Current Issue


Drug resistance

At the time of going to press we were able to squeeze in an important article on a report by the World Health Organisation at the end of April which issues stark warning that the world is about to enter a so-called ‘post antibiotic’ era where minor infections could once again be fatal. The WHO says antimicrobial resistance – although not new – has now reached dangerous levels and that the public at large around the world is now at risk succumbing to diseases like sepsis, diarrhoea and pneumonia because the antibiotics used to treat these diseases are increasingly failing to work. Read the report on page 22.

The dreaded polio has returned to Iraq after an absence of 14 years. And despite a massive vaccination campaign, experts believe vaccination alone is not enough to halt the spread of this incurable and highly contagious disease in the country. They say current living conditions – dire poverty, lack of sanitation and contaminated water exacerbate the problem and unless these are resolved vaccination alone is likely to fail. Read the Iraq Update on page 20.

Also in this issue we look at healthcare research in Qatar in our Qatar report, where we speak to two researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar about their studies. One is looking at how a form of microRNA helps control cholesterol and the other is mapping the Qatari genome to help prevent inherited diseases. The report is on page 36.

3D printing is relatively new technology and is set to revolutionise many fields, not least healthcare. A group of surgeons from Kobe University in Japan has combined the 3D imaging capabilities of Computer Tomography, with 3D printing, to produce exact scale model of kidneys prior to surgery. This allows surgeons to practice surgery in difficult kidney cancer cases. Read the report on page 28.

As usual you will find a wealth of informative news, interviews and reviews in this issue.

Good health

Callan Emery

(May-June 2014)

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