Scientists from Imperial College London and the University of Edinburgh have used gene-editing techniques to stop the bird flu virus from spreading, in chicken cells grown in the lab.
Scientists from Imperial College London and the University of Edinburgh have used gene-editing techniques to stop the bird flu virus from spreading, in chicken cells grown in the lab.
Researchers at the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford have discovered a new molecule that plays a key role in the immune response that is triggered by influenza infections.
In patients with kidney failure, influenza-like illness (ILI) likely contributes to more than 1,000 deaths per year. The finding, which comes from a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN), points to the importance of protection against, surveillance of, and, where possible, treatment of such infections in patients with kidney dysfunction.…
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…
A genetic mutation that a Chinese scientist attempted to create in twin babies born last year, ostensibly to help them fend off HIV infection, is also associated with a 21% increase in mortality in later life, according to an analysis by scientists from UC Berkeley. The researchers scanned more than 400,000 genomes and associated health records contained in a British database, UK Biobank, and…
Sixty-two percent of Germans fear antibiotic resistance, according to a survey recently conducted by the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. ‘Patients colonised by multi-resistant pathogens are particularly scared. But many of these fears are rooted in misunderstandings,’ explained Professor Mathias Pletz, Director of the Institute of Infection Medicine and Hospital Hygiene at…
Insufficient knowledge of infection control, resulting in insufficient compliance, increases the risk of hospital acquired infections (HAIs) and multiresistant pathogens that put patients at risk. At the 2019 Annual General Meeting of the German Society for Hygiene and Microbiology e.V. (DGHM) in Göttingen, Professor Frauke Mattner, Senior Consultant at the Institute of Hygiene, Kliniken der…
Antibiotics are mostly prescribed for acute respiratory infections (ARIs), yet most of these infections are viral. A new study shows that inappropriate antibiotics prescriptions are widespread, contributing dangerously helping antibiotic-resistant organisms to grow. Overuse could be due to attitudes among patients and clinicians, current George Washington University research suggests.
By developing a new technique for labeling the gene segments of influenza viruses, researchers now know more about how influenza viruses enter the cell and establish cell co-infections - a major contributing factor to potential pandemic development.
Scientists at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health developed a system to accurately predict the geographic spread of seasonal influenza in the United States up to six weeks ahead of time.
Cells can be programmed like a computer to fight cancer, influenza, and other serious conditions – thanks to a breakthrough in synthetic biology by the University of Warwick.
Greece, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Scotland, Spain and Switzerland are the first European countries affected by an increase of the influenza virus. Other countries will follow over the coming weeks and should prepare.
WHO has been carefully monitoring the spread of influenza A (H1N1) and has now raised the alert level to level 6. Raising the alert to level 6 is a measure of geographical spread of the virus and not a measure of its severity. At this time, WHO considers the overall severity of the situation to be moderate.
As concern over the potential mutation of the latest form of influenza virus continues to vex governments and their healthcare organisations, WHO 2009 data has shown that acute respiratory infections, influenza and respiratory syncitial virus (RSV) epidemics coincide with epidemics of S. pneumoniae. In fact, half or more of flu-associated mortality in the 1918-1919 Spanish Flu epidemic is…
Researchers have developed techniques to detect Lyme disease bacteria weeks sooner than current tests, allowing patients to start treatment earlier. The new techniques can detect an active infection with the Lyme bacteria faster than the three weeks it takes for the current indirect antibody-based tests, which have been a standard since 1994. Another advantage of the new tests is that a positive…
Australia's national science agency CSIRO has identified a new gene that plays a critical role in regulating the body's immune response to infection and disease.
Roche Applied Science announced the availability of a new detection kit for the Influenza A/H1N1 virus. The detection kit is offered for use in life science research. Roche currently is filing to get approval of the local health authorities worldwide for use of the kit in emergency situations.
