Do I Need a Polio Vaccine? Study Suggests Now More Than Ever

Boy in Pakistani Market

Polio has been nearly eradicated throughout the globe, and just three countries (Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan) still have endemic cases. But, a new study suggests that this could change if vaccination and sanitation efforts are not upheld throughout the globe, and not just in polio endemic countries.

The study, published in the June issue of the journal PLoS Biology, looked at polio cases in the United States before the 1955 introduction of the Salk polio vaccine. The study found that many children were exposed to polio by the age of 15 but had not become sick, making them asymptomatic carriers of the disease, meaning they are able to pass it on even though they do not have much in the way of symptoms.

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New Research Suggests an AIDS Vaccine Is Possible

AIDS Vaccine Research

New research from a joint study conducted by Rockefeller University and the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative suggests that an AIDS vaccine may be possible.

The research, which was conducted on mice, showed an increased immunity to the HIV infection, which could help prevent the development of the AIDS virus in infected individuals. While this is just initial research, it gives some hope to the development of a vaccine against a disease that kills more than 1.5 million people annually.

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How a New Vaccination Program in India Could Affect Travelers and the Country at Large

A new, robust and comprehensive vaccination program launched in India could change the face of infectious disease in the country by 2020.

The campaign, called Mission Indradhanush for the seven colors of the rainbow, hopes to provide protection against seven key infectious diseases: diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis (not available in the U.S. nor Canada), measles and hepatitis B. It will also offer Japanese encephalitis and influenza vaccinations in certain parts of the country.

The Indian government hopes to bring national immunization levels to at least 90 percent by the end of 2020, the standard for most developed nations.

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Studies Show Increased Need for Universal HPV Vaccination

Happy Millenials

Human papillomavirus, or HPV, is becoming an increasingly common infection among men and women. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 6.2 million people become newly infected with HPV every year in the United States alone. However, new research has found that increased vaccination and changes to who receives the vaccine could help protect even more people.

HPV itself is rarely fatal and generally causes dermatological problems such as warts, but, in some cases, the sexually transmitted disease can lead to various forms of cancer. Two types of HPV account for 70 percent of all cancer cases and contribute to an estimated 275,000 deaths annually.

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Ramadan: an Important and Fascinating Month for the Islamic World

Man Praying

This year, June marks one of the most important international holy times: Ramadan. The ninth month of the Islamic calendar marks a time of fasting and prayer throughout the Islamic world and provides amazing opportunities, and occasional difficulties, for travelers in the Middle East and other Islamic regions.

Ramadan marks the month when the Islamic holy book, the Qur’an, was revealed to the prophet Muhammed. Many consider this month even more important because of the added blessings that are believed to be bestowed upon adherents for fasting and doing good deeds toward others.

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