Breast Milk Sugars Give Infants a Protective Coat

three researchers at the University of California, Davis — Bruce German, Carlito Lebrilla and David Mills. They and colleagues have found that a particular strain of bacterium, a subspecies of Bifidobacterium longum, possesses a special suite of genes that enable it to thrive on the indigestible component of milk.

This subspecies is commonly found in the feces of breast-fed infants. It coats the lining of the infant’s intestine, protecting it from noxious bacteria.

Infants presumably acquire the special strain of bifido from their mothers, but strangely, it has not yet been detected in adults. “We’re all wondering where it hides out,” Dr. Mills said.

via Breast Milk Sugars Give Infants a Protective Coat – NYTimes.com.

via Breast Milk Sugars Give Infants a Protective Coat – NYTimes.com.

Using the USB Microscope-Sample Images and Microscopy Project

Gentlemen, here are some links and sample projects for the microscope.
My model is called the USB Shot and comes with a 50x lense but no stand.

Drivers to download, etc., Visit: http://www.goalfinder.com/product.asp?productid=26
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Sample Upper Elementary/Middle School Project:

Microscope and Cell Division

Sample Early Elementary Project–or Intro to Microscope Project for any age.

  • Day 1: teacher intros microscope… theory and practice–demonstrates what it can do
  • Day 2: kids work in small groups to find, focus, and photograph objects (one plant specimen: e.g., flowers or pepper; one mineral specimen, e.g. salt, or metal pins ) that they brought in…’ Each student chooses their favorite shot.
  • Day 3: teacher shows slide show with every student’s best shot-labeled, etc.  Passes out individual shots for students to take home, puts pages with students’ best shots up on bulletin board in each grades homeroom.

Sample Still Photos–first grade project

Continue reading

Kaiser Tree – Tick Borne Diseases

Tick-born Diseases

Ticks latch onto humans and animals, imbed their mouths into their hosts’ skin, and suck their blood. This makes these parasites perfect vectors for spreading disease.

In the United States ticks spread numerous diseases in humans including:
potentially deadly Lyme Disease, Babesiosis, Tick Typhus,Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever, Ehrlichiosis, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Tick Born Encephalitis (TBE), Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness (STARI), Tick-Borne Relapsing Fever
, Anaplasmosis, Ehrlichiosis
/Human /Granulocytic Ehrlichia (HGE).

COMMON DISEASE SYMPTOMS: In rare cases, none of the symptoms noted below may be observed until after permanent neurological or other damage has been inflected on tick bite victims:

  • Lyme: Bulls-eye rash, fever/chills/joint pain, fatigue, swollen joints/lymph nodes, heart palpitation, sleep disruption, neuropathy, Bell’s Palsy. Can be fatal

  • Babesiosis: Headache, fever, fatigue, weakness, appetite loss, muscle pain, sweats, confusion.
    If untreated, up to 5% die

  • HGE: Rash is uncommon, fever/chills/shaking, muscle/joint pain, headache, malaise, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, confusion. Can be fatal

  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever: Spotty rash
    5-10 days after infection. Fatal in 10% of cases

  • TBE: Fever, dementia, 30% never recover,1% die

via Kaiser Tree – Tick Borne Diseases.

Tick Sampling Protocol, Rhode Island

“Rhode Island consistently has the second highest rate of Lyme disease nationally, and the numbers have tripled in the last 15 years,” Kennedy said.

Sampling done near Beavertail State Park showed the tick count in that area jumped 842 percent since last year. A 50-percent increase in tick numbers was found at a creek on North Main Road.

A standardized protocol for tick sampling used by the URI research team is to drag white flannel cloths over the ground in wooded sites, according to Mather. Ticks grab the cloth, hoping to find a warm, blood meal. The researchers count the critters every 30 seconds for a total of 45-minutes at each location. “We collect thousands of ticks each year, and this surveillance effort has provided us with very reliable data regarding changes in tick encounter risk,” Mather explained.

via Tick Sampling Protocol, Rhode Island.

