Unsaturated fatty acid may reverse aging effect of obesity

Obesity, or a high fat diet, can lead to changes in the immune system similar to those observed with aging. That’s what research published this week in
Experimental Physiology suggests.

The research was carried out by scientists at Liverpool John Moores University in the United Kingdom and the Institute of Food Science, Technology and Nutrition of the Spanish National Research Council (ICTAN-CSIC), the University Complutense of Madrid and the Research Institute of the Hospital 12 de Octubre, in Spain.

These findings are useful as they help scientists understand the impact of obesity on our body’s ability to fight infection. They also found that it was possible to reverse some of these effects by supplementing the diet with unsaturated fatty acids found in vegetable oils, such as olive or fish oils.

Obesity affects one in four adults in the UK and can lead to a number of serious and potentially life-threatening conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, some types of cancer, and stroke.
The researchers fed mice a high-fat diet, causing them to become obese. Signs of oxidative stress and certain properties of immune cells indicated aging of the immune system. These obese mice were then split into groups and received food supplemented either with 2-hydroxyoleic acid or omega-3 fatty acids for eight weeks.
Author Dr. Fatima Perez de Heredia from Liverpool John Moores University said:
‘This is the first study, at least to our knowledge, to suggest the efficacy of 2-hydroxyoleic acid for reversing obesity-associated immune alterations and improving oxidative stress.’

Culled from physoc.org

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Discuss With The Director of Health, SUG Uniuyo about World Cancer Day

February 4: Cancer Day Awareness Campaign

All is now set for World Cancer Day Sensitization Awareness campaign organized by the Office of Health, Students’ Union Government to consolidate effort by the World Health Organization in the creation of awareness and advocacy of regular examination for early detection and possible treatment with the theme “We Can, I Can”.


Comr Gabriel Eyo

In an interview with the Director of Health, Comrade Gabriel Eyo on Wednesday, said “the office of the director of health in collaboration with the three health related faculties; Faculties of Clinical Science, Basic Medical Science, and Pharmacy is doing a cancer awareness campaign”. He outlined events to mark World Cancer day to be “from 10am to 12pm there will representatives from each faculty on Uniuyo FM, discussing cancer and its effect on students. By 5pm, there will be candle light walk for those who have died of cancer as well as those who survived”. The walk which is to take center stage from the school’s environs through Ikpa Road, Ikot-Ekpene Road, and Abak Road, will come to a halt in the school’s annex field where the sky lantern will be lighted in honour of survivors and lost ones.

There are said to be over 200 different types of cancer including anal cancer, bladder cancer, bone cancer, cervical cancer, colon cancer, kidney cancer, pancreatic cancer amongst other. Cancer cells are characterized by their ability to divide rapidly and grow (angiogenesis) enabling their spread throughout the body through the blood or lymphatic system, destroying healthy tissue in the process (invasion). Cancer tissue are known to compete with normal tissues for nutrients, their continual proliferation starve normal tissue which consequently affect organs and system of the body in a long run leading to nutritive death.



Comr. Gabriel Eyo further sited examples of students of the University of Uyo who have died of cancer hence the need for awareness. In his words, “Uniuyo have lost about two students for cancer both of which are Engineering students; one Mr. Idiana Etim who died of skin cancer and in 2013 Ms. Idara died of Leukemia”. The director further buttress the need for cancer awareness “cancer is fast growing in Nigeria, cancer of the prostrate kills faster than HIV or malaria in male and in female, breast cancer is the second largest killer of female in Nigeria.

It’s high time we bring to the knowledge of student this trend in the health sector most especially to give them preventive tips to enable them avoid these cancers


Mr. Abasino Great, a member of Health Care Committee, office of the Director of Health, SUG lent his voice advocating for early detention through regular examination as the panacea of sudden death due to cancer. In his words “we need to be aware of these cancers and the need for regular checkup by visiting health care facilities.

