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Further Work on Epigenetic Changes that Occur With Aging

Posted: April 29, 2012 at 3:50 pm

Via ScienceDaily: researchers "have identified a group of 'aging' genes that are switched on and off by natural mechanisms called epigenetic factors, influencing the rate of healthy aging and potential longevity. The study also suggests these epigenetic processes - that can be caused by external factors such as diet, lifestyle and environment - are likely to be initiated from an early age and continue through a person's life. The researchers say that the epigenetic changes they have identified could be used as potential 'markers' of biological aging and in the future could be possible targets for anti-aging therapies. ... the study looked at 172 twins aged 32 to 80 from the TwinsUK cohort. The researchers looked for epigenetic changes in the twins' DNA, and performed epigenome-wide association scans to analyze these changes in relation to chronological age. They identified 490 age related epigenetic changes. They also analysed DNA modifications in age related traits and found that epigenetic changes in four genes relate to cholesterol, lung function and maternal longevity. To try to identify when these epigenetic changes may be triggered, the researchers replicated the study in 44 younger twins, aged 22 to 61, and found that many of the 490 age related epigenetic changes were also present in this younger group. The researchers say these results suggest that while many age related epigenetic changes happen naturally with age throughout a person's life, a proportion of these changes may be initiated early in life."

Link: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120419191709.htm


Insights into Aging from the Study of Flies

Posted: at 3:49 pm

An open access review paper looks at how the study of fly aging has informed the life sciences: "it is likely that not all senescent physiological changes revealed in flies can be simply translated to humans. However, flies and humans often show very similar age-related physiological phenotypes suggesting that at least some of the basic biological properties and mechanisms that regulate longevity are conserved amongst species. ... It is well-known that advances in medicine and health care have significantly contributed to increased longevity in humans over the last 100 years. There is also a clear trend toward increased life expectancy including an increase in the numbers of people living to an advanced age and the number of people with chronic age-related diseases. These trends emphasize the need to understand the genetic and physiological factors underlying biological aging and particularly, those that promote healthy aging. ... there are three ways to extend lifespan: increasing early survival rate, increasing late survival rate, or delaying senescence. Remarkably, the first two do not affect basic aging processes. For example, the first one leads to a significant increase in mean but not maximum lifespan, while the second one leads to change in a maximum but not mean lifespan. Delayed senescence, in turn, leads to a significant increase in both the mean and maximum lifespan. ... This raises the question as to whether healthspan and delayed senescence are inter related. As stated above, while many genes have been shown to extend lifespan, these may have little or no ability to delay physiological senescence. In other words, the period of functional disability before death may increase despite the fact that the total duration of life is increased. Thus, the search for appropriate biomarkers applicable to monitor functional senescence is highly important with regards to healthy aging and age-related diseases." These cautions are very much focused on the mainstream research goals of slowing the rate of aging through genetic and metabolic alterations; they have little relevance to efforts aimed at producing continuous repair of aging.

Link: http://www.frontiersin.org/Integrative_Physiology/10.3389/fphys.2012.00106/full


The FDA is a Destructive Force

Posted: at 3:49 pm

The employees and appointees of the US Food and Drug Administration have caused an incredible destruction of value and progress over the time that the agency has existed. Their regulatory policies become ever more onerous with each passing year, as unaccountable bureaucrats follow their incentives: nothing good can happen to their careers as a result of approving new technologies, and nothing bad tends to happen to their careers as a result of making it really, really hard to bring new medicine to the clinic. So of course you wind up with an organization whose members collectively pay nothing more than lip service to their declared mission, while working to make sure that medicine stays moribund in a slow-motion stasis. This is most evident in the cancer research community, largely because of its size, but it applies just as evenly across all forms of medicine:

A 2010 study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by researchers from the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas found that the time from drug discovery to marketing increased from eight years in 1960 to 12 to 15 years in 2010. Five years of this increase results from new regulations boosting the lengths and costs of clinical trials. The regulators aim to prevent cancer patients from dying from toxic new drugs. However, the cancer researchers calculate that the delays caused by requirements for lengthier trials have instead resulted in the loss of 300,000 patient life-years while saving only 16 life-years.

To add to this picture, you must also see incumbent Big Pharma entities and their executives and lobbyists - a deeply enmeshed network of regulatory capture. They are far more willing to use the current system as a weapon to suppress disruptive innovation in their industry than to be a source of innovation themselves. So it goes, just as in any other heavily regulated market. The strategic goals of the major players wind up having very little to do with creating beneficial change, and everything to do with keeping things the same as they are now.

