Recently scientists have discovered that a little molecule called Triclosan can help us eradicate a condition that affects 2 billion people around the world (we are only 6.7 billion total right?). A parasitic infection called toxoplasmosis affects those many people is caused by a protozoan Toxoplasma gondii.
A total of 11% of the population in the US and up to 80% of the people in Brazil suffer by toxoplasmosis. Domestic cats are primary carriers, but many animals and humans also can carry the bug. It can pass on from even mother to the baby in the womb :( It causes morbidity and mortality to some extent, although it is a nuisance to the bigger extent.
A group of researchers are contending obese kids may not be the result of lax parenting or a junk-food culture; obesity may have an infectious origin, according to a cross-sectional study by University of California, San Diego School of Medicine researchers who correlate children exposed to a particular strain of adenovirus, human adenovirus 36 (HAdV-36 or AD-36), being significantly more likely to be obese with some causation.
"We hear a lot about bioterrorism and pandemics," says Sheldon H. Jacobson, a professor of computer science and pediatrics at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,"but the fact of the matter is, the threat to routine immunization is one of the greatest threats we face. If we had problems with our vaccine supply chain, it would have the potential to cause more deaths than any of those other issues."
Much of the predicted future of neurotechnology is grounded in the continuing success and development of nanotechnology. This field is broad, for sure, and is even a primary target of the US Federal Government (see the NNI).
Being married has been associated with improving health but a new study suggests that having that long-term bond alters hormones in a way that reduces stress - but you don't need to buy a ring just yet; unmarried people in a committed relationship show the same reduced responses to stress, said Dario Maestripieri, Professor in Comparative Human Development at the University of Chicago and lead author of a new study in Stress.
One of the biggest challenges of transplants is the need to suppress the immune response - so the new organ is not rejected - while keeping it strong enough to be able to fight all kinds of disease. As the high numbers of rejected organs show, this is a tricky balance. But a discovery by Maria Monteiro and Luis Graça, two Portuguese scientists, could help solving the problem, at least in the liver. They have found a new type of white blood cell – baptised NKTreg (reg from regulatory) – that, remarkably, once activated, migrate into this organ where it suppress any immune response in its vicinity (but not elsewhere).
Portuguese scientists have just published a revolutionary new approach to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA) which, if translated to humans, can change the way we treat autoimmunity (and so diseases like RA but also diabetes and MS) and, with it, the lives of millions of patients
The new treatment by Joana Duarte, Luis Graca and colleagues from the Instituto de Medicina Molecular (IMM) in Lisbon is remarkable because it specifically stops the abnormal immunological response behind RA without touching the rest of the immune system, and a short treatment has long lasting effects suggesting that it might even cure the disease.
Scientists have developed a new influenza vaccine that may one day eliminate the need for seasonal flu shots. The new findings were published in the inaugural issue of mBio.
The current seasonal influenza vaccine is strain-specific, targeting the globular head of the hemaglutinin (HA) molecule on the surface of the influenza virus. This globular head is highly variable and constantly changing from strain to strain. Each flu season presents a different strain, making it necessary to adjust the vaccine each year.
Bone marrow cells play a critical role in fighting respiratory viruses, making the bone marrow a potential therapeutic target, especially in people with compromised immune systems, say researchers writing in Cell Host&Microbe. They have found that during infections of the respiratory tract, cells produced by the bone marrow are instructed by proteins to migrate to the lungs to help fight infection. The data are published in the current issue of.
Researchers writing in BMC Immunology suggest that the end of smallpox vaccination in the mid-20th century may have caused a loss of protection that contributed to the rapid contemporary spread of HIV.
A team led by Raymond Weinstein, researcher at George Mason University, looked at the ability of white blood cells taken from people recently immunized with vaccinia to support HIV replication compared to unvaccinated controls. They found significantly lower viral replication in blood cells from vaccinated individuals. Weinstein said, "There have been several proposed explanations for the rapid spread of HIV in Africa, including wars, the reuse of unsterilized needles and the contamination of early batches of polio vaccine.