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Teva launch generic version of EpiPen for children

A generic version of Mylan’s EpiPen, manufactured by Teva, is now available for children weighing between 15kg and 30kg in the United States, at a cost of $300 for a twin pack.

The generic, which gained FDA approval for patients weighing more than 30kg in August last year, is the first generic version of an auto-injector for the treatment of allergic reactions.

Children wait six and half years longer than adults for new cancer drugs, study says

Children wait six and half years longer than adults to access new cancer drugs, according to a study from Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center.

Cancer drugs approved by the FDA took on average 6.5 years to go from first clinical trial in adults to first clinical trial in children, the study says.

“Despite knowing that these agents are effective anticancer drugs, it's taking too long to even start studying these therapies in children,” study author, Dr Steven DuBois said.

Children born in poverty show major differences in brain function, study shows

Children born into poverty show major differences in early brain function, according to research from the University of East Anglia.

Children aged between four months and four years old, from lower income families in rural India, had weaker brain activity and were more likely to be distracted, compared to children in Midwest America.

Postoperative radiation can triple survival in children with brain cancer

Radiation immediately following surgery in children with the third most common form of paediatric brain tumour, ependymoma, can triple survival, new research, led by Thomas E. Merchant, D.O., Ph.D., of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, shows.

“Historically, children under the age of 3 with ependymoma have a worse prognosis than older children,” Merchant said. “However, results from this clinical trial show that even in young children, survival can be improved when radiation is administered immediately after surgery.”

Probiotics have no effect on children with gastroenteritis, study shows

Image Credit: Nicola Fawcett

Despite the claims of marketing campaigns and advertisements, probiotics have no effect on gastroenteritis on children, according to a new study from the University of Calgary.

While a multibillion dollar industry has arisen around claims that probiotics can effectively treat an array of ailments and sicknesses in recent years, new research suggests that probiotic products have no effect on one condition, gastroenteritis, commonly known as stomach flu.

More children suffering from type 2 diabetes in England and Wales

The number of children and young people suffering from type-2 diabetes has increased in England in Wales over the past four years, according to figures released by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH).

Drugs should be preferred first-choice treatment for ADHD

Ritalin and other amphetamines should be the preferred first-choice medications for the short-term treatment of ADHD, according to a study published in the Lancet Psychiatry Journal.

The review of ADHD drugs found that all of the medications studied (apart from modafinil in adults) were more efficacious than placebo. The authors of the study argued that methylphenidate, sold under the brand name Ritalin, is the most effective and best tolerated treatment for ADHD in children, while amphetamines were more effective in adults.

More antidepressants being prescribed to children in UK

Figures have revealed a trend towards an increased number of prescriptions for antidepressants for children in England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, in recent years.

Surprising number of parents agree to use of placebos in children

A study by Boston Children’s Hospital found that parents recognised that placebos are a vital part of research and that they believe it acceptable for children to receive placebos, in certain situations. The online survey asked 1,000 parents about their attitude to placebos and the results came back surprisingly in favour of placebos being used for treatment of children (with 86% in favour).

Promising new study for children’s brain cancer

There has been positive news coming from researchers at the Huntsman Cancer Institute, at the University of Utah, reporting on their recent research into a particular drugs’ efficacy at treating a subgroup of childhood brain cancer.

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