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Celeb Vaccine Wars: Peet Beats Maher

"Comedian Bill Maher advises against vaccinations. But actress Amanda Peet--and Dr. Bill Frist--have it right: vaccines are good," Steve Mirsky comments in Scientific American's 60 Second Science podcast.


"In the celebrity vaccine wars, I’m siding with actress Amanda Peet. And comedia... Read More

Could Influenza-like illnesses misrepresent the gravity of actual influenza?

In a guest editorial published in BMJ's Clinical Evidence by Tom Jeffereson, Coordinator for the Cochrane Vaccines Field, Rome, Italy, he concludes, after looking at data from the control arms of 95 influenza vaccine trials involving 1 million subjects over the course of four decades, that influ... Read More

Researchers Identify Workings of L-Form Bacteria

Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have for the first time identified the genetic mechanisms involved in the formation and survival of L-form bacteria. Their findings are described in a study published October 6 in the journal PLoS ONE.

L-form bacteria, which w... Read More

Tracking Counterfeit Anti-malarial Drugs in Southeast Asia

Smithsonian magazine has published a feature on tracking counterfeit malarial drugs and attempts to shut down the black market industry.

"Southeast Asia is awash in counterfeit medications, none more insidious than those for malaria, a deadly infectious disease that is usually curable if tre... Read More

Oct 15 is Global Handwashing Day

Global Handwashing Day starts October 15, 2009. This international awareness day is brought to you by the Academy for Educational Development, CDC, UNICEF and several other partners. The strategy for the United States is being led by the U.S. Coalition for Child Survival which is preparing a med... Read More

Calcified hyphal strands

Calcified hyphal strands from lesion of hyphomyces destruens Read More

Swine flu vaccine shunned despite availability

Vaccination against swine flu has started in the US and will soon begin in Europe, but many of those who should be first in line are having second thoughts.

Healthcare workers are a top priority for vaccination because they can infect vulnerable people and because their services are vital in ... Read More

Rare Frog Species Bear the Brunt of Chytrid, a Deadly Fungal Disease

Hope for frog conservation got bleaker with a recent study showing that fungus-associated extinction is reducing amphibian biodiversity in Central America. Threats to wildlife survival, such as habitat loss and climate change, tend to strike some species harder than others, and the threat of chy... Read More

A Conversation With Carol W. Greider On Winning a Nobel Prize in Science

This interview by the New York Times with new Nobel Prize winner Dr. Carol Greider provides an interesting glimpse into the making of a scientist and her work with telomeres and cells as well as the overall acceptance of women in science. Read More

Understanding cell organization

Franklin M. Harold, Department of Microbiology, University of Washington has authored an interesting guest post on www.SmallThingsConsidered.us that examines the process of cell structural organization and assembly:

"Structural organization is one of the most conspicuous features of cells, a... Read More

Important Defence Against Stomach Ulcer Bacterium Identified

"A special protein in the lining of the stomach has been shown to be an important part of the body’s defence against the stomach ulcer bacterium Helicobacter pylori in a new study from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg. The research team has shown that a protein called MUC1... Read More

In 1918 Pandemic, Another Possible Killer: Aspirin

The 1918 flu epidemic was probably the deadliest plague in human history, killing more than 50 million people worldwide. Now it appears that a small number of the deaths may have been caused not by the virus, but by a drug used to treat it: aspirin.

Dr. Karen M. Starko, author of one of the e... Read More

'After water, check for life on moon'

Noted astrophysicist Jayant Narlikar has urged that the moon be scanned for micro-organisms in its environment, especially in areas where traces of water have been found. Speaking during a lecture on ‘Searching for micro-life in the earth’s atmosphere’ in Goa on Sunday, Mr Narlikar said the disc... Read More

The Claim: Always Wash Your Hands With Hot Water, Not Cold.

With swine flu sweeping across the country, health officials are reminding Americans to wash their hands often to reduce the spread of the disease.

Soap and warm water have long been said to prevent the spread of infections, but is warm or hot water really more effective than cold?

In its ... Read More

Researchers discover RNA repair system in bacteria

In new papers appearing this month in Science and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, University of Illinois biochemistry professor Raven H. Huang and his colleagues describe the first RNA repair system to be discovered in bacteria. This is only the second RNA repair system disc... Read More

Is a Virus the Cause of Fatigue Syndrome

"Chronic fatigue syndrome has long been a medical mystery and the subject of debate, sometimes bitter, among doctors, researchers and patients. It affects at least one million Americans, causing extreme fatigue, muscle and joint pain, sleep problems, difficulty concentrating and other symptoms. ... Read More

Interview with Paul Turner - The Evolution of Disease

"Paul Turner received his Ph.D. in 1995 from the Center for Microbial Ecology, at Michigan State University. He did postdoctoral work at the National Institutes of Health, University of Valencia in Spain, and University of Maryland, College Park. Dr. Turner is currently Associate Professor of Ec... Read More

Unusual Spider Species Passes Up Live Prey for Plants

Vegetarianism is not exactly what springs to mind when considering spiders, which usually rely on web spinning and other finely tuned techniques to catch and eat other creatures. But one spider has now been observed to feed mostly on plants, shattering the common assumption that all spiders are ... Read More

Hymenomonas sp.

Phase contrast flash of Hymenomonas sp., a coccolithophorid phytoflagellate Read More

H1N1 Critical Illness Mostly Affects Young Patients and Is Often Fatal

H1N1 critical illness mostly affects young patients and is often fatal, according to the results of a Canadian and Mexican study and an editorial published online October 12 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

"Between March and July 2009, the largest number of confirme... Read More

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