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Study: New HPV Vaccine is More Effective

A new vaccine against sexually transmitted human papillomavirus is more effective than the previous version and may protect against 90 percent of all cervical cancers worldwide, researchers said Wednesday.

The vaccine, Gardasil 9, is made by Merck, which also funded the study of 14,200 women aged 16-26, published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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WHO Urges Billions to Fight Neglected Tropical Diseases

The World Health Organization on Thursday urged countries to invest billions of dollars to tackle 17 neglected tropical diseases -- including dengue fever, leprosy and sleeping sickness -- which kill 500,000 people globally each year.

WHO said some 1.5 billion people across 149 countries are affected by the diseases, insisting additional investments would save lives, prevent disability, end suffering and improve productivity.

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Study: Flu Shot Protects against New Strain H7N9

The flu vaccine may not have protected most people against influenza circulating widely this season, but a study Tuesday showed it was effective against the new H7N9 strain that emerged in China in 2013.

Antibodies that protect against H7N9 avian flu make up a small portion of people's immune response to the annual flu shot, "but appear to broadly neutralize H7 viruses and represent promising new targets for therapeutic development against a wide range of influenza strains," according to the research by the University of Chicago and Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

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Study: Sperm Mutations Point to Risk for Teen Fathers

Teenage fathers are likelier to have children with health problems because of mutations in their sperm, a study said Wednesday.

Previous research had found that teens are likelier than 20- to 35-year-olds to father a child with autism, low IQ, schizophrenia or spina bifida, although the risk is low in absolute terms.

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Australia Mulls Tougher Food Screening after China Hepatitis Scare

Tougher food screening measures could be introduced in Australia with frozen berries from China linked to a growing number of hepatitis A infections, Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said Wednesday.

Nanna's and Creative Gourmet brand raspberries and mixed berries were recalled after they were linked to four infections in New South Wales and Victoria states, with poor hygiene or contaminated water at their packing factory thought to be responsible.

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Chinese Cosmetic Tourists Reap Regret in South Korea

Chinese businesswoman Chen Yili paid a South Korean hospital thousands of dollars to reshape her face in the hope she would look more like the glamorous stars she saw on television.

Instead she says she was disfigured by the operation - one of a growing number of Chinese women who claim shoddy procedures and a lack of regulation in South Korea's booming "medical tourism" industry, have left them physically scarred. 

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Study: Psychosis Five Times More Likely for Cannabis Users

A British study released Monday suggested that the risk of psychosis was five times higher for regular users of cannabis, adding to a growing body of evidence linking drug use and mental health disorders.

The six-year study published in the medical journal The Lancet reported on 780 people living in south London, 410 of whom were being treated for conditions including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

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Lab Progress Towards Drug for Auto-Immune Disease

Researchers said Monday they had pinpointed two compounds -- one naturally derived from fasting and intensive exercise -- that show promise for combating arthritis, multiple sclerosis, gout and other auto-immune diseases.

The compounds throw a wrench into a molecular mechanism that causes inflammation, a driver of these diseases, the teams reported in Nature Medicine.

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Australians Get Hepatitis A from Chinese Berries

Nine Australians have contracted hepatitis A linked with eating contaminated berries from China, with the importer apologizing Tuesday as the food scare spreads.

Manufacturer Patties Foods has recalled four products including the Nanna's and Creative Gourmet brands of mixed berries and Nanna's raspberries after infections in Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales.

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Flurry of Sign-Ups at Health Law Deadline; Web Glitch Fixed

After a computer glitch got patched up, supporters of President Barack Obama's health care law were out in force Sunday trying to get uninsured people signed up by the official deadline for 2015 coverage.

The effort had the trappings of a get-out-the-vote drive, with email reminders, telephone calls and squads of community-level volunteers.

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