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Slew of anti-abortion laws may thwart Zika research

Anti abortion laws thwart Zika researchEven as mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus advance northward, lawmakers in 18 states are trying to block the fetal tissue research that might reveal the keys to unlocking the disease and preventing the massive birth defects associated with it.

The furor from the Planned Parenthood sting videos is driving the tide of bills, which range from outright bans on research using aborted tissue to prohibitions on tissue donations.


Florida governor signs law ending funding to clinics providing abortions

Rik ScottFlorida Governor Rick Scott on Friday signed a law that cuts off state funding for preventive health services to clinics providing abortion and imposes abortion restrictions already being tested before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Florida is among many states adopting new abortion laws as conservatives seek to chip away at the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion.


Medical experts call for global drug decriminalization

Medical experts call for global drug decriminalizationAn international commission of medical experts is calling for global drug decriminalisation, arguing that current policies lead to violence, deaths and the spread of disease, harming health and human rights.

The commission, set up by the Lancet medical journal and Johns Hopkins University in the United States, finds that tough drugs laws have caused misery, failed to curb drug use, fuelled violent crime and spread the epidemics of HIV and hepatitis C through unsafe injecting.


Kevin Turner, Lead Plaintiff in NFL CTE Lawsuit Dies

Mike PenceFormer NFL fullback Kevin Turner died Thursday at age 46 after battling ALS for six years. He was a lead plaintiff in the class-action lawsuit that accused the NFL of hiding the dangers of head injuries.

According to his foundation's website, Turner was surrounded by family and friends at the time of his death.

"Myra and I lost a great son today. He will be missed so much," his father, Raymond Turner, posted on Facebook. "Thanks to everyone so very much for your support and prayers during this journey. He was ready to go to Heaven, excited he said, Love y'all and God Bless."


NFL used flawed data, left out at least 100 concussions in studies

NFL concussion research flawedOn Thursday the New York Times released a bombshell of a report on the NFL's research into concussions, claiming the data the league used is "incomplete," "flawed" and "faulty." These assertions are made largely in part because of missing information from the concussion research the league began in 1994.

Here are four key points taken from a lengthy investigative report:

Incomplete concussion data: According to data obtained by the Times, the NFL's research was missing significant chunks of information. Specifically, there were more than 100 concussions missing from the data and more than 10 percent of the total diagnosed cases.


Iowa’s 60 Million Laying Hens Aren’t Being Monitored by Food-Safety Inspectors

60 million chickens not inspectedIn 2010, 550 million eggs were recalled after thousands of people were sickened with salmonella in an outbreak tied to farms in Iowa, the leading state for laying-hen production. Despite Iowa producing 15 billion eggs annually, amounting to $2 billion in sales, both state and federal food-safety inspections were halted there last year, the Des Moines Register reported on Sunday.

The concern was that letting inspectors into laying-hen facilities could help spread the virulent strain of bird flu that has been killing off birds in the tens of millions.


Mathematical model may improve hepatitis C drug treatment

Hepatitis C treatmentHepatitis C patients are often cured before completing a treatment regimen, suggesting patients require less of the drugs needed to fight the disease, according to a recent study.

Researchers at Loyola University devised a mathematical model that predicts the length of time patients need direct-acting antiviral drugs, potentially limiting the cost of being treated with an expensive drug.

Using more frequent blood testing, the researchers were able to determine hepatitis C levels and predict when the drug sofosbuvir, combined with one of three others, could be stopped.


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