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Frederick C. Neidhardt (1931 − 2016) An Obituary

A towering figure in microbiology, our friend Fred Neidhardt died on October 7, 2016 at his re­tire­ment home, the Academy Village near Tucson AZ. He made fundamental and abiding con­tri­bu­tions to research, teaching, academic administration, and social issues. In each, he left deep-root­ed mar... Read More

Zika virus: The outbreak in Asia

How widespread is Zika in South East Asia? At least 19 countries and areas in the region have reported locally transmitted cases since 2007, according to the WHO. The majority - 13 - reported their cases this year. Thailand has recorded some 350 cases and Singapore nearly 400, including pregnant... Read More

Virus steals black widow poison gene to help it attack

For the first time a virus that targets bacteria has been found to have genes lifted from non-bacterial cells – those of the black widow spider. Read More

Cancer & Infectious Diseases: Bacterial Proteins/Peptides for Therapy and Prevention

Ananda Chakrabarty, PhD, Distinguished University Professor, University of Illinois College of Medicine at Chicago, discuses how certain pathogenic bacteria, pseudomonas aeruginosa and neisseria menigitidis, secrete protein weapons (azurin and laz) to fight cancer, providing our next generation ... Read More

Diverse host pathogen interactomes for 17 species of bacteria, spirochetes, viruses, fungi and protozoa

The Host pathogen interactomes include the Bornavirus; Borrelia Burgdorferi; Candida albicans; Chlamydia Pneumoniae ; Cryptococcus Neoformans; Ebola virus; Epstein-Barr virus; Helicobacter pylori; Hepatitis C virus; Herpes simplex (HSV-1); HERV-W; Human cytomegalovirus; Influenza A virus; Porphy... Read More

After Hurricane Matthew, Cholera Becomes a Concern

Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti on October 4, 2016, and the southeast United States two days later, leaving tens of thousands without power, transportation, and in the worst cases, homes. Because of its extreme poverty, and its continuing recovery from previous natural disasters, Haiti is looking at... Read More

Arkansas Investigates Mumps Outbreak With More Than 400 Possible Cases

The Arkansas Department of Health is investigating a mumps outbreak that may have infected hundreds of people.

A total of 427 suspected cases of mumps are being investigated in the state, with the majority of them children, the department reported on Friday.

More than 30 schools in the sta... Read More

Four biting insect–borne viruses that you may not have heard about are now worrying researchers

Disease detectives are on the lookout for obscure viruses that can be spread among people by traveling insects, and quickly become a widespread problem. Scientific papers are filled with illnesses to watch. Four particular viruses now stand out to virologists and epidemiologists, although it is ... Read More

Scientists Identify Potential Antivirals Against Chikungunya

Chikungunya virus has caused two recent massive outbreaks sickening millions of people. Now a team of researchers has shown that several existing compounds have potent activity against the critical CHIKV protease enzyme. The research is published October 10 in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemothera... Read More

Phenotyping Microbial Cells: How and Why by Barry Bochner, Biolog, Inc.

Barry Bochner with Biolog, Inc., presents an ASM Virtual Lecture on phenomics, a relatively new technology that can be applied with diverse microbial cells to expand our understanding of the effect of genetic or environmental changes on cells.

ASM’s virtual lectures are conducted by fellows ... Read More

Pseudomonas aeruginosa – the molecular tools of a bacterial survivor

The bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa can thrive in environments as different as the moist, warm tissue in our lungs, and the dry, nutrient-deprived surface of an office wall. Such adaptability makes it problematic in healthcare – where it causes infections in cases of cystic fibrosis, cancer, HIV... Read More

Zika likely to spread in Asia Pacific: WHO

The Zika virus is set to spread through Asia, the World Health Organization warned Monday, with hundreds of cases reported in Singapore and two Thai babies diagnosed with Zika-linked microcephaly.

The mosquito-borne virus has been detected in 70 countries worldwide including at least 19 count... Read More

Antibiotic history of a hospital bed may increase a patient’s risk of infection

If the previous occupant of a hospital bed received antibiotics, the next patient who uses that bed may be at higher risk for a severe form of infectious diarrhea, according to a new study.

Clostridium difficile (C. diff) diarrhea causes 27,000 deaths each year in the U.S. Hospital patients t... Read More

Using satellite imagery to improve vaccination coverage

Looking for population shifts on satellite images could be a way to deliver vaccines and prevent or control disease outbreaks, a new study finds.

The findings, published in Scientific Reports, are based on analysis of satellite images, vaccine records, and measles case reports.

The researc... Read More

NYT - I’m a Doctor. If I Drop Food on the Kitchen Floor, I Still Eat It.

Aaron E. Carroll, professor of pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine, discusses the five-second rule about dropping food on the floor and still eating it. He reminds us that we touch lots of dirty surfaces everyday, from cell phone screens to money and even the kitchen sink sponge.... Read More

Cyanophages: Maximizing the Photo– and Redirecting the –Synthesis

Daniel Haeusser, an Assistant Professor in the Biology De­part­ment of Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, discusses the misconception of assuming that photosynthesis exists as single process of strict coupling between energy conversion and carbohydrate production. Read More

BacterioFiles 271 - Dictyostelium Delivers DNA Deathtraps

This episode: Slime molds have special cells that capture and kill bacteria using traps made of DNA!


(11.2 MB, 12.25 minutes)


Show notes: 



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Professor, graduate student unravel mystery of bacteria's antibiotic resistance

A popular antibiotic called rifampicin, used to treat tuberculosis, leprosy, and Legionnaire’s disease, is becoming less effective as the bacteria that cause the diseases develop more resistance.

One of the mechanisms leading to rifampicin’s resistance is the action of the enzyme Rifampicin m... Read More

How cells take out the trash—phosphoarginine deciphered

Cells never forget to take out the trash. It has long been known that cells tag proteins for degradation by labelling them with ubiquitin, a signal described as "the molecular kiss of death". Tim Clausen's group at the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) in Vienna identified an analo... Read More

Autophagy, Illustrated (infographic)

Earlier this week, Yoshinori Ohsumi was awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his work on the underlying mechanisms of autophagy—the process by which cells break down and recycle their own contents. How does autophagy work? Here are the basics, as drawn for the article “How ... Read More
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