Dogs Are Being Trained to Detect COVID-19 Odors and Could Test 750 People Per Hour

Elias Marat wrote . . . . . . . . .

There’s plenty of reason why dogs have historically been considered man’s best friend. For at least the past 15,000 years, dogs have served human societies in myriad ways. Whether by hunting pray, helping to herd sheep and cattle, or simply providing us with unconditional love, they have proved themselves to be indispensable companions.

In modern times, dogs have also provided crucial help sniffing out pests such as bedbugs, narcotics, trapped humans or broken gas mains after earthquakes, improvised explosive devices in war zones, and even ailments such as migraine headaches, malaria Parkinson’s disease, and cancer. After all, with some 200 to 300 million sense receptors in dogs’ noses—versus 5 million in human noses—our trusty canine comrades have olfactory abilities that can sense odors we have no ability to perceive.

And now, an ambitious project hopes to wield dogs’ uncanny sense of smell to train them to detect CoViD-19, the infectious disease caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-COV-2.

British charity Medical Detection Dogs has partnered with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Durham University to begin efforts to train their elite sniffing dogs for the task. According to behavioral psychologist Dr. Claire Guest, CEO of Medical Detection Dogs, there is no reason to doubt that the canines are up to the task.

Guest told CTV News:

“We already train dogs in the past… [there is] absolutely no reason why a dog can’t detect the virus.”

And it’s not just a matter of confidence—it’s also an approach that is rooted in the rigorous science of over a dozen peer-reviewed papers that Medical Detection Dogs has produced in the course of training dogs to detect serious illnesses.

Head of the disease control department at LSHTM Prof. James Logan explained:

“Our previous work demonstrated that dogs can detect odors from humans with a malaria infection with extremely high accuracy – above the World Health Organization standards for a diagnostic.”

After six weeks of intensive training we could see a brigade of dogs who are capable of providing a speedy and non-invasive diagnosis at the tail end of the pandemic. The dogs would undergo some of the same training they received to detect bacterial infections, prostate cancer, and Parkinson’s—mainly through sniffing samples, indicating when they found it, and being able to detect the subtle changes in skin temperature indicating a fever, according to a statement from the group.

Logan cautioned that it still remains early for detecting any specific odor belonging to CoViD-19. However, because other respiratory diseases cause body odor changes, it is quite likely that CoViD-19 does as well, which means that dogs would definitely be able to detect it. Such a new diagnostic tool has the potential to provide a revolutionary new method to help curb the pandemic.

On the Medical Detection Dogs website, Guest wrote:

“The aim is that dogs will be able to screen anyone, including those who are asymptomatic and tell us whether they need to be tested. This would be fast, effective and non-invasive and make sure the limited NHS testing resources are only used where they are really needed.

We know that other respiratory diseases like COVID-19, change our body odor so there is a very high chance that dogs will be able to detect it. This new diagnostic tool could revolutionize our response to COVID-19 in the short term, but particularly in the months to come, and could be profoundly impactful.”

Professor Steve Lindsay at Durham University says:

“If the research is successful, we could use COVID-19 detection dogs at airports at the end of the epidemic to rapidly identify people carrying the virus. This would help prevent the re-emergence of the disease after we have brought the present epidemic under control.”

Source : The Mind Unleashed

Salmon Ramen

Ingredients

4 cups fish or vegetable stock
1 large garlic clove
1/2 tsp light soy sauce
4 salmon fillets, 5 oz each, skinned
peanut or corn oil, for broiling
5 oz dried ramen
generous 2 cups baby spinach leaves
4 scallions, chopped
2/3 cup bean sprouts
1 fresh green chili, seeded and sliced
fresh cilantro leaves

Teruyaki Glaze

2-1/2 tbsp sake
2-1/2 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp mirin or sweet sherry
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 garlic clove, very finely chopped
1/4-inch piece fresh gingerroot, peeled and very finely chopped

Method

  1. Heat the broiler to high, bring the stock to a boil with the garlic clove and soy sauce in one pan, and bring another pan of water to a boil for cooking the noodles.
  2. Mix the ingredients for the glaze together and brush one surface of each salmon fillet with the glaze.
  3. Lightly brush the broiler rack with oil and broil the salmon fillets for 4 minutes on one side only. The flesh should flake easily and the center should remain a bright pink. Remove from the broiler and set aside.
  4. Boil the noodles for 3 minutes, until soft. Alternatively, cook according to the package instructions. Drain and rinse.
  5. Remove the garlic from the stock, then bring the stock back to a boil. Drop in the spinach leaves and scallions and let them boil until the leaves are just wilted. Use a slotted spoon to remove the spinach and scallions and divide them between 4 large bowls.
  6. Divide the noodles between the bowls, then add a salmon fillet to each. Carefully pour the boiling stock into each bowl. Sprinkle with bean sprouts, chili slices, and cilantro leaves before serving.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Noodles

In Pictures: Food of Jade Dragon (譽瓏軒) in Macau

Modern Chinese Cuisine

The Michelin 3-star Restaurant

CDC Adds 6 Symptoms to Its COVID-19 List

Scott Neuman wrote . . . . . . . . .

