The Handoff is a weekly roundup of endocrinology and general medicine news covering various developments in subspecialties, as well as pharmaceutical industry, association, and society news.
–The latest startling maternal mortality fact is a good one: maternal mortality rates in California are one-third lower than the US average, thanks in part to the efforts of Stanford’s California Maternal Quality Care Collaborative (CMQCC).
–The FDA has approved Insulin Algorithms’ decision support software as a Class II medical device. The software will allow clinicians to regularly monitor patients’ blood sugar to optimize insulin regimens.
–A Cook County judge has granted an injunction on the controversial penny-per-ounce soda tax opposed by the Illinois Retail Merchants Association.
–Get a whiff of this: a new study out of UC Berkeley found that obese mice who lost their sense of smell also lost weight. Findings suggest that smell plays an important role in how our bodies deal with calories, opening a new avenue for olfactory-based metabolic studies.
–The North American Menopause Society (NAMS) has released a new Hormone Therapy Position Statement, updating the previous 2012 statement. The update evaluated recently published literature and identified future research needs.
–Three physicians — all former US Surgeons General — have released a statement calling for the end of involuntary medical procedures on intersex infants and children. The letter follows study results, published in the International Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology, suggesting that intersex children do not have higher rates of medical or psychological conditions.
–Treatment with the anti-inflammatory asthma drug amlexanox (Aphthasol, Uluru Inc.) may result in clinically significant drops in blood glucose in patients with type 2 diabetes. A recent proof-of-concept trial examined amlexanox in 6 patients, followed by a controlled trial of 42 patients with obesity and type 2 diabetes.
–A Korean study published in PLoS One has found that patients with systemic lupus erythematosus are at an elevated risk of developing thyroid disease.