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What A Week It Was: Apocadocuments from
View By Scenario:
Species Collapse:(4)
Plague/Virus:(4)
Climate Chaos:(9)
Resource Depletion: (7)
Biology Breach:(14)
Recovery:(4)
This Week's Top Ten Very Scary Tags:
climate impacts  ~ contamination  ~ ecosystem interrelationships  ~ carbon emissions  ~ water issues  ~ ocean warming  ~ pandemic  ~ toxic water  ~ invasive species  ~ capitalist greed  ~ airborne pollutants  



ApocaDocuments (4) matching "pandemic" from this week
[see full week] ~ [see all stories tagged "pandemic"]
Thu, Aug 13, 2009
from Miller-McCune:
Playing Chicken With Antibiotic Resistance
...Citing concerns that injecting eggs with antibiotics "presents a risk to the public health," the FDA issued a rule in July 2008 that severely limited antibiotic use in hatcheries. The aim, the FDA said in a carefully reasoned statement backed by government studies from the U.S., Canada and Europe, was to restrict use of a class of antibiotics due to fears that misuse on farms reduced the antibiotics' effectiveness for humans a concern long voiced by the American Medical Association, the World Health Organization and public health agencies in numerous countries. Coming from a federal agency with sweeping legal powers and powerful law-enforcement capabilities, the FDA's rule was tough stuff or so it seemed at first. But that was before the powerful U.S. chicken lobby sometimes dubbed "Big Chicken" stepped in. Within weeks of the FDA's antibiotic prohibition, a barn burner of a fight, pitting scientists against farmers and physicians against veterinarians, ignited across the continent. Then, three weeks before the ban was to go into effect, FDA policymakers mindful of an earlier ban on antibiotic use in poultry that was won only after years of litigation suddenly abandoned their own ruling. ...


As long as we can ALL agree the sky is falling.

ApocaDoc
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Wed, Aug 12, 2009
from New Scientist:
Swine flu: How experts are preparing their families
As the swine flu pandemic continues to sweep the world, what do public health officials, epidemiologists and flu researchers think will happen in the coming months? When New Scientist asked 60 of them, it turned out that half are concerned enough about the possibility of a virulent swine flu outbreak to take precautions such as acquiring a supply of Tamiflu for their families. Though most do not think it likely that a nastier strain will emerge, many are worried that if it did, their local hospitals and other parts of the health infrastructure could not cope.... How likely is it that a more virulent strain will emerge? The majority of respondents did not rule it out: two thirds said they thought that higher virulence was "possible". Only a small proportion said it was "likely" (see table). One respondent, Laurence Tiley, a molecular virologist at the University of Cambridge, says there is no reason to expect that the virus will become substantially more virulent. There have been too few pandemics to make any concrete predictions, he explains. ...


I guess I'm half terrified, too.

ApocaDoc
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Tue, Aug 11, 2009
from BBC:
Flu drugs 'unhelpful' in children
Research has cast doubt on the policy of giving antiviral drugs to children for swine flu. Work in the British Medical Journal shows Tamiflu and Relenza rarely prevent complications in children with seasonal flu, yet carry side effects. Although they did not test this in the current swine flu pandemic, the authors say these drugs are unlikely to help children who catch the H1N1 virus. The government has stuck by its policy of offering them to anyone infected. ...


Can't we count on the placebo effect?

ApocaDoc
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Mon, Aug 10, 2009
from New York Times Op-Ed:
You say tomato, I say environmental disaster
But this year is turning out to be different -- quite different, according to farmers and plant scientists. For one thing, the disease appeared much earlier than usual. Late blight usually comes, well, late in the growing season, as fungal spores spread from plant to plant. So its early arrival caught just about everyone off guard. And then there's the perniciousness of the 2009 blight. The pace of the disease (it covered the Northeast in just a few days) and its strength (topical copper sprays, a convenient organic preventive, have been much less effective than in past years) have shocked even hardened Hudson Valley farmers.... According to plant pathologists, this killer round of blight began with a widespread infiltration of the disease in tomato starter plants. Large retailers like Home Depot, Kmart, Lowe's and Wal-Mart bought starter plants from industrial breeding operations in the South and distributed them throughout the Northeast. ...


At least we have big retailers to blame!

ApocaDoc
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