Forty million lab tests are done in B.C. annually. Each and every one is an opportunity for human error leading to patient harm.
In a bid to avert errors in collection, handling and analysis, a small team at the University of B.C. manufactures simulated specimens to send to labs across Canada... Read More
A dry fracture of a Vero cell exposing the contents of a vacuole where Coxiella burnetii are busy growing. Credit: National Institutes of Health/Department of Health and Human Services (NIAID). Read More
An animal model of the human norovirus created at the University of Michigan Health System lays the groundwork for understanding the biology of the pesky virus and developing antiviral drug treatment.
Well-known as the virus that impacts cruise ship vacations, norovirus leads to misery on lan... Read More
Well, it’s here. The mosquito-borne chikungunya virus finally trekked its way into the Western Hemisphere, arrived in the Americas, and has begun infecting Caribbean mosquitoes, confirming one of the worst fears of public health officials on this side of the prime meridian. This pathogen, notori... Read More
Deep inside the dark, damp caves of Kartchner Caverns State Park lies something that sounds more suited to a fairy tale than to a rock formation.
The so-called Big Room holds the world’s largest formation of brushite moonmilk — sometimes called “elf’s milk” — a sparkling white, creamy-looking... Read More
How rare 'words' in bacterial genes boost protein production. Scientists routinely seek to reprogram bacteria to produce proteins for drugs, biofuels and more, but they have struggled to get those bugs to follow orders. But a hidden feature of the genetic code, it turns out, could get bugs with... Read More
A clinical study published in the Lancet Infectious Diseases shows for the first time that an oral cholera vaccine (ShancholTM) provides sustained protection against cholera in humans for up to five years. The study showed the vaccine had a protective efficacy of 65% over a five-year period. The... Read More
A new study shows that common mutant forms of the deadly JC polyomavirus are not responsible for the pathogen’s main attack, which causes a brain-damaging disease in immunocompromised patients called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy. But that finding raises the ominous question of what... Read More
An ancient skin fungus that has been killing frogs, salamanders, and other amphibians may be hiding in invertebrates such as insects.
The skin fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), also known as amphibian chytrid, got attention in 1993 when dead and dying frogs began turning up in Quee... Read More
Imagine a world where greenhouse gases were reduced to a minimum, or where methane released from oil spills could be cleaned in an instant, or where we could develop fuel using only bacteria. Thanks to a discovery by UW researchers, a certain type of bacteria that lives off of methane is able to... Read More
It's an age-old search: the secret to eternal youth. For centuries, the dream of a single factor that may increase our lifespan has been at the forefront of many legends, excursions, and of course, advertising campaigns. But while this search has been fruitless for the majority of us, there is h... Read More
Researchers suspect H7N9 virus is in bird markets as human cases rise rapidly. Virologists know its name: H7N9. What they don’t yet know is whether this novel avian influenza virus — first reported in humans in China less than two weeks ago — will rapidly fizzle out, become established in animal... Read More
Finding the gene that gives barley resistance to leaf rust could benefit people who rely on the crop for food and beer.
Researchers have discovered that the gene Rph20 provides resistance to leaf rust in some barley variety adult plants.
“Leaf rust is a fungal disease that could destroy al... Read More
Scientists have discovered a “microbial Pompeii” preserved on the teeth of skeletons around 1,000 years old.
The key to the discovery is the dental calculus, or “plaque,” which preserves bacteria and microscopic particles of food on the surfaces of teeth, effectively creating a mineral tomb f... Read More
What's a virus to do when it finds itself in an inhospitable environment such as hot water? Coating itself in glass seems to not only provide protection, but may also make it easier to jump to a more favorable location to spread.
Researchers led by a group from the Center for Life in Extreme ... Read More
Some 20 percent of of South Africans lack sustainable access to water. Many have to walk a third of a mile to get clean water from a standing pump, which is often shared with 100 or more other village residents.
That's why the South African government has invested in installing more than 23,000... Read More
When a new strain of bird flu cropped up in China last winter, the billion-dollar question was whether the deadly virus could transmit between people.
Now, Chinese scientists offer the first clear evidence that the bird flu is indeed contagious, although only slightly.
A father, who became... Read More
is this increasing resistance of microorganisms ? Read More
A team of scientists, led by researchers at The Wistar Institute, has determined that it might be possible to stimulate the immune system against multiple strains of influenza virus by sequentially vaccinating individuals with distinct influenza strains isolated over the last century.
Their r... Read More
The world is in dire need of cheap drugs to combat malaria. Malaria may seem like a disease from the distant past, but world-wide, it still exacts a large toll. Even worse, today’s malaria parasites are often resistant to the standard anti-malarial drugs. Newer and more effective drugs exist, bu... Read More