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Musings of a Scepticemic Oslerphile.

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  • January 9, 2016
  • 03:36 PM

Turning to the “Infected Jelly” to Treat Ebola

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The NEJM has come out with a very interesting paper: Evaluation of Convalescent Plasma for Ebola Virus Disease in Guinea. The explosive outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa last year had hijacked the headlines and media space in a big way. Multiple solutions were touted, including the vaccine trial STRIVE. Few articles, however, looked…... Read more »

van Griensven J, Edwards T, de Lamballerie X, Semple MG, Gallian P, Baize S, Horby PW, Raoul H, Magassouba N, Antierens A.... (2016) Evaluation of Convalescent Plasma for Ebola Virus Disease in Guinea. The New England journal of medicine, 374(1), 33-42. PMID: 26735992  

  • January 9, 2016
  • 01:28 PM

If Colistin Goes, Can Carbapenems be Far Behind?

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

I wrote about the disaster-in-the-making discovery of transmissible resistance to colistin, a last resort antibiotic, when the Lancet Infectious Diseases published a paper based on data coming out from surveillance in China. At that point of time, the isolation of the transmissible gene providing resistance (mcr1 gene) gained a lot of attention. Maryn McKenna’s blog post went…... Read more »

  • December 11, 2015
  • 12:41 AM

The Apocalypse is HERE: Transmissible Resistance to Last Resort Antibiotic (Colistin)

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

Polymyxins are a group of bacterial origin cyclic polypeptides with antibacterial properties. It was isolated by a Japanese researcher in 1949 from a jar of fermenting bacteria. Colistin, also known as Polymyxin E, which is produced by the bacteria Paenibacillus polymyxa var. colistinus, is a polypeptide antibiotic, which is effective against almost all gram-negative bacilli. Owing to its nephrotoxocity and…... Read more »

  • December 10, 2015
  • 01:15 AM

Anthelminthic Drug Donation in the Epoch of Drug Resistance

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance has published an interesting review article discussing the impact of scale up of drug donations to control neglected helminthiasis in the developing countries through aid-assisted preventive chemotherapy of vulnerable populations. The highlights of the article include: Scale-up in drug donations for control of Neglected Tropical Diseases subject to Preventive…... Read more »

Albonico, M., Levecke, B., LoVerde, P., Montresor, A., Prichard, R., Vercruysse, J., & Webster, J. (2015) Monitoring the efficacy of drugs for neglected tropical diseases controlled by preventive chemotherapy. Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance. DOI: 10.1016/j.jgar.2015.08.004  

  • January 23, 2015
  • 03:25 PM

Exotic Pets: Emerging Risk Factor for Salmonellosis in Children

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The increasing trend of having exotic reptiles as pets may lead to an increase in reptile associated infections such as Salmonellosis, especially in the children in the household. ... Read more »

  • January 23, 2015
  • 01:53 PM

First Partially Successful Vaccine Developed Against Prion Disease in Deer

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The first partially successful vaccine against a prion disease (Chronic Wasting Disease in white tailed deer) is good news, but the journey has just begun. ... Read more »

  • January 22, 2015
  • 02:06 PM

Black Tar Heroin: Lower HIV Transmission vs Higher Bacterial Infections?

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The rise of street-cut, unsanitary preparations of Black Tar Heroin has allegedly reduced HIV transmission but at the cost of higher numbers of fatal, bacterial infections, notably botulism, clusters of which have been regularly identified in California.... Read more »

  • December 7, 2014
  • 11:08 AM

Novel Psittacine Adenovirus Responsible for Potentiating Zoonotic Psittacosis Outbreak: Emerging Co-Infections

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

A novel adenovirus potentiates the species jump of Chlamydophila psittaci from birds to man, causing atypical pneumonia (psittacosis). Viruses, in addition to jumping the species barrier themselves, now are helping other bacteria to do the same: is this the beginning of the age of microbes?... Read more »

  • July 7, 2014
  • 11:05 AM

Florida Clampdown on Pain Pills Lowers Drug-Related Mortality

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

Ever since I started working with the homeless youth of Delhi, I have noticed their drug and substance dependence issues and how, despite knowing the ill-effects, they have not been able to get out from under the chemical spell. Thus, when I came across a short report in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports that Florida…... Read more »

Johnson H, Paulozzi L, Porucznik C, Mack K, Herter B, & Hal Johnson Consulting and Division of Disease Control and Health Promotion, Florida Department of Health. (2014) Decline in drug overdose deaths after state policy changes - Florida, 2010-2012. MMWR. Morbidity and mortality weekly report, 63(26), 569-74. PMID: 24990490  

  • July 7, 2014
  • 10:33 AM

MERS CoV: Can it spread from camels to man?

