The urge to celebrate during the darkest part of the year - to feast, to sing and talk story about great stars (the sun), to burn candles for divinity or our own inner light - seems nearly universal. Our ancestors learned that the nights shortened as surely as they had lengthened, that the sun p... Read More
Amiodarone, a drug long used for treating irregular heart rhythms, can also be effective against Chagas disease and leishmaniasis skin lesions, according to Alberto Paniz-Mondolfi at Columbia University in New York, N.Y., and his collaborators in Venezuela. Both these parasitic diseases are ende... Read More
The spread of antibiotic resistance among bacteria is a growing problem, making certain diseases increasingly difficult to treat. New strategies for attacking the bacteria are needed, yet virtually no novel-mechanism antibiotics are currently in development.
Gram-negative bacteria - such as t... Read More
Federal health officials on Wednesday linked the H1N1 flu epidemic to a sharp rise in the number of severe bacterial infections.
Anne Schuchat, a physician at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said the national trend was "worrisome" but not unexpected.
"In previous pandemics,... Read More
Tired of the portraits, landscapes and abstract art that peppers the walls of most art museums? According to Dutch photographer Wim von Egmond, there’s one art subject that has been ignored for centuries and finally deserves its due: microscopic organisms.
A soon-to-be-implemented policy for scientists who are permitted to conduct research in national parks will give the National Park Service a share of any profits from their work.
The policy is expected to go into effect early next year following more than a decade of concern and a lawsuit ove... Read More
Tiny magnetic discs just a millionth of a metre in diameter could be used to used to kill cancer cells, according to a study published on Sunday.
Laboratory tests found the so-called "nanodiscs", around 60 billionths of a metre thick, could be used to disrupt the membranes of cancer cells, ca... Read More
Musical group Dan Kahn and the Painted Bird perform their song "Parasite" live in Philadelphia. The first set of lyrics are about Toxoplasma gondii which is mentioned by name in the song, although it's hard to make all of the vocals out, the rest of the track refers to other parasites too. If so... Read More
Vincent and Dickson continue Virology 101 with a discussion of how RNA viruses produce mRNA and replicate their genomes.
Host links Read More
Living like a pig could be good for you. Research has shown how dirty piglets obtain 'friendly' bacteria that help them to develop healthy immune systems later in life.
The results, published online in BMC Biology1, provide the first direct link between dirty living, immune health and genetic... Read More
In his 1934 travel book Beyond the Mexique Bay, Aldous Huxley compared Guatemala's Lake Atitlan to Italy's Lake Como. The Italian body of water, he wrote, "touches the limit of the permissibly picturesque." Atitlan, however, "is Como with the additional embellishment of several immense volcanoes... Read More
The CDC notes that up to 80 percent of infections may be spread by hand contact. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers work by disrupting the outer coat of viruses and bacteria. Read More
Here's another reason to drink red wine:
"Drinking red wine in moderate amount helps to rinse teeth clean of bacteria during and after meals, says a new study.
Earlier studies have linked moderate red wine intake with everything from improved longevity to diminished risk of cardiovascular ... Read More
"The practice of sterilising surgical tools and devices has helped radically improve healthcare. Researchers in the Netherlands are trying a new method, using plasma to kill bacteria inside sealed containers.
But the old mainstay is a 130-year-old device called an autoclave, which is somethin... Read More
Eric asked for “advice on how to bridge the gap between clinical medicine, public health, and virology research.” I asked Scott Hammer MD for his thoughts on this question. Here is Dr. Hammer’s response:
Thanks for forwarding this comment. In response, I’d inform y... Read More
YouTube user JohnnyElRady has created the following three-part microbiology blockbuster movie that is embedded below. It's a campy, low-budget, student production, but it's fun nonetheless. According to the YouTube description, the film was created by a group of 12 students in his MCB 3020 Class... Read More
Several cancer vaccines that are delivered via injections or intravenous lines are in development. Another approach to a vaccine, however, is to implant a small disk containing cancer-fighting substances under the skin, according to researchers from Harvard University and the Dana-Farber Cancer ... Read More
At least 7,826 people worldwide have died from laboratory-confirmed cases of pandemic H1N1 influenza, an increase of more than 1,000 in the last week, but the actual number is probably much larger than that, the World Health Organization said today. Most countries have now stopped counting every... Read More
Forget the chicken. At vaccine-maker Sanofi Pasteur, it all starts with the egg -- millions of them each week. The mini vaccine factories will grow more than 75 million doses of H1N1 vaccine this year.
Earlier this month, the only company to make flu shots in the United States offered reporte... Read More
Here's a promo video for Aston University's microbiology course, "The World of Microbiology, Mastering the Invisible, Invincible, Treatable & Preventable," for school children that's funded by the Wellcome Trust. Aston University is located in Birmingham, UK. Read More