Researchers have discovered that secondary infection with the Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacterium (or “superbug”) often kills influenza patients because the flu virus alters the antibacterial response of white blood cells, causing them to damage the patients’ lungs instead of destroying the bacterium. The study suggests that inhibiting this response may help treat…
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.
Influenza infects around 20% of the US population and results in 200,000 hospitalisations annually. It kills about 36,000 citizens. In the USA, only 36% of all healthcare workers are immunised against influenza annually, and now the American College of Physicians (ACP)
The next flu season will come. To prevent high-risk people from infections, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) recently published a final guidance on the use of the drugs oseltamivir, amantadine and zanamivir for the prophylaxis of influenza. "But vaccination is the main way to prevent flu", says Gillian Leng, NICE Deputy Chief Executive.
Unlike some news reports the Ebola virus is not as easily transmitted as influenza or other infections. Still, healthcare and laboratory workers must take precautions to quickly identify those infected and prevent an outbreak. Report: Lisa Chamoff
Fortunately, the influenza virus has not swapped over to Germany yet because the country has enough to do with the norovirus which is expected to attack up to one million people during the next weeks. People affected by the virus suffer from strong nausea and diarrhoea that last at least two days.
Each year, public health officials monitor the spread of influenza to identify which flu strains need to go into that year’s vaccines and where outbreaks will occur. But it can be difficult to predict how bad a particular flu season will be until people actually start getting sick. A new flu forecasting tool built by scientists at the University of Chicago aims to make better predictions by…
Injections, that's everyday business for the men and women working in healthcare. As long as it is the patients who have to face the needle, it seems. Like in the years before Dr Heinzpeter Moecke, medical director of Asklepios Klinik Nord-Heidberg in Hamburg, Germany, set an example for his staff and had a vaccination.
Respiratory protection for hospital staff is a critical issue. Surgical masks were at one time considered sufficient, but new evidence from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that they do almost nothing to protect the individual wearer. In response to the outbreak of Swine Origin Influenza Virus the CDC recommends all healthcare personnel to wear a fit-tested disposable…
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…
During the race to produce vaccines against evolving influenza viruses the slowness of their manufacture has turned producers more sharply towards cell culture technology. Using the traditional process, fertilised chicken eggs must first be inoculated with live flu virus, then the resulting egg-adapted virus must be purified and inactivated to produce trivalent inactivated virus (TIV), during…
Using computer-based simulations and mouse experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI) in Braunschweig and at the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg (OVGU), have disentangled the effects of pro-inflammatory signalling molecules on the postinfluenza susceptibility to pneumococcal coinfection.
This year’s unexpectedly aggressive flu season reminds everyone that although the flu vaccine can reduce the number of people who contract the virus, it is still not 100 percent effective. Researchers report that a tweak to a small-molecule drug shows promise for future production of new antiviral therapies that could help patients, regardless of the strain with which they are infected. The…
Summer colds might seem rare, but people are actually just as likely to catch one in the summer as in the winter.
Partners who could hardly be further apart – yet have a lot in common – have united to fight resistant pathogens. The International Consortium for Anti-Infective Research (iCAIR) was founded last January. Hanover Medical School (MHH) and the Fraunhofer-Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine (ITEM) are participants in Germany. The third partner, the Institute for Glycomics (IfG) at…
Globalisation has been a defining term in this 21st century: with almost anybody able to visit any place at any time, diseases, viruses and bacteria can be travel companions. Thus virology is gaining increased attention. Professor Barbara Gärtner, President of the German Association of Virology, talks about the issues and challenges arising from this development.
