Author Archive: Andrew Lea

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From Jurassic Park to H5N1: Is There a Human Threat?

| November 28, 2012 | 0 Comments
From Jurassic Park to H5N1: Is There a Human Threat?

This past summer, Nature and Science published a pair of studies, identifying mutations and other biological modifications that significantly elevate the contagiousness of H5N1, or bird flu. The set of articles sparked a heated discussion regarding both public access to and the appropriateness of potentially dangerous research on infectious disease. Although much of the concern surrounding studies of this nature is warranted, scientists and public health officials should err on the side of scientific freedom when considering restrictions on research and its public access.

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Vaccination Education: Increasing Vaccination Rates through Accurate Information and Primary Care

| November 15, 2011 | 0 Comments
Vaccination Education: Increasing Vaccination Rates through Accurate Information and Primary Care

By Andrew Lea Infectious Disease Columnist In early October, Republican presidential hopeful Michele Bachman raised eyebrows after asserting that a “little girl suffered from mental retardation” after “a negative reaction to this potentially dangerous [HPV vaccine].”[1] Although health experts were quick to criticize this point as false rhetoric, Bachmann’s mistrust in vaccinations reflects a larger […]

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Balancing Panic and Threat: What ‘Contagion’ Tells Us about Pandemics Today

| October 20, 2011 | 0 Comments
Balancing Panic and Threat: What ‘Contagion’ Tells Us about Pandemics Today

By Andrew Lea Infectious Disease Columnist Just two months ago, the film Contagion landed itself a top spot at the box office and has since grossed 80 million dollars.[1] The apocalyptic thriller chronicles the progression of a deadly transmissible virus alongside the international community’s race to address mounting health concerns—both unfolding as global social order […]

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