The study of diseases, including their causes and effects.

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19
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2answers
637 views

Why is rabies incurable?

I'm still not sure about the mechanics that lead to rabies being incurable. I know that it can be treated before any symptoms show up, but why is it that once symptoms show the person is a dead man ...
15
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2answers
2k views

Harmless virus?

Is it possible for a virus to live symbiotically with its host? Is the human body plagued with viral infections that do negligible harm, or even serve a beneficial role?
15
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4answers
902 views

Why does the cold make us sick?

From the moment we learn to communicate, we always get told, whether by our parents, or our teachers, or by anyone else, to avoid the cold, or to put a jacket on to avoid catching a cold, to dry our ...
13
votes
3answers
278 views

Can plants get cancer?

I can't think of any reason why plants wouldn't be able to get cancer, but I've never heard of a plant growing a tumor. I've also never seen a plant with a noticeable abnormal growth. Can plants get ...
13
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1answer
210 views

How does herpes (HSV) infection suppress HIV?

HIV compromises the human body to defend against infection. Yet people who are infected with herpes are at less risk of developing AIDS. How does this work?
12
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1answer
1k views

Do we actually get more sick (flu/cold) during winter?

The word flu derives from the Italian phrase "influenza de freddo" meaning "influence of the cold". Indeed it is that time of the year when my colleagues seem to have the flu/cold more often than ...
9
votes
1answer
116 views

Have there been any positive public health effects due to UV lights?

Occasionally, in hospitals and in eating establishments in the US, they have industrial grade UV lights in sconces attached to the wall (though they seem to be less prominent as the years go by). I ...
8
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3answers
1k views

Why is the current Ebola outbreak different from previous outbreaks?

I don't know if this question has an answer at this time, but I would like to know if there is some biological reason why the current Ebola outbreak is so much more complicated and widespread than in ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the life cycle of a wart?

There doesn't seem to be a lot of information available on research done on warts. What is the life cycle of a wart? How does it spread? -- specifically how does it recruit cells to spread it? What ...
8
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1answer
215 views

Can a bacteriophage be used to treat bacterial diseases?

Some bacteriophages reproduce using the lytic cycle which ends with the destruction of the host bacterial cell. I was wondering if theoretically this could be used theraputically to treat bacterial ...
8
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2answers
1k views

Why would taking antibiotics increase stamina and energy?

I often hear that people who are taking antibiotics experience wild fluctuations between feeling full of energy and completely alert but soon after feeling impossibly fatigued and sick. Does this ...
8
votes
1answer
193 views

Why are some bodily fluids more of an infection risk than others?

Whilst on a recent refresher course it was highlighted that when considering risk of exposure to infection from bodily fluids we should be aware of two distinct risk levels: High Risk: Blood Semen ...
7
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4answers
135 views

Organisms as potential Bio-Weapons?

Question: Given that with genetic engineering we can customize organisms as bio-weapons. Which species have the most worrying potential to be weaponized for mass destruction? Background: ...
7
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3answers
233 views

What alternatives are there to the amyloid hypothesis?

Given the recent failure of the Bapi clinical trial, there is a lot of questions that have arised from he amyloid hypothesis. However, I can't really think of many other mechanisms that don't involved ...
7
votes
1answer
121 views

Pharmacologically, can tricyclic antidepressants have a side-effect profile similar to neuroleptics?

Torticollis (wryneck, cervical dystonia) is a neurologic movement disorder causing involuntary muscle spasms in the neck. Often, neuroleptics can cause such a side effect. I'm wondering if this ...
7
votes
1answer
230 views

Mechanism of syndesmophyte growth in AS

Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) causes inflammation around joints and the growth of syndesmophytes that may eventually fuse vertebrae. I'm familiar with the genetics (HLA-B27, IL1A) related to the ...
6
votes
2answers
634 views

Do animals get sick from eating dirty food or eating off the floor?

