Beyond Bird Flu: The Perfect Microbial Storm

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posted on Dec, 11 2006 @ 08:54 AM
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Originally posted by khunmoon

Originally posted by soficrow
But it will take time for us to come back in balance with our planet ...

IMO - it makes sense to stop changing the molecular basis of our environment. We simply cannot reproduce and adapt quickly enough to get ahead of the game - but microbes can.



...the microbes always win, that we know.




I don't see it as a war. At all.

IMO - microbes are the messengers that 'communicate' between the environment and complex living organisms - they also are the media that carry new molecules we put into the environment into other living cells. It's how 'Gaia' works - and it's all about achieving harmony and balance.

So in the larger scheme of things, microbes are our buddies. They make it physically possible for us to adapt to changes in our environment.

I am saying we need to slow down the rate of change. ...and also, that we DO have the power to pull it off.


.




posted on Dec, 13 2006 @ 12:21 PM
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The pandemic flu strain, which has not yet appeared, will likely be a mix of bird flu, anthrax, rabies, dengue fever, and/or whatever - "the perfect microbial storm."

Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota warns, "This is going to happen."

What remains unknown is when, exactly, "this" will happen and what, exactly, "this" will be - that is, what strain or microbial hybrid will emerge to cause a pandemic.

Even so says Osterholm, it is unacceptable for society to do nothing.



Pandemic inevitable; local planning and leadership critical, health expert says

...Michael Osterholm, an expert on public-health preparedness, offered a stark analysis of the threat of pandemic influenza. ..."This is going to happen." In a globalized, just-in-time economy with no surge capacity, local preparation and leadership will be critical to survival. "Community planning is not an option," he said. ..."If there is a silver lining to many of the terrorist events, when they happen we go into a recovery phase within minutes," Osterholm said. "They blow up and then they're done. That's a horrible thing, but it's tremendously advantageous. Imagine something that unfolds over a matter of months."

According to a September report issued by the World Health Organization, the H5N1 virus has a 65 percent mortality rate, compared to 2.5 percent for the 1918 virus. In the event of a pandemic, however, "this [rate] will probably attenuate because you will die before you can pass it on," Osterholm said. If a pandemic occurs in the near future, vaccines and antiviral medicines will have limited impact due to delays in developing effective drugs and limited manufacturing capacity. Steps such as quarantine and infection control also will have little effect, he said.

...Despite the grim forecast, Osterholm said it is unacceptable for society to do nothing. Even if a 1918-like scenario unfolds, most of the world's population will survive. "If local was ever important, it's important now," he said. "What happens in Palo Alto is going to be more important than what happens in the Bay Area. Business continuity planning is not optional—as goes business, so goes our society. If we can't get food, heating oil and medicines to our population, we are in trouble. Hope and despair are not strategies—that's a common place to go. We'll get through it, but, ultimately, it's going to depend on how we prepare and the leadership during that time."




The Vaccine Problem

Scientists warn that the five known H5N1 bird flu strains are different enough that each require their own vaccine. New vaccines will need to be developed for new strains as they evolve - including one for the feared yet-to-appear pandemic strain.

At the same time, the world's vaccine production capacity simply cannot and will not meet global requirements. The fallback position involves public education - with a focus on "simple hygiene" like frequent handwashing.



Vaccines for all H5N1 flu strains crucial -experts

The H5N1 bird flu virus has undergone many changes since making its first known jump into humans in 1997 and vaccines must be manufactured to fight its major strains, experts said on Monday. ..."What's worrying is there were more (human) cases in 2006 than 2004 and 2005. The problem is still with us," Robert Webster of the St Jude Children's Research Hospital in the United States told Reuters ...Webster said several H5N1 strains had become widespread and different enough to cause unease among experts, and no one would dare assume that any one vaccine would be able to protect against other H5N1 strains.

Derek Smith of Cambridge University in Britain said there have been at least five major changes to the H5N1 virus since it was first discovered in 1959. ...These five strains were found in Hong Kong in 1997, Vietnam in 2004, Eurasia-Africa in 2005-2006, Indonesia in 2005 and Anhui province in China in 2005. ..."It's not clear what is driving this antigenic evolution," Smith, research associate at Cambridge's zoology department, told the conference.

Several companies around the world are in a race to develop vaccines against the virus, although many experts think they might not confer protection against an eventual pandemic strain... ...In the event of a pandemic, there simply would not be vaccines or drugs for poorer nations. ...More time and resources should be spent instead on researching about, and promoting, simple hygiene measures "that might be beneficial to the majority of the world at very low cost", he said, citing the use of surgical masks, alcohol sprays and regular hand-washing.




What Can Be Done

The cities that fared best during the 1918 pandemic were the ones that "instituted "social distancing" at least two weeks before flu cases peaked in their communities." So says a new unpublished study being called "a Manhattan Project of history," where researchers reviewed health records, newspaper clippings and other documents from 45 cities about the 1918 pandemic.

"Social distancing" strategies "involve reducing contact with other people including closing schools and cancelling public gatherings; planning for liberal work leave policies and teleworking strategies; voluntary isolation of cases and voluntary quarantine of household contacts."


Study Shows What Helped During 1918 Flu

Government health officials tried to build their case for school closings and similar steps during a flu pandemic by showcasing new research Monday that suggests such measures seemed to work during the deadly Spanish flu of 1918. ...Researchers found that cities like St. Louis, which instituted "social distancing" at least two weeks before flu cases peaked in their communities, had flu-related death rates less than half that of Philadelphia, which didn't act until later.

The whirlwind historical research project ...involves a team of researchers from the University of Michigan and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who combed through health records, newspaper clippings and other documents from 45 cities. ..."This is a Manhattan Project of history," said Michigan's Dr. Howard Markel, one of the lead researchers, in a presentation at a pandemic flu planning meeting of health officials in Atlanta.

Another finding: The more social distancing measures were used and the longer they were in place, the less severe was the pandemic's effect on a particular city. Wearing masks in public, restricting door-to-door sales, canceling church and quarantining sick people were among the layers of measures that appeared beneficial. ...But the researchers acknowledged they've only just begun their analysis, and haven't teased out which measures were most effective. And they stopped short of saying those steps were the clear-cut reason some cities had lower death rates.

***

CDC Meeting Explores Community Strategies to Reduce Impact of Pandemic Influenza

The impact of pandemic influenza extends well beyond health and medical communities into many segments of society. Developing a pandemic influenza vaccine could take several months, and community prevention strategies are public health measures that don't involve vaccines or medications (also called non-pharmaceutical interventions) may serve as a first line of defense to help delay or reduce the spread of disease.

