Only a few key mutations could cause the avian influenza virus to become airborne and transmissible among mammals, according to a controversial new paper publishing online today. In detailed research involving ferrets, researchers at the Erasmus Medical Centre in the Netherlands engineered a pot... Read More
The second of two papers on avian influenza H5N1 virus that caused such a furor in the past year was published today in the journal Science. I have carefully read the paper by Fouchier and colleagues, and I assure you that it does not enable the production of a deadly biological weapon. The resu... Read More
The more controversial of two papers describing how the lethal H5N1 bird flu could be made easier to spread was published on Thursday, six months after a scientific advisory board suggested that the papers’ most potentially dangerous data be censored.
The paper’s publication, in the journal S... Read More
A coating of selenium nanoparticles significantly reduces bacteria growth on polycarbonate, a material common in implanted medical devices.
Selenium is an inexpensive element that naturally belongs in the body. It is also known to combat bacteria. Still, it had not been tried as an antibiotic... Read More
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has developed a new diagnostic test to detect the presence of dengue virus in people with symptoms of dengue fever or dengue hemorrhagic fever. The test, called the CDC DENV-1-4 Real Time RT PCR Assay, has been authorized by the Food and Drug Admini... Read More
The authors of a study in mBio this week examined the genomes of two Bd isolates to find clues about its pathogenicity, reasoning that the Bd genome must bear the marks of restructuring to adapt to its new environmental niche and exploit its amphibian hosts. Compared with its fellow phylum membe... Read More
A number of variables can cause signficant changes in the human microbiome early in life including birth method and antibiotic exposure. Understanding these shifts is important because new research suggests that shifts in the microbiome of infants could make them more prone to gain weight as adu... Read More
The NIH Human Microbiome Project has been a 5-year endeavor to produce community resources to support the field of human microbiome research. Although the HMP has already produced hundreds of peer-reviewed publications, in the past week 2 major HMP Consortium papers as well as 20+ companion pap... Read More
Canadian researchers are reporting a potential advance in the treatment of Ebola virus infection, one of the most deadly pathogens known to humankind.
Researchers from the National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg are reporting that monkeys deliberately infected with Ebola were successfull... Read More
It was an experiment with bacteria that emboldened Novozymes A/S (NZYMB) into stepping up disclosures about its work to pressure groups. The openness paid off, and now the manufacturer is part of a growing club pushing transparency worldwide.
The maker of enzymes for chemical reactions was us... Read More
For a century, doctors have waged war against bacteria, using antibiotics as their weapons. But that relationship is changing as scientists become more familiar with the 100 trillion microbes that call us home — collectively known as the microbiome.
“I would like to lose the language of warfa... Read More
The health of humans, animals, and the environment are inextricably interconnected. Disruption of the environment often creates new niches for the evolution of infectious diseases, and provides opportunities for the transmission of pathogens to animals or humans. The majority of infectious disea... Read More
On the issue of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and animals, the first thing that comes to mind is livestock and other farm-based animals that are regularly fed antibiotics as growth promoters, but they are not the only source of resistance. Participants discuss studies showing that non-farm anim... Read More
This episode: Bacterial enzymes are good for making nanomagnets for computers!
A future weapon in the battle against obesity and diabetes could come in the form of an oil derived from the seeds of wild almond trees, according to researchers at Missouri University of Science and Technology.
The key to the oil's potential lies in its ability to affect certain microorganisms... Read More
Scientists have discovered when a cancer-killing virus is injected in the bloodstream it hitches a ride on blood cells and evades attack from the immune system, allowing it to reach cancer tumors, and start destroying cancer cells. They suggest this means it may be possible to use promising "vir... Read More
A newly added session at the 2012 General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology will focus on the latest data release by the NIH Human Microbiome Project (HMP).
The HMP has been a five-year endeavor to produce community resources to support the human microbiome field. These activit... Read More
Antibiotics accounted for about a quarter of all pediatric prescriptions; amoxicillin leads the list.
Overall, 263.6 million prescriptions were written for patients 17 and under in 2010, down 7% from 2002, finds the analysis of prescription claims databases by Food and Drug Administration res... Read More
Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital have identified commensal bacteria in the human intestine that produce a neurotransmitter that may play a role in preventing or treating inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn's disease.
We identified, to our knowledge... Read More