Read on for our roundup of important, interesting, or insightful microbiology news we have spotted this month.
The Wales case rate has now risen to 334.1 cases per 100,000. This the highest number of cases since January.
Swansea has the highest level of positive cases in Wales with a case rate of 498.4 and more than half of the city’s communities have case rates above 500.
Across Wales the average number of daily positive tests is 1,505, up from 946 the week before.
In Wales a total of 2,347,000 (74%) people have received one dose, and 2,171,499 (68%) people have been fully vaccinated.
90% of over 50s in Wales have been vaccinated whereas only 60% of young people under 30 have received the vaccine. 45% of the hospital cases in Wales are people under 30.
More than 47 million people in the UK have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine – part of the biggest inoculation programme the country has ever launched.
The rollout expanded to all those aged 18 and over after the government hit its target of offering a first jab to everyone in the top priority groups – all those over the age of 50, plus those in high-risk categories – by mid-April and was later offered to those aged 16 and 17.
The UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has also recommended offering a jab to children aged 12-15 if they were in a higher-risk group due to certain health conditions. There are currently no confirmed plans to mass vaccinate children under 16 at this point.
A new study that details mosquito immune cells could shed light on the insect immune system and how mosquitoes transmit parasites that cause malaria.
The Iowa State university study was published in the peer-reviewed scientific journaleLife and provides new discoveries and insight to the mosquito immune system. Ryan Smith, an associate professor of entomology at Iowa State University and lead author of the study has said.
“These experiments lay the foundation for a better understanding of how these immune cells function that could lead to a future when humans are able to make mosquitoes unable to transmit disease”
“There’s a big body of evidence that suggests that immune cells of mosquitoes are really critical to their ability to transmit disease…From that perspective, we haven’t really known a great deal about the molecular aspect of what those immune cells look like.”
The UK scientists behind the AstraZeneca Covid jab are now trialling their vaccination for the plague. The phase-one trial will see at least 40 healthy 18- to 55-year-olds test the vaccine, which uses the same technology as the coronavirus jab.
The Plague otherwise know as the black death was one of the worst pandemics in human history and killed half the population of Europe in the 1300’s. It’s not really though t of as a threat in Europe and other parts of the world but there are still cases in some rural areas of Africa, Asia and America.
The trial, which will run for at least a year, is funded by Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, the national funding agency investing in science and research in the UK.