Archives of Public Health is inviting submissions for a new thematic series on Health Literacy in Public Health.
The journal is seeking original manuscripts that present empirical research on health literacy applied to the field of public health including:
• Measurement of health literacy in community settings or at population level
• Links between health literacy, healthy lifestyle, health outcomes and health service use
• Role of health literacy in explaining socio-economic disparities in health
• Interventions to advance health literacy or to facilitate access of services to persons with low levels of health literacy
While predominantly applied to health care services, the concept of health literacy has in recent years been expanded to include information seeking, decision making, problem solving, …
Guest blog post by Professor Mike McConnell, Stanford University School of Medicine, USA.
Chemotherapy can injure heart muscle, leading to heart failure, but this damage may not be apparent until many years later. Children receiving chemotherapy are of particular concern, as the risk of heart failure increases as they age into adulthood. A safe, noninvasive method to detect this damage could identify high risk patients and prompt earlier preventive therapy.
In an article published today in Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance, researchers from the University of Alberta, Canada present their result from a study looking at MRI of the heart in 30 children two years after chemotherapy. They found changes in the heart muscle even though overall …
The Division of Lung Diseases of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute funds a significant amount of research on the causes, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of lung diseases and sleep disorders in the US. Advances in these areas were discussed at the recent American Thoracic Society meeting (ATS 2013), where BMC Medicine joined over 13,000 delegates to hear the latest developments in this field.
The meeting addressed several controversial topics in COPD, which included an interesting presentation by BMC Medicine’s Editorial Board Member Wisia Wedzicha on the effective use of macrolides to prevent exacerbations, which can cause severe illness, disability and death if not treated in time. As highlighted by Bartolome Celli, it is …
In tropical climates, bluetongue lizards seek oases of cool in order to avoid overheating finds research published in Animal Biotelemetry this week. Unlike their cool-climate cousins, whose behavioral thermoregulation is determined by seeking heat, the diurnal bluetongue lizards of northwestern Australia can only survive where they can use shady refuges of dense vegetation to cool down. And this comes with a warning – these areas are also favoured by toxic cane toads, which threaten the conservation of this species.
By attaching GPS devices to 49 bluetongue lizards (Tiliqua, Scincidae) and radio tracking their movements for up to 221 days, researchers at the University of Sydney have identified critically important features of the habitat …
The May issue of Genome Medicine features two articles that highlight the role of microbes in human health and disease as part of a recently launched thematic series on this exact topic. Charis Eng muses on the importance of maintaining a healthy microbiome to prevent disease and discusses how microbiome profiles could be used as a diagnostic tool for cancer. On a related topic, a study by Chris Boshoff and colleagues reveals that specific genetic alterations are associated with human papillomavirus (HPV) status in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Notably, HPV-positive tumors have more copy number alterations in the PI3 kinase pathway, which might be important for the interpretation of current …
Home gardens can be used to alleviate hunger, malnutrition, economic hardship and disease. These are the findings of a comprehensive literature review by Galhena et al., published today in Agriculture & Food Security, which investigates the uses of home gardens in the context of food security, and specifically in post-conflict situations.
The use of home gardens is a longstanding and effective strategy for coping with the daily threat of food and nutritional insecurity in many developing countries. Home gardens comprise of small areas of land close to the homestead, where a family can grow subsistence produce in order to supplement their diet, as well as to buffer socio-economic hardships. These gardens can incorporate …
Technology is inadequately assessed for effectiveness to reduce arsenic contamination in groundwater finds a new systematic review published in Environmental Evidence today. Many investigations into the effectiveness of these intervention strategies are poorly devised and thus cannot be relied upon to provide an evidence base for policy making.
In a number of developing countries worldwide, groundwater provides an alternative to drinking visibly polluted surface water. However, Arsenic is colourless and odourless and therefore is often ingested accidentally through drinking contaminated groundwater. Arsenic poisoning poses a threat to public health, and is a serious environmental hazard in many developing countries worldwide.
There are several methods available for removing arsenic from contaminated water. Researchers from the University of Exeter …
To mark the passing of the sun into Gemini, this month Genome Biology has published a special issue on twin studies. Not really: we just had a lot of twin studies and they all fortuitously ended up being published in May. But they’re good studies, so we thought it was worth highlighting them here.
Human genomics is mostly correlative: a genetic variant is seen to be associated with a given phenotype. In some cases, the association might be strong enough to infer a cause, but as everyone knows, correlation is no proof of causation. Unfortunately, the sort of confirmatory functional work that might be possible in laboratory animals is usually frowned upon by pesky ethics committees if you propose …
That DNA methylation studies change the way we perceive genetic regulation should be clear to anyone who has read last year’s Genome Biology special issue on epigenomics (if you haven’t yet – you definitely should!). Changes in DNA methylation have been associated with cancer, neurodevelopmental diseases and all sorts of metabolic disorders. The role of DNA methylation in cell differentiation and reprogramming has also been previously described.
In other words, DNA methylomics has become a convenient tool. Whenever some more or less inexplicable changes in the cell occur, you can say: look, DNA methylation is affected too! And it almost invariably will be. Which is why the rare studies demonstrating otherwise are so important: reminding us that in biology …
June is Cancer Immunotherapy Awareness Month, an initiative to increase the public’s awareness of the revolutionary new treatment approach. Cancer immunotherapy utilises the immune system to fight the disease and represents the most immediate hope for curing patients with any type of cancer. BioMed Central and the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) are therefore pleased to announce the timely launch of the Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer (JITC), an open access, peer reviewed journal that encompasses all aspects of tumor immunology and cancer immunotherapy, from basic research through to clinical applications.
As the official journal of SITC, JITC will be the cancer immunotherapy community’s prime forum to discuss the critical issues in tumor immunology and cancer …