Posts

November 14, 2014

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6:38 PM | WHO: Poliovirus (cVDPVs) in South Sudan and Madagascar
Photo Credit WHO   #  9325   In my lifetime we’ve gone from seeing Polio as among the worst of the childhood scourges to nearly seeing it vanquished around the globe, thanks to nearly 60 years of vaccination efforts.  But the Poliovirus – which just a few short years ago seemed on the verge of global eradication – has been making a bit of a comeback of late.    So much so that last May we saw the WHO Declare Polio Spread A Public […]
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5:44 PM | Metabolism’s Surprising Importance in Cardiology
When you hear the word “metabolism,” the first thing that comes to mind is probably weight. You’ve likely heard people talk about having a slow metabolism or a fast metabolism, in reference to how quickly their bodies process food and burn calories. But did you know that metabolism plays an...
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5:36 PM | Biotech Tweets of the Week (November 10-14)
Time for a fresh batch of the best biotech-related tweets of the week, curated by @23aloha and @BioDueDiligence. You can also catch up on previous editions of this feature. Featured tickers: $ABBV $ACAD $AMGN $BDSI $BLUE $CAPR $CNAT $CXMI $DNDN $DVAX $FMI $GERN $GILD $HALO $JNJ $KITE $NUOT $OXGN $PBYI $PFE $RHHBY $RTRX $SNY $SRPT $TRGT Note you can use the search box at the upper right to find all BiotechDueDiligence content related to a particular stock of inter […]
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4:40 PM | MMWR Early Release: Multiple Dispatches On Ebola
Credit CDC PHIL   # 9324   I haven’t had time to read them yet, but the CDC’s MMWR has published the following half dozen Ebola-centric reports today.   MMWR Early Release November 14, 2014 / Vol. 63 / Early Release Evidence for a Decrease in Transmission of Ebola Virus — Lofa County, Liberia, June 8–November 1, 2014 Download Issue Evidence for Declining Numbers of Ebola Cases — Montserrado County, Liberia, […]
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4:15 PM | Crowdfunding cancer research – our latest experiment and how you can help
We've launched three exciting crowdfunding projects with our researchers. Will they receive the money they need? Only you can decide.
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3:40 PM | Saudi MOH: 1 New MERS Case In Riyadh
# 9323   The Saudi MOH is reporting a single MERS case today, that of a 58 y.o. Male, in stable condition and being treated at home, with `animal’ exposure.   The uptick in MERS Cases, which began in early September, continues with 16 cases reported thus far in November. While animal (primarily camel) exposure has been cited as a pathway for the virus to enter the human population, we’ve seen a good deal of (primarily) nosocomial spread of the virus as well, […]
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3:18 PM | ECDC: Rapid Risk Assessment On Portugal’s Legionnaire’s Disease Outbreak
  Credit ECDC   # 9322   Yesterday, in WHO: Legionnaire’s Disease Outbreak – Portugal, we saw the official announcement of one of the largest outbreaks of Legionella that we’ve seen inyears; more than 300 cases in a week’s time.  While not a record (Murcia, Spain saw 800+ cases in 2001), this is a very large cluster, and the outbreak is ongoing.   Based on the size and rapid growth of the cluster, the WHO called it a `major public […]
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2:16 PM | WHO Advisory Committee Meeting On Experimental Ebola Treatments
  # 9321   Although there are a number of potential vaccines and therapies being looked at as possibly being effective against the Ebola virus, none have been adequately tested for both safety and effectiveness.  Some interventions – like ZMapp, and blood transfusions from recovered patients – have been tried, but the extent to which they worked isn’t clear.   Figuring out how to use utilize these treatments in the midst of a raging epidemic […]
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2:00 PM | Your Friday Dose of Woo: Naturopathy and “bioresonance”
It’s been a long and entertaining week. Well, at least part of the week was entertaining. After all, it was hard not to be mightily amused at what happened when Dr. Mehmet Oz, known to the world as America’s Doctor but to skeptics as America’s Quack, asked his Twitter followers to ask him anything under…
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1:22 PM | Fitness Basics: 8 Basics to Reach Your Goals
Exercise is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle. It's not only great for you, but it makes you feel good and can improve your mood. The added benefits that you will see soon after starting... [[To read the full story, visit my website.]]
