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Weekly digest: C. diff trends visualized, tropical diseases in the US, and Dr. Suess on malaria

Weekly digest: C. diff trends visualized, tropical diseases in the US, and Dr. Suess on malaria

A roundup of news on drug resistance and other topics in global health.

As a follow-up to the USA Today story on rising Clostridium difficile (C. diff) rates, CDDEP’s visualization series examines correlations between antibiotic prescribing and C. diff mortality. View an interactive map that tracks antibiotic prescribing alongside C. diff mortality from 2000-2009 here.

An op-ed in the New York Times explores the connection between poverty and tropical diseases in the US (diseases that were thought to be confined to developing countries), and discusses possible solutions to combat these diseases. [NYTimes]

An article published by the American Physical Society discusses antibiotic resistance in terms of drug gradients and concludes that drug gradients might provide an evolutionary boost for drug resistance. [APS]

In its report on tattoo-associated skin infections, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finds that tattoo ink was responsible for 14 such infections in New York last year. [NPR]

Two new studies find an association between antibiotic use and obesity. [Washington Post]

In a study of pathogen transmission from humans to apes published in the American Journal of Primatology, 58% of the chimpanzees located in two sanctuaries in Africa were found to be infected with drug-resistant Staphlyococcus aureus, with 10% of the staph cases showing multi-drug resistance. [Futurity]

The California Department of Public Health has released reports for the year 2011 on bloodstream infections, MRSA and VRE, surgical site infections, and has updated and expanded an interactive map of healthcare-associated infections. [Infection Control Today]

As West Nile virus infections spread across the country, the New York Times has published an interview with Dr. Erin Staples from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discussing the disease and the reasons for the current outbreak. [NYTimes]

A column in Scientific American discusses the problems associated with counterfeit drugs, approaches to detect counterfeiting, and ways to deal with this problem. [Scientific American]

Research published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, discusses the use of whole-genome sequencing to track the origins and route of carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae as it spread across a hospital, infecting seventeen patients and killing six. [NYTimes]

NPR finds illustrations from Dr. Seuss s days as a captain in the U.S. Army, including comics that warned soldiers about the threat of malaria. [NPR]


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