Africa

Google aims to connect one billion more people to Internet

Google, the world's most popular Internet search firm, is planning to connect as many as one billion more people from remote areas of the world to Internet using blimps, masts and satellites.

The Internet search giant is reportedly working on creating high-speed wireless networks in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia with the help of high-altitude blimps, masts and satellites capable of transmitting signals across hundreds of square kilometers.

New type of mosquito develops

A new type of mosquito has been discovered by the scientists. It has found out to have been a member of subgroup Anopheles gambiae. This is the same group of insects which is responsible for spreading diseases like malaria and has been quite active in Africa.

The report came out in science journal, Science, where the researchers have said that this kind of mosquito is quite susceptible to spreading of parasites. It is a great matter of concern since the information about them is quite little.

Comcast decides to boost diversity efforts to get Comcast-NBCU deal approved

Comcast Corp said that it would add four new cable networks owned or partly owned by African-Americans within a time period of 8 years if its proposed merger with General Electric Co's NBC Universal is allowed to take place.

Apart from that, the cable giant would expand an existing Asian-American channel to cover more markets, and would roll out a new English-language channel targeting Asian-Americans.

Solar-Powered Device for Measuring Blood Pressure

Scientists have been able to develop a device, which can help in an accurate measurement of the blood pressure of a person. The new device would allow tests to be affordable for people living in low-income countries, the best thing about the device being it is powered by solar energy.

The accurateness of the solar-powered device has been stated to be just as good as the current device, which measures the systolic blood pressure. The reason, why the device would be beneficial in low income countries is because it does not require batteries, which are very expensive in low income countries.

Quick Evolution of Malaria Mosquito Makes Controlling it Harder

Research has found that two strains of Africa’s most common malaria mosquito are speciating—creating new populations with different characteristics and thus evolving into new species.

Scientists studied the Anopheles gambiae mosquito, which is the primary cause of malaria spreading in sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Maria Lawniczak, a member of the team from Imperial College London, says that the findings show that mosquitoes are evolving even more quickly than scientists had thought.

Africa Witnesses a Slight Increase in Life Expectancy Rates

Life expectancy rates in African countries, which came dwindling down in the 90s due to the spread of the deadly HIV/AIDS virus have finally seen the light of day and have reported a meager increase in the previous couple of years. The information regarding the slight increase in life expectancy rates was revealed by the United Nations in a report presented on Wednesday.

More aid needed to fight child hunger in Chad - UN

Recent facts suggest that more than a quarter of children in parts of Chad are hunger stricken despite getting over the famine issues in the Sahel region of Africa.

UNICEF on Friday is urging for donations to get more funding. Help groups had previously warned of the mishaps which were expected to fall near the Sahara desert that comprises of regions like Mauritania, Chad, Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso and northern Nigeria.

HIV Infection Rate is Decreasing in Sub-Saharan Africa

As per a new report by UNAIDS, the HIV infection rate has come down by 20% in more than 20 worst-affected nations in sub-Saharan Africa during the period 2001-09.

The United Nations agency states that this positive trend is a step closer towards achieving the Millennium Development Goal 6 (MDG 6).

The report mentions that most significant reduction has been noticed in nations like Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Zimbabwe, Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia, and Ethiopia.

Bank of Beirut to Acquire Two Banks in September

Bank of Beirut SAL is planning to acquire two banks in Africa and Asia having around $1 billion each in assets by this September.  Chairman Salim Sfeir said that the decision is making way in view of the rising lending stagnant deposits. He, however, declined to name the banks.

“The Lebanese banking industry is becoming saturated and banks don’t have all the opportunities you’d like to have in Lebanon”, he said.

Finally, a vaccine to keep TB away in HIV patients

Finally, a vaccine to keep tuberculosis (TB) in HIV patients at bay has become a reality.

This vaccine to seven years as took this much time in Africa. This is the first time that such a vaccine has been developed.

The results of clinical trials of this vaccine Mycobacterium vaccae (MV), scientists from Dartmouth Medical School (DMS) have reported it in the January 29 online issue of the journal AIDS. 

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