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How do Houseflies Spread Diseases?

How do Houseflies Spread Diseases?

The housefly (musca domestica) is one of the most common of all insects. It is a major health hazard, particularly in parts of the world where sanitary conditions are poor. The housefly has a dull gray, bristled body that is about 7 mm in length. It has large reddish compound eyes. Its mouth cannot bite but consists of a spongy pad. It has a peculiar system of feeding itself. At first it releases saliva and digestive juices over food and then sponges up the resulting solution....

Who discovered Vaccination?

“Mom, I have a stomach ache and I am feeling sick!” Try this out at home and the quick response is bound to be, “Don’t worry, we will take you to the Doctor!” More often than not, if the ache is because you haven’t done your homework, the mere mention of the word ‘doctor’ cures you. Of course, if the problem is genuine no one will know the cure better than a doctor. Edward Jenner was an English physician who was the pioneer of smallpox vaccine — the world’s first vaccine....

What is Mad Cow Disease?

What is Mad Cow Disease?

In 1996, doctors detected 10 cases of a rare and fatal human brain disease in Britain and they diagnosed that it was probably due to eating beef from animals with “mad cow disease”. Scientifically, this cow disease was termed bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE while the disease affecting humans was termed Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). The disease caused panic in Europe both among people eating beef and the farmers who were selling it. The European Union, which is the administrative body and includes all countries in Europe, responded immediately by banning imports of British beef....

Vanishing Vulture

Vanishing Vulture

It’s the bird most commonly associated with death. Once a common sight in South Asia, the vulture, or nature’s scavenger, is one of the 78 species in India that is dying out. Faced with a mysterious virus and pesticide poisoning, the population of vultures today is said to be just 5 per cent of what it was (about 20 years ago) in the 1980s. A couple of years ago, the vultures of Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur numbered 2000....

Rat Menace

Rat Menace

August 12: About 26 people in Mumbai and nearby Thane died recently due to a strange fever. Initially the doctors in Mumbai were unsure which disease had afflicted these people, because no tests were conducted to find out the nature of the fever. Most patients had avoided getting the test done because it cost a lot of money (Rs. 750) and they did not see why they should spend so much money for what appeared to be just an ordinary fever....

What is Leukaemia?

What is Leukaemia?

Some 15 years back when I was still in school, our class teacher, Mrs. Khurana, would remain absent from school and class almost every other day. We kids were very happy without realising and neither did we bother to find out the reason for her absence. It was only later that our principal informed us that Mrs. Khurana’s only son was suffering from leukaemia (wrongly called blood cancer). I remember later that Mrs. Khurana took her son to abroad where he underwent a bone marrow transplant....

What is Asthma?

What is Asthma?

Asthma is one of the most common diseases affecting the lungs. A serious disease, it affects all races and both sexes equally. This disease affects millions. Many of us recognize asthma symptoms like wheezing, chest tightness and gasping for breath. However, few of us know what is going on inside the body of a person with asthma. When we breathe, we inhale oxygen through the nose and mouth. The air passes down the trachea or windpipe through the two bronchi that branch off into the millions of tiny airways that make up the lungs....

Flightless Mosquitoes the Solution to Dengue Fever?

Where: Oxford, United Kingdom February 27, 2010 :Scientists have come up with a novel method to tackle the menace of dengue fever. They propose to breed mosquitoes that cant fly. The plan is to genetically alter the male of the species. These males will father a new generation of female mosquitoes with limited wing growth. The females will continue to transmit these genes, but only to female offspring. The male offspring will remain unaffected. Scientists feel this is a safe way to fight the spread of dengue – safer than the use of insecticides....

History was Made Here

History was Made Here

November 4: It is a dirty and dimly-lit room, located on the first floor of the government-run JJ Hospital at Byculla, Mumbai. It includes a table, a chair and pieces of equipment occasionally used by the hospital staff, and is used as a safe refuge by tired employees looking for a quiet corner to doze off. History was made over a hundred years ago in this room, when a German bacteriologist called Robert Koch discovered the vaccine against the tuberculosis and cholera bacteria, in it....

They Make you Swallow a Fish for a Herbal Cure

They Make you Swallow a Fish for a Herbal Cure

June 17: As the northwest monsoon strikes India in the first week of June, people from all parts of India, and abroad, make a beeline for Hyderabad, the capital of Andhra Pradesh. They all have one thing in common: they suffer from the disease of asthma and gather in Hyderabad for a unique herbal cure. The medicine is stuffed inside the mouth of a three-inch live murrel fish which the patient is made to swallow. Once inside the body, the fish releases the medicine....

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