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Pneumonia & Flu

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Researchers Report First Person-To-Person Transmission Of H7N9

“Researchers have reported the first case of human-to-human transmission of the new bird flu that has emerged in China,” BBC News reports (Thomas, 8/6). “A father, who became sick in March, passed the H7N9 virus to his daughter, epidemiologists report Tuesday in BMJ,” NPR’s “Shots” blog writes (Doucleff, 8/6). “The…

Researchers Plan To Genetically Modify H7N9 Virus To Better Understand Mutations

“Scientists have unveiled plans to genetically engineer a lethal strain of bird flu to understand how it could mutate in nature and trigger a catastrophic pandemic,” The Guardian reports (Sample, 8/7). “Some of the world’s leading flu researchers argue that genetically altering [the H7N9] virus in high-security labs is key…

Researchers Find MERS Antibodies Among Camels, Providing Clue To Virus’s Origin

“Camels may be a carrier of the mysterious virus that has infected at least 94 people in the Middle East and killed half of them, scientists are reporting,” the New York Times reports (Grady, 8/8). “Since the virus was first identified last September, there have been 94 illnesses, including 46…

Saudi Health Ministry Says No MERS Cases Detected So Far Among Hajj Pilgrims

“Saudi Arabia has so far recorded no cases of the deadly MERS coronavirus among pilgrims in the holy city of Mecca for the annual hajj season, the Ministry of Health said on Saturday,” Reuters reports. “The death toll from the respiratory virus in the kingdom, where the strain emerged last…

China Confirms First H7N9 Case Since August

“China has confirmed a new case of the H7N9 bird flu, state media said, the country’s first report since August of human infection with a virus that has so far afflicted 135 people,” Reuters reports. “China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission said 45 people had died from the virus,…

Scientific American Examines Impact Of Government Shutdown On Health, Science Activities

Following approval of “a final deal to keep the [U.S.] government running until January 15, researchers across the nation say their work — some of it already compromised by the budget sequestration — will suffer lasting damage as a result of the 16-day shutdown,” Scientific American reports. “Health surveillance may…

Improved Pneumonia Vaccine, Health Monitoring Systems Could Reduce Child Deaths In Kenya

IRIN: Pneumonia vaccine shows promise in Kenya “Better uptake of the new pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) in children under five alongside more robust health monitoring systems at community level could help stem pneumonia related-deaths in children in Kenya: 20 percent of deaths in children under five are attributable to the…

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