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Health Highlights: June 29, 2016

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Florida Reports First Case of Zika-Linked Birth Defect

Florida's first case of a Zika-related birth defect has been reported by state officials.

The baby, born to a woman who was infected with the mosquito-borne virus in Haiti, has microcephaly, in which the head is smaller than normal and the brain is underdeveloped, NBC News reported.

"The mother, a citizen of Haiti, came to Florida to deliver her baby," according to a state health department statement. "The department is working with the family to connect the child to services through our Early Steps program."

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking 265 women in the U.S. who were infected with Zika while pregnant. All the infections occurred during travel to other countries, NBC News reported.

There are another 216 pregnant women with Zika in territories such as Puerto Rico, where there are local epidemics of the virus.

To date, four babies in the U.S. have been born with Zika-linked birth defects and another four pregnancies have been lost to miscarriage or aborted because of birth defects, according to the CDC.

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Biden's 'Moonshot' Cancer Summit Seeks to Boost Research

A day-long cancer summit will be held Wednesday to gather ideas for the Obama administration's year-long initiative to advance cancer research.

The summit at Howard University in Washington, D.C. will be hosted by Vice President Joe Biden and is expected to attract as many as 300 people from academia, industry and advocacy groups, the Washington Post reported.

Dozens of regional summits will also be held nationwide on Wednesday.

The meetings are meant to give a boost to Biden's "cancer moonshot" effort. Partisan disputes in Congress have slowed funding while federal officials scramble to develop recommendations on how to speed up research advances, the Post reported.

Those proposals won't be ready until late summer or fall.

Cancer kills nearly 600,000 Americans a year.

Posted: June 2016


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