A team of researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute will send an army of microorganisms into space this week, to investigate new ways of preventing the formation and spread of biofilms, or clusters of bacteria, that could pose a threat to the health of astronauts.
The Micro-2 experime... Read More
Inducing cellular immunity as a means to protect against influenza virus is the focus of several laboratories at the Trudeau Institute. Researchers have recently identified two important signaling components required by the immune system that might allow us to pre-position our own virus-fighting... Read More
Some Afghan farmers are blaming British and American soldiers for spraying the crops with the disease. Officials have denied involvement.
Jean-Luc Lemahieu, head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime in Afghanistan (UNODC), said that plant samples were currently being tested to confirm whether ... Read More
A collaboration of two spanish groups from CSIC had solved the 3D structure of LytC. The structure explains the peculiar role that this protein plays during a process known as pneumococcal fratricide. The structure has been published in the last issue of Nature Structural Molecular Biology.
In certain social circles, it's not what you know, but who you know that counts. The same seems to be true of the gene switches that turn on cancer cells.
One way cells turn genes on and off is via small RNA molecules. In cancer, the usual pattern of microRNA production is disrupted. But as s... Read More
On the grounds of Uganda’s biggest AIDS clinic, Dinavance Kamukama sits under a tree and weeps.
Her disease is probably quite advanced: her kidneys are failing and she is so weak she can barely walk. Leaving her young daughter with family, she rode a bus four hours to the hospital where her ... Read More
We are not alone -- even in our own bodies. The human gut is home to 100 trillion bacteria, which, for millions of years, have co-evolved along with our digestive and immune systems. Most people view bacteria as harmful pathogens that cause infections and disease. Other, more agreeable, microbes... Read More
A team of University of California, San Diego School of Medicine researchers has discovered that common intestinal bacteria appear to promote tumor growths in genetically susceptible mice, but that tumorigenesis can be suppressed if the mice are exposed to an inhibiting protein enzyme.
The re... Read More
Change is a-coming. Thats what Rino Rappouli (of Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics in Siena, Italy) and Antonio Cassone (of the Department of Infectious, Parasitic and Immunomediated Diseases at the Istituto Superiore di Sanita Rome) argue in a new Perspectives piece accepted for the inaugural ... Read More
In the Nº 102 of the "El podcast del microbio" I discuss the panspermia theory and the results of the satellite Foton M3 experiment. En el p... Read More
Every year, thousands of people in Arizona contract an infection while being treated in a hospital.
The illness, which sometimes is fatal, may come from a doctor's unwashed hands, dirty hospital scrubs, unclean medical instruments or even bacteria found on the patient's skin.
But unlike in... Read More
When exactly did oxygen first appear in Earth’s atmosphere? Although many physical and chemical processes are thought to be responsible for that profound transformation, scientists have tried to answer at least part of that question by looking for the origin of oxygenic photosynthesis — the pro... Read More
Three-quarters of children vaccinated against meningitis C lose their protection against the disease by their early teens, research suggests. The Oxford team which did the work says its findings fuel calls for a booster jab to be offered to adolescents. The study of 250 children aged six to 12, ... Read More
Researchers say that a dry, inhalable vaccine developed for measles prevention may also help pave the way for the inexpensive treatment of a range of other illnesses.
More immediately, news of the vaccine should be especially welcomed by less-developed nations, where there is more limited acc... Read More
Bacterial spores, the most resistant organisms on earth, carry an extra coating of protection previously undetected, a team of microbiologists reports in the latest issue of the journal Current Biology. Their findings offer additional insight into why spores of the bacteria that cause botulism, ... Read More
Having upped my daily dose of podcasts I stumbled upon This Week In Science. The latest show (http://www.twis.org/audio/2010/03/09/438/) they mentioned something that probably comes within your sphere of interest, namely the fin... Read More
On episode #81 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent and Rich answer listener questions on viruses and gluten allergy, RNA silencing, influenza virus, herpes simplex virus, HIV/AIDS, chronic... Read More
The US Food and Drug Administration recently recommended that administration of Glaxo SmithKline’s Rotarix vaccine, which protects against rotavirus infection, be suspended after an independent research group found that the vaccine contains DNA of porcine circovirus type 1. Now the FDA reports f... Read More
Last April, a strange new virus was sickening and killing patients in Mexico. It showed up in two children at a California clinic. Identified as a new form of H1N1, or swine flu, it quickly became a test of the USA's preparations for an epidemic and the public's ability to cope with fear of the ... Read More
Dangerous bacteria may be rafting their way to a beach near you. New research reveals that, just like a rat clinging to a piece of floating wood after a flood, pathogenic microorganisms can set up shop aboard drifting bits of fish feces and other debris and ride them to far-flung destinations. U... Read More