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Chromosome’s Guardians Susceptible to UV Radiation, Yale Scientists Find

The molecular caps at the ends of chromosomes that protect humans against cancer and premature cellular aging show a surprising inability to protect themselves against ultraviolet radiation, a new Yale School of Medicine study has found.

Telomeres—the repeat sequences of DNA at the end of chr... Read More

Restricting calories may give the immune system a boost

Restricted-calorie diets have been shown in some studies to improve longevity and provide other health benefits, but many studies have focused on animals rather than humans.

A new study finds that calorie restriction may bolster the immune system in adults. Researchers from Tufts University r... Read More

BacterioFiles Episode 11

In this show, I report on four exciting stories: a probiotic bacteria that can fight cancer, bacteria in dust that affect asthma, microbes living in a lake of asphalt, and a census of marine microorganisms.

{audio}BacterioFiles|BacterioFiles|http://traffic.libsyn.com/bacteriofiles/B... Read More

Infection, kill thyself: New wound dressings drive bacteria down a suicidal path

By Rachel Ehrenberg
Scientists are turning harmful bacteria into agents of their own destruction. In an effort to create antibacterial wound dressings, a new material comes laden with microbial booby traps that are triggered by the activity of harmful bacteria, scientists report online April 20... Read More

Common virus tied to earlier death in older women

The virus in question is cytomegalovirus, or CMV, which infects most people at some point in their lives -- up to 80 percent of U.S. adults by the age of 40. In healthy people, the infection usually causes no symptoms, and is considered dangerous only for newborns infected during pregnancy and f... Read More

Polio re-introduced in Central Asia

India has exported a polio virus to Tajikistan, re-infecting the region for the first time since it was certified polio-free in 2002.

In what is the first outbreak of the crippling disease in a Central Asian country, the virus till April 22 had caused acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) in 128 chil... Read More

HIV Patients Hold Clues to Salmonella Vaccine Development

A study published in the journal Science offers a long-awaited explanation for the link between HIV infection and susceptibility to life-threatening nontyphoidal strains of Salmonella. The research, funded by the Wellcome Trust and GlaxoSmithKline, goes on to identify targets that could be pursu... Read More

Lab Stuff I Wish I Could Use In My Kitchen

Do you ever take a look at what you’re doing in the lab and think, “Wow, this would really come in handy at home?” Here are a few of the things I use in the lab that I would love to have in my kitchen:

1. Stir plates and stir bars would be incredibly useful for cooking those dishes that need ... Read More

Study: Melanin-covered nanoparticles could prevent radiation damage

Melanin-covered nanoparticles provide a novel approach to protection of bone marrow from ionizing radiation based on prevention of free radical formation by melanin, according to research published online April 24 in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology and Physics.

Ekat... Read More

Getting the Bugs Out, a New Approach to Renewable Fuels

The Geobacter bacterium could be the biofuel-generating machine of the future, producing energy-rich butanol costing as little as $2 per gallon.

A project seeking to accomplish this, headed by Derek Lovley and colleagues at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, received $1 million in fund... Read More

Aphids got their colours by stealing genes from fungi

Aphids, those sap-sucking foes of gardeners, come in a variety of colours. We usually think of them as green, but pea aphids sometimes wear a fetching red ensemble. That may not strike you as anything special; after all, lots of animals are red. But the aphid’s colour is unique in a couple of ex... Read More

Gut microbes are talking. Is your body listening?

Biologists at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have found that an altered host–microbe relationship, called dysbiosis, may be linked to inflammatory bowel disease and colon cancer as well as to obesity and diabetes. Close to a thousand different species of bacteria reside in the ... Read More

Modifying Viruses to Kill Cancer

Researchers have found a way to modify viruses so they are able to hunt down and wipe out cancer cells.

Scientists at the University of Leeds used unique markers that appear on the surface of cancer cells to engineer proteins that recognize and attach to these markers, that can be added to a ... Read More

Combination antibiotics effective against chlamydia-induced arthritis

Combination antibiotics effectively treat Chlamydia-induced reactive arthritis – a major step toward management, and possibly cure, of this disease, a federal multicenter clinical trial led by the University of South Florida College of Medicine found.

The trial, sponsored by the National Inst... Read More

Martian Gypsum May Preserve Microbe Fossils

Life on Mars, if it ever existed, may be easier to find than previously thought. New research on terrestrial rocks suggests that a type of rock common on Mars can preserve fossilized microbial life, rather than erasing evidence of it as previously thought. Read More

Development of an HIV-1 Specific Microbicide Using Caulobacter crescentus

A recent paper published in PLoS One looks at the strategy of manipulating surface proteins on the aquatic bacterium, Caulobacter crescentus, to prevent HIV infection.


The development of alternative strategies to prevent HIV infection is a global public health priority. Initial e... Read More

Measles still spreads in Europe: who is responsible for the failure to vaccinate?

It is not a secret that the goal of eliminating measles and rubella in Europe will not be met by the targeted year 2010. Over the past 10-12 years, national and international public health authorities have conducted extraordinary efforts that have led to a dramatic reduction in reported measles ... Read More

Protein shows up early in deadly cancer

A newly identified molecular marker of pancreatic cancer may help spot the disease at its earliest stages, when it can be treated more successfully with surgery.

In a report published in the online journal PLoS One, the researchers showed that a specific form of a protein called palladin is p... Read More

A Clamp for Emerging Flu Viruses: Researchers Unravel Secret of Innate Immune Response

When the human body becomes infected with new influenza viruses, the immune system rapidly activates an inborn protective mechanism to inhibit the intruding pathogen. A protein known as Mx plays an important role in this process, keeping the spread of viruses in check. Exactly how Mx accomplishe... Read More

Can a plant virus make you sick?

It has been estimated that approximately one hundred trillion bacteria colonize the human intestine. That’s about ten times the number of cells that constitute the entire human body. These bacteria are believed to have a mutualistic symbiotic relationship with their hosts. What is known about th... Read More
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