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS CoV) is a novel single stranded RNA virus that has been doing the rounds in the Middle East, bits of Europe and North America. Given our experiences the last time we had a new respiratory virus (remember the pandemic?), things have moved rather fast this time once the…... Read more »

Azhar, E., El-Kafrawy, S., Farraj, S., Hassan, A., Al-Saeed, M., Hashem, A., & Madani, T. (2014) Evidence for Camel-to-Human Transmission of MERS Coronavirus. New England Journal of Medicine, 370(26), 2499-2505. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1401505  

  • June 21, 2014
  • 07:45 AM

West Nile Virus and Polio-like Syndromes: An Emerging Threat

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

While the whole nation has been gripped by a media-induced frenzy about the fatal effects of the so-called “litchi virus” (do not get me started on this! This issue deserves a whole post of its own!), another virus-related news has quietly slipped beneath the radars of the cumulative hysteria. This article in the Times of India […]... Read more »

  • October 3, 2013
  • 04:34 PM

Exhibitionism in Medical Education: The Brindley Lecture – Heralding A Sexual Revolution

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The first boom in treatment for male erectile dysfunction came in the 1920s and 1930 when the Russian-origin French surgeon Serge Abramovitch Voronoff started to prescribe surgical implantation of monkey testicles in the human scrotum to augment sexual prowess. This gained quite a bit of fan following for a couple of decades and brough Voronoff […]... Read more »

  • June 22, 2013
  • 01:43 PM

[Warning: NSFW] Sex and the CT (MRI, Actually)

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

Disclaimer: This post contains a lot of explicit images and one explicit video as well. The language is also not suited for the run of the mill blog, but in the spirit of writing unhindered, I have edited myself as little as possible. If there is a possibility that graphic references to (human) sexual activities offend […]... Read more »

  • January 8, 2013
  • 11:37 AM

The USA Dream for IMGs: Coming to an end? Analysing the 2012 Match

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

My attention was drawn to an article in the JAMA today (1) by one of my friends who is actively pursuing the USMLE route. And after reading this, I guess I have to admit that one now has to make haste in order to prevent waste. Now I have long been wanting to write about [...]... Read more »

Traverso G, & McMahon GT. (2012) Residency training and international medical graduates: coming to America no more. JAMA : the journal of the American Medical Association, 308(21), 2193-4. PMID: 23212494  

  • September 21, 2012
  • 04:20 PM

William Gosset: A True Student

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

Today I attended a Basic Epidemiology class meant for the undergraduate students as I thought it would be good to brush up on my basic knowledge. The topics for the day were Hypothesis Testing and An Introduction to Randomized Controlled Trials, both pretty important ones, no matter which level you are studying at. What struck [...]... Read more »

  • February 16, 2012
  • 05:02 AM

Remembering Tinsley Harrison, the Oslerian Physician

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

The past few weeks have been very demanding on me and I have not had the best of times, either on the personal or on the professional front. So, today, I took a break from the usual drudgery of life and decided to take a step back and remind myself of the bigger picture of [...]... Read more »

  • February 14, 2012
  • 01:51 AM

Valentine’s Day Kills!

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

I wish all my readers a very Happy Valentine’s Day and though I am spending it in a rather sad and loser-like fashion, I hope y’all make a day out of it! I know this is the day when pink sappiness overrules our lives and the loveless ones like myself feel rather left out of [...]... Read more »

  • February 7, 2012
  • 04:00 AM

Thoughts on World Cancer Day: Part I–Unraveling Yuvraj Singh’s Cancer

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

Sorry for missing the train on this one. February 4th is the World Cancer Day and is one of the public health days that could do with some more propaganda in the public eye. I was so caught up with work and studies it just passed me by and I could not even get the [...]... Read more »

  • November 26, 2011
  • 10:26 AM

Earworms: Kolaveri Di and the Pathogenesis of a Musical Malaise

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

Like the rest of the nation (and some would say, the world), I have been asking myself over and over again why this kolaveri kolaveri kolaveri di. And in addition to that I have been asking myself why the heck does this happen to us in the first place. Now if you are not aware [...]... Read more »

  • November 16, 2011
  • 03:55 PM

Penile Cancer: Another Reason to Stop Banging Animals: (Insert Zoophilia Joke)

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

First up, I cannot believe the numbers! This is awe-inspiring. I read the abstract three times in order to convince myself that I was not seeing things. More than the results of the study itself what intrigues me no ends is how the researchers got the participants to open up about screwing with Billy. Billy [...]... Read more »

Zequi SD, Guimarães GC, da Fonseca FP, Ferreira U, de Matheus WE, Reis LO, Aita GA, Glina S, Fanni VS, Perez MD.... (2011) Sex with Animals (SWA): Behavioral Characteristics and Possible Association with Penile Cancer. A Multicenter Study. The journal of sexual medicine. PMID: 22023719  

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