For pandemic influenza, examples include social distancing strategies that involve reducing contact with other people including closing schools and cancelling public gatherings; planning for liberal work leave policies and teleworking strategies; voluntary isolation of cases and voluntary quarantine of household contacts.




Tamiflu IS Better than Nothing

Virologist Menno de Jong, head of virology at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam was the first bird flu expert to question Tamiflu's effectiveness publicly. See: Report: Tamiflu "Useless" Against H5N1 Bird Flu, and More About Tamiflu.

Now, de Jong is telling doctors NOT to give up on patients with advanced bird flu, and to use whatever anti-virals they have available because they might help. Good advice, imo.



Don't give up on advanced human bird flu cases -expert

An expert who treated numerous bird flu victims in Vietnam has urged doctors not to lose hope with patients who are admitted late to hospital as there is still a good chance that they can survive. ..."If you can decrease the viral load (with drugs), you can have a good outcome. Even those who are treated late had good results," he told the conference.

...de Jong, head of virology at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, said Tamiflu could still be used to fight bird flu many days after the onset of symptoms because the avian virus would still be multiplying. ...De Jong agreed with many experts that an early start to treatment was still best ..."You have to get very effective treatment as early as possible because you will prevent direct viral damage (to lung and other tissues)," de Jong said.

...Early treatment could also prevent what is known as the "cytokine storm response", when a human's immune system launches such a heavy counter-attack that it destroys not only the invading avian flu virus, but the person's own surrounding tissues as well...





[edit on 13-12-2006 by soficrow]



posted on Dec, 13 2006 @ 10:09 PM
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Sofi, none have like you with expert quotes made the scenario of a coming pandemic, not just likely but a fact, where the only question remains is when.

And I'm afraid so too.

When it's there I think it will look much like a war. One which possibly can't be won, but contained only. Microbes still are the most succesful lifeform Creation has come up with.

That they are there to prevent us, "the highest lifeform", not to go berserk in our innovative and manipulative eager is obvious.

Someone have said: "Cancer is natures reaction to culture".

Replace 'cancer' with 'microbes taking over'.

It's all a natural thing.

Unless - as you also have suggested - they are deliberately engineered.

If so, still they've failed to create the microbe that looks in your wallet before it kills.


But someone somewhere among "the highest lifeform", are counting on a reduction of populations, so when this pandemic comes around, who will be treated, as the manufacture of vacine will be a race against time.

Those worth their wallet?



posted on Dec, 14 2006 @ 12:47 PM
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Thanks khunmoon. More on 'genetic engineering.'


The coming "perfect microbial storm" is a product of evolution.

Publicly accessible data on microbial evolution - and the "perfect microbial storm" - deals exclusively with natural organisms. However, chimeras and artificial man-made organisms add to the evolutionary mix, and their roles in the coming 'microbial storm' need to be considered.

Chimeras are artificial lifeforms with a mixture of two or more species in one body - genetically engineered by combining genes from different species. Aside from tomatoes with fish genes, our world now has a population of man-mice, man-pig, man-monkey and numerous other artificial hybrids. As the most dangerous diseases threatening mankind today are zoonoses, or animal diseases that can be transmitted to humans, the role(s) chimeras might play in the planet's current bio-dynamic cannot be dismissed.

Artificial organisms are micro-organisms - part natural, and part "machine" - created by using biotechnology, nanotechnology and computing technology, sometimes called nano-bio-bots. 1990's wisdom said that artificial organisms, and their impacts, were 50 to 100 years in the future. BUT - the main characteristics required for artificial organisms to evolve, and impact natural organisms and natural evolution, all have been announced publicly over the last few years. These characteristics include self-power, and self-assembly or self-replication.

I now am wondering what role chimeras and artificial organisms are playing in the hybridization and evolution of 'natural' organisms, and the threat of this coming "perfect microbial storm."


SOME BACKGROUND

Natural Organisms and "The Perfect Microbial Storm"


2004: Emerging zoonoses and pathogens of public health significance

Infectious diseases have helped shape the course of human history and there is every indication that these diseases will continue to be significant global events. A number of driving forces and societal changes are now creating an unprecedented environment that favours the expansion and perhaps even acceleration of a group of these diseases termed emerging or re-emerging zoonoses.

In a recent publication by the United States Institute of Medicine entitled Microbial Threats to Health, Emergence, Detection, and Response, the authors suggested that a group of factors are swirling and converging to create a perfect microbial storm. This metaphor helps describe the conditions and dynamics that have produced a new era of emerging diseases that began approximately 25 years ago. From the centre, or eye, of the perfect microbial storm, a group of zoonotic pathogens of significant public health concern are emerging.

Microbes continue to evolve and adapt and now, with the tremendous acceleration and expansion of global trade, human movement and travel and the burgeoning global population of both people and animals, the microbes have an even greater opportunity to adapt, change, and be transported to new hosts and ecosystems, often with catastrophic results. Changes in our weather, climate, ecosystem, animal production systems, economic development, and land use continue to alter the dynamic between hosts, vectors, and microbes in novel ways.

Also see: 2005: Steps must be taken to turn tide of public-microbial war




Chimeras


Animal-Human Hybrids

Scientists have begun blurring the line between human and animal by producing chimeras - a hybrid creature that's part human, part animal. ...human cells with rabbit eggs... pigs with human blood... mice with human brains

"Research projects that create human-animal chimeras risk disturbing fragile ecosystems, endanger health, and affront species integrity."

"One doesn't have to be religious or into animal rights to think this doesn't make sense," (says Jeremy Rifkin). "It's the scientists who want to do this. They've now gone over the edge into the pathological domain." "




Artificial Organisms and "The Perfect Microbial Storm"


...a new class of organisms is likely to emerge. These organisms will be artificial in the sense that they will originally be designed by humans. However, they will reproduce, and will "evolve" into something other than their original form, they will be "alive" under any reasonable definition of the word. ...The pace of evolutionary change will be extraordinarily rapid. ...The impact on humanity and the biosphere could be enormous, larger than the industrial revolution, nuclear weapons, or environmental pollution. We must take steps now to shape the emergence of artificial organisms.

Source: Articifial Life: The Coming Evolution. Farmer, J. Doyne, and Alletta d'A. Belin in Artificial Life II from Santa Fe Institute Studies in the Sciences of Complexity, Proc. Vol. X, Redwood City Calif.: Addison-Wesley, 1992, p. 815.




