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Cellular homeostasis: Gene identified for immune system reset after infection

C. elegans worm
© Credit: Duke University, Alejandro Aballay
Duke researchers have uncovered the genes that are normally activated during recovery from bacterial infection in the C. elegans worm. The finding could be key to new antibiotics and countering auto-immune disorders.
When pathogenic bacteria like Salmonella or Staphylococcus invade a host, the host organism should respond by going into a state of high alert, altering its metabolism to defend against the attack.

But if the host doesn't reverse course once the battle is won, its efforts will be wasted on defense rather than on repairing the damage done by bacterial invaders.

Duke University researchers have uncovered the genes that are normally activated during recovery from bacterial infection. The finding could lead to ways to jumpstart this recovery process and possibly fend off autoimmune diseases and chronic inflammatory disorders that can result from the body staying in attack mode for too long.

The study appears Oct. 23, 2014 in PLOS Genetics.

"While the steps involved in recognizing microbial pathogens and inducing the immune response have been extensively studied, the pathways involved in host recovery after an infection are not well understood," said Alejandro Aballay, Ph.D., an associate professor of molecular genetics and microbiology at Duke University School of Medicine.
Beaker

A historical analysis of the Ebola Virus yields the question, 'Is it real?'

ebola
In order to understand the true background to the present and past "Ebola" epidemics, the following booklet from a colloquim held in 1977 is recommended for further personal study. It contains the collective proceedings of 3-day meeting between a large international group of members from the medical and science community also from the WHO which co-sponsored the colloquium held in 1977 in Belgium.

"Ebola Virus Haemorrhagic Fever" (http://www.enivd.de/EBOLA/pdf/ebola-hires.pdf )

Pieces of an extraordinary puzzle unfold already on the first 180 pages:

Special Note from Dr. Sircus: In answer to the question Is Ebola Real? The best answer is we cannot be sure. If we do not know where it came from and we are not sure about the tests that test for it how do we really know if it is real? There are many doubts about Ebola though there is no doubt that the world health ministries as well as the press are having a field day doing what they love to do and that is to scare the living daylights out of the public. I am looking deeply into these questions and have been asked to publish this essay by Felicia Popescu.

Comment: There is no doubt that people are dying of something but is it truly Ebola or something (i.e. vaccine-related injuries, treatment side effects) that is subsequently labeled as Ebola?

Cow

Livestock animals sicker than ever, thanks to antibiotics

© Monty Rakusen/Getty Images
A new study suggests that regularly dosing animals is a worse idea than was previously thought.

It has long been understood that feeding animals antibiotics can create resistant bacteria - bacteria that can cause problems for human health. That's why the Food and Drug Administration has been concerned for decades over the practice of giving livestock subtherapeutic doses to promote growth. While the agency has yet to do much of anything to curb the problem, save for some voluntary regulations, new research suggests that the steady supply of drugs could make animals sicker - and cause disease to spread more rapidly.

The new study, published this week in the journal PNAS, looked at how salmonella bacteria was spread in a population of mice. When treated with antibiotics, mice that were sick but showed relatively low amounts of salmonella in their droppings started behaving more like "superspreaders," shedding more bacteria and suffering more acute symptoms. Meanwhile, other mice that, before being treated, passed higher amounts of bacteria and showed fewer symptoms did not shed any less salmonella after receiving an antibiotic.

Comment: Learn more about the abuse of antibiotics and the rise of 'super bugs':

Health

Mali confirms its first case of Ebola, becoming the sixth West African country to be touched

© Getty Images
Mali confirmed its first case of Ebola on Thursday, becoming the sixth West African country to be touched by the worst outbreak on record of the haemorrhagic fever, which has killed nearly 4,900 people.

Mali's Health Minister Ousmane Kone told state television that the patient in the western town of Kayes was a two-year-old girl who had recently arrived from neighboring Guinea, where the outbreak began.

"The condition of the girl, according to our services, is improving thanks to her rapid treatment," the minister told state television.

A health ministry official, who asked not to be identified, said the girl's mother died in Guinea a few weeks ago and the baby was brought by relatives to the Malian capital Bamako, where she stayed for 10 days in the Bagadadji neighborhood before heading to Kayes.

A ministry statement said the girl, who came from the Guinean town of Kissidougou, was admitted at the Fousseyni Daou hospital in Kayes on Wednesday night, where she was promptly tested for Ebola.

