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Small Loop in Human Prion Protein Prevents Chronic Wasting Disease

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) — an infectious disease caused by prions — affects North American elk and deer, but has not been observed in humans. Using a mouse model that expresses an altered form of the normal human prion protein, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Me... Read More

Unusual Bacteria Discovered in Deepest Ocean Trench

Researchers from Japan discovered microscopic bacteria thrive in the canyon called Challenger Deep, which is the lowest point on Earth's surface and the deepest part of the Mariana Trench, the team reports Feb. 23 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In particular, the... Read More

Mutant bacteria that keep on growing

The typical Escherichia coli, the laboratory rat of microbiology, is a tiny 1-2 thousandths of a millimeter long. Now, by blocking cell division, two researchers at Concordia University in Montreal have grown E. coli that stretch three quarters of a millimeter. That's up to 750 times their norma... Read More

Swine flu claims 800 lives across India, Ahmedabad prohibits mass gatherings

Killer swine flu attacks India. It’s H1N1, the same strain which was responsible for 1918 Spanish and 2009 flu pandemic that was the deadliest natural disasters in human history. More than 11,000 cases have been reported in India. The death toll has risen to more than 700. Number of death and in... Read More

Gerbils and Silk Road to blame for plague

Most would choose the cuddly gerbil over the much-maligned rat. But the latter's bad reputation may not be fully deserved. Central Asian rodents, not rats, prospering under warm variations in climate, could have been to blame for the arrival of the Black Death in Europe in 1347 and for repeated ... Read More

2012 Salmonella Illness Linked to Microbiology Class

On May 30, 2012 Brianna Dannen, Public Health Nurse at the Clark County Health District (CCHD), received a call from Bob Williamson at Clark College. Mr. Williamson called to report that a child of a Clark College student enrolled in a microbiology class, BIOL&260, taught by Travis Kibota was i... Read More

U.N. experts warn of 'critical knowledge gaps' on Saudi MERS virus

Saudi Arabia has not done enough to investigate and control a deadly new MERS virus that has killed hundreds of people there and remains in many ways a mystery, United Nations health experts said on Monday.

Cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) are surging again, but Saudi health o... Read More

Too much of a good thing: Extra genes make bacteria lethal

We, as most animals, host many different beneficial bacteria. Being beneficial to the host often pays off for the bacteria, as success of the host determines the survival and spread of the microbe. But if bacteria grow too much they may become deadly. In a new study published in the latest editi... Read More

Malaria transmission linked to mosquitoes’ sexual biology

Sexual biology may be the key to uncovering why Anopheles mosquitoes are unique in their ability to transmit malaria to humans, according to researchers at Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health and University of Perugia, Italy. Through analysis of 16 Anopheles genomes, they found that these... Read More

Paper Test Quickly Detects Ebola, Dengue, And Yellow Fever

Researchers in the US have developed a silver nanoparticle-based paper test to simultaneously detect dengue, yellow fever and Ebola. This could provide a cheap and reliable diagnosis for all three diseases, that’s as quick as a home pregnancy test.

The test is made from strips of paper contai... Read More

A new understanding of Alzheimer’s

Although natural selection is often thought of as a force that determines the adaptation of replicating organisms to their environment, Harvard researchers have found that selection also occurs at the level of neurons, which are post-mitotic cells, and plays a critical role in the emergence of A... Read More

Your Immune System Is Made, Not Born

In one of the most comprehensive analyses of immune function performed to date, researchers analyzed blood samples from 105 sets of healthy twins. They measured immune cell populations and their chemical messengers—204 parameters in all—before and after participants received a flu shot. Differen... Read More

Aspergillus clavatus

Picture carefully taken with my iphone under a dissecting microscope. Read More

Microorganisms isolated from rain

Rain plated on Eosine Methylene Blue Agar
Incubation Conditions: 4d at 20°C

This drawing was done in the Pr. Vinatzer lab at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA. Read More

Enterobacteria deposited with rain

Created by: Caroline L. Monteil, PhD
Isolates: Two strains enterobacteria isolated from rain and mixed together.
Agar: Eosine Methylene Blue Agar
Incubation Conditions: 48 hours at 20°C

This drawing was done in the Pr. Vinatzer lab at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA. Read More

Antibiotic Producing Fungal Colony

This fungal colony, in association with a few others, was grown on SDA and appears to be an antibiotic producer. The compounds that it's producing appear orange and red. The colony grew and began producing compounds on the agar after five days incubation at 30 degree Celsius. This plate is part ... Read More

Rust preserves fossils from early Earth

Since life originated on Earth between 3.8 and 3.9 Ga ago, microorganisms have significantly shaped and influenced the chemistry of Earth’s surface and subsurface environments. Reconstructing the evolution of early microbial life depends mainly on finding organic and mineral remnants of microbia... Read More

Mutant Bacteria That Keep on Growing

The typical Escherichia coli, the laboratory rat of microbiology, is a tiny 1-2 thousandths of a millimeter long. Now, by blocking cell division, two researchers at Concordia University in Montreal have grown E. coli that stretch three quarters of a millimeter. That's up to 750 times their norma... Read More

Ocean acidification slows algae growth in the Southern Ocean

In a recent study, scientists at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), demonstrate for the first time that ocean acidification could have negative impacts on diatoms in the Southern Ocean. In laboratory tests they were able to observe that under chan... Read More

Parasitism runs deep in malaria's family tree

The ancestors of a large family of parasites—including those that cause malaria—were equipped to become parasites much earlier in their lineage than previously assumed, according to University of British Columbia (UBC) research.

The work, published in PNAS, traces the emergence of parasitism ... Read More
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