Posts

January 28, 2015

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3:52 PM | Storify, wrap up of talk by Shirley Tilghman, ex president of #Princeton, at #UCDavis
Shirley Tilghman, ex president of Princeton, gave a talk at UC Davis yesterday as part of the Chencellor's Colloquium. I live Tweeted the talk and made a Storify of some of the Tweets and responses. Here it is [View the story "Talk by Shirley Tilghman, ex president of Princeton, at #UCDavis " on Storify] -------- This is from the "Tree of Life Blog" of Jonathan Eisen, an evolutionary biologist and Open Access advocate at the University of California, Davis. For short updates, follow me on […]
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2:35 PM | HK CHP Notified Of H5N1 Case In Jiangsu Province
Credit Wikipedia   # 9638   Although likely undercounted, China has only reported 9 H5N1 cases to the World Health Organization over the past five years.  H5N1 outbreaks are occasionally reported in China’s poultry, but H7N9, H10N8, and the upstart H5N6 virus have been viewed with more urgency the past couple of years.   As illustrated by its sudden resurgence in Egypt this winter, H5N1 remains a legitimate threat, and one should never ignore its ability to […]
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1:56 PM | EID Journal: H7N9 Antibodies In Close Contacts Of Known Cases
# 9637   Two big questions we always ask when we see human infections with novel viruses are 1) How easily is it transmitted to others?  and  2) What is the spectrum of illness produced by infection?    While seemingly simple and straightforward questions, answering them isn’t easy.    Most human infections with MERS-CoV, or Avian Flu (H5N1, H7N9, H10N8, etc.) look very much like any other respiratory infection – except that they […]
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10:54 AM | Guangdong Province: Two More H7N9 Cases
Credit Wikipedia   # 9636 Guangdong Province’s two-a-day streak continues with their announcement (for the 6th day in a row) of two more H7N9 cases.  First the announcement from the Guangdong Ministry of Health and Family Planning, followed by Hong Kong’s CHP summary.   Meizhou, Heyuan City, one case of H7N9 cases were reported 2015-01-28 16:28:38   Ministry of Health and Family Planning  | Health and Family Planning Commission of […]
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6:34 AM | And fined, again: Owner of UK restaurant banned from running food businesses after premises found to be dirty for third time
A restauranteur has been barred from running any food business after he was convicted of running a dirty Chinese restaurant for the third time in 11 years. Shek Kwok, of Parker Road, Colchester, had admitted seven offences relating to the … Continue reading →
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4:20 AM | Is that all there is? Norovirus suspected by Nebraska health department
The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department is investigating an incidence of what it suspects is norovirus. Details of who may have the highly contagious disease, where and how it was reported were not available from the department.  “We have an ongoing … Continue reading →
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3:43 AM | FDA investigating after nails found inside candy in Tennessee
The FDA has launched an investigation to determine who is tampering with candy at a Perry County convenience store. Last November, three people reported finding nails inside Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups at Fat Man’s in Perry County. Now, investigators said … Continue reading →
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3:09 AM | 2 dead, 3 sick from Listeria in Wholesome (?) Soy bean sprouts (final update)
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control reports that on November 7, 2014, Wholesome Soy Products Inc. of Chicago, Ill., agreed to close their facility and to cease production and distribution of sprouts. The facility is no longer in production. Sprouts … Continue reading →
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1:04 AM | Farming science, without the conscience
Following an account by Michael Moss in the N.Y. Times last week, a Times editorial says the little-known U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, financed by American taxpayers, which employs the sophisticated tools and scientific expertise of modern animal management — … Continue reading →
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12:59 AM | Salmonella and raw leafy greens most dangerous according to EU risk assessment model
Foods of non-animal origin (FoNAO) are consumed in a variety of forms, being a major component of almost all meals. These food types have the potential to be associated with large outbreaks as seen in 2011 associated with VTEC O104. … Continue reading →