"Breakthroughs" in Nano- and Biotechnology - a Few Highlights


Nano-bio-bots

Tiny robots powered by living muscle have been created by scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles. ...The devices were formed by "growing" rat cells on microscopic silicon chips, the researchers report in the journal Nature Materials. ...Less than a millimetre long, the miniscule robots can move themselves without any external source of power.

"Nanotech researchers have built tiny self-assembling machines that even grow their own muscles from cells taken from living animals. ...Besides just blurring the line between organism and machine, the first of these nano-bio-bots may signal a breakthrough in how to mass produce bio-machines: The hybrid devices were grown on silicon chips using the same principles and some of the same technology employed to make integrated circuits. ...The work is a dramatic example of the marriage of biotechnology with the tiny world of nanotechnology. ...the cells assemble, then they undergo a change, so that they actually form a muscle. ..."Now you have a device that has a skeleton and muscles on it to allow it to move." ...Under a microscope, you can see the tiny, two-footed "bio-bots" crawl around.

"I can make hundreds of thousands as easily as I can make one," said lead nanotechnology researcher Carlo Montemagno of the University of California, Los Angeles. ..."They're absolutely alive," Professor Montemagno told BBC News. "I mean the cells actually grow, multiply and assemble - they form the structure themselves. So the device is alive."

***

Fly-eating robot powers itself

Customizable, Self-assembling Nanotubes

***

"One of the projects DARPA is currently supporting is work by a team at Michigan State University's College of Engineering, who are developing
reconfigurable micro-robots for use in military, intelligence and law enforcement ...."

***

Pentagon plans cyber-insect army

The Pentagon's defence scientists want to create an army of cyber-insects that can be remotely controlled to check out explosives and send transmissions. ...The idea is to insert micro-systems at the pupa stage, when the insects can integrate them into their body, so they can be remotely controlled later. ...A similar scheme aimed at manipulating wasps failed when they flew off to feed and mate.

Ed. Note: What happened to the wasps - and their nano-parts - after they "flew off to feed and mate"?

***

"The combined integration of PNI and gold with silicon-based microdevices has allowed us to fabricate the world's first self-assembled muscle-powered micro-robots," stated the scientists' research paper. ...The team is now trying to apply the system to piezoelectric materials which produce electricity when compressed. If successful this will allow glucose, described as a ubiquitous renewable resource, to be used to create power.

***

Solar Nano-Power

"These flexible photovoltaics could harness half of the sun's spectrum not previously accessed." ..."We made particles from semiconductor crystals which were exactly two, three or four nanometres in size. .." ...Then, they tuned the tiny nanocrystals to catch light at very short wavelengths. ..."The key was finding the right molecules to wrap around our nanoparticles... Too long and the particles couldn't deliver their electrical energy to our circuit; too short, and they clumped up, losing their nanoscale properties. It turned out that one nanometer eight carbon atoms strung together in a chain was 'just right'."

***

Super Microbes Eat Radioactive Waste ...sponsors at the Energy Department doubt the public is ready for the release of this laboratory-engineered bug into the environment. It might eat nuclear wastes, but they worry about what else might it do...




Continued...



posted on Dec, 14 2006 @ 12:53 PM
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"Breakthroughs" in Nano- and Biotechnology - a Few Highlights continued...



Molecular evolution by design

A group at UIUC has announced a process that may be called managed evolution. It involves using multiple steps where by successive approximation they evolve a protein in the direction of having the properties they desire. This significantly reduces the amount of labor involved in the evolution and screening process.

The authors conclude that their new method may provide "a general approach to engineering biomolecules and biosystems such as receptors, enzymes, antibodies, ribosymes, DNAzymes and viruses with novel functions."




Evolution


The notion that the world around us is continuously evolving is a platitude; we rarely grasp its full implications. We do not ordinarily think, for example, of an epidemic disease changing its character as the epidemic spreads. Nor do we think of evolution in plants and animals ocurring in a matter of days or weeks, although it does. And we do not ordinarily imagine the green world around us as a scene of constant, sophisticated chemical warfare, with plants producing pesticides in response to attack, and insects developing resistance. But that is what happens, too.

If we were to grasp the true nature of nature - if we could comprehend the real meaning of evolution - then we could envision a world in which every living plant, insect, and animal species is changing at every instant, in response to every other living plant, insect, and animal. This restless and perpetual change, as inexorable and unstoppable as the waves and tides, implies a world in which all human actions necessarily have uncertain effects. The total system we call the biosphere is so complicated that we cannot know in advance the consequences of anything that we do. ...That is why even our most enlightened past efforts have had undesirable outcomes - either because we did not understanbd enough, or because the ever-changing world responded to our actions in unexpected ways.

Sometime in the twenty-first century, our self-deluded recklessness will collide with our growing technological power. One area where this will occur is in the meeting point of nanotechnology, biotechnology, and computer technology. What all three have in common is the ability to release self-replicating entities into the environment.

Source: Prey. (c) 2002 by Michael Crichton. Inroduction.




Nano-Bio-Bot Evolution


In the Golem project (Genetically Organized Lifelike Electro Mechanics) we conducted a set of experiments in which simple electro-mechanical systems evolved from scratch to yield physical locomoting machines. Like biological lifeforms whose structure and function exploit the behaviors afforded by their own chemical and mechanical medium, our evolved creatures take advantage of the nature of their own medium - thermoplastic, motors, and artificial neurons. We thus achieve autonomy of design and construction using evolution in a limited universe physical simulation, coupled to off-the-shelf rapid manufacturing technology. This is the first time robots have been robotically designed and robotically fabricated.

Also see: The New Military




Nanotechnology and biotechnology are BIG business - and most new "consumer products" contain nanoparticles. So any fears that nanoparticles might escape are practically groundless. We're already buying the little suckers - paying to rub them on our faces, eat them, and spray them in our homes. ...Our only defense here is claiming "lack of fully informed consent."

But - the nanoparticles used in consumer products probably were not designed to self-assemble and replicate. They might anyway, and they might hybridize in nature with microbes, but they weren't designed to.

Arguably though, the real problem comes from nano-bio-bots designed to self-assemble, replicate and self-power, and from genetically engineered artificial organisms.

Presumably, the laboratories where they are made are constructed to prevent their escape.

But can we guarantee that nano-bio-bots and artifical organisms don't escape from commercial laboratories? How?

IMO - the opposite is pretty much guaranteed: nano-bio-bots and other artificial organisms have escaped, and are replicating in the natural world.

