Search for: "tuberculosis" - 131 articles found

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Sponsored • Covid-19 management

Rapid and robust PCR testing for infectious diseases at Innklinikum Altötting and Mühldorf

The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of the fast and accurate diagnosis of infectious diseases in clinical settings. Harald Maier discusses the implementation of rapid molecular diagnostics in the central clinical diagnostics laboratory at Innklinikum Altötting and Mühldorf, highlighting how the use of PCR testing has benefitted the hospital during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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News • 'CRyPTIC' research

Global tuberculosis study identifies genetic causes of drug resistance

Using cutting-edge genomic sequencing techniques, researchers at the University of Oxford have identified almost all the genomic variation that gives people resistance to 13 of the most common tuberculosis (TB) drug treatments. The Comprehensive Resistance Prediction for Tuberculosis International Consortium (CRyPTIC) research project has collected the largest ever global dataset of clinical M.…

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News • TB drug development cooperation

Unite4TB: A new era in Tuberculosis treatment development

To advance anti-tuberculosis (TB) science and enable the progression of new, safe, and affordable treatment solutions for TB patients worldwide, a new consortium of 30 partners from 13 countries has officially launched. The 7-year, €185 million project called Unite4TB, aims to accelerate and improve the clinical evaluation of combinations of existing and novel drugs, with the goal of developing…

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News • Deep learning vs Aids

AI app could help diagnose HIV more accurately

Pioneering technology developed by University College London (UCL) and Africa Health Research Institute (AHRI) researchers could transform the ability to accurately interpret HIV test results, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Academics from the London Centre for Nanotechnology at UCL and AHRI used deep learning (artificial intelligence/AI) algorithms to improve health workers’…

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News • „Swarm Learning“

AI with swarm intelligence to analyse medical data

Communities benefit from sharing knowledge and experience among their members. Following a similar principle - called “swarm learning” - an international research team has trained artificial intelligence algorithms to detect blood cancer, lung diseases and Covid-19 in data stored in a decentralized fashion. This approach has advantage over conventional methods since it inherently provides…

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News • Bioorganic chemistry

Why M. tuberculosis is so resistant to drugs and immune defenses

A consortium of researchers from Russia, Belarus, Japan, Germany and France led by the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology have uncovered the way in which Mycobacterium tuberculosis survives in iron-deficient conditions by utilizing rubredoxin B, a protein from a rubredoxin family that play an important role in adaptation to changing environmental conditions.

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Sponsored • Radiology collaboration

Improved workflow and a touch of Disney magic

Improving workflow is one of the major challenges that radiology departments face. The need to be more efficient, deliver timely and effective patient care, and keep an eye on costs are all factors that seem to be ever-present in the modern imaging department. With the added demands of the coronavirus pandemic as radiology departments continue to play a critical role in the fight against…

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News • Study from Zambia shows many more deaths

Experts: Impact of Covid-19 in Africa “vastly underestimated”

The impact of Covid-19 in Africa has been vastly underestimated, warn researchers in a new study. Outside of South Africa, this is the first study to provide systematic surveillance data capturing the impact of Covid-19 in Africa. Their findings are based on polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test results for 364 deceased people of all ages at the University Teaching Hospital morgue in Lusaka,…

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News • TB test shows promise

New method to assist fast-tracking of vaccines

With Covid-19 dominating medical science and human concern, chemists at the University of Sydney have developed a method to quickly and safely synthesise protein vaccines for respiratory diseases for pre-clinical tests. Their approach can be used to test vaccine strategies against novel pandemic pathogens such as SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19.

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News • "Faces" of the disease

Covid-19: researchers identify at least 5 variants

According to current studies, the Covid-19 disease which is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus comprises at least five different variants. These differ in how the immune system responds to the infection. Researchers from the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) and the University of Bonn, together with other experts from Germany, Greece and the Netherlands, present these findings…

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Article • The role of chest CT in diagnosis and treatment

UPDATE: Covid-19 and lung infections imaging

RSNA 2020: International experts showcased new studies on chest CT’s role in Covid-19 diagnosis and treatment. A staggering volume of work and has been produced on the pandemic this year, with an average 367 Covid-19 journal articles published per week, according to Michael Chung, Assistant professor of radiology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, NYC.

