• GM fungus rapidly kills 99% of malaria mosquitoes, study suggests - BBC News

    Un champignon pour tuer les moustiques vecteurs du paludisme - Top #Santé

    Les chercheurs de l’université du Maryland, aux États-Unis, ont identifié un #champignon appelé Metarhizium pingshaense, qui infecte naturellement les #moustiques qui propagent le #paludisme. Dans un essai mené au Burkina Faso, ce champignon génétiquement modifié a fait disparaître 99% des populations de moustiques en 45 jours.

    Pour renforcer les pouvoirs de ce champignon, les chercheurs se sont tournés vers une toxine trouvée dans le venin d’une espèce d’araignée australienne. Ils ont génétiquement modifié le champignon pour qu’il fabrique cette toxine à l’intérieur du moustique.


  • The Battle Against One of the Worst Ebola Epidemics Ever Is in Trouble

    “Ebola responders are increasingly being seen as the enemy,” Dr. Joanne Liu, president of Doctors Without Borders, said at a news conference in Geneva on Thursday. “In the last month alone, there were more than 30 different incidents and attacks against elements of the response.”

    “The existing atmosphere can only be described as toxic,” she said.

    Some people in the region question why the vaccine is being given only to certain people — including health workers and contacts of patients — and not to everyone, she said. Many wonder why outside aid has flooded in for Ebola, but not for malaria, diarrhea or other common, debilitating diseases that afflict many more people. Some have asked aid workers where they were when militias were carrying out massacres of civilians.

  • “These displaced people live in fear of being attacked at any time”

    After increased insecurity in the Tillabéry region of Niger caused large numbers of people to flee their homes, MSF carried out an emergency response in early January 2019.

    MSF deputy head of mission Boulama Elhadji Gori describes the situation.
    Why did MSF carry out an emergency response in the rural area of #Dessa in the #Tillabéry region last week?

    A state of emergency was declared recently in the department of Tillabéry, in the region of the same name. Like many other departments in the region, Tillabéry faces many security challenges.

    The people living in this border area between Mali and Niger find themselves trapped in violence that comes from two directions: on one side, the community conflict; on the other, the activities of non-state armed groups.

    After receiving information about people being displaced in the region, an MSF team visited the immediate area, where they saw first-hand the precarious situation in which the displaced people were living.

    We are talking about a total of 1,287 people at three sites within a five-kilometre radius. These people were already vulnerable, having been displaced several times already.

    What were people’s main needs?

    These people had been forced to leave their homes, their fields and often their animals in order to escape the violence orchestrated by armed groups and other opportunists. Because of the hostilities in the area, basic services such as schools and health centres have been closed.

    The displaced people lack shelter, food, healthcare and protection. They are also drinking untreated river water, which brings the risk of various diseases.

    Given the urgency of their needs, and in the absence of other humanitarian organisations, the MSF team decided to launch a response.
    What did MSF’s response involve?

    Our medical team conducted 170 medical consultations, mainly for respiratory infections, malaria, dermatitis and severe malnutrition, as well as 20 antenatal consultations.

    We also assessed the nutritional status of children and vaccinated nearly 130 children against measles. Five mental health promotion sessions were organised for approximately 160 people.

    Several patients were referred to the health centre for follow-up care, which MSF was also involved in. Our team distributed essential relief items to 220 families, including blankets, cooking utensils, washing kits, mosquito nets and jerry cans.

    To make sure that people have safe drinking water, the teams distributed 4,000 water purification tablets, and ran sessions on how to use them.

    Who are the displaced people?

    “Most of the people who fled the violence are women, children and the elderly, of different ethnicities, living in the border area between Mali and Niger. There are also a number of young people who reject violence and want to settle in places that are considered more secure.

    The displaced include refugees from Mali and internally displaced people from Niger.

    The majority of the displaced people live in fear of being attacked at any time, because of what they have already experienced – their villages being attacked, assassinations, their markets burned down, their animals stolen, and living with the threat of death.

    Other than this emergency response, what is MSF doing in Tillabéry region?

    MSF has been working in Niger’s Bani-Bangou department, near the border with Mali, since November 2018. Long before the state of emergency was declared, schools, health centres and other social infrastructure were not functioning because of the violence.

    MSF is working in the area to ensure access to free quality medical care for displaced people and local communities. We support two health centres and five health posts.

    We are also monitoring the situation in other areas which could potentially receive newly displaced people, or where there are needs not covered by other organisations, particularly in the area around Innates. MSF also supports medical services, from health posts to hospitals, in Bani-Bangou and Ouallam.

