NEWS SCAN: Prenatal pan flu exposure, H5N1 in Egypt, food recall expands, Boston biolab delay, malaria in US, MDR TB, Russian train quarantine

first_imgApr 16, 2009Prenatal pandemic flu exposure might have affected brainPrenatal exposure to the Hong Kong pandemic influenza strain of 1968-69 may have impaired fetal cerebral development and lowered adult intelligence scores, according to Norwegian researchers who reported their findings in the early online Mar 18 edition of Annals of Neurology. In reviewing the records of more than 180,000 Norwegian men born between 1967 and 1973 who performed compulsory military service, they found that intelligence scores for each birth year rose annually, except for 1970. The investigators also found that the intelligence scores of men born in July through October of that year—6 to 9 months after Hong Kong flu struck Norway—were lower than those of men born in the same months in 1969 and 1971. The pattern suggests that exposure during the first trimester of pregnancy affected intelligence, the authors wrote. They said the effect could have been due to fetal cerebral infection or to the mother’s immune response, high body temperature, or use of medications.[Apr 15 Wiley-Blackwell press release][Mar 18 Ann Neurol abstract]Egypt reports three fresh H5N1 outbreaksAnimal health officials in Egypt today reported that H5N1 avian influenza broke out in three governorates, according to Strengthening Avian Influenza Detection and Response (SAIDR). An outbreak in Giza governorate, detected through active surveillance, struck 25 mixed variety backyard birds. Officials in Kafr el Sheikh governorate reported an outbreak in 70 backyard chickens, and authorities in Sharkia governorate reported that preslaughter testing at a commercial farm in Mafarik Khodeir village detected the virus in some of the facility’s 3,500 chickens. The vaccination status of the birds wasn’t available in any of the three outbreaks.Salmonella-related food recall expanded to include oils, saucesUnion International Food Co., which recalled dry spices on Mar 30 because of possible Salmonella contamination, has expanded the recall to include various oils and sauces. In a notice posted on the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Web site, the Union City, Calif., company said it is expanding its recall of Lian How and Uncle Chen brand products to include all sauces, oils, and oil blends. The products come in containers ranging from 6 ounces to 1 gallon and were distributed to retailers, wholesalers, and distributors in California, Oregon, and Washington state. The original recall was prompted by the finding of Salmonella in some Lian How white pepper in connection with an outbreak. The company said the sauces and oils have not been linked to the outbreak, but it decided to recall the products out of caution.Safety review to delay opening of biodefense lab a year The opening of the new $192 million National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories at Boston University will be delayed another year while the National Institutes of Health (NIH) completes its longer-than-projected safety review, the Boston Globe reported today. The complete but vacant building is slated to include a biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) laboratory, meaning it can handle some of the world’s most dangerous pathogens. The NIH told a district court judge yesterday, in a court proceeding in a lawsuit filed by neighbors seeking to block the lab, that it hoped to submit its safety analysis by the spring or summer of 2010.[Apr 16 Boston Globe story]US had 1,505 malaria cases in 2007The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said today it received reports of 1,505 US cases of malaria in 2007, down slightly and nonsignificantly from the 1,564 cases reported in 2006. The highest estimated relative case rates were in civilians who traveled to West Africa. Among 701 case-patients who provided the information, 441 (62.9%) reported that they had not followed the preventive drug regimen recommended by the CDC for their travel destination. Plasmodium falciparum was the most common malaria species, identified in 43.4% of cases. There was one death, in a patient who had a P vivax infection.[CDC malaria surveillance report]Drug-resistant TB plagues former Soviet countries, parts of ChinaMultidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR TB) remains a serious threat in parts of China and in nine countries of the former Soviet Union, according to a report from the Global Project on Anti-Tuberculosis Drug Resistance Surveillance. In a study involving 90,736 patients in 83 countries, the median susceptibility to any drug in new cases of TB was 11.1%, according to the report in The Lancet. The prevalence of MDR TB (resistant to at least two first-line drugs) was 7% in two Chinese provinces and ranged from 6.8% to 22.3% in nine former Soviet countries, including 19.4% in Moldova and 22.3% in Baku, Azerbaijan. In addition, five former Soviet countries reported 25 or more cases of extensively drug-resistant TB. The study showed that MDR TB became less common in Hong Kong and the United States.[Lancet report on MDR TB]Train passenger’s death in Russia triggers quarantine of other ridersMore than 50 people were escorted off a train in central Russia and quarantined in a hospital yesterday after a Chinese woman on the train died of an unknown illness, according to multiple news reports. The woman, on a train bound for Moscow from far eastern Russia, died suddenly yesterday, according to a Reuters report today. Some reports yesterday suggested that she might have had SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), but World Health Organization spokeswoman Sari Setiogi said there was no confirmation of that, Reuters reported. An RIA Novosti report today quoted unidentified officials as saying the woman had an “acute respiratory viral infection” with “pulmonary and cerebral edema” and that blood samples were sent to Moscow for analysis. The story said 59 passengers were sent to a local hospital. The Chinese woman was accompanied by three family members, who all had slight fevers, the report said.[Apr 16 RIA Novosti report]last_img read more

