Archive for the ‘health’ category

May 31, 2020

Sylvester, Miami Cancer Institute studying stem cells, cancer drugs to treat COVID-19

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

With more and more people contracting COVID-19, physician-scientists around the world are looking at existing drugs as potential treatments for the novel coronavirus.

Among them are cancer researchers launching new clinical trials or participating in multi-site ones to see whether drugs proven to be effective for another disease, particularly cancer, can help in treating COVID-19 cases.

At Miami Cancer Institute, part of Baptist Health South Florida, researchers are conducting several trials to investigate whether existing cancer drugs might provide some kind of therapy for COVID-19. The rationale: Cancer patients have similar immune system problems as coronavirus patients — namely, dangerous inflammation — and these medications effectively attack that problem.

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May 30, 2020

Detection of Explosives

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, health, security, terrorism

Circa 2007

This chapter describes detection of explosives by terahertz Imaging ™. There has been an amplified interest in terahertz (THz) detection for imaging of covered weapons, explosives, chemical and biological agents. THz radiation is readily transmitted through most nonmetallic and nonpolar mediums. This process enables the THz systems to see through concealing barriers, which includes packaging, corrugated cardboard, clothing, shoes, book bags, and such others to find potentially dangerous materials concealed within. Apart from many materials of interest for security applications, which include explosives, chemical agents, and other such biological agents that have characteristic THz spectra which can be used for fingerprint testing and identify concealed materials. The Terahertz radiation poses either no or minimal health risk to either a suspect being scanned by a THz system or the system’s operator. As plastic explosives, fertilizer bombs, and chemical and biological agents increasingly become weapons of war and terrorism, and the trafficking of illegal drugs increasingly develops as a systemic threat, effective means for rapid detection, and an identification of these threats are required. One proposed solution for locating, detecting, and characterizing concealed threats is to use THz electromagnetic waves to spectroscopically detect and identify concealed materials through their characteristic transmission or reflectivity spectra in the range of 0.5–10 THz.

May 29, 2020

COVID-19 immunity lasts only six months, reinfection possible

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Since there is no treatment or vaccine for the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19 — the disease to which it leads — the only way to stop its spread is through social distancing and good hygiene. As such, long-term protective immunity could impact the overall course of the pandemic, the post-pandemic period and any subsequent waves. Until now, this concept has been a key component of the Health Ministry’s second wave strategy.

The Health Ministry recently revealed that it had purchased serological tests with the aim of surveying as many as 1 million people to determine how much of the public has been infected. Since around 80% of people who get the virus show little or no symptoms, they can carry and spread it without knowing.

However, “serology-based tests that measure previous infections for SARS‐CoV‐2 may have limited use if that infection has occurred more than one year prior to sampling,” the Amsterdam researchers explained.

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May 29, 2020

Letting off electrons to cope with metabolic stress

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food, genetics, health

Whereas textbooks depict metabolism in perfect homeostasis, disturbances occur in real life. One particularly relevant disturbance, caused by excess food and alcohol consumption and exacerbated by genetics, is reductive stress. New work by Goodman et al. identifies a biomarker of reductive stress and uses a gene therapy solution in mice. This work suggests how exercise and an accessible nutritional technology can synergistically increase catabolism and relieve reductive stress.

May 26, 2020

Scientists Test Best Fabric Choices for Making a Homemade COVID Mask

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

UIUC Editor’s note: Health authorities believe COVID-19 spreads by the transmission of respiratory droplets, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends homemade cloth face coverings for use in public spaces. Starting today, Illinois joins many other states in requiring people to wear masks while out. However, initial uncertainty regarding the masks’ effectiveness in reducing exhaled droplets leaves some people unsure or skeptical of their usefulness during the current COVID-19 pandemic. Mechanical science and engineering professor Taher Saif spoke with News Bureau physical sciences editor Lois Yoksoulian about a study that he and his graduate students, Onur Aydin and Bashar Emon, performed on the effectiveness of common household fabrics for use in homemade masks.

