Efficacy of the 2015-2016 Flu Vaccine

Akpan Anani, Mercer University College of Pharmacy

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the influenza vaccine may reduce the incidence of flu illness by up to 60% in the overall population. [1] Data from the 2015-2016 flu season estimates that 5.1 million influenza illnesses were avoided in the United States by virtue of vaccination. [1] Each year’s vaccine profile is chosen to select for the influenza viruses most likely to abound in that given season. [1] But due to the evolution of surface antigens on the influenza virus (antigenic drift), annual epidemics can occur—necessitating constant surveillance of the strains in circulation and changes to the makeup of the vaccine as needed. [2]

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Rebranding: The Solution to Veggie Consumption?

Derek Ebot-Akoachere, Mercer University College of Pharmacy

 

An estimated 396 million adults in the world were found to be obese in 2005. This may increase to 1.12 billion in 2030 if current trends remain unabated. [1] The Food and Drug Administration is fighting to curb this health issue by food labeling and education campaigns. [2] People tend to rate foods they perceive as healthy to be less tasty [3] because they are labeled with less appealing descriptors, [4] which may render health-focused labeling counter-effective. This begs the question: what if healthy foods were labeled with more appealing descriptors?

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Is There a Link Between The Degree of Maternal Obesity and Congenital Malformations?

Derek Ebot-Akoachere, Mercer University College of Pharmacy

 

According to the United States Surgeon General, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institutes of Health, obesity is a health issue of nationwide epidemic proportions, [1] Almost one-third of women of childbearing age are considered obese [2], and obesity is associated with many pregnancy complications including congenital malformations (CMF). [3] The relationship between obesity in pregnancy and CMF has been investigated, but there is little data associating increasing severity of obesity and CMF.

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