    Our teams work in collaboration with the Ministry of Health. In December 2018, we treated 4,599 people, provided 452 antenatal consultations and assisted 22 births. In addition, 588 children under the age of two received routine immunisations, and 34 women of childbearing age were vaccinated against tetanus. We also referred to hospital seven patients in need of emergency treatment.
    What are people’s main needs in this region? And what are the challenges of assisting them?

    People in this region need food, essential relief items, physical and mental healthcare, clean water, good sanitation and hygiene, and protection.

    The main challenge we face is the climate of insecurity in the region, which can make it difficult to reach the people who need assistance.
    #IDPs #déplacés_internes #réfugiés_maliens #Mali #Niger #migrations #réfugiés

  • Medieval medical books could hold the recipe for new antibiotics –

    I am part of the Ancientbiotics team, a group of medievalists, microbiologists, medicinal chemists, parasitologists, pharmacists and data scientists from multiple universities and countries. We believe that answers to the antibiotic crisis could be found in medical history. With the aid of modern technologies, we hope to unravel how premodern physicians treated infection and whether their cures really worked.

    To that end, we are compiling a database of medieval medical recipes. By revealing patterns in medieval medical practice, our database could inform future laboratory research into the materials used to treat infection in the past. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt to create a medieval medicines database in this manner and for this purpose.

    Premodern European medicine has been poorly studied for its clinical potential, compared with traditional pharmacopeias of other parts of the world. Our research also raises questions about medieval medical practitioners. Today, the word “medieval” is used as a derogatory term, indicating cruel behavior, ignorance or backwards thinking. This perpetuates the myth that the period is unworthy of study.

    During our eyesalve study, chemist Tu Youyou was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for her discovery of a new therapy for malaria after searching over 2,000 recipes from ancient Chinese literature on herbal medicine. Is another “silver bullet” for microbial infection hidden within medieval European medical literature?

    Certainly, there are medieval superstitions and treatments that we would not replicate today, such as purging a patient’s body of pathogenic humors. However, our work suggests that there could be a methodology behind the medicines of medieval practitioners, informed by a long tradition of observation and experimentation.

    #Pharmacie #Moyen_âge #Antibiotiques

  • Viral hepatitis: A silent epidemic killing more people than HIV, ma...

    Viral hepatitis: A silent epidemic killing more people than HIV, malaria or TB

    Viral hepatitis is on the rise. Tackling hepatitis B in Africa is key to fighting back. Article word count: 2534

    HN Discussion: Posted by pseudolus (karma: 2692) Post stats: Points: 153 - Comments: 63 - 2018-12-07T14:03:41Z

    #HackerNews #epidemic #hepatitis #hiv #killing #malaria #more #people #silent #than #viral

    Article content:

    Nuru was prepared for the worst when she went to get screened for HIV eight years ago. After caring for her mother in Uganda, who died as a result of the virus, Nuru moved to the United Kingdom to study, and decided to take her health into her own hands. “I was ready to be told I had HIV,” she says. “I felt, ‘That’s okay. I’ve (...)

  • A vaccine that could block mosquitoes from transmitting malaria

    For some decades, researchers have being working on a novel idea called a “transmission-blocking vaccine.” This vaccine is different from traditional vaccines that protect the recipient from getting the disease. Here, the vaccine blocks the transmission of the parasite that causes malaria from an infected human host to mosquitoes.

    When a human receives such a vaccine, specific antibodies are generated in the blood. When a mosquito bites and ingests the blood of an infected human, both the parasite and antibody are taken up into the mosquito’s stomach. Once inside the mosquito, the antibody attaches to the parasite and inhibits its development. This prevents the mosquito from transmitting the disease to another person.

    The concept is bold but has not yet been tested in large-scale trials.

    #paludisme #vaccin #moustiques

  • #Angola : Les migrants africains en danger de mort

    Les autorités angolaises lancent « la chasse aux ressortissants sub-sahariens en situation irrégulière ». Une #opération dénommée « #expatriado » est en cours en ce moment. Elle vise à « expulser tous les immigrés en situation irrégulière en Angola ». Des ressortissants maliens témoignent des « cas d’#emprisonnement suivis de pires formes de #maltraitance et d’#humiliation ». Pour l’instant, difficile d’avoir des chiffres officiels sur le nombre de Maliens victimes. Mais ceux joints sur place appellent à l’aide des autorités maliennes.

    Selon certains Maliens, ces opérations d’expulsion ont débuté dans les zones minières. Elles se déroulent maintenant dans toutes les villes du pays, et concernent toutes les nationalités y compris les Maliens, qui sont parmi les plus nombreux. « Cela fait des jours que nous ne pouvons plus sortir pour aller au boulot par peur de nous faire arrêter », explique un ressortissant malien sur place. Selon lui, cette opération qui ne devrait concerner que les #sans-papiers, est aussi menée par les forces de l’ordre angolaises contre ceux qui sont en situation régulière. L’objectif, selon notre interlocuteur, est de soutirer de l’argent aux migrants.

