Swine Flu Facts

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The Swine Flu is getting worse in many countries. We are facing the worries of the second wave and probably more adverse situation worldwide. The best thing we could do is to strengthen our own immunity and to be prepared for the upcoming crisis.


Here are some of the facts recap about swine flu from WHO’s website:

What is the new influenza A(H1N1)?

This is a new influenza A(H1N1) virus that has never before circulated among humans. This virus is not related to previous or current human seasonal influenza viruses.
How do people become infected with the virus?

The virus is spread from person-to-person. It is transmitted as easily as the normal seasonal flu and can be passed to other people by exposure to infected droplets expelled by coughing or sneezing that can be inhaled, or that can contaminate hands or surfaces.

To prevent spread, people who are ill should cover their mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, stay home when they are unwell, clean their hands regularly, and keep some distance from healthy people, as much as possible.

There are no known instances of people getting infected by exposure to pigs or other animals.

The place of origin of the virus is unknown.
What are the signs and symptoms of infection?

Signs of influenza A(H1N1) are flu-like, including fever, cough, headache, muscle and joint pain, sore throat and runny nose, and sometimes vomiting and diarrhoea.
Why are we so worried about this flu when hundreds of thousands die every year from seasonal epidemics?

Egg screening ‘ups IVF success’

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BBC News

A screening technique can double the chance of IVF success, giving hope to tens of thousands of women struggling to have children, say experts.


The test boosts the odds of success

Doctors at an annual US fertility meeting heard for the second year running of the merits of a test that screens embryos for genetic faults.

So far more than 20 babies have been born using the technique.

The UK researchers say they are now able to back the method with “great confidence”.

They hope it will eventually be available to all. Currently, it is offered in a few private UK clinics.

Doctors believe the £2,000 test, called comparative genomic hybridisation or CGH, will be particularly useful to older women, whose embryos have a greater risk of carrying genetic errors that cause conditions like Down’s syndrome.

The screening checks chromosomes in the developing embryo when it is a few days old, meaning only those embryos with the best chance of success are used in fertility treatment.

Dr Dagan Wells from Oxford University, who led the study, described the latest results on 115 women – six times as many as last year – as “astonishing”.

The results are particularly impressive as many of the women were on their “last chance” at IVF – they were typically aged 39 with two failed IVF cycles behind them.

Key cancer spread gene found

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BBC News

Scientists have pinpointed a gene linked to more than half of all breast cancers.

Breast examination

The gene plays a role in many cases of breast cancer

The gene, NRG1 (neuregulin-1), is also thought to play a role in many bowel, prostate, ovarian and bladder tumours.

The University of Cambridge team said the breakthrough should provide “vital information” about how cancer spreads.

Experts agreed the finding, published in the journal Oncogene, could represent a very significant advance in the fight against cancer.

The Cambridge team showed that the gene – which helps to suppress the growth of cancer – is located on chromosome 8.

Cancerous cells are known often to miss part of that chromosome, and when the researchers analysed breast cancer samples they found that at least part of the key gene had often been lost.

Everybody is born with an intact NRG1 but it seems that in some cases it can become damaged – leaving the way open for cancer to thrive.

Lead researcher Dr Paul Edwards said: “I believe NRG1 could be the most important tumour suppresser gene discovery in the last 20 years as it gives us vital information about a new mechanism that causes breast cancer.

Top Seven Deadly Foods: Gross, or Tasty?

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Gross Foods from the Blog and Book, ‘This Is Why You’re Fat’

Abc News

Photo: Gross Food Movement

A hot dog on a stick — encrusted in French Fries? Or, perhaps, a peanut butter, banana and bacon donut? Do these offerings sound tasty, or just too ridiculous? Regardless, they’re just a couple of the creations that define what some have termed the “gross-food movement.”

The phrase comes from Gourmet magazine, in an article published in June.

“The Gross-Food Movement, as I hereby christen it, is a grassroots embrace of all things deep-fried, bacon-wrapped, and cheese-slathered,” wrote Robert Ashley in the article.

Jessica Amason, author of the blog and book, “This Is Why You’re Fat,” noticed a trend in crazy food items and developed the website around the idea. The book will be released on Oct. 27, and it goes into more depth than the blog, including recipes and stories from the creators of these items.

“The items are really disgusting, enticing and hilarious,” said Amason. “And people actually take the time and energy to make these things.

“It made sense that there be a one-stop-shop site for all of these gross items where users could submit their own [food creations],” she added. “The title was sort of just a cheeky joke.”

World swine flu toll nears 10,000

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Passengers wearing masks at a staion in Tokyo, 19 May 2009
Confirmed cases of swine flu in Japan have climbed rapidly
BBC News

Nearly 10,000 cases of swine flu have been confirmed in 40 different countries around the world, the World Health Organization (WHO) has said.

The WHO said 79 people are known to have died from the new virus.

The news comes as the WHO and UN hold talks with top pharmaceutical firms to discuss the production of a vaccine.

Correspondents say there is concern about the global distribution of a possible vaccine after wealthy states pre-ordered large stocks.

The WHO says the global tally of swine flu cases stands at 9,830, after rising by 1,001 in one day.

Most of the new flu victims were in Mexico, which reported some 545 cases, and the US, where 409 new cases were confirmed. There were also 34 new cases in Japan.

Five confirmed cases were reported in Panama, three in Chile, two in El Salvador and one each in the UK, Peru and China.

Five new deaths have also been reported – four in Mexico and one in the US. Read more…

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