Category Archives: Virology

INCLUDES Measles; Smallpox; Virus genotyping; Hepatitis – all; Waterborne virus (Norovirus, Rotavirus), population health, communicable diseases, gastrointestinal disease outbreaks.
EXCLUDES Lyssavirus, Hendra, Influenza or Vectorborne diseases

Job insecurity is driving the best and brightest out of medical research

Brisbane Times Anna Patty April 29 2016

Darren Saunders was developing a cure for pancreatic cancer when he gave up his medical research job to find one that was more secure.
The constant stress of going from contract to contract each year and spending precious time applying for research grants finally took its toll.

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Disease evolution: how new illnesses emerge when we change how we live

The Conversation Simon Reid April 29, 2016

Humans have been “acquiring” infectious diseases from animals (zoonotic diseases) since we first started hunting wild game on the African savannahs. Indeed, nearly 60% of bugs that infect humans originated in animals.
These days, we seem to see more “new” diseases, such as Zika, Ebola and SARS. But there are plenty more lurking. A recent study suggests there are around 300,000 pathogens we don’t even know about and some have the potential to spread from animals to humans.
The world’s scientific community is focused on how to improve detection and responses to emerging diseases such as Zika virus and Ebola. So what can we learn from the most recent large-scale outbreaks?

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Flu jabs ‘more effective in morning’

BBC News 26 April 2016

Morning flu jabs provoke a stronger immune response than those given in the afternoon, a study shows.

The trial at 24 doctors’ practices found people vaccinated before lunch produced the most defensive antibodies.

The University of Birmingham team suggested immunising people in tune with the body’s natural rhythm could be a cheap way to save lives.

Researchers suggest existence of new Ebola-like strain

BioPrepWatch 21 April 2016

Researchers from the University of Kent have published a new study that suggests the Reston virus may be capable of mutating into a virus with an Ebola-like impact.
The Reston virus is in the same biological family as Ebola, but in its current form is not known to cause death. It typically infects pigs in Asia, though it has been known to infect humans as well. The research, lead by Senior Lecturer in Computational Biology Mark Wass, Professor of Molecular Medicine Martin Michaelis, and Lecturer in Virology Jeremy Rossman, found that given a few mutations to a specific protein, the Reston virus could take on fatal characteristics.
The findings were recently published in the journal Scientific Reports.

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New ‘parechovirus’ can cause developmental delays, brain damage in babies, research shows

ABC News Sohie Scott 22 April 2016

A new virus, which put 80 Australian babies in hospital, can cause developmental delays and brain damage, leading doctors have found.
New research, to be presented at the Australasian Society for Infectious Diseases (ASID) Annual Scientific Meeting, found more than half of the babies who had parechovirus in 2013 and 2014, went on to have developmental problems 12 months later.

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Study offers efficient alternative for Ebola screening program for travelers

(University of Illinois College of Engineering 28 March 2016) As of Jan. 31, 2016, a total of 28,639 cases and 11,316 deaths have been attributed to Ebola, figures that may significantly underestimate the actual scope of the 2014 outbreak in West Africa. One strategy recommended by the WHO required exit screening at airports for passengers who depart from countries with Ebola. Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign provide an alternative policy for Ebola entry screening at airports in the United States.

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Research shows potential for emergence of new Ebola virus that causes disease in humans

(University of Kent 24 March 2016) New research at the University of Kent has highlighted the potential for the emergence of a new form of Ebola virus.

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