Penelope Ironstone

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The World’s Worst Industrial Disaster Is Still Unfolding

In Bhopal, residents who survived the massive gas leak and those who arrived later continue to deal with the consequences.<p>In old Bhopal, not far from the small Indian city’s glitzy new shops and gorgeous lakes, is the abandoned Union Carbide factory. Here, in one ramshackle building, are hundreds …

New York State

The Mysterious Microbes in the Sky

Scientists are just beginning to understand how microscopic organisms that rise out of the ocean can help manage global temperatures.<p>It’s well known that the human gut is a thriving bacterial ecosystem—not to mention the skin, lungs, and various other parts of the body. But the breadth and depth of …

Biology

A Rare Virus Without a Cure Has Emerged in India And Is Killing People

It has the potential to cause a deadly pandemic.<p>At least nine people in southern India have died in cases linked to an outbreak of the rare and …

Disease

An Ebola Outbreak In Congo Is Spreading & Officials Are Especially Worried This Time

The last time this virus ravaged Africa, borders were sealed and even foreign health care staff were killed. The West African outbreak resulted in …

The 'Jolie Effect' Was A Game-Changer For Breast Cancer, But It Was Just A Start

Five years ago this Monday, actress and humanitarian Angelina Jolie announced to the world in a New York Times op-ed that she is a BRCA1 gene mutation carrier, and that she underwent a preventative double mastectomy to help reduce her breast cancer risk. BRCA1 and BRCA2 are tumor-suppressing genes, …

Here's What the Next Pandemic Pathogen Might Look Like

It's a nightmare scenario: An infectious disease is spreading around the world and threatening to topple civilization as we know it. But what kind of …

The great gut flora war: Why the bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract matters

<b>(Getty/ChrisChrisW)</b><p>Well-functioning intestinal flora are key to staying healthy. Here’s why<p>Lina Nertby Aurell • Mia Clase<p>April 29, 2018 9:30pm (UTC)<p>Excerpted with permission from Food Pharmacy: A Guide to Gut Bacteria, Anti-Inflammatory Foods, and Eating for Health by Lina Aurell and Mia Clase. …

No thanks to eggs: Next year's flu shot will shield only 20% against dominant strain

Protection against the dominant H3N2 flu strain offered by the coming season’s flu vaccine will still be far from optimal—putting it mildly. And …

Why your DNA test won’t reveal the real you

<i>Timothy Caulfield is a Canada Research Chair in health law and policy at University of Alberta, and author</i> <i>of</i> The Vaccination Picture <i>(Penguin, 2017).</i><p>Can a genetic test really connect you with your lost heritage? Should you change your wardrobe based on what region of the globe your genes are from? …

CDC: America's Bug Bite Problem Has Gotten Three Times Bigger

'We don’t know what will threaten Americans next."<p>Mosquito bites suck. Flea bites bite. And tick bites, uh, well they suck too. And according to a …

Public Health

Common Virus Linked To Seven Autoimmune Diseases

A growing body of research suggests that viral DNA or proteins introduced into the body can contribute toward the development of serious diseases …

Vapers and non-smokers have the same flourishing gut flora

The first study of its kind has found that people who vape have the same mix of gut bacteria as non-smokers, whilst smokers have significant changes …

Why a faecal transplant could save your life

<b>The faecal transplant, also known as trans-poo-sion, surely has the title of medicine's most disgusting procedure.</b><p>It is pretty much what you are imagining - part of a faecal stool is taken from one person and given to another.<p>The purpose is to introduce new beneficial microbes to the receiving …

The Best Flu Prevention Might Be Behavioral Economics

Alongside popular misconceptions that healthy people do not need the flu shot and myths about the harmful side effects of the vaccine, numerous studies have shown that one of the biggest reasons people don’t get vaccinated is that a physician never recommends it. (Eighty percent of patients say …

UN health agency: Hungarian scientist exposed to Ebola

LONDON (AP) — The World Health Organization says it has coordinated shipment of an experimental Ebola vaccine and drugs to treat a laboratory …

More than half your body is not human

<b>More than half of your body is not human, say scientists.</b><p>Human cells make up only 43% of the body's total cell count. The rest are microscopic colonists.<p>Understanding this hidden half of ourselves - our microbiome - is rapidly transforming understanding of diseases from allergy to Parkinson's.<p>The …

Could You Fight Off Worms? Depends On Your Gut Microbes

Our tummies are teeming with trillions of bacteria — tiny microbes that help with little things, like digesting food, and big things, like warding off disease.<p>Those same microbes may have another purpose: waging war against worms.<p>Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis made the discovery …

Biology

Bad news: Omega 3s don't confer any significant health benefits; good news: They're mostly harmless

40+ years ago a pair of Danish scientists acquired the mistaken belief that Greenlanders had a very low incidence of heart disease (turned out that …

Breast Cancer

One hundred years on from the Spanish Flu, we are facing another major pandemic

Should you meet someone who, unfortunately, has developed a fever, become short of breath, whose face appears to be tinged with blue and is subject …

Beware 'Disease X': the mystery killer keeping scientists awake at night

Over two days in early February, the World Health Organisation (WHO) convened an expert committee at its Geneva headquarters to consider the unthinkable.<p>The goal was to identify pathogens with the potential to spread and kill millions but for which there are currently no, or insufficient, …

A pond-dwelling virus just cured a man's antibiotic-resistant infection

Doctors are struggling to combat infections that have developed resistance to many antibiotics. Considering that antibiotic-resistant bacteria infect …

Stomach acid drugs may cause depression

A new study — now published in the journal <i>Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics</i> — has found a link between a common class of stomach drugs called proton …

Yale study reveals gut bacteria can spread to other organs to trigger autoimmune disease

A new study from Yale University has discovered that a certain type of gut bacteria can migrate from the gut to other parts of the body, triggering …

Scientists put on alert for deadly new pathogen – 'Disease X'

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has put scientists and health workers around the globe on alert for a new and potentially deadly pathogen – Disease X.<p>Each year the Geneva-based organisation, which is charged with monitoring and safeguarding world health, convenes a high-level meeting of senior …

Ticks Creep Into Canada, Bringing Lyme Disease (and Confusion) With Them

Reported Lyme cases in Canada increased more than six-fold between 2009 and 2016, but many patients are still struggling to get diagnosed and treated.<p>…

Disease

Genetic experts have a message for anyone thinking of taking 23andMe's new breast cancer test

The FDA on Tuesday gave the OK for 23andMe to provide a breast cancer risk report without a prescription.<p>That makes 23andme the first direct-to-consumer genetics test allowed to provide some information about your genetic risk for cancer, specifically around three mutations to the BRCA1 and BRCA2. …

Japan Just Approved a New Drug That Can Kill the Flu Virus In Just One Day

As the worst flu season in a decade rages on, a potentially groundbreaking new drug that can kill the flu virus in just one day has won regulatory …

A Biohacker Regrets Publicly Injecting Himself With CRISPR

“There’s no doubt in my mind that somebody is going to end up hurt eventually.”<p>When Josiah Zayner watched a biotech CEO drop his pants at a biohacking conference and inject himself with an untested herpes treatment, he realized things had gone off the rails.<p>Zayner is no stranger to stunts in …

Genetic Engineering

Matching DNA to a Diet Does Not Work

DNA testing won’t guide dieters to the weight-loss regimen most likely to work for them, scientists reported on Tuesday. Despite some earlier studies …

Weight Loss