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Sat, 22 Jan 2022
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Bird Flu May Be on 'Silent' March in Europe, UN Agency Warns

Avian influenza, the virus that has led to the deaths of millions of birds and more than 200 people since 2003, may be more prevalent than previously thought in Europe as it goes undetected in waterfowl.

Germany's discovery of the fatal H5N1 strain in healthy ducks and geese two months ago may be a sign that domestic animals are harboring bird flu without getting sick, increasing the threat to human health, the Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations said in an e-mailed release.

Arrow Up

AIDS vaccine may raise infection risk: researchers

More than 3,000 people who volunteered to receive an experimental Merck and Co. AIDS vaccine are being told to come back and get extra tests because the jab may itself raise the risk of infection.

Researchers stress that they do not yet have enough information to say whether those who got the shot indeed are more susceptible to infection with HIV. But they said initial information from the trial, which was stopped suddenly last month, is worrisome.

Question

Canadian beef likely cause of US e.coli cases says USDA

A defunct Canadian meatpacker is "a likely source" of beef that caused an outbreak of food-borne illnesses in the United States and Canada, the U.S. meat safety agency said on Friday.

Nearly 100 illnesses have been reported due to the E. coli O157:H7 bacteria in the two nations. The U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service said a comparison of "DNA fingerprints" of beef samples pointed to Ranchers Beef Ltd, of Balzac, Alberta.

Evil Rays

Sliced Dread

Gluten causes countless Americans crippling stomach pain. Why do so few of them know about it?

Since high school, 38-year-old Oakland resident Laura Linden experienced chronic, mysterious stomach pain. It became gradually worse over the years. A couple of times, while the doe-eyed blond was an undergrad at UC Davis, the pain got so bad that she took herself to the emergency room. Once, she overheard a health worker remark that she probably had an eating disorder.

Health

Satan manifests itself in food with high fructose corn syrup

There is a secret ingredient lurking in almost everything you eat. Unless you are a self-proclaimed nutrition guru, you most likely consume a food or beverage with high fructose corn syrup everyday.

High fructose corn syrup sweetens products from soda - nutritionally dubbed "liquid satan" - to whole-wheat bread. The syrup, even saturating what seem like non-threatening items including ketchup, is one of the main contributors to the nation's struggle with obesity. And surprisingly, one of the least talked about.

People

Chemicals and Stress Cause Gene Changes That Can Be Inherited

Scientists are still deciphering what has been described as the second genetic code. They know that a number of chemicals in our bodies act like dimming switches. They suspect this chemical switching system can be affected by diet, the air pollution we inhale, whether we smoke, and the stress we endure -- and the resulting changes can be passed along to offspring.

Health

South Africa: Failure to Test Helps Spread of Deadly TB

Health authorities' failure to test tuberculosis (TB) patients for drug susceptibility appears to have inadvertently fuelled the spread of deadly drug-resistant strains of the disease in KwaZulu- Natal, scientists report in the Clinical Infectious Diseases journal.

Health

Medicine stopping any bleeding invented in Turkey

Turkish scientists have created a drug stopping any bleeding in a few minutes, which means it could be used in treating hemophilia, the Sabah newspaper reported Saturday.

"The preparation we created has overturned our knowledge of the mechanism that stops hemorrhage. It stops any bleeding in a few minutes. By using this drug, we can reduce the number of deaths from blood loss around the world," Professor Ibrahim Haznedaroglu from the Hacettepe University, where the medicine was created and tested, told the newspaper.

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We're One Step Closer to Creating Genetically Enhanced Humans

A new Nobel laureate's work shows that the prospect of genetically engineering children is controversial but no longer just a fantasy.

It's Nobel Prize season, and the Nobel scientists are very much in the news. James Watson, awarded the laureate in 1962 for helping to deduce the now-iconic double-helix structure of DNA, is currently embroiled in controversy after making a series of blatantly racist remarks in the UK Sunday Times this month.

But related views espoused by one of this year's laureates have gone unnoticed. In early October, the Nobel Prize for biology went to three scientists whose talent and persistence gave us "knockout mice," the genetically engineered lab animals widely used by researchers to model and study human diseases. In the words of a Nobel committee member, these designer mice have "led to penetrating new insights" in several biological fields.

Bulb

Think Healthy: Scientists discover a direct route from the brain to the immune system

It used to be dogma that the brain was shut away from the actions of the immune system, shielded from the outside forces of nature. But that's not how it is at all. In fact, thanks to the scientific detective work of Kevin Tracey, MD, it turns out that the brain talks directly to the immune system, sending commands that control the body's inflammatory response to infection and autoimmune diseases. Understanding the intimate relationship is leading to a novel way to treat diseases triggered by a dangerous inflammatory response.

Dr. Tracey, director and chief executive of The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, will be giving the 2007 Stetten Lecture on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD. His talk - Physiology and Immunology of the Cholinergic Anti-inflammatory Pathway - will highlight the discoveries made in his laboratory and the clinical trials underway to test the theory that stimulation of the vagus nerve could block a rogue inflammatory response and treat a number of diseases, including life-threatening sepsis.