As I've said in the past, it is a waste of energy to fight this. That's a money pit, and resources are better spent on creating actual progress than lining the pockets of politicians, their lackeys, and other corrupt cogs in the system. Work around the roadblock instead: start companies and partner for research development outside the US. Deliver services in Asia and take advantage of cheap flights and the growing medical tourism industry. The only way that the FDA will whither away is to make it entirely irrelevant - and as the bureaucrats keep piling on the costs, erecting an ever higher barrier to actually developing any new medicine in the US, that will become a more popular option. You can be sure that the wealthier and more connected individuals who make regulations and advocate for ever greater powers to accrue to the FDA will be amongst the first flying beyond the US to undergo newer therapies - treatments that they have managed to make illegal or too expensive to exist in their own country.

Some more on this topic:

Though the United States urgently needs new treatments for common illnesses such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, the nation's system for drug approval discourages innovation and investment, especially for our most pressing public health challenges. In this paper, we find that the main culprit is the high cost of Phase III clinical trials, which are required for FDA approval of most drugs. We examined drug development in four major public health areas and discovered that for any given drug on the market, typically 90 percent or more of that drug's development costs are incurred in Phase III trials. These costs have skyrocketed in recent years, exacerbating an already serious problem.

The enormous cost and risk of Phase III trials create incentives for researchers and investors to avoid work on medications for the chronic conditions and illnesses that pose the greatest threat to Americans, in terms of health spending and in terms of the number of people affected. This avoidance, in turn, harms overall U.S. health outcomes and drives up the cost of health care.


Rapamycin and Oxidative Stress in Adult Stem Cells

Posted: at 3:49 pm

Following on from research into the mechanisms of rapamycin released earlier this month, here is more on the way it might generate its benefits to longevity in laboratory mammals: "Balancing quiescence with proliferation is of paramount importance for adult stem cells in order to avoid hyperproliferation and cell depletion. In some models, stem cell exhaustion may be reversed with the drug rapamycin, which was shown can suppress cellular senescence in vitro and extend lifespan in animals. We hypothesized that rapamycin increases the expression of oxidative stress response genes in adult stem cells, and that these gene activities diminish with age. To test our hypothesis, we exposed mice to rapamycin and then examined the transcriptome of their spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs). Gene expression microarray analysis revealed that numerous oxidative stress response genes were upregulated upon rapamycin treatment ... When we examined the expression of these genes in 55-week-old wild type SSCs, their levels were significantly reduced compared to 3-week-old SSCs, suggesting that their downregulation is coincident with the aging process in adult stem cells. We conclude that rapamycin-induced stimulation of oxidative stress response genes may promote cellular longevity in SSCs, while a decline in gene expression in aged stem cells could reflect the SSCs' diminished potential to alleviate oxidative stress, a hallmark of aging."

Link: http://impactaging.com/papers/v4/n4/full/100451.html


Less Hand Osteoarthritis in Longer-Lived Populations

Posted: at 3:49 pm

Age-related diseases are among the more visible signs of accumulated biological damage that occurs over time - aging is damage. So we should expect to see less of all such conditions in longer lived populations, and here researchers demonstrate that point for osteoarthritis: "Previous studies have reported that centenarians escape the major age-related diseases. No studies on prevalence and severity of osteoarthritis (OA) in longevity population have previously been reported. Because OA is associated with morbidity and mortality, we hypothesized that radiographic hand OA would generally be less prevalent and would develop at a later age in longevity populations vs non-longevity populations. ... Longevity index was calculated as a ratio of the number of individuals aged [greater than] 90 years vs the number of people aged [greater than] 60, expressed per mil. A population with longevity index [greater than] 40 was considered as a longevity population. ... A significant difference in age standardized prevalence of hand OA was found between each pair of studied samples ... We observed that the pattern of radiographic hand OA in longevity populations differs from the pattern in non-longevity populations. On average, first joints with OA appear at an older age, and progression of hand OA [is] slower."

Link: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22526078


An Interview with Michael Batin

Posted: at 3:48 pm

The 2nd International Conference on the Genetics of Aging and Longevity is presently underway in Moscow, organized by the active Russian arm of the longevity research community - such as the folk behind the Science for Life Extension Foundation - and well-attended by notable life science researchers from around the world. Earlier this month, the Moscow News ran an interview with Michael Batin, one of the organizers. His views are representative of the Russian community, whose members tend to be forthright and direct when it comes to the end goals of longevity science: to defeat aging entirely, banish the suffering it causes, and usher in an era of ageless humans. More power to them - we could do with a lot more of that sort of outspoken advocacy here in the Anglosphere.

The quoted passages below are run through Google's automated translation engine, which unfortunately still butchers Russian:

Q: What is the real goal that we set ourselves right now? Can you say, talk about extending the life of ten years from now?

MB: In ten years? It is not even present, and yesterday. It has long been proven that reducing caloric intake [and even] just a healthy lifestyle [lead to a longer life]. Our goal is different - a victory over an aging, it is by and large the whole purpose of medical science. After all, if you think about all of the doctors [dedicated to the] prolongation of life, the estrangement of death. A person does not want to die right now, well, anti-aging does not differ fundamentally, it is also the struggle with death.

Q: So you're talking about immortality?

