University of Nebraska Medical Center


Timely and relevant global health security news curated by GCHS

Featured Headlines

  • Covid-19 testing to no longer be recommended for vast majority of people
    Irish Times Covid numbers in hospital more than double as fresh wave starts. Testing for Covid-19 will no longer be recommended for the vast majority of people from next Thursday, the HSE has announced. People with Covid-19 or other respiratory virus symptoms should stay at home until 48 hours after their symptoms have substantially or […]
  • Burundi: Mysterious disease with symptoms resembling those of the Ebola virus appears
    Burundi News (Machine Translated) An as yet unidentified disease killed three people in three days in the commune of Gitobe in the province of Kirundo and in the commune of Butihinda in the province of Muyinga (north-eastern Burundi). Symptoms developed by patients suffering from this disease resemble those of Ebola hemorrhagic virus or Marburg virus disease. In […]
  • Equatorial Guinea, Africa – Marburg Virus Disease Emergency Appeal
    ReliefWeb Download PDF Report SITUATION OVERVIEW The Ministry of Health of Equatorial Guinea received reports of a cluster of deaths due to an unknown illness in two north-eastern districts of the continental region of Equatorial Guinea (Nsok-Nsomo and Ebebiyin). A total of nine people died from January 7 to February 6 with symptoms similar to […]
  • Dr. Lawler’s Weekly Update
    This week Dr. Lawler provides us with updates of COVID-19 data from the U.K., and discusses the concerns of the low level of COVID testing. “We [the U.S.] are now testing at a level that is similar to April 2020.” Watch the video here: https://bit.ly/3FZIiaO
  • Marburg virus disease – United Republic of Tanzania
    WHO Situation at a glance On 21 March 2023, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of the United Republic of Tanzania declared an outbreak of Marburg virus disease (MVD) in the country. As of 22 March, a total of eight cases, including five deaths (case fatality ratio [CFR]: 62.5%) have been reported from two villages in […]
  • Bird Flu Outbreak at New York’s Sole Supplier of Pheasants 
    The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is investigating an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza at a game farm in Ithaca. The Cornell Wildlife Health Lab conducted testing and confirmed positive results which now places the Reynolds Game Farm under quarantine for 120 days. According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, 500 of the 6,600 […]
  • UK: Dolphin found dead on beach was infected with avian flu
    Tivy The adult female dolphin was discovered on Newgale beach last month. Tests have shown that the creature – who died from other causes – was carrying the avian flu strain. In recent weeks, a dolphin in Dorset and a harbour porpoise in Yorkshire have also been found to be infected with the virus, which […]
  • What Is Marburg? What You Need To Know About The Killer Ebola-Like Virus Spreading In Parts Of Africa
    Forbes The World Health Organization has urged African health authorities to be vigilant to the spread of the deadly Marburg virus, following reports of a new outbreak in Tanzania and a slew of new cases in Equatorial Guinea, as experts in multiple countries scramble to contain the highly infectious Ebola-like disease for which there is […]
  • Marburg virus disease – Equatorial Guinea
    WHO Situation at a glance Since the first Disease Outbreak News on this event was published on 25 February 2023,  eight additional laboratory-confirmed cases of Marburg virus disease (MVD) have been reported in Equatorial Guinea. This brings the total to nine laboratory-confirmed cases and 20 probable cases since the declaration of the outbreak in February 2023. There […]