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Inability to cope with stress indicates lack of cortisol

Addison’s Disease and Its Presentation

After a long break due to the Christmas and New Year holiday, group 7 finally had a day to present on Addison’s disease.
Virtually, everyone undergoes stress be it mental or physical and how come they recover soon, that’s because there is a secretion of cortisol by glucocortisol the Zona fasciculate, a layer of the adrenal cortex. So what happens if this secretion stops and how does the body respond to stress?

Addison disease result in the inability or the deficiency of the adrenal cortex to secrete its hormone. (Adrenocortical hormone). The adrenal cortex is sub-divided into three layers namely
*Zona glomerulosa which is responsible for the secretion of mineralocorticoid aldosterone which utilizes cholesterol to synthesis sex hormones including estrogen, progesterone, testosterone amongst others
Zona fasciculate, which secrete glucocortisol, the cortisol. Their secretion is controlled by the hypothalamic pituitary axis via adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)
Zona Reticularis which secretes the adrenal androgens dehydroepinandrosterone (DHEA) and androstenedione
It is important to state that all human steroid hormone including those produced by the adrenal cortex are synthesized from cholesterol. What happens when these hormones are not secreted due to certain factors i.e. adrenalism result of Addison disease.

Causes of Addison Disease
Atrophy or injury if the adrenal cortex autoimmunity against the cortices in about 80% cases resulting in atrophy.
Tuberculosis causes the destruction of the adrenal glands or invasion of the adrenal cortices by cancer
Another case could be adrenal insufficiency due to impaired function of the pituitary gland which fails to produce sufficient ACTH, low ACTH causes decrease production of cortisol; and aldosterone.

Symptoms of Addison’s Diseases
Deficiency in mineralocorticoid results in reduction of renal tubular Na+ reabsorption and consequently loss of Na+, Cl- and water into urine resulting in decrease ECF volume other consequences includes hyponatremia, hyperkalemia and mild acidosis which can result in shock. This is due to the failure of potassium and hydrogen ion exchange for sodium  reabsorption
Glucocorticoid deficiency results in lack of cortisol causing decrease in the mobilization of both proteins and fats from tissues thus depressing many other metabolic functions resulting in weak muscles; deficiency of cortisol also makes the patients highly susceptible to the deteriorating effects of different types of stress.
Melanin pigmentation: there is pigmentation of mucous and skin melanin appears as blotches on the skin. Due to decrease in cortisol secretion, there is no feedback to the hypothalamus thus there is increased secretion of ACTH by the hypothalamus as well as simultaneous increase in the secretion of Melanocytes Stimulating Hormone. Increased ACTH in the blood causes pigmenting effect.

Treatment Replacement
The possible way of correcting Addison disease is hormonal replacement, small quantities of mineralocorticoids and glucocorticoids are administered.

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Buhari kicks off revitalisation of 10,000 primary health care centres

Source: The Guardian Newspaper By Chukwuma Muanya (Lagos), Emeka Anuforo, Terhemba Daka and Nkechi Onyediaka-Ugoeze (Abuja) | 11 January 2017


Credit: The Guardian

As part of efforts to reverse the poor health indices and ensure universal health coverage in the country, President Muhammadu Buhari has kicked off the revitalisation of 10,000 primary healthcare centres (PHCs) nationwide, inaugurating Kuchigoro Clinic, Abuja, as a model.
In his address yesterday in Abuja, Buhari said: “The first phase of this approach is what we are kicking off today (yesterday). It signals the revitalisation of the first 109 PHC facilities across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).”
The President said the provision of quality healthcare service would reverse the poor health indices in the country.



