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Cystic fibrosis is a life threatening, inherited disease of the exocrine glands. The condition primarily affects the digestive and respiratory systems which become clogged with a thick, sticky mucus.

Cystic fibrosis is caused by a mutation in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene which results in an excess of salt and water passing into cells, causing a thick, sticky mucus to build up in bodily passageways.

In the airways, this mucus causes a persistent cough, wheezing, breathlessness, and repeated lung infections. In the digestive tract, the tubes that carry digestive enzymes from the pancreas into the small intestine become blocked, preventing the proper absorption of food nutrients. This can lead to poor weight gain, intestinal blockage (particularly in newborns), and foul-smelling, greasy stools.

There is no cure for cystic fibrosis, so treatment aims to ease symptoms and make the condition easier to live with. Bronchodilators may be used to help expand the airways, antibiotics to treat chest infections and physiotherapy can help expel mucus from the lungs.
The condition is most common in white people of northern European descent and is estimated to occurs in 1 in every 2,500 babies born in the UK, where babies are screened at birth for cystic fibrosis as part of the National Health Service newborn screening programme.
Adding DNA sequencing to newborn screenings may increase early diagnosis of cystic fibrosis

Adding DNA sequencing to newborn screenings may increase early diagnosis of cystic fibrosis

A study by researchers at Children's Hospital Los Angeles, Brigham and Women's Hospital and the California Department of Public Health suggests that all babies with a known mutation for cystic fibrosis (CF) and second mutation called the 5T allele should receive additional screening in order to better predict the risk of developing CF later in life. [More]
BET inhibitor treatment decreases lung inflammation in mice

BET inhibitor treatment decreases lung inflammation in mice

Patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) suffer from chronic respiratory infections, primarily caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which lead to airway inflammation and damage. [More]
Researchers discover how Zika virus travels from pregnant mother to fetus

Researchers discover how Zika virus travels from pregnant mother to fetus

Zika virus can infect numerous cell types in the human placenta and amniotic sac, according to researchers at UC San Francisco and UC Berkeley who show in a new paper how the virus travels from a pregnant woman to her fetus. They also identify a drug that may be able to block it. [More]
New report reveals prescription medication costs may increase up to 13% in 2016

New report reveals prescription medication costs may increase up to 13% in 2016

Prescription medication costs are expected to rise at least 11 percent, and possibly up to 13 percent, in 2016, according to a new report on national trends and projections in prescription drug expenditures. [More]
Scientists uncover structure of cold virus linked to severe asthma, respiratory infections in children

Scientists uncover structure of cold virus linked to severe asthma, respiratory infections in children

The atomic structure of an elusive cold virus linked to severe asthma and respiratory infections in children has been solved by a team of researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Purdue University. [More]
Sex-related difference could have impact on treatment of metabolic diseases

Sex-related difference could have impact on treatment of metabolic diseases

In health research, most preliminary studies in animals only examine effects of drug treatment in one sex, assuming that males and females will have few differences in how a drug works. [More]
Tiny viruses speed-up evolution of bacteria causing infections in cystic fibrosis patients

Tiny viruses speed-up evolution of bacteria causing infections in cystic fibrosis patients

SCIENTISTS in the UK have found new evidence that tiny viruses called bacteriophages turbo-charge the evolution of bacteria that cause lung infections in Cystic Fibrosis patients. [More]
Mitochondrial DNA levels may represent accurate, predictive measure of embryo viability in IVF

Mitochondrial DNA levels may represent accurate, predictive measure of embryo viability in IVF

Despite the claims and counter-claims for new embryo assessment techniques introduced over the past two decades, the search for the holy grail of assisted reproduction - the key to the embryo destined to implant - continues. [More]
Inhalable ibuprofen holds potential to treat cystic fibrosis

Inhalable ibuprofen holds potential to treat cystic fibrosis

Ibuprofen: You can buy it at any drug store, and it will help with that stabbing headache or sprained ankle. One of the ways it does so is by reducing inflammation, and it is this property that may also help patients with cystic fibrosis. [More]
Advances in inhaled drug delivery: an interview with Dr Robert Clarke

Advances in inhaled drug delivery: an interview with Dr Robert Clarke

Delivering drugs to the lungs via inhalation has a number of potential advantages over traditional routes of administration like pills or injections. For treating pulmonary diseases, the obvious logic we are applying is topical delivery to the airways via inhalation. [More]
New IDSA guidelines focus on diagnosis, treatment of deadly aspergillosis

New IDSA guidelines focus on diagnosis, treatment of deadly aspergillosis

New therapies are improving care, but early diagnosis remains critical in the effective treatment of invasive, a potentially deadly fungal infection, according to new guidelines released by the Infectious Diseases Society of America and published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. [More]
Neurofibromatosis causes benign tumor formation in normal nervous tissue

Neurofibromatosis causes benign tumor formation in normal nervous tissue

Although neurofibromatosis (NF) is not commonly discussed, it affects more than 2 million people worldwide. [More]
New study sheds light on impact of unknown genetic mutations in cystic fibrosis patients

New study sheds light on impact of unknown genetic mutations in cystic fibrosis patients

When it comes to cystic fibrosis (CF), more than 2,000 different genetic mutations have been reported. However, only 200 of them have been categorized - leaving a genetic soup of 1,800 others for scientists and genetic counselors to figure out. [More]
Phage therapy in conjunction with antibiotics could help treat dangerous bacterial infection

Phage therapy in conjunction with antibiotics could help treat dangerous bacterial infection

Yale researchers were fishing for a new weapon against antibiotic resistance and found one floating in a Connecticut pond, they report May 26, 2016 in the journal Scientific Reports. [More]
Researchers partially restore lost function of isolated cystic fibrosis lung cells

Researchers partially restore lost function of isolated cystic fibrosis lung cells

In experiments with isolated cystic fibrosis lung cells, University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers and colleagues from two other institutions have partially restored the lost function of those cells. [More]
New molecule has potential to prolong life of cystic fibrosis patients

New molecule has potential to prolong life of cystic fibrosis patients

Scientists at Queen's University Belfast have discovered a new molecule which has the potential to prolong the life of individuals with cystic fibrosis (CF). [More]
Study emphasizes benefits of newborn screening for CF patients

Study emphasizes benefits of newborn screening for CF patients

A new study led by a team from the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre and Cystic Fibrosis Canada reinforces the benefits of newborn screening for cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. [More]
Researchers develop SpiroCall that can accurately measure lung function over simple phone call

Researchers develop SpiroCall that can accurately measure lung function over simple phone call

Most people in the developing world who have asthma, cystic fibrosis or other chronic lung diseases have no way to measure how well their lungs are functioning outside of a clinic or doctor visit. [More]
New clinical data highlights potential of AB-PA01 to treat P. aeruginosa infections in CF patients

New clinical data highlights potential of AB-PA01 to treat P. aeruginosa infections in CF patients

AmpliPhi Biosciences Corporation, a global leader in the development of bacteriophage-based antibacterial therapies to treat drug-resistant infections, presented data at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases summarizing both the in vitro and in vivo activity of its proprietary, investigational phage mix AB-PA01. [More]

Scientists develop wearable sweat sensors for medical analysis of sweat

Plants and trees soak up water in the soil by letting it vaporize through pores in the leaves. Scientists at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) have now taken this principle to develop a sweat sensor through which the sweat itself flows at a steady rate and is analyzed. [More]
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