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News • Using virus particles in exhaled breath

New SARS-CoV-2 test to deliver results in under 5 minutes

Research and innovation hub Imec announced that it has started developing a groundbreaking SARS-CoV-2 test. Unlike current approaches (using blood, saliva, or a nasopharyngeal swab), the new test will identify SARS-CoV-2 virus particles in a person’s exhaled breath. The solution promises the accurate identification of a contagious case in less than five minutes.

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Video • For breakthroughs against Hepatitis C

Nobel Prize in Medicine goes to Harvey J. Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M. Rice

The 2020 Nobel Prize in Medicine is awarded to three scientists who have made a decisive contribution to the fight against blood-borne hepatitis, a major global health problem that causes cirrhosis and liver cancer in people around the world. Harvey J. Alter, Michael Houghton and Charles M. Rice made seminal discoveries that led to the identification of a novel virus, Hepatitis C virus.

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News • Immune system

Tuberculosis vaccine also makes less susceptible to other infections

A tuberculosis vaccine developed 100 years ago also makes vaccinated persons less susceptible to other infections. While this effect has been recognized for a long time, it is not known what causes it. Together with colleagues from Australia and Denmark, researchers from Radboud university medical center the universities of Nijmegen and Bonn have now presented a possible answer to this question.

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News • Teixobactin against superbugs

Researchers find 'resistance resistant' antibiotic

University of Melbourne researchers are finding ways to beat dangerous superbugs with ‘resistance resistant’ antibiotics, and it could help in the fight against coronavirus (COVID-19) complications. As bacteria evolve, they develop strategies that undermine antibiotics and morph into ‘superbugs’ that can resist most available treatments and cause potentially lethal infections. The…

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News • BCG vs tumour recurrence

Modified tuberculosis vaccine shows promise against bladder cancer

The human immune system can recognize and eliminate not only germs but also cancer cells. This is why treatments with weakened germs can help the immune system in its fight against cancer. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin have genetically modified the tuberculosis vaccine BCG in a way that it stimulates the immune system more specifically. Consequently, the…

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News • Development of a highly sensitive analytical workflow

Collaboration for infectious disease diagnosis and patient monitoring

Thermo Fisher Scientific and NanoPin Technologies, Inc. have entered into a collaborative relationship to advance blood-based infectious disease detection technology through the development of highly sensitive liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS)-based workflows. Through the detection of disease-related antigens directly from patient blood samples, NanoPin's unique diagnostic platform…

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Article • Where are the infectiologists?

‘The hygiene plan is nothing but a fig leaf’

Nosocomial infections cause more deaths than traffic accidents – a stunning discovery made in a recent German study. Worse: infectious diseases long thought eradicated in Europe, such as measles, tuberculosis (TB) and, more recently, syphilis, are also implicated. The increasing number of patients places an additional financial burden on healthcare. But – and this might be the good news –…

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News • Epidemiology

Tuberculosis: A quarter of the world's population at risk

A new study from Aarhus University Hospital and Aarhus University has shown that probably 1 in 4 people in the world carry the tuberculosis bacterium in the body. The disease tuberculosis is caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium Tuberculosis, which affects more than 10 million people every year, and kills up to 2 million, making it the most deadly of the infectious diseases.

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News • Global health

WHO updates list of essential medicines and diagnostics

The World Health Organisation's (WHO) Essential Medicines List and List of Essential Diagnostics are core guidance documents that help countries prioritize critical health products that should be widely available and affordable throughout health systems. Now, updated versions of the two lists have been published, focusing on cancer and other global health challenges, with an emphasis on effective…

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Article • Detecting migrant health risks

‘Refugees do not bring diseases to western shores’

The migrant population is fast growing and heterogeneous. Experts at a session held during the European Congress of Radiology (ECR 2019) concluded that radiologists can play a key role in detecting and differentiating related diseases. Migration is a growing phenomenon and has an impact on health, according to Jozef Bartovic from the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Copenhagen, Denmark.…

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News • Surprising similarities

These are the top 25 medical lab tests around the world

A recent study can help governments understand which diagnostic laboratory tests are most important when developing universal health coverage systems. Researchers from five countries found that diagnostic laboratory tests are used similarly around the world, even though the institutions they studied differed in terms of poverty levels, health systems and prevalence of disease. “Even though…

