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Darwin's Finches Get Their Genomes Sequenced

Researchers have sequenced the genomes of all 15 species of Darwin’s finches, revealing a key gene responsible for the diversity in the birds’ beaks. The study, published online in Nature this week, also redraws the family tree of these iconic birds, whose facial variations helped Charles Darwin... Read More

NIH Ebola study in macaques provides timeframes for post-mortem viral stability

To determine how long Ebola virus could remain infectious in a body after death, National Institutes of Health (NIH) scientists sampled deceased Ebola-infected monkeys and discovered the virus remained viable for at least seven days. They also detected non-infectious viral RNA for up to 70 days ... Read More

Your Soap Has Bacteria In It, But It Still Gets You Clean

Bacteria are everywhere on your skin, hair and eyelashes, to name a few of their homes. Bacteria are even in your soap, the very thing you thought washed all the bacteria away.

As long as the bacteria keep their numbers small, there's nothing wrong with them living in soap. But every once in ... Read More

Drug Combinations a Good Approach for Infectious Fungus

Researchers at the University of Toronto have discovered that Candida albicans — a leading cause of potentially fatal hospital-acquired infections — rarely develops resistance to combination drug therapy and, when it becomes resistant, it also becomes less dangerous.

The team may also have fo... Read More

Happy Microbial Valentines Day---In Words of Living Light!

In this short blog post, I "write" on Petri dishes with bioluminescent bacteria to create words and poems in "living light." I also write a haiku to quorum sensing in the same style! Read More

Why drinking blood doesn’t make mosquitoes sick.

While it’s easy to think about mosquitoes as a mere portal for shuttling malaria and other diseases from one person to another, the insects have their own immune response to infection.

After sucking down a blood meal, mosquitoes ramp up production of immune system proteins to fight off potent... Read More

Bacteria exchange food via nanotubes

Bacteria typically thrive in communities where colonies of many different species collaborate and support each other's growth and exchange nutrients.

However, it has not been clear whether they do this only by releasing the metabolites into the cell environment for their neighbors to pick up,... Read More

Slide culture technique

Slide culture technique
Growth of mycelia of aspergillus after incubation at Rt/24hrs on Sabouraud's agar as observed under low power... Read More

Global Warming May Spawn New Disease Outbreaks

Infections lurking on the margins of civilization are becoming more likely to cause outbreaks as the climate changes, researchers say. Ravens, rodents and rattlesnakes are moving to new locales as rainfall and temperatures shift over time (ClimateWire, Dec. 14, 2011).

Click "source" to read ... Read More

Johns Hopkins and CDC prepare emergency department staff to care for patients with infectious disease

Four Web-based training modules developed by Johns Hopkins Medicine for emergency department personnel who treat patients with infectious diseases are now available on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

Titled Ebola Preparedness: Emergency Department Guidelines, the... Read More

Ancient rocks show life could have flourished on Earth 3.2 billion years ago

The ability to use atmospheric nitrogen to support more widespread life was thought to have appeared roughly 2 billion years ago. Now research from the University of Washington looking at some of the planet’s oldest rocks finds evidence that 3.2 billion years ago, life was already pulling nitrog... Read More

Research Shows Asian Herb Holds Promise as Treatment for Ebola Virus Disease

New research that focuses on the mechanism by which Ebola virus infects a cell and the discovery of a promising drug therapy candidate is being published February 27, 2015, in the journal Science. Dr. Robert Davey, scientist and Ewing Halsell Scholar in the Department of Immunology and Virology ... Read More

'Virtual virus' unfolds the flu on a CPU

Combining experimental data from X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, cryoelectron microscopy and lipidomics, researchers have built a complete model of the outer envelope of an influenza A virion for the first time. The approach, known as a coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulation, has ... Read More

Long-term nitrogen fertilizer use disrupts plant-microbe mutualisms

When exposed to nitrogen fertilizer over a period of years, nitrogen-fixing bacteria called rhizobia evolve to become less beneficial to legumes – the plants they normally serve, researchers report in a new study.

These findings, reported in the journal Evolution, may be of little interest to... Read More

Were early seas transformed by sponge microbiome?

If ever there was proof of the power of small things, surely this is it. Last year, came the suggestion that sponges transformed Earth's deep oceans 750 million years ago, turning them into an oxygen-rich haven for life. Now it seems tiny bacteria living inside the sponges also played a part in ... Read More

Study: Reusable Plastic Produce Containers Harbor Bacteria Even After Being Cleaned, Sanitized

Reusable plastic containers used to transport large amounts of fruits and vegetables to grocery stores can continue to harbor potentially harmful bacteria directly on their surfaces, even after undergoing industry-standard cleaning and sanitizing, according to a new study conducted by researcher... 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

Were early seas transformed by sponge microbiome?

If ever there was proof of the power of small things, surely this is it. Last year, came the suggestion that sponges transformed Earth's deep oceans 750 million years ago, turning them into an oxygen-rich haven for life. Now it seems tiny bacteria living inside the sponges also played a part in ... Read More

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

Microbe helps switchgrass 'detox' polluted soil.

Switchgrass successfully removed up to 40 percent of the PCBs from contaminated soils in lab experiments. When a PCB-oxidizing microorganism joined in, the removal rate reached 47 percent.

The researchers investigated how adding an aerobic PCB-oxidizing microorganism could enhance the oxidati... Read More
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