HEALTH AND SCIENCE HIGHLIGHTS

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June 14, 2021 (San Diego's East County) -- Our Health and Science Highlights provide cutting edge news that could impact your health and our future.

HEALTH

SCIENCE & TECH

For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.

HEALTH

Organ transplant patients may benefit from third Covid-19 vaccine dose to boost antibodies, study suggests (CNN)

A third dose of coronavirus vaccine could help boost antibody levels among some organ transplant recipients who have not had robust responses to the standard vaccination schedules, a new study suggests.

Doctors using 3D printers to help babies with spina bifida who haven't even been born yet (10 News)

Doctors at a hospital in Orlando say 3D printing technology is helping them fix congenital disabilities in babies that haven't even been born yet.  The new technology allows doctors to print a life-size model of the fetus they plan to operate on, giving them a new way to plan ahead of surgery.

Just 12 People Are Behind Most Vaccine Hoaxes On Social Media, Research Shows (NPR)

Researchers have found just 12 people are responsible for the bulk of the misleading claims and outright lies about COVID-19 vaccines that proliferate on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter…. Many of the 12, he said, have been spreading scientifically disproven medical claims and conspiracies for years. Which provokes the question: Why have social media platforms only recently begun cracking down on their falsehoods?

CDC probes rare cases of heart inflammation in vaccinated teens, young adults (Washington Post)

Vaccine safety experts are studying a small number of cases of heart muscle inflammation that have been reported in multiple countries among young people who had recently received their second dose of one of the coronavirus vaccines. … Investigators have not established that the condition, known as myocarditis, was caused by the shots. Most cases have been mild, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which continues to strongly urge people to get vaccinated.

Sackler Family Empire Poised To Win Immunity From Opioid Lawsuits (NPR)

After more than a year of high stakes negotiations with billions of dollars on the line, a bankruptcy plan for Purdue Pharma, the maker of Oxycontin, cleared a major hurdle late Wednesday. Federal Judge Robert Drain in White Plains, N.Y., moved the controversial deal forward despite objections from dozens of state attorneys general, setting the stage for a final vote by the company's creditors expected this summer.

Syria Bombs Hospitals. Now It Will Help Lead The World Health Organization (NPR)

… In a decision that appalled and angered Syrian opposition groups and international medical organizations, on May 28 Syria was appointed to the World Health Organization's Executive Board, made up of 34 member states. Representatives of these countries hold three-year terms in which they set the agenda for the WHO Health Assembly and help implement WHO policies.

SCIENCE & TECH

What causes the Northern Lights? Scientists now know for sure (NPR)

…An article published in the journal Nature Communications this week suggests that the natural light show starts when disturbances on the sun pull on Earth's magnetic field. That creates cosmic undulations known as Alfvén waves that launch electrons at high speeds into Earth's atmosphere where they create the aurora.

Major internet outage impacts websites and apps around the world (CNN)

Cloudly file service failure causes major internet outage.

Tiny creature comes back to life after 24,000 years in Siberian deep freeze (Reuters)

A microscopic organism has wriggled back to life and reproduced asexually after lying frozen in the vast permafrost lands of northeastern Siberia for 24,000 years.

Trump’s blog failed, bigly. His next online venture won’t be any easier. (Politico)

Twenty-nine days after it was launched, Donald Trump’s blog, once hailed by fans as his triumphant return to the internet, was taken down on Wednesday. …Publicly, Trump’s team described the decision to remove the “From the Desk of Donald J. Trump” site as part of the process towards building a larger online footprint. But privately, aides conceded that the site was proving to be more of a nuisance than a bullhorn.

Should the police have facial recognition tech?  (QZ)

This week, King county, Washington, became the first county in the US to ban its sheriff’s office and other agencies from using facial recognition technology in nearly all circumstances.... / In the absence of any federal privacy regulation, some states and localities are taking action on the matter. King county joins more than a dozen cities, including San Francisco and Boston, and the state of Vermont, which have already banned police and other agencies from using facial recognition. Experts expect more to join the list.

Tech giants and tax havens targeted by historic G7 deal (Reuters)



The United States, Britain and other large, rich nations reached a landmark deal on Saturday to squeeze more money out of multinational companies such as Amazon and Google and reduce their incentive to shift profits to low-tax offshore havens.

National Geographic Adds 5th Ocean to World Map (NBC San Diego)

National Geographic announced it was recognizing the body of water encircling the Antarctic as the Earth's fifth ocean: the Southern Ocean