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Diabetes drug may work against blood cancer, hearts 'five years older' than actual age and a call for pregnant women to slim down

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines

The anti-diabetic drug pioglitazone could help in the battle against blood cancer, early research suggests, according to a report in the BBC.

An international team of scientists gave the drug to patients with chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) alongside standard treatment and it was found that those who received the combination therapy were more likely to be free of the disease for longer. Scientists hope this combination therapy approach may prove helpful for similar cancers.

Elsewhere, the Independent carries a story on new data released by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in the US which suggests that three out of four Americans have hearts that are five years older than their actual age.

The US research, which analysed data from every state and from the Framingham Heart Study, also discovered regional disparities. Adults living in the country’s south had significantly higher heart ages with Mississippi, West Virginia, Louisiana, Kentucky and Alabama topping the list.

Finally, theMirror reports that babies are six times more likely to get Type 2 diabetes later in life if their mums have gestational diabetes.

A Diabetes UK study urges women to avoid putting on too much baby weight to make it less likely they will develop the pregnancy-related condition.

Diabetes UK chief executive Barbara Young said: ‘Gestational diabetes can cause birth defects, stillbirth and complications for the mother. But it is also important women understand it leaves a frightening legacy, putting the child at increased risk of a serious health condition.’

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