Health chiefs are failing to investigate a clear pattern of rising death rates and worsening health outcomes in England and Wales, argue experts in The BMJ today. Lucinda Hiam at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Danny Dorling at the University of Oxford say weekly mortality figures show 10,375 additional deaths (a rise of 12.4%) in England and Wales in the first seven…
For many of us, a flu shot is a fall routine. Roll up a sleeve, take a needle to the upper arm and hope this year’s vaccine matches whichever viruses circulate through the winter. The most common method to make that vaccine is now more than 70 years old. It requires growing viruses in special, pathogen-free chicken eggs. It’s not a quick and easy manufacturing process. And, at best, it…
Saliva is no way to pass a Zika virus infection. According to researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison who conducted studies with monkeys, casual contact like kissing or sharing a fork or spoon is not enough for the virus to move between hosts.
Ebola outbreaks are set to be managed quickly and efficiently – saving lives – with a new approach developed by an international team of researchers, including the University of Warwick, which helps to streamline outbreak decision-making.
Swine flu has been confirmed in a number of countries and it is spreading from human to human, which could lead to what is referred to as a pandemic flu outbreak. Pandemic flu is different from ordinary flu because it's a new flu virus that appears in humans and spreads very quickly from person to person worldwide. On Wednesday, the World Health Organization raised the pandemic threat Level to 5…
Scientists from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have developed an algorithm that functions like a Rosetta Stone to help decipher how the immune system recognizes and binds antigens. The research should aid development of more personalized cancer immunotherapy and advance diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases.
Over recent years, virology, once medicine‘s step-child, moved into the limelight, pushed by impressive progress and pulled by globalisation-induced need for expertise in virus diagnostics and viral epidemics.
During our European Hospital interview with specialist in microbiology, virology and infection epidemiology Beniam Ghebremedhin MD, from the University Hospital Wuppertal, spoke about the impact of migration on infections, and ways to tackle the problem of multiresistant pathogens. ‘There is a lack of specialists in infectious diseases, for direct patient care on hospital wards as well as in…
Dutch virologist Ron Fouchier and his colleagues around the world stopped their research into the bird flu virus H5N1 for a whole year to allow an international debate surrounding the benefits and risks of their work.
Professor Hans Clevers, researcher and group leader at the Hubrecht Institute in Utrecht, the Netherlands, invented the organoids, a ground-breaking new technique to grow new ‘organs’ and to test medication.
The European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Disease (ESCMID) is calling on the healthcare industry to lead by example and implement universal flu vaccination for healthcare workers. ESCMID is encouraging all health workers to take personal responsibility and get vaccinated this season, particularly those who come into contact with high-risk groups.
Monitoring and rapidly introducing new developments into everyday practice is an increasingly difficult task for many doctors. Additionally, patients are more informed due to media medical reports, which raise their expectations that doctors can offer a quick, reliable interpretation of the latest medical data.
By performing just a single test healthcare personnel is now able to simultaneously detect eighteen of the most prevalent respiratory infections in patients. The Seeplex 18-plex Respiratory Test is a highly economical method for molecular diagnostics of respiratory infections. It achieves results rapidly at minimal costs per test.
In a comprehensive and complex molecular study of blood samples from Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, published in Cell Host and Microbe, a scientific team led by the University of Wisconsin–Madison has identified signatures of Ebola virus disease that may aid in future treatment efforts. Conducting a sweeping analysis of everything from enzymes to lipids to immune-system-associated molecules,…
Czech Republic - The US firm Baxter International Inc. is to establish a production facility to produce a quite unique vaccine in CR. First discussed in December 2005, the plan appears to have made a significant step forward. Baxter specialises in medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology, and globally employs around 48,000 people in 64 manufacturing facilities, which include those in…
USA - Scientists are confident that the virus that caused severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is no longer circulating in humans, or other animals, according to Professor Kathryn Holmes, a microbiology expert at the University of Colorado, USA.
USA - A new technology, named glycan microarray, can identify pathogens in a few hours and give advance warning of the ability of a virus to infect humans.
Do you remember your mother saying “cover your mouth when you cough”? Probably you do, because this exhortation accompanies the whole childhood. Maybe it is a kind of protest then, that in adulthood this simple rule is not followed by many. The British Department of Health now started a new campaign “Coughs and Sneezes spread Diseases” and calls for a better cold behaviour.
