Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Bird ‘flu: not the only flying hazard


Our view of wild birds is mostly positive. They are a lovely sight as they soar through the air or drift lazily on updrafts. But there is a downside to this beauty. Birds are reservoirs for all manner of infectious disease and we can do little about it, according to an article in the November 2005 issue of Microbiology Today, the quarterly magazine of the Society for General Microbiology.

“Wild birds carry several important human and animal diseases,” explains Dr Keith Jones of Lancaster University. The most notorious of these is bird ‘flu, but the list also includes other influenza viruses, West Nile Virus, psittacosis and Lyme disease. “We have also discovered that gulls can carry E. coli O157.”

Not only do these animals carry many harmful microbes, but because of migration patterns they are also responsible for the worldwide spread of the diseases.

“If we can prevent wild birds from mixing with poultry it should make a difference,” explains Dr Jones. “Stopping the spread of diseases such as avian ‘flu to farmed birds would avoid huge economic losses, and at worst, loss of human lives.”

“Greater bio-security on farms could also prevent the spread of food poisoning bacteria amongst livestock and the direct contamination of salads with pathogens in bird droppings,” says Dr Jones.

Dr Jones also believes that cleaning up contaminated outdoor eating areas and not feeding wild birds will help to prevent cases of food poisoning. “These studies show that it is not just because of bird ‘flu that we should be wary of contact with wild birds and their faeces,” says Dr Jones.

Air surrounds us and we breathe in all that it contains every day — gases, dust particles and microbes. This issue of Microbiology Today looks at the microbes in our air, from how they get there and survive to how they move from around the globe.

Other features in the November 2005 issue of Microbiology Today include:

· Microbes in the air: John Tyndall and the spontaneous generation debate (page 164)
· Microbes and climate (page 168)
· Microbe-laden aerosols (page 172)
· Clouds of desert dust and microbiology: a mechanism of global dispersion (page 180)
· Comment: Clostridium difficile (page 204)

These are just some of the articles that appear, together with all the regular features and reports of Society activities.

Faye Jones | alfa
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Novel mechanisms of action discovered for the skin cancer medication Imiquimod
21.10.2016 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Second research flight into zero gravity
21.10.2016 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>