Physically speaking, are the respiratory droplets produced by talking and breathing the same as those that come from a cough or a sneeze?

The droplets released during sneezing and coughing are larger than those released while speaking and breathing, and any of these droplets may carry many virus particles. The larger droplets tend to fall nearby due to gravity, but the smaller ones can go far, with the majority of them remaining within six feet of the infected individual. Unfortunately, because symptomatic, presymptomatic and asymptomatic carriers can shed the coronavirus, we cannot tell without testing which individuals are the sources of infection. Hence, a physical barrier, such as a mask, can prevent the spreading.

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May 26, 2020

Vietnam best Covid-19 fighter in the world: Politico

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, economics, government, health

The prestigious news outlet mapped the performance of 30 leading economies by plotting their public health and economic outcomes and grouping them based on whether they have instituted light, moderate or severe restrictions on commerce and social interactions.

The matrix included countries and territories’ economic outcomes, including the benchmarks of GDP, unemployment and fiscal stimulus packages and health outcomes based on testing, infection and death statistics provided by health ministries and government authorities and graphed by Worldometer and Johns Hopkins University.

As seen in the ranking chart, Vietnam stands at the furthest end with “better public health outcome,” with Taiwan coming close, followed by New Zealand, South Korea, Iceland, Argentina and Australia.

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May 25, 2020

Covi-Pass™ | Health Authenticated

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Covi-Pass™️ can manage the end-to-end (including product tagging) process from test to secure Digital Health Passport. COVI-PASS™️ is agnostic to any Covid-19 test brand or source, and can integrate with all global COVID test manufacturers.

During this global Covid-19 pandemic, the world is searching for a secure solution, to hold test, immunoresponse information, and vaccination details for now and into the future. COVI-PASS™️ has been developed to be the world’s most secure Digital Health Passport solution.

May 25, 2020

A return to the wild for better immune health

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Wise — A research team led by the University of Adelaide has found that revegetation of green spaces within cities can improve soil microbiota diversity towards a more natural, biodiverse state, which has been linked to human health benefits. In the study, published in the journal Restoration Ecology, researchers compared the composition of a variety of urban green space vegetation types of varying levels of vegetation diversity, including lawns, vacant lots, parklands, revegetated woodlands and remnant woodlands within the City of Playford Council area in South Australia.

The purpose of the research was to understand whether it is possible to restore the microbiome of urban green spaces, a process known as microbiome rewilding. It is believed this process could expose us to a greater variety and number of microbiota (organisms living within a specific environment) and provide a form of immune system training and regulation.

Lead author of the journal paper, PhD Candidate Jacob Mills from the University of Adelaide’s School of Biological Sciences and Environment Institute, says historically humans lived in more rural and wild landscapes, and children spent more of their childhood outdoors, allowing exposure to more microbes.

May 25, 2020

Compelling Evidence Shows Electroceutical Fabric Eradicates Coronaviruses on Contact

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

With the number of novel coronavirus infections over 5 million and growing as of May 24, use of personal protective equipment, or PPE, has become essential to safeguard health care providers against COVID-19. Coronavirus particles that attach to PPE surfaces pose a significant threat to the spread of the virus.

A team of researchers at Indiana University has published significant research findings via pre-print in ChemRxiv demonstrating for the first time that coronaviruses are killed upon exposure to an electroceutical fabric.

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May 24, 2020

How Laughter Yoga Heals, Plus 6 Fun Exercises to Try

Posted by in category: health

As I lie on a wooden floor stretched out in Savasana (Corpse Pose), my mind is calm after an hour of vigorous exercise and deep breathing. The people around me are still and the room is quiet, save for the sounds of slow, gentle inhalation and exhalation. It could be the final moments of any yoga class. But then the man next to me suddenly lets out a thunderous guffaw. Across the room, a woman giggles in response. Soon the entire room is alive with sound—chortles and chuckles, hearty laughs and howling hoots. It’s not any class. It’s Laughter Yoga.

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