech the possibility of reducing the up to 500 million COVID-19 vaccine doses the EU has committed to buy this year in return for a higher price, a source with knowledge of the talks said. Also on the table is an extension of the deadline for delivery, possibly to the second half of 2024, the source said. They declined to be identified because the talks are confidential.
Omicron sub-variant XBB.1.5 accounts for 61.3% of U.S. COVID cases - CDC
The Omicron subvariant XBB.1.5 has likely become the dominant variant in the United States, accounting for 61.3% of COVID cases in the week ended Jan. 28, data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed on Friday. The subvariant accounted for 49.5% of cases in the week ended Jan. 21, estimates from CDC showed.
(With inputs from agencies.)
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