Posts

December 09, 2014

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8:59 PM | CIDRAP Commentary: Sandman & Lanard On Ebola Crisis Communications Lessons
Credit CDC PHIL   # 9426   When it comes to clear-eyed, coherent risk communications, Dr. Peter Sandman & Dr. Jody Lanard are about as good as it gets – which is why their services have been used by corporations, organizations, and agencies around the globe – often in the midst of a crisis. I’ve quite happily featured their writings several times since the Ebola crisis began, including: Sandman & Lanard On Ebola & Failures Of Imagination […]
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5:30 PM | Holiday and Honeymoon Hiatus
There is a lot of interesting science to write about this season, but unfortunately I have been kept mute by a number of obligations. It has been a busy semester teaching (and grading), and the holiday seasons means time with family and/or searching for gifts. More importantly, my pending nuptials have demanded time for preparation; finding the venue, getting the tux, and so forth. Although my loving fiancee handled a majority of the details, much of it was happily done together. Even happier […]
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3:47 PM | One more add-on to brand of New Generation Antimalarials
GreetingsI have previously blogged a few posts on efforts to fight malaria. Malaria has been a longstanding problem in tropics and efforts to control have achieved reasonable success, at least in some parts of the world. As recently noted, there is a growing need for better Anti-malarials (Link). More recently there is a headlines circulating over the web- "A new antimalarial compound". And this post is all about it.Table 1: Drugs in development through MMV The original publication is […]
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1:46 PM | Engaging Students with eMammal
Check out this new video featuring Students Discover Kenan Fellow, Kelsie Armentrout, sharing her experiences about engaging students in science with eMammal camera traps! Inspired by her experience with the North Carolina Environmental Education program, she has continued to implement wildlife-based lessons in her classroom with eMammal. To find out more about becoming a certified North Carolina Environmental Educator, visit their website or watch the video below: Video courtesy of North […]
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1:14 PM | WHO Influenza At The Human-Animal Interface – December Update
WHO December Update # 9425   While Ebola and MERS have garnered much of the infectious disease attention over the past year, in terms of having pandemic potential, novel influenza viruses remain atop the list of viruses of most concern.   Over the past 125 years we’ve seen 6 pandemics arise, all presumably from reassortant avian or swine influenza viruses.   Of the novel viruses circulating in the wild, up until a couple of years ago, the avian H5N1 […]
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11:19 AM | Los Angeles Unveils Earthquake Retrofit & Resilience Plan
Resilient By Design PDF     # 9424   Last December, in Dr. Lucy Jones: `Imagine America Without Los Angeles’, we looked at a presentation given by noted seismologist Dr. Jones at the  annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union (held  in San Francisco),  that emphasized that should the `big one’ hit Southern California, we could literally `lose’ Los Angeles.   Dr. Jones warned that the damage could be far greater, and last […]
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10:18 AM | CFIA Sets Bird Flu Control Zones In BC
Credit Wikipedia – British Columbia   # 9423   Last night CFIA  (the Canadian Food Inspection Agency) outlined new steps to control the spread of the HPAI (Highly Pathogenic) H5N2 virus detected last week at 5 poultry operations in southern British Columbia.      Fully half of the province – everything south of Highway 16 – becomes part of the primary control zone.   Although no new farms have been announced as infected, […]