January 27, 2015

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11:46 PM | Marler gets his New Yorker profile
Late one night in September of 2013, Rick Schiller awoke in bed with his right leg throbbing. Schiller, who is in his fifties, lives in San Jose, California. He had been feeling ill all week, and, as he reached under … Continue reading →
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11:34 PM | How about disclosure? Wisconsin restaurants support new food safety standards
Ed Lump, president and CEO of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association, writes in the LaCrosse Tribune that to say food safety in restaurants and other food outlets is important is an understatement. However, the public doesn’t hear much about it unless … Continue reading →
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7:49 PM | Egyptian Media Reports Additional H5N1 Cases & Deaths
  # 9635   The last Egyptian Ministry of Health H5N1 update that included YTD totals (number of cases, recoveries, under treatment & deaths) was posted last Thursday (see Egypt’s MOH Confirms 21st H5N1 Case), and at that time they acknowledged 21 cases (8 cases of healing, 7 cases under treatment, and 6 deaths). Since then we’ve seen numerous media reports of additional cases, but only one  report (see HERE), describing 2 new cases has been posted […]
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5:07 PM | A Heart-to-Heart with Rob Dunn
We’re excited for the upcoming release of Rob Dunn‘s new book, The Man Who Touched His Own Heart, on February 3! After taking on the parasites, microbes, mutualists and predators that shape our human selves in his last book, The Wild Life of Our Bodies, Rob has moved on to explore the history and science of our most vital organ, the heart. Get a sneak preview of the book in this Q & A: Interviewer: I’d like to ask you more about the story behind the story of your heart […]
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3:26 PM | Guangdong Province Reports 2 More H7N9 Cases
Credit Wikipedia   # 9634   Although we aren’t hearing much of anything out of China’s other provinces  Guangdong Province – perhaps because of it’s proximity and close relationship with Hong Kong – continues to update their Ministry of Health website almost daily with new H7N9 cases.  Today, for the fifth day in a row, Guangdong is reporting two new cases (hat tip Sharon Sanders on FluTrackers).   Shenzhen, Meizhou City […]
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1:21 PM | Referral: VDU On Societal Change And H7N9
H7N9 Waves – Credit Dr. Ian Mackay VDU Blog   # 9633   With H7N9 surging once again in China (although how badly, is hard to tell), and H5N1 setting `personal best’ records in Egypt this winter, bird flu is back with a vengeance, and we once again find ourselves collectively playing `chicken’ with some very nasty avian threats.     And if that weren’t enough, in the wings (and legs, breasts, and thighs) are upstarts like H10N8 […]
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11:59 AM | Media Reports: Bird Flu In Bulgaria
  *** UPDATED: ***  0900 hrs At least 1 media report now identifies the subtype as H5N1 We have taken measure along Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast over bird flu: doctor # 9632   The Bulgarian Ministry of Agriculture & Food website remains silent, and nothing has appeared yet on the OIE Alerts page, but the Bulgarian press is rife this morning with reports of the discovery of bird flu (subtype not named) in a dead pelican in or near the Poda Protected […]
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6:53 AM | Surveys still suck: Consumer-reported handling of raw poultry products at home
Salmonella and Campylobacter cause an estimated combined total of 1.8 million foodborne infections each year in the United States. Most cases of salmonellosis and campylobacteriosis are associated with eating raw or undercooked poultry or with cross-contamination. Between 1998 and 2008, … Continue reading →
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6:28 AM | Placental breach mechanism for Listeria revealed
The host blood-brain and placental barriers act as critical ramparts to infections from microbial pathogens, yet some have evolved mechanisms to breach the cellular obstacles that lie in their path. Unlocking the underlying mechanisms of host barrier permissiveness to microbes … Continue reading →
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5:10 AM | Abracadabra!
Abracadabra! Many of us are familiar with this mystical incantation. Its arcane staccato and euphonious intonation has become deeply ingrained in our language through the word’s use as a magical catchphrase. The hex was, in my childhood experience, rather useless when it came to opening locked cabinets and provoking instantaneous transformations; nothing was conjured and very little materialized except for my own disappointment. But millennia past, this word was held in reverence, […]
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5:10 AM | Abracadabra!
Abracadabra! Many of us are familiar with this mystical incantation. Its arcane staccato and euphonious intonation has become deeply ingrained in our language through the word’s use as a magical catchphrase. The hex was, in my childhood experience, rather useless when it came to opening locked cabinets and provoking instantaneous transformations; nothing was conjured and very little materialized except for my own disappointment. But millennia past, this word was held in reverence, […]
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12:25 AM | Which cut of meat is least likely to make you sick?
I like Schaffner’s response: There is no such thing as risk-free meat, or risk-free food in general. Donald Schaffner, a professor of food microbiology at Rutgers University, told Kiera Butler of Mother Jones that if the food isn’t cooked sufficiently, … Continue reading →
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12:06 AM | Rat spotted in Florida restaurant window
People walking by couldn’t believe their eyes when they saw a rat in the window of Stix Oriental in the Plantation Promenade. video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

January 26, 2015

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11:55 PM | 115 sickened: Multistate outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis infections linked to bean sprouts (Final update)
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control reports this outbreak appears to be over. A total of 115 people infected with the outbreak strains of Salmonella Enteritidis were reported from 12 states. Twenty-five percent of ill persons were hospitalized. No deaths … Continue reading →
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11:21 PM | Way to go, Paul
Growing up in Port Hope, Ontario (that’s in Canada), there were a bunch of Pauls.
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10:21 PM | I’m all for food hubs but food safety needs to be on the menu
As Ashley Chaifetz, public policy student at UNC-Chapel Hill wraps up her research on food pantries her data shows really passionate individuals (largely volunteer) who work within a food distribution system that’s not all that systematic or formal when it comes to food safety training. Kind of … Continue reading →
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8:25 PM | PHAC Statement On Canada’s Imported H7N9 Case
Photo Credit- CDC   # 9631   In a case smacking of deja flu - just over a year after North America’s first imported case of H5N1 (in a traveler recently returned from China) - we learn of our first imported case of H7N9, this time in the Vancouver area.   Crof has a report from the Globe and Mail (see Canada: BC resident confirmed with H7N9; relative may be a second case),  and Helen Branswell has a little bit more in her report Canada finds case of H7N9 bird […]
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5:28 PM | Fine dive
Ashley Chaifetz, a PhD student studying public policy at UNC-Chapel Hill writes: As a food policy doctoral student, I pay special attention to articles on food waste and its prevention—which includes dumpster diving. This activity is at the intersection of policies … Continue reading →
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5:21 PM | And so it goes: Marj’s closes following hepatitis A exposure event
When a restaurant’s food safety practices are called into question isn’t usually good business. The restaurant industry isn’t the most stable at the best of times. Anecdotally, vocal and passionate community members support a local diner or meeting place, even after illnesses; but … Continue reading →
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5:05 PM | Bakery owner: It’s easy to follow the rules; good food safety is about staff who care
Employing good food safety at retail is a combination of folks identifying risks and putting in mitigation steps to address them. The rub is that you need to cultivate a good staff who values the stuff that keeps patrons from … Continue reading →
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