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News • Survival of the fittest

How bacteria can adapt to resist antibiotic treatment

In a joint collaboration, researchers from Denmark and Switzerland have shown that bacteria produce a specific stress molecule, divide more slowly, and thus save energy when they are exposed to antibiotics. The new knowledge is expected to form the basis for development of a new type of antibiotics. All free-living organisms are under constant pressure to survive. Darwin dubbed this…

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News • AACC Disruptive Technology Award

Developers take diagnostics to the patient

Over the last several years, technological advancements have enabled the development of tests that can be performed right where the patient is, whether that’s in a hospital room, primary care office, or community health center. This is a paradigm shift in healthcare delivery that will make it easier for patients to get accurate diagnoses and treatment, and could especially benefit patients in…

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News • Air disinfection and purification device

Closing the infection control loop

Novaerus, an Irish company specialising in non-chemical air disinfection using patented ultra-low energy plasma, announced the launch of the Defend 1050, a portable, easy to use device ideal for rapid disinfection and purification of the air in large spaces and high-risk situations such as operating theatres, ICUs, IVF labs, emergency and waiting rooms, and construction zones.

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News • New function assessment

Measuring immune cell response within minutes

T cells fight pathogens and tumors: Researchers from the Universities of Tübingen and Lübeck present a simple and fast method to rapidly assess their function. Due to its simplicity, reliability and versatility, it could be broadly implemented for basic research and in the clinical setting. Methods so far to test T-cell response were technically cumbersome and time-consuming and therefore only…

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News • Infections

Tuberculosis: new substance to counteract antimicrobial resistance

Antimicrobial resistance is on the rise worldwide. This is becoming a problem for infectious diseases like tuberculosis as there are only a few active substances available to combat such diseases. Pharmacists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) have now found a way to increase the efficacy of a common tuberculosis agent while, at the same time, reducing resistance to it. The…

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Article • The impact of AI

Radiology and radiologists: a painful divorce

AI-based applications will replace radiologists in some areas, the physicist Bram van Ginneken predicts. ‘The profession of radiologist will change profoundly,’ predicts Gram van Ginneken, Professor of Medical Image Analysis at Radboud University Medical Centre. The cause is automatic image analysis by computers (first published in a paper in 1963) and deep learning.

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News • Tuberculosis

New blood test predicts TB onset up to two years in advance

A new blood test has been found to more accurately predict the development of tuberculosis up to two years before its onset in people living with someone with active TB, according to research published online in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, an American Thoracic Society journal. Those living with someone with active TB are at highest risk for developing the…

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Sponsored • A discipline transforming

Adding value with AI in medical imaging

In the next five to 10 years, artificial intelligence is likely to fundamentally transform diagnostic imaging. This will by no means replace radiologists, but rather help to meet the rising demand for imaging examinations, prevent diagnostic errors, and enable sustained productivity increases.

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News • New data

WHO: High levels of antibiotic resistance found worldwide

WHO’s first release of surveillance data on antibiotic resistance reveals high levels of resistance to a number of serious bacterial infections in both high- and low-income countries. WHO’s new Global Antimicrobial Surveillance System (GLASS) reveals widespread occurrence of antibiotic resistance among 500 000 people with suspected bacterial infections across 22 countries.

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News • Infectious disease

One in two people living with HIV in Europe is diagnosed late

The WHO European Region is the only region worldwide where the number of new HIV infections is rising. With more than 160 000 people newly diagnosed with HIV across the Region, including more than 29 000 new cases from the European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA), this trend continued in 2016. One reason for this worrying trend: over half (51%) of the reported HIV diagnoses happen in a…

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News • Clinical trial

A simple breath test could evolve breast cancer diagnostics

The University of Southern California (USC) Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center is actively recruiting for a clinical trial that is researching the effectiveness of a breath test for breast cancer diagnostics. The BreathLink device, manufactured by Menssana Research, Inc., captures a two-minute sample of a patient’s breath and provides immediate results on whether there are indications of breast…

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News • Strategic cooperation

