History Channel

12/12/2013 Outbreak of Bubonic Plague Hits Madagascar Village

During the Middle Ages, the rodent-borne bubonic plague (or the “Black Death,” as it was known) arrived on European shores aboard merchant ships from Asia and spread quickly, eventually killing more than 20 million people. Modern medicine and improved hygiene standards virtually eradicated the disease in Europe and a large section of the world--but have not eliminated it completely. Last week, at least 20 people in a northwestern village of Madagascar died of the disease, marking one of the worst outbreaks in recent years.

New Scientist

11/20/2013 Souped-up bacteria clears hookworm from hamster guts

BACTERIA used in Japanese food have cured hookworm infections – at least in hamsters. Two billion people around the world are infected with parasitic worms, or helminths, which are found in the soil. The drugs used to treat them were developed to treat parasites in farm animals.

Healio - Infectious Disease News

11/17/2013 P. vivax may be overcoming natural resistance found in Africans

The Plasmodium vivax parasite appears to be rapidly evolving to overcome resistance conferred by a specific blood type found among millions of people in Africa, researchers reported at the annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

Daily Nation (Kenya)

11/16/2013 Africans once protected against malaria face new risk

A common type of malaria that used to be powerless to infect certain groups of Africans is becoming more potent, putting tens of millions of people at risk, scientists said Friday.

Cleveland Plain Dealer

11/15/2013 CWRU, Cleveland Clinic researchers get $3.5 million to study genetic changes of parasite that causes malaria

A team of researchers at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute will use a five year, $3.5 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (part of the National Institutes of Health) to see if they can uncover more information about the genetic mutations they recently discovered on a parasite that causes more than 100 million cases of malaria each year worldwide.


11/15/2013 Climate clues as dengue fever spreads in US

Mosquitoes that transmit dengue fever are spreading across the US. But outbreaks of the disease are only occurring in some areas, and scientists are trying to find out why.

The Verge

11/14/2013 Dengue fever outbreaks in the US leave scientists looking for answers

Dengue fever was eradicated from the US nearly 70 years ago, but the devastating tropical disease has made something of a comeback in recent years, following outbreaks in Florida, Hawaii, and Texas. Unlike dengue outbreaks in other parts of the world, its American resurgence has so far been limited in reach — though researchers are still struggling to explain why it hasn't spread further.

Science's "Science Now"

11/14/2013 Treatment for Dormant Malaria Shows Promise

The first new drug in half a century to target malaria parasites in one of their best hideouts is showing encouraging results. The researchers developing the drug, called tafenoquine, said today that data from a recently completed phase II trial were promising enough that they will soon start a phase III trial—the last step before asking drug regulators for approval.

Discover Magazine

10/29/2013 Plague It Again, Sam: Plague in the Twenty-First Century

The plague is an old microbial foe that has haunted our cities and our ports for millennia, killing millions of people in waves of pandemics since antiquity. But Yersinia pestis no longer has the same presence, or stranglehold, in our society and seems negligible when we consider the current state of microbial affairs – increasing levels of antibiotic resistance and novel and emerging viral pathogens, just to name a couple of today’s most pressing issues. Even its moniker, “the plague,” has been appropriated for more contemporary microorganisms that appear to come from nowhere and quickly, fatally sweep through a population – SARS and HIV are prime examples of two new “plagues.”

NPR's Shots

10/09/2013 Activists Sue U.N. Over Cholera That Killed Thousands In Haiti

Human rights activists are suing the United Nations on behalf of five Haitian families afflicted by cholera — a disease many believe U.N. peacekeeping troops brought to Haiti in the aftermath of the devastating 2010 earthquake there.

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