In 1980, a scientist looking at bone fragments under an ultraviolet microscope noticed the bones were glowing green—a hallmark of the antibiotic tetracycline. The drug latches onto calcium and gets deposited in bone. Nothing unusual. Except these bones were from a Nubian mummy buried 1,600 years... Read More
Jesse Bolton is a pretty buff guy. He's in the Navy, and a few mosquitoes don't scare him much. But he has seen what the bite of a malaria-carrying insect can do. One of his squadmates picked it up in Africa a few years ago.
That's why Bolton was sitting in a suite at the Residence Inn in Bet... Read More
The vaccine used to contain the recent swine flu pandemic was effective, but health authorities will need to ramp up the speed and volume of production during the next global outbreak, a World Health Organization official said Monday.
The WHO declared last month that the swine flu pandemic th... Read More
Hartz Mountain Corp. is voluntarily recalling 75,000 bags of dog treats after tests by the Food and Drug Administration found salmonella in the product.
The New Jersey-based pet food company is pulling out one lot of Hartz Naturals Real Beef Treats for Dogs. It said the 8-ounce bags of treats... Read More
Viruses are a curious lot. The standard drawing of the tree of life, the one you find on the inside back cover of biology textbooks, is divided into three branches: Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya. Viruses don’t make it onto the page.
That makes sense, some scientists argue, because they’re no... Read More
A link between poor oral hygiene and increased risk of heart attack has long been suspected.
But until now nobody has been able to figure out exactly why not brushing regularly might bring one on.
Now a Bristol University dental scientist has discovered that a common bacteria responsible ... Read More
Patients admitted to hospital with serious burns often have infected wounds that must be treated quickly. Yet it can take three days for microbiological tests to identify the bacteria present and allow doctors to select the appropriate treatment.
Old-time medical students were taught to reco... Read More
A behind the scenes look at the recent Human Microbiome Project conference Read More
Thirty-four years after NASA's Viking missions to Mars sent back results interpreted to mean there was no organic material - and consequently no life - on the planet, new research has concluded that organic material was found after all.
The finding does not bring scientists closer to discover... Read More
On episode #97 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent visited Peter Sarnow and Bert Semler during a trip to California, and spoke with them about their work on internal ribosome entry, and th... Read More
This photomicrograph depicted a number of Gram-positive, endospore-forming Bacillus anthracis bacteria. B. anthracis is the pathologic microorganism responsible for the disease “anthrax”, an acute infectious disease, which most commonly occurs in wild and domestic vertebrates (cattle, sheep, goa... Read More
Under a very high magnification of 12000X, this colorized scanning electron micrograph (SEM) revealed the presence of a large grouping of Gram-negative Salmonella typhimurium bacteria that had been isolated from a pure culture. See PHIL 10982 for a black and white version of this image.
How d... Read More
When I was a graduate student at the Medical College of Virginia, many of the microbiologists in my department were very active in the local ASM. Our local ASM provided opportunities to graduate students and postdocs to present their work to an outside audience of scientists from the surroundin... Read More
Flu season may be a bad time to check into a California hospital--and probably everywhere else in the country as well.
In a demonstration of what many experts would call appalling medical ethics, only slightly more than half of healthcare workers in California hospitals received a flu shot la... Read More
Where better to look for a sunscreen formula than in cyanobacteria – organisms that thrived on Earth before there was enough oxygen to block harmful ultraviolet light? The genes and enzymes responsible for producing sunscreen molecules in one such cyanobacterium have now been identified, a step ... Read More
A harmful algae bloom takes off in Kathryn Coyne's Lewes laboratory, turning a sample of saltwater yellow.
Then she adds the secret ingredient: a common bacterium called Shewanella.
Within 24 hours, dinoflagellates, the microbes that caused the bloom, are history.
When Coyne looks under... Read More
One of the most difficult aspects of working at the nanoscale is actually seeing the object being worked on. Biological structures like viruses, which are smaller than the wavelength of light, are invisible to standard optical microscopes and difficult to capture in their native form with other ... Read More
Perhaps no flu season in recent memory has been as hyped and harrowing as last year's, when swine flu infected millions and vaccine shortages led to long lines and frustration. As a new flu season dawns, and students head back to school, the latest vaccine—which protects against three strains of... Read More
Scientists at the Welsh School of Pharmacy say the first human clinical trials on a new drug to treat infections caused by the Hepatitis C virus have been successful.
Researchers say the new medication could now become an approved treatment.
300,000 people suffer from Hepatitis C in the UK... Read More
The 30-year-long search for a cure for AIDS, the world’s deadliest viral infection, may get a renewed boost from an unlikely source: a little-used Merck & Co. cancer drug.
Researchers at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill plan to test Merck’s drug, Zolinza, next year in about 20 ... Read More