SpeeDx and Cepheid announce partnership on European distribution

SpeeDx Pty, Ltd. announced an agreement with Cepheid for distribution of its PlexPCRTM and ResistancePlusTM molecular diagnostic products in key markets throughout Europe. The agreement, covering Germany, France, Italy, and the UK, will increase coverage for the market-leading ResistancePlus MG test, the first CE-IVD test for Mycoplasma genitalium to combine detection with testing for…

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Article • Drug delivery

Biotherapeutics strike cancer cell growth

Many drug treatments do not work due to their poor ability to reach their intended targets inside patients’ cells. To address this, researchers at Cardiff University’s Schools of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Biosciences have designed a highly efficient method to improve the delivery of therapeutic molecules into diseased cells such as those in stomach cancer, breast cancer and…

News • Herpes zoster

Shingles doubles stroke risk for several years

The study by researchers from the Department of Neurology at the University of Ulsan College of Medicine in Seoul showed that herpes zoster infection not only raised the risk of ischaemic and haemorrhagic stroke but also that of a transient ischaemic attack (TIA), a warning mini-stroke often preceding a full-blown stroke.

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Article • Disaster areas

Winners on the firing line

Jens Hahn MD is an Internal Medicine and Intensive Care Specialist who works with the international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF in English: Doctors Without Borders). Here he describes his work in Afghanistan and South Sudan, and the use of rapid diagnostic tests in the field.

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Article • Politics

Medics urged to organise refugee screening

Thousands upon thousands of humans have taken and are continuing to take flight from wars, persecution and economic stress, seeking the chance of survival in European and other countries. They arrive not only physically exhausted, but also in mourning for those killed in their own countries, or during hellish journeys – therefore many also suffer unimaginable mental traumas. Clearly they need…

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News • EADV Symposium

Dermatologists and Venereologists discuss refugee crisis

The 13th Symposium of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, which opened its doors last Thursday 19th May and took place in Athens, Greece, came to a conclusion yesterday, after more than 2,000 participants benefited from a series of scientific sessions focusing on the latest developments in Dermatology and Venereology.

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Article • Refugees

The major healthcare challenge

The refugee wave rolls on with no ebb in sight. For many, Germany remains their travel destination. In August and September alone, tens of thousands refugees arrived in Munich, presenting the Bavarian capital with a major challenge: How could the city provide initial medical care for everyone? While the German Asylum Procedure Act governs the appropriate procedures, in this unprecedented…

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New funding for Ebola hides an ongoing decline

A new report gives the first ever picture of global investment in Ebola research and development (R&D), reporting that this investment might have come at the expense of efforts to develop drugs, vaccines and diagnostics for other neglected diseases, which collectively cause more than six million deaths every year in developing countries.

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Interview • Evolution

On the cusp of Medicine 4.0

In the world of technology, the term Industry 4.0 is already well known. Univ-Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Bernhard Wolf has reveals a comparable development in medicine. Smart systems and personalisation have enormous potential, the Professor for Medical Electronics at the Technical University of Munich is convinced.

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Article • Infectious diseases

Developing vaccines and nanotechnology

Vaccination remains one of the most efficient strategies against infectious diseases, often being the best protection against infections such as hepatitis B, or influenza. European Hospital reports on expert reviews of vaccines in the pipeline and the potential of nanomedicine given during the Spanish Society of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology (SEIMC) annual meeting in…

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News • Aspergillus

ESCMID cautions that Europe is now a hotbed of global fungal resistance

ESCMID Fungal Infection Study Group (EFISG) argues that fungal resistance now represents a huge healthcare threat – with many cases remaining massively undiagnosed even in the developed world – and that there is a rising prevalence of the most invasive and deadly forms. Conversely, in the developing world we are seeing very treatable fungal infections killing huge numbers – half a million…

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Article • Politics

Antibiotic resistance is a threat to global health

Within 15 years effective antibiotics will run out and, far from being an apocalyptic fantasy, a world in which common infections and minor injuries can kill is a very real possibility for the 21st Century. Geoff Sussman, one of the world’s foremost wound experts has warned that antibiotic resistance is posing the biggest single threat to global health. Report: Mark Nicholls

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Test could identify resistant tuberculosis faster

The time needed to genetically sequence the bacteria causing tuberculosis (Mtb) from patient samples has been reduced from weeks to days using a new technique developed by a team at University College London (UCL). This could help health service providers to better treat disease, control transmission of this infection, and monitor outbreaks.

