UC Denver–Study shows gap between public health and transportation policy
A new study from the University of Colorado Denvershows public health issues are often ignored in many transportation projects, especially when major roads are built through lower-income neighborhoods.Air pollution, crime and numerous traffic hazards, the study said, point to a serious and persistent gap between public health and planning. “The public health effects of heavy traffic are broad,” said study author Carolyn McAndrews, PhD, assistant professor at the CU Denver College of Architecture and Planning, one of the largest schools of its kind in the U.S.
CNN– Mad cow disease-related death confirmed in Texas
Mad cow disease has caused a fourth death in the United States, health officials say. Lab tests have confirmed that a patient in Texas who recently died had Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease. Variant CJD is a fatal brain disorder linked to eating beef from cattle with mad cow disease, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a press release. Variant CJD was first identified in the United Kingdom in 1996, according to the CDC. Worldwide more than 220 cases have been reported, the majority in Europe. CDC officials said this is only the fourth case to be reported in the United States, and that each U.S. infection is believed to have happened while the patient was traveling abroad.
BBC–Sleep’s memory role discovered
The team in China and the US used advanced microscopy to witness new connections between brain cells – synapses – forming during sleep. Their study, published in the journal Science, showed even intense training could not make up for lost sleep. Experts said it was an elegant and significant study, which uncovered the mechanisms of memory. It is well known that sleep plays an important role in memory and learning. But what actually happens inside the brain has been a source of considerable debate.
NBC News–Dirty Baby, Healthy Baby? Early Filth May Reduce Allergies
Want a healthy baby? You may want to roll her around in dirt. For decades, parents have shielded infants from bacteria and other possible triggers for illness, allergies and asthma. But a surprising new study suggests that exposure to cat dander, a wide variety of household bacteria — and even rodent and roach allergens — may help protect infants against future allergies and wheezing. Interestingly, contact with bacteria and dander after age 1 was not protective — it actually increased the risk.
Enterprise News–House agrees to bill aimed at keeping mosquito population down
Municipal public works employees and seasonal workers would be given back the authority to drop non-toxic pesticide pellets into storm drains in an effort to prevent an outbreak of mosquito-borne diseases, under a bill that has cleared the Massachusetts House. Cases of West Nile virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) surged in the last few years, and in 2012 two Massachusetts residents’ deaths were attributed to the mosquito-borne diseases. State public health officials believe this year could bring another high-risk season.