RIYADH/LONDON (Reuters) – When Saudi Arabia announced last week it had found 113 more cases of the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), it didn’t just force a rethink of the threat the virus poses, it exposed institutional failings.
Saudi health sources and international virologists said poor communication and a lack of accountability in government departments, inadequate state oversight and a failure to learn from past mistakes have all hindered Saudi Arabia’s battle against the SARS-like virus.
RIYADH/LONDON, June 12 (Reuters) – When Saudi Arabia
announced last week it had found 113 more cases of the deadly
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), it didn’t just force a
rethink of the threat the virus poses, it exposed institutional
Saudi health sources and international virologists said poor
communication and a lack of accountability in government
departments, inadequate state oversight and a failure to learn
from past mistakes have all hindered Saudi Arabia’s battle
against the SARS-like virus.
LONDON (Reuters) – Scientists have found a way of genetically modifying mosquitoes to produce sperm that only creates males, offering a potential fresh approach to fighting and eventually eradicating malaria.
Researchers from Imperial College London tested a genetic method that distorts the sex ratio of Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes, the main transmitters of the malaria parasite, so that the female mosquitoes that bite and pass the disease to humans are no longer produced.
LONDON (Reuters) – Lapses in hospital infection control measures exacerbated an outbreak of a deadly new viral disease which has infected more than 60 people and killed at least 10 in the United Arab Emirates, health investigators said on Friday.
Reporting the findings of a five-day mission to the UAE, experts from the World Health Organisation said, however, that they found no evidence of sustained human-to-human transmission of new Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).
LONDON, June 5 (Reuters) – A dramatic upward revision in the
number of people killed by the MERS virus in Saudi Arabia may
signal a fresh approach from Riyadh, but also raises new
questions about how the two-year-old outbreak has been handled.
Experts in global health and infectious diseases say
transparency with data is critical to learning more about the
virus, which until two years ago had never been seen in humans
but has now killed more than 300 people worldwide.
LONDON (Reuters) – A Saudi man who became infected with and died of the new Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus contracted the disease from a camel in his own herd which was also sick, scientists said on Wednesday.
In a study which reinforces the case against camels as the prime suspects for transmitting the deadly virus from the animal world into people, researchers said that in this case it was highly likely the animal’s nasal secretions were to blame.
RIYADH/LONDON (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia has sacked Deputy Health Minister Ziad Memish who has been criticized by some international scientists over his handling of the deadly MERS virus that has infected 575 people in the kingdom and spread around the world.
Memish was a key figure in Saudi Arabia’s efforts to contain the spread of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), a virus that causes coughing, fever and sometimes fatal pneumonia.
LONDON, June 3 (Reuters) – A British expert scientific panel
gave its backing on Tuesday to potential new 3-way fertility
treatments that would for the first time allow genetically
modified embryos to be implanted into women.
The “three-parent” IVF techniques are designed to help
families with particular genetic faults who want to avoid
passing on incurable diseases to their children. They could be
available for patients in two years, the scientists told
reporters at a briefing in London.
LONDON (Reuters) – Superbugs resistant to drugs pose a serious worldwide threat and demand a response on the same scale as efforts to combat climate change, infectious disease specialists said on Thursday.
Warning that a world without effective antibiotics would be “deadly”, with routine surgery, treatments for cancer and diabetes and organ transplants becoming impossible, the experts said the international response had been far too weak.
LONDON (Reuters) – In a north London laboratory on a Saturday in September 2012, an email arrived from a team of virologists in the Netherlands that spooked even some of the world’s most seasoned virus handlers.
It contained details of a mysterious viral pathogen that had been found in two patients – a Qatari in intensive care in Britain, and a Saudi who died in a Jeddah hospital of pneumonia and renal failure.