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« From couch potato to marathon man in less than a year | Main | Most doctors see religion as beneficial, study says »

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Today's Globe: Guidant, anemia drug, marathon medical tent, Frank Westheimer, FDA screening

The Food and Drug Administration has lifted a warning letter that had been hanging over the Guidant division of Boston Scientific Corp., the medical-device maker said yesterday, freeing the Natick company to introduce products that had been blocked by quality-control problems.

One in four cancer patients given Amgen Inc.'s Aranesp anemia drug in a study died after 19 weeks, a rate about 5 points higher than among those on a placebo, a finding likely to make doctors more cautious about the product.

medical tent 150.bmpConditions during yesterday's Boston Marathon weren't as drastic as predicted -- the temperature was higher -- but the wind, rain, and cold combined to make it a challenging race for medical personnel (left), who had prepared for the worst.

Retired Harvard University professor Frank H. Westheimer, a major force in 20th century chemistry who served as a science adviser to President Lyndon Johnson, died Saturday of natural causes at his home in Cambridge, relatives said yesterday. He was 95.

Senator Edward M. Kennedy is leading efforts in Congress to pass legislation to overhaul the Food and Drug Administration. Such reform is needed, but the proposed legislation is so weak that it is unlikely to save any lives, write Judy Norsigian, executive director of Our Bodies Ourselves, and Diana Zuckerman, president of the National Research Center for Women & Families, in an opinion piece.

An FDA proposal to ban anyone with a financial interest of $50,000 or greater from taking part in an FDA advisory panel is a vain political effort to placate the medical journal editors, ethicists, and bureaucrats who enforce conflict-of-interest regulations, writes Dr. Thomas P. Stossel of Harvard Medical School and Brigham & Women's Hospital on the op-ed page.

Posted by Elizabeth Cooney at 06:23 AM
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