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Greenland microbe revived after 120,000 years

A tiny bacterium has been coaxed back to life after spending 120,000 years buried three kilometres deep in the Greenland ice sheet.

Officially named Herminiimonas glaciei, the bug consists of rods just 0.9 micrometres long and 0.4 micrometres in diameter, about 10 to 50 times smaller than the... Read More

Ethanol plants using hops to eliminate bacteria

An increasing number of ethanol companies are using hops to fight off nasty bacteria that can harm ethanol plant operations, according to Minnesota Public Radio in St. Paul, Minn. Though antibiotics work well they have become a public relations problem as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration sa... Read More

Study involving 21 Spanish hospitals states 50% of swine flu, ICU patients had no previous health problems

A Spanish study of ICU patients with H1N1, the largest ever conducted in Europe on influenza cases requiring intensive care, presented on the website of the medical journal ‘Critical Care,’ contradicts one of the messages on influenza A released by Spain's Ministry of Health and Department of He... Read More

Tasmania sparrow die-off and the possible connection with human salmonella infections

There is mounting concern about whether humans have caught a strain of salmonella discovered in Tasmania's sparrow population which is experiencing a notable decline.

"Four cases of the salmonella in humans this year has Australian investigators wondering if there may be a link between a wide... Read More

Methane mining may set off CO2 timebomb in Rwanda

The New Scientist reports that a "gold rush" to extract valuable methane from the depths of lake Kivu in Rwanda may trigger an outburst of gas that could wash a deadly, suffocating blanket over the 2 million people who live around the lake's shores.

"The lake, which is almost half a kilometre... Read More

CDC: General Questions and Answers on 2009 H1N1 Influenza A Vaccine Safety

The CDC has just released a general question and answers document on 2009 H1N1 influenza A vaccine safety.

"We expect the 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine to have a similar safety profile as seasonal flu vaccines, which have a very good safety track record. Over the years, hundreds of millions of ... Read More

A Backgrounder on Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS)

The CDC just released a Guillain-Barré syndrome fact sheet and addresses how they will be closely monitoring the safety of the 2009 H1N1 vaccine in relation to this illness. In 2003 The Institute of Medicine (IOM) conducted a thorough scientific review and concluded that people who received the ... Read More

Valomaciclovir may be effective in treating mono

In a study presented at the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) in San Francisco, University of Minnesota researchers found that students who receive an antiviral medication early in the course of the illness become less sick than those offered the standard a... Read More

H1N1 patients may be infectious 10+ days

USA Today reports two studies presented at ICAAC "by researchers in Canada and Singapore found that roughly one in five patients continue shedding the new H1N1 virus, or swine flu, with one study suggesting that patients may still shed virus despite treatment with Tamiflu.

The research sugges... Read More

Open-Access Flu Research Web Site Is Relaunched Amid Controversy

A database designed to help researchers worldwide develop vaccines for avian and seasonal influenza viruses, not to mention the prolific H1N1 "swine flu," is now at the center of an ugly rift between its co-creators. Both the Global Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Data (GISAID) Foundation ... Read More

Sickle-Cell Anemia: Vaccines in Wealthy Countries May Save Lives of Children in Africa

The New York Times reports that "a new study, published last week in the British journal Lancet, showed that invasive bacteria were an important cause of those children’s deaths and that many of the bacteria were the same kinds that affect children in wealthy countries, which have vaccines again... Read More

The Morning Shower, aka Bacteria Bath

Norman R. Pace of the University of Colorado and colleagues have found that the morning shower is essentially a bath in bacteria.

"As part of a project to measure microbes in the indoor human environment, they looked at shower water, in part because in showers bacteria are incorporated into f... Read More

Hand-washing: Your best bet to ward off the flu

An article in the New York Times by Tara Parker-Pope analyzes several recent hand-washing studies and concludes that soap and water, or alcohol-based hand sanitizing gels, are your best bets to stave off the flu.

"It sounds so simple as to be innocuous, a throwaway line in public-health warni... Read More

New 'adjuvant' could hold future of vaccine development

Scientists at Oregon State University have developed a new "adjuvant" that could allow the creation of important new vaccines, possibly become a universal vaccine carrier and help medical experts tackle many diseases more effectively.

Adjuvants are substances that are not immunogenic themselv... Read More

Tuberculosis patients can reduce transmissability by inhaling interferon through a nebulizer

A new study published in the September 15, 2009, issue of PLoS ONE found that patients with cavitary pulmonary tuberculosis receiving anti-TB medications supplemented with nebulized interferon-gamma have fewer bacilli in the lungs and less inflammation, thereby reducing the transmissibility of t... Read More

Put Your Hands Together

Scientists estimate that people are not washing their hands often or well enough and may transmit up to 80% of all infections by their hands. From doorknobs to animals to food, harmful germs can live on almost everything. Handwashing may be your single most important act to help stop the spre... Read More

Elmo calls for frequent handwashing

The federal government is reintroducing a powerful weapon in the fight against the H1N1 flu virus: Elmo.


The popular Sesame Street character will be featured in a series of public service advertisements meant to encourage better hygiene among young children, the Department of Health a... Read More

Henry the Hand

www.henrythehand.com is an online handwashing resource for teachers by Will Sawyer, MD. The mission of the educational campaign is to propagate the 4 Principles of Hand Awareness throughout the United States and the world.


... Read More

You Better Wash Your Hands

A parody of The Beatles' "I Wanna Hold Your Hand," as performed by UC Davis food toxicologist Carl Winter.

The animations were produced at New Mexico State University as part of USDA CSREES National Integrated Food Safety Initiative Project Number CD-D-FST-7057-CG.

... Read More

USDA Uses Twitter to Inform Consumers of Recalls

I have been using twitter (@Microblogology) as a way to keep in touch with some of my online friends for awhile now. Eventually my occasional tweets involving microbiology caused me to be "discovered" by Chris Condayan (@MicrobeWorld) and I was quickly followed by some other people in the scien... Read More

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