MB: Yes. This is the ultimate goal. In the coming ten years, you can raise the life expectancy [to] 150 years, with adequate [resources and large enough research community]. If, for example, to do research megaproject like the American lunar program. And if we know in ten years that will live more than a hundred years, this will give us more time to find a way to further extend [life].

Q: But how? Are there any pills?

MB: If you're talking about a miracle pill, then, of course not. Aging depends on many factors, and is now the main problem is just that we do not know them all. And the proposed mega-project just involves a systematic search for the causes of aging.


Q: And it's all in the mega-project? [It's] going to cost [a] quite impossibly high sum.

MB: But now we are spending huge amounts of money on arms - you've seen defense spending in Russia? - And do not invest in [biogerontology], fundamental research on the causes of aging. Even in the U.S., [where] gerontology takes a billion dollars, [that is] their total spending, of that billion is spent on Alzheimer's disease, [on] geriatrics, and [only a small fraction of it on] the fundamental work on finding the root causes of aging.

Research is always the red-haired stepchild of human endeavors, small and neglected behind the bread, circuses, and cathedrals of destruction. But what can one person do about that? Best not to be too weighed down by the essential insanity of the human condition as we have collectively managed to engineer it. It won't actually require more than a few tens of millions of people to decide they want to make a difference and devote some modest effort towards doing something about aging - a community that large, distributed around the world, could assemble the necessary funds and researchers to, for example, complete the SENS project to demonstrate robust rejuvenation in mice. Everyone else can go on building bombs and monuments if they so desire, but the things that matter will still get done, as they have always done, by a motivated tiny minority.

Long after the time in which anyone can easily recall who was US president in 2011, or what party was in power, or which wars of declining empire were fought, and then long after anyone even cares about that ancient history, and later, long after the whole downward slope of the history of the US is but a footnote of interest to scholars of the transition from second to third millennium, and later still, long after anyone can even find out with any great reliability who was US president in 2011 ... long after all these things are forgotten, the first half of the 21st century will still be clearly recalled as the dawn of the era in which aging was conquered.

Progress in science and technology is really the only thing that matters in the long term.


Two Drugs Safe for Rare Forms of Kidney Cancer

Posted: at 3:48 pm

(HealthDay News) --
Using a combination of the drugs temsirolimus (Torisel) and Bryostatin appears
to be safe in patients with metastatic kidney cancer, according to early data
from 25 patients in a phase 1 trial.

The researchers said a pathway known as mTOR signaling promotes tumor cell
proliferation and tumor blood vessel development. The temsirolimus-bryostatin
combination blocks two portions of the mTOR signaling pathway, and the early
data suggests the drugs may be active in patients with rare forms of renal cell
cancer that are less likely to respond to other therapies.

"We have certainly seen sustained responses with this combination, which
are encouraging," Dr. Elizabeth Plimack, a medical oncologist and attending
physician at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, said in a news release
from the center.

"Patients with non-clear cell renal cell cancer, including papillary renal
cancer, don't respond as well to tyrosine kinase inhibitors, such as sunitinib [Sutent]
and sorafenib [Nexavar], as patients with clear cell renal cell. So there is an
unmet need for therapy for these patients. We've seen that this combination may
be active to some degree for them," Plimack said.

The findings were to be presented Sunday at the American Society of Clinical
Oncology annual meeting, in Orlando, Fla. Read more…


A Herpesvirus saimiri-based vector expressing TRAIL induces cell death in human carcinoma cell lines and multicellular spheroid cultures.

Posted: at 3:48 pm

Authors: Turrell SJ, Macnab SA, Rose A, Melcher AA, Whitehouse A
Herpesvirus saimiri (HVS) is capable of infecting a range of human carcinoma cell types with high efficiency and the viral genome persists as high copy number, circular, non-integrated episomes which segregate to progeny upon cell division. This allows HVS-based vectors to stably transduce a dividing cell population and provide sustained transgene expression for an extended period of time both in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, the insertion of a bacterial artificial chromosome cassette into the HVS genome simplifies the incorporation of large amounts of heterologous DNA for gene delivery. Herein we have produced a recombinant HVS-based vector containing full-length human TRAIL under the control of the ?-survi...

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California Stem Cell Agency Wants to Weaken Financial Disclosure for Execs and Board

Posted: at 3:48 pm

The $3 billion California stem cell agency, which is moving to engage the biotech industry ever more closely, is proposing a major weakening of the financial disclosure requirements for its board of directors and executives.

The move comes as the agency is also seeking to raise cash from the private sector to continue the state research effort's existence.  CIRM's dimming of transparency runs counter to government trends nationally for more disclosure rather than less, including regulations enacted last year by the NIH.

The proposed changes will be considered next Thursday by the CIRM directors' Governance Subcommittee, which will have public teleconference sites in San Francisco and Irvine and two each in Los Angeles and La Jolla.

