Posts

February 14, 2015

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9:39 AM | Marijuana Causes Narcolepsy Symptoms
ByThe Toombst In a recent retrospective study researchers find that using marijuana causes narcolepsy symptoms in adolescents. Marijuana is currently on a legalization upswing around the world. This have led to intensified efforts in research investigating marijuana’s effect on health. Earlier research have found that the drug causes changes in the brains’ of users and a more sluggish response from the brain’s reward system. Now new research from Nationwide Children’s […]
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9:00 AM | News digest – hormone replacement therapy, cancer screening, ‘breath-sniffing’ smartphone app and more
HRT and ovarian cancer risk, what people say and do when it comes to screening and is there really a ‘breath-sniffing’ smartphone app to diagnose cancer?

February 13, 2015

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9:38 PM | Removing Barriers to Breast Cancer Care
I overheard a breast cancer patient once say: There is only one thing worse than having cancer – not being able to afford it. Sobering. Financial cost remains a barrier to cancer screenings - let alone cancer treatment - among lower income women. While multiple factors contribute to racial and...
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5:47 PM | Biotech Tweets of the Week (February 9-13, 2015)
I hope everyone enjoys their Valentine's Day and or blizzard this weekend. Here is the latest batch of the best biotech-related content on Twitter. Thanks as always to @23aloha for collecting most of these!Featuring: $GILD $MNKD $ESPR $GENE $IDRA $QURE $CEMP $ACAD $MEIP $BLUE $OTIC $ABBV $OPK [...]
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4:03 PM | Saudi MOH: 8 More MERS Cases
      # 9709 The abrupt escalation in MERS cases continues today with 8 more announced by the Saudi MOH, bringing our three day total to 20 and our February total to 32.    MERS appears to be off to an earlier start this year. Less than halfway through the month of February, and we have already far exceeded last year’s total for the month.   Four cases are linked to nosocomial exposure, while two others are under investigation.  One […]
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3:03 PM | Philippines: 11 Contacts Of MERS Case Symptomatic, Undergoing Tests
  # 9708   With the strong caveat that this time of year respiratory symptoms are rampant,  Xinhua and Reuters are both reporting that 11 contacts of the Filipino nurse who returned from KSA with MERS are under quarantine and  are `symptomatic’.   At this time, none have tested positive for the coronavirus.    That said, here are both reports. Eleven people linked to Philippines MERS case show symptoms: WHO By Tom Miles […]
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2:48 PM | Radio – it’s a powerful medium, but can it save lives?
Radio – the ‘theatre of the mind’ – entertains, informs and can transport us to different worlds through powerful storytelling brought to us via the airwaves. Today, on World Radio Day, Senior Portfolio Developer Marta Tufet looks at how Wellcome Trust funded researchers are trying to determine whether radio might be even more powerful than […]
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2:31 PM | ECDC: Rapid Risk Assessment On LPAI H7N7
# 9707   Up until two years ago, human infection with H7 avian viruses were both rare, and almost always mild.  Often little more than mild `flu-like’ symptoms and/or conjunctivitis.    The one notable exception occurred in 2003 when a largest known outbreak of H7N7 infected 89 people, one of whom died (see Eurosurveillance Journal Human-to-human transmission of avian influenza A/H7N7, The Netherlands, 2003). When H7N9 showed up unexpectedly in […]
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2:00 PM | Alternative Medical Alert Systems in the News
Belvidere, NE- Bref Albright was taking an unfamiliar route home from work because of a stalled 18-wheeler when he passed by the cell phone tower. As the electromagnetic field washed over him, symptoms of his sensitivity quickly set in. He first noticed a tingling sensation throughout his body and an odd dryness in his mouth […]
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1:45 PM | The annals of “I’m not antivaccine,” part 14: Vaccine “Trafficking” and beyond
