Opioid antidotes and the huge profits they generate

In 2016, 36 states joined a lawsuit against Reckitt Benckiser Group that alleged that the company had profited from the opioid crisis and siphoned money from Medicaid. The drug company allegedly worked to preserve its monopolistic hold on profits drawn from its control of addiction treatment drug Suboxone. The 2016 lawsuit in Philadelphia has received …

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Prescription drugs in the US (a bit long, but you must read the conclusion)

Congress is under pressure to reduce drug prices, but the obstacles are legion. Current federal regulations protect drug makers from competition and restrict the government’s ability to negotiate bulk prices for large purchases from manufacturers. The nation’s drug distribution system is complex, opaque, short on data, and little understood by consumers. And the huge money …

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Is do-it-yourself gene editing wise and ethical?

CRISPR, the cheap and easy technique for making precise changes to DNA, has researchers around the world racing to trial its use in treating a host of human diseases. But this race is not confined to the lab. Last month, Josiah Zayner, a biochemist who once worked for NASA, became the first person to edit …

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One reason American healthcare is so expensive

Five months after Hurricane Maria barrelled through Puerto Rico, much of the island remains “largely unliveable”, says emergency medicine physician Jeremy Samuel Faust. One knock-on effect of this is that America is drastically short of a staple item of hospital equipment: intravenous fluids for use in drips. The shutdown of several Puerto Rican factories that …

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Is there any point in old men? (Don’t all shout at once!)

“In “How Men Age” biological anthropologist Richard Bribiescas covers some interesting uncharted territory. This is not a mere description of getting older. Instead, by considering male ageing in the light of natural selection, it aims to answer why men’s lifespans are shorter than women’s, why baldness, prostate disease and erectile dysfunction are so prevalent, and …

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