Coronavirus linked to bats, Malaria drugs, “Me” Generation

It’s emerged that a fourth person has contracted a novel virus which causes serious respiratory problems – like those seen in Sars. The coronavirus – which is identical to one found in bats - has already killed one man in Saudi Arabia. Other coronaviruses cause mild colds in humans. Ron Fouchier, Professor of Molecular Virology at Erasmus Medical Centre in the Netherlands has been analysing one of the cases.

Is it safe to allow shopkeepers to sell malaria treatments to people with fevers? The Global Fund – which invests millions in preventing and combatting the disease – wants to encourage more private sector involvement in getting malaria treatments to the people who need them. The use of impregnated bed nets has helped to save more than a million lives over the last ten years. Some organisations such as Oxfam have serious concerns about using unqualified shopkeepers to help distribute the drugs – when there is mounting evidence to show that trained community health workers can make a difference. But Barry Bloom, who’s Professor of Public Health at Harvard University and Chairs the Affordable Medicines Facility for Malaria at the Global Fund says that people are voting with their feet and not using clinics.

Is the United States facing an epidemic of narcissism? A psychologist who’s been researching how personality is changing across the generations has coined the term Generation Me to reflect this trend. Professor Jean Twenge from San Diego State University in California captured the changing attitudes of students from data collected as far back as the 1960s. She says our culture used to encourage modesty and humility – but that now self-confidence is seen as the key to success.

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18 minutes

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Thu 22 Nov 2012 11:32 GMT

Zika: a new pandemic?

Zika virus emerggency talks

The explosive spread and impact of the mosquito-borne virus.