Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Bad cholesterol genes discovered

reposted from:

Bad cholesterol genes discovered
'Bad' LDL cholesterol can block blood vessels
Scientists have found novel genes linked with 'bad' cholesterol, paving the way for new therapies to treat the important heart disease risk factor.

High levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol cause harm by clogging the arteries.

Experts said the UK study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics could ultimately save many lives.

Coronary heart disease is the UK's biggest killer, behind one-in-four male and one-in-six female deaths.

This finding has the potential to lead to the development of new drugs to help lower cholesterol levels which in turn could help thousands of heart patients across the UK
Prof Jeremy Pearson,
British Heart Foundation

Cardiovascular disease kills 233,000 people a year in the UK, and an estimated 16.7 million a year world-wide.

The fatty deposits inside arteries can trigger problems by breaking off and blocking blood flow.

The Barts and The London, Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry team carried out a detailed study of the entire human DNA sequence to pinpoint which genes might be involved.

They found a new region on chromosome 1 that appeared to influence LDL cholesterol. This DNA was associated with a 6% increase in blood LDL levels.

Professor Patricia Munroe said: "Our study found new genes for serum LDL, the cholesterol which furs arteries.

"We believe our findings are of significant clinical importance as they are strongly associated with cardiovascular disease; they also represent excellent targets for new medicines."

Professor Jeremy Pearson of the British Heart Foundation said: "This finding has the potential to lead to the development of new drugs to help lower cholesterol levels which in turn could help thousands of heart patients across the UK."

Statins for all diabetics urged

reposted from:

Statins for all diabetics urged
Statin pill
Millions of statins are prescribed annually in the NHS
People with diabetes should receive cholesterol-busting drugs regardless of whether they have signs of heart disease,
UK researchers say.

Statins cut the risk of heart attack, stroke and death in diabetic people even in those with low cholesterol levels, analysis of 14 trials shows.

It means hundreds of thousands more people could benefit from treatment, the Lancet report said.

There are 2.5 million people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK.

Many more do not realise they have the condition and statins are "underused" in people with diabetes the researchers said.

Guidance from the National Institute of Clinical and Health Excellence (NICE) in England and Wales issued in 2006 estimated around 3.3 million people are eligible for treatment with statins.

This includes people with diabetes who have a 20% risk of developing cardiovascular disease in the next 10 years.


A team of researchers at Oxford University reviewed studies of more than 90,000 people - 19,000 with diabetes - and found that many more would benefit from statins than previously realised.

They found that standard daily treatment with statins would prevent about one third of heart attacks and strokes in people with diabetes.

The benefits were seen regardless of age, sex and whether patients were already showing signs of cardiovascular disease.

What we're saying is statins are clearly effective in every type of person with diabetes
Professor Colin Baigent

After five years, 42 fewer people with diabetes had major problems, such as heart attacks or stroke, for every 1,000 treated with statins.

The only exceptions for treatment should be those with exceptionally low risk, such as children or those who cannot take the drugs for other reasons, such as pregnant women.

Study leader Professor Colin Baigent said there had been some debate about whether statins would have the same benefits in people with diabetes as those with heart disease in general.

"People with diabetes are a clearly defined group of people at an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

"What we're saying is statins are clearly effective in every type of person with diabetes."

Diabetes UK estimates 60% of all diabetics currently receive statins. That would mean the vast majority of the remaining 40% could also benefit from these drugs, according to the researchers.

However, Douglas Smallwood, chief executive of Diabetes UK, recommended statins for people with diabetes over the age of 40 or diabetics younger than 40 with another risk factor.

"Diabetes UK also strongly recommends that good diabetes management should rely not only on medication, but also on a healthy lifestyle and diet," he added.

Monday, 7 January 2008

Calculate calories burned by exercise

reposted from:

Activity Time Calories
Cycling 30 minutes 355
Walking 30 minutes 178
  • Total minutes: 60
  • Total calories: 533

450-549 calories:

What have I burnt off? 1 tuna mayonnaise baguette, or half a pepperoni pizza.