PNG breaks new ground in tuberculosis research
The publication of the first compendium of studies on tuberculosis (TB) in Papua New Guinea (PNG) marks a watershed for scientific research in the field and the development of future leaders for the national response to this pressing public health crisis. The papers focus on a range of epidemiological, clinical and programmatic implementation aspects of TB in Papua New Guinea and represent findings from the research projects undertaken by participants in the operational research training course implemented by the Burnet Institute, University of PNG and PNG Institute of Medical Research under the stewardship of the National Department of Health. The manuscripts produced from this course highlight important operational issues for the TB program in Papua New Guinea, and collectively represent an extremely valuable resource.
India declared free of Avian Influenza
With effect from September 3, the OIE-World Organisation for Animal Health declared the country free of the virus, the Centre’s Animal Husbandry Department informed the states in a letter. In the last two years, outbreaks of the disease had been reported from several places, including Budhibara, Patharaganja, Malud, Brahmandeo, Kanheipur, Epinga and Nandala in Odisha, Goraho, Mubarakchak and Babura in Bihar and Fazil Khuthari in Jharkhand. All of them had been reported to the OIE and containment measures undertaken as per protocol.
Aklan enforces stricter rules to prevent ASF entry
Boy Ryan Zabal
Authorities here sustained its heighten security and quarantine measures to prevent the entry of animal diseases in airports and seaports of the province. Provincial Veterinary Office-Aklan is closely monitoring the entry of live animals, meat products and meat-by products in Aklan by setting up quarantine checkpoints in Altavas, Buruanga and Nabas to ensure meat products sold in markets are safe for human consumption. KIA Veterinary Quarantine Services head Dr. Christine Lynn Melgarejo said there is no outbreak of ASF, bird flu and foot and mouth disease in Aklan, despite cases of swine mortalities in Luzon.
How Delhi Government Has Battled Dengue With Startling Success
Dr. KK Aggarwal
A strong political will coupled with citizens' co-operation worked wonders to bring down the number of Dengue cases in the city even as the country faces an upward trend. From 4,431 cases in the capital in 2016 to 4,726 in 2017, and 2,798 in 2018, there has been around 80% reduction, and that's quite praiseworthy. All the stakeholders led by the state government worked towards one goal - reducing the cases of Dengue in the city. The efforts of health and sanitary departments, hospitals, RWAs, and the general public, including school children, youth and women's groups, lowered the casualty figures to just one in Delhi in 2017.
RDC XI Endorses DOH Anti-Dengue Advocacy Campaign
In support of the Department of Health’s (DOH) urgent campaign against dengue fever, the Regional Development Council (RDC) XI calls on government agencies and local government units to urge households, schools and communities to take preventive measures to curb the rising cases of the mosquito-borne disease in Davao Region. As key interventions, the DOH has encouraged everyone to be prime movers in controlling the mosquito population and avoiding possible dengue deaths within the community through (1) 4S strategy, (2) Four o’clock habit to search and destroy possible mosquito-breeding places at 4 p.m. daily, and the (3) Aksyon Barangay Kontra Dengue. The 4S campaign stands for “Search and Destroy” mosquito breeding places, “Secure Self Protection” from mosquito bite, “Seek Early Consultation” when signs and symptoms of dengue occur, and “Say Yes to Fogging” as a last resort when there is an impending outbreak.
Malaria breakthrough as scientists find ‘highly effective’ way to kill parasite
Human trials of new antimalarial drugs are in the pipeline after Kenyan scientists successfully used bacteria to kill the parasite that causes the disease. The Kenya Medical Research Institute (Kemri) and global health partners say the breakthrough could potentially lead to the development of a new class of drugs in less than two years.
Zika diagnostic test granted market authorization by FDA
A Zika diagnostic test developed by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis was newly granted market authorization by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Using an antibody as well as other components to detect anti-Zika antibodies in the blood of people recently infected with the virus, the test can detect signs of Zika infection in serum samples within 12 weeks of infection. The test is not meant to be used as a stand-alone proof of infection. The FDA recommends that the test be used only for people with symptoms of recent infection, as well as a history of living in or traveling to geographic regions where Zika circulates. Positive results should be confirmed in accordance with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Tuberculosis mutation discovery paves way for better treatments
A Rutgers New Jersey Medical School study has found a genetically tractable cause of drug tolerant tuberculosis, paving the way for researchers to develop new drugs to combat the global TB epidemic and cure the disease. This new research study reveals that reversible mutations in the M.tuberculosis glpK gene, a gene responsible for an important metabolic pathway, produce a reversible form of tolerance to most of the first-line drugs used to treat TB.
A new generation of anti-malarial drugs
Although artemisinin-based drug combinations are available to treat malaria, reports from Southeast Asia of treatment failures are raising concerns about drug resistance spreading to Africa. Fortunately, there is hope on the horizon because there are several new antimalarial drug candidates undergoing clinical testing as well as other promising drug targets that are under investigation.
Vaccine Misinformation: Statement by WHO Director-General on Facebook and Instagram
The World Health Organization welcomes the commitment by Facebook to ensure that users find facts about vaccines across Instagram, Facebook Search, Groups, Pages and forums where people seek out information and advice. Facebook will direct millions of its users to WHO’s accurate and reliable vaccine information in several languages, to ensure that vital health messages reach people who need them the most. Vaccine misinformation is a major threat to global health that could reverse decades of progress made in tackling preventable diseases.