December 08, 2014

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7:04 PM | Gel Extraction Comb Trick
H/T LabTricks Tweet This Post
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4:27 PM | Salmonella- survival Inside Macrophage; How?
GreetingsIsn't it interesting to know that that there are several regions of interest in research, that I have never talked about? Well considering that there is so much of information out there, this blog timeline is too short to have even covered the part of any. Often I get communications from readers, asking opinion on certain topics and ends with a "You need to blog it". Well the list is growing up, but I enjoy those discussions. Here is one such topic that I felt needs a share- Salmonella […]
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3:40 PM | Saudi King Appoints New MOH Amid Sweeping Changes To Ministries
Saudi Arabia ****  UPDATED ****   # 9422   It was only last April that the long-standing  Minister of Health  Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabiah  was abruptly replaced by Dr. Adel bin Mohammed Faqih (see Saudi Minister Of Health Replaced), presumably over his inability to get control over their growing MERS problem.   Today we’ve word of a massive reshuffling of Cabinet Ministers in Saudi Arabia that includes replacements for the Ministers of Health […]
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3:14 PM | Saudi MOH Reports 1 MERS Case In Najran
  # 9421 Although not as big a focus point for MERS cases as Riyadh or Taif, Najran - near the Yemen border – has reported 1 or 2 cases a month since late in the summer.     The last case we saw reported was 6 days ago (link) – that of a 28 year old ex-pat with `animal exposure’.   Today, the MOH is reporting another case – a 61 year old male in critical condition.   While a source of infection has not been […]
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1:35 PM | BacterioFiles 194 - Squirrel Sequence Stops Similar Sickness
This episode: Remnants of viral infection left behind in squirrels' genome may protect them from incoming viruses! Download Episode (9.3 MB, 10.1 minutes)Show notes:Journal Paper Other interesting stories: Marine photosynthetic bacteria could be good, easy continuous biofuel producers Immune system and gut bacteria have complex interactions What happens to gut community when pathogens infect Bacteria and fungi may lower their defenses when interacting (paper) Parasite from cats could help […]
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1:03 PM | Viral genomes in 700 year old caribou scat
Recovering viral genomes from ancient specimens can provide information about viral evolution, but not many old nucleic acids have been identified. A study of 700 year old caribou feces reveals that viruses can be protected for long periods of time – under the right conditions. The oldest virus recovered so far is the giant Pithovirus sibericum, […]
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9:02 AM | Human Viruses and Cancer
To date, seven viruses have been consistently linked to different types of human cancer, and infections are estimated to account for up to 20% of all cancer cases worldwide. Continue reading →
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4:28 AM | Terminal Proteins: Crossing the Border
by Merry Youle | A variety of Bacteria, Archaea, and mobile genetic elements replicate their DNA as a linear chromosome using terminal proteins (TPs) to prime DNA synthesis, thus solving their end replication problem. As described in an earlier post, phage φ29 uses its TPs to also organize the sites of DNA replication for greater efficiency.

December 07, 2014

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5:22 PM | TWiV 314: Einstein goes viral
On episode #314 of the science show This Week in Virology, Vincent travels to Albert Einstein College of Medicine where he speaks with Kartik, Ganjam, and Margaret about their work on Ebolavirus entry, a tumor suppressor that binds the HIV-1 integrase, and the entry of togaviruses and flaviviruses into cells. You can find TWiV #314 at www.twiv.tv.
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3:53 PM | The Year Of Spreading Dangerously
  # 9420 In addition to providing the usual scourges of malaria, dengue, seasonal influenza, antibiotic resistant bacteria and pneumonia, 2014 has provided us with a number of new, or sometimes simply transplanted, disease threats around the world.     A reminder that in our highly mobile and interconnected world, a disease threat anywhere can easily become a disease threat everywhere.    The tone for the new year was set during the opening days […]
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11:39 AM | Guangdong, China Reports 1 (Fatal) H7N9 Case
Credit Wikipedia   #  9419   For the second time in less than 9 days we are alerted to an H7N9 infection in China’s Guangdong province (see Nov 28’s H7N9 Case In Guangdong Province), this time involving a 66 year old male who died on December 3rd, and diagnosis was only made post mortem via routine testing for the virus among severe respiratory cases.   This brings to 111 the number of cases reported by Guangdong province since the virus first […]
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3:43 AM | Some history of hype regarding the human genome project and genomics
Just taking some notes here - relates to a discussion going on online.  Would love pointers to other references relating to hype and the human genome project (including references that think it was not overhyped).Here are some things I have found:White House press conference on announcing completetion of the human genomeGenome science will have a real impact on all our lives -- and even more, on the lives of our children. It will revolutionize the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of […]