Comment: Let's not forget that several Western countries sent troops to the North of Mali:
The war on Mali: What you should know
The Spanish influenza pandemic of 1918 was a global disaster killing between 20-50 million people. The spread in the United States started with soldiers returning from WWI.
See: The extreme idiocy of sending troops to fight Ebola

Ambulance

Things are looking bad in Western Sierra Leone: More than 20 people dying a day, problem collecting corpses

© Unknown
The situation is looking grim in Western Sierra Leone
After emerging months ago in eastern Sierra Leone, Ebola is now hitting the western edges of the country where the capital is located with dozens of people falling sick each day, the government said Tuesday. So many people are dying that removing bodies is reportedly a problem. Forty-nine confirmed cases of Ebola emerged in just one day, Monday, in two Ebola zones in and around the capital, the National Ebola Response Center, or NERC, said. Lawmaker Claude Kamanda who represents a western area said more than 20 deaths are being reported daily. Kamanda told the local Politico newspaper that authorities are experiencing challenges collecting corpses from both quarantined and non-quarantined homes. Authorities say the uncontrolled movement of people from the interior to Waterloo which is the gateway to Freetown, the capital, has fueled the increase of Ebola cases in the west. There is a strong feeling that people are violating the quarantines elsewhere and coming to Freetown through Waterloo.

There are 851 total confirmed Ebola cases in the two zones, called Western Area Urban and Western Area Rural, the NERC said. In numbers of cases, they may soon surpass a former epicenter of the outbreak in the country, the eastern districts of Kenema and Kailahun where there have been a total of 1,012 confirmed cases. No new cases were reported Monday in Kenema and Kailahun but a World Health Organization spokeswoman said it is too early to declare that the epidemic has burned itself out in the east. "There was a drop in new cases in Kenema and Kailahun and fingers were crossed but there has been a bit of a flare up thanks to a couple of unsafe burials," said Margaret Harris, WHO's spokeswoman in Sierra Leone. "So it's too early to say we have a real decline ... definitely too early to say it's been beaten there." A local newspaper suggested Tuesday that authorities quarantine Waterloo. The World Food Program [WFP] over the weekend delivered emergency food rations to people there.


Comment: What people need is decent food and supplements that will boost their immune system, like meat, healthy animal fats and vitamin C. So, no WFP 'supercereal', a kind of flour, mixed with sugar and enriched vegetable oil, thank you very much. Keep your junk food.


Comment: While some people in the West (and Rwanda?) start exhibiting symptoms of hysteria, banning children and teachers from schools or even attacking people from West African countries the situation in Sierra Leone is getting worse.
And the first case of Ebola has been confirmed in Mali.

Ambulance

Doctor in NYC tests positive for Ebola

© REUTERS/BRENDAN MCDERMID
Members of the New York City Department of Health exit the building of a Health Care worker who is suspected to have Ebola in in the Harlem section of New York, October 23, 2014
A physician with Doctors Without Borders who returned to New York City from West Africa has tested positive for Ebola, the New York Times said on Thursday.

Dr. Craig Spencer was working for the humanitarian organization in Guinea, one of three West African nations hardest hit by Ebola.

Spencer, 33, developed a fever and gastrointestinal symptoms and notified Doctors Without Borders on Thursday morning, the organization said in a statement.

Spencer was transported to Bellevue Hospital from his Manhattan apartment by a specially trained team wearing protective gear, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said in a statement.

He tested positive for Ebola, the Times said, making him the city's first diagnosed case. The Times said a further test will be conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to confirm the initial test.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo planned a news conference at the hospital for 9 p.m. ET (0100 GMT). A spokeswoman for the mayor said she could not confirm or deny the report and declined to comment ahead of the news conference.
Ambulance

New York City hospital testing a healthcare worker for Ebola

© Reuters/Fabian Bimmer
A volunteer of the German army Bundeswehr, wearing a protective suit, is disinfected by a colleague during an Ebola training session at the Marseille barracks in Appen, October 23, 2014.
A New York City hospital is running Ebola tests on a healthcare worker who returned to the United States from West Africa with a fever and gastrointestinal symptoms, the city's Health Department said on Thursday.

Preliminary test results were expected in the next 12 hours, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said in a statement.

The patient being treated at Bellevue Hospital is a healthcare worker who returned to the United States within the past 21 days from one of the three African countries facing the Ebola outbreak, it said.

