The Biochemist Blog

Yellow fever: Brazil’s current outbreak

Louise Corscadden, University of Leicester, UK

Most people are first introduced to yellow fever at the travel clinic; upon imminent jet-setting to a tropical destination far away, we are told we need a yellow fever vaccine. To us, yellow fever is a disease of places far away: out of sight, out of mind. However, to those in the 47 at-risk countries in South America and Africa (WHO, 2018), it is a highly lethal disease. The World Health Organization estimates that in 2013 between 84,000 and 170,000 people suffered from the severe form of the disease, with 29,000 to 60,000 dying as a result (WHO, 2018). Last year, the disease once again reared its head in Brazil in a precedence recently unseen in years.

No weak evidence, it’s Evidence Week!

Leah Fitzsimmons, University of Birmingham

Monday, 25 June, saw the opening of the first ever ‘Evidence Week’ in the Houses of Parliament. Organised by Sense About Science in association with House of Commons Library, House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, POST – Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, and SAGE Publishing, the idea was to hold a week full of events, masterclasses and other sessions to help bring the public and parliamentarians into discussion about the use of evidence in public life.

New therapy helps your own immune system kill cancer cells

Emma Pettengale, Portland Press

You might have seen the recent news story about Judy Perkins – the woman cured of terminal breast cancer using her own immune cells in a world first. Some doctors believe that the pioneering development could mark a “paradigm shift” in cancer research and we’re going to take a look at the case, and explain the science behind it!