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Prominent Virologists Want U.S. Advisory Board to Take a Second Look at Controversial Flu Papers

A group of seventeen virologists is asking a U.S. government biosecurity advisory board to reconsider its controversial recommendation that two research teams omit key details from papers in press at Science and Nature. They note that the H5N1 fatality rate quoted widely is incorrect, and that ... Read More

48% of Retail Chicken Contaminated with E. Coli

A recent test of packaged raw chicken products bought at grocery stores across the country found that roughly half of them were contaminated with the bacteria E. coli.

E. coli, which the study said was an indicator of fecal contamination, was found in 48 percent of 120 chicken products bought... Read More

Legal opinion: H5N1 research and the limits of government regulation of science

John D. Kraemer, JD, MPH, assistant professor of health systems administration at Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health Studies, and Lawrence O. Gostin, the Linda D. and Timothy J. O’Neill Professor of Global Health Law and faculty director of the O'Neill Institute for National and Gl... Read More

TWiV 182 Letters

Joe writes:


Vince, here is the text of my post on Peter S site. I was disappointed in the quality of his article as I have much previous experience with his work and see him as the "David Baltimore of Risk Communication". If you could get him on as a guest you would e... Read More

Exploring HIV - Illustration by David S. Goodsell

If we can visualize a protein's shape, we can learn much more about how it functions and how we might block its activity. This was the guiding principle behind an NIH initiative launched 25 years ago to spur the discovery of HIV-related protein structures. Structures produced through the program... Read More

Arabidopsis leaf injected with a pathogen

This is a magnified view of an Arabidopsis thaliana leaf eight days after being infected with the pathogen Hyaloperonospora arabidopsidis, which is closely related to crop pathogens that cause 'downy mildew' diseases. It is also more distantly related to the agent that caused the Irish potato fa... Read More

Study Debunks Common Myth That Urine Is Sterile

Researchers have determined that bacteria are present in the bladders of some healthy women, which discredits the common belief that normal urine is sterile. These findings were published in the April issue of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology by researchers at Loyola University Chicago Strit... Read More

TWiM 34 Letters

Peter writes:

Dear TWiM Team


I see that some action is now being taken in America against the non-therapeutic use of antibiotics as livestock growth promoters:


Read More

Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Bareilly Infections Associated with Spicy Tuna Rolls

Collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health agencies indicate that a frozen raw yellowfin tuna product, known as Nakaochi Scrape, from Moon Marine USA Corporation is the likely source of this outbreak of Salmonella Bareilly infections. Nakaochi Scrape is tuna b... Read More

TWiV 188: Haggis, single malt, and viruses



Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Mass... Read More

TWiV 184 Letters

Apoptosis writes:


A video of 'Every Major's Terrible: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LdyoGruec88&a... Read More

Prosthogonimus macrorchis

Prosthogonimus macrorchis, a flatworm poultry parasite.

A digenetic trematode (family Prosthogonimidae) located in the oviduct and bursa fabricii of poultry in North America, particularly common in states bordering the Great Lakes. (http://www.medilexicon.com) Credit: Mr. Spike Walker

2010... Read More

Dip Chip biosensor uses microbes to instantly detect almost any toxic substance

Once upon a time, tasters were employed by the well-to-do, in order to check that their food or drink wasn't poisonous. Today, there are electronic biosensors that can do more or less the same thing. Unfortunately, as was no doubt sometimes the case with the tasters, the biosensors can’t always ... Read More

Is it Ebolavirus or Ebola virus?

When I drafted my article for TakePart (Don’t Panic – Ebola Isn’t Heading For You), I used the term ‘ebolavirus’ throughout, but the editors changed every instance to ‘Ebola virus’. Understanding which term is correct is far more complicated than you might imagine. Read More

MRSA Staph Strain Developed Drug Resistance in Your Burger: Research demonstrates the need to use antibiotics sparingly in food production, researchers say

A bacteria strain that causes a hard-to-treat staph infection probably developed its antibiotic resistance in food animals, a team of scientists announced Tuesday.

The strain of staph, known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA CC398, most often infects farm workers who com... Read More

The microbiologist: Tweaking genes to help corals survive climate change

Kim Ritchie fell into coral research as an undergraduate, got a Ph.D. in genetics and was doing post-doctoral research in Panama when she lost her funding. With the ideal training for biotech, however, she slipped right into a startup. But when the company went bankrupt, she jumped back into res... Read More

Do Gut Microbes Travel From Person to Person?

It’s an exciting time for ecologists who study microbes. DNA sequencing has grown so cheap and fast that they can run around identifying bacteria living just about anywhere they can reach with a cotton swab. Turns out, bacteria are everywhere, even in the cleanest houses, and scientists are star... Read More

Discover Interview: Tullis Onstott Went 2 Miles Down & Found Microbes That Live on Radiation

Bacteria found in gold mines and frozen caves show the extreme flexibility of life, and hint at where else we might find it in the solar system.

The first time Tullis Onstott ventured underground, he squeezed into an elevator with dozens of South African gold miners and descended a mile into ... Read More

H5N1 Bird Flu Pandemic Potential Revealed

Two papers published this week, and one last month, reveal the pandemic potential of H5N1 "bird flu". One identifies four, another identifies five, genetic changes the virus would have to undergo before it could spread easily in humans, and the third paper suggests some of these changes are alre... Read More

Explore the Human Microbiome [Interactive]

Learn about the bacteria, fungi and other micro-organisms that maintain human health.

The body contains 10 times more bacteria, fungi and other micro-organisms than human cells. Most of these species are harmless—although they can still cause illness if they wind up in the wrong place. In add... Read More

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