Archives for March, 2008

1980 marked a milestone in infectious disease epidemiology: the World Health Organization declared the smallpox virus eradicated in the wild. However, while smallpox currently exists only in frozen stocks, poxviruses as a class certainly haven’t disappeared. A related virus, monkeypox, regularly causes illness in Africa, and even spread half a world away in the American…

In this NY Times article on parents who are opting out of vaccinations, one mom notes her objections: “I refuse to sacrifice my children for the greater good,” said Sybil Carlson, whose 6-year-old son goes to school with several of the children hit by the measles outbreak [in San Diego]. The boy is immunized against…

As I mentioned Friday, the good folks from Google were part of the crowd at this year’s ICEID. This included a talk by Larry Brilliant, described on his wikipedia page as “…medical doctor, epidemiologist, technologist, author and philanthropist, and the director of Google’s philanthropic arm Google.org.” His talk discussed not only stopping outbreaks in their…

“One medicine, one health”

If one over-arching theme came out of this conference, it was the concept noted in the title: “one medicine, one health.” In one of the early lectures, a speaker polled the audience to find out how many attending were veterinarians, and how many worked in human health. The room was divided pretty evenly, which attests…

Irony

PZ got kicked out of a screening of Expelled, the latest ID propaganda movie–in which he’s featured. Someone else who’s in it? Richard Dawkins. Guess who PZ’s guest was–a guest who was let into the screening? Yep. Dawkins. The irony. The hypocrisy. Just incredible.

It’s been a busy 3 days here in Atlanta. My talk Tuesday was well-received, I have lots of new ideas for future projects, and I’ll have posts on the conference itself starting, hopefully, this afternoon (last night was family time, so no posting). In the meantime, I’m writing up the manuscript for the study I…

Black Plague series

Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 1: Objections to Y. pestis causation Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 2: Examination of the criticisms Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 3: Paleomicrobiology and the detection of Y. pestis in corpses Did Yersinia pestis really cause Black Plague? Part 4: Plague…

Off to Atlanta

Technically, I was supposed to be in Atlanta a good 3 hours ago, but our plane’s broken down here in Moline (where I’ve been for 7 hours and counting now). For the next few days, I’ll be at the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases (ICEID). Just scanning the schedule, there’s a ton of interesting…

Via Ed, if you puked on VoxDay’s shoes after his column earlier this week in WorldNetDaily: But this is not to say there is not a genuine threat to all three aspects of science today. Unsurprisingly, it comes from the same force that is the primary threat to the survival of Western civilization: female equalitarianism.…

After Karl Rove’s appearance here Sunday night, Laurie Garrett’s talk on Monday was downright uneventful–despite a talk which included discussion of AIDS, abortion, and welfare, among other things. Garrett, for anyone who may be unfamiliar, is currently a senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations. She’s the author of The Coming…