Baby with Rare Skin Disorder Gets Life-Changing Treatment

Baby with Rare Skin Disorder Gets Life-Changing Treatment

MADRID —Doctors in Spain have found a life-changing treatment for a 9-month-old baby suffering from a rare, incurable disease that caused her to have thick, dry skin.

The baby girl, whose name was not disclosed, was born earlier this year at Nino Jesus Hospital in Madrid weighing 4 kilograms (8.8 pounds), which is a slightly above average for a newborn.

The baby skin before the treatment. (H. Gregorio Maranon/Real Press)

However, over time, her weight dwindled to half of what is expected in babies her age, which meant she is considered severely malnourished with a risk of death, according to the World Health Organization.

The child suffers from ichthyosis,  a rare incurable skin disease that produces thick scaly skin, with varying degrees of symptoms or areas of the body affected, leading to serious discomfort and increasing the chance of infection.

The condition kept the baby from feeding or sleeping properly.

One of the doctors treating her, Rafael Correa, said in a press statement obtained by Zenger News, that the patient was missing an important protein in charge of maintaining her skin’s structure..

He added  her skin was “unstructured” and though the genetic mutation cannot be helped, the inflammation process caused by the disease could be treated to reduce the symptoms.

Doctors studied 150 different variables and used a mathematical algorithm to compare them with healthy children.

They found the patient had two cells linked to the inflammation. They applied a medicine used to treat psoriasis in adults, which is also directed at the altered cells causing the baby’s symptoms and subsequent malnourishment.

The patient has since gained enough weight to be considered average and her symptoms have almost disappeared, giving hope to others suffering from the illness.

However, she has not been cured and will require periodic injections of the treatment. Doctors hope her immune system will adapt to the medication over time.

“We should encourage doctors to take initiative and find solutions to give patients their daily routine back,” Jose Maria Soria de Francisco, president of the Spanish Association for Ichthyosis (SAI) told Zenger.

The members of the team participating in the project. (H. Gregorio Maranon/Real Press)

He explained  there are 36 types of ichthyosis, each with its own properties. Using the findings from this case, scientists could offer individual treatments to among the 300 people reportedly suffering from it in Spain. Statistics on how many such cases there are on a global scale were not immediately available.

Most patients suffering from ichthyosis need to spend about two hours daily applying cream-based skin treatments to relieve their symptoms. The medicine can cost 250-500 euros (roughly $300-$585) monthly, and it’s not covered by the Spanish health-care system.

“Ichthyosis knows no borders and can affect rich and poor families alike,” says SAI’s president.

(Edited by Matthew Hall and Fern Siegel)



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Suspected drug dealer allegedly throws dog to the dogs

Suspected drug dealer allegedly throws dog to the dogs

Police making a drug-related raid at an apartment in southeast Spain encountered a pack of starving dogs in unsightly conditions, as well as an injured dog that had apparently been thrown to the other animals to be eaten as food. Police in El Ejido said they arrested the unit’s dweller, a 23-year-old man only identified by the initials F.J.R.S, on charges earlier this month that include animal abuse and drug possession.

A police spokesman said that the injured animal was a mixed-breed German shepherd that could be seen in the video with an injury that left it unable to walk. Police said the dog only survived because it was rescued at the last minute by officers on the scene.

The National Police said in a new release that the investigation started after several complaints from the suspect’s neighbors, who said they believed he was selling drugs from his home, which they claimed also contained a hidden marijuana crop. Officers began watching people coming and going from the property, with visitors staying very briefly, and allegedly saw cannabis plants on the terrace.

They raided the property and managed to stop the six malnourished dogs from eating the pooch which had allegedly been thrown to them as food. The suspect reportedly saw the officers coming, and according to the press release, tried to escape by jumping from terrace to terrace dressed in only his underwear. Officers eventually managed to surround and arrest him.

The dog that was intended as food for the other dogs. (Newsflash)

 

Animal control catches the malnourished dogs. (Newsflash)

The suspect is in custody awaiting trial, per an order from the Instructional Court of El Ejido. The National Police said that animal abuse in which the creature is injured but does not die is punishable with up to one year in prison in Spain. Information on the penalties associated with the drug charges he faces were not immediately available.

The dogs, meantime, were placed in the care of the SOS Adopta animal protection association.

(Edited by Matthew Hall.)