Medical Timeline, Epidemics 1904-1908

Public Health.United States.
==Mar.— > Typhoid carrier ‘Typhoid Mary’ Mallon is apprehended in New York, after a wild struggle

Epidemic.Public Health.United States.
==Aug.01 to Apr.1909 > Renewed plague outbreak in San Francisco – the effective public health response limits the impact of the disease

Epidemic.Arabia.
==late.1907 to 1908 > A severe cholera outbreak strikes Hejaz in Arabia, killing 25,000 – sporadic outbreaks to 1912

Epidemic.Russia.
==1907 > A cholera epidemic sweeps the Volga basin

Public Health.Siam.
==1907 > Improvements in the Bangkok water supply ends the threat of cholera

Epidemic.India.
==1907 > Nearly two million Indians die of plague in 1907 alone

Epidemic.Tunisia.
==1907 > The plague pandemic enters Tunisia

Epidemic.West Africa.
==1907 > Sleeping sickness has killed 35% of the population of the island of Príncipe, off the coast of Gabon, since 1902

Epidemic.East Africa.
==1907-1920 > British authorities evacuate a million people from the shores of Lake Victoria in response to the regional sleeping sickness epidemic

via Medical Timeline, 1904-1908.

Mothers fight Lyme disease- Other Tick Disease Articles

Instead of packing their children into SUVs and heading for a field, they take long drives upstate to watch their sons or daughters receive intravenous drug treatments, attend meetings with teachers, organize informational forums and work with state and local health officials in an effort to make sure the experiences they have had are not repeated.

Some do this while they are ill themselves.”What’s brought most of us here is we are mothers with children who are affected, and we can’t watch the suffering anymore,” said Siciliano, co-president of the group.

Along with Siciliano, every woman involved either has been infected or affected by Lyme disease. Their stories include accounts of children afflicted with fatigue, depression, joint aches, memory loss and blurred vision – common symptoms of Lyme disease.

via Mothers fight Lyme disease,

But the blood tests for the disease are no more than 40 percent accurate, health officials have said.

LymeBlog – BETH’S QUEST: Family crusades against Lyme disease

She was a history teacher at South Kingstown High School and was on a teaching retreat on Nantucket when a tick bit her in 1993. A colleague noticed the telltale red bull’s eye rash on Coen’s neck as they drove home.

Coen saw a doctor who prescribed an oral antibiotic. She was fine for a year or two, but then began the chronic sinus infections, migraine headaches, night sweats and muscle spasms.”

What it actually was was the Lyme disease, and she’d have swelling and muscle spasms in the sinus region,” Yarrow said.

One spasm was so severe it broke Coen’s jaw, her father said. Other spasms wracked her body so violently that her ribs were twisted out of alignment, Yarrow said.

via LymeBlog – BETH’S QUEST: Family crusades against Lyme disease.

Rita Colwell-role of the environment and climate in cholera outbreaks

This week microbiologist Rita Colwell received the Stockholm Water Prize.  Dr. Colwell was recognized for her “numerous seminal contributions towards solving the world’s water and water-related public health problems.”I interviewed Dr. Colwell at the 2008 meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science .

Q: What’s the most important thing you want people today to know about the environment and infectious diseases?

Rita Colwell: Infectious diseases are closely related to the environment. In other words, it’s important for us to understand seasonality, climate, and the drivers for infectious disease, and the fact that the ecology of the environment plays a very significant role in infectious disease outbreaks and their persistent patterns.

Q: Tell us more about this connection between infectious disease and the environment.

Rita Colwell: Let me give you an example. Cholera is a devastating disease in the developing world. It was a massive epidemic disease in the United States, but that was pre-1900, before water treatment and good sanitation was introduced to the country. The organism is resident on plankton, marine zooplankton –  the small, microscopic animals of the sea. The organism is a marine bacterium, but yet it can also live in fresh water associated with plankton.

via Interview with Rita Colwell, winner of the 2010 Stockholm Water Prize | Water | EarthSky.