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Bubonic Plague

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NEWS
May 9, 2011 | By Marissa Cevallos, HealthKey / For the Booster Shots blog
Bubonic plague is alive and, if not thriving, at least maintaining a presence in the United States. Just ask the New Mexico man who's now earned the distinction of becoming the first human plague case of 2011. The 58-year-old Santa Fe County resident has been hospitalized and is recovering, say officials from the New Mexico Department of Health . The folks there are likely less rattled than folks in the eastern U.S. would be. New Mexico has seen 262 human cases of bubonic plague between 1949 and 2010.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 25, 2013 | By Ari Bloomekatz
Los Angeles County health officials confirmed this week that a trapped ground squirrel tested positive for plague, and as a precaution parts of the Angeles National Forest near Wrightwood have been closed. The areas closed, since 1 p.m. Wednesday, include the Twisted Arrow, Broken Blade and Pima Loops of the Table Mountain campgrounds. The areas will be closed for at least a week, according to a health advisory from the county Department of Public Health. "Plague is a bacterial infection that can be transmitted to humans through the bites of infected fleas, which is why we close affected campgrounds and recreational areas as a precaution while preventive measures are taken to control the flea population," Jonathan E. Fielding, head of the health department, said in the advisory.
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NEWS
October 26, 1989 | Reuters
An outbreak of bubonic plague has killed five people in Botswana and 19 others have the disease, the official news agency said Wednesday. It said that Health Minister Kebatlameng Morake flew to the site of the outbreak, in the Boteti area 250 miles northwest of Gaborone, the capital, and a team of doctors, health inspectors and nurses is on its way. A primary school where two sisters died of the plague had been closed.
NEWS
October 12, 2011 | By Eryn Brown, Los Angeles Times / for the Booster Shots blog
Europe's feared Black Death wiped out about 30 million people -- 30 to 50% of the population on the continent -- in a period of just five years, between 1347 and 1351.   Now geneticists have reconstructed the genome of the bug that caused the plague -- an ancient strain of a bacterium called Yersinia pestis -- and have discovered that it wasn't so different from descendants existing today. The discovery, made by scientists at McMaster University in Canada, the University of Tubingen in Germany and collaborators at other institutions, was described in a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature.
NEWS
June 10, 1998 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Authorities warned hikers and campers Tuesday that two squirrels carrying bubonic plague had been found in a Southern California wilderness area. Moise Mizrahi, a spokesman for the San Diego County Department of Environmental Health, said crews are posting signs and handing out fliers after routine tests on squirrels at William Heise County Park in southeastern California determined that they were infected.
NEWS
October 13, 1998 | Associated Press
Campers and residents in the upper Sierra have been warned to keep their pets indoors after bubonic plague was found in a cat and two chipmunks. While no humans have been stricken, the Nevada County Department of Environmental Health has issued a "plague alert," listing precautions that should be taken. Bubonic plague, carried by infected fleas, can be transmitted to humans by rodents or pets that come in contact with them.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 21, 2001 | Times Staff and Wire Reports
A dead chipmunk at Lake Tahoe has tested positive for bubonic plague. Authorities say it's important to alert residents and visitors, but no reason for alarm. Signs have been posted at beaches, trail heads and campgrounds warning people to avoid the rodents. The chipmunk was found last week near the Lake Tahoe Forest Service Visitors Center. Plague is endemic in rodent populations in the West and has infected chipmunks and squirrels.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 4, 1997 | From Times staff and wire reports
For the first time, scientists have found a strain of bubonic plague that is resistant to all the antibiotics normally used to treat and prevent the deadly infectious disease. The strain was found in only one person, a 16-year-old boy in Madagascar who got the plague in 1995. But the resistant genetic material transferred easily to other strains of plague bacteria in the laboratory and could spread just as easily in nature, the researchers report in today's New England Journal of Medicine.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 24, 1992 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Two campgrounds in Kings Canyon National Park were closed after a mouse died of bubonic plague. A dusting program will take three to four weeks to remove diseased fleas from rodents in the Azalea and Crystal Springs campgrounds, located in the popular Grant Grove section of the park. The closures temporarily eliminate 185 of the park's 683 campsites. The adjacent Sunset campground, which had already closed for the winter, will also be treated.
NEWS
October 27, 1988 | United Press International
Federal health officials today reported that 14 cases of the bubonic plague--the "Black Death" that wiped out a third of the world's population in the Middle Ages--have surfaced in the United States so far this year. The plague is now curable, but officials monitor each case closely in hopes of preventing an epidemic of plague-induced pneumonia like the one that killed 33 people in Los Angeles in 1924. More than 90% of plague infections occur in the Southwest, officials said.
