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After Setbacks, Small Successes for Gene Therapy

Not long ago, gene therapy seemed troubled by insurmountable difficulties. After decades of hype and dashed hopes, many who once embraced the idea of correcting genetic disorders by giving people new genes all but gave up the idea

But scientists say gene therapy may be on the edge of a resurg... Read More

Frigid Antarctica Loaded with Viruses

Antarctica's icy lakes are home to a surprisingly diverse community of viruses, including some that were previously unidentified.

At first glance, Antarctica's freshwater lakes don't seem very hospitable to life. They remain frozen for a good nine months out of the year, and they contain very... Read More

Swine Flu Hits Remote Amazon Trive

A short video detailing the plight of an Amazon Indian tribe who have been devastated by the H1N1 virus. Read More

Podcasts as Tools in Introductory Environmental Studies

A recent paper in the Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education by Christine Vatovec and Teri Balser examines the effectiveness of using podcasts as an educational tool.

Out of 209 survey respondents, the authors found:

"The majority of students reported enjoying using the podcasts in... Read More

Map Of Human Bacterial Diversity Shows Wide Interpersonal Differences

A University of Colorado at Boulder team has developed the first atlas of bacterial diversity across the human body, charting wide variations in microbe populations that live in different regions of the human body and which aid us in physiological functions that contribute to our health.

The ... Read More

Bacterial antibiotic resistance genes discovered

Antibacterial soap, hand sanitizer and antibiotics are all substances that we use in an attempt to kill bacteria that might make us sick.Whether we are concerned about getting strep throat, bacterial meningitis or something else, these prevention methods can offer protection.

However, some ba... Read More

How Bacteria Get Past Our Defenses

Mucus is more than gross--it's a critical barrier against disease, trapping many of the germs that want to invade your body. A wet mesh of proteins, antiseptic enzymes and salts, mucus is what keeps all but a few microbes from wreaking havoc on many of our most exposed tissues.

Helicobacter p... Read More

Survey of Academic Life Scientists Suggests 10-Year Drop in Industry Funding

Direct industry funding for academic life science research appears to have decreased in the last decade, according to the results of a 2007 survey published this week.

The survey also found that academic life scientists with industry support withheld data or delayed publication due to commerc... Read More

Plants and Bacteria 'Talk' to Thwart Disease

In plant and animal innate immunity, like many of the dances of life, it takes two to tango. A receptor molecule in the plant pairs up with a specific molecule on the invading bacteria and, presto, the immune system swings into action to defend against the invasion of the disease-causing microbe... Read More

Human microbes are picky about neighbourhoods on body

Your body is home to 10 times as many microbes as its own cells. But they can be quite picky about where they will settle – and what other bacteria they'll share fences with.

That's the conclusion of the most comprehensive map ever of the microbial communities flourishing in the human body.
... Read More

Syncephalastrum sp

Syncephalastrum sp. Interference phase microscopy (1000X) Read More

Can Pets Get Swine Flu?

A short Q&A session that regularly runs in the New York Times. This week, pets and H1N1 are discussed by Dr. Louise Murray, director of medicine at the A.S.P.C.A. Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York City. Read More

Jason Tetro talks H1N1 with the public (Part 2)

The Centre for Research on Environmental Microbiology's Jason Tetro takes calls from the public and answers questions on the H1N1 situation. Read More

Jason Tetro talks H1N1 on CTV Ottawa

The Centre for Research on Environmental Microbiology's Jason Tetro talks with CTV Ottawa's Leanne Cusack on the H1N1 situation. Read More

Bacteria mix it up at the microscopic level

Many hands—or many flagella—make light work.

In studies of the motion of tiny swimming bacteria, scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory found that the microscopic organisms can stir fluids remarkably quickly and effectively. As a result, the bacterial flagel... Read More

Rachel Armstrong: Architecture that repairs itself?

(from http://www.ted.com) Venice, Italy is sinking. To save it, Rachel Armstrong says we need to outgrow architecture made of inert materials and, well, make architecture that grows itself. She proposes a not-quite-alive material that does its own repairs and sequesters carbon, too. Read More

Flu outrunning vaccine, experts say

H1N1 in the news. Read More

Cat 'doing well' after world-first swine flu case

Vets in the US state of Iowa said a household cat had tested positive for swine flu - the first known case in the world of the new pandemic strain spreading to the feline population.

The domestic shorthair, a 13-year-old castrated male, apparently caught A(H1N1) off its owners - two of the th... Read More

Home Researchers study bacteria’s use in solar energy

n the future, bacteria could harness solar energy to provide power for automobiles if an ASU project recently granted $5.2 million by the U.S. Department of Energy succeeds.

A program in the energy department chose only 37 of 3,500 initial applicants to receive grants.

ASU professor Willem... Read More

Restarting Regeneration One Step at a Time

Planarians may be lowly flatworms, but the tiny crawlers possess powers that even superheroes would envy. Cut off the worm’s head or tail, and a new one sprouts to replace it. In the flatworm’s body, nerves, muscles, connective tissues, and whole organs regenerate when damaged or removed.

“T... Read More

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