"On a sunny day in 1998, Maura Gillison was walking across the campus of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, thinking about a virus. The young oncologist bumped into the director of the university's cancer centre, who asked politely about her work. Gillison described her discovery of early evidence that human papillomavirus (HPV) — a ubiquitous pathogen that infects nearly every human at some point in their lives — could be causing tens of thousands of cases of throat cancer each year in the United States. The senior doctor stared down at Gillison, not saying a word. “That was the first clue that what I was doing was interesting to others and had potential significance,” recalls Gillison."
Human papillomavirus is causing a new form of head and neck cancer— leaving researchers scrambling to understand risk factors, tests and treatments.[more inside]
The Cultural Cognition Project at Yale looks at the cause of polarizing debates such as: global warming, gun ownership, school shootings, terrorism, nanotechnology, public health, nuclear power, foreign wars and just about every heated thread in Internet history. In short, the polarizing issue is "risk"- the perception of risk, and the proposed solutions to risk. It turns out people see risk in polarizing ways according to where they stand on a scale of cultural beliefs. [more inside]
Enjoying your Friday night? Be careful out there. In between other things, including voting for huge cuts to the EPA's budget and regulating power, the U.S. House of Representatives just voted to eliminate Title X, originally signed into law 40 years ago by Republican President Richard Nixon, which provides funding for Planned Parenthood. [more inside]
The Great West End and Railroad Square Handcar Regatta and Exposition of Mechanical Wonders of 2010 As if September wasn't already a fine month in Northern California for urban artistic eccentricity, the Santa Rosa Handcar Regatta just completed its third iteration. Human-powered vehicles, human ingenuity, and general googawfery, the festival picks right up where How Berkeley Can You Be left off... Yeah, yeah, yeah SLST (Single Link Steam Punk)...but that is some fun shit right there... Coming soon to an abandoned rail bed near you?
Depending on which side of the Irish Sea you live, the HPV jab is either a killer that shouldn't be given to young women or it's a necessary and life saving vaccination. Layscience.net exposes the disturbingly awful cynicism of The Daily Mail. (via badscience.net)
Luc Montagnier, Francoise Barre-Sinoussi and Harald zur Hausen take the Nobel Prize in Medicine for the discoveries of the AIDS virus and HPV, respectively. Take that Gallo.
FDA approves HPV vaccine. It prevents infection from 70% of the cancer-causing strains of human papillomavirus, an STD that will affect nearly 80% of the population at some point in their lives. The vaccine has been approved for use in women ages 9 to 26. Controversy surrounding the vaccine (discussed earlier) has thankfully not stopped its progress. That just leaves a few questions: How long will it last? Who's paying for it? What are the side-effects? Oh, screw all that, where do I get in line?
The new lies about women's health (image slightly NSFW) according to Glamour. More on why every egg is sacred to the Bush administration. [via Wired's Sex Drive Daily]
"The mind-set that invites a couple to use contraception is an anti-child mind-set," she told me. "So when a baby is conceived accidentally, the couple already have this negative attitude toward the child. Therefore seeking an abortion is a natural outcome. We oppose all forms of contraception." Don't even mention the mind-set behind a vaccine for HPV.
Newsfilter: Several pharmaceutical companies are developing vaccines against strains of the human papilloma virus that cause cervical cancer. Some folks think these shots should be required for all kids entering puberty. Others are afraid that teens given the vaccination would view it as a free pass for premarital sex.
What's "the primary cause of cervical cancer?" Did you know that "as many as 40 million Americans are infected?" Should you be alarmed that "There is no direct treatment?" Let's talk Papilloma.