Assuming nano-bio-bots and artificial organisms have escaped from the lab, are they cross-breeding with natural microbes to exacerbate the coming "perfect microbial storm"?

Any thoughts?



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 07:53 AM
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Outbreaks from contaminated spinach, lettuce and green onions grown in California highlight evolutionary changes in the e. coli bacterium. E. coli now has the ability to infect plants - to get inside the roots, tissues and leaves. This is unprecedented in biological history. In the past, e. coli could only infect animal protein.

So e. coli mutated, evolved and created a new strain that infects plants. Granted, everything on earth is constantly responding to change, by mutating and evolving, including bacteria.

The question is, "Why did e. coli evolve to infect plants, and how on earth did that happen?"

The answer may involve a man-made artificial e.coli bacterium and a 21st totally artificial amino acid created in 2002-03 at California's Scripps Institute.



Expanding The Genetic Code: The World's First Artificial Organism

From time immemorial, every living thing has shared the same basic set of building blocks - 20 amino acids from which all proteins are made. That is, until now: A group of scientists ...created an organism that can produce a 21st amino acid and incorporate it into proteins completely on its own. The research should help probe some of the central questions of evolutionary theory.

"Why did life settle on 20 amino acids?" asks Ryan Mehl, Ph.D., previously a researcher at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif., and now on the faculty of Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pa. "Would more amino acids give you a better organism - one that could more effectively adapt if placed under selective pressure?" ...To address this question, Mehl and a team of scientists led by Peter Schultz, Ph.D., professor of chemistry at Scripps, added a pathway to an E. coli bacterium that allows it to make a new amino acid - p-aminophenylalanine (pAF) - from simple carbon sources. Analytical techniques showed that pAF was incorporated into proteins with a fidelity rivaling that of the 20 natural amino acids.

"This allows you to have a totally autonomous organism that you can 'race' in one pot by evolving the new bacterium alongside its ancestors with 20 amino acids," says Christopher Anderson, a researcher at Scripps and another author of the paper. ...By racing the organisms - exposing both to selective pressures at the same time and watching their development - the researchers hope to see if the organism with the expanded genetic code has an evolutionary advantage over natural organisms.

***

First truly artificial organism engineered: 16 January 2003

...a team led by Peter Schultz of the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla has managed to coax E. coli bacteria to produce a 21st (artificial) amino acid and use it to make a protein, using only natural food sources such as sugar and water. ...They evolved a mutant E. coli strain that had a specific combination of transfer RNA and the enzyme synthetase... they inserted into the bacteria a sperm whale gene that codes for the protein myoglobin. ...With all these changes in place, the bacteria started producing myoglobin with pAF incorporated exactly where intended.

"This is the first time anyone has ever combined all these and had a healthy, reproducing organism indistinguishable from a natural organism." ...Schultz's team is putting the modified bacteria through its paces to see if they can out-compete natural ones, at least in the lab.

But even if they do, there is no fear of these bacteria running amok in the wild, says Mehl. They are special research strains that cannot live without the nutrients supplied in the lab. But if bacteria, or even higher organisms, can be genetically engineered to produce new amino acids that make longer-lasting and more effective enzymes, drug production could become more efficient and cheaper, says Mehl. ...And there is no reason to stop at 21 amino acids. "In theory, the sky is the limit," he says.




The Scripps team says, "They are special research strains that cannot live without the nutrients supplied in the lab."

Translated: "Sure, it might escape from the lab - but we've designed it to die if it does."

Right. The famous lysine contingency.

These scientists are so impressed with their own abilities and power, they have a complete disregard for nature - and totally underestimate the incredible power of evolution.

Guess what, guys? Life will find a way. It always does.

Did the artificial e. coli escape from the lab? Did it keep mutating and evolving out in the big wide world? Do ya think, maybe?



Back to the perfect microbial storm.

We know about one strain of artificial e. coli, and one artificial amino acid. How many more are there? How many are loose in the world?

What kind of microbial hybrids will we see when artificial organisms start cross-breeding with natural organisms? ...Is it already happening?


.



posted on Dec, 15 2006 @ 10:16 PM
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Originally posted by Soficrow
We know about one strain of artificial e. coli, and one artificial amino acid. How many more are there? How many are loose in the world?

What kind of microbial hybrids will we see when artificial organisms start cross-breeding with natural organisms? ...Is it already happening?

Your findings are truely amazing... and horrific, but I'm deeply grateful you bring them to awareness. I just don't know what to do


Aminoacids now created that evolution never needed... and that remark "In theory, the sky is the limit"... oh my God!! I'm speechless.

Completely new building blocks of life... What kind of lifeforms can evolution make out of them? Frankenstein will look like a pet, I'm afraid.

Reality will go beyond the wildest fiction.

My Dad used to say, concerning the nuclear bomb, "those who invented the thing should be shot and their blueprints destroyed".

I know it's not an option, but this makes me as scarry as my childhood fear of a nuclear holocast did.

My only very selfish comfort now is I'm old, so the full horror of this won't unfold in my time.

But please carry on your research Sofi, these things MUST be brought forward.


I'll try to give up my belief in reincarnation.



posted on Dec, 16 2006 @ 04:35 PM
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Originally posted by khunmoon

I just don't know what to do ...Reality will go beyond the wildest fiction. ...My only very selfish comfort now is I'm old, so the full horror of this won't unfold in my time.



Have faith. Life always finds a way. It really does.





But please carry on your research Sofi, these things MUST be brought forward.




Okay. I will. And thanks.






I'll try to give up my belief in reincarnation.



Why? ...I haven't. There are myriad ways of being. I kinda like the sensory stuff myself, but in a pinch, there are alternatives.


***


Thanks to worldwatcher for this one.



Biocontainment Unit Ready

On a quiet floor of the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, the most advanced containment system available forms a bulwark against the release of deadly infectious diseases such as the feared bird flu. ...The Nebraska Biocontainment Unit has only 10 beds yet is the largest of three quarantine facilities in the country. They would be of no use once a flu pandemic was raging. But if someone shows up with an unusual contagious killer, they might help avert an outbreak.

A special set of double doors is installed, with one door closed and locked at all times to prevent bad air from escaping. Hospital staff can use an access system to safely drop off medical supplies or meals by leaving items between the doors for employees inside the unit to retrieve. ...A separate staff entrance allows doctors and nurses to walk directly to a locker room where they can change into sterile scrubs. Hooded suits with self-contained air systems are available for cases of severe risk. ...A decontamination shower is a required stop before anyone can re-enter the locker room. ...The unit's separate air system uses High Efficiency Particulate Air filters and ultra violet rays to destroy germs. The filtered air is released outside rather than into the hospital's ventilation system. ...Then there are the tornado-proof windows and fire walls.

