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Posts

April 06, 2014

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2:57 AM | Over £17Kin fines; mouldy food and filthy conditions at The Thali Indian restaurant shock UK hygiene inspectors
Conditions at a filthy East Yorkshire restaurant have been described as some of the worst that hygiene inspectors had ever seen. Inspectors visiting The Thali Indian restaurant in Pocklington found mouldy food on counters, no soap for workers to wash … Continue reading →
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2:23 AM | Over 100 sick linked to Japanese steakhouse in Michigan
More than 100 cases of gastrointestinal illnesses have been linked to Wild Chef Japanese Steakhouse Grill and Bar, 2863 West Shore Drive in Holland Township. Kristina Wieghmink, spokeswoman for the Ottawa County Department of Public Health, said they pinpointed the … Continue reading →
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2:20 AM | Good reading on the history of the terms/concepts of prokaryote & eukaryote
Preparing for some lectures at UC Davis for Biodiversity and The Tree of Life course and came across this: The Prokaryote-Eukaryote Dichotomy: Meanings and Mythology by Jan Sapp which I had not really scrutinized before.  It is quite good and has lots of information on the history of microbiology and the twisted history of the prokaryote - eukaryote distinction.  Veryvery interesting stuff.  And freely available in Pubmed Central. Thank you thank you thank you Pubmed […]
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1:59 AM | Kids don’t get to choose: more illness with more raw milk in US
An alliance of food activists and anti-regulation libertarians is battling to legalize raw, unpasteurized milk, despite warnings from health officials about the rising toll of illnesses affecting adults and children alike. Kimberly Kindy of The Washington Post writes that as … Continue reading →
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1:46 AM | Medieval poop found: still stinks
I’ve always been a fan of the raspberries. A number of Medieval wooden barrels have been uncovered in Denmark, revealing their less- than-glamorous contents. Originally built to transport goods and store fish, the barrels were converted into latrines — still … Continue reading →

April 05, 2014

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7:42 PM | Egypt: Media Reports Of Another H5N1 Case
  # 8436   Just over two weeks ago (see Watching Egypt Again . . .) the newshounds at FluTrackers picked up several Arabic media reports regarding a pair of H5N1 cases; a 56 years old housewife in Beheira (Damanhur) and a 4 year-old child in Damietta (Annaana).  Six days later the World Health Organization  confirmed those reports here. Today the Arabic media is once again carrying reports (h/t Gert van der Hoek  on this FluTrackers Thread)  of […]
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7:21 PM | bunsenb: Incredible work by Betty Busby
bunsenb: Incredible work by Betty Busby
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7:18 PM | U.S. National Guard and Navy called in to help child suffering from salmonellosis
Dealing with an ill toddler while away from home is stressful; being 900 miles offshore in a wind-powered boat with a kid who has picked up Salmonella is scary. According to NBC San Diego, the California Air National Guard and … Continue reading →
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5:44 PM | It takes a village - and if you are interested in plants - here is one
Continuing to be impressed with PlantVillage. Their mantra isPlantVillage is built on the premise that the all knowledge that helps people grow food should be openly accessible to anyone on the planet. PlantVillage is a user moderated Q & A forum dedicated to the goal of helping people grow their own food. It is an open freely available resource that helps you solve all your plant related questions.I first found out about this when David Hughes was visiting UC Davis a few weeks ago to […]
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1:24 PM | From the low-moisture-foods-with-Salmonella files: black peppercorn edition
Sprouts Farmers Market have, according to a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) press release have recalled some black peppercorn products due to Salmonella after internal testing revealed the bacterial contamination. Sprouts Farmers Market, Inc. (the “Company”) is recalling Organic … Continue reading →
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1:05 PM | The consequences of unsafe home canning are scary
With the first ramps making their way to New York restaurants, the North Carolina spring is here. As the top two-thirds of North America thaws out, the bottom third is gearing up for the home canning season. If done incorrectly … Continue reading →
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10:24 AM | NEJM: Lessons Learned From The 2009 Pandemic
Credit NEJM   # 8435     Although it seems like just yesterday, it’s been nearly five years since we first received word that a new swine-origin H1N1 virus had been identified in both San Diego and Imperial County, California and in San Antonio, Texas (see CDC Issues Outbreak Notice On Swine Flu).  Soon it became apparent that an outbreak had been ongoing for several weeks in Mexico, and early reports suggested a worrisome morbidity and mortality rate.   […]
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9:21 AM | Blogger's Desk- What’s wrong with our science
Greetings      Lately, a few days ago I happened to stumble on an important point regarding “publication of research work”. Several blogs, podcasts, high level meetings, editorials etc.. are now pouring in opinions on how science is not working, the way it is supposed to. I have written on topics of very broad interest in this blog. Things that I have expressed below, is my personal opinion based on what I have found from polling (Link), talking in person to people […]
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8:16 AM | RCT Study on Dientamoeba fragilis in CID
In the string of papers coming out from Dr Dennis Röser’s PhD study on the epidemiology, transmission, and clinical significance of Dientamoeba fragilis, the most recent article was published a few days ago in Clinical Infectious Diseases and available (uncorrected proof) from the journal’s website here. DOI =  10.1093/cid/ciu188. Currently, the full text can be […]
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5:06 AM | Mouse infestation closes birthplace of the cronut
New York City residents and tourists are apparently not alone in their love of Cronuts, those croissant-and-doughnut hybrids that have people lined up for blocks before dawn outside a SoHo bakery. Online video showing a mouse running around in the Dominique … Continue reading →

