The Ebola virus—one of the world's deadliest diseases—has a kill rate of 90 percent. That's largely because the best current treatment must be applied within one hour of infection. Which is an almost impossibly brief window, considering symptoms may take anywhere from two to 21 days to appear in humans. But a new treatment has shown success in curing the disease when administered 24 hours or more after infection—at least when tested in monkeys.
Unstoppable mutant vermin and farm critters stir up health scares
By Katharine GammonPosted 06.10.2009 at 10:30 am 5 Comments
This Little Piggie Had Ebola
In January, the Ebola virus leapt from pigs to farmers in the Philippines. Butdon't panic. Despite being a cousin of the deadly African strains, this one, Ebola-Reston, merely causes flu-like symptoms in humans, says Pierre Rollin, a biologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. To be safe, the Philippine government ordered farmers to euthanize 6,500 pigs from infected farms. Ebola-Reston was first seen in Philippine monkeys in 1989 and has since passed to other species. Scientists think contagious bats urinated in pigs' water supply, and the swine then coughed the virus onto humans.
On May 5th, Konan Michel Yao was arrested for smuggling vials from a Canadian ebola research center into the United States. However, Mr. Yao wasn't a terrorist attempting to commit a biological weapon attack. Instead, Mr. Yao was a government scientist, en route to his new job studying biodefense at the National Institutes of Health. Additionally, he didn't even have any ebola in his possession.
New research shows where deadly pathogens are cropping up the fastest. Unfortunately, the hottest hot zones often have the least funding to monitor for emerging diseases
By Martha HarbisonPosted 02.21.2008 at 6:06 pm 1 Comment
As if I'm not paranoid enough about contracting some germ-based doom from riding the subway everyday, now scientists have presented, in this week's issue of Nature, the first map of emerging infectious disease hotspots throughout the world. And, yep, New York City seems to be in the red.