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Posts Tagged "vaccine"

Cross-Check

Michele Bachmann Wasn’t Totally Wrong about HPV Vaccines

vaccine dose of Gardasil

One of my guilty pleasures in this run-up to the next U.S. presidential election is watching proudly ignorant Republican wannabes like Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann lashing out at each other instead of Obama. The Minnesota representative recently attacked the Texas governor for proposing in 2007 that pre-pubescent girls in his state be vaccinated against [...]

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Guest Blog

Mandatory Shots: Should Hospitals Force Health Care Workers to Get the Flu Vaccine?

A growing number of U.S. hospitals now compel health care workers to get vaccinated against the flu and other infectious diseases to protect patients from communicable diseases. In the case of the flu, the need is obvious: hospitalized patients who become infected have an elevated risk of developing complications or dying. Yet the vaccination requirement [...]

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Observations

Getting Killed for Saving Lives

Three suicide bombers stormed the office of the International Red Cross in Jalabad, Afghanistan earlier today and at least one guard has been killed. No one has so far claimed responsibility, but al-Qaeda has targeted the group in the past whereas the Taliban has not, according to the Wall Street Journal. The incident follows an [...]

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Observations

Shootings May Threaten Global Polio Eradication Effort

pakistan polio vaccine killings

The deaths this week of nine polio vaccine workers in Pakistan at the hands of gunmen indicate a threat not only to workers but also to the effort to eradicate the disease—locally and globally. Earlier this year, the international push to eradicate the crippling—and sometimes deadly—childhood disease from its final holdouts (Pakistan, Nigeria and Afghanistan) was [...]

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Observations

New Salmonella strain delivers gene-based therapy to fight virus in mice

salmonella can be used to transport gene-therapy antivirals

Most people do their best to avoid contact with Salmonella. This bacteria genus, which often lives on poultry and can find its way into other food products, causes hundreds of thousands of illnesses—and hundreds of deaths—in the U.S. each year. But new research demonstrates that this common food pathogen could be disarmed and reconfigured as [...]

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Observations

Transgenic chickens get bird flu without passing it on

transgenic gm chicken that could help stop the spread of bird avian flu

Researchers have engineered a new type of chicken that might help prevent the spread of bird flu—a worrisome virus that has already caused extensive economic harm on farms, especially in Asia, and that could lead to a pandemic in humans. Many farmers have gone to great lengths to prevent a poultry-based pandemic, but the newest [...]

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Observations

Flu vaccine: A shortage that didn’t have to be?

The note on the receptionist’s desk at my doctor’s office was quite emphatic: there was no vaccine to give, either for the H1N1 swine flu or the seasonal variety. If I wanted to yell and scream, the note advised, I should call my congressman, rather than give the staff an earful. Several explanations can account [...]

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Observations

Sick-clop: Ponies with the flu show how virus out-mutates vaccines

pony influenza vaccine

Despite millions of needle jabs to bolster flu immunity each year, the efficient influenza virus continues to evolve to get around these biological blockades by altering its surface proteins. As people in a population become immune to the virus through vaccination or exposure, however, they change how the virus mutates and, ultimately, the chances of [...]

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Observations

Is an HPV vaccine for boys cost-effective?

gardasil hpv vaccine boys cost

An advisory panel for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved the use of Gardasil, a vaccine for the human papillomavirus (HPV), for use in males. A new study, published yesterday in the British Medical Journal, found, however, that a public health campaign to vaccinate boys—in addition to girls, who have been receiving [...]

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Observations

First H1N1 vaccines to arrive Tuesday

nasal swine flu vaccine arrive tuesday

The first doses of approved vaccines for the H1N1 "swine" flu will start trickling in across the U.S. on Tuesday. The first to arrive, 600,000 doses of MedImmune’s FluMist nasal spray, will be for healthy people ages two to 49, the Associated Press reported. "This is really just the beginning," Anne Schuchat, director of the [...]

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Octopus Chronicles

No Shots for the Octopus, Its Immune System Doesn’t Remember

octopus immune system shots

Flu season is almost upon us, so millions of us are already rolling up our sleeves to get the annual shot. This jab is formulated to introduce our immune system to this year’s circulating strains of the virus so that it will remember how to make the specialized antibodies to fend it off the viral [...]

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Symbiartic

Pro-Vaccine Communication: You’re Doing it Wrong

© Glendon Mellow

A particular drum I like to beat, is about science communicators learning how to use images effectively. Give your blog post illustration some thought. Don’t just stick any old candied cherry on the top of your post: make sure it’s the right maraschino cherry. Then add sprinkles. If you are having trouble finding good images [...]

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The White Noise

Introducing an addiction-free society of the future

Syringes

A fictionalized essay on how I imagine the world to be with the advent of addiction vaccines: You open your front door wide, take in the crisp morning air. It’s going to be a beautiful day. You hear they’ve perfected a vaccine against drugs. You smile wide, happy and can nearly see the pink tinge [...]

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