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Anthrax Attacks 10 Year Anniversary: BioCentury Looks at Preparedness

Anthrax

A decade ago in the weeks following the terrorist attacks of September 11th, the nation faced yet another terrorist threat. Letters containing anthrax spores were mailed to two U.S. senators and several media outlets, killing five people and sickening 17 others. It was the deadliest biological attack in U.S. history, and resulted in the largest and most expensive investigation in FBI history. Biosecurity experts believe that another bioterrorist attack is imminent, and the impact could Read More >

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Doggonn It! This Kitty May Be Researchers’ New Best Friend

Cat

The glow-in-the-dark cat is out of the bag. Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota have genetically modified domestic cats to resist the feline form of AIDS. As reported in the journal Nature Methods, this new achievement is a milestone in the ongoing quest to protect humans from the virus. And yes, these kitties glow in the dark. A green fluorescent protein was added to a gene from rhesus macaque monkeys that is known Read More >

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Research!America Report: Investment in Health Research Remains Stagnant

scientists

By Research!America The U.S. public and private sectors invested $140.5 billion in 2010 on research to find new ways to treat, cure and prevent disease and disability, according to Research!America’s latest annual estimate. Health research spending accounted for only 5.5% of the $2.6 trillion the U.S. spent on health care in 2010. Health research as a percentage of health care spending has hovered around 5.5% since 2005, remaining essentially stagnant. Investment in health research experienced Read More >

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“Contagion” Portrays Our Vulnerability to a Global Pandemic

yt

Earlier this month, the movie Contagion opened in theaters. With a star-studded cast including Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, and Gwyneth Paltrow, this action-thriller about the spread of a deadly virus is sure to attract a large audience. While Hollywood has been known to alter or exaggerate the facts to enhance the storyline, it is reported that Steven Soderbergh and his team aimed to realistically portray a pandemic. As Matt Damon stated in an IMDb interview, Read More >

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CDC Hosts Briefing on Adolescent Vaccination Coverage

Dr. Melinda Wharton

On August 25th the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) hosted a briefing on adolescent vaccination coverage. The briefing featured comments by Dr. Melinda Wharton, Deputy Director at the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD) at the CDC. While immunization rates for tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine and meningococcal vaccine saw double digit increases, Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination rates increased just slightly. In her remarks, Dr. Wharton emphasized the CDC’s disappointment in the poor adoption of the HPV vaccine. The Read More >

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