Stanford Global Health News
Farming linked to gut microbiome changes
Researchers at Stanford and several other institutions have linked the gut ecosystems of four Himalayan groups to the extent of each group’s departure from a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.
First ENT clinic for children opens in Zimbabwe
Stanford’s Peter Koltai is participating in an effort to advance much-needed ENT care for children in Zimbabwe.
Decision scientist seeks hepatitis B solutions
Mehlika Toy merged her interests in infectious diseases and mathematics to forge a career in decision science. She builds models to estimate the impact of clinical interventions to inform health policy.
Toll of armed conflict in Africa
A Stanford-led analysis of the indirect impact of armed conflict in Africa shows that as many as 3.5 million infants born within 30 miles of combat were killed over two decades.
Toward a malaria vaccine for pregnant women
Prasanna Jagannathan said the $100,000 prize will allow his lab team to ramp up their research in Uganda.
Stanford researchers solve the mystery of a swimming parasite
Vikram Patel: a hero in the global mental health movement
Vikram Patel, PhD, is one of the most recognized leaders in the global mental health movement. In a recent visit to Stanford for two days of presentations and meetings, Dr. Patel discussed the enormous challenges and opportunities of global mental health.
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Latest global health blogs curated from Scope, a publication of Stanford Medicine.
Making Cancer Education Accessible in Africa and Beyond
First year medical student Veronica Manzo is part of a team of Global Oncology volunteers working to implement new educational materials to help low literacy cancer patients better understand their disease and improve adherence to treatment. The materials were launched in Malawi and Rwanda last summer and the team is working to expand the initiative in several other regions throughout the year. Read more.
Lancet Commission on Global Health
As many as five billion people – or two-thirds of the world’s population - do no have access to safe, affordable surgery, according to a major new report published in The Lancet. The report, from the Lancet Commission in Global Surgery, brings attention to this enormous surgery gap and argues that building surgical infrastructure in low- and middle-income countries is critical both from an economic, as well as a human, perspective. Stanford trauma surgeon and member of the Lancet Commission, Thomas Weiser, MD, spoke with Stanford Medicine about the findings. Get the full story.
The Road to Making Polio a Disease of the Past
While worldwide eradication of polio appears almost within reach, a mutated form of the virus derived from the vaccine used to eradicate it poses a concerning risk, explains Dr. Yvonne Maldonado in a Huffington Post Op-Ed. Dr. Maldonado and others are working to devise a strategy to keep a new version of the poliovirus from spreading. Read more from Stanford Medicine.
Global Cancer Project Map Launched
Global Oncology, Inc., a nonprofit co-founded by CIGH's director of global oncology, Dr. Ami Bhatt, has launched the Global Cancer Project Map, an interactive database that enables immediate access to more than 800 cancer projects around the world in an effort to advance cancer research and care in low-resources areas. Developed in partnership with the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the Map was unveiled at the NCI Symposium on Global Cancer Research in Boston. Read more from the San Francisco Business Journal, and explore the Map.
Gavin Yamey on Investing in Global Health
Bay Area Global Health Seminar
Watch the most recent Bay Area Global Health Seminar, "Global Health Action on a Crowded Earth." The seminar series is hosted quarterly through a collaboration of Stanford University, UC Berkeley, UC San Francisco, and UC Davis.
Inside the Ebola Ward
Watch the New York Times video, featuring Stanford's Dr. Colin Bucks, on Liberia's battle against Ebola.
Why this Ebola Outbreak is Different
Read Dr. Michele Barry's article in the Boston Review on what makes this Ebola outbreak unique.
Surgery in a time of Ebola
Dr. Sherry Wren is interviewed about surgery in West Africa in the midst of the Ebola Outbreak. Read the interview and watch the media clip here. Also be sure to check out Dr. Wren's interview in the Daily Mail article, "Doctors face 'collatoral damage' from Ebola epidemic."
Is targeting access to sanitation enough?
Dr. Steve Luby says, "This rigorous evaluation is important because it provides the best evidence to date for the uncomfortable conclusion that well-funded professionally delivered sanitation programmes, even when reaching typical coverage levels, do not necessarily improve health." Read more.
Rethinking the Development of Ebola Treatments
Rajesh Gupta discusses the Ebola outbreak and the development of treatments to combat the disease.
FSI/CIGH Ebola Panel Discussion
Visit (or revisit!) Stanford's panel discussion, "Ebola: Health, Governance, Security and Ethical Dimensions" that was held on September 23. Watch the full discussion.
Develop a Workforce Reserve to Fight Ebola
Dean Barry and Larry Gostin JD discuss the Ebola outbreak and workforce shortages associated with the spread of the disease in this LA Times Op-Ed.
