When Worlds Collide; Hiv, cloning, the CCR5 receptor and medical ethics

In our last blog post ( https://dduffee.wordpress.com/2018/11/25/hiv-the-search-for-a-cure-continues/ ) and previously ( https://dduffee.wordpress.com/2017/05/23/update-on-medical-genomics/ ) we described the role of the CCR5 white blood cell receptor and its relationship to the progression of HIV in an infected person as well as a genetic tool that had been used in other gene therapies (crispr-cas9 platform).  Now on the…

HIV; the search for a cure continues

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash In a case report published February 2009 in The New England Journal  of Medicine, a patient with HIV and leukemia received a stem cell transplant from another person to treat the leukemia. This “other person” (aka an allogeneic stem cell transplant donor) had white blood cells missing a surface receptor called CCR5….

CS Lewis, transposition and my hope for heaven

Originally posted on The Living Word:
Photo by Lysander Yuen on UnsplashIn his essay, Transposition, CS Lewis writes of a “continuity problem” between the natural life and the spiritual life.  How much of the natural life forms our desire for the spiritual (what he calls reasoning from below, a reasoning which skeptics use to show the unreality of the spiritual…

Common concerns in Primary Care Medicine; Do I need a Shingles Shot?

The disease commonly called “Shingles” is caused by reactivation of a Herpes type virus (varicella or chicken pox) which we have all encountered and fought off as kids, but can lay dormant in an area of a peripheral nerve called the “dorsal root ganglion”.  For reasons that are not completely clear, the virus which sets…

The power of analogy; Wordsworth and Lewis

Any time I read William Wordsworth’s poetry or CS Lewis’ prose, I am struck by the strength of their ideas when supported by analogy.  Why is an “analogical” argument so powerful?  Put simply, analogy is “embodied meaning”.  Malcolm Guite puts it this way,”[abstract images] are not only…phenomena going on “out there”, but [can be] a…

Upcoming SDCIM speaking engagements

Join us if you can… If you are receiving a category of medicines called immune checkpoint inhibitors for advance cancer, there are certain side effects that you and your primary team should be aware of.  We will be speaking on these at the link above.  If you can’t attend, let me know and I can…

On Cannabis withdrawal and Buprenorphine…SDCIM enters the fray

As SDCIM has entered the fray of opioid addiction detox and cessation therapies with our buprenorphine protocol (see link:  https://www.sdcim.com/new-page-2 ), the increasing awareness of cannabis side effects is also important to recognize.  So often we here about Cannabis as a panacea, but in this health news today article, we see that people can become habituated…

1 Peter 1:1-5; Calling all those who feel estranged…

The Letter from the Apostle Peter to “elect strangers” is an amazing word to those of us who may feel estranged from our own culture by the activities, voices, moods and attitudes it exudes.  In writing to a group of gentile Christian refugees who had migrated to foreign lands and then began to live with…

Immune checkpoint inhibition; a novel approach to fighting cancer

The Nobel prize for medicine went to 2 researches who developed ways for our own innate immune system to fight off certain types of cancer.  In a shift away from the classic “chemotherapy” approach, this new approach called “immune checkpoint inhibition”, blocks the ability of a cancer cell to turn off the immune system.  When…

Novel and Exciting Molecular Approaches to Fighting Cancer

Here are some exciting new approaches to cancer treatment. Molecular biology has stared to move from toxic chemotherapy that functions as a “biological nuclear explosion” in the body, wiping out everything (cancer and non cancer cells) in its path, to an elegant use of molecular techniques to specifically target cancer cells with the body’s own…