Trending News Today: Chemical Banned by FDA to Remain in Toothpaste

Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.

In the midst of the recent uproar over the skyrocketing price tag of Mylan Pharmaceuticals’ EpiPen, MannKind Corp is in the early stages of developing an inhalable form of epinephrine that aims to take market share from the injectable version, reported the Los Angeles Times. This needle-free option would help bring more competition to the emergency epinephrine market, and may be particularly appealing to children and their parents. Although an inhalable version of epinephrine could be promising, the product still needs to be approved by the FDA. This task will prove challenging for MannKind Corp, who is still suffering the blows from its Afrezza inhaler, which took more than a decade to bring to market, only to record disappointing sales, according to the report.

Although the FDA banned the antibacterial chemical triclosan from soaps last week, the chemical will remain in toothpaste. According to The New York Times, Colgate Total has convinced the FDA that the benefit of triclosan in toothpaste outweighs any potential risks. At this time, Colgate Total is the only toothpaste in the United States that contains triclosan. However, in a statement by Colgate-Palmolive spokesman, Thomas DiPiazza, he said that the toothpaste has undergone a far more rigorous safety review than any other toothpastes, the report noted. Furthermore, the original FDA submission for Colgate Total contained 98 volumes that included more than 100 toxicology studies, and the company provides monitoring and safety updates each year.

New findings show the possibility that humans may have something in common with bears, snakes, and bees, by putting themselves into a kind of hibernation state, although this state hurts us rather than helps us. According to The Washington Post, the recent study focused on the condition myalgic encephalomyelitis, commonly referred to as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), a devastating disease characterized by severe fatigue, and related issues such as memory problems and headaches. After researchers examined more than 600 different metabolites, they found that 80% were lower in those with CFS. In 20 of the metabolic pathways, they found abnormalities that suggest the metabolism in CFS patients is markedly slowed down. Researchers said it appears to be similar to the dauer state in nematode worms faced with overcrowding, starvation, or other toxic environments. Study authors noted that, although they don’t believe CFS is actually hibernation and humans don’t actually hibernate, the metabolic signature is similar to that of animals in hibernation. If the work can be both replicated and validated, researchers believe the work could be a “game changer” for CFS patients. Furthermore, it presents, for the first time, a possible biomarker for diagnosing CFS, and a target for potential treatments.