19 – 26 February 2016

Laura Rodrigues is quoted by Reuters about the ongoing work to prove a link between the Zika virus and congenital birth defect microcephaly, including her own research in Brazil: “We will follow them [pregnant women thought to be infected with Zika] to establish what proportion will have a miscarriage or a stillbirth, and what proportion have a baby with microcephaly or other malformations. That will tell us how common microcephaly really is and how it is affected by the trimester in which the mother becomes infected.” This leads to articles in multiple outlets including the Daily Mail, Channel News Asia and The Star (Malaysia).

Laura Rodrigues also speaks to Der Spiegel (£), in a feature about the ongoing outbreak of Zika Virus in the Americas, and global research currently being undertaken to prove a link between the virus and microcephaly.

Jimmy Whitworth speaks to BBC News about the potential long term effects of Ebola, after findings from the US National Institutes of Health indicate that survivors developed weakness, memory loss and depressive symptoms in the six months after being discharged from an Ebola unit: “This is a very important study. There is still much to learn about Ebola, including what problems are faced by those who were infected but survived. The findings show high levels of mental and neurological problems in the survivors and from the clinical neurological findings these appear to be very real problems.” He is also quoted in SciDev.net.

Jimmy Whitworth also speaks to Quartz about the WHO response to the Zika outbreak: “The global response to Zika has been much better than it was to Ebola. This is in part because of WHO’s reforms.”

Jo Lines is quoted in The Guardian Global Development Network, in a “Best Bits” from a recent Live Q&A on Zika virus: “It is misleading to describe Zika as yet another outbreak to claim for global warming.”

Hannah Kuper writes for SciDev.net about the support currently needed for babies born with congenital birth defect microcephaly, and their families: “What are the implications for the thousands of babies born with microcephaly? This is barely considered within the WHO response: disability is mentioned just twice.”

Michel Coleman features in BBC Radio 4‘s Cancer Moonshot, a programme about Obama’s “Moonshot” campaign to find cures for cancer, and the terminology around similar ambitious campaigns, including President Nixon’s War on Cancer (from 09m17s): “Trying to cure cancer with the state of knowledge as it was in 1971 was roughly equivalent to trying to put a man on the moon without knowing Newton’s law of gravity – a point made by a very senior cancer physician at the time.”

David Heymann is mentioned in New York Times as chairman of the WHO emergency committee on Zika virus, in an article about the time needed to definitively prove the link between Zika virus and congenital microcephaly.

Punam Mangtani is quoted in Dagbladet Information (Denmark), in an article about a global shortage of the BCG vaccine following ceased production by Denmark’s Statens Serum Institut: “Global shortage of BCG vaccine can lead to increased mortality in babies and young children in countries with widespread tuberculosis.” Punam is also quoted in a Danish Trade Union outlet, HK Denmark.

Magdalena Harris appears on BBC Newsnight in a news feature about new, hugely expensive, drugs for Hepatitis C and the difficulty of obtaining treatment in the UK.

David Conway is quoted in Deutschlandfunk (Germany), in an article about early stages of research from the University of California and Imperial college London into developing genetically modified mosquitoes: “Now I’m optimistic that this could actually work.”

Martin McKee speaks to BMJ about the danger to UK Science and healthcare if we were to leave the EU: “The UK currently engages deeply with the European institutions on innumerable initiatives, and a vote to leave would trigger an extremely complex programme of renegotiations, potentially lasting for a decade or more, on terms that Brexit proponents have been unable to specify.”

Landon Kuester joins the discussion on Resonance FM’s Very Loose Women, discussing his studies into prisoner health in the US: “Prison is the only place in the US where you have a constitutional right to healthcare… You do have basic healthcare but it’s up to the discretion of the nurse or doctor.”

Kate Mandeville speaks to PolitiFact about the shortage of doctors in Malawi: “The 300 figure has the most shock value, but scaling up the number of doctors alone is unlikely to have much impact on population health outcomes.”

Alison Grant speaks to MedPage Today about her research in South Africa showing that early treatment of suspected tuberculosis patients failed to reduce mortality among individuals coinfected with HIV: “Just increasing the number of people treated for TB was not enough to make a difference in mortality. HIV testing and antiretroviral initiation are needed earlier, before there is advanced disease.”

Anthony Harries mentioned in Times LIVE (South Africa) in an article about tuberculosis treatment in South Africa, and the risk of increasing cases of TB related to rocketing levels of diabetes in the country.

John Edmunds is in The Express as he receives an OBE for his work helping to combat the recent Ebola virus outbreak. He is also mentioned in Belfast Telegraph, Herald Scotland and Irish Independent.

The School is mentioned in Fast Coexist in an article about the findings of the recently ended Global Trachoma Mapping Project, which identified 100 million people at risk of blinding trachoma.

Alan Dangour’s previous research on organic food is mentioned in a Huffington Post article on whether there are nutritional benefits of organic vs conventional food, and the importance of independent research into this issue.

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