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Global News

Ancestral diversity affects biomarkers of kidney function, study finds

June 3, 2021
DNA methylation (DNAm) is known to be linked with kidney function, but earlier research had not revealed whether human diversity affects this association. Now, a study has reported several new trans-ethnic and ethnic-specific DNAm associations with kidney function. This is an important finding for public health because it informs future steps to understand and address epigenomic diversity.

Gillings School students on the front lines of humanitarian health

June 1, 2021
The UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health launched the Humanitarian Health Initiative to leverage the School’s global health expertise in support of humanitarian efforts around the world. A new series of internships tapped students to contribute to HHI efforts.

Findings from Kenya: Male circumcision reduces HPV infections

May 10, 2021
It’s well-established that male circumcision reduces the risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in men. A recent study from Kenya, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, finds that male circumcision also reduces men’s risk of infection with human papillomavirus (HPV).

Untethering mothers: Soft, comfortable sensors are first to comprehensively monitor pregnant women and their babies without wires

May 10, 2021
The first technology to link a birthing parent’s physical position during labor with vital signs is comprised of three soft, flexible wireless sensors that allow for greater movement. The devices were tested alongside traditional monitoring systems in both high- and low-resource settings, and researchers report, "Our wireless devices actually exceed the capabilities of monitoring systems currently used in top hospitals." The technology also could be used for remote monitoring between in-person appointments.

Researchers develop method for evaluating long-term COVID-19 vaccine efficacy

April 27, 2021
The large-scale deployment of effective vaccines is globally recognized as the best way to end the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the high efficacy reported for vaccines currently in use — like Pfizer and Moderna — is based on an average follow-up time of only about two months after the second dose. The question remains: Will people need booster vaccinations?

New ozone air pollution maps support Global Burden of Disease study

March 8, 2021
New research led by UNC Gillings School students and faculty has mapped global ground-level ozone concentrations by year using a data fusion. This is the first time this method has been applied to ozone observations globally. The findings were used by the Global Burden of Disease 2019 study, which estimated that about 365,000 people around the world died in 2019 from exposure to ozone pollution.