This talk may be of interest to learners who enjoyed ‘The Anglo-Saxons’ course.
Old remedies can sometimes be surprisingly effective. A one thousand year old Anglo-Saxon remedy for eye infections which originates from a manuscript in the British Library has been found to kill the modern-day superbug MRSA in an unusual research collaboration at The University of Nottingham described in this video clip.
If you wish to find out more about health and medicine in the Anglo-Saxon period, the following links may also be useful:
The bubonic plague, which killed around 1/5 of the world’s population in the 14th century, is still around today — but it now claims only a few thousand lives each year. How did that number shrink so drastically? In this TED-Ed Original Sharon N. DeWitte investigates the causes and effects of the black death and explains how knowing this information can help us prepare for any future outbreaks of the disease.
Those of you who have taken the ‘Black Death’ course may be interested in this post. In our last session of that course, you may recall we looked at the modern situation and this is a nice summary of a recent study in Madagascar.
Madagascar is consistently one of the top two countries in Africa (and usually the world) in cases of plague, caused by Yersinia pestis. For five years prior to January 2013, Madagascar registered 312 to 648 cases per year, with a majority being laboratory confirmed of which >80% were bubonic plague. Of the multiple reservoir species in Madagascar, the black rat (Rattus rattus) is the primary reservoir with Xenopsylla choepus being the main urban vector and Synopsyllus fonquerniei in rural areas.
After a nine case bubonic outbreak in the rural area of Soavina in the district of Ambatofinandrana (shown below), fleas were collected within and outside of five houses over three nights.
The team from the Institut Pasteur de Madagascar collected 319 fleas representing five genera; the most common being the human flea Pulex irritans (73.3%). In this study, X. cheopis and S. fonquerniei were only collected outside of…
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