Genetically modified mosquitoes for better health

What is the risk of getting a disease from a genetically modified mozzie? Mosquitoes are responsible for spreading many diseases, such as malaria, What is the risk of getting a disease from a genetically modified mozzie? Mosquitoes are responsible for spreading many diseases, such as malaria, lymphatic filariasis (also known as elephantiasis), and the o’nyong’nyong … Continue reading Genetically modified mosquitoes for better health

Vampire bats choose to social distance

Vampire bats, it seems, embrace what you could think of as social distancing. A new study published in the journal Behavioural Ecology suggests that when they are sick they spend less time near others from their community, which slows how quickly a disease will spread. The research team, led by Ohio State University, US, had … Continue reading Vampire bats choose to social distance

Cosmos Q&A: A forgotten foe returns

Scarlet fever was a feared disease until well into the 20th century. Characterised by a red, sandpapery rash, it typically infected children and caused notable numbers of deaths. After being reduced to isolated cases for decades it re-emerged this century. Cosmos asked University of Queensland (UQ) Professor Mark Walker, about research into the scarlet-fever causing … Continue reading Cosmos Q&A: A forgotten foe returns

The zoonotic diseases closer to home

With genetic analysis suggesting COVID-19 originated in animals before it spread to humans, now is a good time to bear in mind zoonotic diseases are closer to home than people might think, says a UNSW researcher. Whether it’s bin chickens raiding rubbish bins, pigeons flocking to alfresco dining leftovers or cuddles with the family pet, animals … Continue reading The zoonotic diseases closer to home

Habitat destruction could fuel disease risk

Scientists have been sounding progressively louder alarms about the repercussions of human expansion across the planet through intensive agriculture, deforestation and urbanisation, destroying wildlife habitats in the process. These activities don’t just impact biodiversity, ecosystems and livelihoods. They could also help foster the growth of animals that carry diseases known to infect humans, according to … Continue reading Habitat destruction could fuel disease risk

Two stories of two deadly diseases

New studies shine new light on two infamous epidemics – one with possible lessons for our current global crisis. Mathematical modelling of typhus infections in the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II reveals how public health interventions helped eradicate the disease, which was on track to be even more deadly than it turned out to … Continue reading Two stories of two deadly diseases