If there’s one good thing about the ongoing Disneyland measles outbreak that is continuing to spread, if there can be a “good thing” about an outbreak of vaccine-preventable disease that didn’t have to happen, it’s that it’s put the antivaccine movement on the defensive. They are definitely feeling the heat. Their reaction to that heat…
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1:10 PM | Darwin Was Not Wrong Day
Yesterday was February 12th, the birthday of Charles Darwin, who introduced (along with Alfred Wallace) the theory of evolution to the world. Darwin remains one of the most famous scientists to have ever lived, and his life’s work was truly a staggering accomplishment. There has been an increasing movement to make February 12th Darwin Day [...]
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12:43 PM | An H9N2 Infection In Egypt & Updated H5N1 Count – FAO/EMPRES
# 9707   We’ve news of a human H9N2 infection in Aswan, as well as a bit of confirmation of our H5N1 count for Egypt this year, courtesy of the latest FAO/EMPRES Animal Influenza Update # 636  and a head’s up overnight to FluTrackers and myself by @nlintelligence  (see FluTrackers post)   First the H9N2 case, which is described as:   10/02/2015 – H9N2 infection in a human, Aswan Source: National Authorities On 10 […]
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12:00 PM | When Does Collecting Become A Compulsion?
For some, collecting things is a harmless way to spend time and introduce a healthy, harmless diversion into our lives. Meanwhile, for others, collecting can take a turn toward the tragic. The purpose of science is to help us make sense of the world around us — or the much larger world inside our heads. […]
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11:28 AM | HK CHP Notified Of 4 More H7N9 Cases In Guangdong
  # 9706   Considering that Guangdong province didn’t report a single case of H7N9 during the initial spring 2013 wave, it is worth noting that today they’ve taken the (perhaps, temporary) lead  from Zhejiang Province in the number of cases they’ve reported (161) since the emergence of the H7N9 virus.    In fairness, Zhejiang province has not been nearly as timely in their reporting of cases this year, and so their actual count on any given […]
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8:24 AM | How Toxic Proteins Kill Brain Cells and How to Stop it
ByThe Toombst A discovery detailing how misfolded toxic proteins kill brain cells might lead to new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and prion diseases. Neurodegenerative diseases are diseases that affects and kills neurons in the brain. The death of these brain cells causes a loss of function that varies with the disease sometimes leading to death. Some neurodegenerative diseases, like prion diseases or Alzheimer’s, are caused by […]
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7:30 AM | Image of the Week: Under Your Skin – Creutzfeldt-Jakob
This week sees the opening of ‘History is Now: 7 artists take on Britain’ at the Hayward Gallery, featuring the first ever art exhibition to explore the BSE crisis and how it affected the UK in the 1990s – and ever since. One of the images featured in the exhibition is by Laurène Pijulet-Balmer, an […]
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5:09 AM | Whose DNA is that?
Dr. Christopher Mason (Weill Cornell Medical College, Manhatten, NY) decided to sequence DNA found in NY subway stations…468 of them to be precise. At each station, his research team collected DNA samples by swabbing the kiosks, turnstiles, benches, railings, trash cans as well as the subway cars. Along with finding abundant Pseudomonas bacteria (also found…
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4:01 AM | Is there any supplement in your supplement?
Most of us are fortunate to live in countries where we don’t have to worry about counterfeit drugs. We can be confident that the prescriptions we receive, or the drugs we purchase from the pharmacy, are of high quality and contain exactly what’s on the label. But in these same countries, there’s another group of […]
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1:43 AM | Science of Sleep: Sleep Debt Changes Metabolism
ByThe Toombst New research finds that sleep debt changes our metabolism. In both people and rats subjected to chronic sleep deprivation researchers could find markers of “tiredness” in blood samples. Sleep, we all need it. Lack of sleep is known to increase the risk of some diseases like heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Though we know much about sleep, researchers still don’t have a clear idea of how sleep debt affects the body’s systems increasing the risk of some […]

