PHCentral News is gathered daily to bring you the latest developments in pulmonary hypertension treatments and research as well as stories we think are useful on an array of topics.  Under current news, you will find a dynamic list of stories for the last thirty (30) days.  You will find older news stories in our archives.    Stories about specific treatments can also be found in the medical section.

If you run across a PH news story we've missed or important story with broad appeal, please send us the link and we'll make sure it gets added.   Send news:  contact/info+phcentral+org.

  • September 2, 2014
  • First recommendations on all new oral anticoagulants in pulmonary embolism published
  • (Medical Xpress) The first recommendations on the use of all new oral anticoagulants in pulmonary embolism are published today in new ESC Guidelines. The guidelines are launched at ESC Congress by Professor Stavros V. Konstantinides (Germany/Greece) and Professor Adam Torbicki (Poland).
  • September 1, 2014
  • USB Pulse Oximeter Device For COPD Receives FDA Clearance In The U.S.
  • (Lung Disease News) Minneapolis based Nonin Medical, Inc., inventor of finger pulse oximetry, announced Thursday that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the Nonin Model 3231 OEM/eHealth finger pulse oximeter for use in the United States, a medical device that can prove useful for patients suffering from COPD.
  • August 31, 2014
  • What's Going to Be Hot at ERS 2014
  • (Medscape) First results from AMBITION, the large pulmonary arterial hypertension trial, will be presented at the European Respiratory Society (ERS) International Congress 2014, which runs from September 6 to 10.
  • Pulmonary Hypertension Associated With Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease and Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
  • (Medscape) Severe pulmonary hypertension worsens the prognosis of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). With the aim of better understanding the pathogenesis of this event and identifying the possible targets for therapeutic intervention, a great deal of clinical and translational research is now focused on this relevant field of medicine.
  • New Merger Bolsters Development of Drug For Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis, a Disease Associated With PH
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) Although clinically unexplored, pulmonary hypertension (PH) in the setting of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a significant reality in many patients (32 to 85%).
  • August 30, 2014
  • ILH Opens Comprehensive Pulmonary Hypertension Center
  • (Healthcare Journal of New Oreleans) A new center offering specialized expertise for the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary hypertension (PH), a rare and serious disease affecting the lungs, has opened in ILH’s University Medical Office Building, 2025 Gravier Street. Staffed by a multidisciplinary team of specialists from LSU and Tulane, the new Comprehensive Pulmonary Hypertension Center (CPHC) will offer seamless PH care, expert nursing support, access to PH research studies, patient support groups, and inpatient care should patients need to be hospitalized.
  • Characterization of right ventricular remodeling and failure in a chronic pulmonary hypertension model
  • (American Journal of Physiology) In pulmonary hypertension (PH), right ventricular (RV) dysfunction and failure is the main determinant of a poor prognosis. We aimed to characterize RV structural and functional differences during adaptive RV remodeling and progression to RV failure in a large animal model of chronic PH. Postcapillary PH was created surgically in swine (n=21).
  • August 29, 2014
  • Protein in 'good cholesterol' may be a key to treating pulmonary hypertension
  • (Medical Xpress) Oxidized lipids are known to play a key role in inflaming blood vessels and hardening arteries, which causes diseases like atherosclerosis. A new study at UCLA demonstrates that they may also contribute to pulmonary hypertension, a serious lung disease that narrows the small blood vessels in the lungs.
  • August 28, 2014
  • FDA Grants Clearance For Vibralung Acoustical Percussor Respiratory Device
  • (Lung Disease News) Westmed, Inc., a producer of respiratory medical devices, recently announced a 510 (k) clearance grant from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to distribute the Vibralung Acoustical Percussor (VAP), a device designed to help patients with respiratory diseases or difficulties in releasing secretions from the lungs.
