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WHO chief: Drug firms OK plan for vaccine to poor

The head of the World Health Organization says major drug companies have agreed on a plan to give poor countries access to a swine flu vaccine and antiviral medications if a worldwide outbreak is declared.

Dr. Margaret Chan says she appealed for help as she met with drug companies and vaccine... Read More

Scientists discover deadly secret of Komodo's bite

The world's largest lizard, the Komodo dragon, has a snake-like venom in its bite which sends victims into shock and stops their blood from clotting, according to Australian research.

It had been widely believed that deadly bacteria in the carnivorous lizard's mouth helped kill its prey.

B... Read More

ASM GM 2009 - TWiV 33 Live in Philly

Vincent, Alan, Dick, and Raul Andino recorded TWiV live at the ASM General Meeting in Philadelphia, where they discussed increased arterial blood pressure caused by cytomegalovirus infection, restriction of influenza replication at low temperature by the avian viral glycoproteins, first isola... Read More

Nanobot Uses Bacteria Swarm for Propulsion

Canadian researcher Sylvain Martel has developed a ultra tiny machine that can be propelled and steered through a swarm of 3,000 bacteria.

The tiny device, which measures just 300x300 microns, contains a solar cell, communications circuit and sensor. By sensing pH levels and sharing them via ... Read More

Ultra Sound Weapons Knock Out Algal Blooms

Scientists at the University of Hull, UK, think they have found a way to put a stop to red tide by exposing them to blasts of ultrasound. Michiel Postema and his colleagues tested three different frequencies on a particularly harmful species of blue-green algae, Anabaena sphaerica, which can cau... Read More

Oregon researchers isolate RNA from specific cells using fruit flies

A team of University of Oregon biologists, using fruit flies, has created a way to isolate RNA from specific cells, opening a new window on how gene expression drives normal development and disease-causing breakdowns.

While DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) provides an identical genetic blueprint ... Read More

TWiV 32: Influenza in silico

On episode 32 of the podcast "This Week in Virology", Vincent, Alan, and Raul Rabadan converse about polio survivors in iron lungs, bocavirus, structure of mimivirus, and genome sequence analysis of influenza H1N1 viruses. Read More

Complex Microbial Community Structure in Adult Cystic Fibrosis Airways as Revealed by 16S rRNA PhyloChip

This poster, presented at the 109th ASM general meeting demonstrates the relationship between clinical measures of cystic fibrosis, a common and serious genetic disease, with the microbial ecology of bacteria that colonise the airways of these patients. The technique used to characterise the mi... Read More

TWiV 32: Influenza in silico

In episode 32 of This Week in Virology, hosts Vincent Racaniello, Alan Dove and guest Read More

Will hand washing dry up?

As the media frenzy and public fears about swine flu/H1N1 rescinds, health experts are worried that hand washing vigilance will slack.

"Just weeks ago, Americans were hearing similar, daily pleas from health officials and even President Obama as initial fears about a new flu virus, called H1N... Read More

Scientists Find RNA Surprises in Listeria Bacteria

A team at the Pasteur Institute has taken a big step towards better understanding the molecular mechanisms that transform Listeria from a harmless soil-dweller to a dangerous human pathogen by mapping the genes that Listeria expresses under different environmental conditions.

The researchers... Read More

Milestones in Microbiology: Bergey's Lab

Alison O'Brien, President at American Society for Microbiology and professor and chair of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences’ (USU) Department of Microbiology and Immunology, in Philadelphia.
Read More

Swine Flu (H1N1) Cases Rise by 1,000 in 24 Hours

The World Health Organization reports the number of confirmed swine flu cases has risen by nearly 1,000 in 24 hours to 8,451. Read More

A Solar Powered Micro-machine Commands Bacteria Movement

"Researchers in Canada have created a solar-powered micro-machine that is no bigger than the period at the end of this sentence. The tiny machine can carry out basic sensing tasks and can indirectly control the movement of a swarm of bacteria in the same Petri dish."

"On such a small device t... Read More

Termites and Protozoa Discovered Together in 100 Million-year-old Amber

The analysis of a termite entombed for 100 million years in an ancient piece of amber has revealed the oldest example of "mutualism" ever discovered between an animal and microorganism, and also shows the unusual biology that helped make this one of the most successful, although frequently despi... Read More

Plague Doctor

Doctors in the 17th Century wore penguin-like masks stuffed with flowers and herbs to protect themselves from the Plague. Image from NIH. Read More

17th Century Doctors Wore Pengiun-like Masks to Treat Plague Patients

I've always scene these types of masks featured in freaky movies, but had no idea that they were used by doctors in the 17th century to treat people who got infected by the plague.

"Scientists thought the plague was caused by breathing harmful gases emitted from the ground, and doctors put fl... Read More

Swine flu is not man made says WHO

The World Health Organization is working to debunk rumors started by an Australian virologist.

"The virus rumor was started by Adrian J. Gibbs, a retired plant virologist from the Australian National University, who previously published work in the journal Science questioning the idea, now ac... Read More

Laurie Garrett: What can we learn from the 1918 flu?

In 2007, as the world worried about a possible avian flu epidemic, Laurie Garrett, author of "The Coming Plague," gave this powerful TED talk to a University audience. Her insights from past pandemics are may be more relevant than ever today as we strive to understand the potential threat from s... Read More

MTS27 - Melanie Cushion - Pneumocystis carinii

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Melanie Cushion holds down two jobs: she’s a research career scientist at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, and she’s also professor and associate chair for rese... Read More

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