    « Une fois entre les mains des autorités angolaises, il faut payer de l’argent ou partir en prison », témoignent certains migrants maliens, avant de confirmer que plusieurs d’entre eux sont actuellement en prison. En Angola certains Maliens ont l’impression d’être « laissés pour compte par les autorités maliennes ». Pour l’Association Malienne des Expulsés, « il est inacceptable qu’un pays membre de l’Union Africaine expulse d’autres africains de la sorte ». L’AME qui juge la situation « grave » en Angola, appelle les autorités maliennes à réagir.
    #migrations #asile #réfugiés #rafles #expulsions #renvois #chasse_aux_migrants #migrants_maliens

    • Briefing: Problems multiply in Congo’s Kasaï

      The Kasaï region in the Democratic Republic of Congo is struggling to recover from two years of intense conflict. The influx last month of more than 300,000 people from Angola, most of them long-standing migrant workers, has made a fragile humanitarian situation worse.

      Here’s our briefing on the risks for the region and the new challenges for the humanitarian response.
      What happened?

      In attempts to clamp down on what it called illegal diamond mining operations, Angola’s government ordered the expulsion of more than 360,000 Congolese nationals, forcing them to flee in October into the Kasaï region of neighbouring DRC.

      "This new shock is compounding an already dire situation in the same area that was the epicentre of the Kasaï crisis over the last couple of years,” explained Dan Schreiber, head of coordination in Congo for the UN’s emergency aid body, OCHA.

      Congolese migrants and officials said the crackdown was violent, telling Reuters that dozens of people were killed, with the worst attacks occurring in Lucapa in Angola’s diamond-rich Lunda Norte province. Angolan security forces denied the allegations.
      Where did they go?

      Most of those expelled crossed into Kamako in Kasaï province, where aid organisations are responding to the tail-end of the Kamuina Nsapu insurgency that first erupted in 2016. Some of the returnees include refugees who fled violence in Kasaï over the last two years, the Norwegian Refugee Council said.

      The NRC said conditions returnees face in Congo are “shocking”, including the risk of waterborne disease due to ineffective water and sanitation; thousands sleeping outdoors because of insufficient shelter; food prices tripling; and extortion of goods on both sides of the border.

      “Hundreds of thousands of people have been robbed of their right to a dignified existence,” said Ulrika Blom, NRC’s country director in DRC. “This is not a crisis that is about to begin, it is a full-blown emergency.”
      What has the reaction been?

      While local communities have generally been welcoming to the returnees, OCHA’s Schreiber said skirmishes erupted in certain villages, mainly over the strain on limited food resources.

      “Experience in the DRC does show that when you have a large influx of people arriving in an area it can generate tensions between host communities and the people who arrive,” he said.

      Schreiber said OCHA has seen most returnees wanting to move away from the border areas and toward other destinations inland, which could help ease the humanitarian strain in Kasaï, but he also warned that more returnees could arrive from Angola.

      “We don’t expect the first wave to be the last wave,” he said. “Expulsions from Angola are a cyclical phenomena that go all the way back to 2002-2003. It’s not a new phenomenon, but in this case we are seeing a major influx, and clearly the absorption capacity is not there.”
      Why is their arrival in Kasaï in particular such a problem?

      Kasaï was a relatively stable region in an unstable country – one currently dealing with multiple conflicts, an Ebola outbreak in North Kivu province, and one of the world’s most neglected displacement crises.

      The situation in Kasaï changed dramatically in 2016 when conflict erupted between the Kamuina Nsapu anti-government movement and Congolese security forces. The inter-communal clashes spread far and wide, soon engulfing the entire region.

      The conflict escalated in 2017, with massacres and mass graves, as well as general insecurity marked by banditry, and poor harvests that led to food insecurity and malnutrition.

      An estimated 5,000 people have since been killed and more than 1.4 million displaced.

      Toward the end of 2017 and into 2018, the crisis eased slightly, as national authorities regained control over large parts of the region. Despite isolated bouts of violence, aid groups say most militias have been formally disbanded and displaced communities are tentatively returning home.

      “But those returns are accompanied by many needs, because people are returning to burned villages, destroyed homes, and a lot of destruction,” said OCHA’s Schreiber.

      Two years of violence and displacement also mean locals have been unable to grow crops for three seasons, which has led to concerns over malnutrition. “We have really seen food insecurity skyrocket. So even in areas where returns have occurred, humanitarian needs have not come to an end,” Schreiber added.
      What are the risks?

