Health Security Digest

  • devex

    Q&A: WHO's new Western Pacific director on vaccine hesitancy, UHC

    5 February 2019 - Devex

    Jenny Lei Ravelo

    A hotspot for infectious diseases, the Asia and Pacific region is currently facing a measles outbreak in parts of the Philippines and a re-emergence of polio in Papua New Guinea. This is part of the reason Dr. Takeshi Kasai, the new regional director of the World Health Organization’s Western Pacific office, emphasizes preparedness as a key priority.

  • Tech Explorist

    Scientists find antimalarial drug may be repurposed to treat Zika

    5 February 2019 - Tech Explorist

    Jyoti Singh

    In their search for a possible treatment for Zika virus infection, a team of Indian researchers has identified a viral protein that can be targeted by an already available antimalarial drug, hydroxychloroquine (HCQ).Researchers hit upon the protein when they conducted a high throughput virtual screening of a library of drugs approved by America’s Food and Drugs Authority. Out of 1861 compounds in the library, five including HCQ appeared to be possible candidates for the treatment of Zika virus.


  • Sydney Morning Herald

    Plague's ground zero: personal details revealed for the first time

    4 February 2019 - Sydney Morning Herald

    Julie Power

    Dock worker Arthur Paine of Ferry Lane in Dawes Point has an unenviable claim to fame. The then 33-year-old's home became ground zero of the bubonic plague on January 19, 1900, when he became the first recorded case in NSW. Paine recovered without a black death, as the disease was often called, and was later compensated for the loss of income while he was in quarantine. But its second victim, a 48-year-old sail-maker called Thomas Dudley, wasn't so lucky, reveals a NSW public register of the plague's victims from 1900 to 1908. The register will be made public today for the first time in 110 years. 



    Genome structure of malaria parasites linked to virulence

    4 February 2019 -

    An international research team led by scientists at the University of California, Riverside, and the La Jolla Institute for Immunology has found that malaria parasite genomes are shaped by parasite-specific gene families, and that this genome organization strongly correlates with the parasite's virulence. The findings highlight the importance of spatial genome organization in and the control of virulence in malaria parasites.

  • Japan Times

    Bypassing U.S. regulators, Takeda takes its dengue shot to the tropics first

    3 February 2019 - The Japan Times

    Julie Steenhuysen

    A new vaccine for the dengue virus is taking a potentially risky road to prevent the mosquito-borne disease that infects nearly 400 million people each year. Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. plans to seek approval for the experimental vaccine first in countries where the virus is endemic, rather than starting with the United States or Europe, whose rigorous reviews are often used as a benchmark worldwide, company executives said.

  • The times of india

    RGUHS dengue research takes a beating, thanks to dip in case

    3 February 2019 - The Times of India

    Sunitha Rao R 

    A dengue-related research started by Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences to figure out bio-markers — which help identify the type of disease and its stages — is yet to see any progress. Reason: The study requires blood samples of 1,000 patients and the number of serious dengue cases was low in the state last year. RGUHS authorities said they have blood samples of only 371 dengue patients who have agreed to be part of the research, which can only be done with a minimum of 1,000 patients. 


  • Medicines for Malaria Venture logo

    Medicines for Malaria Venture January newsletter

    1 February 2019 - Medicines for Malaria Venture
  • University of Oxford

    Oxford University signs universal flu vaccine development deal with US startup BWV

    1 February 2019 - University of Oxford

    Via CIDRAP

    Developed by scientists at the University’s Department of Zoology the vaccine protects against all influenza strains by targeting parts of the virus that induce a protective immune response but are also limited in variability. The technology has the potential of providing life-long immunity against flu.

  • Science Magazine

    Opposing reactions in coenzyme A metabolism sensitize Mycobacterium tuberculosis to enzyme inhibition

    1 February 2019 - Science Magazine

    Elaine Ballinger et al.,

    Screening a chemical library revealed an amidino-urea compound called “8918” that kills Mtb, including drug-resistant clinical isolates. 8918 inhibits Mtb in mice and spares other bacteria, yeast, and mammalian cells.

  • Science Daily

    Male birth control for the malaria parasite

    31 January 2019 - Science Daily

    Disrupting two genes involved in the preservation of RNA molecules inhibits the ability of the male form of the malaria parasite to mature and be transmitted from human blood into mosquitoes, interrupting a key stage in the parasite's life-cycle and cutting off an important step in the spread of the disease.


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