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12:06 PM | Supercentenarian genomes: but are they the right ones
GenomeWeb covered a recent paper from Stuart Kim's group at Stanford University: Whole-Genome Sequencing of the World’s Oldest People. Unfortunately they did not find any longevity genes, and Kim was quoted saying "We were pretty disappointed."There is lots of suggestion that longevity has a genetic component, but I can't help but consider that the environmental component is likely to be stronger, and this would mask the genetics. Kim's study was very small, just 17 genomes, so the […]
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11:24 AM | ECDC Rapid Risk Assessment On H5N8 In Germany
H5N8 – A long way from home   # 9320   The recent, and quite unexpected arrival of avian H5N8 avian influenza at a poultry farm in central Europe (see Germany Reports H5N8 Outbreak in Turkeys) – less than a year after it first emerged on the Korean peninsula -  has set off multiple alarm bells across Europe and Asia.    This Highly pathogenic influenza  virus infected dozens of poultry operations last spring in South Korea, forcing the culling […]
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9:44 AM | Image of the Week: Lung Cancer Cells
This Image of the Week was written by Alice Sheehan. This month is lung cancer awareness month, which aims to raise the profile of one of the world’s biggest cancer killers. Cancer is a condition where cells in a part of the body grow and reproduce uncontrollably. Cancer cells invade healthy tissue disrupting their functions or […]
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8:19 AM | A disease with two faces? Re-naming ME/CFS
Persuasion Smith covers the bases on the misleading and disreputable name for our disease we’ve all been saddled with … If there is one thing that is sure to get ME/CFS sufferers riled up, it is the name of our disease. The very fact that two names are attached to each other, janus-like, almost as if mocking one another seems emblematic of all the controversy surrounding the illness. If only we could just sort out the name, perhaps everything else would fall into place. For […]
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8:03 AM | Why Get A Flu Shot?
Actual discussion: Parent “I want #Ebola vaccine for my child” Doc “There isn’t one, but we have #flushot“ Parent “We don’t believe in that” So much of what we are for at Science-Based Medicine is reflected in what we oppose: all the pseudo-medical interventions and SCAMs. It is not always a positive message, forever noting […]
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5:04 AM | Unlocking Creativity in the Brain
What do elite jazz musicians and freestyle rap artists have in common? Both generate remarkably similar brain activation patterns during improvisations, providing neuroscientists with insight into intricacies of the creative mind. Read more about these studies, and others, in my latest piece with the Society for Neuroscience’s Brain Facts.org, here! Photo credit: Pedro Ribeiro Simões (via Flickr)
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12:56 AM | Pain in Osteoarthritis
Pain is the arguably the most distressing feature of osteoarthritis, affecting patients’ quality of life and ability to carry out daily routines. Why osteoarthritis is sometimes painful and others painless is yet to be explained. Efforts to develop disease-modifying drugs that could, as a consequence of disease reversion, also alleviate pain have not yet been […]

November 13, 2014

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11:19 PM | Ask the Experts: Growing new limbs
A reader sent me the following question: “How does a lizard grow a new tail?” This was a very timely question as new research has shed light on this very phenomenon. A team of experts at Arizona State University led by Dr. Kenro Kusumi and colleagues have been studying limb regeneration in lizards.   The…
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10:18 PM | Hey vaccine deniers–using Hitler’s Big Lie is a laughable strategy
Oh I apologize. I went full-Godwin with the title. In case you don’t know, I’m referring to Godwin’s Law, named after Mike Godwin, who asserted that “as an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1.” In other words, in an online argument, it’s almost a guarantee that someone […]Continue reading «Hey vaccine deniers–using Hitler's Big Lie is a laughable strategy»
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7:10 PM | Join in the Tweets: Pediatricians Use Twitter To Educate Each Other About Human Trafficking
By: Alok Patel, MDEdited by: Sharon E. Chin   The Public Health IssueWhile modern day slavery might be difficult to recognize because victims don't walk around wearing labels that say "currently being trafficked", the sexual exploitation of minors - essentially children pressured or coerced into prostitution - is a growing public healthcrisis, […]
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6:05 PM | An 82-year-old Lying-in mystery
In 1932, a young child sent a handwritten letter asking us to send a baby for $55, but our response was returned undelivered. Can you help us solve this 82-year-old mystery?
