Infectious disease remains a national and global security threat. With the ease in which people can travel around the world, we should expect other exotic diseases to arrive in America. Ebola, Lassa, and Zika have already done so, and yet-to-be-identified microbes are also likely to be imported.
Disgust is an emotional cue, and it helps us avoid situations fraught with disease. Are we responding to how infectious diseases are transmitted, or how they appear?
A team of researchers wants patients to shorten their antibiotic course. This suggestion is problematic, and possibly dangerous, both to individuals and the larger battle against antibiotic resistance. And it goes against the recommendations of many organizations.
Mosquitoes transmit a wide variety of nasty microbes, from viruses like dengue, yellow fever and Zika, to parasites like malaria. The sheer number and diversity of diseases transmitted by mosquitoes makes vaccine development a challenge. But what if a vaccine could, instead, target the mosquito?
With drones, discovery in science and medicine makes the sky – and now the sea – the limit.
Unless they're eradicated smallpox-style, infectious diseases never disappear. Like an unlucky penny, they can show up at any time. Three stories from around the U.S. serve to underscore a crucial lesson.
Just how easy is it to get sick on a plane? Researchers from Emory University decided to find out, and to identify the factors that determined whether passengers exited the plane with or without an infection. Their findings are surprising, with one big influencer being the seat you were assigned.
The ratio of tuberculosis cases comparing immigrants to native-born Americans is more than 2:1. Standardizing these numbers paints an even starker picture. The incidence of tuberculosis is almost 15 per 100,000 immigrants, while it is only 1 per 100,000 native-born Americans. The good news is that tuberculosis is curable, and the disease is in decline all over the world.
New research into the 1918 and 2009 influenza pandemics reveal a potential warning sign: Mild cases of influenza that occur in the spring or summer may be a harbinger of a devastating pandemic to come in the autumn.
Every year, 5.6 million children under the age of 5 die. That's roughly the same size as the entire Atlanta metropolitan area. Imagine a city that size filled only with children aged 4 and younger. Now, imagine that city being wiped off the map. Every year. That's the scope of the problem that global poverty presents.
We want American scientists to know as quickly as possible when an unusual case of the sniffles occurs in Africa or Asia. From there, we could be able to model the likelihood of the disease spreading beyond its origin. Such a strategy could help prevent Ebola from making a return visit to the United States.
C-diff is a bacterium that causes a life-threatening infection. Though the bacterium can infect healthy individuals, it is of particular concern to those who are hospitalized or are taking antibiotics.