Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Flesh-Eating Disease Is On The Rise Due To Global Warming

Scientists at the University of Hull are working on an improved treatment for a debilitating flesh-eating disease which is on the rise due to global warming.

Should global warming continue to ravage our planet at current rates, the numbers of people suffering Leishmaniasis, a flesh-eating and sometimes fatal disease will increase dramatically. Leishmaniasis is caused by a parasite transmitted via sand fly bites usually found only in tropical climates. Rising temperatures will increase the number of countries the sand fly colonises, moving further north and through Europe.

Due to travel and tourism, nations affected are already on the increase. Military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan are also exposed to the conditions associated with contracting Leishmaniasis.

Dr Ross Boyle, lead researcher on the project at the University of Hull said, “Global warming and the military presence in countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan mean that this horrific and debilitating disease is affecting more people than ever before. My co-investigator, Dr Tim Paget at the Medway School of Pharmacy, Hull PhD student Carrie-Anne Bristow and myself wanted to work towards finding a significantly better treatment.”

Source: ScienceDaily
Image courtesty University of Hull.