A panel of experts at Japan's Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry decided Monday to start producing a vaccine for the H7N9 strain of avian influenza following a number of reported cases of human infections in China.
The ministry will make the vaccine based on a vaccine strain produced by the National Institute of Infectious Diseases, while seeking cooperation from vaccine makers. Production work will start within this month at the earliest.
The ministry will first use the vaccine for animal tests and then decide whether to conduct clinical trials on humans after examining the results of the animal tests.
About 1,000 people lined up for the opening of Starbucks in Tottori City on Saturday morning. Tottori Prefecture was the final frontier for the popular coffee shop chain that now has more than 1,000 stores in Japan's 47 prefectures. (Japan Today)
Fugu pufferfish that make beautiful "crop circles" on the seabed off Amami-Oshima island in Kagoshima Prefecture have been chosen as one of the top 10 new species for 2015 by an international research institute, according to the National Museum of Nature and Science. (The Japan News)
In a crackdown on overcharging of customers, Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Friday announced the bust of two hostess clubs in Shinjuku Ward for overcharging customers, reports the TBS News (May 22). (Tokyo Reporter)
Pedestrian crosswalk laws are all over the place no matter where you go. What's considered jaywalking varies by country, and in the U.S. each state has its own laws for exactly how far the pedestrian needs to have crossed on the crosswalk before you have to stop. (rocketnews24.com)
Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Wednesday announced the arrest of multiple organized crime and motorcycle gang members for participation in a brawl that erupted last year in Kita Ward, reports the Sankei Shimbun (May 20). (Tokyo Reporter)
A Japanese man who says he was deceived into carrying someone else's bag on a flight into Indonesia was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for smuggling methamphetamine into the country with harsh drug laws. (Japan Today)