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Surprise! Coxiella burnetii, the agent of Q fever, has been grown in cell-free media. This is news because, along with rickettsiae and a few others, C. burnetii is the stereotypical obligate intracellular bacterial parasite. Until now, coxiellae could only be grown within a host or in host cells... Read More
The opening of a biosafety laboratory level 4, built by Boston University for the study of dangerous microbes, has been delayed again after the National Institutes of Health asked for more time to complete a safety analysis, The Boston Globe reported. The National Institutes of Health now estima... Read More
Ozone in a bag. That's the novel method being developed by the food process engineer Dr Kevin Keener, of Purdue University, Indiana, to eliminate harmful bacteria on packaged foods such as spinach, tomatoes, and whole fruit. But rather than use an ozone generator to pump it in, Keener creates th... Read More
Minnesota health officials are reporting an unusual death linked to a strain of polio once used in vaccines.
The Minnesota Department of Health said yesterday that a man, whom they did not identify, with symptoms of the paralyzing disease died last month. The officials said that he was infect... Read More
We all know that wine is the result of a microbiological process involving fermentation and yeast, but what's interesting about this story is the evidence that suggests Egyptians fortified their wine with certain herbs to treat disease symptoms. Some of the trace elements that have been found ar... Read More
New study suggests waste treatment process can have an unintended consequence of spreading of extra-hardy bacteria. "To determine if sewage-treatment plants might be a source of resistant bugs, Chuanwu and fellow researchers collected several species of the common bacteria Acinetobacter from a p... Read More
Here's a nice historical video about Antonie van Leeuwenhoek from AJ Cann of the Microbiologybytes podcast at Microbiologybytes.wordpress.com. Read More
Scientists studying how marine bacteria move have discovered that a sharp variation in water current segregates right-handed bacteria from their left-handed brethren, impelling the microbes in opposite directions. This finding and the possibility of quickly and cheaply implementing the segregati... Read More
Would adding iron to the Southern Ocean's Drake Passage promote planktonic growth that in turn would help reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere and curb global warming? Researchers on the high seas are considering the options in a post on Wired's Science blog. "While we concern ourselves ... Read More
Scientists say they have developed a fast and super-sensitive new test for ricin, a poison found in castor beans that scientists say is a prime candidate for use in bioterrorism attacks. The new method, described in research recently published in Analytical Chemistry, takes only three minutes to... Read More
Researchers have identified a new benchmark for starting drug treatment for AIDS.
"The question of when to start therapy has been a “swinging pendulum,” notes an editorial accompanying the study. The marker in question is the CD4 count, which represents how many of the cells that the AIDS vir... Read More
Great post on the symbiotic relationship between humans and microbes (aka The Microbiome). "there’s a growing consensus among scientists that the relationship between us and our microbes is much more of a two-way street. With new technologies that allow scientists to better identify and study t... Read More
An invasion of soybean aphids poses a problem for soybean farmers requiring application of pesticides, but a team of Penn State entomologists thinks a careful choice of nitrogen-fixing bacteria may provide protection against the sucking insects. Soybeans are legumes, plants that can have a symbi... Read More
A University of Leeds research team found adding dilute acetic acid - vinegar - to groundwater sites contaminated with harmful chromium compounds boosts the growth of naturally-occurring bacteria by providing an attractive food source. This is turn halps the bacteria to biodegrade the harmful co... Read More
A bill in Washington State's legislature designed to cut the spread of drug-resistant staph infections passed the Senate Monday. It requires health professionals to note on death certificates when the deadly bacteria played a role in a patient's demise. The bill is designed to aid the state in m... Read More
U.S. entomologists claim a careful choice of nitrogen-fixing bacteria might provide soybean farmers protection against an invasion of soybean aphids.
"Our results demonstrate that plant-rhizobia interactions influence plant resistance to insect herbivores and that some rhizobia strains confer... Read More
In a genetic leap that could help fast track vaccine and drug development to prevent or tame serious global diseases, DMS researchers have discovered how to destroy a key DNA pathway in a wily and widespread human parasite. The feat surmounts a major hurdle for targeting genes in Toxoplasma gond... Read More
For the first time, scientists have isolated the parasite Nosema ceranae (Microsporidia) from professional apiaries suffering from honey bee colony depopulation syndrome. They then went on to treat the infection with complete success. In a study published in the new journal from the Society for ... Read More