Berkane slow Gor’s Confed Cup fairy-tale run

first_imgComing into the tie, Gor had an imperious run at home in continental football having lost or drawn none this season, but they could not sustain the momentum against the Moroccans.A congested fixture that saw them play four games in nine days and the players’ go slow on Saturday saw the reigning Kenyan champions’ preparedness for the game hugely punctured.Berkane opened the scoring in the 24th minute when Dayo connected from an Omar Namsaoui freekick inside the box unmarked. Geoffrey Ochieng had given away a cheap freekick and the home side was duly punished for the complacency.Gor Mahia’s Francis Mustafa attempts to go past RS Berkane’s Omar Namsaoui during their CAF Confederations Cup quarter final tie at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on April 7, 2019. PHOTO/Raymond MakhayaGor seemed to wake up just after conceding. In the opening exchanges of the game, they had struggled to create anything meaningful infront of goal and were often careless on possession.Two minutes after going down Gor were presented with an opportunity when a short corner floated into the area by Kenneth Muguna was parried into Charles Momanyi’s path, but he took a signature centre back’s finishing volleying the ball over from insider the box.In the 30th minute, a good change of play from skipper Oliech found Francis Kahata on the right with the midfielder cutting into the edge of the box on his favorite left foot before curling a beauty which keeper Abdelaali M’hamdi smothered over the bar.With the crowd raising their decibels, Gor were charged and had a flurry of chances with Berkane having their keeper M’hamdi to thank.Gor won a corner just a minute after Kahata’s chance, the ball landing on Boniface Omondi but his shot after taking a deflection inside the box was turned away by the keeper with the defense scrambling the ball away.Gor Mahia’s Lawrence Juma passes the ball under pressure from RS Berkane’s Amine El Kess during their CAF Confederations Cup quarter final tie at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on April 7, 2019. PHOTO/Raymond MakhayaAlmost immediately, another attack bore a corner for K’Ogalo and M’hamdi once again produced a superb save, tipping Charles Momanyi’s header away for another corner that was well defended this time round.Gor had pushed upfield trying to open up the Berkane defense but the Moroccans almost broke 2-0 up on the counter in the 36th minute when Namsaoui’s brilliant cross from the right found Kodjo Laba unmarked at the edge of the six yard box but his header went just over.Namsaoui once again created another brilliant opportunity for Berkane in the 42nd minute but it took a brilliant save from Fredrick Odhiambo to deny Bakre el Helali who had been sent through with a defense splitting through pass by the right back.On the turn, Omondi had a chance for Gor when Oliech put him through and a brilliant first touch opened up shooting space, but his effort went inches wide.Gor started the second half with an intention of going for the kill and 10 minutes in Omondi had a chance when he cited some good space ahead of him for a shot but his effort went over the bar.Gor Mahia’s Kenneth Muguna goes down under pressure from RS Berkane’s Amine El Kess during their CAF Confederations Cup quarter final tie at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on April 7, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluGor assistant coach Zedekiah Otieno, standing in for the suspended Hassan Oktay threw in his first change, Francis Mustafa coming off for Nicholas Kipkurui, much to the applause of the fans who had yearned for an attacking change.But, instead of putting up their bid for an equalizer, Gor found themselves 2-0 down when El Helali easily turned away from Philemon Otieno off an Namsaoui cross before slotting the ball into the top left corner.It was like a catastrophic stab on the belly for the Kenyan champions.They tried to cut down the deficit with Muguna attempting a curling effort from a freekick but it was easily picked out by the keeper.Zico made the second change, bringing off Omondi for Samuel Onyango, a decision that caused acrimony among the fans with one running across the width of the pitch after jumping off the stands to violently scream at the tactician before he was whisked away by police.He made another change, the heavily marked Oliech coming off for Erisa Ssekisambu. But, the Kenyan side’s attempt all came to futility as Berkane held off for the win to put one foot into the semi-finals.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000RS Berkane players celebrate one of their goals against Gor Mahia during their CAF Confederations Cup quarter final tie at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on April 7, 2019. PHOTO/Raymond MakhayaNAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 8 – Goals in either half from Issoufou Dayo and Bakre El Helali saw Moroccan side RS Berkane beat Gor Mahia 2-0 at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani to slow down the Kenyan champions’ fairy tale in the CAF Confederation Cup.Gor will now have a mountain to climb in the return leg of the quarter final in Berkane next week as they now need a win of three clear goals away from home to progress.last_img read more