Studying HIV-1, the most common and infectious HIV subtype, Johns Hopkins scientists have identified 25 human proteins “stolen” by the virus that may be critical to its ability to infect new cells. HIV-1 viruses capture many human proteins from the cells they infect but the researchers believe t... Read More
Robert Koch is one of the key figures in early bacteriology, helping develop culture techniques (e.g. solid media), critical reasoning (e.g. Koch’s postulates), and disease etiology (e.g. cholera and tuberculosis). He also published the first photomicrographs of bacteria (Figure 1A) in his 1877 ... Read More
There's nothing quite like the pastime of cloud watching. We can spend hours watching these ethereal formations pass by. We can find shapes in them, try to imagine where they came from -- and where they are going -- and whether or not they are going to open up and douse us with precipitation.
... Read More
Bacteria on a surface wander around and often organize into highly resilient communities known as biofilms. It turns out that they organize in a rich-get-richer pattern similar to the distribution of wealth in the U.S. economy, according to a new study by researchers at University of California,... Read More
The UK dog population is estimated to be around ten million, with dogs producing approximately 1,000 tonnes of excrement each day. New research has shown that dogs act as a major source of the parasite egg, Toxocara, which can potentially contaminate the public environment and infect humans.
... Read More
A 65-year-old Frenchman is hospitalized after contracting France's first case of a deadly new respiratory virus related to SARS, and French health authorities said Wednesday they are trying to find anyone who might have been in contact with him to prevent it from spreading.
It's unclear how o... Read More
Kal Penn has a pretty unusual resume: He has starred in Harold and Kumar, the most successful series of stoner movies made in the past decade; and has served in the White House as the Obama administration's liaison to youth. Now he's hosting a new show, The Big Brain Theory, on the Discovery Cha... Read More
It is generally a mystery how new diseases arise and how the pathogens that cause them first enter countries. However, clues may come from examination of specimens from similar outbreaks. This approach has recently been taken by scientists at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna to trac... Read More
Taking an approach similar to that used for discovering new therapeutic drugs, chemists at the University of California, Davis, have found several compounds that can boost oil production by green microscopic algae, a potential source of biodiesel and other "green" fuels. The work appears online ... Read More
It was a brew to rival any in “Macbeth.” The main ingredients were rat brain and a fearsome, carefully cultivated virus.
In his laboratory in Pearl River, N.Y., 20 miles north of Manhattan, Dr. Hilary Koprowski macerated the ingredients in an ordinary kitchen blender one January day in 1948. ... Read More
Intestinal dysbiosis may play a role in gastrointestinal (GI) disorders such as necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in children, and prebiotics and probiotics may be efficacious for treating these conditions, according to Philip M. Sherman, MD, professor of pediatr... Read More
El podcast del microbio Nº 373 summarize a recent article published in PLoS ONE on the active extracellular DNA release to the environment by Bacillus subtilis. El podcast del microbio Nº 373... Read More
Scientist at the Rensselaer Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies and the Rensselaer Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for the Directed Assembly of Nanostructures have created a coating that can selectively kill the bacteria Listeria, a causative agent of food borne illne... Read More
Amoeba eat bacteria and other human pathogens, engulfing and destroying them – or being destroyed by them, but how these single-cell organisms distinguish and respond successfully to different bacterial classes has been largely unexplained.
In a report in the journal Current Biology, research... Read More
Of all the things that could be hazardous to your health, would you believe breathing oxygen makes the list?
Our bodies produce toxic chemicals in our cells, called oxidants, which we fight naturally and with foods that contain antioxidants like blueberries and dark chocolate. All forms of li... Read More
Background on structural analysis of bacterial proteins, from Erec Stebbins, speaker at the 2012 Holiday Lecture "Bacteria's Deadly Design: How Earth's most prevalent life-form uses a microscopic syringe to invade and attack."
Think about the type of animal that would make an ideal host for a virus. It would gather in large dense groups, making it easier for the virus to jump into fresh hosts. It should have a relatively long lifespan, so any single individual has many chances of becoming infected. It would certainly ... Read More
Warnings about the emergence of another influenza virus may elicit scepticism, but we should not be complacent, cautions Peter Horby.
Once again an animal influenza A virus has crossed the species barrier to cause an appreciable number of human cases. Now, two months after the first known hum... Read More
The phrase "gut bacteria" might sound icky and repulsive, but modern science may have you soon thinking differently about the bugs that live in your intestinal system. Top researchers around the globe are exploring the bacteria that naturally reside in the bowels of both people and animals, and ... Read More