      Although the current influx of people from Angola isn’t directly linked to the Kamuina Nsapu rebellion, aid groups are concerned about the implications of piling one problem on top of another in the same geographic area.

      For the most vulnerable groups, specifically women and children, the challenges that affect those displaced by the insurgency also pose risks for the new returnees from Angola.

      In May for instance, UNICEF reported that 400,000 children were “at risk of death” in the Kasaïs, because of food shortages.

      Yves Willemot, a spokesman for UNICEF in Congo, said the rate of severe acute malnutrition among children living in the region has improved slightly since earlier this year but “remains challenging”.

      “The security situation has clearly improved, but the impact on children is not ending in the short term,” he said.

      Among those newly returned from Angola are 80,000 children. They now are also at risk, forced to walk long distances while exposed to inclement weather, hunger, and the threat of violence. Willemot said basic services are lacking for them, including access to drinking water, schooling, and treatment for diseases like malaria and measles.

      Médecins Sans Frontières is among the NGOs initiating primary healthcare services for the recent arrivals, while also continuing interventions to assist the local population.

      In a recent report, MSF documented alarming levels of rape in the Kasaï region, saying it treated 2,600 victims of sexual violence between May 2017 and September 2018; 80 percent of those interviewed said armed men raped them.

      “The sexual violence committed in Kasaï was perpetrated largely by armed groups against non-armed people,” Philippe Kadima, MSF’s humanitarian advisor for the Great Lakes region, told IRIN. “Although the main conflict is over, we still see some violence happening in Kasaï.”

      For the more than 300,000 returnees, he said there are clear humanitarian concerns, but also the risk of insecurity. “The question is, how do you keep people secure?”

      “Displaced people become vulnerable, so it’s not that different to what the existing IDPs in Kasaï are going through… Security concerns, humanitarian needs, and risks of sexual violence are all factors when people become vulnerable,” he said.
      What about the longer-term challenges?

      Humanitarian needs remain critically underfunded in the Kasai region, said OCHA’s Shreiber, emphasising that beyond the immediate concerns are much broader needs in the region and the DRC as a whole.

      He added that the humanitarian response must help minimise the long-term impact of the crisis on those affected.

      “The longer we remain in this critical phase, the more we can expect to see humanitarian needs spiral out of control,” he said. “The current trigger of new humanitarian needs (the returnees from Angola) may be time-bound, but I think the impact will be lasting.”

      Schreiber said the Kasaï region remains vulnerable because it faces particular challenges, including decades of underdevelopment and inaccessibility as a result of poor road infrastructure, and he urged more development actors to get involved.

      “People in the Kasaïs are eager to rebound, to be back on their feet, and move on. There is no expectation that humanitarian assistance should continue forever in the Kasaï region,” he said. “People want to be autonomous, but what they need is support to build up their resilience and be able to move towards a situation where their most basic needs are met and they are able to think about their futures again.”

    • Les violations des droits humains des migrants africains en Angola

      Les violations des droits humains des migrants africains en Angola

      Depuis un certain moment, la communauté africaine vivant sur le territoire angolais est l’objet de toute sorte de violation de ses droits les plus fondamentaux par les autorités de ce pays. La Charte Africaines des Droits de l’Homme et des Peuples protège les droits des migrants dans tous ses aspects contre les violations des droits et l’Angola est justement membre de l’Union Africaine. Ainsi, ces violations se matérialisent par des arrestations musclées et arbitraires, des emprisonnements dans des conditions inhumaines et dégradantes (art.5 de la Déclaration Universelle des Droits de l’Homme et de la Charte Africaine des Droits de l’Homme et des Peuples) de même que les expulsions collectives pourtant interdites par la Charte Africaine dans son article 12.5.

      L’AME est vivement préoccupée par les récentes arrestations, détentions et expulsions des centaines de milliers de migrants africains dont des maliens. Selon des informations recueillies auprès de nos sources sur place, une centaine de maliens sont concernés par cette situation qui évolue et change de jour en jour.

      Nous attirons l’attention de l’Union Africaine et de ses pays membres sur la situation inacceptable que vivent les étrangers sur la terre africaine d’Angola et rappeler que les droits de l’homme sont des droits inaliénables de tous les êtres humains, quels que soient leur nationalité, leur lieu de résidence, leur sexe, leur origine ethnique ou nationale, leur couleur, leur religion…

      L’Angola comme la plupart des pays africains s’est engagé à protéger, respecter et réaliser les droits de l’homme, non seulement de ses nationaux, mais de toute personne sous sa juridiction. Dans ce contexte, tous les étrangers se trouvant sur le sol angolais auraient dû bénéficier de la protection des autorités angolaises quelque soient les raisons qu’elles mettent en avant pour justifier ces expulsions.