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5:41 PM | WHO: Legionnaire’s Disease Outbreak – Portugal
Legionella Bacteria - Photo Credit CDC PHIL # 9319   Over the past few days I’ve noticed a few stories regarding an expanding outbreak of Legionnaire’s Disease in a suburb of Lisbon, Portugal.  Today, based on the rapid growth and unusually large size of the outbreak, the World Health Organization has issued the following Disease Outbreak News report.   Legionnaires' disease – Portugal Disease outbreak news 13 November 2014 On 9 […]
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5:32 PM | Teaching Maternal Fetal Medicine: Medical Problems in Pregnancy
I get an hour to teach Albert Einstein College of Medicine third-year students a formal lecture in obstetrics during their six-week rotations, so I cram in a lot of information during that session. Of course, I spend more time with them informally; we see patients together on labor and delivery, or in clinic at Montefiore [...]
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5:30 PM | Does it even matter if gluten sensitivity is bogus?
This one goes out to all the Americans who are wondering if they really need to make gluten-free stuffing for Thanksgiving. Gluten-free eating is popular; according to one industry trend study, a third of American adults are trying to avoid … Continue reading »The post Does it even matter if gluten sensitivity is bogus? appeared first on Public Health.
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5:01 PM | Japan: H5N8 In Migratory Bird Droppings
Credit U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service   # 9318   The emergence last January of a new Highly Pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza virus in South Korea resulted in the destruction of more than 13 million birds in dozens of farms throughout the Korean peninsula.    Japan saw a brief incursion  last April (see Japan’s Avian Flu Outbreak Identified As H5N8), but forewarned by the Korean outbreak, as able to quickly contain that outbreak. Since then […]
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3:53 PM | Saudi MOH: 2 MERS Cases In Sakaka
# 9317   We’ve reports of a pair of MERS cases in Sakaka (pop. 242,000) , the capital of Al Jawf Province in the north of Saudi Arabia, and an area where we haven’t seen a lot of MERS activity reported previously.    One of the cases is reported in stable condition while the other has died. Neither are HCWs, and we’ve no details regarding onset dates, or possible avenues of infection.   Another fatality, the 70 year-old from Al-Kharj […]
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3:04 PM | Sanford-Burnham presents at the 2014 Society for Neurosience Meeting
2014 Society for Neuroscience Meeting
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2:49 PM | When Mutation Counters Infection: From Sickle Cell to Ebola
 While pharmaceutical companies focus on drug discovery for Ebola virus disease, a powerful clue is coming from a rare “Jewish genetic disease” that destroys the brain. People with Niemann-Pick C1 disease can’t get Ebola, adding to the list of disease … Continue reading »The post When Mutation Counters Infection: From Sickle Cell to Ebola appeared first on DNA Science Blog.
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2:05 PM | EID Journal: Triatoma Human Blood Meals & Potential For Chagas Disease – Louisiana
  # 9316   Last July, in EID Journal: Shelter Dogs as Sentinels for Trypanosoma cruzi – Texas, we looked at a unique seroprevalence study looking for the parasite that causes Chagas disease. Left untreated, this infection can progress to serious chronic conditions over years or decades,  which can include cardiac and intestinal complications.   Recently the CDC listed Chagas as one of five important Neglected Parasitic Infections in the United States. The […]
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1:00 PM | Catholic doctors and priests versus the tetanus vaccine in Kenya
Of the many lies and myths about vaccines that stubbornly persist despite all evidence showing them not only to be untrue but to be risibly, pseudoscientifically untrue, among whose number are myths that vaccines cause autism, sudden infant death syndrome, and a syndrome that so resembles shaken baby syndrome (more correctly called abusive head trauma)…
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