“I am hopeful that our women will no more be dying during childbirth; our children will no more be dying as a result of vaccine preventable diseases or common ailment and access to healthcare will not be limited due to lack of money,” he added.
Buhari noted that Kuchigoro Primary Health Care Centre was renovated to provide services at minimal little or no cost in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH), National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), Federal Capital Development Administration (FCDA), University of Abuja Teaching Hospital and development partners, including General Electric and Sterling Bank.
He said the model would be replicated nationwide with slight modifications, adding: “I want to assure all Nigerians that government will continue to ensure access to quality basic health care services.”
Buhari went on: “My presence here today (yesterday) demonstrates our commitment to put the health of Nigerians as a top priority. Our goal of revitalising the PHCs is to ensure that quality basic healthcare service is delivered to majority of Nigerians irrespective of their location. We shall focus more on the people living in the rural areas and the vulnerable population in our society such as women, under-five children and the elderly in collaboration with national and international partners.”
The President explained that the move was in consonance with the agenda of his All Progressives Congress (APC) party geared at providing succor to the poor and the entire society.



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Air Force Commissions Cancer Screening Centre In Kaduna.

Source: Channels Television

The project, which is an initiative of the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar is part of the efforts to pay significant attention to the general well-being of Nigerian Air Force personnel, their relatives and members of the host communities.


Photo credit: Channels Tv

Speaking during the commissioning of the centre located inside the NAF Hospital in Mando, Kaduna, the Air Force boss, represented by the Air Officer Commanding Training Command, Air Vice Marshal Nurudeen Balogun, said that the aim is to provide personnel of the Nigerian Air Force, their families and members of the host communities the opportunity to carry out routine medical checks in order to detect cancers early enough and commence treatment.

It was built to fill the gap, complement government healthcare delivery programmes and help in reducing the devastating effect of diseases in the country.
Records have shown that cancer, especially cervical cancer, has led to early and untimely death of women in recent time.

This, the Air Force acknowledged, is being occasioned by inadequate screening centre for early detection and treatment.
While expressing worry over the prevalent rate of cancer, especially among women, Air Vice Marshal Nurudeen Balogun urged officers and men of the service and their families to take advantage of the facilities provided in order to remain cancer free.

The Director of Medical Services, Nigerian Air Force Headquarters, Air Vice Marshal Saleh Shinkafi, said that the centre has been equipped with modern facilities for the screening of all types of cancer for early detection and treatment.

He also highlighted the importance of the cancer registry to provide a reliable database for research and planning for public health intervention programmes.
According to statistics, over half a million people globally die from breast cancer annually while over six million people are living with the disease worldwide.

In Nigeria, about 71,600 deaths are recorded annually from cervical cancer with many yet to be detected.

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Lassa fever reemerges in Nigeria

Source: HealthNewsNg

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Panic as Lassa fever reemerges in Nigeria

Lassa fever has reemerged in Nigeria with the official announcement by the Federal Medical Centre (FMC) Abeokuta today (Tuesday) of the death of a nursing staff to Lassa fever, the hospital also announced that two others have been placed observation.

According to the hospital management, the nurse died last week after battling with the sickness, which is also known as Lassa hemorrhagic fever (LHF). The hospital’s Head of Information, Segun Orisajo confirmed the development to
Daily Trust , but assured that the management has put up necessary measures to curtail the situation.

He said the name of the victim is Adebusuyi Bolanle, she died from complications which arose from contacting the fever.
“Yes, I can confirmed that we lost a staff Nurse to the Lassa fever and two others are undergoing observation as I speak with you. The immediate families of the deceased have been contacted and they were here today (Tuesday) for observation.

“The state commissioner for health, Dr. Babatunde Ipaye has been here too to carry out the necessary steps to stop the spread. The management can assure staff and patients that everything is under checks,” Orisajo said.

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Lassa Fever Outbreak: 41 Nigerians killed in 10 states – Minister

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The federal government says Lassa fever has claimed 41 lives from 93 reported cases in 10 states of the country.
The federal government on Friday put the death toll at 40 out of 86 reported cases of Lassa fever outbreak in same 10 states.
The number of the suspected cases also rose from 86 last week to  93.

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The Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole, confirmed this in Abuja on Tuesday at a joint ministerial news conference on the update of the outbreak of the disease.
However, Mr. Adewole said there were no new confirmed cases or deaths in the last 48 hours.