The Nebraska facility and two-bed germ-containment units at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, Md., and Emory University Hospital in Atlanta are meant to nip a dangerous outbreak in the bud. ...It is not known how many beds are enough to isolate the very first carriers of disease. Early detection will be critical if bird flu or any such deadly disease comes to the United States. ...But these defenses, and plans to turn more space into quasi-containment units should the need arise, would be quickly overrun in a widespread outbreak. ...In the event of a bird flu pandemic, federal officials estimate 30 percent of the population could fall ill - perhaps 90 million people. ...Depending on the severity of the strain, 865,000 to 9.9 million could require hospitalization and 209,000 to 1.9 million could die, according to these estimates.




...Wonder why it's suddenly a priority to inform people about this.





posted on Dec, 16 2006 @ 06:32 PM
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I don't know if it was coordinated or what, but it seems every other article I've read to today is relating to government preparations for a pandemic.

I included a lot of links to todays news stories in this thread
Bird Flu 2006: Mutation

but here's another that speaks to Floridians, and they're warning that 6 million floridians could be infected with 128,000 dying

Hurricanes give state practice for dealing with possible pandemic

I know the flu season has started in the south east, I had the flu over thanksgiving, but is that the reason for this increase in flu related news???



posted on Dec, 16 2006 @ 06:42 PM
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ok, hmmm, yeah ok everything is going to be just fine.

Lafayette, Georgia
Flu outbreak causes Walker County schools to close

Charleston, Mississippi
Flu outbreak in Charleston closes school for the week

Shelby, North Carolina
Flu Outbreak Sidelining Students In Cleveland County



posted on Dec, 17 2006 @ 12:22 AM
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Hey Worldwatcher - pandemic preparations started gearing up worldwide just before flu season started. In some ways it's much like last year, downplayed because people got bird flu burnout last winter.

But in many ways, the situation is much, much worse than it was last year. We're not just in a holding pattern, waiting for H5N1 to go pandemic. H5N1 is so widespread that it's anybody's guess what kind of hybrid might appear.

Expect to see a super-bug mixing bird flu, anthrax, rabies, Hantavirus, the new e. coli strain, aspergillus, norovirus, and ...Gawd knows.

...Back to that Biocontainment Unit article.



Biocontainment Unit Ready

...It is not known how many beds are enough to isolate the very first carriers of disease. Early detection will be critical if bird flu or any such deadly disease comes to the United States.




Given the problems with diagnostics, isolating "the very first carriers of disease" is not an option.

These guys are gonna diddle around with testing and retesting until the pandemic peaks. By which time it will be way too late for 'containment.'

IMO - the US Biocontainment Units - with a total of 14 beds - are there to contain accidental infections from bioweapons.

They are totally useless for a pandemic evolving 'naturally' - from already released artificial organisms, in a polluted environment also contaminated with a myriad of mutated new diseases.


.

[edit on 17-12-2006 by soficrow]



posted on Dec, 17 2006 @ 10:17 AM
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Some people mistakenly think that high-path Asian H5N1 bird flu is our only problem - that if the nasty strain does not come to North America, we will be safe.

Not so.

Microbes everywhere have gained the ability to cross-breed in ways never before possible. Now - viruses, bacteria, molds and other microbes are mixing together differently in different regions, creating various new diseases.

It does seem the really bad stuff needs a flu component to spread in humans. But "low-path" H5N1 bird flu is everywhere, including North America, and it has a propensity to mutate into "high-path" strains. So it's happening.

The "perfect microbial storm" will occur when distinct hybrids from disparate locations come together, cross-breed again, and re-mix to create a super-bug.

News about North American hybrids is starting to break. I pulled the following quotes from the links worldwatcher posted above:



Flu Outbreak: Charleston closes school for the week

The district is combatting three different viral infections... One is a stomach virus; the second is a sore throat with a temperature. The third virus consists of flu-like symptoms of headaches, pains, chills and high fever. ..."All three were coming together so we have a melting pot," ...

***

Flu Outbreak Sidelining Students In Cleveland County

Symptoms include fever, headache, extreme tiredness, muscle aches and stomach problems.




In the past, flu viruses did not cause stomache problems or sore throats. Stomach symptoms historically indicated a bacterial infection, while sore throats distinguished colds (caused by Rhinoviruses) from the flu, which is caused by Orthomyxoviridae.

So Charleston is witnessing the evolution of a new 'strain' involving 3 different viruses that are cross-breeding. The strain in Cleveland County already cross-bred, and is a new hybrid.

This ability for microbes to breed across their own 'species barriers' is relatively new. Even three years ago, such occurrences were very rare.

But now, the flood gates have opened.

This is only the beginning.





posted on Dec, 17 2006 @ 11:01 PM
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.

Here is an unclassified document from the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), prepared in 2003 by the CIA's Office of Transnational Issues under direction from the Strategic Assessments Group.



CIA on SARS: Lessons From the First Epidemic of the 21st Century (PDF)

Had SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) been even moderately more contagious, it probably could not have been contained, according to a panel of prominent experts convened by the Office of Transnational Issues' Strategic Assessments Group. They attributed the successful control of SARS to basic public health measures such as early case detection, quarantine, isolation, and personal protective measures; a basically effective global health surveillance system; a high level of commitment from affected governments; preparedness training already in place for biological warfare; and luck.

- You've heard of the film, "The Perfect Storm." If SARS was a very, very bad microbial storm, the perfect microbial storm is yet to come; and it will come, have no doubt.




.



posted on Dec, 18 2006 @ 03:54 PM
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Hmmm. I was really pumped to find the CIA document I quoted and linked above.

No comments?





posted on Dec, 19 2006 @ 01:41 PM
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Besides H5N1 bird flu, a number of other diseases are epidemic and creating 'microbial storms.' Most are zoonotic, meaning they infect animals and people.

More 'microbial storms' will occur when 2 or more of these pathogens come together in a single host and cross-breed to form new hybrids.

The "most perfect microbial storm" will occur when all the hybrids meet in one host to create a super-hybrid. Influenza virus - the flu - likely will be an essential component of the super-hybrid, as a virulence factor.

H5N1 bird flu is endemic in Asia, and also common in North America, if not endemic. It is irrelevant that North American strains are not highly pathogenic, given the flu's propensity to mutate.

Here is an overview of some of the microbial storms already raging.


