Coronavirus: Track the virus' spread with this world map tool

The Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) created an online dashboard map that provides up-to-date data on reported cases and deaths worldwide.

Visualization: JHU CSSE
  • A new strain of coronavirus has spread from China to at least 19 countries, including the U.S.
  • It remains unclear how bad the outbreak will become, but the World Health Organization has stopped short of calling it a global health emergency.
  • The new coronavirus is less deadly but more contagious than SARS.
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Wuhan coronavirus confirmed to be transmissible between humans

The new strain of coronavirus that has spread across Asia is causing concern ahead of China's Lunar New Year.

(Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)
  • A new strain of the coronavirus — similar to SARS — is spreading across China and to nearby countries, including the U.S..
  • Although it's relatively early on, the virus appears to be fairly infectious and capable of human-to-human transmission, a serious concern given the many travelers expected to visit China for the upcoming Lunar New Year.
  • The World Health Organization intends to convene an emergency committee in the near future to determine whether the outbreak should be considered a public health emergency of international concern.
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The ketogenic diet may help fight against the flu

Researchers found that the popular diet could confer some benefits to your immune system.

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  • The ketogenic diet works by tricking your body into thinking its in starvation mode — with very few carbohydrates to turn into glucose, your body instead burns fat to use as energy.
  • While most go on the diet to lose weight, evidence suggests a whole host of additional benefits to mental and physical health, though these findings still need to be confirmed.
  • Recent research has added another potential benefit to the keto diet: It could help you defend against flu infections.
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The world now has an Ebola vaccine, in historic EU approval

The vaccine is 97.5% effective in protecting against the Zaire species of Ebola, according to the World Health Organization.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • The European Medicines Agency granted special approval for an Ebola vaccine called Ervebo.
  • Ervebo has proven remarkably effective in clinical trials conducted in Africa.
  • An Ebola outbreak has killed more than 2,000 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo since August 2018.
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One shot for life: New research brings us closer to universal flu vaccine

Researchers recently discovered an antibody that totally disrupts the influenza virus's ability to replicate; it could be used to design a universal flu vaccine.

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  • Because the flu mutates so frequently, we have to get a new flu shot every year that's designed for that year's strain of flu.
  • But researchers recently discovered an antibody found in an infected patient's blood that prevents the virus from replicating, even across multiple strains. According to researchers, this effect "is just mind-boggling."
  • The antibody works by targeting a very specific part of a very specific protein on all flu virions; this piece can't change too much from strain to strain because it is fundamental to the flu's ability to replicate.
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