He did not disclose the states from where another life was lost.
“In the last 48 hours, the government raised a four-man expert committee, chaired by Professor Michael Asuzu, to visit Kano, Niger and Bauchi, the three most endemic states.
“The committee will embark on a fact finding mission, assess the current situation, document response experiences, identify gaps and proffer recommendations on how to prevent future occurrences,” Mr. Adewole, a professor, said.
The minister assured the public the task of the committee was not to apportion blame but rather to document lessons learnt for better planning of an affective responsive.
According to Mr. Adewole, part of the long term response is to establish an inter-ministerial committee to deliver a final blow on Lassa fever and other related diseases.
The committee comprises the ministers of Education, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Environment, Information and Culture as well as Health.

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Mr. Adewole advised communities to improve on their hygiene, including food hygiene and food protection practices.
He also urged the public to avoid contact with rodents as well as food contaminated with rat’s secretions and excretions.
“Avoid drying food in the open and along roadsides. It is also important to cover all foods to prevent rodent contamination,” he said.
The minister said affected states had been advised to intensify awareness creation on the signs and symptoms of the disease.
According to him, the affected states are Bauchi, Nasarawa, Niger, Taraba, Kano, Rivers, Edo, Plateau, Gombe and Oyo.
“The public is hereby assured that government and other stakeholders are working tirelessly to address the outbreak and bring it to timely end,” said the minister.
He said the ministry had ordered for the immediate release of adequate quantities of “ribavirin”, the specific antiviral drug for Lassa fever, to the affected states for prompt treatment of cases.
Mr. Adewole said Nigeria had the capability to diagnose Lassa fever, adding that “all the cases reported so far were confirmed by our laboratories”.
The first case of the current outbreak was reported from Bauchi in November 2015.

Source: Nigeria Health Watch

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Non-communicable Diseases Take over Africa

Non-Communicable Disease arm of World Health Organization report that over 1.7 million people die in Africa due to preventable and manageable diseases (NCD), the highest prevalence in the world.

Non-Communicable Disease also known as chronic diseases are slow progressive and long duration diseases not passed from person to person, they include cardiovascular diseases (like heart attack and stroke), cancers, chronic respiratory diseases (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma) and Diabetes. Children, adults and the elderly are vulnerable to the risk factors (unhealthy diets, physical inactivity, exposure to tobacco smoke or effects of the harmful use of alcohol) contributing to NCD chiefly low and middle income earners.

According to report, all age group and all regions are affected by NCDs but about 82% occurred in low and middle income countries. Forces including ageing, rapid unplanned urbanization and the globalization of unhealthy lifestyles help facilitate the advance of these diseases leading to death e.g. globalization of unhealthy lifestyles like unhealthy diets might show up in individuals as raised blood pressure, increased blood glucose, elevated blood lipids and obesity referred to as ‘intermediate risk factors’ leading to cardiovascular diseases, a NCDs.

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Risk factors-modifiable behavioural risk factors
Behaviours such as tobacco use, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet and the harmful use of alcohol are the risk factors of NCDs. Below are statistics as provided on WHO website.
*Tobacco accounts for around 6 million death every year (including from the effects if exposure to second hand smoke) and is projected to increase to 8 million by 2030
*About 3.2 million deaths annually can be attributed to insufficient physical activity.
*More than half of the 3.3 million annual deaths from harmful drinking are from NCDs
*In 3020, 1.7 million annual deaths from cardiovascular cases have been attributed to excess salt/sodium intake.

The above risk factors leads to metabolic/physiological changes hiking the risk of NCDs and eventually death. These metabolic changes includes raised blood pressure, overweight/obesity, hyperglycaemia (high blood glucose levels) and hyperlipidaemia (high levels of fat in the blood)

Prevention and control of NCDs
*A comprehensive approach towards all sectors including health, finance, foreign affairs, education, agriculture, planning and others to work together to reduce the risks associated with NCDs and also the promotion in the interventions to both prevent and control them.
*Lessening the risk factors associated with these diseases is an important way to reduce NCDs
*High impact essential NCD interventions delivered through a primary health centre approach to strengthen early detection and timely treatment. Creation of healthy public policies that promote NCD prevention and control and reorienting health systems to address the needs of people with such disease.

