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The new epidemiology: Infectious personalities

Google recently has been used to track the development of the flu by using the number of queries about flu symptoms and treatment as a measure of the spread of the disease. However, this is what is known as a lagging indicator because it reflects what has already happened, not what will happen in terms...

In a smallish room, body heat draws particles near, enhancing inhalation

Most models involving inhalation of particulates of various sorts (e.g., microbes, pollen, dust, toxins) assume a somewhat even distribution of the particulates in the air that is inhaled. While such an assumption helps to simplify exposure calculations, it is factually inaccurate in some circumstances...

Antibiotics and vaccines can act as selection factors for bacteria

As noted in prior posts, almost anything has the potential to act as an evolutionary selection factor. [Yes, Virginia, there really is evolution.] A recent assessment that traces the history of a virulent strain of pneumonia-causing bacteria demonstrates that both antibiotics and vaccines can act as...

Some bacteria found on grocery store meat are resistant to antibiotics, often many antibiotics

Prior posts have noted the unfortunate tendency in much of the world, including the U.S., to over prescribed antibiotics (even for conditions in which antibiotics are of no use whatsoever [e.g., viral infections]), resulting in disease-causing organisms that are resistant to many (if not almost all)...

Can antibiotics interfere with the body's ability to fight viruses? Perhaps so.

Prior posts have noted that abuse and misuse of antibiotics in people and animals has lead to an increase in antibiotic resistant organisms, to the detriment of human health. Prior posts have also noted the importance of bacteria to human health and welfare (and that there are 10 bacteria in the human...