More Featured Headlines

Emerging Infectious Disease Headlines

  • A Carson County skunk is Texas’ first mammal positive for avian flu
    Lubbock County Journal A highly contagious virus that began with widespread outbreaks among poultry in factory farms took little time to cross over to wild bird species and then trickle into mammals. More commonly known as the bird flu, the highly pathogenic avian influenza continues to leave its impact on livestock and wildlife around the […]
  • California: Avian Influenza Detected In Deceased Mountain Lions
    California Department of Fish and Wildlife The Eurasian strain of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI H5N1) was detected in two mountain lions in Mono County in December 2022 and January 2023, according to wildlife health experts with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). While additional disease testing is being conducted to rule out […]
  • Bird Flu Outbreak at New York’s Sole Supplier of Pheasants 
    The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is investigating an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza at a game farm in Ithaca. The Cornell Wildlife Health Lab conducted testing and confirmed positive results which now places the Reynolds Game Farm under quarantine for 120 days. According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, 500 of the 6,600 […]
  • UK: Dolphin found dead on beach was infected with avian flu
    Tivy The adult female dolphin was discovered on Newgale beach last month. Tests have shown that the creature – who died from other causes – was carrying the avian flu strain. In recent weeks, a dolphin in Dorset and a harbour porpoise in Yorkshire have also been found to be infected with the virus, which […]
  • Foxes in Germany test positive for H5N1 bird flu
    BNO news Four foxes in Germany have tested positive for H5N1 bird flu, local officials say, just weeks after red foxes in France succumbed to the same illness, which is affecting a growing number of mammals. The four foxes all died in Lower Saxony, a state in northwest Germany. Two were found dead in the […]
  • COVID-origins study links raccoon dogs to Wuhan market: what scientists think
    Nature Some scientists say the analysis provides new evidence supporting the hypothesis that the virus that causes COVID-19 spilled over from an animal — but falls short of definitive proof. Raccoon dogs, bamboo rats, palm civets: these are just some of the animals whose DNA has been found in swabs taken from the Huanan Seafood […]
  • First birds, now mammals: how H5N1 is killing thousands of sea lions in Peru
    Guardian Avian flu has decimated the marine creatures on the country’s Pacific coastline and scientists fear it could be jumping from mammal to mammal. t first, it appears to be dead. Its head lies in the sand, and a small tide pool has formed around it. Its shoulder blades jut out and its coffee and […]
  • Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza A(H5N1) Virus in a Harbor Porpoise, Sweden
    CDC We found highly pathogenic avian influenza A(H5N1) virus clade associated with meningoencephalitis in a stranded harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). The virus was closely related to strains responsible for a concurrent avian influenza outbreak in wild birds. This case highlights the potential risk for virus spillover to mammalian hosts. Europe and, more recently, North […]
  • First Texas Case of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Detected in Mammals
    Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife The National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) confirmed this week the presence of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in a striped skunk recovered from Carson County. This is the first confirmed case of HPAI in mammals for Texas. Detected in all states across the U.S. except Hawaii, HPAI is a […]
  • Bird flu may be making foxes and other animals behave in unusual ways
    (New Scientist) Analysis of wild mammals infected with H5N1 bird flu in the US found that many had brain infections and neurological symptoms, including lack of fear of people. Bird flu is infecting the brains of wild mammals such as foxes and raccoons and may be making them behave in unusual ways, according to a […]

More EID Headlines

Unofficial HPAI H5N1 Map

Data sourced from FAO, USDA APHIS, WAHIS and open source media reports. Updated Weekly.

Science and Tech

  • Can you catch a hidden virus from a dog kiss or a cat cuddle?
    NPR “Get ready for a silly question,” one reader wrote in response to our series on “hidden viruses” that jump from animals to people. “I love my pups very much – and I think they love me too because I get lots of kisses. Is that bad from a spillover virus perspective – for me […]
  • Metformin found to reduce Long Covid in clinical trial
    Inside Medicine A study posted on a preprint server operated by the medical journal The Lancet reports that Long Covid diagnoses were found to be lower in patients who received metformin (an inexpensive diabetes drug) compared to those who received placebo. The study has not yet been peer reviewed. Still, the findings are promising. Around 10.6% (1 in 9) […]
  • Lion infected with covid-19 probably passed it on to two zoo workers
    New Scientist A lion at Potawatomi Zoo in South Bend, Indiana, tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus after it started coughing and became breathless. Zoo workers who had cared for the lion later caught the infection. A lion that was infected with the coronavirus probably passed it on to two zoo employees, researchers have said […]
  • Paxlovid slashed severe outcomes for at-risk patients after Omicron surge, study finds
    (MSN) Canadians at risk of severe illness from COVID-19 who took the antiviral medication Paxlovid significantly reduced their likelihood of being hospitalized or killed by the virus after the Omicron surge, according to new research published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. The study, which looked at data from thousands of Ontarians, wanted to measure the effectiveness […]

Vaccine Headlines

  • mRNA vaccine beats infection for key defense against COVID-19, Stanford Medicine scientists find
    (Stanford Medicine) Stanford Medicine researchers have shown that prior SARS-CoV-2 infection reduces killer T cells’ response to vaccination. These cells are crucial for eliminating the virus from the body. The Pfizer/BioNTech mRNA vaccine directed at COVID-19 is much better than natural infection at revving up key immune cells called killer T cells to fight future […]
  • Building Vaccine Trust Among the General Public
    Med News Today No longer “a single transcendent reference point for decision-making,” says Gregory Poland, MD Vaccine hesitancy and refusal to be vaccinated are major reasons mass vaccination strategies do not reach the intended coverage, even if adequate vaccine supply has been achieved. Public perceptions of vaccines are critical in reaching protective levels of herd […]
  • Do We Need a Spring COVID-19 Booster?
    MedPageToday It’s been close to 6 months since the initial rollout of the fall (bivalent) booster. A lot of people are wondering: Do I need a spring booster? The answer hinges on more questions: What is the purpose of vaccines? Does that purpose change depending on age or health status? The Purpose of the COVID Vaccines Last […]

Misinformation, Disinformation, Propaganda, and Conspiracy Theories

  • To Understand Anti-vaxxers, Consider Aristotle
    The Atlantic Among the many difficulties imposed upon America by the pandemic, the scourge of anti-vaccine sentiment—and the preventable deaths caused as result—ranks among the most frustrating, especially for infectious-disease doctors like me. People who are hospitalized with COVID-19 rarely refuse therapy, but acceptance of vaccines to help prevent infection has been considerably more limited. Seventy percent […]
  • My 6-Year-Old Son Died. Then the Anti-vaxxers Found Out.
    The Atlantic Opponents of COVID vaccines terrorize grieving families on social media. My 6-year-old boy died in January. We lost him after a household accident, one likely brought on by a rare cerebral-swelling condition. Paramedics got his heart beating, but it was too late to save his brain. I could hold his hand, look at the […]
  • 5G Vaccines

