In a new paper published Jan. 21 in the journal Science, a team of researchers led by Microbiology and Immunology professor Blossom Damania, PhD, has shown for the first time that the Kaposi sarcoma virus has a decoy protein that impedes a key molecule involved in the human immune response.
T... Read More
A handful of bacterial genes crucial to survival were successfully replaced by artificial ones in a new synthetic-biology experiment.
It’s not clear how the synthetic genes rescued the doomed E. coli bacteria, which had several important sequences of DNA knocked out of its genome. But scienti... Read More
To defend microbial attacks, the human body naturally produces a group of antibiotics, called defensins. An interdisciplinary team of biochemists and medical scientists has now deciphered the mechanism of action of a defensin, hitherto looked upon as exhibiting only minor activity. Their results... Read More
The fate of smallpox is once again on the agenda of the World Health Organization, which is considering whether to destroy the last known samples of the deadly virus, currently held in labs in the U. S. and Russia.
Some countries want to get rid of the smallpox strains so they can't be used a... Read More
Hearing loss in a child may have links to a virus that Mom got while she was pregnant, according to a new study.
In kids that had some degree of hearing loss, about 9 percent also had cytomegalovirus (CMV) at birth, says a new study in the Archives of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
... Read More
Chemists at Bar-Ilan University in Israel say they have developed and successfully tested "killer paper" coated with silver nanoparticles--each roughly 1/50,000 the width of a human hair--that can fight bacteria such as E. coli and S. aureus.
Described in the American Chemical Society journal... Read More
El Podcast del Microbio" Nº 151 is a resume of the article with the same name published in Moselio Schaechter's blog "Small... Read More
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have found that a known enzyme in cells protects against measles virus, likely by altering the virus's genetic material, RNA. Cells lacking the enzyme become highly vulnerable to the virus's destructive effects. The enzyme also protects against severa... Read More
Chris Upton, a contributor to the virology toolbox, has raised an important point about multiplicity of infection:
Perhaps this is a place to bring up particle to pfu ratio? The above is great for when talking about phage, for example, when the ratio approaches 1. But with something like poli... Read More
Do video games change behavior? This question may be the subject of debate for years, but researchers have now shown the answer to be yes—for microorganism behavior, at least.
A research group led by Stanford bioengineering professor Ingmar Riedel-Kruse has developed several real video games,... Read More
Haloarcula marismortui, a micro-organism that lives in the salty waters of the Dead Sea, is the proud owner of a unique metabolic pathway. So far it is only the third pathway of its kind uncovered in organisms that use oxygen, seemingly cobbled together using genes stolen from bacteria.
When ... Read More
An RNA molecule engineered to attack HIV in two different ways is showing positive results, according to a study in Science Translational Medicine. The researchers say that the molecule, which both curbs viral replication inside infected cells and neutralizes free-floating virus, could help pati... Read More
El Podcast del Microbio" Nº 150 is dedicated to the microsporidia and the virus that causes Colony Collapse Disorder. El p... Read More
George Clooney is battling the potentially fatal tropical disease malaria, it was revealed last night.
The 49-year-old star contracted the illness in Sudan, north-east Africa, which he has visited twice in the past three months. He was last there just a week ago.
He was there in December ... Read More
Transmission of prion brain diseases such as bovine spongiform enecephalopathy (BSE) – also known as mad cow disease – and human variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) is generally attributed to the consumption of the brain or organ meat of infected animals but new research demonstrates lambs ... Read More
Another 142 deaths have been recorded in the UK in the past week from people with flu, bringing the total death toll since October to 254.
However, the Health Protection Agency (HPA) said the majority of these new deaths did not occur in the past seven days, but were the result of delays in r... Read More
NIAID-funded scientists completed a study on evolution of Yersinia pestis...Researchers analyzed one of the largest collections ever assembled of the bacteria that causes plague. Read More
El plasma como agente antimicrobiano ... Read More
Ebola, a virus that causes deadly hemorrhagic fever in humans, has no known cure or vaccine. But a new study by University of Illinois at Chicago scientists has uncovered a family of small molecules which appear to bind to the virus's outer protein coat and may inhibit its entry into human cells... Read More
Converting the code contained in genes to the proteins that make up a living organism is one of the most important and highly regulated tasks performed within a cell. A new tool from Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) scientists is offering researchers a new ability to freeze that process at... Read More