Effect Measure

Archives for December, 2007

There’s a lot of stuff about tainted food in the news, whether it is toxins in imports or questionable additives in US products (e.g., bisphenol A in hard plastics). This stuff is not on any food label, of course, but there is a lot of detailed stuff that is on labels and increased concern about…

Useless advice for public health officials

The Toronto Sun has another one of the “such and such a city/state/country isn’t prepared for a pandemic” stories. The judgment comes from the 2007 Auditor General of Ontario’s annual report. Yawn. Like it’s so easy to know what to do, right? Maybe not. So the Report has some recommendations:

Sharp pics from blurry ones

Forty years ago I was the only doc in a bioengineering lab in a famous technical university. We had our own computer — it took up a giant room — and had attached to it a rare device in those days, a scanner for converting transparencies to computer readable form. It was really a cathode…

In my Christmas stocking this morning I found a Season’s greeting from the excellent down-under medical/public health blog impactEDnurse. Here’s the card and the link to the little present that goes with it: I offer you up a nurses public service video on the best way to detect avian influenza: http://impactednurse.com/?p=428 Merry Christmas. And Gesundheit.

Explosives on a chip

There are computers on a chip and labs on a chip and now explosives on a chip. Explosives on a chip? WTF? This wonderful tech breakthrough is brought to us by Georgia Tech Research Institute and reported, straight-faced, by the Press Release service, Science Daily:

Big Pharma’s blind profits compromise

We’ve discussed the scandal over the use of Avastin and Lucentis for wet macular degeneration several times (here, here, here). If you’ve missed it, here’s the gist. Avastin is a drug approved to treat colon cancer. It works by choking off blood vessels to the tumor. It turns out, however, that a tiny dose of…

The mutated influenza pig virus story

The recent report of a novel influenza virus in pigs, the H2N3 subtype, has been raised some alarm in certain quarters. I just read the paper itself (doi: 10.1073/pnas.0710286104) and then the account in CIDRAP News, which is both accurate and complete. I recommend it highly as a summary of this work. I have a…

PZ and Greg Laden have ‘fessed up and long time readers know I write the same thing on my Sermonette each Christmas: I am a big fan of Christmas, godless bastard that I am. It is my favorite secular holiday and there is hardly anything about it I don’t like. Well, there are a few…

WHO [World Health Organization] is now saying that human to human (H2H) transmission has not been ruled out in China or Pakistan: China:

Poultry workers and drug resistant E. coli

Being a poultry worker, in any country is not wonderful. There’s the risk of bird flu, of course. And lots of opportunity to be seriously injured. And its strenuous, difficult, low paying and dirty work, which is why it employs so many undocumented workers. It also turns out it is a great way to pick…