      L’Organisation des Nations Unies (ONU) n’est pas resté silencieuse comme la plupart des pays africains, le Haut-Commissaire des Nations Unies aux droits de l’homme a mis en garde sur les conséquences des expulsions massives de réfugiés depuis l’Angola, au cours des trois dernières semaines de ce mois d’octobre.

      Par ailleurs, le Secrétaire Général des Nations Unies a rappelé le 19 septembre 2017 que : « tout pays a le droit de contrôler ses frontières. Mais cela doit se faire de telle sorte que les droits des personnes ‘en mouvement’ soient protégés ».

      Au regard de tout ce qui vient d’être évoqué :
      1. L’Association Malienne des Expulsés (AME) pour sa part, exhorte le gouvernement Malien à tout mettre en œuvre pour la sécurisation de nos compatriotes et de leurs biens dans les pays d’accueil ;
      2. Appelle le gouvernement à communiquer davantage sur cette situation en donnant beaucoup plus d’informations aux familles des maliens vivants en Angola ;
      3. Encourage le gouvernement de continuer à œuvrer pour le respect des droits des migrants maliens et aussi pour le développement d’une relation franche entre les Etats africains en vue de la réalisation de l’unité africaine comme le prévoit l’article 117 de la Constitution ;
      4. Invite l’Union Africaine à dénoncer et prendre des mesures contre les violations des droits humains dans les pays membres ;
      5. Invite également les Etats membres de l’Union Africaine à renoncer aux expulsions massives des ressortissants d’autres pays africains et à mettre fin sans délais aux opérations actuelles en cour ;
      6. Exhorte l’U.A et les Etats à une plus grande implication des organisations de la société civile aux différents processus pour la gestion de la migration.

  • Opinion | We Know How to Conquer Tuberculosis - The New York Times

    And so, tuberculosis remains the world’s leading infectious disease killer, by far. It infects some 10 million people around the world every year, killing roughly 1.5 million. That’s some 4,000 deaths per day. By comparison, Ebola killed four people in 2017. America’s opioid epidemic kills about 115 people a day.

    Still, tuberculosis is rarely the stuff of headlines. It’s ancient. It normally affects only the poorest people in the poorest countries. And when it does spread through wealthier areas, it’s generally curable with antibiotics. But a contingent of doctors, scientists and public health officials have spent the past two decades battling a global epidemic of the disease. And on Wednesday, they got their first hearing at the United Nations General Assembly. In a high-level meeting exclusively about tuberculosis control, those experts called on world leaders to devote more attention and far more resources to the disease. Both are urgently needed. Tuberculosis receives significantly less funding than H.I.V. or malaria, even though TB kills more people each year than both of those diseases combined. The World Health Organization estimates a $3.5 billion funding shortfall for TB control efforts, and says that gap could double in five years.

    But policymakers, industry leaders and doctors on the front lines might also consider a change in strategy: Treat tuberculosis outbreaks in poor countries the same way they are treated in rich ones. That is, don’t just treat those who are sick; find and test their household members, neighbors, classmates and colleagues — and then treat the ones who test positive. Give them medications to kill the bacteria before they develop symptoms and before they pass the bacteria on, through their own coughing, to the next victim.

    #Tuberculose #Maladie_des_pauvres

  • Discovery of Malaria Parasite Survival Genes Offers New Targets - The Wire

    They used a specialised technique called piggyBac-transposon insertional mutagenesis to inactivate genes at random, and then developed new DNA sequencing technology to identify which genes were affected. Their results showed that around half the parasite’s genes – more than 2,600 – were essential for it to grow in red blood cells.

    “Using our genetic analysis tools, we (were) able to determine the relative importance of each gene for parasite survival,” said John Adams, a specialist in global health and infectious disease research at USF.

    Malaria is a treatable disease if it is caught early, but current antimalarial drugs are failing in many areas due to increasing drug resistance.

    “We need new drug targets against malaria now more than ever,” said Julian Rayner, a Sanger expert who co-led the research. “This gives a list of 2,680 essential genes that researchers can prioritise as promising possible drug targets.”

    #paludisme #santé

  • New report says completing a course of antibiotics even after symptoms abate is overrated

    Vers une remise en cause de la stratégie d’utilisation des antibiotiques ?

    Scientists have explained the mechanism of development of antibiotic resistance.

    • Target selected resistance - When a microbe multiplies within the host it leads to infection. These microbes may undergo genetic mutations that may make them deadlier and resistant to antibiotics. These genetic mutations are seen to be accelerated in case of inadequate dosing of the antibiotics or when a single drug is used to kill the microbe. Tuberculosis, HIV, typhoid, malaria and gonorrhoea are notable infections that develop resistance in this manner.

