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WHO | Novel coronavirus infection – update

WHO | Novel coronavirus infection – update | Virology News | Scoop.it
The United Kingdom (UK) has informed WHO of another confirmed case of infection with the novel coronavirus (NCoV). The patient is a UK resident and a relative of the case announced on 11 February 2013.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

This looks like person-to-person transmission; they also say the new case is a person who has "pre-existing medical conditions that may have increased susceptibility to respiratory infections".  So: like SARS, a nasty disease that can be transmitted between humans.  Let's hope it goes no further!  Thanks @cupton1!

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Virology News
Topical news snippets about viruses that affect people.  And other things. Like zombies B-)
Curated by Ed Rybicki
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Ebola - 5 vaccine lessons

More than a year on from the start of the Ebola epidemic, the world has been hard at work trying to learn from the factors that have so far contributed to over 11,000 deaths.

Despite promising results from the recent Ebola vaccine trials, there are still signs that important lessons about research, health systems and vaccine preparedness have yet to be learned. Here, Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, draws them out in a TED talk delivered earlier this year in Vancouver.
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Effectiveness of less than three doses of Gardasil

Effectiveness of less than three doses of Gardasil | Virology News | Scoop.it
Background

Optimised two-dose human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine schedules are now endorsed for young adolescents by the World Health Organization. Limited data are available about effectiveness of <3 doses using a standard dose schedule.

Methods

Deterministic data linkage was undertaken between the Victorian Cervical Cytology Registry and National HPV Vaccination Program Register to determine quadrivalent HPV vaccination status and incidence of cervical pathology among vaccine eligible women (aged 26 years or younger in 2007) screened in Victoria, Australia between April 2007 and December 2011. Proportional hazards regression was used to estimate hazard ratios (HR) adjusted for age, socioeconomic status and area of residence. Women were stratified into those vaccinated before or after first screen.

Results

Any number of doses (1, 2 or 3) were associated with lower rates of high grade and low grade cytology diagnoses as long as doses were given before screening commencement (one dose HR high grade 0.44 (95% CI 0.32–0.59), one dose low grade 0.48 (95% CI 0.40–0.58); two doses HR high grade 0.63 (95% CI 0.50–0.80), HR low grade 0.52 (95% CI 0.44–0.61); three doses HR high grade 0.53 (95% CI 0.47–0.60), HR low grade 0.73 (95% CI 0.68–0.78)). Three doses of vaccine, but not fewer, were associated with reduced risk of high grade histologically confirmed abnormality in this cohort, regardless of whether vaccination occurred before or after screening (HR before 0.71 (95% CI 0.64–0.80), HR after 0.87 (95% CI 0.82–0.93)). Secondary analyses censoring end points occurring within 1, 6, 12, or 24 months of final vaccine dose suggested an increasing effect of partial vaccination courses over time.

Conclusion

Our data suggest that less than three doses of quadrivalent HPV vaccine provides some protection against cervical intraepithelial neoplasia, even when measured within 5 years in a population including those who were sexually active at the time of vaccination.

  
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New journal - and Open Access!

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Ebola epidemic : Nature News & Comment

Ebola epidemic : Nature News & Comment | Virology News | Scoop.it

Even if Ebola has faded from the headlines, the danger remains. As the largest and most deadly outbreak of Ebola winds down, scientists and public health officials are looking closely at what it will take to finish the job and to prepare better for the next big crisis. The apparent success of a nimble and creative clinical trial for a vaccine is a positive and instructive outcome. But many of the most important lessons come from failures in preparedness.

 
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Bio-Control of Salmonella Enteritidis in Foods Using Bacteriophages

Bio-Control of Salmonella Enteritidis in Foods Using Bacteriophages | Virology News | Scoop.it
Two lytic phages, vB_SenM-PA13076 (PA13076) and vB_SenM-PC2184 (PC2184), were isolated from chicken sewage and characterized with host strains Salmonella Enteritidis (SE) ATCC13076 and CVCC2184, respectively. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that they belonged to the family Myoviridae. The lytic abilities of these two phages in liquid culture showed 104 multiplicity of infection (MOI) was the best in inhibiting bacteria, with PC2184 exhibiting more activity than PA13076. The two phages
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Good current stuff - and something that I bet is going to get a lot more important as time goes on.

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The entire African continent has been declared free of ‘wild’ polio cases

The entire African continent has been declared free of ‘wild’ polio cases | Virology News | Scoop.it
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has announced that the entire African continent has been free of wild polio cases for the past year, thanks to a dedicated vaccine campaign. This means that no one has been infected with the virus anywhere in...
Ed Rybicki's insight:

I hope it lasts - I SOOOOOOO hope it lasts! But all it takes is one hajji coming home, where they met another from Afghanistan or Pakistan, or a merchant coming.....

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Back to School Tips for Avoiding the Wart Virus

Back to School Tips for Avoiding the Wart Virus | Virology News | Scoop.it
It’s back to school time. Are you prepared for everything kids will be bringing home? There’s homework, new friends and for many, viruses.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Ah, the innocence of youth: when the only papillomaviruses to fear are the ones on your hands and feet...B-)

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The Vaccine Debate: Should We Vaccinate Our Children?

