Disease

Children head back to school in August even as the Covid-19 delta variant makes its rounds. For reasons that aren’t fully understood, kids do not get as sick from Covid-19 as adults do. The role of schools in fostering spread of the virus is also under study.

Covid-19

Why Don't Kids Tend to Get as Sick From Covid-19?

Some children have been hospitalized and some have died, but at a tiny fraction of the adult rate. Scientists are trying to find out why.

Early trials show a second dose of the J&J Covid-19 vaccine after six months later provides a promising antibody response.

Covid-19

Johnson & Johnson Says Extra Shot Gives Promising Immune Boost

Those who got the one-shot Covid-19 vaccine could benefit from a booster after eight months, according to the company

So far, researchers have discovered 100 plague victims buried in 60 graves.

Construction in Poland Reveals Graves of 18th-Century Plague Victims

The Great Northern War plague outbreak peaked between roughly 1708 and 1712

Individuals wear masks while shopping at a grocery store in Los Angeles. Masks help prevent breakthrough infections.

Covid-19

Six Important Things to Know About Breakthrough Infections

As the Delta variant likely drives more cases of Covid-19 in vaccinated individuals, experts weigh in with helpful information

The fungus Hemileia vastatrix strikes a plant on a coffee farm in Aquires, Costa Rica.

New Study Shows Climate Change May Increase the Spread of Plant Pathogens

Models suggest that higher latitude crops will experience higher infection rates and a greater number of threats

The outbreaks happened earlier in the year between January and April in Washington D.C. and Texas. While both outbreaks were unrelated to each other, they both occurred within long-term care facilities and hospitals where patients had extended stays.

CDC Reports Several Cases of Drug-Resistant Fungal Infection in Two U.S. Cities

In total, five cases of the fungal infection were resistant to three known classes of antifungal medications

Via Getty: "A state wildlife veterinarian inspects a European starling carcass before shipping it to the University of Georgias Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study (SCWDS) from the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources headquarters on July 2, 2021."

Mysterious Bird-Killing Illness Spreads to More Mid-Atlantic States

Researchers rule out several pathogens but still don’t know what is causing the deaths

A researcher looks at Artemisia annua seedlings. The plant contains malaria-fighting compounds.

World Health Organization Certifies China as Malaria-Free

In the 1940s, the country recorded 30 million cases of malaria each year

Ancient DNA and proteins gathered from the specimen's bones and teeth revealed the presence of Yersinia pestis.

New Research

Oldest Strain of Plague Bacteria Found in 5,000-Year-Old Human Remains

Unlike the 'Black Death' in the 14th century, the ancient infection probably did not spread quickly between people

This transmission electron microscopic image shows the pandemic coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

Covid-19

Over 20,000 Years Ago, a Coronavirus Epidemic Left Marks in Human DNA

The oldest modern coronavirus is about 820 years old, but humanity has been fighting similar viruses for millennia

CRISPR allows scientists to cut and insert small slices of DNA with precision, illustrated here.

Innovation for Good

Early Study Shows Promise of CRISPR Injection to Treat Rare Disease

Three people who received a high dose of the gene editing tool in a clinical study saw significant improvement in their condition

Officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention anticipate that Delta will become the dominant variant in the United States within the next few months.

Covid-19

Covid-19 Delta Variant Emerges as Primary Threat Around the World

A surge of cases in the United Kingdom suggests that Delta is the most transmissible variant yet identified

Scholars used a newly developed technique to test skeletons' teeth for the presence of Yersinia pestis, the pathogen responsible for the plague.

Cool Finds

Why Weren't These Black Death Victims Buried in Mass Graves?

New research suggests some Europeans who died of the bubonic plague were individually interred with care

A Covid-19 restrictions sign hangs outside a supermarket in Austin, Texas. Lauren Ancel Meyers at the University of Texas at Austin has shared her team’s modeling results with city officials who make decisions about Covid-19 measures.

Covid-19

What Data Scientists Learned by Modeling the Spread of Covid-19

Models of the disease have become more complex, but are still only as good as the assumptions at their core and the data that feed them

Part of a clinical study called Project S, a small town in Brazil set out to vaccinate its entire adult population. With 95% of adults vaccinated, the city has seen a steep decline in Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths.

Mass Vaccination Success in This Small Brazil City Shows Promise of Low-Efficacy Vaccines

In Serrana, 95 percent of adults received the CoronaVac vaccine, which has a 50% efficacy rate. Now, the city is ready to reopen

The World Health Organization has identified four variants of concern, named Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta, and six variants of interest.

Talking About Coronavirus Variants Just Got Easier With New Greek Letter Naming System

The move aims to remove the stigmatization of location-based names and reduce the confusion of scientific names

A health worker preserves mucosal swab samples at a Covid-19 testing center in New Delhi, India.

Scientists Are Creating a Blood Test to Measure Covid-19 Immunity

Once researchers determine a 'correlate of protection,' they will be able to measure immunity and develop new vaccines more quickly

Iztuzu Beach in Turkey was closed during part of the pandemic. Around the world, lockdowns to combat Covid-19 forced people to stay home and halt activities—with mixed results for ecosystems and the living things within them.

Covid-19

The Positive and Negative Impacts of Covid on Nature

The absence of humans in some places led animals to increase, while the cancellation of conservation work in other places harmed species

A nurse gives a 16-year-old a Pfizer-BioNTech shot at a clinic in Florida.

Moderna Announces Its Covid-19 Vaccine Is Effective in Adolescents

The company completed a final phase trials in 3,732 adolescents between ages 12 and 17

In a lab experiment, a blind 58-year-old male volunteer was able to identify the position of two cups after receiving a new type of gene therapy.

New Research

New Gene Therapy Partially Restores Sight to Blind Man

Researchers inserted genes that code for light-sensitive proteins in algae into the man’s retina, and now he reports limited but much improved vision