WHO releases report on antimicrobial resistance plans.
Antimicrobial resistance has been detected in all parts of the world; it is one of the greatest
challenges to global public health today, and the problem is increasing. Although antimicrobial
resistance is a natural phenomenon, it is being propagated by misuse of antimicrobial
medicines, inadequate or inexistent programmes for infection prevention and control (IPC),
poor-quality medicines, weak laboratory capacity, inadequate surveillance and insufficient
regulation of the use of antimicrobial medicines.
A strong, collaborative approach will be required to combat antimicrobial resistance, involving
countries in all regions and actors in many sectors. Over a 2-year period, from 2013 to
2014, WHO undertook an initial “country situation analysis” in order to determine the extent
to which effective practices and structures to address antimicrobial resistance were already
in place and where gaps remained. The survey was conducted in countries in each of the six
Alfred Donné’s microscopic daguerreotypes described the cellular symptoms of leukemia for the first time.
In 1837, over the objections of skeptical colleagues, Alfred François Donné set up 20 microscopes at his own expense in the lecture hall of the Medical Faculty of Paris. There, he provided practical microscopy lessons to students. His goal was to make microscopy a standard part of medical practice, an aim he had already championed with the invention of a foldable pocket microscope.
When Louis Daguerre presented his brand-new photographic technique in 1839, Donné leapt at the chance to modify it to capture his microscopic images to spice up his lectures to ever-growing audiences. Donné’s adoption of such cutting-edge technology established him as a pioneer in the use of photographs—rather than hand-drawn sketches—to communicate scientific discoveries.
A Silicon Valley start-up with some big-name backers is threatening to upend genetic screening for breast andovarian cancer by offering a test on a sample of saliva that is so inexpensive that most women could get it.
At the same time, the nation’s two largest clinical laboratories, Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp, normally bitter rivals, are joining with French researchers to pool their data to better interpret mutations in the two mainbreast cancer risk genes, known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. Other companies and laboratories are being invited to join the effort, called BRCA Share.
Diverse mammals, including humans, have been found to carry distinct genomes in their cells. What does such genetic chimerism mean for health and disease?
In 1976, researchers from the Lister Institute of Preventive Medicine in London published the puzzling case of a woman who had two different blood types: 93 percent of her red cells were type O, while the remaining 7 percent were type A1, the most common type A subgroup.1 A few years later, Winifred Watkins of the MRC Clinical Research Centre and colleagues came across another blood donor with two distinct red blood cell types, and further investigation led to an even more astonishing finding: a phenotypically normal man, with presumably XY cells in his testes and most of his body, was found to carry XX cells in his skin and other tissues.2
These case studies heralded a new appreciation for the phenomenon of genetic chimerism—when an individual carries two or more genetically distinct cell lines in different parts of her body. Until the advent of techniques for blood typing and karyotyping cells, genetic chimeras where thought to be very rare. They only came to light when the phenotypes associated with the two distinct genomes were so discordant that the resulting individual was clearly exceptional, with patches of distinct skin coloration throughout the body, for example, or hermaphroditic genitals. In reality, genetic chimeras may be quite common, disguised in perfectly normal bodies harboring genetically distinct cell lineages.
While most fictional works portray chimeras as an amalgam of two individuals, the truth is that the individuality of the distinct cell lines is lost as the two combine.
In all likelihood, most chimeras are not even aware of their condition. Boston resident Karen Keegan, for example, would have never discovered her mixed genetic makeup if in 1998, at age 52, she hadn’t needed a kidney transplant. When doctors tested the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) type of her three children to see if any of them could donate a kidney, they were surprised to find that two of the children could not have been hers at all: while all three carried one HLA copy that matched their father’s, only one child carried a second copy that matched Karen’s. Of course, having given birth to these children, she knew they were hers. Sure enough, while Karen had one cell line only in her blood, the doctors eventually found the “missing” HLA type in a second cell line in her skin, hair, bladder, mouth mucosa, and thyroid.3
The reliability rate reported by an Italy-based team in the Journal of Urology comes from the latest of several studies stretching back decades and raises the prospect of canines’ sense of smell helping doctors identify a number of human cancers and infectious diseases.
The two female dogs sniffed urine samples from 900 men, 360 with prostate cancer and 540 without. Both animals were right in well over 90% of cases