Humans have very strict tradition of hygiene, such as washing hands before eating, using utensils, and in general keeping as much distance between food and dirt as possible. At the same time, most ...
6
votes
1answer
58 views

On the effect of polluted air on health. Is it more gradual, or more immediate?

I've heard time and again that living in São Paulo (a large city in Brasil) takes 1.5 years from your life expectancy. The allegation is that this happens because of air pollution. I am just ...
6
votes
1answer
190 views

Is there a detectable amount of bacterial DNA in the blood of infected persons?

With which bacterial infection in humans has it been shown that bacterial DNA can be found in the blood? If any is found it is likely not to be very much, and even difficult to distinguish from ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Reasons why people say that AIDS/HIV doesn't exist

It's been recurrent when I hear people saying that AIDS doesn't exist. When I ask why, they give weird reasons like HIV is a virus created to control economy and to develop medicine, etc. Also when I ...
5
votes
1answer
97 views

Can cirrhosis be caused by physical compression of the body?

On a random forum, a member speculated that their cirrhosis was caused by wearing tight-fitting clothing such as a girdle or corset. This leads me to the following question: Question: Can ...
5
votes
1answer
88 views

Could murder be modeled as an infectious disease?

Background "When swine flu hit the population it spiked in certain areas and tapered off in neighboring regions, it hits hardest where people have least protection and this pattern is more ...
5
votes
2answers
57 views

Standard Classification of Disease

I am working on a project for health center. It involves the creation of a database of all diseases. Currently I want to classify disease on the base of their category based on international standard. ...
5
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2answers
57 views

Are there any pathogenic archaeans?

Most textbooks seems to restrict pathogens to the domains bacteria and eukarya. Are there any pathogenic archaeans?
5
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1answer
112 views

Why is there no cure for Dandruff?

It looks like a simple problem, affecting almost half of the population at the post-pubertal age and of any gender and ethnicity [wikipedia]. What is so complex about finding a cure? Also, if you know ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Why are antibiotics prescribed with a viral infection like a cold?

I've heard both ways; people going to the doctor for a cold and then getting a prescription for antibiotics and those that go to the doctor and told they have ride it out because it's a viral ...
5
votes
1answer
60 views

Diabetes-diabetes comorbidity

Is it possible to have both type-1 (insulin-dependent) and type-2 (non-insulin-dependent) diabetes mellitus? That is, to have both insulin resistance and zero (or negligible) insulin production? If ...
5
votes
1answer
48 views

Can paper/plastic currency serve as a medium for pathogens?

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/15/health/15real.html seems to indicate for a surface, to serve as a medium, the following properties are relevant animation humidity temperature The article ...
5
votes
1answer
120 views

What evidence gives clues to the physiological basis for conversion disorder?

Conversion disorder has a set of DSM diagnosis criteria, which, among other things, includes ruling out all neurological disease. However, as the media has shown us (and one could argue a biased ...
5
votes
2answers
75 views

Improving myopia

I have a friend who no longer needs glasses. He previously had myopia in both eyes but over the years it has improved until he no longer needs glasses clinically. He's had glasses for over 30 years ...
4
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2answers
62 views

Transmission of disease from mother to fetus

Can parasite, microbes be passed from mother to fetus through the placenta ? I know some like HIV can be.
4
votes
2answers
73 views

What are some of the immediate challenges to break through before finding a cure for mad cow disease?

What are the immediate challenges to break through in seeking a cure for mad cow disease? I know that mad cow disease has no treatment as of yet.
4
votes
1answer
143 views

Inheritance of Huntington's disease

People with Huntington's disease have HTT genes with more than 37 copies of CAG repeat. The risk of extra copies being generated is higher during sperm formation than during ovum formation. Why is it ...
4
votes
1answer
103 views

Does culling badgers restrict the spread of bovine tuberculosis?

