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TWiM 71 Letters

Zachary writes:


How long does it take to become a microbiologist?


Tim writes:


I'd never heard of magnetotactic bacteria before and thought perhaps you guys might find this interesting. Not sure if you've mentioned these on TWIM before,... Read More

Longer Screening Intervals Possible With HPV-Based Tests

A new study from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden finds that testing for human papilloma virus (HPV) allows for longer time between screening tests when compared to cytology-based testing. The study is published in the scientific journal British Medical Journal (BMJ).

Cervical screening progra... Read More

New Infection Control Recommendations Could Make White Coats Obsolete

In a move to reduce health care associated infections, certain attire for health care professionals, including the traditional white coat, could become a thing of the past.

"White coats, neckties, and wrist watches can become contaminated and may potentially serve as vehicles to carry germs f... Read More

Dispersal Patterns Key to Invasive Species' Success

In 1859 an Australian farmer named Thomas Austin released 24 grey rabbits from Europe into the wild because it “could do little harm and might provide a touch of home, in addition to a spot of hunting.”

By the end of the century, the rabbits had begun to overrun native ecosystems, reaching ... Read More

Hospital Water Taps Contaminated With Bacteria

New research finds significantly higher levels of infectious pathogens in water from faucet taps with aerators compared to water from deeper in the plumbing system. Contaminated water poses an increased risk for infection in immunocompromised patients. The study was published in the February iss... Read More

Decoded DNA Could Help Fight Parasitic Hookworms

Going barefoot in parts of Africa, Asia, and South America contributes to hookworm infections, which afflict an estimated 700 million of the world’s poor. The parasitic worm lives in the soil and enters the body through the feet. By feeding on victims’ blood, the worms cause anemia and, in child... Read More

This Tiny Sensor Spots Salmonella In Minutes, Not Days

A new biosensor quickly detects salmonella in food and can be easily customized to detect other types of bacteria—or even different strains for the same bacterium.

The process appears to easily outperform tests that are now standard in the food industry, according to researchers at Rice Unive... Read More

Micropredators dictate occurrence of deadly amphibian disease (press release)

An international team of researchers has made important progress in understanding the distribution of the deadly amphibian chytrid pathogen. In some regions, the deadly impact of the pathogen appears to be hampered by small predators, naturally occurring in freshwater bodies. These micropredator... Read More

New Drugs Use Cell "Garbage Disposal" to Kill Bacteria

A new class of molecules called acyldepsipeptides—ADEPs—may provide a new way to attack bacteria that have developed resistance to antibiotics.

Researchers have discovered a way to increase the potency of ADEPs by up to 1,200 times. Their findings appear in the Journal of the American Chemica... Read More

Swirling and whirling: the movement of spherical bacteria

Research on bacterial movement tends to focus on the rod-shaped bacteria. With the aid of small waving flagella, each bacterial cell can push itself in the direction it wishes to go. They can also move in groups, forming large swarms that ripple and slide their way across Petri dishes. Spherical... Read More

Pathogenic plant virus jumps to honeybees

A viral pathogen that typically infects plants has been found in honeybees and could help explain their decline. Researchers working in the U.S. and Beijing, China report their findings in mBio, the online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

The routine screening of ... Read More

BacterioFiles Micro Edition 151 - Morels Make Microbial Meals

This episode: Fungi herd and raise bacteria for slaughter!


(13.2 MB, 14.4 minutes)


Show notes: 
News item/ Read More

Bridges Across the Periplasmic Moat

Gram-negative bacteria pose a particular challenge to any enterprising phage. First the phage is met by the outer membrane (OM)—a barrier to surmount that also can be used as a convenient handgrip for adsorption. Next hazard is the nuclease-infested periplasm with its jungle of peptidoglycan. An... Read More

TWiV 268: Transmission is inevitable

Unable to embed Rapid1Pixelout audio player. Please double check that:  1)You have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.  2)This web page does not have any fatal Javascript errors.  3)The audio-player.js file of Rapid1Pixelout has been included.

Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Alan Dove, Read More

Viral fiber art

Viruses inspire many different types of art, but I was unaware of the number of people who make viruses out of fiber! Keep reading for some photographs of what I have found. Read More

Creative "Extra Credit" Projects in Microbiology!

In this blog entry, I explore how students can use their creativity to learn microbiology in innovative and often artistic ways. It makes learning more personal! Read More

Extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis hovers threateningly at Australia’s door

Hello dear TWIM'ers!

Firstly I would like to apologize in advance for my poor English skills since my native language is Portuguese. This past few years much has been the attention towards drug resistant bacteria. I am aware that a couple of your podcast touched this subject, but a few weeks ... Read More

Potential treatment for drug-resistant H7N9 influenza virus

The novel avian H7N9 influenza virus has caused more than 130 human infections with 43 deaths in China. New research, conducted under the supervision of Kansas State University's Juergen Richt, is showing promise in helping to fight this deadly virus.

"Emergence of a novel drug-resistant H7N9... Read More

Poison-breathing bacteria

Buried deep in the mud along the banks of a remote salt lake near Yosemite National Park are colonies of bacteria with an unusual property: they breathe a toxic metal to survive. Researchers from the University of Georgia discovered the bacteria on a recent field expedition to Mono Lake in Calif... Read More

Guinea Worm Said to Infect Few in 2013

Only 148 cases of Guinea worm disease were found in the world in 2013, a 73 percent drop from the 542 cases found one year earlier, the Carter Center announced Thursday.

Along with polio, Guinea worm is one of two diseases hovering on the brink of extinction, with fewer than 1,000 cases annua... Read More
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