NORTH AMERICA

Epidemic diseases in North America include: West Nile Virus, E.coli, MRSA (flesh-eating disease, including community acquired strains), aspergillus, AIDS, norovirus, C. difficile (and more).

Most new epidemic diseases are difficult and expensive to diagnose accurately; they are incurable; and are difficult or impossible to treat medically. As a result, only the most acute and life-threatening symptoms and stages are acknowledged officially, and medical care is primarily "supportive."

I will post overviews of various epidemic diseases that might contribute to the 'perfect microbial storm,' and add profiles as I have time. Other members are welcome to do so too. Thanks.



West Nile Virus


West Nile is now endemic in the United States - and it is mutationg. "The epidemic is still not fully understood and its character continues to change and adapt. The recent recognition of a number of non-vector modes of transmission has revealed the disease as a greater threat and more difficult to control than first thought. ...Each year has led to new information about the host range, modes of transmission and clinical manifestations of infection. Old paradigms were continually discarded as new information became available..."



West Nile virus (WNV) has caused repeated large-scale human epidemics in North America since it was first detected in 1999 and is now the dominant vector-borne disease in this continent.

***

"For the past four years, since the appearance of the disease, we’ve looked at West Nile Virus as a human/wildlife disease, working closely with our partners at CDC and other state and local public health agencies," said Dr. Christopher Brand, USGS Wildlife Disease Scientist. "While we will continue working closely with the human health community, we also recognize that the virus may be dramatically affecting wildlife, especially wild bird populations, and that we need to focus additional research efforts on wildlife impacts."

***

West Nile Virus (WNV) belongs to the family of viruses known as Flaviviruses. Other flaviviruses include the well-know viruses that cause Yellow Fever and Dengue lever. West Nile is most closely related to Japanese Equine Encephalitis and St. Louis Encephalitis, also flaviviruses West Nile Virus is transmitted through a mosquito vector and is classified as an arbovirus (arthropod-borne virus). ...Birds are the primary reservoir for the virus; however, mammals, notably rodents and horses, are susceptible to West Nile Virus, and can also act as reservoirs. ...Raccoon, squirrel, chipmunk, rabbits, and three species of bat tested positive for West Nile virus in the New York Area in year 2000.

Experience with old-world West Nile Virus epidemics demonstrates that West Nile Virus poses similar, if not lesser, mortality risk to humans than the closely related, North America endemic, and bird-reservoired St. Louis Encephalitis virus.

Birds are important sentinels for the overall health of the environment. Birds dying from West Nile Virus originally alerted public health officials in the United States to the presence of the virus.

***

West Nile virus and North America: an unfolding story (PDF)

Before the introduction of the West Nile virus (WNV) into the United States of America (USA) in 1999, conditions in North America were ideal for an arboviral epidemic. Such factors as the large, susceptible and non-immune animal and human populations, the presence of competent vectors, increasing international travel and commerce, existing methods for rapid dissemination and an ill-prepared animal and public health infrastructure all combined to create the essential elements for a severe animal and public health crisis – the ‘perfect microbial storm’. The introduction of WNV into New York City was the final factor, serving as the catalyst to initiate one of the most significant epidemics in the USA. The spread of WNV across the country resulted in very large populations of wildlife, equines and people being exposed and infected. The epidemic is still not fully understood and its character continues to change and adapt. The recent recognition of a number of non-vector modes of transmission has revealed the disease as a greater threat and more difficult to control than first thought. West Nile virus gives every indication that it will become a permanent part of the ‘medical landscape’ of the USA, continuing to threaten wildlife, domestic animals and humans as a now endemic disease. This paper discusses the features of this extraordinary epidemic, and emphasises the need for an integrated surveillance system, greater diagnostic capacity and improved control strategies.

The introduction of West Nile virus became the catalyst and final element to initiate this microbial ‘storm’ for which scientists know the beginning, but not the end of the story. The aggressiveness with which WNV became integrated into the diverse ecosystems within the Americas and the severity of the epizootics in terms of human and animal morbidity and mortality continually surprised, dismayed and frustrated public and animal health communities as they worked to educate the public, detect virus emergence, diagnose clinical cases and try to slow epizootic transmission. Each year has led to new information about the host range, modes of transmission and clinical manifestations of infection. Old paradigms were continually discarded as new information became available through the co-ordinated efforts of public health agencies, the medical community, wildlife officials, veterinarians, animal health agencies, basic researchers and industry in a broad coalition of disease surveillance, reporting and research initiatives established in the wake of the virus. While the effort to establish a surveillance infrastructure was huge, nothing prepared the human and animal health community for the rapidity of the geographic migration of the virus or the escalating severity of the epizootic as it occurred at the leading edge of this migration.

West Nile virus is a remarkable example of an emerging zoonosis that involves the dynamic interface of wildlife, domestic animals and humans. North America, with its non-immune hosts, competent vectors and opportunities for rapid transmission, created an ideal setting for the ‘perfect microbial storm’ to occur. Today, the storm ‘continues to rage’ and the prospect of controlling it in the near future is unlikely. West Nile virus will remain in North America and, with continuous ecological changes, adaptation of the virus and the potential expansion of its host range, the WNV story will continue to unfold, often in unpredictable ways.




Also see: eMedicine: West Nile Virus

Testing and Treating West Nile Virus in Humans

CDC: Symptoms of West Nile Virus



link

[edit on 19-12-2006 by soficrow]



posted on Dec, 20 2006 @ 08:44 AM
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E. Coli 0157:H7


The 0157:H7 strain of E. coli is endemic in North America, associated with deadly outbreaks from contaminated beef, chicken, seafood - and now, air, water, soil, and produce, including spinach, iceberg lettuce, romaine, and radish, alfalfa, and mung bean sprouts, for example.

Historically, disease-causing E. coli only infected animal protein, and had to be ingested (eaten). Vegetarians used to be safe. But not any more. This stuff permeates industrial agricultural environments and from there, gets into the soil and groundwater, and on to our drinking water and veggies.

When seeds, irrigation water, soil, or fertiliser are contaminated with bacteria like E. coli - the bacteria spreads throughout the leaves, stems and roots of the plants where it is impossible to wash off or disinfect.



E. Coli Cases

In recent years, the number of outbreaks from (E. coli) contaminated produce has far surpassed those from beef and poultry and has drawn nearly even with those linked to seafood, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a nutrition advocacy group. While there are more food-borne outbreaks related to seafood, far more people get sick from produce outbreaks, the group found.