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has added several new symptoms to its existing list of symptoms for COVID-19.

The CDC has long said that fever, cough and shortness of breath are indications that someone might have the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. It has now added six more conditions that may come with the disease: chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat and new loss of taste or smell.

The expanded symptoms list could prove important because with a limited number of test kits available, typically those seeking a test must first show symptoms.

There is anecdotal evidence for some of those newly listed symptoms. NPR and other news outlets reported last month that loss of smell and taste were reported by some people with COVID-19. Patients with the disease caused by the coronavirus have also reported muscle pain, chills and headache.

The symptoms usually appear within two to 14 days after exposure to the virus, the CDC says. It stresses the “emergency warning signs” for COVID-19 are trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, confusion or inability to arouse. and bluish lips or face. People with any of these symptoms should seek medical attention immediately, the CDC says.

The coronavirus has proved highly contagious and potentially deadly, but the vast majority of people who become infected will show either no symptoms or only mild ones. The U.S., which has the highest number of confirmed cases in the world, is poised to cross the 1 million mark in coming days, with the number of deaths from the disease surpassing the annual death toll for pneumonia and flu, according to the CDC.

Source: npr

Study: Eating Mostly Processed Meats, Starches and Sugary Snack May Lead to Dementia

Steven Reinberg wrote . . . . . . . . .

“How foods are consumed, not only the quantity consumed, may be important for dementia prevention,” said lead researcher Cecilia Samieri, a senior researcher in epidemiology at the University of Bordeaux in France.

In other words, it’s the total combination of foods, or “network,” that may be damaging, she and her team discovered.

Dementia was more common among folks who ate mostly processed meats like ham and sausages, starches like potatoes, and snacks such as cookies and cakes. People without dementia were more likely to eat a diverse diet that included fruits, vegetables, seafood and poultry, according to the findings.

This study, however, can’t prove that these foods cause dementia or that healthier foods prevent it, said Keith Fargo, director of scientific programs and outreach at the Alzheimer’s Association.

Still, Fargo noted that dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, can start developing decades before any symptoms appear, and long-term diet factors may play a role.

“Worse eating habits toward charcuterie and snacking were evident years before dementia diagnosis in our cohort. In contrast, diverse and healthy diets appear to decrease the risk to develop dementia,” Samieri said. Charcuterie includes bacon, ham, sausages and salami.

For the study, Samieri and her colleagues looked at 209 people with dementia and 418 without it in France. Participants were an average of 78 years old and followed for 12 years. They had completed a food questionnaire five years earlier.

Years before the diagnosis, those who developed dementia during the study had a diet very different from those who did not develop dementia, Samieri said.

In people with dementia, highly processed meats, such as sausages, cured meats and paté, formed the “hub” of their diet. These meats were mostly eaten in combination with potatoes, alcohol and sweet snacks, Samieri said.

Moreover, it wasn’t the amount of these foods that seemed to increase the risk for dementia, but rather not eating other healthier foods, she said.

Other studies have found that a diet rich in green leafy vegetables, berries, nuts, whole grains and fish may lower the risk of dementia, Samieri said.

It’s not possible to tell from this study what it is about certain foods that might raise the risk for dementia, she said.

It may be that they’re close to the so-called Western diet that has been linked with heart disease, obesity and diabetes, but that’s only a guess, Samieri noted.

It’s also possible that the frequency of eating unhealthy foods, rather than the quantity, is important in the risk for dementia, she said.

“These findings suggest that promoting a diverse and healthy diet rather than diets centered on processed meats and unhealthy foods could lower the risk to develop dementia, although this deserves confirmation in a randomized controlled trial,” Samieri said.

Fargo said that no one nutrient or kind of food needs to be eliminated from the diet to protect people from dementia.

“It’s really more about the universe of foods that you’re eating, it’s not about one particular food,” he said.

Fargo said having a cheeseburger once in a while probably won’t hurt you, but they shouldn’t be the mainstay of your diet. Skip the fries and cola as the combination may be even unhealthier, he noted.

“Be thoughtful about your dietary intake,” Fargo said. “It’s not about making sure you’re getting one particular nutrient or cutting out one particular kind of food. It’s more about a healthy approach to eating in general, and making sure you’re getting a broad variety and nutritious foods.”

The study was funded by the Alzheimer’s Association and published online in the journal Neurology.

Source: HealthDay


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