Currently CIRM board members and top executives must disclose all their investments and income – in a general way – along with California real property that they hold. Under the changes, disclosures would instead be required only "if the business entity or source of income is of the type to receive grants or other monies from or through the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine." CIRM offered no explanation of what it means by "of the type to receive" funds from the agency.

The proposal further narrows disclosure in connection with income or investments in enterprises that provide facilities or services used by CIRM. With the removal of the requirement for reporting all investments, CIRM's changes also specified disclosure of income and investments connected to business entities (nonprofits are not mentioned) that are engaged in biomedical research or the manufacture of biomedical pharmaceuticals.

The new code would appear to give CIRM directors and executives wide personal latitude in determining what should be disclosed. The current language simply states that "all" investments, etc., must be disclosed. That language originated in the 1974 ballot initiative that created the state disclosure requirements. The initiative's intent was to give the public and interested parties access to key information that would allow them to determine what forces are at work in government and whether conflicts of interests exist – as opposed to simply trusting the assertions of officials without additional substantiation.

The new code also appears to relieve CIRM officials of reporting investment in or income from venture capital or other firms that may be engaged in financing biotech or stem cell enterprises, since the firms do not receive cash from CIRM or engage in biomedical research.

While the code appears to provide more reporting freedom for board members and executives, it also may indirectly impose a burden on them to determine whether any of their investments may involve biomedical research or enterprises that could possibly receive funds from CIRM at some point

Earlier this week, the California Stem Cell Report asked the stem cell agency about such issues. Kevin McCormack, CIRM's new senior director of public communications and patient advocate outreach, replied that the changes were "proposed" by the state Fair Political Practices Commission, which oversees state disclosure laws.

He said the FPPC says agencies "should tailor their disclosure categories to type of work performed by the agency."

McCormack cited as examples the State Board of Education and the state retirement system.

As for the specific changes in CIRM's code, McCormack said,

"Because these are the types of entities that are likely to create potential conflicts of interest, we believe the disclosure categories are appropriate."

McCormack did not comment on whether the proposed code would give board members more reporting latitude or whether it relieve them of reporting investments tied to the financing of biotech or stem cell firms. (The text of his response can be found here.)

The California Stem Cell Report is querying the FPPC concerning its policy regarding disclosure codes. CIRM's new code is expected to go before the the full CIRM board in late May. The changes are subject to review by the FPPC and then must formally go through the state administrative law process during which the public can comment and the code modified before final adoption.

Our take? The proposed changes are not in the best interests of CIRM or the people of California. The absence of transparency and disclosure only breeds suspicious speculation of the worst sort. The agency is already burdened by conflicts of interest that are built in by the ballot measure that created it in 2004. Nearly all of the $1.3 billion that CIRM has handed out has gone to institutions linked to CIRM directors. Weakening disclosure at a time when the biotech industry will become more closely tied to CIRM inevitably raises questions about financial linkages – present and future – between CIRM directors and executives and industry. For the past seven years, CIRM directors and staff have been able to comply with
more complete disclosure. They should continue to do so for the life of the agency, which will expire in less than a decade unless it finds additional sources of cash.


Text of CIRM Response on the Weakening of Financial Disclosure Requirements

Posted: at 3:48 pm

On April 24, the California Stem Cell
asked the state stem cell agency about its proposed changes
in its requirements for financial disclosures from its officials.
Here are the key elements from that query with the stem cell agency's
response following.
The agency was invited to respond to
the following: "The new code appears
to give discretion to the employee to determine what enterprise is
'the type to receive grants or other monies' from CIRM. Additionally,
it would not appear to require disclosure of an investment with or
income from, for example, Kleiner Perkins, which is a major investor
in iPierian, which holds $7 million in CIRM grants and could well be
a future applicant...(T)he weakening of the code comes at a time when
the agency is moving to cozy up to industry and looking to raise
funds to continue its existence, all of which raises even greater
conflict of interest issues than earlier in CIRM's existence."
Here is the text of the response April
25 from Kevin McCormack, CIRM's new senior director for public
communications and patient advocate outreach.

