As a kid growing up in the 60s and 70s I loved music. I wanted to learn piano, but with 6 people in our household there simply was not the room to invest in one. I then decided to try the guitar as it takes up less room, and...
Over the past few days, I've been shocked to see and hear obvious attempts to downplay Zika's similarities to West Nile virus. And what I discovered sent chills up my spine. It's possible that a seemingly harmless mosquito control method (using the bacterium Wolbachia) could enhance the Zika virus in Culex mosquitoes. And Culex have finally been acknowledged as a vector of Zika (by the WHO). In California and Florida, Culex mosquitoes are everywhere. And it appears that dangerous decisions have been (and are being) made by our public health authorities that we can never undo.
No surprise: money is probably at the root of why the public (and many in the scientific community) are ignoring, omitting, or downplaying the fact that the Zika virus is found in birds. Forty-five years ago, 15 percent of birds studied in Uganda were found to be reservoir hosts of the Zika virus. That percentage would only increase as Zika has spread and mutated around the globe. And Culex are also vectors of the Zika virus (this has been proven by three independent research teams out of Brazil, China, and Canada). Those culpable for the most harmful strain of Zika may be the backers of Wolbachia-infected mosquito releases. The people involved include Bill and Melinda Gates and the following governments: UK Department for International Development, United States Agency for International Development through the Combating Zika and Future Threats Grand Challenge, Australian and Queensland governments, and the Brazilian government. With those deep pockets and power, it's no wonder why crucial studies and reports have magically disappeared from the internet.
Once I researched Wolbachia some more, I realized there has been a dangerous precedent already set in motion in California, Brazil, Columbia, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Australia. Two separate research teams found Culex infected by a specific type of Wolbachia caused a totally unexpected result: an increase in West Nile and malaria infections. Culex already harbor Wolbachia, however, there are numerous strains of this bacteria. Since the WHO has finally admitted that Culex are also a vector of Zika, I felt it was prudent for Florida (and other regions of the world) to be aware of the risks involved with Wolbachia-based mosquito control and to test out whether local Culex - that will eventually acquire it naturally from the Wolbachia-infected Aedes - will become (or are already) a more worrisome vector of the Zika virus.
As a teenager in the 70s, most cameras required film and flashbulbs and developing time.Â But one day my Dad brought home a really cool Polaroid camera that would shoot the picture and instant print and we would all gather around to watch it instantly develop!Â It was much...
Is it morally responsible to insert computerized chips into humans? Whether or not using chips in humans it ethical depends on how one looks at it. There are a lot of questions associated with this issue; the main ones being responsibility and ethics.
In some situations, seeking out old connections on Facebook is totally healthy and a lot of fun, but in other situations it may be detrimental to life and create problems in a current relationship. How to tell?
The carelessness of our public health authorities over the Zika virus has disappointed me immensely this past year. And just when I thought there would be some signs of remorse, WHO's director-general, Dr. Margaret Chan, blamed the vector control strategies of countries in southeast Asia. Meanwhile, she has known since February 2016 that Culex mosquitoes were also a likely Zika vector that require entirely different eradication methods. But even worse: Wolbachia-infected Aedes mosquitoes have been released in various regions of the world for the past six years. And while Wolbachia in Aedes may not be transmitted to humans; Culex mosquitoes are capable of acquiring it and transmitting it. Culex are able to infect humans with filarial worms infected with Wolbachia. And Wolbachia seem to play an inordinate role in diseases. For weeks I pored over studies and found to my utter shock that Culex with Zika and Wolbachia could be responsible for some of the most devastating outcomes for human life.
Basically, we've become so dependent on tech, it can be said we've allowed it to dominate our lives. Overall, we give the commands to technology and computer systems and/or devices simply to get the job done. Or, we use it to make live easier and also to tap into the other advantages it offers.
There is a lot to be afraid of, and we know this because these fears are being fed to us through constant daily news feeds. That being said, perhaps the real question is if whether or not there is truly more to worry about today than there was in days of yesteryear? Or is it just we are more aware?
Who says that a blurred shot doesn't make for a great photo?
Who says money doesn't grow on trees? While you might not find cold hard cash, in Australia, you might find traces of gold in the leaves of eucalyptus trees.
Need answers to questions like why leaves change color in Autumn or why do Bees buzzÉ Read on...
Camping and hiking have changed dramatically in the last few years. If you are an avid outdoorsy type person, but also have an attachment to your electronics then you can have the best of both worlds.