FROM Maryn McKenna
Bugs, Drugs and Super-bugs Public health officials don't want to "cry wolf" or frighten people more than needed. So, they don't often use apocalyptic language. That's why it's rare to hear the head of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warn about an impending "nightmare" or his British counterpart talk about a threat comparable to "terrorism ." But that's how they are describing the growing resistance of bacteria to antibiotics, which could set medicine back by a hundred years. Over-prescription by doctors and use in farm animals get part of the blame, and despite the need for new antibiotics, Big Pharma is cutting back on research and development. It's an all-too familiar problem that's becoming increasingly urgent. What will it take to solve it? What can we do in the meantime?
Food Safety, Resistance to Antibiotics and Healthy Farm Animals Antibiotics are essential to the so-called "miracle" of modern medicine. Now antibiotic-resistant bacteria have shown up at American grocery stores. Researchers in Arizona sampled meat and poultry sold at grocery stores in Flagstaff, Los Angeles, Chicago, Fort Lauderdale and Washington, DC. What they found has added fuel to the controversy over the use of antibiotics on factory farms. Some claim that's evidence that antibiotics are losing their effectiveness because of overuse on American farms.
Food Safety and Antibiotics for Healthy Farm Animals Researchers in Arizona sampled meat and poultry sold at grocery stores in Flagstaff, Los Angeles, Chicago, Fort Lauderdale and Washington, DC. What they found has added fuel to the controversy over the use of antibiotics. Factory farmers use antibiotics not just to treat sick animals and prevent them from getting sick, but to make them grow bigger, faster. Last year, the FDA urged the industry to cut back because overuse may make dangerous bacteria resistant to antibiotics. Now antibiotic-resistant bacteria have been found on meat and poultry sold in grocery stores. Does it come from the meat or from human contact? Is it a potential danger in every American kitchen? Is antibiotic effectiveness itself at risk?
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.
Truth and Lies in Trumpland Donald Trump is using mis-information like no President has before him. It's an unprecedented challenge to the news media, and a potential threat to democracy. We hear how the "leader of all the people" is dividing Americans and confusing the rest of the world.
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?