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That’s One Cross Dresser: Knifeman in Women’s Clothing Wanted for Stabbing

That’s One Cross Dresser: Knifeman in Women’s Clothing Wanted for Stabbing

A man wearing a dress, stockings and a pink sweatband on his head chased and stabbed a 52-year-old man several times in an underground parking garage in Greenwich Village, New York City police said.

The altercation occurred at mid-afternoon on Aug. 24 and was captured on closed-circuit television. The police released that footage in hopes obtaining the name and whereabouts of the attacker and are asking for the public’s help.

 

The video starts with the as-yet-unnamed victim fleeing his assailant, when he falls to the ground and is stabbed. A witness wearing a red shirt tries to stop the attack but is thwarted by the knife-wielding assailant. The victim manages to get on his knees, only to suffer another stab. He is finally able to stand up as the man in the red shirt helps him escape; the video then freezes to show a clear view of the suspect, who was subsequently seen fleeing west on 14th Street toward Fifth Avenue.

A police statement said the victim was stabbed multiple times in the neck and chest and taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was initially listed in stable condition. His current status is unknown.

The alleged assailant dressed in black dress and pink headband, holding a knife in New York City in an undated photo. (Newsflash)

Police describe the assailant as a male between 20 to 30 years of age, 5-foot-11-inches tall and weighing 200 pounds. He is wearing a black dress, matching stockings and a pink bandanna. It’s unclear what started the argument that culminated in the attack.

Anyone with information on the attacker’s identity is asked to call the department’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477)  or by going to www.nypdcrimestoppers.com.  A tip that leads to an arrest and indictment is eligible for an award of up to $2,500.

(Edited by Matthew Hall and Stephen Gugliociello.)



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What Two Teens Did On Summer Vacation: Discover Gold

What Two Teens Did On Summer Vacation: Discover Gold

Two Israeli teens helping an archaeological team during their summer break made a find that’s the envy of their professional counterparts: a clay pot containing 425 meticulously preserved 24-carat gold coins that date back to the 9th century.

“It was amazing,” said Oz Cohen, one of the teens who volunteered at the excavation site in central Israel before entering military service after the summer holidays. “I dug in the ground and when I excavated the soil, saw what looked like very thin leaves. When I looked again, I saw they were gold coins. It was really exciting to find such a special and ancient treasure.”

The dig took place at a site being prepped for a housing development. The two archaeologists in charge of the excavation, the Israel Antiquities Authority’s Liat Nadav-Ziv and Elie Haddad, said in a statement obtained by Zenger News that the treasure appeared to be deliberately buried at the site, because the pot containing the coins had been secured with a nail.

A man holds the cache as found at the site. (Yoli Schwartz, Israel Antiquities Authority/Real Press)

 

The cache as found at the site. (Yoli Schwartz/Israel Antiquities Authority/Real Press)

 

A man counts the cache as found at the site. (Yoli Schwartz/Israel Antiquities Authority/Real Press)

“The person who buried this treasure 1,100 years ago must have expected to retrieve it,” they said. “We can only guess what prevented him from returning to collect his treasure.”

The discovery is rare, indeed, as gold coins were traditionally melted and re-used over time, rather than preserved in their original form. Moreover, the coins provide a glimpse into trade relations in the Mediterranean region more than a millennium ago, according to the authority.

 

Most of the coins, which weighed a total of 845 grams (almost 2 pounds), were minted in the Islamic world. But some are from the Byzantine empire, which indicates that there was trade between Christian lands and the so-called Abbasid Caliphate, which controlled an empire that stretched from Persia to Baghdad in today’s Iraq.

The hoard consists of full gold dinars, an early Islamic currency, but also about 270 small gold cuttings that were used as small change. The rarest piece is a fragment of a gold solidus of the Byzantine emperor Theophilos, minted in the Byzantine empire’s capital of Constantinople. This fragment, according to Robert Kool, a coin expert at the authority, is rare material evidence of the continuous connections—war and trade—between the two rival empires during this period.

Israel Antiquities Authority excavations in the centre of the country. (Emil Aladjem/Israel Antiquities Authority/Real Press)

 

Liat Nadav-Ziv, director of the excavation, with the cache. (Yoli Schwartz/Israel Antiquities Authority/ Real Press)

“This rare treasure will certainly be a major contribution to research, as finds from the Abbasid period in Israel are relatively few,” Kool said. “Hopefully, the study of the hoard will tell us more about a period of which we still know very little.”