    • Collateral selection – There are several bacteria types that live harmlessly within the gut or other mucus membranes. During antibiotic treatment for other infections, these harmless bacteria genetically mutate to become resistant and cause infections. Their mutations are passed on to other strains of the bacteria leading to antibiotic resistance. Organisms that show this type of resistance include Methicillin Resistant Staph aureus (MRSA).

    Researchers have seen that most of the antibiotic resistance now does not come from the first type of resistance selection or target selection. This means the second type is more common. This also means that longer the duration of the antibiotic use, longer the time the harmless bacteria in the gut gets to develop resistance and pass it on to the other strains and species of bacteria. These harmless bacteria are called “opportunistic pathogens” which means they become dangerous only at certain times i.e. antibiotic use, immunosuppression etc.

    In this new work, researchers have suggested optimum usage of antibiotics as the key to prevent resistance.

    • L’article original (accessible)

      The antibiotic course has had its day | The BMJ

      Key messages
      • Patients are put at unnecessary risk from antibiotic resistance when treatment is given for longer than necessary, not when it is stopped early
      • For common bacterial infections no evidence exists that stopping antibiotic treatment early increases a patient’s risk of resistant infection
      • Antibiotics are a precious and finite natural resource which should be conserved by tailoring treatment duration for individual patients
      • Clinical trials are required to determine the most effective strategies for optimising duration of antibiotic treatment

    • Why you really should take your full course of antibiotics

      Feeling better doesn’t mean you’re past the worst.
      Jonathan Cox, Author provided

      An article in the BMJ argues that contrary to long-given advice, it is unnecessary to make sure you finish all the antibiotics you’re prescribed. The article sparked debate among experts and more worryingly widespread confusion among the general public, who are still getting to grips with what they need to do to stem antibiotic resistance. Even my colleagues at the university this morning were asking me whether or not to finish their course of antibiotics.

      As an active campaigner for action to halt the progression of antibiotic resistance and a firm promoter of the “finish the course” message, the article and that the scale of coverage concerns me greatly.
      Only time will tell as to what the impact of suggesting people stop taking antibiotics when they feel better will be. I believe this has undone a lot of the hard work scientists like myself have invested in improving antibiotic awareness and personal responsibility surrounding antibiotic administration. Nevertheless, we all need to follow the advice of our clinicians who will no doubt hold out for some more conclusive scientific evidence before changing their advice surrounding antibiotics.

  • Cartographie De La Sensibilite Aux Maladies Environnementales Respiratoires Dans Le District Sanitaire De Koumassi-Port-Bouët-Vridi (Sud De La Côte d’Ivoire) (pdf) | Paperity


    Cartographie De La Sensibilite Aux Maladies Environnementales Respiratoires Dans Le District Sanitaire De Koumassi-Port-Bouët-Vridi (Sud De La Côte d’Ivoire)

    European Scientific Journal, Feb 2017
    Kouame Adonis Krou Damien
    Fofana Kandana Eve Maïmouna
    Mobio Abaka Brice Hervé
    Kassi Ahon Jean-Baptiste
    Kouame Koffi Fernand
    Djagoua Eric M’moi Valère

    In Côte d’Ivoire morbidity causes are related to diseases such as malaria, diarrhea, and acute respiratory infections (ARI), which are constantly evolving. Koumasi and Port-Bouet are the most affected municipalities in the country. This study aims to find environmental determinants of spatial distribution of the ARIs and identify the most sensitive areas to take action for prevention and effective control and targeted in order to reduce the prevalence of ARI. To achieve this goal, we have identified environmental factors associated with the occurrence of ARI. Different environmental and cartographic data were integrated into a GIS. A multi-criteria analysis was performed to determine the environmental parameters that expose more people to the occurrence of the IRA and the weights of these parameters. The combination of exposure maps was used to map the sensitivity to IRA. Multi-criteria analysis revealed that refuse dumps have the highest influence in the occurrence of the disease, followed by industrial facilities and permanent wastewater. The ARI sensitivity map obtained shows that neighborhoods Nord-est 2 and Zone industrielle in Koumassi municipality are most susceptible to ARI. In the municipality of Port-Bouet sensitivity is more pronounced at Vridi canal and Vridi 3. Special attention should therefore be granted these neighborhoods.

    #santé #côte_d_ivoire #cartographie #pollurion #environnement cc @fil

  • Malaria in Africa

    The impact of malaria control on Plasmodium falciparum in Africa, 2000–2015

    Since the year 2000, a concerted campaign against malaria has led to unprecedented levels of intervention coverage across sub-Saharan Africa. Understanding the effect of this control effort is vital to inform future control planning. However, the effect of malaria interventions across the varied epidemiological settings of Africa remains poorly understood owing to the absence of reliable surveillance data and the simplistic approaches underlying current disease estimates.