"In answer to your question, we
are proposing changes to the Conflict of Interest Code based upon
recommendations from the California Fair Political Practices
Commission (FPPC). The Political Reform Act requires state
agencies like CIRM to review their Conflict of Interest Codes every
two years.  The FPPC, which is charged with enforcing the
Political Reform Act, is responsible for reviewing and approving
CIRM's Conflict of Interest Code.  In preparation for this
review, CIRM's counsel met with the FPPC staff who suggested the
proposed amendments which are the subject of the upcoming Governance
Subcommittee meeting.  The proposed amendments to CIRM's
Conflict of Interest Code are consistent with the FPPC's position
that agencies should tailor their disclosure categories to type of
work performed by the agency.  For example, CalPERS's
conflict of interest code requires CalPERS officials to disclose
investments in, and income from, entities that are of the type with
which CalPERS contracts and entities in which funds administered by
CalPERS could be invested.  Likewise, the State Board of
Education requires its members to disclose investments, business
positions, and income from a publisher, manufacturer, or vendor of
instructional materials, or services offered to educational
institutions in the State of California and investments, positions of
management and income from any private school in the State of
California.  Similar to these codes, the FPPC proposed that
CIRM's Code be tailored to the nature of CIRM's work.  Thus,
the FPPC proposed that CIRM require its board members and high-level
employees to disclose investments in, and income from, entities that
are of the type with which CIRM would contract or from which CIRM
could procure goods or services as well as investments in, and income
from, biotech and pharmaceutical companies.  Because these
are the types of entities that are likely to create potential
conflicts of interest, we believe the disclosure categories are
appropriate.  It is important to remember, however, that
this is a preliminary proposal.  CIRM will seek input from
the Governance Subcommittee, the Board, and members of the public
before seeking approval of the amendments."


Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Applauds Senate Agriculture Committee for Funding Key Nutrition Programs in Farm Bill

Posted: at 1:16 am

Newswise CHICAGO The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics praises the Senate Agriculture Committee for approving legislation that will fund key nutrition programs that empower Americans with the knowledge to make healthful food choices.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) and Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) funded in the Farm Bill and provided in community settings have been shown to improve healthful eating behaviors to help reduce chronic disease, said registered dietitian and Academy President Sylvia A. Escott-Stump.

In addition, the Academy commends efforts to maintain the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program for students to help develop life-long healthful eating habits, Escott-Stump said.

The Academy thanks Sens. Debbie Stabenow (Mich.) and Pat Roberts (Kan.) for their bipartisan leadership in developing a draft bill that will help improve the health of Americans through good nutrition.

We realize we are in tough economic times, but the Academy urges the committee not to cut access for many Americans who rely on SNAP to feed their families, Escott-Stump said. Often overlooked is the fact that SNAP reduced the poverty rate by nearly 8 percent in 2009, a significant factor for families and communities.

SNAP also helps stimulate the local economy at a time when it is most needed. For every $5 in new SNAP benefits $9.20 is generated in total economic activity.

It is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that systematic and sustained action is needed to achieve food and nutrition security for all in the United States. Therefore, the Academy will continue to work with these Congressional leaders to make sure all Americans have access to healthy and safe foods. We will also work to make sure there is funding for nutrition research in the bill, so future decisions are made based on evidence, with solid science to back them up, Escott-Stump said.

The Academy will continue its efforts with other key partners in the public health, anti-hunger and agriculture communities to help assure passage of an effective Farm Bill.

### The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association) is the worlds largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nations health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics at http://www.eatright.org.

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Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Applauds Senate Agriculture Committee for Funding Key Nutrition Programs in Farm Bill

Sports nutrition offers big opportunities for $775M US probiotic supplement market

Posted: at 1:16 am

Sports nutrition offers a great opportunity to expand the $2.7 bn global probiotic supplement market, with products like Gasparis Myofusion leading the field.

Speaking at last weeks International Probiotics Associations World Congress in Universal City, CA, Chris Schmidt from Euromonitor International revealed that the global retail value for probiotic supplements in 2011 was estimated at $2.7 bn, with 19% increase in growth.

The greatest growth year-on-year is in the US, with 22% or $140 million, followed by Italy with 20% growth (or $100 million).

Looking forward from 2011-2016, Schmidt said that both the US would be worth $1.5 billion, while Italy would be $798 million.

Pricing remains an issue for supplements, however, with probiotics tablets and capsules considerably higher in price than multivitamins, he said.

Sports nutrition

There are great opportunities for probiotics in the sports nutrition sector, he said, with Gasparis Myofusion Probiotic Series one example of a fast growing consumer brand.

The series uses Ganeden Biotech's BC30 strain, and Michael Bush, VP of business development at Ganeden Biotech, told NutraIngredients-USA that the company sees sports nutrition as a market that is in need of product innovation in several key areas, namely immune and gut health.

It is commonly understood that the type of training elite athletes put their bodies through often suppresses the bodys immune response, but that immune effect is seen in weekend warriors as well. Additionally, nutritional supplementation, especially with large quantities of protein has a tendency to cause GI distress.

Ganeden is working with sports nutrition companies around the globe to provide solutions to those two primary issues through inclusion of GanedenBC30 in sports nutrition products. We are also spending a fair amount of our resources studying applications and performing clinical work to identify further opportunities to help athletes, said Bush.

Read more:
Sports nutrition offers big opportunities for $775M US probiotic supplement market

F3 Nutrition Appoints Mark Post As President

Posted: at 1:16 am

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Posted April 27, 2012

Mark Post

Company to Launch Comprehensive Nutrition Product Line in June 2012

DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla., -- F3 Nutrition, LLC, the company that was created to meet the absolute Fit , Form and Function of athletes' needs, today announced Mark Post as its new President and that the nutrition industry veteran and leading expert will direct all aspects of the organization starting with the F3 Nutrition product launch in June 2012.