  • August 27, 2014
  • Pulmonary Hypertension & Viagra: Researchers Discover Novel Mechanisms of Sildenafil for Disease
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) Sildenafil, known more commonly by its brand name Viagra, is an inhibitor of phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE-5), an enzyme found in various tissues and involved in the cardiovascular system, and is frequently used in the treatment of PH, since it can improve exercise capacity, PH symptoms, and haemodynamics. However, the molecular mechanisms behind the protective effect exerted by this drug are not fully understood. .
  • August 26, 2014
  • How accurate is the TR jet derived Pulmonary artery systolic pressure ?
  • (Venkatesan) Measuring TR peak velocity is the most popular  method to assess pulmonary arterial  pressure.It is  universally  believed  TR jet predicts the systolic PA pressure fairly accurately. By all means it is  a wrong perception.

    At best ,  it has only 40% correlation with cath  derived PAP...
  • New Report Identifies Key Features in Systemic Sclerosis and PAH
  • (PHNews) Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a disease that affects multiple organs, with the heart being frequently affected. Different heart structures can be affected leading to pericardial disease, arrhythmias, conduction system abnormalities, direct myocardial disease such as pulmonary arterial hypertension.
  • August 25, 2014
  • Climate Change and Dust Increase Respiratory Disease
  • (Guardian Liberty Voice) The connection between dust, allergies, and asthma is clear, but the link between the increasing problem of respiratory disease and climate change is not. The confusing lack of clarity around this issue is exacerbated by mixed messages from the very sources that should be helping to clarify it– the U.S. government.
  • Novel Nitric Oxide Delivery System May Someday Improve PH Treatments
  • (PHNews) GeNo LLC,  is currently testing next-generation inhaled nitric oxide (NO) drug delivery systems for use in both hospital and outpatient settings that could come to impact treatments for those with pulmonary hypertension.
  • August 24, 2014
  • Gum Disease: a Matter of Life and Death?
  • (PR Wire) Most people are very familiar with the reality that, if they don't practice regular brushing and overall good dental hygiene, they are at risk for developing gum disease. Less well known is the full extent of the potential harm caused by gum disease. In addition to very unpleasant side effects including bad breath, mouth sores, and loss of teeth, research shows that the dangers of gum disease may have a negative impact on more than just your mouth. Recent studies have linked gum disease to other life threatening health concerns such as lung disease, cancer, and even heart failure. Dr. Peiman Soleymani of Beverly Hills Periodontics & Dental Implant Center, a leading specialist in periodontal disease in Los Angeles, wants to make sure the public is aware of these well documented but somewhat surprising dangers. 
  • August 23, 2014
  • Ranolacine blunts myocardial remodelling in a model of pulmonary hypertension
  • (Cardiovascular Research) PAH induced remodeling with chamber-specific aspects. Ranolacine prevented constitutive INaL enhancement and blunted myocardial remodeling. Partial mechanical unloading, resulting from an unexpected effect of RAN on pulmonary vasculature, might contribute to this effect.
  • August 22, 2014
  • A Novel Adipocytokine, Omentin, Inhibits Monocrotaline-Induced Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension In Rats
  • ( Omentin is a novel adipocytokine mainly expressed in visceral rather than subcutaneous adipose tissue. Several epidemiological studies demonstrated the negative relationship between blood omentin level and occurrence of obesity, type 2 diabetes and hypertension. Increases of inflammatory responses, contractile reactivity and structural remodeling of vascular wall contribute to hypertension development. Our in vitro studies previously demonstrated that omentin inhibited those hypertension-related pathological processes. In addition, our in vivo study demonstrated that intravenously injected omentin acutely inhibited agonists-induced increases of blood pressure in rats. However, the chronic effects of omentin on hypertension development are not determined. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that chronic omentin treatment may inhibit pulmonary arterial (PA) hypertension (PAH).
    Chronic omentin treatment inhibited MCT-induced increases in PA pressure. Omentin inhibited MCT-induced right ventricular hypertrophy as well as increase of lung to body weight ratio. Histologically, omentin inhibited MCT-induced PA hyperplasia. Further, omentin inhibited the impairment of both endothelium-dependent and -independent relaxations mediated by acetylcholine and sodium nitroprusside, respectively. In conclusion, we for the first time demonstrate that chronic omentin treatment inhibits MCT-induced PAH in rats via inhibiting vascular structural remodeling and abnormal contractile reactivity.

