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October 21, 2012 | By Stuart Pfeifer
Here is a roundup of alleged cons, frauds and schemes to watch out for. Fake news sites: A company accused of setting up fake news websites to deceptively market weight-loss products and other goods has agreed to pay more than $2 million to settle a lawsuit brought by the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC accused Circa Direct and its owner, Andrew Davidson, of running online advertisements that looked like news websites with titles such as “News 6.” The links led consumers to fake news reports about weight-loss beverages, penny-stock investments and work-at-home schemes, the FTC said.
October 2, 2012 | By Dan Weikel, Los Angeles Times
A second person in Los Angeles County has died of West Nile virus this year, and 54 cases of the illness have been reported locally, public health officials announced Tuesday. The latest death prompted the county health department to renew warnings for people to take precautions and reduce their exposure to mosquitoes, which can transmit the virus through their bites. Health officials said the two who died were both in their 80s and lived in the southeastern part of the county.
September 25, 2012 | By Jon Bardin
Good news, pimple poppers: The solution to your acne problem may already be all over your face. A new study has found that a specific group of benign viruses that live alongside zit-causing bacteria have the power to stop acne before it starts. The bacterium Propionibacterium acnes generally causes acne, which lives inside skin pores. When people hit puberty, an increase in hormones leads to a drastic increase in P. acnes , which in turn causes an inflammatory response on the skin.
September 10, 2012 | By Jon Bardin, Los Angeles Times
West Nile virus has caused symptoms in at least 1,993 Americans and killed 87 so far this year. And it's unlikely that this virus, which humans contract from infected mosquitoes, will be getting any less dangerous in the near future. Though the CDC believes that this year's caseload has probably peaked, a group of public health officials writing in the new edition of Annals of Internal Medicine explains why West Nile has been so deadly this year. West Nile virus made its first appearance in the United States in 1999, when the virus, which had previously affected people in Uganda, Algeria and Romania, arrived in New York City.
August 30, 2012 | By Thomas H. Maugh II, Los Angeles Times
 In what is almost certainly a medical first, a physician from my hometown of St. Joseph, Mo., has identified a new viral disease thought to be transmitted by ticks. The virus  is related to hantaviruses, which have recently caused at least two deaths at Yosemite National Park, but so far only two confirmed cases have been observed. Because the two farmers who contracted the virus live 60 miles apart, however, researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suspect there are probably many more unrecognized cases.
August 24, 2012 | By Rosie Mestel, Los Angeles Times
It's a bad West Nile virus season.   Here are some basic facts about the virus and some things you can do to protect yourself, gleaned from a paper in the Journal of the American Medical Assn. by Dr. Robert W. Haley of the division of epidemiology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. Most people don't get sick from the virus, which is carried by mosquitoes that have bitten infected birds. About 80% of those people who are infected by a mosquito bite will not even have any symptoms.
August 21, 2012 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON -- Texas public health officials called in experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week to help control the worst outbreak of West Nile virus in the country. Dallas County is the epicenter of the outbreak, with 262 West Nile infections reported (20 last weekend) and 10 deaths. Texas has seen 586 West Nile infections reported this year and 21 deaths, according to state figures . So far this year, the CDC has reported 693 West Nile infections nationwide and 26 deaths.
August 18, 2012 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON -- Planes equipped to battle the West Nile outbreak in Texas have been grounded by rain, delaying the aerial application of pesticide targeting the deadly virus that has prompted a state of emergency in Dallas County, officials said. So far, Dallas County has reported 242 West Nile infections and 10 deaths, making it the epicenter of a statewide surge in infections. Texas has reported 552 cases and 21 deaths, by far the highest tally nationwide, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
August 18, 2012 | By Laura J. Nelson and Molly Hennessy-Fiske
Airplanes loaded with pesticide have taken to the skies above Dallas to combat the West Nile virus, which has infected at least 552 people in Texas and killed 21, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services . The number is a significant increase from years past: Last year, two died from West Nile in Texas, and seven the year before that. Medical experts, including some with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, shared tips and information on the disease with the Los Angeles Times.
August 14, 2012 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON - Dallas County officials have declared a state of emergency after the West Nile virus infected at least 190 people, killing 10, as the nation's worst outbreak hits Texas. An unusually warm winter and rainy spring in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and elsewhere in Texas has provided ideal conditions for breeding mosquitoes, West Nile carriers, officials said. The emergency declaration in Dallas clears the way for state money and resources to fight the outbreak. In the coming days the county will deploy small planes for aerial insecticide spraying over hard-hit neighborhoods, in addition to ground spraying already underway.
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