Top of the Morning: The Laser that can Diagnose Malaria

Top stories from DAWNS Digest

A Laser to Diagnose Malaria?

It’s being developed by researchers at Rice University in the US. “In theory, said the inventor, Dmitri O. Lapotko, a physicist who studied laser weapons in his native Belarus, the technology can be used in a device powered by a car battery and is rugged enough to work in dusty villages. With a fiber-optic probe attached to a finger or ear lobe, the device could screen one person every 20 seconds for less than 50 cents each. If that happened, it could revolutionize malaria diagnosis. Current rapid tests require a finger prick, take 15 minutes and cost about $1. They can also spoil in hot climates.” (NYT

Situation in CAR Gets Worse, Little Aid Available 

The security situation is exacerbating an already dire humanitarian crisis. MSF is scaling back after shootings at one of its health centers, and there are now reports of a measles outbreak.  Nearly 1 million are displaced. “U.N. officials are warning the Security Council that Central African Republic is on the brink of a catastrophe, with half the population made homeless since ethnic warfare broke out. U.N. political affairs chief Jeffrey Feltman told the council Monday that about 2.2 million people throughout Central African Republic need assistance, about half the total population. About half the people of Bangui have been driven from their homes, a total of about 513,000, he said. About 100,000 are jamming a makeshift camp at the airport near the capitol. ‘The death toll outside Bangui is likely to be substantial,’ he said.” (ABC