The Vaccine Debate: Should We Vaccinate Our Children? | Virology News | Scoop.it
our natural immune system, that has been known to fight off any virus, any bacteria that there is.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Are we STILL "debating" this??  Maybe we should just let Darwin rule, and hope al these denialists get culled.

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'Molecular microscope' finds hidden AIDS virus in the body

'Molecular microscope' finds hidden AIDS virus in the body | Virology News | Scoop.it
A powerful new technique promises to help cure efforts
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Answering human papillomavirus vaccine concerns

Answering human papillomavirus vaccine concerns | Virology News | Scoop.it
Since the introduction of the HPV vaccine, questions have been asked about its efficacy in preventing cancer linked with HPV. Concerns about the HPV vaccine safety profile have also been raised. This paper highlights the rapidly growing body of evidence (including clinical trials and post-marketing surveillance) illustrating both the safety of the HPV vaccine, through a detailed investigation of reported adverse events, and its efficacy in reducing both HPV infections rates and the resulting drop in cervical lesions, which have been demonstrated to be good predictors of cervical cancer risk

 

HPV and cervical cancer graphic by Russell Kightley Media.

Ed Rybicki's insight:

VERY useful paper - can't think how I missed it!

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Ancient Emergence of Primate Lentiviruses

Ancient Emergence of Primate Lentiviruses | Virology News | Scoop.it
lentiviruses closely related to modern SIVs were present in Africa and infecting the ancestors of Cercopithecine primates as far back as 16 million years ago
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Hopefully this puts a nail in the still-slightly-popular-among-crackpots idea that HIV was cobbled together from two other retroviruses in a lab sometime in the 1970s!

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Expression of a single gene lets scientists easily grow hepatitis C virus in the lab | Newswire

Expression of a single gene lets scientists easily grow hepatitis C virus in the lab | Newswire | Virology News | Scoop.it
Worldwide, 185 million people have chronic hepatitis C. Since the late 1980s, when scientists discovered the virus that causes the infection, they have struggled to find ways to grow it in human cells in the lab — an essential part of learning how the virus works and developing new effective treatments.

In a study published in Nature on August 12, scientists led by The Rockefeller University’s Charles M. Rice, Maurice R. and Corinne P. Greenberg Professor in Virology and head of the Laboratory of Virology and Infectious Disease, report that when they overexpressed a particular gene in human liver cancer cell lines, the virus could easily replicate. This discovery allows study of naturally occurring forms of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in the lab.


A red flag: Researchers engineered cultured cells to contain a red marker that moves into the nucleus upon HCV infection. Nothing happened when normal cells were exposed to HCV (top), but when the researchers expressed the protein SEC14L2, some nuclei changed color from blue to purple (bottom).
“Being able to easily culture HCV in the lab has many important implications for basic science research,” says Rice. “There is still much we don’t understand about how the virus operates, and how it interacts with liver cells and the immune system.”

 

Hepatitis C virus graphic from Russell Kightley Media

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Last Ebola virus transmission chain announced in Sierra Leone

Last Ebola virus transmission chain announced in Sierra Leone | Virology News | Scoop.it
Health professionals recently announced that an entire epidemiological week has passed without any new Ebola cases in Sierra Leone, which is the first time this has happened since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak.
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The World If… malaria drugs stop working

Malaria is one of the world’s biggest killers. And our best weapon against it is at risk. We’re in a race against evolution – but what happens if we lose? Fi...
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A Man Shed Live Polio Virus In His Stool For 28 Years

A Man Shed Live Polio Virus In His Stool For 28 Years | Virology News | Scoop.it
That's the longest span for one individual to excrete the live virus in history. It's not the norm, that's for certain. But how much of a concern is it in the war to wipe out polio?
Ed Rybicki's insight:

So - now for replacement of the live virus with killed and/or subunit - and preferably VLPs!!

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The growing global battle against blood-sucking ticks

The growing global battle against blood-sucking ticks | Virology News | Scoop.it
Scientists have no shortage of ideas about how to stop tick-borne illnesses. What is holding them back?
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The cannabis experiment

The cannabis experiment | Virology News | Scoop.it
As marijuana use becomes more acceptable, researchers are scrambling to answer key questions about the drug.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Groovy, man...B-)

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Papers with shorter titles get more citations

Papers with shorter titles get more citations | Virology News | Scoop.it
Intriguing correlation mined from 140,000 papers.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

...which is why my next one will HAVE to be: "Tobacco necrosis virus is a phage".  Been wanting to do that for 20 years.  But I'll have t PROVE it first....

