Hits & Misses – 2008/12/04

Research We Like. "Scientists [are] trying to understand how resveratrol, a minor ingredient of red wine, improves the health and lifespan of laboratory mice." [link] Summary of study is here.

Designer Medicine: It's Now Being Used in Preventive Care. Prevention is tailored "to each individual based on his or her unique characteristics." [link]

Would You Sell Your Right to Privacy? 100 M.I.T. students did in return for a free smartphone. [link]

Just How Powerful Are the Drug Companies? If you put this in a novel, no one would believe it:

  • "Although there was no real evidence the newer pills were better, diuretics fell to 27 percent of hypertension prescriptions in 1992, from 56 percent in 1982. Use of the more expensive pills added an estimated $3.1 billion to the nation's medical bill over that period."
  • Then, a 2007 study found that diuretics, which "cost only pennies a day, worked better than newer drugs that were up to 20 times as expensive."
  • In the year after the study, "The percentage of hypertension patients receiving a diuretic rose to around 40 percent…but has since stayed at that plateau."

So how did the drug companies manage that? Read on. [link]

Geography Matters. At least for women. Fittest city: Santa Ana, Ca. Highest average BMI: Gary, In. [link]


"She's a Woman"

Comments (4)

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  1. Vicki says:

    On privacy, I would think that MIT students don’t have very much to hide.

  2. Tom says:

    I also like the red wine research. I can tell that you too are a lover of the grape.

  3. Joe S. says:

    On the drug companies, thanks for the post. The New York Times story reads like something out of a John Grisham novel.

  4. Larry C. says:

    The interesting thing about the post on preventive medicine is that it signals the end of the idea that preventive medicine is cheap. It may also end once and for all the notion that preventive medicnie is cost effective.