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Article • Preamble

Keeping up with an ever-evolving science

Expecting 10,000 participants, prior to the 25th European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID) in Copenhagen, Denmark (25-28 April) its Programme Director, Professor Winfried V Kern MD, was keen to point out: ‘The findings and recommendations that emerge from this vibrant platform each year have, in the past, had a tremendous impact not only on guidelines and best…

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News • New guidance

Contact precautions for hospital visitors

Leading infectious diseases experts have released new guidance for healthcare facilities looking to establish precautions for visitors of patients with infectious diseases. The guidance looks to reduce the potential for healthcare visitors in spreading dangerous bacteria within the healthcare facility and community. The recommendations are published online in Infection Control & Hospital…

News • Fighting Infection

WHO joins ESCMID to fight global infections

The European Society for Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID) has been joined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to launch the 7th annual ‘International Day for Fighting Infection’ (April 24th, 2015). This year’s event sees the European society exploring vaccines as a possible solution in the global, cross-border fight against antimicrobial resistance.

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Nobel Prize awarded to Robert Koch Foundation Laureate

The Robert Koch Foundation congratulates Professor Shinya Yamanaka, the 2008 Robert Koch Award laureate, on being awarded this year’s Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The award to Yamanaka brings the number of Robert Koch Foundation laureates to receive a Nobel Prize to 11 since 1962.

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System identifies more pathogens and antimicrobial resistances than any other

By integrating all necessary pre-analytical and analytical steps into one solution, the recently CE-marked Unyvero system, which is now commercially available in Europe, provides pathogen identification and antibiotic resistance marker information without needing expert staff and a sophisticated infrastructure, its manufacturer Curetis reports. Of even greater interest is its range of targets.

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Growing presence of drug-resistant tuberculosis

Johns Hopkins experts in the prevention and treatment of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis are calling for increased screening and more rapid testing of the 9 million people worldwide estimated to be infected each year with TB, and now at risk for this form of the highly contagious lung disease.

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Sepsis – a Global Medical Emergency

The Global Sepsis Alliance (GSA) is urging healthcare providers, patients and policymakers worldwide to treat sepsis as a medical emergency. “Tens of millions of people die from sepsis each year, making it the likely leading cause of death worldwide. Sepsis kills regardless of age, ethnicity, location and access to care,” said Konrad Reinhart, M.D., Chairman of the GSA and director of the…

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MRSA - Keeping up with the neighbours

The border between Germany and the Netherlands in the so-called EUREGIO region is of no particular importance in the daily life of the people who live there. Every day, thousands commute between towns and cities in both countries, to work, shop or even receive medical treatment. The latter, however, presents Dutch hospitals with a problem.

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The two faces of HIV/AIDS in the brain

The Opening Lecture at ECR always draws immense attention. On March 4th, it was the “First Lady of Radiology” as Congress President M. Szczerbo-Trojanowska called her, Professor Dr Anne G. Osborn, University of Utah, USA, who opened the event. The internationally renowned doctor of diagnostic neuroradiology spoke about “The two faces of HIV/AIDS in the brain” – a matter close to her…

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Communicable disease programmes in Europe

One of the main topics at Health Forum Gastein 2009 was the way in which various healthcare systems struggle to cope with communicable diseases and their prevention. During the event, Dr Hans Kluge, Head of the Country Policies and Systems Unit, at the WHO regional office for Europe, spoke with Meike Lerner about omnipresent factors that work against effective TB and HIV/AIDS prevention…

Controlling infectious diseases in north-east Europe

Several years ago the Partners of the Northern Dimension Partnership in Public Health and Social Well-being (NDPHS) was organised to serve the Baltic Sea region. Due to the very different levels of public healthcare systems in north-east European countries, the NDPHS decided its main mission is to reduce social and economic differences and improve quality of life and demographic issues.

European Practice Assessment wins Health Award 2009

The "European Health Award" presented this year at the European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG) goes to the European Patient Assessment (EPA) project. EPA is designed to improve the exchange of knowledge and experience by practical physicians in the area of primary care. Cross-border healthcare initiatives are distinguished every year with the European Health Award.

