Tag Archives: epidemiology

Epidemiology: New model combines multiple genomic data

Data about DNA differences, gene expression, or methylation can each tell epidemiologists something about the link between genomics and disease. A new statistical model that can integrate all those sources provides a markedly improved analysis, according to two new papers.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — The difference between merely throwing around buzzwords like “personalized medicine” and “big data” and delivering on their medical promise is in the details of developing methods for analyzing and interpreting genomic data. In a pair of new papers, Brown University epidemiologist Yen-Tsung Huang and colleagues show how integrating different kinds of genomic data could improve studies of the association between genes and disease. (more…)

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Made in IBM Labs: Scientists Turn Data into Disease Detective to Predict Dengue Fever and Malaria Outbreaks

IBM teams up with Johns Hopkins University and UC San Francisco to help public health officials model, predict and track the possible spread of infectious diseases

SAN JOSE, Calif., – 30 Sep 2013: Scientists from IBM are collaborating with Johns Hopkins University and University of California, San Francisco to combat illness and infectious diseases in real-time with smarter data tools for public health. The focus is to help contain global outbreaks of dengue fever and malaria by applying the latest analytic models, computing technology and mathematical skills on an open-source framework.

Vector-borne diseases, like malaria and dengue fever, are infections transmitted to humans and other animals by blood-feeding insects, such as mosquitoes, ticks and fleas. (more…)

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Initial positive results reported on vaccine to treat genital herpes

Initial, positive results have been reported for a therapeutic vaccine candidate for treating patients with genital herpes. This first-in-class, investigational, protein subunit vaccine, GEN-003, is under development by Genocea Biosciences Inc.

Dr. Anna Wald, University of Washington professor of medicine and laboratory medicine in the School of Medicine and professor of epidemiology in the School of Public Health, is among those leading clinical studies of GEN-003. The trials are also taking place at six other centers in the United States. (more…)

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Researchers shed light on MERS Coronavirus transmission

Epidemiology and gene sequencing technologies have been used by researchers in the UK, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the US and Canada to show that the novel Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus can spread between people in healthcare settings. The work is published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The scientists, from the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Health, UCL, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, University of Toronto, University of Colorado and Johns Hopkins University, rapidly investigated and defined the epidemiology, transmission dynamics and genetic composition of the MERS-CoV cluster of 22 cases of healthcare-acquired MERS coronavirus infections from a recent outbreak in Al-Hasa, Eastern Province, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. (more…)

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Samoan Obesity Epidemic Starts at Birth

Born slightly heavy on average, a sample of hundreds of infants in American Samoa continued to gain weight quickly after birth, achieving high rates of obesity within 15 months. Breastfeeding slowed weight gain in boys. Findings may presage infant obesity in other populations where obesity is increasing population wide.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — As some Pacific island cultures have “westernized” over the last several decades, among the changes has been a dramatic increase in obesity. Researchers don’t understand all the reasons why, but even a decade ago in American Samoa 59 percent of men and 71 percent of women were obese. A new Brown University study finds that the Samoan epidemic of obesity may start with rapid weight gain in early infancy. (more…)

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Older Lesbians, Gays Have Higher Rates of Chronic Disease, Mental Distress, Isolation

*California’s aging LGB population is set to double in next 20 years*

Members of California’s aging lesbian, gay and bisexual population are more likely to suffer from certain chronic conditions, even as they wrestle with the challenges of living alone in far higher numbers than the heterosexual population, according to new policy brief from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. 

Half of all gay and bisexual adult men in California between the ages of 50 and 70 are living alone, compared with 13.4 percent of heterosexual men in the same age group. And although older California lesbians and bisexual women are more likely to live with a partner or a family member than their male counterparts, more than one in four live alone, compared with one in five heterosexual women.  (more…)

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When Video Games Get Problematic so Do Smoking, Drug Use and Aggression

A new study on gaming and health in adolescents, conducted by researchers at Yale School of Medicine, found some significant gender differences linked to gaming as well as important health risks associated with problematic gaming. Published yesterday in the journal Pediatrics, the study is among the first and largest to examine possible health links to gaming and problematic gaming in a community sample of adolescents.

Rani Desai, associate professor of psychiatry and epidemiology and public health at Yale, and colleagues anonymously surveyed 4,028 adolescents about their gaming, problems associated with gaming and other health behaviors. They found that 51.2% of the teens played video games (76.3% of boys and 29.2% of girls). The study not only revealed that, overall, there were no negative health consequences of gaming in boys, but that gaming was linked to lower odds of smoking regularly. Among girls, however, gaming was associated with getting into serious fights and carrying a weapon to school. (more…)

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