Posts

August 08, 2014

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3:19 PM | NICE and Roche at loggerheads (again)
  NICE has today (8th August 2014) announced that it cannot recommend Roche’s latest breast cancer drug, Kadcyla (a combination of trastuzumab and emtansine) for routine use on the NHS because it is too expensive and hence not cost-effective.  The draft ‘no’ was actually published in May, but there has been a press release issued today ...read more
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1:24 PM | Mothers’ DHA Omega-3 Levels Affect Infant Developmental Outcomes
Earlier this week, we wrote about how the omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids EPA and DHA are important for cardiovascular health. The evidence base for omega-3 and heart health is strong enough to allow a qualified health claim in the USA and article 13 health claims in the EU. But these healthy fats are also important in other health areas. In particular, DHA is important for the normal development and function of the infant brain, nervous system and eyesight. Maintaining adequate levels of […]
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10:01 AM | Does pay for performance work or doesn’t it?
Martin Roland discusses the effects of pay for performance, following on from our study published in the New England Journal of Medicine this week.
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9:15 AM | A different look at HIV transmission
Did you see the DN2 cover story in yesterday’s (5th August 2014) Daily Nation ? It was about the risk of HIV spreading from the homosexual to heterosexual world by bisexuals. The three men interviewed (Elly, Otieno and Evans) have sex with men to make money while having a girlfriend on the side. http://mobile.nation.co.ke/lifestyle/Bisexuality-gay-HIV-Aids-Jennifer-Wambua/-/1950774/2408034/-/format/xhtml/-/hy1jpu/-/index.html In […]
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9:08 AM | Hantavirus in North Dakota
Earlier this summer, it was reported by the North Dakota State Health Department that a case of Hantavirus Pulmonary Disease resulted in the death of an infected adult.Hantavirus disease transmission cycleIt is the first case of the disease since 2009 and only 12 cases have been reported to the state health department since 1993. There have been seven total recorded deaths in North Dakota including the most current this year. If you have questions, use the comments section below!I am honestly […]
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8:11 AM | 63 in Europe sickened; Salmonella in watermelon from Brazil, 2011
In November 2011, the presence of Salmonella Newport in a ready-to-eat watermelon slice was confirmed as part of a local food survey in England. In late December 2011, cases of S. Newport were reported in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland, … Continue reading →
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8:00 AM | Cryptosporidium confirmed at Florida water park
The Pinellas County Department of Health has notified the City of Tarpon Springs that they have received three confirmed cases of cryptosporidium in which the patients had been at the Tarpon Springs Splash Park during the incubation period. All three … Continue reading →

August 07, 2014

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11:32 PM | Snake oil: Whole Foods Market still peddling hucksterism
There is no definition for natural foods in the U.S. Yet, Whole Foods applies the label to so many products, it is close to meaningless. Alan McHughen, a botanist at the University of California, Riverside, told The Economist that the … Continue reading →
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11:29 PM | Early use of the term ‘malaria’
Early use of the term ‘malaria’ I was reading Robert Sallares’ Malaria and Rome this evening and I noticed some information on the earliest use of the term ‘malaria’ that I thought would be worth sharing. As we have all learned, malaria comes from the Italian mal’ aria, meaning ‘bad air’. A few other interesting facts: […]
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11:07 PM | Pork neck slices tested positive for Listeria in Macedonia
Sample of smoked pork neck slices produced by Kumanovo company with the name of “Extra Mein” has been tested positive forLlisteria bacteria, Macedonia’s Commission for Infectious Diseases of Macedonian Ministry of Health released on Wednesday. This listeria bacteria found in … Continue reading →
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10:53 PM | Traces of Norovirus found in Finish patients’ tests
The first laboratory tests of fecal samples from individuals who went swimming around Tampere have yielded signs that the virus remains present in local waterways.   Patient specimens were obtained from a total of 18 people, 15 of whose tests … Continue reading →
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7:40 PM | Ebola and ZMapp...A scientist explains
Erica Ollman Saphire (lab website, PubMed, RePORTER) was interviewed on KPBS in San Diego about the use of highly experimental antibody therapy for the US health workers infected with Ebola virus. It's a pretty interesting viewpoint on basic science, translation to humans and what we do when an emergency situation like an infectious disease outbreak […]
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5:10 PM | Not an “accident”: Stanley Thomas Wright, 47, suffers work-related aspyxiation at railyard in North Las Vegas
This week’s snapshot of just one work-related fatality. This one occurred on August 2 at a railyard in North Las Vegas, Nevada.
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4:52 PM | A historical perspective on Ebola response and prevention
Yambuku, Zaire, 1976. A new disease was spreading through the population. Patients were overcome by headaches and bloody diarrhea. The disease was spreading through entire families and wiping them out. Eight hundred and twenty-five kilometers to the northeast, a similar epidemic was reportedly raging across the border in Maridi, Sudan. Were these outbreaks connected? Despite…
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4:35 PM | There is no "filter problem" in science
Seriously. It is your job as a scientist to read the literature, keep abreast of findings of interest and integrate this knowledge with your own work. We have amazing tools for doing so that were not available in times past, everything gets fantastically better all the time. If you are a PI you even have […]
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3:37 PM | Hardened against Antioxidant Vitamin Supplements? Maybe you should Reconsider
WebMD defines antioxidants as ‘man-made or natural substances that may prevent or delay some types of cell damage. Antioxidants are found in many foods, including fruits and vegetables. They are also available as dietary supplements.’ The antioxidant vitamins are: C, A, E and β-carotene.  Yesterday’s blog shared CDC data reporting a marginal trending increase in fruit consumption  but no change in vegetable intake among adolescents. What is the impact of not […]
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3:03 PM | Chewing on a Farm-to-Table Dilemma
In my pediatric nutrition practice, I often preach about getting more fruits and vegetables into the diets of the children I see at the Nutrition Clinic of Einstein’s Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center. Eating more vegetables is a proven way to fight obesity and promote better health. Sometimes the question of where and how to [...]
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12:00 PM | Why Don't People Intervene in Domestic Violence?
An article published recently in Psychology of Violence is a first attempt to manipulate group norms and assess their impact on willingness to help victims of intimate partner violence. Two studies were conducted, the first involving 218 undergraduates who read...            Related StoriesWhat is a Child Abuser?Secondary Trauma in Child Protection WorkersDoes Walking Speed Predict Dementia? 
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10:56 AM | Medicalising life
Medicines have been getting into the mainstream news quite a lot in recent times. A couple of days ago saw the publication in Annals of Oncology of a review of the evidence for a protective effect of aspirin in reducing cancer in the general population. The role of aspirin in cardiovascular disease prevention is well ...read more
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4:59 AM | Review finds glass ionomer had lowest annual failure rate in non-carious cervical lesions
Non-carious cervical lesions (NCCLs) are saucer or wedge-shaped defects that appear along the cementum-enamel junction as a result of gradual loss of dental tissues in the absence of caries. Their aetiology has not been fully clarified. NCCLs are restored using adhesive materials glass-ionomers and their resin-modified version, poly-acid modified composites (known as ‘compomers’), composite and [read the full story...]

