The Checkup: Researchers Developing Vaccine for Stomach Flu

A small study shows a vaccine for norovirus might be possible.

• The dang stomach flu—it’s the absolute worst, if you ask me; I’d take a head cold any day. Researchers at a Montana-based pharmaceutical company are looking into a vaccine that could make norovirus—a.k.a. the stomach flu—a thing of the past. In a small study of just 100 subjects, they tested a nasal-spray norovirus vaccine and found that, compared with those who were administered a placebo, the vaccinated subjects came down with the flu far less frequently—only 37 percent of the vaccinated got the flu versus two-thirds of those who got the placebo. Before you break out your happy dance, know that the study results are considered preliminary. And because there are so many strains of norovirus, researchers will have to develop vaccines for several of those strains before making anything available to the public. NPR has more.

• This is just crazy: A 27-year-old woman who’s been paralyzed since age 13 says a bike accident two years ago allowed her to regain use of her legs. Now, she’s up and walking.

• Update time. Last week I told you that Yaz and other popular birth control meds were being called into question by the FDA after a mounting body of research pointed to an increased risk for blood clots in users. After reviewing the research, the FDA decided that the drugs need better labeling, warning of the blood-clot risk; however, the drugs won’t be pulled from shelves. More here.