Contagions Round-up 21: From Old Tombs to New Viruses

Its been a while since I’ve done a round-up. Here are some of the posts that caught my attention in the last couple weeks. I am going to start restricting these round ups to topics more closely related to Contagions – history of medicine, bioarchaeology and infectious disease. I’m still reading all the rest and I will occasionally include something off topic.

Mia D’ Ambrigo of Notes from the Field brings us news of the possible discovery of the tomb of the last Inca emperor and she also looks at recent claims for the earliest Christian tomb in Jerusalem.

Rosemary Joyce of Ancient Bodies, Ancient Lives writes about new research on Mayan women.

Kristina Killgrove of Powered by Osteons writes about Roman reproductive votives.

Katy Meyers of Bones Don’t Lie looks at osteoporosis in ancient populations.

Lindsey Fitzharris wrote about syphilis and “syphilophobes” in early modern England on Wonders and Marvels.

Caroline Rance of The Quack Doctor brings us a cute lyrics to a folksong on quack medicines.

I’ve been writing here at Contagions about all different types of things: new ways to detect plague proteins with Immuno-PCR, what our long term immune response to plague looks like, archaeological evidence for malaria in Anglo-Saxon England, and the way plague historiography has shaped views of medieval history.

Michael Walsh of Infection Landscapes is working his way through the worms with posts on hookworm, and whipworm. With Otzi the Iceman’s metagenome in the news this week, I did have to wonder if any of the ‘other eurkaryote’ sequences found were worms.

Vincent Racaniello of The Virology Blog keeps us up to date with the H5N1 influenza controversy with posts on new estimates of human infections and new information on the controversial H5N1 ferret experiments.

Tara Smith of Aetiology wrote about a whole new family of influenza in bats and some of her work on the human origins of ‘pig’ Staph ST398. Maryn McKenna of Superbug writes more about the pig staph as well and more about resistant bacteria on meat.

Connor Bamford of Rule of 6ix writes about the interactions between prions and our immune system and  the new Schmallenberg virus causing epizootics in Europe; Maryn McKenna of Superbug first broke the story on the blogs with her round-up of information on the Schmallenburg virus.

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