August 06, 2014

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11:28 PM | FDA agent: Peanut plant ‘not fit’ to produce food
So why was this only discovered after the outbreak that killed nine and sickened 700 with Salmonella? A federal food safety inspector who investigated a deadly Salmonella outbreak linked to a Georgia peanut plant says the company was “not fit … Continue reading →
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10:03 PM | Two Ohioans hospitalized with botulism
Almost always resulting in some form of paralysis (and then hospitalization), botulism is one of the scariest foodborne illnesses out there. It’s why I’m super careful with the canning I do at home and pay attention to storage of low-acid … Continue reading →
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9:44 PM | Pittsburgh restaurant fined for obscuring inspection placard
A couple of years ago a colleague at the vet college shared a story with me about restaurant grades. He and his son went into a local sushi place and it was dead – they had no problem getting a … Continue reading →
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9:40 PM | Study: Trees save 850 lives every year, prevent thousands of health complications (seriously!)
Next time you pass a tree, you might want to give it a second thought. Maybe even a hug. One day, that tree might just help save your life.
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9:27 PM | Pay attention, be the goalie: Texas A&M Center for Food Safety
I have a drill I do weekly with the goalies at hockey practice. I’ll have three of them, each in front of a net, and I tell them, pay attention, you never know where I’m going to shoot the puck … Continue reading →
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7:48 PM | Fruits and veggies are best: What happens if nobody eats them?
Most people understand that fruits and vegetables are the cornerstone to a healthy diet yet the overwhelming majority of the population falls short of the recommended 5+ servings per day. Coming off the heels of a recent report that most children eat a serving of fruit daily, the CDC released new trend data on fruit consumption among children between 2003-2004 and 2009-2010. The result: fruit intake among children increased from 0.55 to 0.62 cup equivalents (aka, servings) per 1000 calories […]
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4:37 PM | Addressing more Ebola myths
For several days now, people have been quoting The Hot Zone* at me as a realistic account of an Ebola outbreak. Just…no. I have an article up today at mic.com addressing this and some more Ebola myths: Everything you know about Ebola is wrong.   *Entertaining as hell, but very over-dramatized.
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6:09 AM | 8 sick? E. coli O157:H7 confirmed at Minnesota fair
A Nerstrand woman whose husband became ill believes that he was dealing with E. coli after attending the fair. Bernadette Johnson said her husband, Greg, was stricken with a severe illness for six days. After talking with others, she was … Continue reading →
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5:01 AM | Review finds limited evidence for the effectiveness of the Fränkel regulator for class III malocclusions
Treatment of class III malocclusions frequently involves the use of functional appliances. The Fränkel regulator type III (FR-3) is a wire and acrylic appliance developed to treat class III malocclusions but there is controversy over its effectiveness. The aim of this review was to evaluate the effectiveness of the FR-3 in patients with Class III [read the full story...]
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12:28 AM | Jurors hear from FDA investigator in Salmonella trial
Jurors in the Salmonella trial heard from the first witness who had direct contact with two of the defendants Tuesday. A Food and Drug Administration investigator testified about what she found inside a Blakely peanut plant. After the CDC traced … Continue reading →
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