News & Perspective

Nov 17, 2003

Nov 17, 2003

USDA offers food safety guidelines for consumers

(CIDRAP News) – The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) today released a 15-page set of guidelines for the public on food safety and security.

Titled "Food Safety and Food Security: What Consumers Need to Know," the booklet covers topics ranging from safe cooking temperatures and product recalls to spotting and reporting possible food tampering.

Nov 14, 2003

Nov 14, 2003

Scientists create functioning virus in 2 weeks

(CIDRAP News) – Scientists funded by the US Department of Energy (DOE) created a functioning copy of a virus in the record-breaking time of 2 weeks, DOE officials announced yesterday.

The virus is a phage—a type that infects bacteria—and is harmless to humans, officials said. It was created as part of a research program to develop microbes that can help solve energy and environmental problems.

Nov 14, 2003

Nov 14, 2003

Study confirms role of food handling in spread of noroviruses

(CIDRAP News) – A study from the Netherlands confirms that food-handling practices play an important role in the spread of noroviruses (Norwalk viruses), which have been blamed for many outbreaks of intestinal illness on cruise ships and in institutions in recent years.

Nov 13, 2003

Nov 13, 2003

Myocarditis in DoD smallpox vaccinees, though still rare, shows increase

(CIDRAP News) – Recent figures from the US Department of Defense (DoD) indicate a higher rate of myopericarditis (heart inflammation) cases among military personnel following smallpox vaccination than previously reported, though the complication remains relatively rare.

Nov 11, 2003

Nov 11, 2003

USDA will issue temporary permits to handle 'select agents'

(CIDRAP News) – The federal government has moved to allow individuals and groups to continue working with certain hazardous biological agents beyond the Nov 12 deadline for complying with new registration rules while the government completes background checks on those groups.

Nov 10, 2003

Nov 10, 2003

DC anthrax alert canceled after follow-up tests

(CIDRAP News) – The US Postal Service (USPS) reopened post offices in the Washington, DC, area last week after further tests dismissed a preliminary finding of anthrax at a Navy mail-handling facility in Washington.

Nov 10, 2003

Senate wants to keep downed cattle out of food supply

(CIDRAP News) – In an effort to ensure that sick cattle are kept out of the food supply, the Senate last week approved a measure to bar the Department of Agriculture (USDA) from approving the use of "downed" animals for human consumption.

Nov 07, 2003

Nov 07, 2003

Acambis launches clinical trial of West Nile vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – The British biotechnology company Acambis announced yesterday that it has launched the first clinical trial of its vaccine for West Nile virus, called ChimeriVax-West Nile.

The phase 1 trial will involve 60 adult volunteers in Lenexa, Kan., the company said in a news release. The volunteers will receive one of three doses of the West Nile vaccine or a licensed yellow fever vaccine that is being used as a control.

Nov 07, 2003

Anthrax scare prompts post office closings in DC area

(CIDRAP News) – The US Postal Service (USPS) closed 11 post offices and facilities in the Washington, DC, area yesterday after routine air sampling indicated possible anthrax at a mail handling facility at the Anacostia Naval Station in Washington.

"Out of an abundance of caution, the Postal Service has decided to close and test facilities for biohazard contamination," USPS spokesman Azeezaly Jaffer said in a statement yesterday evening.

Nov 06, 2003

Nov 06, 2003

Scientists research antidotes to super mousepox virus

(CIDRAP News) – A team of researchers in St. Louis has retooled a mousepox virus so it can defeat a vaccine that normally protects mice—but has also found ways to beat the customized virus, according to the group's leader.

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