Fibrosis File

The Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis (CPF) and the Westie Foundation of America (WFA) have formed a strategic alliance to fight Pulmonary Fibrosis. The WFA is a canine organization focused on the health of West Highland terriers or “Westies”. Interstitial Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) is known in the dog world as Westie lung disease.

image041Researchers in human lung disease and in veterinary medicine agreed the Westie presented as a possible model for research that would allow researchers to identify and target therapies that may save the dogs and humans from the disease. Comparative research is the term commonly used for research efforts that are done with animals and humans, comparing the disease in both species and identifying the commonalities and differences. It is the differences that often point to possible treatments for disease, according to researchers.

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Genoa Pharmaceuticals, a biotechnology company developing therapies for the treatment of Interstitial Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF), announced the completion of a $1.2 million financing. Funds from the financing will be used to advance its lead program, GP-101 (aerosol pirfenidone).

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Outside the United States, only oral pirfenidone is approved for the treatment of IPF. Sold by InterMune in Europe, this product has shown promise to extend life. However, the oral drug has been associated with gastrointestinal side effects that limit dosing and challenge patient compliance. Genoa has created GP-101 as a proprietary aerosol pirfenidone formulation for direct inhalation delivery to the lung. Compared to the oral medicine, inhaled GP-101 delivers an increased pirfenidone lung dose.

Chinese herbs, including JHQG, BFXL, and BFHX, may show significant benefits for patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), IPF and influenza according to a recent study presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Arthritis Help

Many of our friends with Pulmonary Fibrosis are coping with arthritis. As you shop and ready for this holiday season, try these tips from the Arthritis Foundation!

  • Put your car key in a stiff sleeve that allows you to turn it with your palm or fist instead of grasping it with your fingers. Make one out of cardboard or build up the handle with thick tape or foam padding.

    • If you have trouble gripping the wheel or gear shift, use golf, baseball or weight lifting gloves when you drive. Consider purchasing a vinyl steering-wheel cover to provide cushioning and make the wheel easier to grip.

    • Hold packages with your arms wrapped around them. Don’t lower items like shopping bags. Bend your knees to lower bags into car trunk.

    • Use gift bags instead of wrapping presents. Order pre-printed holiday cards and envelopes. Purchase a rubber stamp with your name and address that you can use all year long rather than peel-off labels.

    • If traveling, make sure your suitcase has wheels and a pull-up handle. Bring a pillow for back support or a head rest on long trips.

    • Keep a rubber, jar-opener gripper in your purse or pocket to easily grasp door knobs and avoid germs!

    • Turn a trip to the grocery store into an opportunity to exercise. Push the shopping cart once around the perimeter of the store without stopping. You will get a chance to see what is on sale before you start filling up the cart.

    • When shopping, look for products that have flip-style caps instead of screw tops.

    • When cleaning up, keep your fingers extended when using a sponge and sit when you do the dishes.

    • Use a dustpan with a long handle that allows you to sweep up the dust without bending. If you do not have one, attach the tubing from a used roll of gift wrap to the short handled dustpan with masking tape.