Clinical Considerations

  • Paxlovid Linked to Lower Risk of Long COVID
    Contagion Live Treating COVID-19 with Paxlovid, a combination of nirmatrelvir with ritonavir, within 5 days of symptom onset was associated with lower risk for developing Post-COVID-19 Conditions (PCC), or Long COVID, in a large Veterans Affairs (VA) cohort study. In addition to reducing risk of mild to moderate infection becoming severe, and of severe symptoms requiring […]
  • Study finds co-infection with ‘superbug’ bacteria increases SARS-CoV-2 replication
    Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry Global data shows nearly 10 per cent of severe COVID-19 cases involve a secondary bacterial co-infection – with Staphylococcus aureus, also known as Staph A., being the most common organism responsible for co-existing infections with SARS-CoV-2. Researchers at Western have found if you add a ‘superbug’ – methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus […]
  • Nirmatrelvir-Ritonavir Effective Against Omicron BA.4, BA.5 SARS-CoV-2 Variant
    Pulmonology Advisor Real-world evidence from the Omicron period of the COVID-19 pandemic shows the benefit of nirmatrelvir-ritonavir for vaccinated outpatients and those younger than 65 years of age with non-severe COVID-19 at high risk of hospitalization or death, according to study findings published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases. Investigators sought to examine the real-world effect of […]
  • SARS-CoV-2 infection weakens immune-cell response to vaccination
    NIH NIH-funded study suggests need to boost CD8+ T cell response after infection. The magnitude and quality of a key immune cell’s response to vaccination with two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine were considerably lower in people with prior SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to people without prior infection, a study has found. In addition, the […]
  • Persistent prosopagnosia following COVID-19
    (Science Direct) Abstract COVID-19 can cause psychological problems including loss of smell and taste, long-lasting memory, speech, and language impairments, and psychosis. Here, we provide the first report of prosopagnosia following symptoms consistent with COVID-19. Annie is a 28-year-old woman who had normal face recognition prior to contracting COVID-19 in March 2020. Two months later, […]


  • NIH funds eight studies to advance rapid diagnosis of COVID-19-related inflammatory syndrome in children
    (LabPulse) The National Institutes of Health on Monday said it has awarded eight research grants to refine new technologies for early diagnosis of severe illnesses resulting from SARS-CoV-2 infection in children. The new awards follow grants issued in 2020 to foster methods for diagnosing children at high risk for multisystem inflammatory syndrome MIS-C) — a rare, severe, […]
  • 11 Rapid At-Home Covid-19 Tests—and Where to Find Them
    (Wired) The pandemic isn’t over. Regardless of how small your circle is, it’s still very possible to contract and spread Covid-19. To help prevent this, it’s important to get tested regularly (along with getting vaccinated and wearing an N95 face mask). There are free testing sites across the country, but those pressed for time can trade in the long lines for […]

Psychological and Sociological Impact of the Pandemic

  • End of Covid Emergency Will Usher in Changes Across the US Health System
    KHN The Biden administration’s decision to end the covid-19 public health emergency in May will institute sweeping changes across the health care system that go far beyond many people having to pay more for covid tests. In response to the pandemic, the federal government in 2020 suspended many of its rules on how care is delivered. That […]
  • Science of forgetting: Why we’re already losing our pandemic memories
    Washington Post Because of information overload and the monotony of pandemic life, your brain may already be forgetting parts of the covid years. How much do you remember about the past three years of pandemic life? How much have you already forgotten? A lot has happened since the “Before Times.” Canceled proms, toilet paper shortages, nightly applause […]
  • House votes unanimously to declassify U.S. intelligence on covid origins
    Washington Post In a rare show of bipartisanship near the third anniversary of the pandemic, the House voted unanimously Friday to declassify all U.S. intelligence information on the origins of the coronavirus. The 419-0 vote in favor of the bill, which passed the Senate by unanimous consent last week,sends it to President Biden’s desk. If the bill […]
  • Is the COVID-19 pandemic over? Here’s why the answer is political, social, scientific, and complex
    Fast Company The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic three years ago today, but experts disagree about how and when pandemics end. It’s been three years since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. So we know when the pandemic officially began. But what must happen for it to officially end? Who even makes the […]

Interesting and Sometimes Funny

  • New Staff for 2023
    When I’m not researching and curating content for UNMC, I’m a flower farmer! Farming was never in the plans, it just sort of happened, and my husband and I couldn’t be more thrilled. We have 65 acres of a former tobacco farm, and the soil is a depleted dust bowl from over 350 years of […]