Friday, September 16, 2005

Psoriasis-like skin disease and arthritis caused by inducible epidermal deletion of Jun proteins

Is a paper reporting experiments in mice, and published in Nature: (this link will not work off campus).
Microbiological Garden

This site, in English and German (Mikrobiologischer Garten) is full of presentations about bacteria in various environments: the sea, lakes, the kitchen, and about different types of organism: Euglena, phytoplankton, and others. It is compiled by Heribert Cypionka, and was mentioned in the Netwatch column in Science.

The home page is at, where you choose your language.
BabelMeSH: search Medline/PubMed in French (and more)

NLM's experimental interface at enables you to search in French, Spanish or Chinese, and also to access PubMed for Handhelds (you need a wireless enabled handheld for this last one).

I've tried the French interface. It uses a translation of MeSH, and predicts terms as you type. Results are displayed in an interface much plainer than PubMed, with links to (English) abstracts, full text (where available) and related articles.

I think it is really an interface to MeSH - I am not sure it will accept complex searches like you can do in PubMed.

There are existing Spanish language interfaces to PubMed developed by other agencies: one I have bookmarked is from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, at
Summary of recommendations from the Canadian Asthma Consensus Guidelines, 2003 and Canadian Pediatric Asthma Consensus Guidelines, 2003 (updated to December 2004)

This is published as a supplement to the Canadian Medical Association Journal
and available online.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Medical History

The complete run of this journal is now available in PubMed Central (PMC), from vol. 1, 1957-date. PMC is an online archive of bioscience journals, free to access. Go to

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Some recent papers that have caught my attention

G2D is a web based application allowing you to inspect any area of the human genome for candidate genes for a disease. It is described in a paper in
BMC Genetics.

Researchers from Iceland have used European guidelines to estimate the high risk group for cardiovascular disease in a Norwegian population, with results published online in the BMJ in August. They conclude that using those guidelines would classify most adult Norwegians as being at high risk.

A study in Birmingham (England, not Alabama) looked at patients monitoring their own blood pressure and concluded that practice based self monitoring was feasible and gives similar results to the usual method. The study appeared in the BMJ.

Another BMJ paper proposes UK guidelines for managing severe malaria in children.

Lastly, a paper in Social Science and Medicine looks at subjective stigma among those with SARS living at Amoy Gardens, Hong Kong, one of the first places to experience the outbreak.
Smoking and age related macular degeneration

Today (7th) is the RNIB's Eye Test Action Day. New research linking smoking and AMD has been published in Eye.

More details on the RNIB site (with link to the paper in Eye)
European Society of Cardiology guidelines

10 of these have been added to the Emergency Care Specialist Library (part of the National Electronic Library for Health). They cover: supraventricular arrhythmias, atrial fibrillation, acute pulmonary embolism, aortic dissection, acute heart failure, acute coronary syndromes, heart attacks, syncope and chest pain.

Access the guidelines

You can receive emails advising of new additions to this Library, which is how I know. Ask me for details.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Acinetobacter baumannii

Ah, not the last thing for today. Earlier I finished a short list of resources about this bacterium, found in soil and water, which is making a nuisance of itself in intensive care units and also among US service members (a good, non gender specific phrase) in Iraq.

The list is on my homepage ( - please credit it if you use it anywhere.
And lastly for today

SciDev.Net reports a Vietnamese doctor who has built his own endoscope for substantially less than the cost of a ready made one. Nguyen Phuoc Huy bought a microscope for $800, built a system of lenses linked to a webcam, for $30, and linked the whole thing to his computer. He taught himself computing, optics, and the maths required to do this, and can now build the endoscope in a week. SciDev.Net picked the story up from the BBC World Service's Go Digital programme and there is a link to the BBC Online site for more details.
Open letter to the Science Minister on open access

Tim Berners-Lee and seven other academics have written an open letter to Lord Sainsbury and the Research Councils, calling on the RCUK to go ahead with plans to make researchers that it funds place a copy of their research in an open access online archive. The letter is in response to the RCUK's consultation on its plans and is in contrast to views expressed by some publishers, reports the Guardian. A News Extra piece in the BMJ of 3rd September picks up this story as well.

Effectiveness of innovations in nurse led chronic disease management for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: systematic review of evi

I picked up on this BMJ early publication through Nursing Times. It concludes that there is little evidence to date for implementing nurse led management of COPD, but that data is sparse.

It has now appeared in the BMJ "proper" -;331/7515/485, in the issue dated 3rd September 2005.
Viral capsid structures

Virus Particle Explorer (viperdb) is a database of viral capsid structures, featured recently in the Netwatch column in Science (which is where I saw it). It is at - you need to register in order to use it but I did this in seconds. There was a commentary in the Journal of Virology in December 2001 which describes the database - follow this link to read it.
Glucose in airways and MRSA

The latest Nursing Times has alerted me to a study in Thorax that concludes:

"The results imply a relationship between the presence of glucose in the airway and a risk of colonisation or infection with pathogenic bacteria including MRSA".

Read the Thorax paper
Measuring air pollution

The University's ebulletin reports work done by Dr. Paul Monks and colleagues to measure air pollution in the city using a single instrument mounted on the roof of the Space Research Centre. The instrument measures sunlight and also nitrogen dioxide.
Trainee heart surgeons no threat to success of operations

The University's ebulletin reports this research undertaken by Christou Alexiou at Glenfield Hospital, which compared the results of heart valve operations undertaken by trainees and by consultants. With appropriate selection of patients and adequate supervision, the research concludes, the results are as good in each group. The article is:

Alexiou C, Doukas G, Oc M, Oc B, Hadjinikolaou L, Spyt TJ. Effect of training in mitral valve repair surgery on the early and late outcome.Ann Thorac Surg. 2005 Jul;80(1):183-8

Read the ebulletin
Bird flu in India

An article in SciDev.Net outlining India's preparation for any epidemic.

MedlinePlus, a National Library of Medicine website linking you to quality consumer health information, has a page on bird flu.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

WHO strategy to combat sleeping sickness

SciDev.Net reports the WHO's new strategy to eliminate most cases of sleeping sickness by 2015. There are links also to Lancet papers reporting sleeping sickness in Uganda.
Chloraquine and SARS-CoV

A paper in Virology Journal reports that chloraquine has strong antiviral effects on SARS coronavirus infection in primate cells. Read the paper (the journal is open access).
Modelling drug resistance in Streptococcus pneumoniae

SciDev.Net reports research done at University College London which used a computer model to do this. Read more. The research appears in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London.

Radius is a database of information on federally funded research and development (funded by the US federal government, that is). Access is free to all interested individuals, but you need to register for a licence. Access RaDiUS at
NCBI Toolbar

This is currently being tested. It's a toolbar you can download, which offers quick links to and searches of NCBI resources including PubMed and Gene. You can download it from

I have just discovered this ASM site, which includes current issues, a weekly news digest (also available as a podcast), and activities for teachers and pupils, including "Microbiology: what it's all about", which looks at what microbes and microbiologists do.
Journals offering RSS feeds

An RSS feed offers continually updating information. News sites like the BBC have them, and I monitored one in the run up to the Space Shuttle launch, which was updated with new announcements. Many journals offer their tables of contents in this form, and you can find a list at, courtesy of the University of Saskatchewan Library.
Risk of a stroke underestimated, say Stroke Association

The Stroke Association says that 50000 strokes a year could be prevented if people were more aware of the risk factors and took steps to tackle high blood pressure and reduce smoking and alcohol consumption. Stroke is the UK's third biggest killer and the biggest cause of disability, according to the Association. Read more in the Guardian, or on the Stroke Association website.