    A new study by the Malaria Atlas Project, published in Nature, has quantified the attributable effect of malaria disease control efforts in Africa. We found that Plasmodium falciparum infection prevalence in endemic Africa halved and the incidence of clinical disease fell by 40% between 2000 and 2015. We estimate that interventions have averted 663 million clinical cases since 2000. Insecticide-treated nets, the most widespread intervention, were by far the largest contributor. Although still below target levels, current malaria interventions have substantially reduced malaria disease incidence across the continent.

    #santé #malaria #afrque #cartographie_dynamique

  • Could We See the End of Malaria? - Facts So Romantic

    The Nobel laureate Baruch Blumberg once estimated that malaria has killed half of the people who have ever lived. In 2015 alone, it killed almost half a million people, 70 percent of which were children. Today, about 3.2 billion people are, according to the World Health Organization, at risk of contracting it, most of whom are children and pregnant women. Henrik Sorensen/Getty ImagesIt’s brought on by a blood parasite—about 50 times smaller than the width of a human hair—the most common and deadly of which is Plasmodium falciparum, which thrives in Sub-Saharan Africa. It rides on the needle-like mouth of a mosquito, known as a proboscis, until it gets injected into the bug’s next blood meal. If the victim happens to be human, the first symptoms from the attack are flu-like: fever, (...)

  • Implications of the Brazilian report on pre-Zika microcephaly

    If the ultimate cause of Brazil’s microcephaly is not some alien African virus but deliberate government policy that keeps millions poor, what does that say about the government and the Brazilians who support it?

    And what does that say about countries around the world who adopt similar policies, countries who leave their poor to lose their babies to diarrhea and malaria or cholera—or who keep their babies as malnourished, uneducated, stunted parodies of the strong and healthy young people they could have been?

    Very likely the Rousseff government will try to ignore the Mattos Report. What it should do is extend it to the whole vast country; if nothing else, it could establish a baseline not only on microcephaly but on the catastrophic consequences of centuries of robbing the poor to pay the rich.

    #inégalités #santé #zika #rapport

  • Gene drive gives scientists power to hijack evolution - STAT

    As soon as Harvard biologist Kevin Esvelt began reading the scientific paper, he had a desperate question: Who are these guys?

    The authors had used a controversial new molecular technique to try to force a certain gene to be inherited by all of a fruit fly’s offspring. Confounding a basic principle of genetics, they had succeeded. Nearly every one of the young flies carried the gene, for yellow pigmentation.

    While turning a bunch of flies yellow may sound innocuous, “gene drives” — as biologists call the cellular machinery that guarantees inheritance — have enormous potential promise as well as risks. Because gene drives could rapidly propagate novel DNA through an entire population in the wild, they could be used, proponents say, to eradicate marauders such as the cane toads overrunning Australia. They might make mosquitoes resistant to the microbes that cause malaria or dengue fever, or even block the gene that makes locusts swarm, saving millions of tons of crops every year.

    #cartographie #cartographie_interactive #cartographie_dynamique

  • The global road death toll has already reached 1.24 million
    Roads kill map

    The global road death toll has already reached 1.24 million per year and is on course to triple to 3.6 million per year by 2030.

    In the developing world, where this pandemic has hit hardest, it will become the fifth leading cause of death, leapfrogging past HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and other familiar killers, according to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) most recent Global Burden of Disease study.

    #carte #cartographie #visualisation #route #accident_routier #décès

  • #Resistance Taking Sting Out of Top #Malaria Drug - WSJ

    Resistance to the world’s most effective drug against malaria is becoming widespread in Southeast Asia, a recurrent pattern that threatens global efforts to control the mosquito-borne infectious disease, a new study shows.

    Resistance to the drug, #artemisinin, in the most deadly form of malaria-causing parasite, #Plasmodium falciparum, is established in northern and western Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and eastern Myanmar, according to the study published Thursday in the New England Journal of Medicine.

    The research, coordinated by the Mahidol Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit in Bangkok, analyzed blood samples from 1,241 malaria patients in 10 Asian and African countries between 2011 and 2013.

    Fear is growing that resistance would spread from Asia to Africa—where progress has been made in reducing deaths from malaria—in a way that neutered previous treatments. So far, three African sites included in the study—in Kenya, Nigeria and Congo—showed no signs of resistance.

    This is the third time that the malaria parasite has developed resistance to drugs. Each time previously it emerged from the Cambodian-Thailand border and spread to other countries, including in Africa.

    Resistance to chloroquine spread from the late 1950s into the 1970s, resulting in a resurgence of malaria infections and millions of deaths. Then, sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine was introduced before a resistance emerged. It was replaced by artemisinin combination therapies.