"I am honored to join F3 Nutrition and look forward to making it known as one of the most prominent brands in sports nutrition," said Post. "It is our goal at F3 Nutrition to provide a complete line of exceptional sports nutritional performance products that are both safe and effective. F3 Nutrition supplements will enable athletes as well anyone committed to an active healthy lifestyle to achieve their individual fitness and performance goals."

With over 16 years of experience in the nutritional supplement industry, Post previously served as President for legendary Champion Nutrition where he supervised sports nutrition sales, marketing and product development. While at Champion, Mark developed, launched and the licensed TapouT Sports Nutrition, one of the first brands to market in the sport of mixed martial arts. Prior to joining Champion, Mark held management positions with supplement companies Rainbow Light, Garden of Life and Rexall Sundown.

Fortified through science and with ingredients proven in university studies to improve athletes' performance and their bodies, F3 Nutrition will unveil a full line of products to address individual athletic and fitness needs from start to finish.

F3 Nutrition focuses on the three critical elements in building a successful high-performance sports nutrition product: Fit for the specific purpose; deliver through the best Form available; Function for the specific goal of the individual.

The F3 Nutrition portfolio will consist of pre-training and post-training products and also protein and health wellness category products. Each of the company's products will contain unique to market formulations to assist in endurance, strength and recovery. One of the first brands to launch this summer will be Air-SpeedTM Endurance, which will give much needed support to endurance athletes via a pre-training drink mix.

Original post:
F3 Nutrition Appoints Mark Post As President

President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition Announces 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

Posted: at 1:16 am

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire -04/27/12)- In honor of National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, the President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition (PCFSN) will pay tribute to the 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award winners at their annual meeting on May 1, 2012.

Presented annually since 2007, the Lifetime Achievement Award is given to individuals whose careers have greatly contributed to the advancement or promotion of physical activity, fitness, sports, and nutrition-related programs nationwide. Recipients are selected by members of PCFSN based on the span and scope of an individual's career, the estimated number of lives they have touched, and the impact of their legacy.

2012 PCFSN Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

Linn Goldberg, M.D. - Dr. Goldberg is Professor of Medicine and Chief of the Division of Health Promotion & Sports Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University. His groundbreaking programs for young athletes (ATLAS for boys and ATHENA for girls) utilize exercise and nutrition alternatives to prevent the use of alcohol, performance enhancing and illicit drugs.

Thomas McKenzie, Ph.D. - Dr. McKenzie is Emeritus professor in the San Diego State University School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences. Dr. McKenzie has authored or co-authored over 170 publications and co-founded SPARK -- a nationally recognized research-based public health organization dedicated to improve health through physical activity. In March 2012, he was awarded a Hall of Fame Award from the National Association for Sport and Physical Education.

Jacki Sorensen - Sorensen is the originator of Aerobic Dancing -- the complete fitness program that combines health and toning benefits of jogging with the fun of dancing. Sorensen is the President and founder of Jacki's Inc.

Charles Sterling, Ed.D. - Sterling is Chairman of Youth Initiatives at The Cooper Institute and Chairman of the FITNESSGRAM Board of Trustees. Dr. Sterling is best known professionally as the founder of the widely-used FITNESSGRAM, a health-related testing and feedback system for youth.

Pat Summitt - Summitt is Hall of Fame University of Tennessee Head Women's Basketball Coach Emeritus. Summitt has won more games than anyone else in NCAA college basketball history, winning eight national titles and 1,098 games at Tennessee.

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President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition Announces 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

Grand Reopening Weekend Set for Newly Remodeled Life Time Fitness Apex Center April 28-29

Posted: at 1:16 am

Life Time Fitness (NYSE: LTM - News):

Note to editors, news directors and photo departments: Media seeking access to the club prior to the event or with special requests should contact KJ Leinberger at 952-229-7162 or kleinberger@lifetimefitness.com.

About Life Time Fitness, Inc. As The Healthy Way of Life Company, Life Time Fitness (NYSE: LTM - News) helps organizations, communities and individuals achieve their total health objectives, athletic aspirations and fitness goals by engaging in their areas of interest or discovering new passions both inside and outside of Life Times distinctive and large sports, professional fitness, family recreation and spa destinations, most of which operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Companys healthy way of life approach enables customers to achieve this by providing the best programs, people and places of exceptional quality and value. As of April 12, 2012, the Company operated 98 centers under the LIFE TIME FITNESS and LIFE TIME ATHLETIC(SM) brands in the United States and Canada. Life Time also operated six additional acquired facilities, which are in transition to become Life Time centers. Experience Life Time on the web at lifetimefitness.com and facebook.com/lifetimefitness. Learn more about the Life Time Foundation and the Companys work in the community at ltffoundation.org.