Strategies for Global Health Tech Implementation
Check out this Lancet article by Stanford Biodesign's Tiffany Chao, Nathan Lo, Gita Mody and Sidhartha Sinha on "Strategies for last mile implemetation of global health technologies," including medical devices and interventions developed specifically for low-resource settings that are low cost, easy to use, and culturally appropriate.
Stanford Resident Reflects on Surgical Rotation in Zimbabwe
Surgical resident, Jordan Cloyd, reflects on lessons learned and experiences gained during his surgical rotation in Zimbabwe.
Helene Gayle and Gro Brundtland May 1 Event
The Haas Center for Public Service, the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law and the Center for Innovation in Global Health presented a special event on Thursday, May 1, 2014 featuring CARE President and CEO, Helene Gayle and former Prime Minister of Norway and United Nations Special Envoy, Gro Brundtland. Dr. Michele Barry, director of the Center for Innovation in Global Health moderated the conversation.
Event partners included FACE AIDS, Organization for Global Health, Stanford Association for International Development, Stanford in Government, Stanford Journal of Public Health and the Stanford Vaccine Forum. For pictures and videos, please visit the CDDRL Flickr Album and the CDDRL Youtube Channel.
Dr. Barry at the WSDM Center's Women's Health Forum
Watch the video clip to learn more about Dr. Barry's reflections on the inconvenient truths about global research on women.
Method to prevent spread of dengue-causing virus
A team of Stanford researchers have developed a new method to prevent the viral infection that causes dengue fever. Led by Judith Frydman, PhD, professor of biology and of genetics, the new approach targets the disease by using a drug compound that tinkers with a critical cellular pathway in the host, blocking the virus at multiple steps. Read more.
World Bank Group President's advice to students
In a recent visit to Stanford, Jim Yong Kim, MD, president of the World Bank Group, sat down with 25 students for a Q&A-style discussion focused on some of the most pressing issues in global health and development. The conversation was held following his keynote address at the inaugural Global Development and Poverty (GDP) Initiative. Click here for Kim's advice to students.
Optimal C-section may be as high as 19%
Stanford's Thomas Weiser, MD, is co-author of a new study suggesting that the WHO recommendation for cesarean delivery, or C-section, rates should be re-examined. Published Dec. 1 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the study analyzed the relationship between C-sections and maternal and neonatal mortality in 194 countries. Results showed that rates of C-sections vary widely between countries and suggest there are many countries where not enough C-sections are being performed due to inadequate access to safe and timely emergency obstetrical care. View press release.
Effects of toilet facilities on child health in Africa
Cost-effectiveness of treating hepatitis B in China
A Stanford-led study published Nov. 4 in PLOS One compares the potential cost-effectiveness of all treatments for the 100 million people living with chronic hepatitis B in China. The study aims to provide Chinese policymakers with evidence to inform a national treatment strategy and help support drug pricing negotiations. The analysis, from Mehlika Toy, PhD and Samuel So, MD, is the first comprehensive, independent study of its kind and first to provide cost thresholds. Read more from Scope.
New approach to saving newborns
Gary Darmstadt, MD, knows it’s possible to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of newborn babies worldwide without building hospitals or dispensing pricey drugs. In a groundbreaking endeavor, his team worked with communities to slash newborn mortality by 54% in less than two years in a large, impoverished area in northern India. Read the full story from Stanford Medicine Magazine.
Need for expanding guidelines for parasitic worm diseases
A new health economics evaluation led by Stanford's Nathan Lo and Jason Andrews, MD, shows historical WHO treatment guidelines for schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis are far too restrictive, and provides a framework for the necessary expansion of global treatment programs. The findings were presented at the 64th ASTMH Annual Meeting. Read more.
Research at ASTMH 2015
Stanford CIGH was on the scene at the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) 64th Annual Meeting Oct. 25-29, 2015 in Philadelphia. The premier forum for the exchange of scientific advances in tropical medicine and global health, this year's ASTMH conference brought together nearly 4,200 attendees from over 75 countries dedicated to reducing the burden of tropical infectious diseases and improving health for all. Visit our blog for news updates, photos and videos from the meeting floor.
An Ebola survivor's odyssey
Ian Crozier, MD, is a walking laboratory for Ebola and a living testament to the damaging, long-term consequences of the disease, which are still very poorly understood. In a captivating seminar hosted by CIGH, Stanford Immunology and Stanford MSTP, Dr. Crozier - a physician volunteer during the outbreak in West Africa - recounted his story of survival and the complications that ensued. Read more.