February 12, 2015

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8:08 PM | Saudi MOH Announces 7 More MERS Cases
    # 9705 With a 2-day total of 12 cases, we are seeing a significant spike in MERS cases in Saudi Arabia, and like yesterday,  today’s cases are widely scattered across the Kingdom.    None of today’s cases are listed as HCWs, while two have apparent exposure to camels.  The other 5 cases have no known exposure cited.   Without onset dates it is difficult to gauge how dramatic this increase really is, as some of these cases […]
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7:22 PM | Earliest-known arboreal and subterranean ancestral mammals discovered
Teams led by Zhe-Xi Luo, PhD, professor of organismal biology and anatomy, have discovered two 160 million-year-old fossils in China that represent the earliest-known arborial and subterannean mammals. Their findings suggest widespread ecological diversity among the earliest mammals, and also hints of genetic parallels to modern mammals.
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7:18 PM | Saudi MOH: New MERS Awareness Video PSAs
    # 9704   Over the next few weeks and months the Saudi MOH – under new leadership (see December’s Saudi King Appoints New MOH Amid Sweeping Changes To Ministries) – is expected to have to deal with another spring wave of the MERS coronavirus.     And if it is anything like last year, it could be a very busy few months.   Already this week we are seeing signs of an uptick in cases (5 yesterday) and an exported case to the […]
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5:28 PM | In the Bleak Midwinter
As I write this, it’s snowing here in Worcester, Massachusetts. If you’re not up-to-speed on the “Golden Snow Globe National Snow Contest Snowiest U.S. Cities” rankings, you’ve missed out on the story about my snowy city’s great claim to fame this season… We’re Number 1! 92+ inches and counting. Many folks are tired of it, but […]
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4:17 PM | Hijacked! A new form of predatory publishing
The rise of predatory open-access publishing is well documented. These charlatans will take your money and publish literally anything you submit (most famous example here). Today I learned of a relatively new form of predatory publishing, the wholesale hijacking of a journal’s identity. See below for the text of an email soliciting articles for the Journal of Clinical Microbiology (JCM)—except the sender has no affiliation with JCM, the website is not the JCM website, etc. […]
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4:08 PM | From defining death to allocating organs: UChicago professor co-authors book on ethics of organ transplantation
The second edition of Transplantation Ethics, by UChicago ethicist Lainie Ross and Georgetown's Robert Veatch tackles everything from face transplants to what qualifies a person as dead in order to begin the organ procurement process.
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3:53 PM | Would Charles Darwin Have Used Tinder?
In honor of Charles Darwin’s birthday today, and VD (Valentine’s Day) looming, I’m thinking about how we choose partners. A mobile dating app called Tinder, it turns out, seems to echo sexual selection, Darwin’s idea expounded in The Descent of … Continue reading »The post Would Charles Darwin Have Used Tinder? appeared first on DNA Science Blog.
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3:40 PM | Kickstarter Launched for Bea The Film, a Documentary About Hugh Rienhoff’s Daughter - Bio-IT World
Kickstarter Launched for Bea The Film, a Documentary About Hugh Rienhoff’s Daughter - Bio-IT World
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3:39 PM | Recognizing Humanism in Medical Education                             
No one else I encountered during my third year of medical school at Albert Einstein College of Medicine struck me quite like this patient. He was propped up in the hospital bed, gasping impossibly for air, with not a hint of relief in sight. A harrowing whistle of pain escaped his lips and wove its [...]
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3:38 PM | EID Journal: Post Mortem Stability Of The Ebola Virus
Credit CDC PHIL   # 9703 By now everyone probably knows that one of the prime routes of transmission of the Ebola virus in West Africa came from direct contact during funeral rites with the bodies of the dead. We know from experience that after a person dies from the disease, the body can remain infectious for some time. The question, not well answered until now, has been for how long?   Today the EID Journal has at least a partial answer, by way of experiments […]
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3:10 PM | Megaproyectos genómicos
Did you say millions of genomes?http://blog.oup.com/2015/02/millions-genomes-project/Genomics Englandhttp://www.genomicsengland.co.uk/
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