Vaccines are safe, and they save lives

David Kimberlin, M.D., is the vice chair of Pediatrics, co-director of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at UAB and a physician at Children's of Alabama. He is the editor of the American Academy of Pediatrics' ...

Oct 06, 2015
popularity21 comments 0

Waging war against rotavirus

Canada should show leadership in supporting adoption of the rotavirus vaccination in developing countries, but it must also ensure that all Canadian infants are vaccinated against the virus, states an editorial in CMAJ (Canadian ...

Apr 10, 2012
popularity0 comments 0

Collaboration leads to new rotavirus vaccine

A new rotavirus vaccine that has the potential to save over half a million lives worldwide each year has reached a pivotal milestone after clinical trials results found the vaccine provided a strong immune response in over ...

Sep 04, 2014
popularity0 comments 0

Rotavirus is the most common cause of severe diarrhoea among infants and young children, and is one of several viruses that cause infections often called stomach flu, despite having no relation to influenza. It is a genus of double-stranded RNA virus in the family Reoviridae. By the age of five, nearly every child in the world has been infected with rotavirus at least once. However, with each infection, immunity develops, and subsequent infections are less severe; adults are rarely affected. There are five species of this virus, referred to as A, B, C, D, and E. Rotavirus A, the most common, causes more than 90% of infections in humans.

The virus is transmitted by the faecal-oral route. It infects and damages the cells that line the small intestine and causes gastroenteritis. Although rotavirus was discovered in 1973 and accounts for up to 50% of hospitalisations for severe diarrhoea in infants and children, its importance is still not widely known within the public health community, particularly in developing countries. In addition to its impact on human health, rotavirus also infects animals, and is a pathogen of livestock.

Rotavirus is usually an easily managed disease of childhood, but worldwide nearly 500,000 children under five years of age still die from rotavirus infection each year and almost two million more become severely ill. In the United States, before initiation of the rotavirus vaccination programme, rotavirus caused about 2.7 million cases of severe gastroenteritis in children, almost 60,000 hospitalisations, and around 37 deaths each year. Public health campaigns to combat rotavirus focus on providing oral rehydration therapy for infected children and vaccination to prevent the disease.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

Latest Spotlight News

Genes for a longer, healthier life found

Out of a 'haystack' of 40,000 genes from three different organisms, scientists at ETH Zurich and a research consortium in Jena have found genes that are involved in physical ageing. If you influence only one of these genes, ...

Watching eyes prevent littering

People are less likely to drop litter if it has printed eyes on it, researchers at Newcastle University, UK, have found. An image of watching eyes reduced the odds of littering by around two thirds.

Anxiety can kill your social status

Neuroscientists at EPFL identify a brain region that links anxious temperament to low social status. The researchers were able to tweak social hierarchy in animals by using vitamin B3.

Wiring rules untangle brain circuitry

Our brains contain billions of neurons linked through trillions of synaptic connections, and although disentangling this wiring may seem like mission impossible, a research team from Baylor College of Medicine took on the ...

Higher cigarette taxes linked to fewer infant deaths

Higher taxes and prices for cigarettes are strongly associated with lower infant mortality rates in the United States, according to a new study from Vanderbilt University and the University of Michigan released Dec. 1 in ...

Researchers grow retinal nerve cells in the lab

Johns Hopkins researchers have developed a method to efficiently turn human stem cells into retinal ganglion cells, the type of nerve cells located within the retina that transmit visual signals from the eye to the brain. ...