Grand Reopening Weekend Set for Newly Remodeled Life Time Fitness Apex Center April 28-29

Health Highlights: April 25, 2012

Posted: at 1:15 am

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Case of Mad Cow Disease Discovered in California

A fourth case of mad cow disease has been diagnosed in the United States, this time in California, but it poses no danger to human health, U.S. Agriculture Department officials said Tuesday.

"There is really no cause for alarm here with regard to this animal [a dairy cow]," USDA Chief Veterinary Officer John Clifford said during an afternoon news conference.

According to the Associated Press, Clifford did not say when the disease was discovered or exactly where the dairy cow had been raised. He said the animal was at a rendering plant in central California when mad cow disease was diagnosed during routine testing.

Mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), can be fatal to humans who eat the tainted beef, but the wire service reported that the World Health Organization has said that tests show humans cannot be infected by drinking milk from diseased animals. In people, eating contaminated meat is linked to variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, a rare and deadly nerve disease.

There have been three confirmed cases of mad cow disease in the United States, in Washington state in 2003, in Texas in 2005 and in Alabama in 2006, the AP reported.

Only a handful of cases of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease have been confirmed in people living in the United States, according to the AP, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said those were linked to meat products in the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia.


Report Challenges VA Claims on Speed of Mental Health Care

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Health Highlights: April 25, 2012

Independent Study Shows That Health Insurers Will Pay $1.3 Billion in Rebates

Posted: at 1:15 am

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire -04/27/12)- Health insurance companies' shares fell Thursday as independent study showed that health insurers will pay $1.3 billion in rebates. Nearly half of that sum is expected to be paid back from four major insurers: United Healthcare Group Inc., WellPoint Inc., Aetna Inc. and Coventry Health Care Inc. according to Goldman Sachs. The Paragon Report examines investing opportunities in the Health Care Plans Industry and provides equity research on WellPoint, Inc. (WLP - News) and Coventry Health Care, Inc. (CVH - News).

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Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act health insurers must spend 80 percent of premiums from individuals and small businesses, and 85 percent of premiums from large employers on health expenses and quality improvements. If an insurer does not spend enough on health costs it must refund the difference back to the consumer. According to a study published by the Kaiser Family Foundation approximately 31 percent of individual policyholders, or around 3.4 million people, are expected to get rebates.

Paragon Report releases regular market updates on the Health Care Plans Industry so investors can stay ahead of the crowd and make the best investment decisions to maximize their returns. Take a few minutes to register with us free at http://www.ParagonReport.com and get exclusive access to our numerous stock reports and industry newsletters.

WellPoint is expected to pay out around $94 million on $33.2 billion in eligible premiums. The company announced that first quarter 2012 net income was $856.5 million, or $2.53 per share, including net investment gains of $62.4 million after-tax, or approximately $0.19 per share. Net income in the first quarter of 2011 was $926.6 million, or $2.44 per share, including net investment gains of $35.6 million after-tax, or approximately $0.09 per share.

Coventry Health Care is a diversified national managed healthcare company based in Bethesda, Maryland. The Company announced that they will release first quarter 2012 financial results on Friday, April 27, 2012. Allen F. Wise, Chief executive officer, will be hosting a conference call at 8:30 a.m. ET on that day.

Paragon Report provides Market Research focused on equities that offer growth opportunities, value, and strong potential return. We strive to provide the most up-to-date market activities. We constantly create research reports and newsletters for our members. The Paragon Report has not been compensated by any of the above-mentioned companies. We act as independent research portal and are aware that all investment entails inherent risks. Please view the full disclaimer at: http://www.ParagonReport.com/disclaimer

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Independent Study Shows That Health Insurers Will Pay $1.3 Billion in Rebates

Accretive Health Announces Termination of its Quality and Total Cost of Care Services Contract by Fairview Health …

Posted: at 1:15 am


Accretive Health, Inc. (NYSE: AH - News) said today that it has received notice of termination from Fairview Health Services of its Quality and Total Cost of Care (QTCC) services contract. The terms of the transition have yet to be determined. The Company will update its business outlook on its quarterly earnings call on May 9, 2012.

Accretive Health said that it regrets that the recent activities of the Minnesota Attorney General have created a situation where Fairview felt it necessary to cancel its work with the Company in QTCC. The Company intends to work with Fairview to preserve the good results that have been achieved and will continue to invest in this important area.

Accretive Health also said it has received reiterations of support from other clients who recognize the value of Accretive Healths ability to help hospitals and other healthcare providers enhance their quality of care. This show of support is consistent with the Companys mission of being a constructive and positive contributor to the American healthcare system.

About Accretive Health

Accretive Health partners with healthcare providers to help them more effectively manage their revenue cycles, strengthen their financial stability, and improve the quality of care they provide while reducing overall healthcare costs.Our people, processes and sophisticated integrated technology complement our clients' existing resources to enhance results for patients, physicians and staff. For more information, please visit http://www.accretivehealth.com.

