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Scientists Take Huge Step Toward Universal Flu Vaccine

         

An illustration of the flu virus.   Credit: Sebastian Kaulitzki/Getty Images

CLICK HERE - Nature Medicine - Hemagglutinin-stem nanoparticles generate heterosubtypic influenza protection

CLICK HERE - Science - A stable trimeric influenza hemagglutinin stem as a broadly protective immunogen

The yearly flu shot could soon be a thing of the past.

huffingtonpost.com - by Joe Satran - August 28, 2015

A universal flu vaccine -- one that provides immunity against every strain of the influenza virus for multiple years -- is the holy grail of flu research. It would be a medical breakthrough on the order of penicillin, with the potential to save hundreds of thousands of lives every year. And scientists just got one crucial step closer to making it a reality.

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CLICK HERE - BBC - Flu Vaccine Breakthrough Claim by Scientists

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CDC Updates Ebola PPE Guidance for U.S. Health Care Facilities

CDC - American Hospital Association - August 27, 2015

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention today issued updated guidance regarding personal protective equipment for health care personnel caring for suspected and confirmed Ebola patients in U.S. health care facilities. The changes clarify the use of fluid-resistant and impermeable gowns and coveralls, and provide specifications to assist facilities in selecting and ordering the recommended garments. The updates also provide additional explanation related to PPE for confirmed Ebola patients. For more information, see the updated PPE Frequently Asked Questions.

http://news.aha.org/article/150827-cdc-updates-ebola-ppe-guidance-for-us-health-care-facilities

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This Graphic Explains Monday’s Stock Market Crash

         

How a slowdown in China can take money out of your pocket

time.com - by Alex Fitzpatrick and Heather Jones - August 24, 2015

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted more than 1,000 points Monday morning, taking millions of Americans’ 401(k) plans down with it. While stocks regained some of their lost ground by Monday afternoon, continued uncertainty over factors as far-ranging as China’s economy to global commodity prices could continue to wreak havoc on the markets for the rest of the week and beyond.

How can an economic slowdown in China take money out of your pocket? Check out the TIME infographic (in the link) below to learn more:

(CLICK HERE - TIME infographic)

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Climate Action Tracker

           

climateactiontracker.org

The "Climate Action Tracker" is an independent science-based assessment, which tracks the emission commitments and actions of countries. The website provides an up-to-date assessment of individual national pledges, targets and INDCs and currently implemented policy to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

CLICK HERE - Climate Action Tracker

CLICK HERE - ABOUT - Climate Action Tracker

CLICK HERE - Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) as Communicated by Parties

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Stock Market Plunge Wipes Out This Year’s Gains

            

washingtonpost.com - by Thad Moore and Drew Harwell - August 21, 2015

A worldwide sell-off pushed U.S. stocks to their worst week since 2011 as spooked investors scattered amid worries of an economic slowdown in China and the potential for higher interest rates at home.

The Dow Jones industrial average capped a four-day losing streak by dropping more than 500 points to close at 16,459.75, sinking 10 percent from its May peak and following even steeper market declines in Asia and Europe.

The rout will further rattle workers whose 401(k) retirement accounts have taken a troubling hit. Investors have lost billions in recent weeks and are flocking to safety-net Treasury bonds as they wait for the bleeding to stop.

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Cheap Paper Test to Screen Patients for Ebola, Yellow Fever, Dengue

MEDGADGET                                                                                   Aug. 20, 2015

BOSTON --At the 250th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society this week, researchers from MIT, Harvard Med School, and the FDA are showing off a new field test that can quickly screen people for Ebola, yellow fever, and dengue. While the researchers don’t claim their technique to be as accurate as PCR and ELISA, it is nevertheless an excellent tool in poor areas of the world where these diseases tend to thrive.

The test doesn’t require any water or electricity nor any complicated and expensive equipment. It works similar to pregnancy tests, providing a color readout that signals whether a disease is detected that is easily readable by just about anyone.

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Using Public-Private Partnerships to Combat Ebola Globally

           

The Completed Containerized Biocontainment Systems Units at Dobbins Air Force Base, in Marietta, Georgia

blogs.state.gov - by Andrew O'Brien - August 13, 2015

In treating Ebola internationally, U.S. government personnel, doctors, nurses, aid workers, and other global health professionals are often put in direct contact with Ebola, and unfortunately some contract the virus themselves. Yet with limited resources, the U.S. Department of State needed more capacity to safely transport these Ebola patients to treatment facilities. Additionally, availability of medevac is important to getting doctors and epidemiologists from all over the world to volunteer to join the Ebola response.

By partnering with the Paul G. Allen Family Fund we were able to confront this challenge head on. Two containerized medevac biocontainment systems were funded by a $5 million grant by the Paul G. Allen Family Fund and the units were unveiled on August 11th at an event recognizing the partnership. MRIGlobal, a leading research institute, built the units, which are fully equipped to transport four patients, contain a broader array of dangerous pathogens, and fly aboard both military and civilian aircraft to multiple destinations in a single mission.

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How The Department of Defense Helped Confront Ebola

GEORGETOWN PUBLIC POICY REVIEW by Col.Russell E. Coleman   Aug. 12, 2015
WASHNGTON -- More than 10,000 people have died of Ebola virus disease (EVD) since the outbreak in West Africa began in December 2013. An epidemic of this magnitude, whether naturally occurring or caused by a biowarfare agent, could compromise both the U.S. health care system and the U.S. military’s ability to defend this country and its allies.


This possibility, long recognized by the Department of Defense (DoD), drives the department’s development of medical countermeasures. The response to the current Ebola outbreak demonstrates how DoD prepares for a medical threat without knowing (1) where it will happen, (2) when it might happen, (3) what the disease will be, and (4) what local resources will be immediately available.

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http://gppreview.com/2015/08/12/how-the-department-of-defense-helped-confront-ebola/

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Physicians: Global Vaccine Development Fund Could Save Billions

PHARMACEUTICAL PROCESSING by  Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs   Aug. 6, 2015

Ebola is a preventable disease, and yet a safe and effective vaccine has not been deployed. As with many vaccines, financial barriers persist: pharmaceutical companies see high costs with limited market potential, and government support is lacking. But there may be a solution to this vaccine crisis with the ability to save at-risk populations, according to a perspective piece written by physicians based at Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania and the Wellcome Trust.

The article, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, proposes the creation of a $2 billion global vaccine-development fund - supported by governments, foundations and pharmaceutical companies - that would carry promising vaccines through development to deployment. With initial support, the global vaccine fund could help make vaccines available for emergency use.

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Disastrous Sea Level Rise Is an Issue for Today's Public - Not Next Millennium's

             

huffingtonpost.com - by Dr. James Hansen - July 27, 2015

. . . 2°C global warming, rather than being a safe "guardrail," is highly dangerous. . . .

. . . My conclusion, based on the total information available, is that continued high emissions would result in multi-meter sea level rise this century and lock in continued ice sheet disintegration such that building cities or rebuilding cities on coast lines would become foolish. . . .

. . . A startling conclusion of our paper is that effects of freshwater release onto the Southern Ocean and North Atlantic are already underway and 1-2 decades sooner in the real world than in the model (Fig. 2). 

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CLICK HERE - Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics - Earth's energy imbalance and implications

CLICK HERE - Ice Melt, Sea Level Rise and Superstorms: Evidence from Paleoclimate Data, Climate Modeling, and Modern Observations that 2°C Global Warming is Highly Dangerous

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