Newspaper headlines: Alzheimer's breakthrough and office 'risk'

Health stories take centre stage in the papers, with the Times reporting that scientists have created the first drug to halt Alzheimer's disease.

"Mental decline was halted for 18 months in some patients, in results hailed as the strongest sign yet that an effective treatment for the disease is near," says the paper.

"Researchers said that the drug - taken as a tablet twice a day - could soon become the first medicine given to Alzheimer's patients to keep the disease at bay for as long as possible.

"The final-stage trial had at first appeared to be a failure as the drug did not work in patients who were taking other dementia medicines. However, among the 15% of 891 patients not taking other medicines, the drug appeared to have remarkable effects."

Image copyright Science Photo Library

The Mail reports that the "breakthrough drug" has been shown to halt or even reverse the "devastating progression" of Alzheimer's.

"The drug, called LMTX, even slowed dementia patients' brain shrinkage, according to results presented yesterday at the world's largest Alzheimer's conference," says the Mail.

"In some case, even severely ill patients were said to have shown extraordinary recoveries thanks to the drug - which dissolves tangles of a protein called 'tau' that gather in the brain.

"One patient from London was so ill he could no longer read, forgetting the plot of a book before he had got to the end of a page. Within a few months of starting a course of LMTX he had regained so much of his memory that he could finish a 300-page novel, the scientists said."


Eye-catching headlines

  • There's nowt so British as Yorkshire folk, DNA map of the nation reveals: An extensive study of 15,000 DNA samples submitted to a private genealogy research company has concluded that people from Yorkshire are 41.7% Anglo-Saxon - more than residents of any other part of the country and more than the national average of 36.94% Times
  • Crucial new antibiotics could be hiding up your nostrils: Scientists were amazed to discover that a bacterium which lives in the human nostril produces an antibiotic that they believe can form the basis of new therapies for hard-to-treat infections Telegraph
  • Peter Rabbit first edition in Potter memorabilia sale: A first edition of classic children's book The Tale of Peter Rabbit is going under the hammer today featuring 41 full-page drawings and expected to fetch £35,000 Guardian

Working in an office is as bad as smoking, proclaims the Telegraph.

The paper says a study published in The Lancet concludes that sedentary lifestyles now pose as great a threat to public health as smoking and cause more deaths than obesity.

"Workers who spend several hours each day at their desk should change their routine to include a five-minute break every hour, as well as take exercise at lunchtimes and evenings, the study recommended," says the Telegraph.

"An hour of brisk walking or cycling spread over a day was enough to combat the dangers of eight hours sitting in the office, the researchers said.

"Current public health advice recommends just half this level of activity - yet almost half of women and one third of men fail to achieve even this."

Image copyright Science Photo Library

The Times says the scientists said there was no need to go to a gym - walking or cycling would do - and big events such as the Olympics did not help because they created unrealistic expectations.

Workers should make sure they stand up every hour and employers should allow staff to go for a walk at lunchtime, continues the Times.

"At least an hour of physical activity a day may be required to offset the harmful effects of sitting at a desk for eight hours, according to the latest study to highlight the perils of a sedentary lifestyle," says the Guardian.


There are conflicting assessments of the UK economy in the wake of the decision to leave the European Union.

The Guardian says there were downbeat reports from sectors covering car manufacturing, High Street shops and building construction.

The paper says Chancellor Philip Hammond made it clear that there would be no repeat of the second-quarter economic growth in the months following Brexit.

"In the latest batch of surveys released today, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said its members were gloomy about the prospects for growth, jobs and investment; the British Retail Consortium said jobs were being shed even in the months leading up to the referendum; and Rics - the body that represents chartered surveyors - said workloads for construction had weakened.

"Retail sales were also reported to be falling at the fastest rate in four years."

The Express takes a very different tone, saying that the UK's economy is "booming" post-Brexit.

The paper points to GDP figures that show the economy grew by 0.6% in the three months to the end of June. However, the EU referendum only took place on 23 June.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionBroadcaster Henry Bonsu and Newsweek editor Matt McAllester join the BBC News Channel to review Thursday's front pages.

The Times says the higher-than-expected rate of growth was driven by a "stellar performance" from the industrial sector which delivered its biggest increase in output in almost 17 years.

The i says economists were surprised that uncertainty in the run-up to the EU referendum vote had no impact on UK economic growth.

What cannot be doubted are major investments by pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, London City Airport and fast food chain McDonald's.

"The economy received a post-Brexit boost yesterday after the announcement of three big investment schemes that bring the promise of several thousand extra jobs," says the Times.

The Telegraph says Britain enjoyed a Brexit bounce as companies announced thousands of new jobs, markets rose and official figures showed economic growth accelerated in the run-up to the referendum.

The i says GlaxoSmithKline brushed aside Brexit concerns and announced it is pumping £275m into its three UK manufacturing sites.

In a leading article, the Times comments: "The economy has not ground to a halt. The doom and gloom forecasts of a Brexit vote's impact have not come true, at least not yet."


Finally, the Times reports that Apple has bought the next series of James Corden's Carpool Karaoke skits from The Late Late Show.

Image copyright PA

"The premise is simple: a celebrity sings pop songs from the passenger seat of a car while being chauffeured by the British comedian who has taken the United States by storm," says the Times.

"The sketches have been a feature of the programme since Corden became presenter in March last year. They generate hundreds of millions of views on YouTube."

Famously, First Lady Michelle Obama was the guest last week when she sang Stevie Wonder's Signed, Sealed, Delivered and Beyonce's Single Ladies as Corden drove her across the White House driveway.