Safe Harbor Statement

This document contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding outstanding issues with the Minnesota Attorney General and the Companys efforts to facilitate an orderly transition of its QTCC services at Fairview Health Services, which involve risks and uncertainties. Our actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, including those set forth in our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC on February 29, 2012, under the heading "Risk Factors". The words "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "expects," "intends," "may," "plans," "projects," "would," will, and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. We have based these forward-looking statements on our current expectations and projections about future events. Although we believe that the expectations underlying any of our forward-looking statements are reasonable, these expectations may prove to be incorrect and all of these statements are subject to risks and uncertainties. Should one or more of these risks and uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions, projections, or expectations prove incorrect, actual results, performance, financial condition, or events may vary materially and adversely from those anticipated, estimated, or expected.

All forward-looking statements included in this report are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing cautionary statements. We wish to caution readers not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statement that speaks only as of the date made and to recognize that forward-looking statements are predictions of future results, which may not occur as anticipated. Actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements and from historical results, due to the uncertainties and factors described above, as well as others that we may consider immaterial or do not anticipate at this time. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in our forward-looking statements are reasonable, we do not know whether our expectations will prove correct. Our expectations reflected in our forward-looking statements can be affected by inaccurate assumptions we might make or by known or unknown uncertainties and factors, including those described above. The risks and uncertainties described above are not exclusive, and further information concerning us and our business, including factors that potentially could materially affect our financial results or condition or relationships with customers and potential customers, may emerge from time to time. We assume no, and we specifically disclaim any, obligation to update, amend, or clarify forward-looking statements to reflect actual results or changes in factors or assumptions affecting such forward-looking statements. We advise you, however, to consult any further disclosures we make on related subjects in our periodic reports that we file with or furnish to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

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Accretive Health Announces Termination of its Quality and Total Cost of Care Services Contract by Fairview Health ...

Health Highlights: April 26, 2012

Posted: at 1:15 am

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

No Evidence Cellphones Cause Brain Tumors: Experts

There is no convincing evidence that cellphones cause brain tumors or any other types of cancer, according to British experts who conducted a "comprehensive" review of available scientific evidence.

However, possible long-term health effects of cellphone use need to be monitored because the use of cell phones has become widespread only recently, said the Health Protection Agency's independent advisory group, Agence France-Presse reported.

The group also advised against excessive use of cellphones by children.

"Overall, the results of studies have not demonstrated that the use of mobile phones causes brain tumours or any other type of cancer," the group said, AFP reported. "The evidence suggests that radio frequency field exposure below guideline levels does not cause symptoms in humans."


Measures to Prevent Spread of Mad Cow Disease are Effective: FDA

Existing animal feed safeguards meant to prevent the spread of mad cow disease from spreading through feed are effective, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Thursday.

The FDA was responding to the Department of Agriculture's confirmation this week that a dairy cow in California tested positive for atypical bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, or mad cow disease). The cow did not enter the animal feed or human food supply.

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Health Highlights: April 26, 2012

The healing mind

Posted: at 1:15 am

The mind-body-energy healing connection reflects the power of the mind in influencing our lives.

IN my previous article (Holistic health, Fit4Life, April 15), I gave the broad definition of holistic health, and briefly explored the spiritual aspects, as well as the interaction between the mind, nervous system and the immune system (psychoneuroimmunology).

Today, I shall explore the interaction between the mind, the nervous system, and the energy system (psychoneuroenergetics).

Everything in the universe functions through an exchange, transfer or transformation of energy. In quantum physics, we learn that energy and matter are interchangeable. In metaphysics, we know that thoughts are energy signals that, if strong and persistent enough, can influence the energy patterns and energy states of objects and living organisms at which the thought signals are directed.

Scientists may not agree with this metaphysical statement, but they cannot deny that people endowed with psychic powers can cause objects to move, and spoons to bend and break.

Qigong masters can cause paper to burn, and plants to register surges in electrical activity. They can also make other people move involuntarily, but most scientific investigators attribute this to mental suggestion, rather than the direct influence on the subjects energy system.

The mind-body connection

Let us first rediscover the actions of our thoughts on our selves. We take our physical actions for granted, when actually there are a myriad of actions that need to occur even before we can move a finger.

The mind has to establish an intent (thought-command) that initiates an electrical activity in the appropriate part of the brain (the motor area controlling that finger in this case), which is then transmitted by electrical nerve impulses through the neurons. These impulses are transmitted from one neuron to another along the appropriate chain through synapses (specialised junctions, or contact points between neurons or nerve cells). At the synapses, the signal transmission can be via direct electrical impulse or chemical neurotransmitters.

Finally, the signals reach the neuro-muscular junction where a whole series of chemical-electrical actions occur, which then causes the muscle to contract. This sequence occurs whenever we move any voluntary muscle.

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The healing mind

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