  • August 21, 2014
  • Effects of Bisoprolol and Losartan Treatment in the Hypertrophic and Failing Right Heart.
  • (CARDIAC FAILURE) Bisprolol and Losartan failed in an animal trial, using pulmonary trunk banding for initiation of heart failure. 
    The researchers stated: " In our PTB-model of pressure overload induced RV hypertrophy and failure, treatment with bisoprolol and losartan did not demonstrate any beneficial effects in compensated or decompensated RV failure."
  • August 20, 2014
  • Endothelin@25 - new agonists, antagonists, inhibitors and emerging research frontiers: IUPHAR Review 12.
  • (British Journal of Pharmacology) 25 years of Endothelin research in review and outlook
  • Novel Mechanisms of Sildenafil in Pulmonary Hypertension Involving Cytokines/Chemokines, MAP Kinases and Akt.
  • ( New data suggest a beneficial effect of sildenafil on inflammatory and kinase signaling mechanisms that substantially contribute to its protective effects, and may have potential implications in designing future therapeutic strategies in the treatment of pulmonary hypertension.
  • August 19, 2014
  • Obituary: Dame Julia Polak DBE
  • ( Julia Polak a professor at London's King's College got IPAH diagnosis in the 90ies and got a heart and lung transplant in 1995. After her PH diagnosis she changed her scientific work towars tissue engineering, to build or grow lung tissue.
    Really worth reading.  
  • New Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) Diagnosis Guidelines
  • (Netscape) Patients with unexplained daytime sleepiness should undergo a sleep study, preferably polysomnography (PSG), according to new recommendations developed by the American College of Physicians.

    However, these recommendations for diagnosing obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), based in part on a literature search, are weak, and the quality of the evidence was graded as low or moderate, according to the authors...
  • Boehringer Ingelheim Announces U.S. Filing for the Fixed-Dose Combination Tiotropium Plus Olodaterol for Patients with COPD
  • (Market Watch) RIDGEFIELD, Conn., Aug. 19, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Boehringer Ingelheim today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) accepted for review the New Drug Application (NDA) for the fixed-dose combination (FDC) of tiotropium and olodaterol delivered via the Respimat® inhaler for the proposed indication of long-term, once-daily maintenance treatment of airflow obstruction in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including chronic bronchitis and/or emphysema. Tiotropium + olodaterol FDC will not be indicated to treat acute deteriorations of COPD or to treat asthma.

    Tiotropium + olodaterol FDC is an investigational treatment consisting of the long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA) tiotropium and the long-acting beta agonist (LABA) olodaterol, and is being evaluated for once-daily use via the Respimat® inhaler. The Respimat® inhaler is a propellant-free inhaler that generates a slow-moving mist.
  • August 18, 2014
  • Phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors augment UT-15C-stimulated ATP release from erythrocytes of humans with PAH
  • (PubMed) UT-15C-induced ATP release was greater in PAH erythrocytes than in healthy human erythrocytes in both the presence and the absence of PDE5 inhibitors. The finding that prostacyclin analogs and PDE5 inhibitors work synergistically to enhance release of the potent vasodilator ATP from PAH erythrocytes provides a new rationale for the co-administration of these drugs in this disease. Moreover, these results suggest that the erythrocyte is a novel target for future drug development for the treatment of PAH.
  • New Clues From Heart Imaging Give Researchers Insight Into PH
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) A team of researchers from the Imperial College London, UK, has preformed a three-dimensional speckle tracking (3D-ST) study and found that patients who have pulmonary hypertension (PH) are found to suffer from reduced right ventricular (RV) strain and notably more dyssynchronous ventricles compared to healthy individuals.
