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Fight against superbugs goes underground

Scientists are pioneering a way of discovering new antibiotics by analysing the entire genetic blueprint of soil microbes which kill their competitors by producing natural toxins. Screening soil microbes for novel antibiotics is a traditional method of discovering new drugs but the rise of resis... Read More

Microbes implicated in Alzheimer's

The peptide beta amyloid has long been thought to be involved in Alzheimer's disease, though there is a great deal of controversy about whether it's a primary cause of the disease, or merely a symptom. Now, Rudolph Tanzi and his group at Massachusetts General Hospital have shown it might not be ... Read More

French hospitals make progress in battle against MRSA through large-scale prevention and monitoring

A group of French hospitals has reduced the burden of MRSA (methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus) among patients by more than a third after a 15-year-long multi-prong control program, according to a new report published online March 22 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

The 38 teach... Read More

NIH Funding Immunodeficiency Disease Grants

The National Institutes of Health will use its Small Research Grant program to fund science into rare immunodeficiency diseases, including studies focused on molecular knowledge, biomarkers, and diagnostic technologies.

Funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and t... Read More

Tuberculosis: Drug-Resistant Strains Still Spreading at Deadly Rates, W.H.O. Report Says

Drug-resistant tuberculosis killed about 150,000 people in 2008, and half of all the world’s cases are thought in be in China and India, the World Health Organization said in a report last week.

No one knows the exact number of cases of the two types of drug-resistant TB, called MDR and XDR f... Read More

Sucker-Like Structures on the Pathogenic Amoeba Naegleria fowleri

Scanning electron microscopy photograph of a human isolate of Naegleria fowleri amoeba grown in axenic culture displaying sucker-like structures, called amoebastome, used for a novel form of phagocytosis. There appears to be an inverse correlation between the mean number of suckers per amoeba an... Read More

Time's Up

Merry Youle of the Small Things Considered blog has a new post up that looks at the phage-encoded holin timer and its function in a lytic infection.

"Holins are the smallest known biological timers. Timers, not clocks. Timers tick along, then go off after the specified interval. These small, ... Read More

Epstein-Barr-3 cells

Epstein-Barr-3 (Lymphoblastoid cell line from Burkitt's lymphona) Cells stained by EBV positive serum Read More

The FDA warns against using Rotarix rotavirus vaccine--at least temporarily

The Food and Drug Administration on Monday warned doctors and parents against using the Rotarix rotavirus vaccine until further testing can confirm that it is safe. The warning follows the discovery by an academic research group--subsequently confirmed by the FDA and Rotarix manufacturer GlaxoSm... Read More

New Bacteria Strain Points the Way Toward 'Super Sourdough' Bread

Scientists have unveiled a new natural sourdough ingredient that could replace conventional additives in a variety of other breads, while making them tastier and more healthful.

They described their achievements at the American Chemical Society's 239th National Meeting, being held in San Fran... Read More

Two novel ways to kill TB discovered

Scientists have discovered two novel ways of killing the bacteria that cause tuberculosis (TB).

According to researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, their findings could lead to a potent TB therapy that would also prevent resistant TB strains from developing... Read More

Scientists Find More Influences on Inherited Traits

Researchers have looked deeper into the makeup of DNA to get clues about why people might have different colors of hair or eyes, why some are taller or heavier and why some are more susceptible to certain diseases.

They found that changes in chromatin structure and transcription factor bindin... Read More

Dormant microbes promote diversity, serve environment

The ability of microbes, tiny organisms that do big jobs in our environment, to go dormant not only can save them from death and possible extinction but may also play a key role in promoting biodiversity and ecosystem stability.

In a paper published this week in the Proceedings of National Ac... Read More

BacterioFiles Episode 8

In this show, I report on four exciting stories: a plant-fungus symbiosis, making algae make medicine, fighting cancer with a virus, and making biofuels out of wood scraps.




























(8 MB, 9 minutes)

Post questions... Read More

TWiV 74: Influenza with Professor Adolfo Garcia-Sastre



On episode #74 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent speaks with Adolfo Garcia-Sastre about the origin, pathogenesis, and prevention of the 2009 pandemic influenza H1N1 virus.


Ho... Read More

Art,Science Mixer At Mission Bay

As researchers, sneakers on, trickled out of UC San Francisco’s Genentech Hall on a warm, windless evening this week, assorted persons with stylish glasses and prettier footwear made their way against the flow and into the building’s marble atrium.

The California College of the Arts and the ... Read More

Personal Bacteria

Researchers at CIRES at the University of Colorado Boulder Campus found a connection between the unique bacteria found on an individual's hand and the bacteria left on commonly used devices such as computer keyboards and mice. The study holds future promise for forensic uses. Listen to CU Resear... Read More

UK Scientists Devise Worldwide Food Alert System

Countries producing food containing harmful bacteria and toxins could be named and shamed more quickly using a worldwide alert system devised by a team of scientists from Kingston University in South West London. The team, led by Professor Declan Naughton, says the easy to use computer tool can ... Read More

Plant's Ability to Identify, Block Invading Bacteria Examined

Understanding how plants defend themselves from bacterial infections may help researchers understand how people and other animals could be better protected from such pathogens.

That's the idea behind a study to observe a specific bacteria that infects tomatoes but normally does not bother the... Read More

BacterioFiles Episode 8

In this show, I report on four exciting stories: a plant-fungus symbiosis, making algae make medicine, fighting cancer with a virus, and making biofuels out of wood scraps.



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