In this show, I report on four exciting stories: bacteria made to clean up pesticides, new findings from microbial fossils, fighting bacteria with bacteria, and cells with synthetic genomes.
Two days after her second son, Dylan, was born in 2005, Mariah Bianchi let out yet another deep-chested cough, this time in the hospital, where she was recovering from the delivery.
She had been coughing for two weeks; she had coughed so badly that her contractions started early.
A pediatr... Read More
Future pandemics of seasonal flu, H1N1 and other drug-resistant viruses may be thwarted by a potent, immune-boosting payload that is effectively delivered to cells by gold nanorods, report scientists at the University at Buffalo and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Via Fu... Read More
This photo shows a petri dish swabbed with a culture of bioluminescent marine bacteria. The bacteria give off light using a process known as quorum sensing that is controlled by four small RNA molecules within each of them.
When only one bacterium is present it has the ability to produce li... Read More
Researchers at the University of Warwick, and the Kenya Medical Research Institute, Kilifi, Kenya, have found that respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) appears to be the predominant virus detected among infants and children hospitalized in Kenya with severe pneumonia, according to a study in the Ma... Read More
(featuring former ASM President Dr. Ronald Atlas)
Efforts to implement a 'top kill,' pumping heavy mud into the broken riser pipe coming from the Deepwater Horizon oil well, are in progress, with hopeful signs. As oil experts continue to work to seal the gushing leak from the Deepwater Horizo... Read More
The Ebola virus first emerged in 1976, striking fear with the uncontrollable bleeding it causes and mortality rates up to 90 percent. Ever since then, scientists have been struggling to find a way to treat the infection or protect against it.
There has been progress, but nothing quite like t... Read More
A one-two punch by a gut parasite and viruses may help explain the mysterious decline in U.S. honeybees seen over the last four years.
Bees infected with both the fungal parasite Nosema ceranae and with any one of a handful of RNA viruses were much more likely to have come from hives on the d... Read More
The Nº 113 and 114 of "El podcast del microbio" summarize the Nature's article: "A formal test of the theory of universal common ancestry". En "El podcast del microbio" Nº 113 y 114 se resume el artículo aparecido en la revista Nature: "A formal test of the theory of universal common ancestry... Read More
If you missed the opportunity to hear Carl Wittwer talk about the history of PCR and his invention of the LightCycler, the video is now available on line.
The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) has become a fundamental tool in molecular research and clinical testing. Our presenter, Carl Witter, ... Read More
Are you looking for help and more explanations about the proper controls for PCR and how to prepare standard curves? If you are, then you may want to attend this online seminar by expert, Ian Kavanagh, from Thermo Scientific R&D. He is going to give a 30 minute presentation on the subject Tuesda... Read More
A serious shortcoming of current influenza virus vaccines is the need to reformulate them every year or two as the virus undergoes antigenic drift. Many virologists have been captivated by the idea of a more universal vaccine that would endure longer, perhaps a decade or more. The identification... Read More
"Tests in four rhesus monkeys showed that seven daily injections cured 100 percent of them. And Geisbert said the researchers gave the monkeys an extremely high dose of Ebola."
The antivirus injections were given within an hour or so after infection. They are testing to see if they can extend... Read More
A team of scientists from government, academia and private industry has developed a novel treatment that protects mice from infection with the bacterium that causes tularemia, a highly infectious disease of rodents, sometimes transmitted to people, and also known as rabbit fever. In additional e... Read More
So much for the old warning flag on a stick.
Confronting an almost unwinnable battle against E. coli and other bacteria on public beaches, Chicago and some of its suburbs have taken the fight into the digital age.
From computer models that can predict conditions where bacteria will thrive,... Read More
The H1N1 virus outbreak appears to be contained and conquered in Alabama, according to a report by WAFF.
Alabama State Health Department Spokesman Dr. Jim McVay told the news station that officials have gone three-plus weeks without seeing a confirmed H1N1 specimen brought into the lab.
"I... Read More
In a new study, a modified measles virus has shown potential for treating childhood brain tumour known as medulloblastoma.
Medulloblastoma is the most common malignant central nervous system tumour of childhood, accounting for about 20 percent of paediatric brain tumours.
These tumours ar... Read More
Some bacteria can influence the weather. Up high in the sky where clouds form, water droplets condense and ice crystal grow around tiny particles. Typically these particles are dust, pollen, or even soot from a wildfire.
But recently scientists have begun to realize that some of these little ... Read More
For nearly two decades, Public Enemy No. 1 for the food industry and its government regulators has been a virulent strain of E. coli bacteria that has killed hundreds of people, sickened thousands and prompted the recall of millions of pounds of hamburger, spinach and other foods.
But as eve... Read More
(note - this article comes from ASM's 2010 Public Communications Award winner Debora MacKenzie)
Could playing in the dirt make you smarter? Studies in mice suggest that it could.
Mice given peanut butter laced with a common, harmless soil bacterium ran through mazes twice as fast and enjoy... Read More