Prelims 2020

23rd July 2020 Daily Current Flash Cards

SAANS campaign; SeeTB; Superbugs; Inflammageing; State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020 (SOFI 2020);
By IASToppers
July 23, 2020

 

 

 

Recently, researchers have developed a small device called as ‘SeeTB’. What is the significance of this device? 

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Answer:

  • Researchers have developed a small device called as SeeTB that can be attached to a simple optical microscope to convert it into a fluorescence microscope, thus enabling better TB (Tuberculosis) diagnosis at the point-of-care.

Enrich Your Learning:

Why in News?

  • Researchers have developed a small device called as SeeTB that can be attached to a simple optical microscope to convert it into a fluorescence microscope, thus enabling better TB diagnosis at the point-of-care.

Background:

  • Tuberculosis (TB) remains a major healthcare burden for most developing countries, and India still leads the list with the largest number of cases.
  • The World Health Organization has aimed at eliminating TB by 2035, and the Indian government has vouched to do this by 2025.

Significance:

  • The device is battery operated and allows quick identification of the bacteria.
  • The team has also developed a clearing reagent called CLR which helps in thinning the collected sputum thus enhancing the bacteria detection.
  • The currently used fluorescence microscopy requires infrastructure, an air-conditioned room, trained professionals and is functional only in tertiary health care centers.
  • SeeTB can be used at the primary health care centres in the villages, and once diagnosed, the treatment can be started.
  • CLR-SeeTB is a highly economical platform and is most suited for a country like India which has a high TB burden.
  • The results during diagnosis showed that compared to fluorescence microscopy, the CLR-SeeTB system had higher sensitivity.
  • When the performance was compared against GeneXpert, another diagnosis tool that looks for DNA markers of TB bacteria, SeeTB showed improved sensitivity.
  • Also, while GeneXpert method takes about two hours, SeeTB can help find the bacteria in about 30 minutes.

3 D Printing:

  • The team used 3D printing to rapidly prototype this compact optical platform, and now are using injection moulding to produce these components in large scale.
  • This can help drastically bring down the cost, thus making it feasible for large scale distributions across the country.

Tuberculosis:

  • Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease caused by bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
  • The bacteria usually attack the lungs, but they can also damage other parts of the body.
  • TB spreads through the air when a person with TB of the lungs or throat coughs, sneezes, or talks.

 

 

 

SAANS campaign aims to mobilize people to protect children from which disease?

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Answer:

  • SAANS campaign aims to mobilize people to protect children from

Enrich Your Learning:

Why in News?

  • Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare launched SAANS, a campaign aimed at reducing child mortality due to pneumonia, which contributes to around 15% deaths annually of children under the age of five.

About SAANS:

  • SAANS stands for ‘Social Awareness and Action to Neutralise Pneumonia Successfully’.
  • It aims to mobilize people to protect children from pneumonia, and train health personnel and other stakeholders to provide prioritized treatment to control the disease.
  • Under the campaign, a child suffering from pneumonia can be treated with pre-referral dose of anti-biotic amoxicillin by Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) workers, and health and wellness centres can use pulse oximeter (device to monitor oxygen saturation)to identify low oxygen levels in the blood of a child, and if required, treat him by use of oxygen cylinders.

 

 

 

Who does release the report named ‘State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020’?

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Answer:

It is produced jointly by:

  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO),
  • International Fund for Agriculture (IFAD),
  • United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF),
  • UN World Food Programme (WFP) and
  • World Health Organization (WHO).

Enrich Your Learning:

State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020 (SOFI 2020):

  • It is the most authoritative global study tracking progress towards ending hunger and malnutrition.

Highlights of SOFI 2020:

  • It estimates that almost 690 million people went hungry in 2019 & by nearly 60 million in five years.
  • It says that the High costs and low affordability also mean billions cannot eat healthily or nutritiously.
  • The hungry are most numerous in Asia but expanding fastest in Africa followed by Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • It forecasts the COVID-19 pandemic could tip over 130 million more people into chronic hunger by the end of 2020 across the world.
  • It says that as more go hungry and malnutrition persists, achieving Zero Hunger by 2030 in doubt.
  • Overall percentage of hungry people is 8.9 % globally, but the absolute numbers have been rising since 2014.
  • It presents evidence that a healthy diet costs far more than US$ 1.90/day, the international poverty threshold.
  • According to current global estimates, in 2019,
  • 3 percent (144.0 million) of children under 5 years of age were stunted,
  • 9 percent (47.0 million) wasted and
  • 6 percent (38.3 million) overweight
  • Only in Asia and globally in upper-middle-income countries, are there enough fruits and vegetables available for human consumption to be able to meet the FAO/WHO recommendation of consuming a minimum of 400 g/person/day.
  • Shifting to healthy diets can contribute to reducing health and climate-change costs by 2030, because the hidden costs of these healthy diets are lower compared to those of current consumption patterns.

 

 

 

What do you mean by Inflammageing?

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Answer:

As one ages, inflammation throughout the body reaches higher levels. It is known as inflammageing which can inhibit immunity.

Enrich Your Learning:

Inflammageing:

Why in news?

  • Because the most severe Covid-19 cases have occurred mostly in older people, researchers are investigating whether inflammageing has a role or not in it.

About Inflammageing:

  • It is characterised by chronic low-grade inflammation, which occurs without an infection.
  • While inflammation is essential to the immune response, inflammageing is not.
  • Research has shown that this state of elevated inflammation can worsen many age-related diseases and further inhibit the response from an already declining immune system.
  • It may the trigger that causes extreme inflammatory responses, which are common in the lungs of severe Covid-19 patients.

Impact of inflammageing on immunity in ageing individuals:

  • As our immune system weakens with age, our bodily defence systems respond more slowly to bacterial and viral infections, leaving the elderly more vulnerable.
  • Reducing inflammation using anti-inflammatory drugs may provide a therapeutic strategy, not only for enhancing immunity but also for potentially improving Covid-19 outcomes in older patients.

 

 

Define the term ‘Superbugs’.

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Answer:

Superbugs are known to breed in wastewater plants and release extracellular ARGs when they are killed while disinfecting effluent.

Enrich Your Learning:

Wrap, trap and zap strategy:

  • It is a new strategy to kill antibiotic resistant bugs in wastewater.
  • It employs microspheres wrapped in graphene oxide– forming a graphene ‘shield’.
  • This graphene ‘shield’ helps to destroy antibiotic-resistant bacteria and free-floating antibiotic-resistant genes (ARGs) produced by them in wastewater treatment plants.
  • It enables water treatment towards neutralizing antibiotic-resistant ‘superbugs’.
  • It will minimize the discharge of extracellular ARGs and mitigate dissemination of antibiotic resistance from wastewater treatment plants.
  • The graphene-wrapped spheres with cores of bismuth, carbon and oxygen wrapped with nitrogen-doped graphene oxide, kill the bacteria by producing three times the amount of reactive oxygen species.
  • Wrapping improved bacterial affinity for the microspheres through enhanced hydrophobic interaction between the bacterial surface and the shell.
  • The wrapped spheres can be reused, as they are large enough to be filtered out of the disinfected effluent.
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