"... These results, gained with a novel method for blotting (E. M. Southern, manuscript in preparation), have also led to the identification of the Bam Hl recognition sequence". It is rather unusual to find unpublished work referred to in the abstract of a paper, to put it mildly. But this was e... Read More
Scientists have captured the first detailed microscopy images of ultra-small bacteria that are believed to be about as small as life can get. The existence of ultra-small bacteria has been debated for two decades, but there hasn't been a comprehensive electron microscopy and DNA-based descriptio... Read More
Call for Stories
Caring for People Infected with Ebola: Stories from the Frontlines
Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics will publish a collection of personal stories from individuals who have been at the frontlines of healthcare for Ebola patients—whether as healthcare workers, family caregivers,... Read More
Mycorrhizal fungi live in the roots of host plants, where they exchange sugars that plants produce by photosynthesis for mineral nutrients that fungi absorb from the soil. They include some of the most conspicuous forest mushrooms, including the iconic, flaming red “fly agaric,” Amanita muscaria... Read More
On July 20 a man who was ill flew on commercial planes from the heart of the Ebola epidemic in Liberia to Lagos, Nigeria's largest city. That man became Nigeria's first Ebola case—the index patient. In a matter of weeks some 19 people across two states were diagnosed with the disease (with one a... Read More
A mysterious illness that seems to have killed a farmer in Kansas has led to the discovery of a new virus last week: the Bourbon virus.
The farmer had been working on his field last spring when he got several tick bites, including one that appeared to be attached to his shoulder. A few days l... Read More
Its name means "bending over in pain." It has no treatment or vaccine. Its symptoms resemble Dengue fever. And it has infected more than 1 million people -- 155 of them fatally -- since spreading to the Americas one year ago.
The mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus has long been diagnosed in tra... Read More
As will be argued below the present definition of a prokaryote is highly unsatisfactory. To give an example: a prokaryote is "a cell or organism lacking a nucleus and other membrane-enclose organelles, usually having its DNA in a single circular molecule" (Brock, Biology of Microorganisms, 10th ... Read More
This is our first ever recommendation of an article published outside the usual scientific venues, but after all the hype we have heard about the human microbiome we were delighted to finally read a balanced account of what the research tells us and what it does not tell us. Plus, this article w... Read More
While Hollywood loves to imagine humans encountering all manner of horrific monsters in the depths of space, the greatest threat to a long-term, manned space mission may not come with tentacles, or extra mouths, or an insatiable love for human flesh. It may, in fact, be the invisible microbes t... Read More
Microbes around us is an introductory open on line course of microbiology. Key words are: bacteria, virus, biodiversity, microbial evolution, extremophiles, microbiota, rumen, nitrogen cycle, biotechnology, industrial microbiology, biodegradation, biofuel, microbial engineering, infectious disea... Read More
Just as humans utilize roads and freeways to move cars and resources around our cities, fungus use fluid networks to move nutrients and nuclei through their cells. Dr. Marcus Roper of UCLA explains how these networks function with remarkable efficiency and prevent microscopic traffic jams.
C... Read More
The Foraminifera ("forams") are among the largest and most abundant of all unicellular organisms. They can reach 20 cm in length and 18 cm in width, and the shells surrounding them are even bigger, up to 30 cm in length. They have existed in prodigious numbers that the remnants of their shells h... Read More
The pink silhouette of the fly was made by using the bacterium Escherichia coli (ATCC® 25922™), a bacterium that inhabits in a friendly manner as a part of the bowel flora within the human and animals large intestine. This bacterium can cause disease for example, on immunocompromised hosts, when... Read More
Engaging in unprotected sex with multiple partners increases the risk of contracting multiple strains of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Once inside a host, these strains can recombine into a new variant of the virus. One such recombinant variant observed in patients in Cuba appears to be much ... Read More
In research published in Nature Chemical Biology, scientists from RIKEN in Japan have discovered a surprisingly simple mechanism through which enterics can adjust to the very different oxygen environments inside the human gut and outside. This research, which was led by Shigeyuki Yokoyama and Wa... Read More
CAMP test - A presumptive identification of group B beta-hemolytic streptococci.
This a positive CAMP test indicated by the formation of an arrowhead where the Strep group B meets the Staphylococcus aureus (white middle streak).
A music video making the rounds on YouTube entitled “One Truth,” is dedicated to all of the brave researchers, healthcare workers, and others who have put their lives on the line to save people during the recent outbreak of Ebola virus disease. Pardis Sabeti, MD, DPhil, an NIH-funded New Innovat... Read More
Research teams led by Edward Yu of Iowa State University and the Ames Laboratory have described the structures of two proteins they believe pump antibiotics from bacteria, allowing the bacteria to resist medications.
One of the protein pumps, known as MtrF, is believed to be the mechanism tha... Read More
The skin microbiome is considered our first line of defense against pathogens. Across our bodies, we are covered with a diverse assemblage of bacteria. Panelists will discuss how the skin can be a harsh environment for beneficial bacteria to live on and how these suboptimal con... Read More