News & Perspective

Nov 14, 2008

Nov 14, 2008

Firm says weakened smallpox vaccine has good safety profile

(CIDRAP News) – Bavarian Nordic, a Danish pharmaceutical company, announced recently that a smallpox vaccine that it is developing for people with weakened immune systems showed promising safety results in a phase 2 clinical trial involving volunteers with HIV infections.

Oct 30, 2008

Oct 30, 2008

University of Minnesota breaks flu-shot world record

(CIDRAP News) – The University of Minnesota on Oct 28 blew past the single-day Guinness world record for administering seasonal flu vaccine, delivering 11,538 shots at four campus locations.

Oct 23, 2008

Oct 23, 2008

ACIP opens door to anthrax shots for first responders

(CIDRAP News) – The federal Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has opened the door to voluntary anthrax vaccination for first responders, revising an 8-year-old recommendation against that step.

Oct 22, 2008

Oct 22, 2008

GAO says tighter security needed at two BSL-4 labs

(CIDRAP News) – Two of the nation's five biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) labs lack outer-ring security controls to protect against a terrorist attack or theft of some of the world's most dangerous pathogens, such as the Ebola and smallpox viruses, according to a new report from the Governmental Accountability Office (GAO).

Sep 05, 2008

Sep 05, 2008

Firm wins $55 million contract for smallpox drug

(CIDRAP News) – SIGA Technologies Inc. announced this week that it has been awarded a $55 million federal contract to develop a new formulation of its experimental smallpox drug, called ST-246, and carry out related efforts.

The company, based in New York City, said it had previously received a $16.5 million contract to develop the drug, described as "a potent, non-toxic inhibitor of orthopoxviruses."

Aug 15, 2008

Aug 15, 2008

FBI conclusions in anthrax probe meet skepticism

(CIDRAP News) – The Federal Bureau of Investigation's (FBI's) recently revealed conclusion that the late anthrax researcher Dr. Bruce Ivins committed the anthrax letter attacks of 2001 has been greeted with skepticism by many in the scientific community.

Jul 24, 2008

Jul 24, 2008

BioWatch demands on state labs called burdensome

(CIDRAP News) – The president of the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) complained to Congress last week that the federal program that monitors the air for dangerous pathogens in major cities is a heavy burden on state and local laboratories.

Jul 21, 2008

Jul 21, 2008

More efforts look outside the box for outbreak signals

(CIDRAP News) – In the history of infectious diseases, coincidence plays an extraordinary role. In 1706, Cotton Mather purchased a slave named Onesimus who happened to come from a tribe that practiced variolation, and so smallpox prevention was introduced to North America.

Jun 18, 2008

Jun 18, 2008

Coalition declares 'final push' to end polio

(CIDRAP News) – The international coalition of health agencies dedicated to ending polio yesterday declared a "final push" toward the long-delayed goal of eradicating the disease. But its members coupled the announcement with a plea for millions of dollars in donations to fill shortfalls, and with an admission that the 20-year-old campaign continues to face stubborn challenges.

Jun 10, 2008

Jun 10, 2008

Tracing air travelers at risk for disease still tough

(CIDRAP News) – Five years after the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) epidemic spread around the globe via air travel, significant barriers still stand in the way of tracking down and notifying airline passengers who may have been exposed to an infectious disease.

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