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Why breathing during exercise harder for women than men

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Toronto, April 28 (IANS) While both sexes have the capacity for phenomenal athletic achievements, researchers have found that breathing during difficult exercise may be harder for women as compared to men.

The study suggests one possible way sex could affect exercise dynamics and potentially also contribute to differences in how men and women experience airway disorders such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

“The amount of work the respiratory muscles have to do to breathe a given volume is greater in women. It is thought that this is due to women having smaller airways than men, which causes the airflow resistance to be higher,” said study researcher Paolo Dominelli from the University of Waterloo in Canada.

For the findings published in the FASEB Journal, the research team recruited six men and five women to perform two maximal exercise tests, in which participants gradually increased their level of exertion on a stationary cycle until they were exercising as hard as they could.

Participants breathed through a mouthpiece attached to a large bag. During one session, the bag was filled with normal room air.

During the other, the bag was filled with a mixture of oxygen and helium. Each bag contained the same amount of oxygen, and participants were not told which mixture they were breathing on which day.

A small tube was inserted into the participants’ nose and throat during the tests to monitor the pressure inside the oesophagus.

This procedure allows researchers to measure the amount of work required to breathe. When the bag contained the helium mixture, the results showed no differences in the work of breathing between men and women.

When it contained room air, breathing required significantly more work for women than men, the researchers said.

The researchers cautioned that the differences observed in the study relate to size and sex and that there is great variability in airway size among different individuals.

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Senator says Trump notifies Congress to withdraw US from WHO

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Donald Trump

Washington, July 8 : US President Donald Trump has formally notified Congress that the United States has officially moved to withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO), Democratic Senator Bob Menendez said.

“Congress received notification that POTUS officially withdrew the US from the @WHO in the midst of a pandemic,” Menendez, ranking member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, tweeted on Tuesday, Xinhua reported.

“To call Trump’s response to COVID chaotic & incoherent doesn”t do it justice. This won”t protect American lives or interests – it leaves Americans sick & America alone,” he added.

Citing a senior administration official, The Hill reported the same day that the United States had submitted its withdrawal notification to the United Nations secretary-general.

Trump and his administration repeatedly assailed the WHO for months and threatened to cut ties with the organization. Experts and Democrats criticized that the Trump administration was trying to shift blames of its mishandling of Covid-19 response and would be counterproductive to addressing the public health crisis.

Trump said in late May that his country is “terminating” its relationship with the WHO. In a letter to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus earlier that month, Trump threatened to permanently cut off the nation”s funding to the WHO and “reconsider our membership” if the international body does not commit to what he called “substantive improvements within the next 30 days.”

Trump announced in mid-April that his administration would halt US funding to the WHO.

The United States has reported more than 2.96 million Covid-19 cases with over 130,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. Both figures are far higher than those in any other country or region.

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Health Ministry steps in to curb black marketing of Covid drug

The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation has given approval for the manufacturing and marketing of Remdesivir to Cipla, Hetro and Mylan.

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remdesivir antiviral drug

New Delhi, July 7 : The Union Health Ministry has asked all the states to strengthen their vigil so that black marketing of Covid-19 drug Remdesivir is prevented.

The Directorate General of Health Services under the Health Ministry has written to the Drug Controllers of the states to prevent sale of Remdesivir above MRP.

The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation has given approval for the manufacturing and marketing of Remdesivir to Cipla, Hetro and Mylan.

The DGHS said that it has received a letter from LocalCircles routed through the Health Ministry, raising concerns over black marketing and overpricing of Remdesivir by certain unscrupulous persons.

“In view of the above, you are requested to instruct your enforcement officials to keep strict vigil on the matter to prevent black marketing and sale of Remdesivir injection above the MRP,” the DGHS said in the letter to the states.

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NIMS begins subject registration for Covid 19 Vaccine clinical trial

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Covid 19 Vaccine

Hyderabad, July 7 : The subject enrolment for Phase-I clinical trial of India’s first indigenous vaccine for COVID-19 began at Nizam’s Institute of Medical Science (NIMS) here on Tuesday.

On the direction of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), authorities at NIMS began the process to register 30-60 subjects for the trial.

Blood and swab samples of the subjects will be collected and if found fit they will be administered the first dose of the vaccine after a week.

NIMS Director Dr K. Manohar told reporters that healthy subjects will be screened and their blood and swab samples sent to ICMR-designated lab in New Delhi. After receiving the test reports, the Department of Medicine will analyse the same and issue the fitness certificates to the subjects.

The subjects would be administered two doses of the vaccine. There will be two vaccine dosage of three micrograms and six micrograms, and a placebo.

Each subject would be given the second dose of the same vaccine after 14 days.

For two days after administering the vaccine, the subjects would be monitored for two days in the ICCU at NIMS by a team of doctors, after which they would be sent home and monitored through videoconference or phone.

The phase-I clinical trial would go on for 28 days, after which the ICMR and the Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) would accord permission for Phase-II trial with more subjects.

Phase-1 would have around 375 subjects across the country and Phase-II 875.

NIMS is one of the hospitals selected by the ICMR to undertake clinical trials of Covaxin, which it is developing in partnership with Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL).

Meanwhile, the Ethics Committee at King George Hospital (KGH) in Visakhapatnam will hold a crucial meeting on Tuesday to finalise the preparations for the clinical trials. KGH is also one of the hospitals selected by ICMR for the trials.

In a letter to the heads of the selected institutions last week, ICMR Director General Balram Bhargava asked them to fast-track all approvals related to initiation of the clinical trials and ensure that the subject enrollment is initiated no later than July 7.

“It is envisaged to launch the vaccine for public health use latest by August 15, 2020 after completion of all clinical trials. BBIL is working expeditiously to meet the target; however, the final outcome will depend on the cooperation of all clinical trial sites involved in this project,” reads the letter dated July 2.

He noted that this is the first indigenous vaccine being developed by India and is one of the top priority projects that is being monitored at the topmost level of the government.

“The vaccine is being derived from a strain of SARS-CoV-2 isolated by ICMR-National Institute of Virology, Pune. ICMR and BBIL are jointly working for the preclinical as well as clinical development of this vaccine,” he wrote.

While experts raised doubts on the August 15 target, the ICMR defended it, saying its process is in accordance with the globally accepted norms to fast-track vaccine development for diseases of pandemic potential.

The research body said the Director’s letter was intended to cut red tape, without bypassing any necessary process, and speed up recruitment of participants for human trials so that these phases can be completed at the earliest.

BBIL refused to comment on ICMR’s August 15 deadline.

The company had announced on June 29 that it had successfully developed Covaxin, India’s first vaccine candidate for COVID-19, in collaboration with the ICMR and NIV.

The SARS-CoV-2 strain was isolated in NIV, Pune and transferred to Bharat Biotech. The indigenous, inactivated vaccine has been developed and manufactured in Bharat Biotech’s BSL-3(Bio-Safety Level 3) High Containment Facility located in Genome Valley, Hyderabad, the company said.

The Drug Controller General of India – Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare granted permission to initiate Phase I and II human clinical trials after the company submitted results generated from preclinical studies, demonstrating safety and immune response.

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