ICMR scientists identify new biomarker for malaria
Dr. Aditi Jain
Detection of malaria infection could become more accurate soon. A team of researchers from Indian Council of Medical Research’s Jabalpur-based National Institute of Research in Tribal Health (NIRTH) has identified a genetic sequence in the body of malaria parasite that promises to help develop a more sensitive diagnostic test for the disease. An enzyme called glutamate dehydrogenase could offer a solution. “Our study provides scientific evidence for the conserved nature of glutamate dehydrogenase sequences in Indian isolates which can be used as a potential biomarker for diagnosis of malaria,” said Dr. Praveen Kumar Bharti, leader of the research team.
Biosecurity and germ warfare
Dr Norman Swan
Dr Michael Osterholm was among the first to describe toxic shock syndrome — and also analysed one of the earliest descriptions of infection during warfare. He's currently serving as US Science Envoy on Global Health Security, working to ensure cooperation across countries when it comes to combating infectious disease. He reflects on the current biosecurity landscape, the possibilities for low-tech labs to engineer germs for warfare, and the history of bacterial infection.
Habitat loss linked to global emergence of infectious diseases
Auburn University researchers have published a new hypothesis that could provide the foundation for new scientific studies looking into the association of habitat loss and the global emergence of infectious diseases. Globally, scientists believe habitat loss is associated with emerging infectious diseases, or EIDs, spreading from wildlife to humans, such as Ebola, West Nile virus, SARS, Marburg virus and others. The Auburn team developed a new hypothesis, the coevolution effect, which is rooted in ecology and evolutionary biology, to explain the underlying mechanisms that drive this association. "We provide a testable hypothesis that we hope other researchers will try to test with their data, as we will be doing," Schwartz said. "Through our hypothesis, we propose that as humans alter the landscape through habitat loss, forest fragments act as islands, and the wildlife hosts and disease-causing microbes that live within them undergo rapid diversification," Zohdy said.
The inappropriate use of antibiotics in hospitalized dengue virus-infected children with presumed concurrent bacterial infection in teaching and private hospitals in Bandung, Indonesia
Via CIDRAP - Riyadi Adrizain et al.,
Dengue virus infection (DVI) among children is a leading cause of hospitalization in endemic areas. Hospitalized patients are at risk of receiving unnecessary antibiotics. A retrospective medical review analysis study was conducted to evaluate the prevalence, indication, and choice of antibiotics given to hospitalized patients less than 15 years of age with DVI in two different hospital settings (teaching and private hospitals) in the Municipality of Bandung. Epidemiological, clinical, and laboratory data were obtained using a pre-tested standardized questionnaire from patients’ medical records admitted from January 1 to December 31, 2015. The use of antibiotics in private hospitals was inappropriate in most cases while the use of antibiotics in the teaching hospital was more accountable. This study indicated that interventions, such as the implementation of the antibiotics stewardship program, are needed especially in private hospitals to reduce inappropriate use of antibiotics.
Health Dept takes aim at dengue sources
Owners of properties who fail to get rid of mosquito larvae might face jail terms of up to three years and/or have to pay a fine of up to 25,000 baht, according to Dr Sukhum Kanchanapimai, permanent secretary of the Ministry of Public Health. In a bid to control the disease, the Ministry of Public Health and another eight agencies yesterday signed an environmental management pact for mosquito control, which will become effective in 2019-2023.
Oceania representatives build public health emergency response capability
Humanitarian public health and disaster response professionals located throughout the Oceania region gathered at James Cook University in Cairns, Australia, for the Health and Humanitarian Action in Emergencies (HHAE) course, June 3-14. HHAE is a two-week course developed by the Center for Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, and James Cook University’s College of Health of Public Health, Medical and Veterinary Sciences to improve the management of public health emergencies during a humanitarian crises.
Influenza update - 343
In the temperate zones of the southern hemisphere, influenza detections increased overall. The 2019 influenza season appeared to have started earlier than previous years in Australia, Chile, South Africa and New Zealand. Influenza A(H3N2) viruses predominated in Oceania and South Africa.Influenza A (H1N1)pdm09 viruses predominated in South America. In Southern Asia and South East Asia, influenza activity was low overall, with exception of Bangladesh and Cambodia, respectively. For more information on influenza transmission zones, see the link below:
Dengue 3 Outbreak, Palau, December 2018 – May 2019 - Report Date: May 28, 2019
The Ministry of Health activated its emergency response team on December 7, 2018. The team has been tasked with raising community awareness of the outbreak and dengue prevention measures, conducting disease surveillance and reporting, strengthening mosquito control measures, and ensuring adequate resources are available to combat the outbreak. Between May 20 26, 2019, there were 9 new cases reported . This brings the total from December 1, 2018 to May 26, 2019 to 196 cases.
Polio: Statement of the Twenty-first IHR Emergency Committee
The Emergency Committee reviewed the data on wild poliovirus (WPV1) and circulating vaccine derived polioviruses (cVDPV). The Secretariat presented a report of progress for affected IHR States Parties subject to Temporary Recommendations. The following IHR States Parties provided an update on the current situation and the implementation of the WHO Temporary Recommendations since the Committee last met on 19 February 2019: Afghanistan, DR Congo, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Somalia.
Malaria rates plummet in Solomons but mosquitos adapt
Research into malaria in Solomon Islands has found that while there have been big reductions in the number of people becoming ill in the past 20 years, the mosquitoes that carry the infectious parasite are adapting their behaviour. Professor Tom Burkot from the Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine at Australia's James Cook University, says mosquitoes have changed their behaviour since the introduction of insecticide treated bed nets, by feeding from humans earlier in the evening and staying outdoors.