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Science Alert: Experts Respond

FDA crackdown on antibacterial soaps – experts respond

John Kerr posted in on December 18th, 2013.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is calling on soap manufacturers to come clean about how effective antibacterial hands washes really are. The government watchdog this week issued a statement saying they expected manufacturers to prove that soaps labelled ‘antibacterial’ provide clear health benefits to balance any potential risks. The FDA said there currently […]

Infectious disease increases highlight inequality

John Kerr posted in on February 20th, 2012.

An extensive analysis of New Zealand hospital records has found that admissions for serious infectious diseases increased 51 per cent in the last two decades. The research, published in the leading international medical journal The Lancet and undertaken by Dr Michael Baker and his colleagues from the University of Otago, Wellington, also shows that Maori, […]

‘Flesh-eating’ bug in the news

John Kerr posted in on September 28th, 2011.

New research has found that the incidence of a tissue damaging bacterial infection – necrotising fascitits – is rising in New Zealand. National media have been quick to report on the increases in cases of ‘flesh-eating’ bacteria. The research, published in the Journal of Infection, shows that necrotising fascitits has risen from fewer than 10 […]

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Foot and mouth disease study questions need for mass culling

Dacia Herbulock posted in on May 6th, 2011.

Cattle infected with foot and mouth disease (FMD) are only infectious for a brief window of time, around half what was previously thought, according to a study published today in the journal Science. Outbreaks of the devastating virus, which affects cattle, sheep, pigs, deer and other animals, led to mass culling of livestock in the UK in […]

Vaccines and Immunisation

Peter Griffin posted in on June 18th, 2008.

What is immunisation? Immunisation is a way of preventing infectious diseases through the use of vaccines. How does the immune system fight infection? When a pathogen (such as a bacterium or virus) enters the body, the immune system recognises that the pathogen is foreign and prepares to fight the intruding organism using antibodies. If the […]

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