April 04, 2014

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8:50 PM | Minnesota: Rare Imported Case Of Lassa Fever
Credit CDC’s Lassa Information Page     # 8433   Although its lethality is nowhere in the same league as Ebola Zaire, Lassa fever is another Viral Hemorrhagic Fever (VHF) which is endemic in Western Africa. The Lassa virus is commonly found in multimammate rats, a local rodent that often likes to enter human dwellings.   Exposure is typically through the urine or dried feces of infected rodents, and roughly 80% who are infected only experience mild […]
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6:30 PM | Powering our future with electrigenic bacteria
Trillions of microbes live on us, in us, and around us, quietly sharing our bodies and our cities. But in the future, some microbes may have to work for their real estate. In fact, they may quiet literally become the generators that power our lives. How? By putting them to work inside electricity-generating fuel cells. The concept of…
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6:23 PM | ‘Name-and-shame is a good thing because it gives the public vital information’ South Australia frustrated by legal process
A filthy, cockroach-infested St Peters restaurant fined more than $100,000 has not been added to the State Government’s name-and-shame register, despite being convicted almost two months ago. On February 12, Imperial Peking admitted to 31 counts of breaching the state’s … Continue reading →
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3:30 PM | Before They Were Scientists: Stephanie Schuttler
Dr. Stephanie Schuttler grew up in Buffalo, New York, and went to a middle school that embraced high student achievement. There she wasn’t considered a nerd or picked on for liking conservation or listening to Nirvana. She spent time enjoying “splash hikes” with her family during vacations – putting on old sneakers and hiking up a streambed instead of a trail. It was her parents’ love of nature that eventually led her down the path towards biology. Read on to learn […]
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2:58 PM | HK CHP Investigating 8th Imported H7N9 Case
  H7N9 Awareness Campaign Summer 2013 - Photo credit Hong Kong’s CHP   # 8432 Despite the recent slow down in reported cases from the mainland, we continue to see the occasional H7N9 case show up in Hong Kong, as is reported today by their Centre For Health Protection.    In this case, it is a 65-year old man who fell in in Shenzhen on March 31st, after purchasing pigeons at a wet market, and who subsequently traveled to Hong Kong on April 3rd. […]
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12:48 PM | Britian Aims to Become World Leader in Synthetic Biology
Scientists at the University of Liverpool have been awarded £2M to build a state-of-the-art DNA synthesis facility, a capability offering much needed tools for genome engineering to the academic and private sectors. This facility, named GeneMill will be part of the UK’s focus on synthetic biology, identified by the Government as one of the ‘Eight [...]
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12:45 PM | Referral: VDU Blog- Can we believe every H7N9 seroprevalence study we see?
  # 8431   While Dr. Ian Mackay is taking a well deserved (but hopefully brief) blogging break, guest blogger @influenza_bio has penned an absolutely terrific piece on how seroprevalence studies are conducted, and how they can sometimes go wrong.  I’ll not spoil this beyond saying that - not only do I now know a whole lot more about seroprevalence studies than ever before -  I’ve converted this essay into a PDF file, and it now sits on my desktop […]
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12:10 PM | WHO/AFRO: Responding To Public Health Events Of Unknown Etiology
Public Health Events in 2012 – Credit WHO/AFRO     # 8430   As recent events in Guinea and Western Africa illustrate, we often hear about `mysterious’ outbreaks of unknown etiology in remote areas of the world days or weeks before an official diagnosis can be made.  It takes time, and most importantly – a coordinated response - to identify and contain an infectious disease outbreak.   To that end the World Health Organization and The WHO […]
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11:13 AM | PLoS Pathogens: Fitness Advantage From Permissive NA Mutations In Oseltamivir Resistant pH1N1
    # 8429   Hopefully today’s blog won’t be as tedious as the title might first suggest.   Oseltamivir (aka Tamiflu ®) – an NAI (Neuraminidase Inhibiting) antiviral drug – is our primary pharmaceutical weapon against influenza.   While it doesn’t `cure’  the flu - when started early enough (preferentially within 48 hrs of onset of symptoms) - it can reduce both the severity and duration of infection (see […]
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5:10 AM | Medical photography, Dorothea Lange style
There are six illustrations in this paper. The first two show the layout of the sinuses. The other four are haunting. From M.H. Gill (1906), Diseases of the Maxillary Sinus, Yale Medical Journal XII(9):821-829: — — — — These people (three adult men with abscesses and “a female aged ten” with cancer) got sick and […]
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1:34 AM | 12 possibly sick with E. coli at Oklahoma State Fairgrounds; all worked with livestock
The State Health Department said that they are working on 12 cases of possible E. coli cases. They said 8 of them were at the Youth Expo, but some of the other 4 may not have been there. They are … Continue reading →
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12:54 AM | 17 now sick with Salmonella from Welsh laverbread outbreak
Five new cases of Salmonella with possible links to laverbread have emerged in the past week bringing the total number to 17, said Public Health Wales. Tests are continuing to confirm whether they are all linked to the outbreak, which … Continue reading →
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12:49 AM | And it was all avoidable: seven businesses in Ireland closed over food hygiene
Seven food businesses were closed across the country last month for breaches of food safety legislation, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland has confirmed. Professor Alan Reilly, chief executive of the FSAI, stated that there is absolutely no excuse for … Continue reading →
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12:43 AM | Of course food safety is your top priority; dancing rats at Manhattan Dunkin’ Donuts
Oh iPhone cameras and youtube.com; how do I love thee? And Dunkin’ Donuts, you’re no Tim Hortons. Two videos uploaded to YouTube on Tuesday show rats crawling around a New York City Dunkin’ Donuts location in the Garmnet District. In the … Continue reading →
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12:41 AM | Retroviruses R us
About eight percent of human DNA is viral – remnants of ancestral infections with retroviruses. These endogenous retroviral sequences do not produce infectious viruses, and most are considered to be junk DNA. But some of them provide important functions. The protein called syncytin, which is essential for formation of the placenta, originally came to the […]
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