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International TB support from KfW Development Bank

Within the World Health Organisation European region three quarters of all new tuberculosis (TB) infections occur in Kazakhstan, Romania, Russia, Uzbekistan, the Ukraine and Turkey. The multi-resistant TB viruses, which can no longer be treated with conventional medication, are particularly common there.

Positive action in the war against MRSA

The first strain of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) was isolated in the 1960s, and its presence was reported worldwide in the late 1990s. A higher incidence of MRSA was noted in communities, at the dawn of the new millennium, leading to two basic MRSA strains being differentiated - CA-MRSA (community acquired MRSA) and HA-MRSA (healthcare associated MRSA). In clinical practice…

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GE's new Discovery PET/CT 600 scanners go global

GE Healthcare's first Discovery PET/CT 600-series scanners are being installed in a number of leading clinics around the world. "This first set of installations is a big step forward in the diagnosis and monitoring of disease", said Terri Bresenham, newly appointed vice- president and general manager of GE Healthcare's global Molecular Imaging business.

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Drug resistant tuberculosis test within hours

GenoType® MTBDR plus, a new molecular test for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis has recently been approved in Europe. The test, developed by the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) and Hain Lifescience, offers a fast solution to detect MDR-TB and XDR-TB at a reasonable price, a good condition for the application in poorer countries.

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ESCAIDE 2008

For the second time the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) in Stockholm, Sweden, invites to the European Scientific Conference on Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology (ESCAIDE). The ECDC published now a forecast about expectations and the global hot topics of the international event in Berlin, November 19-21.

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India's world experts on TB

Every three minutes, two people living in India die of tuberculosis. This equates to approximately 370,000 deaths each year, and a staggering economic toll: an estimated US$300 million in direct costs and US$3 billion in indirect costs.

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Nurses receive award for their work in tuberculosis

By putting the World TB Day slogan 'I am stopping TB' into action, 11 nurses have earned the 2008 ICN/Lilly Award, for their outstanding work in fighting tuberculosis (TB) and multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB)[1]. The award recipients come from six TB affected countries: from Kenya (Diana Jelegat Kipsoisoi), Lesotho (Likhapha Ntlamelle ), Malawi (Chrisie Bwazi, Rodwell Gundo and Shouts Simeza),…

Inhaled TB vaccine

USA - A new tuberculosis vaccine successfully tested at the University of North Carolina (UNC) is easier to administer and store and just as effective as one commonly used worldwide, according to research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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analytica 2008

Analytica, to be held in Munich for the 21st time, has become a leading international trade fair for instrumental analysis, laboratory technology and biotechnology, showcasing the entire range of equipment, solutions and services for laboratories in industry and research. About 400 exhibitors will fill five halls in the New Munich Trade Fair Centre.

Tracking TB bacterium from space

TB bacterium have a unique chemical coating and it is hoped that a tiny gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (GC-MS) - a detection device* developed for the Beagle 2, on its mission to Mars - will be able to pick this out from space, in a project run by Britain's Open University and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

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Virtual TB bacillus should help finding new drugs

Today little is known about the metabolism of the tuberculosis bacillus and, because of its slow growth, experiments for new drugs take a long time. Now a team of researchers form the University of Surrey built an in silico model of the agent that causes TB - a virtual TB bacillus - that promises to speed up the drug discovery process.

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A 'World Health Insurance'

In a recently published article, a team from Médecines Sans Frontières have suggested a 'World Health Insurance' to help provide healthcare for people in poorer nations (see box). Over 50% of the 42 countries carrying that healthcare burden would be European.

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Slovakia

Slovakia was part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire until 1918, when Czechs and Slovaks were brought together to form the Czechoslovak Republic. After World War II, and up to 1948, the country was still part of Europe, but then fell behind the 'Iron Curtain'. From 1989 it began 'knocking on the EU door' and entry was granted in 2003. Today Slovakia's population is around 5.38 million. To serve…

Help for the helpers

Healthcare systems in Africa are facing a huge threat in their fight against AIDS - an increasing shortfall of nursing staff. Workers are either infected themselves or can no longer cope with the daily fight against the disease. Despite this, there is hope - the first wellness centre for healthcare workers, which provides medical and psychological help to nursing staff and their families, was…

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