A conversation with Gates Foundation's Anita Zaidi
Worldwide, more than six million children die before their fifth birthday each year, the majority of whom are children born into poverty. In a recent Conversations in Global Health seminar, Anita Zaidi, MD, an internationally recognized pediatrician and director of the enteric and diarrheal diseases program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, discussed the issues impacting maternal and child health and her work in her home country of Pakistan, which has the third highest infant mortality rates in the world. Listen here.
Filtered sunlight to treat newborn jaundice
Filtered sunlight is a cheap, effective way to treat infant jaundice, according to a new study published in NEJM. Of 433 babies treated for jaundice at a hospital in Lagos, Nigeria, half received sunlamp phototherapy, and half slept in outdoor cribs or their mothers’ laps under canopies of plastic film that filtered out ultraviolet and infrared rays. The sunlight treatment was found to be slightly more effective. Read more from the New York Times.
India's Medical Miracle
India has created what some once considered unimaginable: the world’s largest ambulance service and the first of its kind in the developing world, which reports saving more than 1.4 million lives in its first 10 years. Read more about the vision, investment and medical know-how that led to this success in this feature story from Stanford Medicine Magazine or click here for a video showing the ambulance system in action.
E-cigs in the developing world
A new commentary published in JAMA calls attention to the global health implications of electronic cigarettes and common misconception that the devices are a problem only in wealthy countries. In the piece, co-authors Michele Barry, MD, FACP and Andrew Chang, MD, discuss the widespread availability of e-cigarettes in LMICs, where they say there is even greater potential for public health impact. Read more from Reuters, Al Jazeeraand Scope.
Surgical skills training for women in Zimbabwe
In an effort to help medical students translate the knowledge gained in the classroom to the operating table, CIGH director of global surgery Sherry Wren, MD, recently facilitated the first basic surgical skills training for female medical students in Zimbabwe. The training was hosted by DREAM, an organization dedicated to empowering women in surgery in Zimbabwe, and was held in conjunction with the 2015 MEPI Symposium, which took place from July 14-16 in Harare. Read more.
HIV susceptibility linked to little-understood immune cell class
High levels of diversity among immune cells called natural killer (NK) cells may strongly predispose people to infection by HIV, and may be driven by prior viral exposures, according to a new study led by Stanford immunologist Catherine Blish, MD, PhD. Published in Science Translational Medicine, the findings were based on an analysis of blood samples from a small group of Kenyan women that had been drawn during the Mama Salama Study. Read more from TheScientist, Scope.
Cholera in post-earthquake Nepal
A team of researchers from Stanford University and icddr,b in Bangladesh authored a recent commentary in PLOS: Neglected Tropical Diseases discussing strategies for cholera prevention in post-earthquake Nepal, specifically highlighting the need for biosurveillance and early-warning systems. The article published in the midst of a recent surge in cholera with over 40 cases reported in Kathmandu.
A Natural Solution to Spread of Deadly Disease
Stanford researchers find river prawns effective at curbing spread of a potentially deadly parasitic disease that infects about 230 million people. The project received early support through the Environmental Venture Projects program, and its leaders will establish a center on disease, ecology, health and development at Stanford in collaboration with Woods and the Center for Innovation in Global Health. Read more.
Michael Nedelman named Stanford-ABC News media fellow
Michael Nedelman, a third year Stanford medical student, has been selected for the 2015-2016 Stanford-ABC News Fellowship in Media and Global Health. Now in its fifth year, the global health and media fellowship offers a unique opportunity for one fellow to receive 12-months of training in global health reporting through rotations at leading media organizations. Read the full announcement.
How Two Women from Different worlds are changing the face of surgery
Though the odds were stacked against her, Annete Bonigwe Moyo, made the decision to become a doctor at a very young age. But it wasn’t until she met Stanford surgeon and director of global surgery, Sherry Wren, MD, that she thought becoming a surgeon could be a reality. Click here for a compelling story about two pioneering women from different worlds and how empowerment can go a long way.
Read a message from the CIGH director Michele Barry, MD, in resopnse to the recent earthquakes in Nepal.
Bay Area Global Health Seminar
More than 100 students, educators and researchers convened Apr. 20 at UC-Davis for a global health seminar featuring scientific experts from leading academic institutions in the Bay Area. The panel centered around the linkages between the environment and global health. Read the panelists' calls to action.
From Polio to Ebola, Collaboration Will Be Key
Chris Elias, MD, MPH, president of the Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, was recently a featured guest for Conversations in Global Health, a seminar series that spotlights leaders in global health. In conversation with Stanford Medicine's chief communications officer Paul Costello, Elias reflected on lessons learned from the Foundation's efforts in polio eradication and the crucial role of collaboration in addressing current and future public health threats. Read more.