  • August 17, 2014
  • Playing the harmonica for health
  • (STL Today) As people age, the diaphragm muscle weakens and makes it harder to breathe deeply. The rib cage is not as flexible to allow for lung expansion. Alveoli, tiny air sacs in the lungs, lose their elasticity. All of these changes can cause oxygen levels to drop and breathing to become more difficult.
  • August 16, 2014
  • Paediatric PAH treatment goals identified
  • (MedWire News) “Although predictors of survival may be important when starting treatment for PAH, this does not mean that they can be used as treatment goals”, remark Mark-Jan Ploegstra and colleagues from University Medical Center Groningen.
  • Left Ventricle Function Before and After CTEPH-Associated Surgery Assessed In New Study
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) A team of researchers has published their results assessing left atrial volume in chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) patients before and after pulmonary thromboendarterectomy (PTE), a surgical procedure that removes organized, clotted blood from the pulmonary arteries.
  • August 15, 2014
  • Oldies Can Be Goodies: ERA Macitentan Effective in Treating PAH During Unique Trial
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) Macitentan was under evaluation in the Phase 3 clinical trial SERAPHIN. The study was unique in that it tested not only 6MWD but also patient-relevant outcomes. Cardiopulmonary haemodynamics, morbidity, and mortality were evaluated during SERAPHIN, and the two doses of macitentan delivered (3 and 10 mg) demonstrated significant improvements in all reported parameters. According to Dr. John Granton, Director of the Pulmonary Hypertension Program at Toronto General Hospital, “Both doses produced a reduction in peripheral vascular resistance and increase in cardiac output compared to placebo.” Dr. Granton spoke in a news article on MedNet, entitled, “Pulmonary Hypertension: New Therapies in Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension and Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension,” produced after the Annual Congress of the European Respiratory Society.
  • August 14, 2014
  • Pulmonary Hypertension & Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: Categories, Risk Factors And Treatments Profiled
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) Pulmonary Hypertension (PH) and Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH) are not popular topics of media coverage and popular conversation in the way that Cancer and Heart Disease are. Despite increasing numbers of people diagnosed with PH/PAH worldwide, pulmonary hypertension has been a historically neglected disease. Which is a bit puzzling, since PH/PAH symptoms can be debilitating, initially including shortness of breath and fatigue, but if left untreated, they can lead to right ventricular failure, volume overload, and death. PAH has a high mortality rate, with 60 to 80 percent of patients dying within five years of diagnosis. However, because the molecular processes associated with the disease are difficult to define simply, understanding PH therefore remains enigmatic to most laypeople.
  • August 13, 2014
  • CHEST Posts Free to View Version of PAH Guidelines for Clinicians
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) The new guidelines for the management of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) in adults published by The American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST) is free to view in this month’s online issue of the journal CHEST for patients and clinicians alike.
  • Study Shows Patients With Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Benefit From Specialized Care Centers
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) Expert medical specialty care for rare diseases like pulmonary arterial hypertension was recently the subject of review in an article by Sean M. Studer, MD, MS, Chief of Medicine, Woodhull Hospital Medical Center, NY. The article, entitled “Do Patients With Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Benefit From Referral to a Specialized Center?” and published in the journal Advances in Pulmonary Hypertension, explored the possibility of improved care for patients suffering from PAH in specialized centers, since direct care for patients outside these centers is not common practice. According to the author, “to best support the argument for referral, this anticipated benefit should be evidence-based, include independent accreditation of specialty centers, and offer multiple opportunities to improve outcome and quality of life in PAH.”
  • FDA approves donor lung preservation device that may result in more lung transplants
  • ( Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the XVIVO Perfusion System (XPS) with STEEN Solution, a device for preserving donated lungs that do not initially meet the standard criteria for lung transplantation but may be transplantable if there is more time to observe and evaluate the organ’s function to determine whether the lung is viable for transplantation.
