Terra Sigillata

Archives for December, 2009

If you think that the H1N1 pandemic is slowing down and have grown complacent with vaccination now that vaccines are more widely available, please learn something from last night’s tragic loss of local college student from Rhode Island, Lillian Chason: A University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student, who friends said was battling complications…

The Preamble Four years ago today, I wrote my first post in the blogosphere over at the old Blogger version of Terra Sigillata. The post, entitled, “A Humble PharmBoy Begins to Sow,” set out my mission to be an objective source for information on natural health remedies and drugs that come from nature, whether used…

Update: New ScienceBlogs colleague, Sharon Astyk at Casaubon’s Book, brought my attention to the fact that this local southern Colorado story has been picked up by CNN. Although I originally wrote this post rather tongue-in-cheek, some scientific evidence has accumulated for the benefits of cannabis in neuropathic pain, cancer pain and nausea, as well as…

Last week in Stockholm (and Oslo), the 2009 Nobel Prize winners were gloriously hosted while giving their lectures and receiving their medals and diplomas. In Chemistry this year, the Nobel was shared by Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, Thomas A Steitz, and Ada E Yonath for their studies on the structure and function of the ribosome, a remarkable…

In an article by Wayne Heilman of the Colorado Springs Gazette, I learned of a US FDA action against contract drug manufacturer Provident Pharmaceuticals. The company has been cited for good manufacturing practices (GMP) violations as well as the manufacture of unapproved drugs. The GMP violations are of a magnitude that FDA requested that Provident…

As I have said on occasion, the health care insurance reform debate seems to have underestimated the role of the clinically-trained pharmacist in improving care and cutting health care costs. Hands-on community-based drug management models have been operating around the US with far less fanfare than cut-rate prescriptions at Wal-Mart or CVS Caremark. So I…

By way of my substance abuse blogger colleague, The Discovering Alcoholic, I learned of yesterday’s New York Times article by Sarah Kershaw on Dr. A. Thomas McLellan. McLellan is a psychologist and drug abuse researcher with over 400 peer-reviewed publications to his credit. He held an academic appointment at the University of Pennsylvania School of…

Alexa Ray Joel, the daughter of Billy Joel and Christie Brinkley, was hospitalized Saturday with what I originally thought was an overdose of some type of sedative. However, today’s Newsday and MTV are reporting that the family is calling this an overdose of a homeopathic medication called Traumeel. Traumeel is manufacturer by an Albuquerque-based company…

An article by Paul Davidson in this morning’s USA Today reminded me of another reason why we need health care reform in the United States, or at least a move away from employment-linked health coverage: temporary employees may soon comprise 25% of the national workforce. An encouraging jobs report Friday underscored the growing prominence of…

I posed this question earlier today on Twitter and have already garnered a good number of responses. STEM – science, technology, engineering, and mathematics – is the acronym used by educators, researchers, and funding agencies focused on fundamental science. The US National Science Foundation, the primarily US STEM funding agency, states: As described in our…