The British government has announced that it plans a large-scale badger cull which they argue are implicated in the spread of Mycobacterium bovis - so-called bovine tuberculosis. Any cattle that ...
4
votes
2answers
420 views

Does making yogurt from non-pasteurized milk work against possible disease bacteria?

In the past, when there was no pasteurization, could making yogurt from milk lower the chance of getting infected by bovine tuberculosis (or other diseases from infected milk)? For example, would ...
4
votes
1answer
36 views

Why is the ebola virus so intense now?

So i'm looking into the ebola crisis and it seems the death toll is really getting crazy. I understand that it's a cytomegalovirus and that it basically overwhelms the immune system due to it's size ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

Is there a correlation between incidence of type 1 diabetes and vitiligo?

Does the data indicate that if you have one, the probability of you having the other is higher than that of someone who doesn't have the one?
3
votes
2answers
163 views

Standard Process Identification of New Disease outbreak Causing Pathogen

Is the any standard procedure or protocol followed for the identification of cause of new disease outbreak(or new pathogen)? Is it different for different countries?
3
votes
2answers
164 views

By what mechanism does coeliac disease cause excess fat in the feces?

Wikipedia states that “Severe coeliac disease leads to the characteristic symptoms of pale, loose and greasy stool (steatorrhoea)”. However thumbing through the causes and the pathophysiology it did ...
3
votes
1answer
66 views

Do people with gout live longer?

Antioxidants reduce damage to tissue (by scavenging the free radicals) and thus may reduce ageing.It is known that Uric acid is a very good antioxidant. People with gout have excess accumulation of ...
3
votes
1answer
35 views

What is the reason behind more severe proteinuria in nephrotic syndrome than in nephritic syndrome?

Why is there less protein loss via urine in case of nephritic syndrome than in case of nephrotic syndrome?
3
votes
1answer
104 views

Why basement membrane thickens in diabetes mellitus?

Untreated diabetes mellitus may lead to blindness and kidney failure because the basement membrane of small blood vessels in these organs thickens due to increased production of collagen and laminin. ...
3
votes
2answers
234 views

How was the Huntington's disease gene's location found?

I read in the book "Why we get sick." by Nesse and Williams that: Steady detective work and fabulous luck have enabled geneticists to pinpoint the Huntington's gene on the short arm of ...
3
votes
1answer
56 views

What is the cause of the spots on this leaf?

On a hiking trip to the Alps I found trees whose leaves showed those spots you see on the picture. I am curious about what the cause is. Higher resolution pictures of front and back side.
3
votes
1answer
97 views

Is it harmful for someone to consume things full of bacteria if they don't get physically sick from the bacteria at all?

Or as another example - what if you touch a surface that's contaminated with potentially pathogenic bacteria (like the ones at ...
3
votes
1answer
75 views

Is ebola non-contagious until symptoms appear? Why?

There's been a lot of talk lately about the man who recently came down with ebola in Dallas, Texas. While I live elsewhere, I keep hearing quotes from CDC and state officials that ebola is not ...
3
votes
1answer
41 views

How many times can a human get chicken pox?

How many times can a human get chicken pox? For example: I got chicken pox, and recovered. If I was infected with HIV, and I am exposed to chicken pox again, can it infect me second time?, According ...
3
votes
1answer
43 views

Why do we feel cold on having fever?

Why do we feel terribly cold on catching fever of any sort, however our body becomes hotter? Why is it that a rise in temperature makes the sufferer feel colder? Also, sweating symbolises betterment ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

How do liver and lung metastases cause death?

Metastasis to the liver and lungs are the main causes of death in colorectal cancer.(1) I understand that colorectal cancer may have metastases. But how do these metastases cause death? Reference ...
3
votes
1answer
67 views

how can a pseudo coelomate like ascaris lay 200k eggs in a single day

as per this site the dimensions of eggs of ascaris lumbricoides are 78-105 microns and as it is shown in the pic down here only half of the body cavity would be used for storage of all the stages of ...