Study links transfusions, infection in patients having spinal deformity surgery | Bill Gates launches new anti-malaria campaign for Mozambique | Study: Post-FMT antibiotics raise risk of C. diff recurrence
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August 16, 2017
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Study links transfusions, infection in patients having spinal deformity surgery
A study of 56 patients who underwent surgery for major spinal deformities found that 36% of patients who received transfusions reported infections and only those who received transfusions reported wound infections. The findings, published in the journal Clinical Spine Surgery, also indicated that hospital stays for patients who received transfusions were longer compared with those who did not.
Becker's Spine Review (8/15) 
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Science & Health
Bill Gates launches new anti-malaria campaign for Mozambique
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates donated a record-breaking $4.6 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Monday and on Tuesday announced the launch of an anti-malaria campaign. Gates asked his blog followers to read a malaria-related post and then take a related quiz, promising to donate one mosquito bed net per participant to families in Mozambique.
Forbes (8/15),  The Gates Notes (8/15),  GeekWire (8/15) 
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Study: Post-FMT antibiotics raise risk of C. diff recurrence
Patients who took antibiotics within eight weeks of having fecal microbiota transplantation had an almost three times higher risk of Clostridium difficile infection recurrence, according to a study in Clinical Infectious Diseases. "Clinicians should be thoughtful about antibiotic use and optimize antibiotic stewardship practices in the immediate post-FMT period," researchers wrote.
Healio (free registration)/Infectious Disease News (8/12) 
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The Perfect Answer to Emergencies — HemaTrax® Standalone Labeling System
Maintain blood facility operations in case of a cyber attack, downtime or a natural disaster. Just print your ISBT 128 labels using a backup computer. Learn more.
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Emerging Trends
Research group creates advisory board on rare diseases
The Atlantic Research Group in Charlottesville, Va., created a strategic advisory board that will focus on drug development and clinical trial challenges and solutions related to rare diseases. The board will include scientific experts, former executives of biotech companies focused on rare diseases and patient advocates.
OutsourcingPharma (8/14) 
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Industry News & Practice
Drug companies struggle to fill up clinical trials
The rise of new treatment strategies, immunotherapy and personalized medicine has led to a growing list of cancer drugs to test and too few clinical trial patients to test them on, experts said. Also, some drugs are designed to treat uncommon genetic mutations, which could lead to worldwide searches for clinical trial participants that last years, and sometimes drugs are so similar they target the same patient pool.
The New York Times (free-article access for SmartBrief readers) (8/12) 
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Cancer Genetics to pay $12M for vivoPharm acquisition
Cancer Genetics said it will acquire immuno-oncology firm vivoPharm for $12 million. The purchase is expected to boost Cancer Genetics' position as a service provider in the fields of oncology discovery, early-phase clinical trials testing and in vivo and in vitro drug development while bolstering its presence in Australia and Europe.
Reuters (8/14),  Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (8/15) 
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Tender offer for Alere preferred stock extended by Abbott
A cash tender offer for all outstanding shares of Alere's Series B convertible perpetual preferred stock has been extended by Abbott from Aug. 11 to Aug. 31. The extension is an effort to provide more time to complete Abbott's $5.3 billion acquisition of Alere.
Reuters (8/14),  GenomeWeb Daily News (free registration) (8/14) 
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Government & Regulatory
Gilead's entospletinib wins FDA orphan status for GVHD
The FDA has granted orphan drug designation to Gilead Sciences' entospletinib as a treatment for graft-versus-host disease.
Seeking Alpha (free registration) (8/14) 
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FDA to review Portola's BLA for AndexXa
Portola Pharmaceuticals' biologics license application for its factor Xa inhibitor reversal agent AndexXa, or andexanet alfa, was accepted for review by the FDA with an expected action date of Feb. 2, 2018.
Seeking Alpha (free registration) (8/15) 
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Association News
AABB HUB: Hot topics this week
Topics currently creating a buzz in the AABB HUB focus on ABO-matched platelets, wrong blood in tube situations, and gestational age for performing fetal screens. The AABB HUB, the association's online community, provides access to discussions on hot topics in transfusion medicine, regulatory issues, cellular therapies, patient blood management and more. Join the HUB to follow these discussions or submit a comment and post or answer questions in one of the HUB's discussion groups.
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