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Latest infections news and updates

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First hermaphrodite French Bulldog found

Veterinarian in Spain have identified the first French Bulldog with sexual reversal.

Sleeping with pets can bring parasites, plague

Do you snuggle with your pooch in bed? If so, think twice before doing this, as a new report warns that sleeping with pets puts one at risk of serious infections.

Virus threatens endangered parrot species

Adelaide, Australia -- One of the world's most endangered birds could become extinct, as a virus threatens its vitally important captive breeding program, Australian researchers say.

Orange-bellied parrots, Neophema chrysogaster, have been hit with a stomach virus that causes them to lose their feathers and weakens their immune systems, ScientificAmerican.com reported.

Under Australia's Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, the orange-bellied parrot was listed as critically endangered in 2006.

The species, once common in Australia, has been in decline for the past 100 years as its coastal salt marsh habitat was destroyed for agricultural purposes.

Jaundice-stricken newborns more likely to develop autism

Babies born with jaundice are at a significantly increased risk of developing autism than other infants, suggests a new study published Monday in the U.S. journal 'Pediatrics.'

Flu vaccine during pregnancy protects mother and child from infections--study

What's good for mother is also good for the baby! When moms-to-be get flu shots they not only protect themselves against the infection but also provide substantial benefits to the new born, claims a new study.

Frogs may solve antibiotics hunt

Boston -- Frog skins contain natural secretions that could lead to new antibiotics to fight infections that have become resistant to existing drugs, researchers say.

Scientists told a meeting of the American Chemical Society that more than 100 antibiotic substances were found in the skin of frog species gathered from around the world, a society release said Thursday.

One was found to be effective against "Iraqibacter," the bacterium responsible for drug-resistant infections in wounded soldiers returning from Iraq, researchers said.

Drug-resistant bacteria, which have developed the ability to resist conventional antibiotics, are growing problems worldwide and patients need new drugs to replace treatments that no longer work, one researcher said.

Cancer clue found in animal diseases

Vancouver, British Columbia -- Canadian researchers say an unexpected connection between an animal disease and human cancers could lead to effective cancer therapies.

Scientists have found links between infectious prion proteins present in certain animal diseases, such as chronic wasting disease and "mad cow" disease, and certain human cancers, such as melanoma and lymphoma, a PrioNet Canada release said Monday.

Research led by Dr. Neil Cashman of PrioNet found prion proteins underwent a physical change called "misfolding" when prion disease develops, which leaves them open to possible treatment with vaccine antibodies.

High bacteria found at 14 Iowa beaches

Des Moines, Iowa-- High fecal bacteria levels led environmental officials in Iowa to post warnings at 14 state park beaches, officials said.

Bacteria levels exceeding state limits usually mean the water contains organisms that can cause stomach aches, diarrhea or skin infections, officials told the Des Moines Register.

But the levels could change quickly, falling to safe levels or rising during the Fourth of July weekend.

Authorities urged swimmers to avoid swallowing lake water and to bathe right after swimming at the beaches, which make up more than a third of the 38 state park beaches the state monitors weekly.

Elderly people and those with immune deficiencies are most vulnerable to getting sick from the water.

FDA approves Novartis' first oral multiple sclerosis drug

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel approved the first line treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS) Gilenia is the first oral drug that Novaritis, a German drug maker, would sell under this brand name.

New therapy for infections is considered

Salt Lake City -- U.S. scientists say viral and bacterial infections might be better fought by modulating the body's response instead of just killing the pathogens.

The new research from the University of Utah and Utah State University shows modulating the body's own inflammatory response to infection may help save more lives.

The researchers led by University of Utah Professor Dean Li discovered