This site is intended for health professionals only

At the heart of general practice since 1960

Parents picking the sex of their baby, malaria pill to prevent liver cancer and a setback in the search for an HIV cure

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines on Monday 21 July.

A rise has been noted in UK parents flying to the US to select the sex of their baby, reports the Daily Mail, with 80% opting for a girl.

The largest facility clinic on the US West Coast now sees 10 UK patients a month with numbers rising by 20% year on year. Since the clinic was set up in 1997, it has helped create 750 UK babies.

A UK mother named only as Hayley said: ‘I’d always wanted a little girl but logistically, we didn’t want lots of children, we only wanted three, so we thought we’d go down this route’.

A non-prescription malaria pill may prevent liver cancer, according to scientists at University College London. Their research indicated that quinine derivative drug chloroquine could prevent the disease by swithing off two proteins which are thought to be turned on when liver cells die, triggering chronic inflation, according to the Telegraph.

But on a less positive note, previous hopes that HIV could be cured by early drug treatment may have been dashed as research performed on monkeys showed that ‘untouchable viral reservoirs’ form in the body even before HIV can be detected in the blood, writes the BBC.

Have your say