A banana a day may not keep the doctor away, but a substance originally found in bananas and carefully edited by scientists could someday fight off a wide range of viruses, new research suggests. And the process used to create the virus-fighting form may help scientists develop even more drugs, by harnessing the “sugar code” that our cells use to communicate. That code gets hijacked by…
Governmental fear of an avian 'flu pandemic remains high, and a certain amount of vaccine has been stockpiled to meet sudden demand.
The next pandemia will come - rather sooner than later. The respiratory protection of frontline staff is a major part of healthcare facilities' preparation. To assist hospitals, ECRI Institute and the International Association of Healthcare Safety and Security present the web conference "Respiratory Protection: Preparing for Pandemic Flu" on July 17, 2008.
In recent years, we have witnessed multiple epidemics of viral diseases such as Ebola or Zika. Rapid targeted intervention is key to containment. Real-time data integration and analysis can help public health authorities to maximize efficacy of intervention strategies. Dr. Richard Neher from the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology, Germany and Dr. Trevor Bedford from the Fred…
Although receding since late March, the 2012-13 seasonal flu epidemic in metropolitan France, appears to be the longest in some 30 years, even if it did not strike the highest numbers, according to the monitoring network Sentinelles-Inserm.
AIDS, SARS and now H5NI; just a brief beginning or the end? As the virus moves towards Europe, and millions of birds are slaughtered, interest has risen in a Chinese herb, a patent-sharing controversy and drug stockpiling
Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) is a major health problem globally. A new test now quickly identify pathogens. BinaxNOW tests quickly identify pathogens
Pal International, which has manufactured a wide range of hygiene products and protective clothing for over three decades and currently supplies products to over 70 countries, has launched a new range of healthcare wipes that are compliant with the Medical Devices Directive (93/42/EEC), international quality standard ISO13485:2003 and carry the CE mark.
Last week, the Commissioner for Health, Androulla Vassiliou launched the 'Europe for Patients' campaign in Brussels. The campaign highlights the different health policy initiatives the Commission intends to adopt in the coming months. All these initiatives are bound by a common goal: better healthcare for all in Europe.
Frost & Sullivan Life Sciences Senior Research Analyst Sriram Radhakrishnan discusses the available screening options to enable early detection of the virus.
Bacteria, viruses and fungi are killed on copper surfaces within seconds. This powerful germicidal effect, termed ‘contact killing’, is increasingly noted by hospitals due to several recent studies that confirm its antimicrobial effects.
Well-known wipes manufacturer, Pal International Ltd, which produces various healthcare disinfectant and cleaning wipes, is launching a new range of healthcare wipes, all complying with the Medical Devices Directive (93/42/EEC), international quality standard ISO13485:2003 and carrying the CE mark.
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.
Bayer and its affiliated firm Icon Genetics developed an own production process which provides the opportunity to make therapeutic proteins from tobacco plants. The pilot plant for biotech drugs opened on June 16 in Halle, Saxony-Anhalt.
Dr Christiane Eickelberg, of the University of Giessen Lung Centre (UGLC), outlines the centre's research projects, aims and academic offerings
Half a million square feet. More than 350 beds. And tomorrow, they clean it all over again. Every day, Environmental Services (EVS) staff members work to disinfect every surface in Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, playing a crucial behind-the-scenes role in preventing infections and keeping patients safe. Now, on top of scrubbing, spraying, mopping and wiping, they can add another action –…
Professionals back EU-wide action on cross-border health emergencies: A new cross-border Health Security initiative should refine EU preparations for, and response to, health crises ranging from terrorist attacks to SARS epidemics, experts reported at the European Health Forum Gastein. If Europe was to be serious about facing up to major threats a real change of mind-set was of the essence,…
Engineers from the University of Michigan are seeking to develop a "lab-on-a-chip" kit that people can assemble on their own. It could bring a new generation of instant home tests checking out for illnesses, food contaminants and toxic gases.