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Source: WHO report on NCDs

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The Physiology of Stress

“Group 6 it’s your turn” as Dr. Davies took his seat at the beginning of his lectures. Hospital practice-course title, has been that platform for all students offering it to display their skills in research and lecture delivery. “We’ll be discussing cortisol and it effect on stress” the group leader said by way of introduction. Sit back, take your time as I bring you bit by bit information on the physiology of stress, causes and management.

Dr. Davies Kofrey defined stress as the condition capable of unbalancing homeostasis in the body. Stress is an inevitable part of life ranging from physical stress which includes change in weather conditions, increase in body temperature; emotional stress: anger, fear; to bacteria invasion in the body causing infection and sickness.
Stress can be both beneficial-physiological or destructive. A good example physiological stress is muscular exercise with its attendant imbalance in the body for example mild hypoxia with might result in the production of ketone in the body. And of course, worry and anxiety could be classified as negative stress.

Stress of any kind whether it be physical or neurologic can cause an immediate and marked increase in ACTH secretion by the anterior pituitary followed within minutes by adrenocorticotropic secretion of cortisol. Cortisol is an emergency-stress response hormone secreted at any incidence of stress (listed below). It mobilizes labile proteins and make amino acids available to needy cells in the synthesize of essential substance need for life. Various stressor of the body includes: Infections, intense mild/heat, surgery, almost any debilitating disease including schizophrenia, rheumatoid arthritis and poliomyelitis amongst others.

Short and Long Term Effects of Stress
During periods of increased stress, the immune cells which produces antibodies are bathed (immersed) in molecules which essentially tell them to stop fighting. These molecules which are cortisol molecules suppresses the immune system and inflammatory pathways rendering the body more susceptible to disease (Onyinyechi, 2016). Other significant effects of stress include prolonged healing time as a result of increased blood clotting time, reduction in ability to cope with vaccinations and heightened vulnerability to viral infection.
Onn a long time scale, effects of stress are seen in impaired cognition-trouble in remembering and learning; decreased thyroid function amongst others.

Managing stress: Simple both effective way of combating stress includes Exercise, relaxation, deep breathing, consulting a specialist say a psychologist, etc.

Remember, stress is a normal part of life but at times it may be too much and feels out of control.

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Last week Saturday (10th December, 2016) was a day of state-wide mourning as a church building gave way during service killing over 200 worshippers as mentioned by sources. What would have been a political unrest was aviated by a said P.A who took the place of death of the number one person in the state-the Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel.

They had gathered like every other service day singing and praising God from a joyful heart before the unexpected happened. According to a survivor of the incident, as reported by Punch Newspaper Ng, stated that the building collapsed just immediately after a lead singer’s performance at the ordination of the presiding pastor of Reigner Bible Church, Bishop Elect Akan Weeks.

My major concern for writing is the emergency response by the medical team and other relevant agencies in the state. Report have it that the Governor ordered cranes to move into the site to remove the collapsed building as police took charge of the scene endeavoring the safety and rescue of injured worshippers.

A journalist who spoke on radio this morning stated that the emergency response from medical team was quite poor calling it a wake-up call on the part of the government and individuals for preparedness and proper response. He further, spoke on the donation of blood (for injured persons) as not forth-coming due to poor awareness/publicity.

Akwa-Ibom state has a population of 5 million has over 50 primary health clinics is yet to attain the height of promptness in emergency situation (in my opinion). I join hundreds of health workers across the state to ask the government for more equipment, training and capacity development of health personnel. Furthermore, I call on individuals to be ready, when beckon upon for, blood donation leaving behind wrong perception to doing what’s right and needful.

I must at this point appreciate the state ministry of Health and the State government of Akwa-Ibom on their effort in improving the health status of her people especially at the Hands-Up for HIV campaign.

Images courtesy Punch Newspaper Ng

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