Tagged With diseases

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A new study shows that Toxoplasma gondii -- a brain parasite often transmitted to humans by cats -- triggers various changes in the human brain which potentially allow the pathogen to exacerbate several pre-existing neurological conditions. It's a worrisome finding given that around eight million Australians are infected with the parasite, but more work is needed to assess T. gondii's full impact on human health.

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With the civil war in Yemen now having entered into its third year, the beleaguered Middle Eastern nation is having to contend with the devastating impacts of conflict, including disease. An alarming report from the World Health Organisation estimates that some 500,000 Yemenis have contracted cholera since April of this year, of which 2000 have died. It's now the worst active cholera epidemic in the world, and one of the largest in decades.

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Experts say it's not a matter of if, but when a global scale pandemic will wipe out millions of people. And we are grossly unprepared for the next major outbreak. But in the event of a devastating pandemic -- whether it be triggered by a mutated strain of an existing virus or a bioengineered terror weapon -- there are some practical things you can do, both before and during the outbreak, to increase your odds of survival.

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Researchers at Vanderbilt University have found a secondary set of odour sensors on female malarial mosquitoes that appear to be specifically tuned to sniff out humans. While admittedly disturbing, the discovery could lead to new ways of combating malarial mosquitoes and the dreaded disease they carry.

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Since 1995, hundreds of poor children in Muzaffarpur, India have mysteriously suffered seizures and feelings of brain fogginess, usually in the morning. Many would soon die. This happened every year between May and July: In 2014, for example, Muzaffarpur hospitals admitted 390 kids with the symptoms, resulting in 122 deaths.

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Scientists have learned that upwards of 25 per cent of all people who become infected with Ebola show none of the typical symptoms. The finding suggests the recent West African Ebola Epidemic was more widespread than previously thought, and that new methods need to be developed to diagnose and contain the dreaded virus during an outbreak.

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The future of public health in the United States was a hotly contested topic during the 2016 US election, with the presidential candidates making bold promises and several important ballot initiatives up for grabs. Here's how America voted, and what a Trump presidency means to America's health.

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The origin of the AIDS pandemic has been reconstructed in unprecedented detail, showing the disease jumped from the Caribbean to New York City around 1970. The new study subsequently clears the name of Gaétan Dugas, a French-Canadian flight attendant long-thought to be "Patient Zero".

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Endemic measles has officially been wiped out in the Americas. That means the only outbreaks that happen are those imported from abroad. It's the first region in the world to achieve this certification, but the battle against measles is far from over. We're looking at you, anti-vaxxers.