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.
Critically ill children hospitalised with traumatic injuries have a high risk of acquiring nosocomial infections, especially if their immune function is impaired. A nosocomial infection, such as sepsis, can become as deadly as a traumatic injury, the leading cause of death in children. Report: Cynthia E Keen
Johns Hopkins scientists have developed three new Web-based software tools designed to help hospital emergency departments, first responder organizations and others model and prepare for major disasters, including flu outbreaks.
Infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) doubled at academic medical centers in the U.S. between 2003 and 2008, according to a report published in the August issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America.
In the light of global climate change, the relations between weather and health are of increasing interest. A drop in the average temperature outside is linked to a higher risk of people having heart attacks, according to a new study published on bmj.com today. UK researchers found that each 1°C reduction in temperature on a single day is associated with around 200 extra heart attacks.
As one of medicine’s largest challenges, viral infections often escape vaccines due to their natural ability to mutate rapidly and develop drug resistance easily. Many viruses, such as Zika, Ebola and dengue fever, have grown into major global health epidemics with great human and economic toll. IBM Research and Singapore’s Institute of Bioengineering, Nanotechnology (IBN) announced they have…
Researchers at Duke Health are fine-tuning a test that can determine whether a respiratory illness is caused by infection from a virus or bacteria so that antibiotics can be more precisely prescribed.
Flu preparations - Under the UK´s National Health Service (NHS) code of practice for nosocomial infections, the hospital Trusts and others are required to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that healthcare workers are free of, and protected from, exposure to communicable infections.
The fates of immune cells can be decided at the initial division of a cell. Researchers at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital have discovered that the production of daughter cells with different roles in the immune system is driven by the lopsided distribution of the signaling protein c-Myc. Nudging c-Myc in one direction or the other could make vaccines more effective or advance…
Along with a call for earlier identification and intervention in sepsis cases, intensive care consultant Dr Ron Daniels also stressed that timely intervention is cost-effective for health systems as it leads to fewer sepsis patients needing treatment in intensive care units (ICU).
There is little evidence on respiratory support with extracorporeal systems – enough of an argument for most of those doubting the procedure not to use it, or even make it available.
The known global death toll due to the new virus (as of 1 July) was 811. Total number of cases 8447.
Health always has a political dimension, as seen at two recent international events - the World Health Summit in Geneva in May and the G7 Summit in the Bavarian Alps near Garmisch at the beginning of June. Report: Anja Behringer
Although Romania joined the EU in 2007, only recently has its macroeconomic increases influenced a rise in a middle class and dented the country’s widespread poverty. However, development is still hampered by corruption and red tape in its commercial world. Report: Daniela Zimmermann/Brenda Marsh
imec, the European research centre for nanoelectronics, has linked with Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, USA, to develop the next generation of highly miniaturised medical tools.
This was the motto of the ECR 2007 in Vienna, where a group of high-ranking experts discussed diseases of the 21st century; research competition between the US and Europe; the conditions needed to progress leading medical R&D - moderated by Congress President Professor Christian J Herold.
Since its creation three years ago, the French National Alliance for Health and Life Sciences (Aviesan) has proved its full worth in scientific coordination, Annick Chapoy reports from Paris
Paul E Pepe MD MPH FACEP FCCM, Professor of Medicine, Surgery, Public Health and Chair, Emergency Medicine, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Centre and the Parkland Health and Hospital System (TSMC&PHHS), Dallas.
It kills more children than any other illness. According to UNICEF and the World Health Organisation (WHO) that includes AIDS, malaria and measles combined - yet pneumonia remains a forgotten disease. A report published by the two organisations aims to provoke action to reduce child mortality from pneumonia.
Virology is fast emerging as a key discipline within modern healthcare against a backdrop of a shifting global demographic and the impact of climate change.