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The Origin of the Variola Virus

The Origin of the Variola Virus | Virology News | Scoop.it

The question of the origin of smallpox, one of the major menaces to humankind, is a constant concern for the scientific community. Smallpox is caused by the agent referred to as the variola virus (VARV), which belongs to the genus Orthopoxvirus. In the last century, smallpox was declared eradicated from the human community; however, the mechanisms responsible for the emergence of new dangerous pathogens have yet to be unraveled. Evolutionary analyses of the molecular biological genomic data of various orthopoxviruses, involving a wide range of epidemiological and historical information about smallpox, have made it possible to date the emergence of VARV. Comparisons of the VARV genome to the genomes of the most closely related orthopoxviruses and the examination of the distribution their natural hosts’ ranges suggest that VARV emerged 3000 to 4000 years ago in the east of the African continent. The VARV evolution rate has been estimated to be approximately 2 × 10−6 substitutions/site/year for the central conserved genomic region and 4 × 10−6 substitutions/site/year for the synonymous substitutions in the genome. Presumably, the introduction of camels to Africa and the concurrent changes to the climate were the particular factors that triggered the divergent evolution of a cowpox-like ancestral virus and thereby led to the emergence of VARV.

 

Variola virus picture by Russell Kightley Media

Ed Rybicki's insight:

Great stuff!  So Variola came from camels, and the virus that we use to protect against it comes from horses!

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Yield Loss to Virus not as Heavy as Expected

Yield Loss to Virus not as Heavy as Expected | Virology News | Scoop.it
TWIN FALLS • Losses from a grain virus disease appear to be lighter than anticipated but that doesn’t mean the disease is gone.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Ah, my old friend, BYDV: people think about mosquitoes and West Nile or yellow fever; they forget the yellow fever of plants - spread by aphids.  Just as nasty, if you're a plant - with no vaccines.

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Mystery of Oscar Wilde’s wife’s death solved

Mystery of Oscar Wilde’s wife’s death solved | Virology News | Scoop.it
Holland and Robins, a specialist at the University of Cape Town Medical School in South Africa, have written a paper, based on the medical evidence surrounding Constance’s death, which will be published in The Lancet, a leading medical journal.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

These UCT people get everywhere...B-)

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Epstein-Barr virus vaccine successful in animal testing

Epstein-Barr virus vaccine successful in animal testing | Virology News | Scoop.it
Scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a branch of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), recently created a vaccine for Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) that has proven successful in mice as well as nonhuman primates.
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Assessing the Evidence Supporting Fruit Bats as the Primary Reservoirs for Ebola Viruses

Assessing the Evidence Supporting Fruit Bats as the Primary Reservoirs for Ebola Viruses | Virology News | Scoop.it
Ecohealth. 2015 Aug 13. [Epub ahead of print]

Since their discovery 40 years ago, Ebola viruses (in the following: EBOV; family Filoviridae, genus Ebolavirus) continue to emerge unpredictably and cause Ebola virus disease (EVD) in humans and susceptible animals in tropical Africa (Leroy et al. 2004; Feldmann and Geisbert 2011). The scale of the current epidemic in West Africa demonstrates the impact that a single spillover event can have (Baize et al. 2014; Gire et al. 2014). Meanwhile, the reservoir(s) and ecology of EBOV remain largely unknown (Groseth et al. 2007; Feldmann and Geisbert 2011), hampering prediction of future outbreaks. To date, the only laboratory-confirmed sources of human EVD outbreaks were infected great apes and duikers (Leroy et al. 2004). However, these species are unlikely reservoirs as high mortality rates rule out an indefinite infection chain (Leroy et al. 2004; Bermejo et al. 2006; Wittmann et al. 2007). Scientists are therefore searching for other hosts where EBOV circulate without major negative effects; fruit bats have received the most research attention and are frequently referred to as the reservoir for African EBOV (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2014b; O’Shea et al. 2014; World Health Organization 2014). We review current evidence and highlight that fruit bats may not represent the main, or the sole, reservoir. We discuss evidence implicating insectivorous bats and reiterate that bats themselves might not be the ultimate reservoir for EBOV. Knowing which species are involved will facilitate an understanding of factors allowing spillover to susceptible human and wildlife populations (Viana et al. 2014; Plowright et al. 2015).

 

New Ebolavirus graphic from Russell Kightley Media

Ed Rybicki's insight:

It was always going to be more complicated than just bats - ever since Bob Swanepoel went to Kikwit, gazed at the forest, and "I could see Ebola looking back at me"....

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Magnetic fields could guide experimental cancer-killing viruses to tumours

Magnetic fields could guide experimental cancer-killing viruses to tumours | Virology News | Scoop.it
A new technique using an MRI scanner to move cancer-fighting viruses towards tumours could improve an experimental cancer treatment.
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DNA Synthetic Vaccine May Protect Against MERS Virus

DNA Synthetic Vaccine May Protect Against MERS Virus | Virology News | Scoop.it
Just as new cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome are cropping up in Saudi Arabia, researchers say a new vaccine may help prevent the spread of MERS around the world.
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Can a cinematic killer virus survive real-life scientific scrutiny?

Can a cinematic killer virus survive real-life scientific scrutiny? | Virology News | Scoop.it
Most of us have sat through a science fiction movie, relished the plot and the suspense – and then got home wondering what was fact or fiction.
Ed Rybicki's insight:

Spoiler: no.  Getting one monkey to respond to a vaccine, then rushing it to manufacture...never happen.  But it would have been nice if they had acknowledged the software they used to show the recombination between their viruses: written by Darren Martin, here in Cape Town. Appropriated by the movie makers (or possibly their scientific advisers) without so much as a thank you.

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