***

His 3-year-old daughter was hospitalized for 16 days and nearly died of kidney failure after visiting the petting zoo at a county fair in August 2002.

About 75 people got sick in that outbreak, and health officials eventually said the bacteria may have been airborne, in dust. For that reason, Closson said the CDC's advice about handwashing would not have helped. "The building was rife with E. coli. Tell me what washing your hands is going to do," he said.

***

Some tend to think of these bacteria as meat associated, but...

Aside from the pathogens living on the outside of the plant, research has shown that pathogens can enter the plant and persist inside where it is impossible to wash off or disinfect. ...This has occurred in many plants and with several bacterial species. There are unsurprising ports of entry like cuts or bruises, but an apple can also be contaminated by a pathogen entering through capillary action.

...Contamination can also occur through irrigation. According to Tauxe, studies have shown that mature lettuce plants irrigated with E. coli O157:H7 can within a day have E. coli throughout the leaves, stems and roots of the lettuce plants at about 102 or 103 per gram.

“Plants actively take up small particles in the irrigating fluid and distribute it throughout the plant. We should not be surprised that bacteria are among those particles,” Tauxe said.

***

Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 Present in Radish Sprouts

...we demonstrated the presence of viable enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7 not only on the outer surfaces but also in the inner tissues and stomata of cotyledons of radish sprouts grown from seeds experimentally contaminated with the bacterium. HgCl2 treatment of the outer surface of the hypocotyl did not kill the contaminating bacteria, which emphasized the importance of either using seeds free from E. coli O157:H7 in the production of radish sprouts or heating the sprouts before they are eaten.

These findings suggested that like alfalfa (2, 3, 5, 7, 9) and mung beans (1), radish sprouts could pose a health risk if seeds or hydroponic water were contaminated with bacteria which cause food-borne diseases.




Endemic West Nile in North America resulted mainly from trade, industrial agriculture, and climate change.

E. coli also is endemic in North America, but in this case, the most dangerous new strains likely mutated from artificial organisms, and hybridized with natural strains.


New E. coli study could shed light on movement of GM bacteria

A recent study published in the January 2002 edition of Applied and Environmental Microbiology documents the transmission of a potentially pathogenic strain of E. coli from manure-contaminated soil and water into the roots and leaves of lettuce plants. ...E. Ann Clark, co-author of this article, point out that the Rutgers study may shed light on the pathways of movement of genetically engineered bacteria amongst soil, plants and insects.

After growing lettuce in composted manure, each gram of which they had inoculated at a rate of 100 million E. coli 0157:H7 organisms, the Rutgers research team documented a buildup of the pathogenic bacterium within plant leaves. Because the accumulation was within the leaves, not on them, simply washing the leaves in water would not cleanse or remove them.

"The vast majority of manure used in this country is supplied to chemical (non-organic) farms," says Brian Leahy, president of the California Certified Organic Farmers. Yet, the USDA does not regulate the use of manure on chemical farms, whereas it does in organic agriculture.




An 'ordinary' E. coli infection can destroy the kidneys - an effect involving a protein called myoglobin (17.5 kD). Myoglobin is produced naturally in muscle but is poisonous to other cells, or cytotoxic.

At least one artificial E. coli organism was genetically engineered to produce myoglobin. Because E. coli infection can also cause Rhabdomyolysis - a secondary disease that destroys muscle, and releases myoglobin - infection with myoglobin producing E. coli is especially dangerous.

Myoglobin 'overexpression' also is linked to oxidative stress and mitochondrial diseases.


First truly artificial organism engineered: 16 January 2003

...a team led by Peter Schultz of the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla has managed to coax E. coli bacteria to produce a 21st (artificial) amino acid and use it to make a protein, using only natural food sources such as sugar and water. ...They evolved a mutant E. coli strain that had a specific combination of transfer RNA and the enzyme synthetase... they inserted into the bacteria a sperm whale gene that codes for the protein myoglobin. ...With all these changes in place, the bacteria started producing myoglobin with pAF incorporated exactly where intended.

"This is the first time anyone has ever combined all these and had a healthy, reproducing organism indistinguishable from a natural organism." ...Schultz's team is putting the modified bacteria through its paces to see if they can out-compete natural ones, at least in the lab.

But even if they do, there is no fear of these bacteria running amok in the wild, says Mehl. They are special research strains that cannot live without the nutrients supplied in the lab. But if bacteria, or even higher organisms, can be genetically engineered to produce new amino acids that make longer-lasting and more effective enzymes, drug production could become more efficient and cheaper, says Mehl. ...And there is no reason to stop at 21 amino acids. "In theory, the sky is the limit," he says.

***

Myoglobin toxicity in proximal human kidney cells

We conclude that: (1) HO-generated iron release initiates myoglobin toxicity in HK-2 cells; (2) myoglobin, rather than cytochrome p450, appears to be the more likely source of toxic iron release; (3) H[2]O[2] generation, perhaps facilitated by intracellular Ca[2+]/iron, appears to play a critical role; and (4) cellular respiration/terminal mitochondrial electron transport ultimately helps mediate myoglobin's cytotoxic effect.





continued next post...

link

[edit on 20-12-2006 by soficrow]



posted on Dec, 20 2006 @ 08:46 AM
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A MECHANISTIC STUDY OF MYOGLOBIN NEPHROTOXICITY

Myoglobin is an endogenous protein that can become nephrotoxic under certain conditions such as crush injuries, drug overdose, and seizures where prolonged contraction of muscle leads to cell death and leakage of myoglobin. The mechanism of myoglobin-induced nephrotoxicity is not fully understood. ...A comparison of the toxicity of myoglobin with its components suggested that the iron is mostly involved with the loss of membrane integrity and slightly involved with the loss of cell function. Because DFX can detoxify ferryl myoglobin as well as chelate free iron, the protection of lipid peroxidation, changes in glutathione levels, and LDH release suggest that ferryl myoglobin also might participate in the oxidative events leading to loss of membrane integrity. In contrast, the heme portion of myoglobin might target the mitochondria, initiate the production of radicals, and lead to loss of cell function indicated by loss of gluconeogenesis.

this study establishes three unique events concerning myoglobin toxicity. First, early and late effects of myoglobin toxicity have been delineated. Other studies have reported LDH release, lipid peroxidation, and alterations in glutathione and ATP levels, but none has ever evaluated these parameters as a function of time. Secondly, this study establishes iron-dependent and iron-independent components of myoglobin toxicity. Lastly, because myoglobin toxicity was demonstrated in a renal model that has collapsed lumens, this suggests toxicity can occur independently of luminal events.

