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Monday, February 17, 2014

2/17/14 Health News : E. COLI DEATH LEADS FOOD SAFETY AWAKENING - Breath Test Detects Lung Cancer- Staph hijacks immune System

Ruby Trautz, a retired registered nurse from Bellevue, NE, was the first fatality in the 2006 E. coli O157:H7 outbreak linked to Dole bagged baby spinach produced in the Salinas Valley of California. Trautz, 81, died Aug. 31, 2006, after several days in the hospital She was one of four people who passed away after...Continue Reading

Breath Test May Detect Lung Cancer

Lung cancer can be a silent killer, often showing no symptoms until it's too late. But University of Louisville scientists have discovered a simple test that may someday help diagnose the deadly disease earlier — by analyzing exhaled breath. The researchers made their findings while examining patients with suspicious lung lesions and testing their breath using a specially designed microchip. The probability of cancer was 95% for patients with elevated levels of three or four specific compounds. The chip captures specific compounds in the breath, which are then analyzed with a mass spectrometer, an instrument that measures the mass of a given molecule. Researchers matched their findings with pathology and clinical results from each patient. Two of the four compounds they found in lung-cancer patients were previously known to be associated with the disease, but Fu discovered .Continue Reading

Probe Detects Staph Infection Faster, More Cheaply
Now, researchers from the University of Iowa have developed an ingenious noninvasive chemical probe that can detect the presence of a common species of staph in less than an hour. Speaking about their study, published in the journal Nature Medicine, first author and post-doctoral researcher Frank Hernandez says: "Every year in the US half a million people become infected by S. aureus bacteria, and 20,000 of those who become infected die. We believe that we are significantly improving the actual methods for detecting bacteria with a simple approach, which we expect to be cheap, fast and reliable." The idea of the chemical probe is not new, but what is new is that this team has produced one that lasts longer and identifies staph quickly, as Dr. Hernandez explains: "We designed a tracking system that specifically identifies bacterial body localization in less than one hour." .Continue Reading

Immune system turned against itself by Staphylococcus aureus bacteria
Around 20 percent of all humans are persistently colonized with Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, a leading cause of skin infections and one of the major sources of hospital-acquired infections, including the antibiotic-resistant strain MRSA.

University of Chicago scientists have recently discovered one of the keys to the immense success of S. aureus - the ability to hijack a primary human immune defense mechanism and use it to destroy white blood cells. Continue Reading

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