NEWS
May 9, 2011 | By Marissa Cevallos, HealthKey / For the Booster Shots blog
Bubonic plague is alive and, if not thriving, at least maintaining a presence in the United States. Just ask the New Mexico man who's now earned the distinction of becoming the first human plague case of 2011. The 58-year-old Santa Fe County resident has been hospitalized and is recovering, say officials from the New Mexico Department of Health . The folks there are likely less rattled than folks in the eastern U.S. would be. New Mexico has seen 262 human cases of bubonic plague between 1949 and 2010.
NEWS
January 25, 2011 | By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times
Think twice about cuddling your furry friends in bed; otherwise, you could be exposed to a nasty disease. That’s the recommendation from a paper being published in next month's issue of the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases. Pet ownership appears to have been on the rise in the U.S. over the last few decades, surveys show. Of an estimated 60 million pet dogs in the U.S., according to this study, an estimated 21% to 33% sleep on or in their owners' beds – and of 75 million cats, 60% curl up with their owners.
NATIONAL
September 20, 2009 | Associated Press
The University of Chicago Medical Center says the infection that killed a scientist may be connected to bacteria he researched that cause bubonic plague. The university said Saturday that its researcher studied the genetics of harmful bacteria including Yersinia pestis , which causes the illness. The researcher died Sept. 13. His name and age haven't been released. The medical center says the bacteria he worked with were a weakened strain that isn't known to cause illness in healthy adults.
NEWS
August 31, 2008 | Cory Booker,John Doerr and Ted Mitchell, Cory Booker is the mayor of Newark, N.J. John Doerr is a partner at the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Ted Mitchell is chief executive of NewSchools Venture Fund and president of the California Board of Education.
In the summer of 1918, as tuberculosis, bubonic plague and a flu pandemic threatened America's newly crowded cities, the chemist Charles Holmes Herty took a walk through New York City with his colleague J.R. Bailey. Herty posed a question: Suppose Bailey discovered an exceptionally powerful medicine. What institution would allow him to take his breakthrough from lab experiment to widespread cure? Bailey replied, "I don't know." That alarming answer moved Herty to propose a visionary solution -- an institution that would encourage research and development throughout the country.
HEALTH
December 10, 2007 | Elena Conis, Special to The Times
Each year in the western U.S., a handful of people come down with the plague, catching the ancient disease from animals (often rodents) that harbor the bacteria. A National Park Service employee recently died of the disease, and an Arizona woman became infected but survived. Today, such cases get little press. But in ancient times, the plague evoked intense fear, panic and chaos -- for good reason.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 19, 2006 | Michelle Keller, Times Staff Writer
A Los Angeles woman is being treated for bubonic plague, the first case of the age-old pestilence in the county since 1984, health officials announced Tuesday. The infected patient, whose identity was withheld, came down with symptoms last week and continues to be treated in a hospital for the disease, which is characterized by swollen, black lumps under the skin, officials said. She may have contracted the disease from fleas in the area around her Country Club Park neighborhood.
NATIONAL
September 20, 2009 | Associated Press
The University of Chicago Medical Center says the infection that killed a scientist may be connected to bacteria he researched that cause bubonic plague. The university said Saturday that its researcher studied the genetics of harmful bacteria including Yersinia pestis , which causes the illness. The researcher died Sept. 13. His name and age haven't been released. The medical center says the bacteria he worked with were a weakened strain that isn't known to cause illness in healthy adults.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 26, 1998 | PETER M. WARREN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
County officials say a rat found carrying bubonic plague in the city of Orange does not signal a threat to public health--but they are taking precautions all the same. No other incidents have been reported since the rat was caught and tested in mid-August, according to Orange County Health Care Agency officials. "We don't think it is a significant danger because we are on top of it," said James Webb, technical director for the vector-control district of the Health Care Agency.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 5, 2006 | Cecilia Rasmussen, Times Staff Writer
It was a warm, summery day in late September 1924 when a group of Mexican immigrants began to congregate outside a boardinghouse on Clara Street, north of what is now Cesar E. Chavez Avenue and west of Vignes Street. It was a small, bustling, mostly Latino community near downtown, where the Twin Towers jail complex now stands. Folks were listening to Jesus Lajun's comical story about his detective work in tracking down an overpowering and nauseating odor beneath his house.
NATIONAL
July 9, 2005 | From Times Wire Reports
A cat in Cheyenne was diagnosed with plague -- the fourth in the state this year -- and public health officials warned people to take precautions to protect their pets and themselves. Gus Lopez, director of the Cheyenne-Laramie County Health Department, said the latest case occurred west of the city, in the same general area where two other cats contracted the disease. A fourth cat, in neighboring Albany County, also was diagnosed with plague.
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