December 06, 2014

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11:35 PM | Foodborne outbreak of streptococcal sore throat in summer camps in Corsica, July 2012
Our French food safety friend, Albert Amgar, sends along the abstract of this unique outbreak: An epidemic of streptococcal tonsillitis (SGA) in camps in children and adolescents was investigated in a camp in Corsica in July 2012. The majority of … Continue reading →
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11:17 PM | Saturday barf: Tiger, football, airplane
It is called barfblog. First up, Tiger Woods doing his best Ben Chapman impersonation on the first tee at his charity tournament — the Hero World Challenge — and he still made birdie. Next, Arizona center Carter Wood vomits just … Continue reading →
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10:55 PM | 9 sickened with E. coli O157 in Oct. 2013 linked to imported cucumbers served at Jimmy John’s in Denver
I’m sure university departmental meetings across the U.S. continue to chomp down on catered Jimmy John’s sandwiches, even though they have a terrible food safety record: 282 sick from Norovirus in Garden City, Kansas, in 2014; 29 sick from E. … Continue reading →
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10:27 PM | 87 now sick with Salmonella from sprouts
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports: As of December 2, 2014, a total of 87 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidis have been reported from 11 states.          Twenty-seven percent of ill persons have … Continue reading →
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10:21 PM | 15 sick from Salmonella in UK outbreak
Fifteen people are believed to have suffered from Salmonella after eating in a Cumbrian town, officials have said. Ten cases of the bug have been confirmed by laboratory tests and there are five probable cases awaiting confirmation. Officials say all those … Continue reading →
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10:13 PM | UK nursery still closed after three youngsters suffer from E. coli O55
A children’s center involved in an E coli investigation remains closed with no date set for its reopening. Blandford Children’s Centre in Black Lane was closed after three children who had visited it suffered from a rare strain of E … Continue reading →
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8:29 PM | Slowing bacteria’s ‘happy dance’ improves food safety
New nanotechnology developed by University of Guelph researchers that stops pathogenic bacteria from doing their happy dance might help improve food safety. In an article published this week in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Lab on a Chip Journal, the … Continue reading →
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2:48 PM | Shanghai Reports H7N9 Case
Credit Wikipedia # 9418     A brief announcement today from the Shanghai Department of Health and Family Planning gives us the bare-bones details on what is their first reported case of H7N9 case of this fall. During the first two waves (spring 2013, winter-spring 2014), Shanghai was the fourth most active region in China, reporting 41 human infections. With more than 24 million people, Shanghai is China’s most populous city, and was one of the first regions […]
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2:21 PM | Egypt: Media Reports 15th H5N1 Case – Toddler In Sohag
Credit Wikipedia   # 9417 There are a number of media stories regarding the testing of  `suspected’ H5N1 cases in Gharbia, and Minya Egypt this morning, and this time of year – with winter’s predictable rise in respiratory viruses – that isn’t unexpected.     No doubt dozens are tested every day during the winter in Egypt, but most end up not being avian flu.    But in the past hour numerous Egyptian media […]
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12:26 PM | ECDC Rapid Risk Assessment: Plague In Madagascar
  # 9416   A couple of weeks ago, in WHO: Plague Returns To Madagascar, we looked at what has become an annual occurrence – a spike in plague cases on that island country of 22 million people.  Plague (Yersinia Pestis) is a bacterial infection transmitted by fleas, carried by infected rats.    The most common presentation is Bubonic plague, however in rare cases, Pneumonic Plague may develop, where the victim develops severe pneumonia and may spread […]
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8:58 AM | Over 300 sickened: State knew Chobani yogurt was tainted months before recall, FDA says
Whether it’s food, automobiles, consumer goods, whatever – selling deficient product and trying to cover it up usually backfires. People and corporations are found out over time: so suck it up and go public early and often. In response to … Continue reading →
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