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HSC urges prevention of infant lung infections

Health Sciences Centre wants parents to take steps to prevent respiratory infections in newborns after seeing a jump in the number of infections.

Since mid-December, there have been 106 cases of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) admitted to Children's Hospital, according to the Winnipeg Regio... Read More

IQ Test Assesses Bacteria’s 'Social Intelligence'

Researchers have developed a “Social-IQ score” for bacteria, which may lead to new antibiotics and bacteria-based “green” pesticides for the agricultural industry.

While sequencing the genome of the pattern-forming bacteria, Paenibacillus vortex (Vortex), an international research team develo... Read More

Stockpiled Avian Flu Vaccine Could Protect Against Potential Pandemic

A stockpiled vaccine designed to fight a strain of avian flu that circulated in 2004 can be combined with a vaccine that matches the current strain of bird flu to protect against a potential pandemic, researchers from Saint Louis University's Center for Vaccine Development have found.

The fin... Read More

Fear of infection drove AIDS decline in Zimbabwe

Fear of infection helped drive a 50 percent decline in new cases of HIV in Zimbabwe from 1997 to 2007, said an international study published Tuesday in the United States.

The analysis of social factors that helped to halve what was once one of the worst AIDS epidemics in the world could offer... Read More

Yet Another Route to Cellulosic Ethanol

There are myriad routes to making car fuel from waste, using mix-and-match technologies assembled in novel ways, but none has worked yet on a commercial scale. On Wednesday, Ineos Bio, the subsidiary of a major international chemical firm, broke ground on a plant that aims to use yet another com... Read More

Bacteria buildup on a doctor's lab coat is same as short-sleeved uniform: study

At the end of a hospital shift, a doctor's white lab coat that hasn't been washed recently doesn't harbour any more bacteria than a short-sleeved uniform that began the day freshly laundered, a new study suggests.

Researchers at the University of Colorado decided to look into the matter becau... Read More

Group A streptococcal infections during the seasonal influenza outbreak 2010/11 in South East England

On 10 January 2011, the United Kingdom (UK) Chief Medical Officer issued a statement advising primary and secondary care doctors to remain vigilant to the possibility of severe bacterial co-infection in patients with influenza [1], because preliminary data indicated an increase in bacterial dise... Read More

Hunted: Vibrio cholerae is followed by a bacteriophage

You are an ecosystem. Think of your body as a microscopic Serengeti – a wild place where the strong prey upon the weak and “survival of the fittest” is the law of the land. To a microbe, the human body is just another place they try to eke out a living, pinched between prey and predator.

So ... Read More

Buried microbes coax energy from rock

Here’s yet another reason to marvel at microbes: Buried deep within Earth at temperatures and pressures that would kill most living beings, bacteria and other tiny organisms not only survive but apparently even coax the rocks around them to produce food.

Researchers have found that the mere p... Read More

On Evolution, Biology Teachers Stray From Lesson Plan

Teaching creationism in public schools has consistently been ruled unconstitutional in federal courts, but according to a national survey of more than 900 public high school biology teachers, it continues to flourish in the nation’s classrooms.

Researchers found that only 28 percent of biolo... Read More

New Salmonella strain delivers gene-based therapy to fight virus in mice

Most people do their best to avoid contact with Salmonella. This bacteria family, which often lives on poultry and can find its way into other food products, causes hundreds of thousands of illnesses—and hundreds of deaths—in the U.S. each year. But new research demonstrates that this common foo... Read More

Five ways garlic can extend your life

When Bram Stoker first wrote “Dracula” in the late 1890s and included a superstition some Europeans believed about using garlic externally to protect themselves from evil spirits, other residents at that time already knew the facts about which menaces garlic was actually the most effective again... Read More

TWiP 22 Letters

Luca writes:

Hi Vince and Dick,

I am an avid listener of your podcast (and Twiv, too) - I started something like six months ago and I've retrieved all those whose title sounded interesting. I am not a parasitologist myself, though I am a pharmaceutical (computational... Read More

TWiP 22: Hookworm

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Vincent and Dickson discuss possibly the most socially and politically important nematode of humans, the hookworm Ancylostoma duodenale and Necator americanus.

Read More

BacterioFiles Micro Edition 29 - Mid-air Microbial Mix

This episode: A sample of bacteria in city air!

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Single-cell marine predator’s unique survival mechanisms revealed: UBC research

University of British Columbia researchers have uncovered the unique survival mechanisms of a marine organism that may be tiny, but in some ways has surpassed sharks in its predatory efficiency.

“Our study shows that Oxyrrhis marina has picked up a gene commonly used by marine bacteria for ph... Read More

Turning Bacteria Against Themselves

Bacteria often attack with toxins designed to hijack or even kill host cells. To avoid self-destruction, bacteria have ways of protecting themselves from their own toxins.

Now, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have described one of these protective mechanis... Read More

Hong Kong combats more severe flu season with new antibodies

Doctors hope to treat this year's severe flu epidemic in Hong Kong by harvesting antibodies from patients who have recovered, medical experts said on Tuesday.

The experts said they hoped to treat more than 70 severely ill flu patients with certain antibodies taken from patients who have recov... Read More

Consumers Value Safer Food More Than Current Analyses Suggest

Government regulators could more realistically assess the value of improving food safety if they considered the fact that consumers typically want to avoid getting sick -- even if it means they have to pay a little extra for safer food, researchers say.

The researchers conducted such a nation... Read More

Disorienting fungus fatal to bats

The nation’s bat population is under serious assault by a deadly fungus that first appeared in New York State in 2006.

“If we lose bats, we lose keystone species in some communities, predators that consume enormous numbers of insects, and beautiful wildlife species that are important parts of... Read More
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