Most have chronic disease risk
MOST Australians have at least one preventable risk factor for chronic diseases like arthritis, type 2 diabetes, depression, asthma and osteoporosis, according to an Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report. The most common risk factor was not consuming enough vegetables, with about 90% of Australians failing to consume the recommended daily amount. The report also found 80% of Australians usually spent 3 or more hours sitting in their leisure time and 60% were not sufficiently physically active. The research was reported by the Sydney Morning Herald.

GP clinic just for doctors
A GP clinic aimed specifically at doctors is set to open its doors in Adelaide’s CBD. Dr Roger Sexton is behind the clinic, which will employ15 GPs and have opening times that will accommodate doctors’ working hours. A survey 5 years ago showed two in five SA doctors didn’t have a GP, far less than the Australian population average. Self-employed GPs were the least likely to have a doctor. The report was broadcast on the ABC PM program.

Sitting raises mortality risk
AUSTRALIAN researchers have shown that prolonged sitting is a risk factor for all-cause mortality independent of physical activity, in a large study of more than 220 000 people from NSW. The study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, concluded that public health programs should focus on reducing sitting time in addition to increasing physical activity. The research was reported in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Loneliness a looming health risk
THE design of cities must change to combat loneliness because of its links to higher levels of self-assessed ill-health, according to a Grattan Institute report. The institute has compiled examples of planning and urban design which have proved successful in opening up communities to more social interaction. It was reported in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Malaria trial successful
RESEARCH showing successful trials of a new antimalarial drug regimen for infants in Papua New Guinea has been published in PLoS Medicine. The treatment, which involves administering full therapeutic courses of long-acting antimalarial drugs at fixed intervals, regardless of infection status (intermittent preventive treatment (IPTi), was tested in a three-way placebo-controlled randomised trial among 1121 infants. IPTi with sulfadoxine/pyrimethamine plus amodiaquine was found to be effective against both Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax malaria, and cut infections among infants by up to 30%. The research was reported by Channel 9 News.

New breast cancer gene
ANOTHER breast cancer susceptibility gene, dubbed XRCC2, has been identified in a large population-based case-control mutation-screening study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics. The researchers, including scientists from Melbourne, said identification of XRCC2 as a breast cancer susceptibility gene increases the proportion of breast cancers associated with homologous recombination-DNA-repair dysfunction that could benefit from specific targeted treatments. The research was reported by

Posted 2 April 2012

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