    Resistance to artemisinin has been driven by the misuse of the drug eroding its efficacy. It takes six days of treatment to clear parasites in patients on the Thai-Cambodian border instead of the standard three, the study found.

    Researchers found that patients whose infections were slow to clear were also more likely to transmit their drug-resistant strain to others.

    Mr. White urged more radical action, such as targeted malaria elimination, to prevent the spread of resistance. The approach would require officials to identify people who are healthy but carry malarial parasites, especially on western border of Myanmar.

    “The artemisinin drugs are arguably the best antimalarials we have ever had. We need to conserve them in areas where they are still working well,” said Elizabeth Ashley, the lead scientist of the study.

    New antimalarial medicines are being developed and have shown some promise, but are unlikely to be available for distribution for several years, another paper published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed.

    #paludisme #moustique

  • Promising Malaria Vaccine Looks to Employ Robots to Mass Produce Its Product | Singularity Hub

    a vaccine for malaria that, in early trials, was 100 percent effective. (...) Sanaria, a biotechnology founded in 2003 by long-time malaria researcher Stephen Hoffman and based in a suburb of Washington(...) reported that in a Phase I clinical trial whose participants were consenting U.S. veterans, the vaccine administered at the higher of two doses kept all the patients who got it from becoming infected with malaria when bitten by mosquitos carrying Plasmodium falciparum, which causes 98 percent of all malaria deaths. This year, the company will conduct trials in the U.S., Mali, Tanzania, Equatorial Guinea and Germany.

    #paludisme #vaccin #robotisation #crowdfunding #santé

  • How #malaria defeats our drugs | Mosaic

    Eliminating malaria is not just about having the right drug, the deadliest insecticide, or the most sensitive diagnostic test. It is about knowing people, from funders to villagers. “The most important component is getting people to agree and participate,” says Nosten. It matters that he has been working in the region for 30 yrs

    superbe reportage sur la lutte contre le #paludisme, qui contrebalance un peu

    #santé #birmanie

  • The Global Cancer Burden -

    Cancer is on the rise around the world and poses a particular threat in many low- and middle-income countries. Death tolls globally far exceed those from such devastating infectious diseases like AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. According to recent reports from international health agencies, global mortality from those three diseases has, in fact, been cut substantially — by nearly half in the case of malaria — over the past decade.

    #santé #cancer

  • Scientists discover chemical modification in human malaria parasite DNA

    Say “malaria” and most people think “mosquito,” but the buzzing, biting insect is merely the messenger, delivering the Plasmodium parasites that sickened more than 200 million people globally in 2010 and killed about 660,000. Worse, the parasite is showing resistance to artemisinin, the most effective drug for treating infected people.
    Now University of California, Riverside researchers who are trying to understand the biology of the parasite have discovered a potential weakness—low levels of DNA methylation in Plasmodium’s genome “that may be critical to the survival of the parasite,” said Karine Le Roch, an associate professor of cell biology, who led the research.
    DNA methylation is a biochemical process involving the modification of DNA that plays an important role in development and disease.
    A paper about the findings of Le Roch and her team, titled “Genome-wide Mapping of the DNA Methylation in the Human Malaria Parasite,” appears in the December issue of the journal Cell Host & Microbe.
    DNA methylation is a big deal in humans; it is so essential for normal development that abnormal DNA methylation patterns have been linked with many diseases, including cancers and neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Until now, the existence of DNA methylation in the Plasmodium parasite was disputable, Le Roch said. There were published contradicting studies that used old technology to search for methylation, but Le Roch’s team was able to confirm low levels of methylation using classical molecular approaches as well as new sequencing technology.


  • #Malaria vaccine: Hopes rise for 2015 target after successful trials | Society | The Guardian

    A vaccine against malaria could be introduced in the world’s worst-hit countries in 2015, after the latest trial of a treatment produced by Britain’s biggest drug company reduced the number of cases of the disease experienced by babies.

    The results of trials published on Tuesday in Durban, South Africa, showed that the RTS,S vaccine developed by GlaxoSmithKline nearly halved the cases of malaria experienced by children aged between five and seven months and cut the number of cases in babies aged 6 to 12 weeks by a quarter.

    The treatment’s protection lasted for 18 months, although it waned slightly over time, and while that is not the sort of efficacy that parents in Europe or the US are used to getting in the vaccines given to their children, the malaria vaccine would make a significant difference to the outlook for those in areas where the tropical disease is rife.

    Every year, around 660,000 people die from malaria, most of them small children under the age of five. There are about 219m cases of the disease a year worldwide, and children who survive the serious illness can suffer damage to their health and development in their lifetime afterwards.

    #santé #vaccin #pharma