By David Tuller, DrPH

This post is about a serious issue–ethical approval for research studies involving children. It is also about how powerful institutions, like leading medical journals, respond to concerns. But the story is really too long and complicated. I recommend it only for those following things pretty closely or who for whatever reason like this kind of granular, somewhat obsessive analysis.

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TWiV 474: Call me fish meal

The TWiVanguardians take on Bodo saltans virus, a leviathan which infects an abundant flagellated eukaryote in Earth’s waters.

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Bodo saltans

Bodo saltans

The discovery of Mimivirus in a French cooling tower amazed virologists and changed our view of the biology and evolution of giant viruses. Since then, many other giant viruses have been identified, and with three exceptions, they all appear to infect species of Acanthamoeba. Now a new member of the Mimivirus family has been discovered that infects the flagellated eukaryote Bodo saltans (pictured: image credit).

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By David Tuller, DrPH

I wanted to post something this week, but not a whole long thing. So I thought I’d just post the top of what I’ll post in full next week.

This week ends the first half–six months!–of my crowdfunded project. Sometime soon I’ll post something or other looking backward and forward a bit. But not today.

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The Fellowship of the Virus discuss enhancement of dengue disease in humans: the contribution of antibody concentration and increased binding to Fc receptors.

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By David Tuller, DrPH

As it turns out, the University of Bristol did complain about me to Berkeley. I found out recently that there has indeed been “private and confidential communication” at a “senior level,” as Sue Paterson, Bristol’s director of legal services, suggested in her thuggish letter to me last month. I haven’t seen this communication so I’m not sure exactly what it entailed, but obviously it involved my “actions and behavior” towards Bristol personnel (i.e. Professor Esther Crawley), which Ms. Paterson also referenced in her letter to me.

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Antibody dependent enhancementSevere dengue virus disease, also known as dengue hemorrhagic fever/dengue shock syndrome (DHF/DSS), is most likely to occur in previously infected individuals experiencing a second encounter with a different serotype. A specific range of serum antibody titers has been shown to enhance viral replication in cell culture and in animal models, and now in humans.

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By David Tuller, DrPH

On September 20, 2017, a BMJ Publishing Group journal, Archives of Disease in Childhood published the SMILE trial. This trial investigated an intervention called the Lightning Process as a treatment for kids with CFS/ME (as the study called the disease). The lead investigator was Professor Esther Crawley, the University of Bristol pediatrician and a well-known researcher in the field. The trial’s full title: “Clinical and cost-effectiveness of the Lightning Process in addition to specialist medical care for paediatric chronic fatigue syndrome: randomised controlled trial.”

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The TWiV team reveal the origin of the poxvirus membrane, and how a retrovirus drove the development of the placenta of a lizard.

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Cindy, Steph, and Vincent discuss recent problems with dengue virus vaccine, and a bi-specific monoclonal antibody against Zika virus.

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