The Health Department said it was tracing all of the patient's contacts to identify anyone who may be at potential risk. It also said the patient had been transported by a specially trained unit wearing protective gear.
Family

Omega 3 can help children with ADD


Supplements of the fatty acids omega 3 and 6 can help children and adolescents who have a certain kind of ADHD.
Supplements of the fatty acids omega 3 and 6 can help children and adolescents who have a certain kind of ADHD. These are the findings of a dissertation at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, which also indicates that a special cognitive training program can improve problem behavior in children with ADHD.

Between three to six percent of all school age children are estimated to have ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). ADHD is a disorder that entails a difficulty controlling impulses and temper, sitting still, waiting, or being attentive for more than short periods at a time. There are various kinds of ADHD where disturbances in attention, hyperactivity and impulsivity have varying degrees of prominence.

ADHD is often treated with stimulant medications, which are effective for most, but do not work for everyone.

Relevant improvement

In this study, 75 children and adolescents with ADHD were given either the fatty acids omega 3 and 6 or a placebo over three months, and then they were all given omega 3/6 over three months. The study was conducted double-blind, which means that neither the researchers nor the participants were allowed to know whether they received the active capsules until afterwards.

"For the group as a whole, we did not see any major improvement, but in 35 percent of the children and adolescents who have the inattentive subtype of ADHD called ADD, the symptoms improved so much that we can talk about a clinically relevant improvement," says Mats Johnson, doctoral student at the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg.

Comment: It's important to remember that there are several studies linking ADHD to diet and changing the diet could help.

Study: Western Diet Link to ADHD

Study: Cutting Out Suspect Foods Could Help Calm ADHD Children

Do Synthetic Food Colors Cause Hyperactivity?

Family

Sleep difficulties common among toddlers with psychiatric disorders


Sleep difficulties -- particularly problems with falling asleep -- were very common among toddlers and preschool-aged children who were receiving clinical treatment for a wide range of psychiatric disorders.
John Boekamp, Ph.D., clinical director of the Pediatric Partial Hospital Program (PPHP) at Bradley Hospital recently led a study that found sleep difficulties -- particularly problems with falling asleep -- were very common among toddlers and preschool-aged children who were receiving clinical treatment for a wide range of psychiatric disorders. The study, titled "Sleep Onset and Night Waking Insomnias in Preschoolers with Psychiatric Disorders," is now published online in the journal Child Psychiatry & Human Development.

"The most common sleep difficulties reported nationally for toddlers and preschoolers are problems of going to bed, falling asleep and frequent night awakenings -- collectively, these problems are referred to as behavioral insomnias of childhood," said Boekamp. "Sleep problems in young children frequently co-occur with other behavioral problems, with evidence that inadequate sleep is associated with daytime sleepiness, less optimal preschool adjustment, and problems of irritability, hyperactivity and attention."

Boekamp's team was interested in learning more about sleep and sleep problems in young children with behavior problems, as early sleep problems may be both a cause and consequence of children's difficulties with behavioral and emotional self-regulation. "Essentially, these young children might be caught in a cycle, with sleep disruption affecting their psychiatric symptoms and psychiatric symptoms affecting their sleep-wake organization," said Boekamp.
Ambulance

A vegetarian diet does something terrible to men

© Reuters / Jason Lee
But is he damaging his chances of fathering a child?
The general belief is that vegetarians are usually healthier. However, studies conducted in the U.S. are showing some detrimental side-effects to the sperm of male vegetarians.

In an experiment done by researchers at Loma Linda University, 443 meat-eaters and 31 vegetarians and vegans were monitored between 2009 and 2013. They initially assumed vegetarians' sperm would be healthy, but here's what they found, according to lead study author Eliza Orzylowska:
"We found that diet does significantly affect sperm quality. Vegetarian and vegan diets were associated with much lower sperm counts than omnivorous diets. Although these people are not infertile, it is likely to play a factor in conception, particularly for couples who are trying to conceive naturally, the old-fashioned way."
They also found that vegetarians had 30 percent lower concentrations of sperm (50 million per milliliter versus 70 million) and that their sperm was also weaker in terms of movement. For vegetarians, only 30 percent of their sperm were active, as compared to 60 percent of their meat-eating counterparts.

Comment: Don't miss:

- Real men don't eat carbs

- Lierre Keith on 'The Vegetarian Myth - Food, Justice and Sustainability'

- Burying The Vegetarian Hypothesis

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