Archives for October, 2012

Carl Zimmer: ‘Our viral future’

YAY! Author Carl Zimmer: Our Viral Future from Singularity Institute on FORA.tv ONE QUIBBLE: Viruses are not ‘bad news wrapped in protein’.  The vast vast vast majority of the viruses out there want nothing to do with humans at all. Even the ones that do infect humans, lots dont actually cause us any real harm,…

NICE! Gene therapy of pancreatic cancer targeting the K-Ras oncogene Cancer sucks, but some kinds of cancers suck worse than others.  One that really sucks is pancreatic cancer.  From the intro of this paper: Pancreatic cancer (PC) is the fourth leading cause of cancer death among men and women, comprising 6% of all cancer-related death.…

HPV Vaccine: DRAT! Foiled again!

Wull… What the hell is the point in a whore vaccine that doesnt turn little girls into whores?? Boy, I hope some scientists are losing their membership in The Evil League of Evil over this: Sexual Activity–Related Outcomes After Human Papillomavirus Vaccination of 11- to 12-Year-Olds Risk of the composite outcome (any pregnancy/sexually transmitted infection…

Oh lawd oh lawd. Some folks at Emory investigated the differences in understanding vaccines between parents who got a lot of vaccine info from the internet, and parents who didnt. Oh lawd. Parents’ Source of Vaccine Information and Impact on Vaccine Attitudes, Beliefs, and Nonmedical Exemptions The good news is, this article is Open Access. …

Mega-doses of vitamins *hurt* HIV patients

An outcome some of you might expect, but for reasons you probably dont expect– Let me tell you the punchline first: Effect of High-Dose vs Standard-Dose Multivitamin Supplementation at the Initiation of HAART on HIV Disease Progression and Mortality in Tanzania, A Randomized Controlled Trial Scientists had a pool of patients (over 3000) with HIV…

Six degrees of Virophages

Its like ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’, except with virophages!  And in my case, it seems to be closer to two or three degrees. Its happened again. Provirophages and transpovirons as the diverse mobilome of giant viruses Edited by James L. Van Etten, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE Dr. Van Etten is one of my…

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I get migraine headaches. They crack me up– My mom and bro get them too– but we all have different triggers, different warning signs, different migraine course/severity, different solutions, it doesnt make any sense. I think mine are pretty funny.  I start out by feeling warm.  Not ‘hot’, but like, you know how when you…

Lets play a game. Think of a human disease.  Any disease.  Viral, bacterial, genetic, acquired, anything. Im pretty sure that no matter what disease you just thought of, there is a scientist, somewhere, trying to use a virus to cure/treat that disease. As I was doing my rounds on PubMed, looking for cool new research,…

HIV-cure-woo alive and well in Africa

There are some HIV-woo ideas that I cannot believe we are still dealing with in 2012. 1. ‘Condoms dont stop HIV’ – Actually, they do.  Really, really well.  Better than any ‘prophylactic antiretroviral’ (with no side-effects).  Virus cant evolve resistance to condoms.  Virus cant swim through the tiny holes in the structure of latex.  Condoms…

GMO HSV-1 vs Brain Cancer

Orac wrote yesterday about the abominable union between anti-vaxers and anti-GMOers: “Genetically modified” vaccines and GMOs: Sapping and impurifying all our precious bodily fluids? My ‘message’ to these kinds of people?  Get over it.  Fast.  Because you look ridiculous. Skinner: Im telling you people, the earth revolves around the sun! Abe: Burn him! [lights the…