***

Rhabdomyolysis is a severe and life-threatening condition in which skeletal muscle is damaged. Acute renal failure due to rhabdomyolysis has been widely described and its main pathophysiological mechanisms are renal vasoconstriction, intraluminal cast formation and direct myoglobin toxicity.

***

Overexpressions of myoglobin and antioxidant enzymes...

...oxidative stress is associated with Mb expression specifically in mitochondrial diseases. The antioxidant enzymes seem to be upregulated to protect against muscle damage in nonatrophic RRFs. However, the Mb-mediated oxidative damage may become more extensive and result in further mitochondrial dysfunction and progressive atrophy of RRF with impaired upregulation of Mb.





Conditions are ripe in North America for a 'microbial storm' involving E. coli. And that's without emergencies like Katrina escalating the dangers.

Clean-up workers face very real risks of illness. But more important to public health, when a victim is exposed to several pathogens at the same time, their cells become bioweapons laboratories far superior to the most advanced biotech lab any nation or corporation might build. Infected workers are walking bioweapons laboratories.



Katrina/Rita Responders and Residents Facing Serious Hazards with Inadequate Protection, NYCOSH Update on Safety and Health, September 29, 2005

On the Gulf Coast, OSHA is giving advice to employers and workers, but leaving compliance up to employers. A week after Hurricane Katrina, an OSHA response team in eastern Louisiana, the area hardest hit by Katrina, determined that emergency response workers there were potentially exposed to "Salmonella, Ecoli, West Nile Virus, Encephalitis, St. Louis Encephalitis, Shigellosis, Listeria, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Guardia, Cryptosporidiosis, Campylobacter, Hep A and Hep B." Yet OSHA has neither mandated nor recommended the use equipment that would protect workers from those pathogens. Instead OSHA’s official advice was "frequent hand washing and proper disposal or laundering (160 degree Fahrenheit) of contaminated items." The same OSHA document that lists the contaminants in eastern Louisana and advises hand-washing for protection notes two pages later that "there is . . . no rest rooms, no restaurants, no water, available in the eastern side of the state."

"Our hearts go out to the thousands of workers and hundreds of thousands of residents who have already suffered so much and now are potentially exposed to the contaminants," said Shufro, "but the potential for exposures that could cause serious illnesses is very real and can be expected to increase when the contaminants dry out and have the potential of becoming airborne. EPA and OSHA must develop and implement a sampling protocol that would tell people exactly what the hazards are, and what they must do to be protected from them. The agencies must provide the data to the public so residents and workers can make informed decisions. Cleanup workers need to be trained, as do returning residents who are attempting to repair their homes or salvage their possessions. OSHA should rigorously enforce their regulations and provide workers and residents with detailed information about health risks of exposure to the contaminants that are present."





ALSO SEE:

E. coli: general info and links

E. coli tragedy in water park

Cataloging Airborne Bacteria, City by City
Tests suggest E. coli spread through air
E coli linked to airborne sawdust

A selection of North American produce related outbreaks from 1990-2005.
Fruit and Vegetable Food Safety Issues


.format, link



[edit on 20-12-2006 by soficrow]



posted on Dec, 20 2006 @ 11:08 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
We can still buy green, and buy locally - but imo, it's not enough.

What kind of changes can we make at this point? Realistically?


Do not be disillusioned.

Choose green.

Buy locally.

Those choosing organic today and living in the countryside with clean air and local foodsources will be the ones who are healthy when the plague comes; strong survivors.

Those eating conagra/monsanto food and living within the city walls will come to know the destiny of a kafir.

Shortly, (interpret as you may) will come a drastic change in population. It will be welcomed as a blessing by those who believe.

Everything is indeed dust in the wind.

I am,

Sri Oracle



posted on Dec, 20 2006 @ 11:25 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
...................
As humans, we are not genetically "fit" to live on this all-new chemically altered planet - but it's perfect for microbes.

Iindustry, and our entire "economic system" support microbial life, but kill everything else.

We can still buy green, and buy locally - but imo, it's not enough.

What kind of changes can we make at this point? Realistically?



Wow....wait a second, you are making some big jumps and assumptions there.

First of all, the world is a "microbiological garden".... Yes there is a lot of manmade chemicals and gases these days and age, but viruses, and bacteria have always existed, have always adapted and have in the past destroyed entire tribes and have affected entire civilizations...before the car and factories weere even built...

And that's not even counting that the Earth gets bombarded with meteors from other planets some of which probably hold some form of microbes: bacteria inside of them.

The first article you excerpted clearly mentions that all microbes adapt...you think this is something new? What exactly do you propose to do to "stop all these mutations"?...

As for "the Bushes are out to hide what is really happening" you gave the excerpt from one site which could have made the mistakes you mentioned, but instead of trying to find more corroborating evidence from other sources you want to immediately claim "the Bushes are hiding something"?....


[edit on 20-12-2006 by Muaddib]



posted on Dec, 20 2006 @ 11:28 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow

IMO - microbes are the messengers that 'communicate' between the environment and complex living organisms - they also are the media that carry new molecules we put into the environment into other living cells. It's how 'Gaia' works - and it's all about achieving harmony and balance.

So in the larger scheme of things, microbes are our buddies. They make it physically possible for us to adapt to changes in our environment.

I am saying we need to slow down the rate of change. ...and also, that we DO have the power to pull it off.


i am sorry, are you trying to change microbiology now too?...

Yes, in part microbes have helped us adapt to our environment...but every once in a while, and even before this day and age might I add, there have emerged bateria and viruses which "have literally killed off people".... it is nothing new...and it is not going to stop because you want it to.

Oh and BTW...there are naturally occurring bacteria and viruses, which occur naturally "without the help of any manmade chemicals or gases" that can kill you in days, some even in hours...yet you want to claim "they are our buddies"....

Lets put some numbers and actual information in perspective.


Bacteria are amazingly resilient organisms. They have been evolving for billions of years and no part of the Earth has escaped the attention of these natural survivors. All plant and animal species are subject to their sometimes-deadly attention.
Not all bacteria are harmful to humans however. This is just as well - biologists estimate that a gram of soil can contain up to 100 million living bacteria, and that the total mass of microbe life on Earth is 25 times greater than the total mass of all animals!

www.bbc.co.uk...

Sorry to bring this up, but microbes, including bacteria and viruses, have existed for billions of years....far longer than humans have existed in this planet and anywhere else, and they will survive us for billions of years.

[edit on 21-12-2006 by Muaddib]






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