Reuters Health News Summary

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Following is a summary of current health news briefs.

Fruit fly trial unlocks clues for 'polypill' to beat aging

Scientists who gave fruit flies a triple drug combination treatment and found that it extended their lives by almost 50% say their work offers clues on how to fight aging in people. The researchers said their aim is not to find the secret of eternal life, but to figure out the mechanism of the aging process to find ways to help people stay healthy for longer.

Occupational pesticide exposure may raise heart risk

On-the-job exposure to high levels of pesticides might raise the risk of developing heart disease or having a stroke, according to a long-term study in Hawaii. Farm and agricultural workers need to wear personal protective equipment and, even after they retire should continue to have their health monitored for cardiovascular complications, the authors conclude in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

FDA issues warning letters to websites selling illegal opioids

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) jointly issued warning letters to four online networks for illegally marketing unapproved and misbranded versions of opioid medicines, the agencies said. The networks which were issued the warning letters on Monday are Divyata, Euphoria Healthcare Pvt Ltd, JCM Dropship and Meds4U, which operate a total of 10 websites.

Books may foster bonding better than tablets when parents read to toddlers

Toddlers appear to be much more engaged with their parents when stories are read to them from books rather than digital tablets, a new study finds. Researchers found that instead of having the enjoyable back and forth that occurred when stories were read from a book, toddlers and parents were likely to wrestle for control of a tablet, according to the study published in JAMA Pediatrics.

AstraZeneca strengthens Lynparza push with prostate cancer data

AstraZeneca presented results on Monday for a trial of its Lynparza drug against prostate cancer, which it hopes could lead to wider regulatory approval for the treatment for use against more forms of the disease. The British drugmaker, together with development partner Merck & Co, said Lynparza was shown to delay disease progression in an aggressive and difficult-to-treat type of prostate cancer by a median 3.8 months in the group most sensitive to the treatment.

Drugmakers look to use Purdue Pharma's bankruptcy to settle U.S. opioid suits: WSJ

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Endo International Plc, Johnson & Johnson and other drugmakers that face litigation over the opioid crisis are exploring a way to settle the cases by participating in Purdue Pharma LP's bankruptcy, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing internal documents and a person familiar with the matter. Five drugmakers battling the cases - Endo, J&J, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, Allergan Plc and Mallinckrodt Plc - are looking to enact a global settlement of the litigation that would be implemented through Purdue's Chapter 11 case, the WSJ reported, citing a person familiar with the matter.

Factbox: Vaping-related illness causes 12 U.S. deaths - CDC

U.S. health officials are investigating a mysterious vaping-related respiratory illness that has so far caused 12 deaths and sickened 805 people. In its latest recommendation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) urged people to not use e-cigarettes with marijuana ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) as latest data suggests that the high-inducing component may play a role in causing the illness.

U.S. recorded 2 new cases of measles last week

The United States recorded two new measles cases last week, taking the total cases for the year to 1,243 in the worst outbreak since 1992, federal health officials said on Monday. As of Sept. 26, the highly contagious and sometimes deadly disease has been reported in 31 states, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Steak is back on the menu, if a new review of risks of red meat is to be believed

Cutting back on red and processed meat brings few if any health benefits, according to a review of studies involving millions of people, a finding that contradicts dietary advice of leading international agencies and raised immediate objections from many health experts. Most people can continue to eat red and processed meat at current average intake, typically three or four times a week for adults in North America and Europe, said a study's authors, who also made new recommendations based on the analysis.

Vape shop owners sue Massachusetts over product sale ban

Several vape shop owners are suing the state of Massachusetts for implementing a four-month ban on sales of all vaping products and asked the court to deem it "unconstitutional." Massachusetts imposed a ban on sales of all e-cigarettes and supplies, both those used for tobacco and marijuana, which is legal in the state, citing a national public health emergency.

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