  • August 12, 2014
  • How Obesity and Diet Impact COPD
  • (MPR) Abstract: The global increase in the prevalence and incidence of obesity has called serious attention to this issue as a major public health concern. Obesity is associated with many chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes, and recently the role of overweight and obesity in lung disease has received new interest. 
  • Does the Sea Air Have Curative Powers
  • (Wall Street Journal) In the 18th and 19th centuries, ocean air was considered a cure-all for nearly any illness, from depression to tuberculosis. But is there real science to the supposed healing powers of a visit to the sea? 
  • August 11, 2014
  • Pulmonary Hypertension & Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: Categories, Risk Factors And Treatments Profiled
  • (Pulmonary Hypertension News) Pulmonary Hypertension (PH) and Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH) are not popular topics of media coverage and popular conversation in the way that Cancer and Heart Disease are. Despite increasing numbers of people diagnosed with PH/PAH worldwide, pulmonary hypertension has been a historically neglected disease. Which is a bit puzzling, since PH/PAH symptoms can be debilitating, initially including shortness of breath and fatigue, but if left untreated, they can lead to right ventricular failure, volume overload, and death. PAH has a high mortality rate, with 60 to 80 percent of patients dying within five years of diagnosis. However, because the molecular processes associated with the disease are difficult to define simply, understanding PH therefore remains enigmatic to most laypeople.
  • August 10, 2014
  • TRAIL Deficient Mice Are Protected from Sugen/Hypoxia Induced Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension
  • (Diseases) Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a progressive lung disease diagnosed
    by an increase in pulmonary arterial blood pressure that is driven by a progressive vascular
    remodelling of small pulmonary arterioles. We have previously reported that tumor
    necrosis factor apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) protein expression is increased in
    pulmonary vascular lesions and pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMC) of
    patients with idiopathic PAH. The addition of recombinant TRAIL induces the
    proliferation and migration of PASMCs in vitro. TRAIL is required for hypoxia-induced
    pulmonary hypertension in mice, and blockade of TRAIL prevents and reduces disease
    development in other rodent models of PAH.
  • August 9, 2014
  • Arrhythmogenesis in Pulmonary Hypertension
  • (University of Manchester Library) Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a condition with severe morbidity and mortality. It is associated with an increase in incidence of all forms of arrhythmias which further increase morbidity and mortality. The monocrotaline (MCT) model of pulmonary hypertension (PH) in the rat is analogous to PAH in humans and was used to study how PH causes arrhythmias.
  • August 8, 2014
  • 'Stem cells show promise in stroke recovery'
  • (BBC) Although not directly PAH related, it is an indication of progressing Stem Cell research that will hopefully lead on day to better PH treatments.
    Infusing stem cells into the brain may help boost recovery after a stroke, according to a pilot study by Imperial College London.
    Scientists believe the cells encourage new blood vessels to grow in damaged areas of the brain.
    They found most patients were able to walk and look after themselves independently by the end of the trial, despite having suffered severe strokes.
  • August 7, 2014
  • Discovery sheds light on how changes in lungs can hurt the heart
  • (MedicalXpress) A team of UW-Madison researchers has discovered important biomechanical changes in human arteries that could increase understanding of how pulmonary hypertension leads to heart failure.
  • August 6, 2014
  • Macitentan Effective in Treating PAH During Unique Trial
  • (PHNews) Endothelin-receptor antagonists (ERAs), recently discussed on Pulmonary Hypertension News as being effective for treating pulmonary hypertension, have been a standard part of clinician’s portfolios along with phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors and calcium channel blockers
  • August 5, 2014
  • Emphysema Burdens PH Patients
  • (PHNews) Pulmonary hypertension (PH) on its own is burdensome to the patients it afflicts, but when PH is combined with other diseases, the conditions can be devastating.
  • August 4, 2014
  • Early detection of chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension
  • (PH News) A study presented at the Annual Congress of the European Respiratory Society in Barcelona, Spain, identified the benefits of a telephone monitoring program in helping to diagnose CTEPH in its early stages following a diagnosis of pulmonary embolism.

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