And the value of the gold coins? Though considered priceless today, Kool said 1,100 years ago, the entire hoard would have been enough to buy a luxurious house in one of the best neighborhoods in Fustat, then the wealthy capital of Egypt.

(Edited by Stephen Gugliociello and Matthew Hall.)



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Archaeologists Find Traces of Fertility Cult

Archaeologists Find Traces of Fertility Cult

Archaeologists in Romania have discovered polished tools and clay statues from what’s believed to be fertility cult from an ancient European civilization that existed 6,500 years ago. The discoveries, made at an archaeological site in Topolita, a village in Romania’s Neamt County, appear to predate what was previously thought to be the oldest confirmed European civilization.

Vasile Diaconu, a representative of the Neamt National Museum Complex and leader of the archaeological team that made the finds, told Zenger News the discoveries included numerous prehistoric objects such as “carved and polished stone tools, bone tools, but also splendid anthropomorphic and zoomorphic representations [i.e., depictions of divine beings in human form and animal form, respectively].”

Artifacts found at the archeological site in Romania in an undated photograph. (Real Press)

Diaconu says the human-style figures are modeled from clay in a very realistic way, with meticulous anatomical details. “Most experts say that all these human statuettes, mainly female characters, are the expression of a fertility cult, common to most sedentary prehistoric communities, who practiced agriculture,” he said.

Previous finds in in the area belong to the Cucuteni culture, the oldest confirmed civilization in Europe that existed from 5,200 to 3,200 BC. But the latest discoveries, including the remains of more than 20 prehistoric houses, are even older and have been labeled as being from the Pre-Cucutine era. Diaconu said that the anthropomorphic and zoomorphic representations found served as “the expression of the religious beliefs of 6 millennia ago.”

 

“This year’s discoveries from the site of the Pre-Cucuteni culture from Topolita are extremely valuable, first of all due to the large number of human statuettes, but also due to their typological variety,” he said. “Another special aspect is that some statuettes were located right inside the houses, which can confirm their religious symbolism.”

Artifacts found at the archeological site in Romania in an undated photograph. (Real Press)

 

Artifacts found at the archeological site in Romania in an undated photograph. (Real Press)

 

Artifacts found at the archeological site in Romania in an undated photograph. (Real Press)

The Pre-Cucuteni culture developed into the Cucuteni culture which, over the course of the fifth millennium, expanded from its roots in the Prut–Siret region along the eastern foothills of the Carpathian Mountains into the basins and plains of the Dnieper and Southern Bug rivers of modern-day Ukraine.

“The prehistoric civilizations in eastern Romania left behind remarkable vestiges,” Diaconu said, “which archaeologists frequently bring to light, trying to reconstruct those times.”

(Edited by Stephen Gugliociello and Matthew Hall.)



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VIDEO: Man in Black Dress Wanted in Knife Attack

VIDEO: Man in Black Dress Wanted in Knife Attack

A man wearing a dress, stockings and a pink sweatband on his head chased and stabbed a 52-year-old man several times in an underground parking garage in Greenwich Village, New York City police said.

The altercation occurred at mid-afternoon on Aug. 24 and was captured on closed-circuit television. The police released that footage in hopes obtaining the name and whereabouts of the attacker and are asking for the public’s help.

 

The video starts with the as-yet-unnamed victim fleeing his assailant, when he falls to the ground and is stabbed. A witness wearing a red shirt tries to stop the attack but is thwarted by the knife-wielding assailant. The victim manages to get on his knees, only to suffer another stab. He is finally able to stand up as the man in the red shirt helps him escape; the video then freezes to show a clear view of the suspect, who was subsequently seen fleeing west on 14th Street toward Fifth Avenue.

A police statement said the victim was stabbed multiple times in the neck and chest and taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was initially listed in stable condition. His current status is unknown.

The alleged assailant dressed in black dress and pink headband, holding a knife in New York City in an undated photo. (Newsflash)

Police describe the assailant as a male between 20 to 30 years of age, 5-foot-11-inches tall and weighing 200 pounds. He is wearing a black dress, matching stockings and a pink bandanna. It’s unclear what started the argument that culminated in the attack.

Anyone with information on the attacker’s identity is asked to call the department’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477)  or by going to www.nypdcrimestoppers.com.  A tip that leads to an arrest and indictment is eligible for an award of up to $2,500.

(Edited by Matthew Hall and Stephen Gugliociello.)



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