Tranzyme Pharma is refocusing efforts on TZP-102, it’s diabetic gastroparesis drug treatment, after the failure of it’s flagship drug Ulimorelin.

Tranzyme Pharma & the FDA were not happy with the results of the Phase III trial results for Ulimorelin. Ulimorelin is similar to Tranzyme’s other drug TZP-102, in that it uses a ghrelin receptor agonist to stimulate motility in the gut. The drug was meant to treat people with delayed gastrointenstinal recovery / post operative ileus which is most often associated with gastrointestinal or gynecological surgery. Continue reading “Tranzyme Still Optimistic About Gastroparesis Drug Despite Stumbling Blocks” »

Jon Reiner’s recently released book about his battles with Crohn’s Disease discusses the impacts of disease on a person as well as society’s relationship with food.

The Man Who Couldn't Eat Book

The Man Who Couldn't Eat

Food is not just sustenance. It is memories, a lobster roll on the beach in Maine; heritage, hot pastrami club with a half-sour pickle; guilty pleasures, a chocolate rum-soaked Bundt cake; identity, vegetarian or carnivore. Food is the sensuality of a ripe strawberry or a pork chop sizzling on the grill. But what if the very thing that keeps you alive, that bonds us together and marks occasions in our lives, became a toxic substance, an inflammatory invader? In this beautifully written memoir, both gut-wrenching and inspiring, award-winning writer Jon Reiner explores our complex and often contradictory relationship with food as he tells the story of his agonizing battle with Crohn’s disease—and the extraordinary places his hunger and obsession with food took him. Continue reading ““The Man Who Couldn’t Eat” Chronicles Relationship With Food & Disease” »

Tranzyme’s TZP-102 is a Ghrelin receptor agonist designed for treatment of Gastroparesis in diabetic patients. Phase IIb trials are currently underway to further test it’s efficacy.

Ghrelin is a hormone that is generated within the walls of the stomach. It’s mainly responsible for the feeling of hunger along with helping to gear up the digestive system for food intake. Leptin is another digestive hormone that is almost the opposite of  Ghrelin in that it promotes feelings of satiety & lowers appetite. Those with Gastroparesis often have problems with loss of appetite & early feelings of fullness along with nausea & vomiting. While it’s known that usually a loss of digestive motility is the reason for these symptoms, it is not often known where the loss of motility came from. In some cases motility is not an issue, yet symptoms remain.  It is possible that those suffering from Gastroparesis may be dealing with an underproduction of Ghrelin or an overproduction of Leptin. It is also possible that these hormone levels are fine but some other issue exists like nerve or muscle damage. Regardless of the cause, increasing production of Ghrelin may be beneficial to those dealing with Gastroparesis as it may allow the digestive system to regain some lost motility while improving appetite & reducing feelings of fullness. Continue reading “Tranzyme’s TZP-102 Gastroparesis Treatment Starts Phase IIb Trials” »

The Listeria monocytogenes strain found on cantaloupes is being blamed for the death of at least 18 people as well as sickening at least 100.

The tainted cantaloupes were sold by Jensen Farms located in Colorado & distributed all over the country. The Center for Disease Control has reported Listeria related illness in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Montana, North Dakota, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin & Wyoming. Jensen Farms recalled the cantaloupes in mid-September.

At the same time this was happening, listeria also popped up on romaine lettuce that was being sold by True Leaf Farms of Salinas, California. Currently there have been no reports of illness from this lettuce as not much of it was distributed & what did get distributed was recalled quickly. Continue reading “Listeria Outbreak Still Having Repercussions” »

SmartPill device measures patient’s digestive system vitals with less hassle & invasiveness compared to typical diagnostic procedures like endoscopy or gastric emptying studies.

Measuring 26 mm x 13 mm, about the size of a multi-vitamin, the SmartPill device should be easy enough for most patients to swallow. Once swallowed the device gets to work measuring statistics about the patients digestive system. The information collected is useful for measuring motility within the stomach, small bowel & colon along with temperature & pressure throughout the entire gut. A data monitoring device is worn by the patient which the SmartPill communicates with wirelessly. Data is collected for 4 – 5 days & then the patient returns to the doctors office to have the data downloaded & analyzed. Only the data monitoring device is recovered as the SmartPill itself is a single use device & passes through the digestive system along with other waste products. Continue reading “SmartPill Aids Diagnosis of Gastroparesis & Irritable Bowel Syndrome” »

Health Canada is strengthening the required side effect warnings on prescriptions of Reglan so that they include more information regarding the likelihood of someone developing debilitating Tardive dyskinesia.

Reglan is the brand name of the drug Metoclopramide which has been used for decades to as an anti-emetic & prokinetic drug. Health Canada is the department which sets health policy within Canada. Health Canada has come out with stronger warnings regarding the major side effect of Tardive dyskinesia. The new warnings will now be required for all prescriptions of Reglan. Continue reading “Reglan Tardive Dyskinesia Side Effect Warnings Boosted In Canada” »

About a month ago I contacted my local congressman, David Wu, asking for his support on “H.R. 2239 – Functional GI and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011“. He recently sent a response back outlining his views on the pending legislation.

Just to recap here is the original letter I sent to David Wu via his website.

I would just like to bring your attention to the house bill HR 2239 “Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011″.

I have personally suffered from Irritable Bowel Syndrome for 14 years and went through an acute case of Gastroparesis for 3 months. Both of these diseases have had a profound & lasting affect on my life. Motility related digestive illnesses greatly affect a person’s quality of life & they greatly impact a person’s social, educational & career endeavors. With almost 20% of Americans facing some form of digestive motility disorder, it’s a shame that there isn’t more funding given to researching these diseases.

I ask that you please become a cosponsor of H.R. 2239 by contacting Amy Bos in the office of Congressman James Sensenbrenner, Jr.

Thank you,
Gabriel Hedges Continue reading “David Wu Responds To My H.R. 2239 Inquiry” »

HR 2239 “Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011″ could increase funding for disease like Gastroparesis or Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Visit Functional GI and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011 on Facebook.

Everyone out there who is dealing with a functional gastrointestinal and motility disorder(FGIMD) needs to listen up & get the word out to their friends, family & especially their local US district representative about H.R. 2239 the “Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011“. The goal of the bill is to increase funding for functional & motility related gastrointestinal diseases. Continue reading “Please Support HR 2239 “Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011″” »

A recent study examined the effects the growth hormone agonist, ghrelin, had on Guinea Pig antral and pyloric smooth muscle tissue. Ghrelin is partially responsible for stimulating hunger along with increasing motility & digestive juices. Continue reading “Guinea Pigs, Rats & Ghrelin Helping With Gastroparesis” »

A recent small scale study shows that people who have long term Functional Dyspepsia are more likely to have sleep disturbances or anxiety.

Functional Dyspepsia is essentially chronic indigestion. It usually involves bloating, belching, nausea & heartburn. Often Functional Dyspepsia is not an often diagnosis. Many doctors seem to prefer to link these symptoms to acid reflux. Functional Dyspepsia may have links to stomach motility issues & may actually be a milder form of Gastroparesis. This hasn’t been confirmed because often motility tests are not done on patients complaining of these symptoms. The reason is is called “Functional Dyspepsia” is because it is usually a diagnosis given to people after normal diagnostics show nothing wrong. Continue reading “Funky Sleep Linked to Functional Dyspepsia” »

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