The Health News – 11 December 2015

Overview:
• The federal court has overturned findings of serious health and safety risks at two Queensland nursing homes. In February, a sanction was imposed on Karinya Village at Laidley, west of Brisbane, and a non-compliance notice issued to Kepnock Grove at Bundaberg, in response to abuse and neglect allegations.

• According to study by Norwegian and Australian exercise scientists, Not only is it true that the fitter you are, the less likely it is you’ll die of pretty much any health condition you can name. But being fit may be enough to compensate for the health risks posed by extended sitting — a finding that seems to contradict what we’ve been told about sitting’s harms for years.

• The Australian Cancer Research Centre will provide $2 million to the Australian Synchrotron in Melbourne for a new detector that will make the analysis of malfunctioning proteins — which cause diseases, including cancer — 10 times faster.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 11th December 2015. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-10/federal-court-overturns-findings-carinity-health-safety-risk/7017896

The federal court has overturned findings of serious health and safety risks at two Queensland nursing homes.

In February, a sanction was imposed on Karinya Village at Laidley, west of Brisbane, and a non-compliance notice issued to Kepnock Grove at Bundaberg, in response to abuse and neglect allegations.

In June, the sanction was quashed after investigations failed to find evidence to substantiate the claims.

Despite that, reference to “serious risks” remained on the Aged Care Quality Agency website.

The agency has been ordered to pay $25,000 to Carinity Aged Care, who runs the nursing homes, and to remove all reference to the serious risk report.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-10/sitting-kills-but-being-fit-might-help-keep-you-safe/7017354

Looking for motivation to get fit? An important new study by Norwegian and Australian exercise scientists may just do the trick.

Not only is it true that the fitter you are, the less likely it is you’ll die of pretty much any health condition you can name.

But being fit may be enough to compensate for the health risks posed by extended sitting — a finding that seems to contradict what we’ve been told about sitting’s harms for years.

The finding, based on a study of more than 26,000 people, relates to one of the scarier bits of health news of the last decade — that sitting for long periods raises your odds of developing diabetes, heart disease and some cancers, as well as of dying early from any cause.

When we sit, our leg and trunk muscles are inactive and this can lead to a potentially-harmful build-up of sugars and fats in our blood.

Worse still, we’ve been told being active at other times of the day was not enough to offset the health risks of sitting. So going for a run or to the gym after work would not make up for the damage to your body from spending the bulk of your day sitting at your desk.

But the new finding by researchers from Norwegian University of Science and Technology and the University of Queensland suggests sitting for more than seven hours a day may not necessarily be so harmful if you are fit. It is the first time this has been shown.

The study was published in Medicine & Science in Sport & Exercise, the official journal of the American College of Sports Medicine.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-10/cancer-drug-development-set-to-speed-up-with-new-technology/7016230

Scientists in Melbourne expect the development of cancer drugs to speed up after being awarded a grant for a crucial piece of technology.

The Australian Cancer Research Centre will provide $2 million to the Australian Synchrotron in Melbourne for a new detector that will make the analysis of malfunctioning proteins — which cause diseases, including cancer — 10 times faster.

Australian Synchrotron director Andrew Peele said the new detector would ultimately lead to the development of new cancer drugs.

“The one we currently have is very outdated, it is very slow and what this funding is going to allow us to do is upgrade the detector,” he said.

“Effectively it will be like going from a dial-up connection to broadband.”

There are only a few synchrotron facilities in the world with this technology.

The synchrotron uses a process called “micro crystallography” to analyse proteins, where powerful X-ray beams are shone onto crystals. The signals from this are then picked up by the detector.

The research is then used to help understand how cancer begins and spreads.

“What crystallography does is, if you can take those proteins and make them form crystals, then using the Synchrotron you can understand their exact structure,” Mr Peele said.

     

“Once you have structure, then you can get an idea as to their function and that’s what this detector is going to let us do.”

Under existing technology the detector takes seven to 10 minutes to sweep up a data set. Its successor will produce one in less than a minute.

Mr Peele said Australia had some of the best researchers in the world who should now be able to make even more cancer-related discoveries.

“We’ve already had some wonderful examples where researchers have made those basic discoveries, worked with some very large drug companies, developed drugs and are now getting them onto market,” he said.

“But every time they do that it’s a huge piece of work. So what this detector is going to let us do, is really get that pipeline flowing.”

Deputy director of St Vincent’s Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne, Professor Michael Parker, said the information would directly boost cancer drug development in Australia.

“Arming researchers with clear representations of protein structures supports efforts to design drugs that target particular proteins, to boost their anti-cancer properties or suppress their cancer-enabling effects,” he said.

The new detector will come online in 2017.

 

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