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Siblings Strike Again

Bacteria capable of sporulation go out of their way to grow rather than sporulate. They will therefore try to obtain needed nutrients, even at the cost of killing their neighbors. When starved for nutrients, cells of Bacillus subtilis engage in cannibalism, that is they lyse their siblings and u... Read More

Prokaryotes considered

As a college biology major during the 1970s I was taught that cells in which the genetic material is separated from the cytoplasm by a nuclear membrane – such as those of animals, fungi, plants, and protists – are called eukaryotes. In contrast, the DNA of bacteria is not bounded by such a struc... Read More

Problem-solving bacteria crack sudoku

The appeal of sudoku has spread to the prokaryotic world. A strain of Escherichia coli bacteria can now solve the logic puzzles – with some help from a group of students at the University of Tokyo, Japan.

"Because sudoku has simple rules, we felt that maybe bacteria could solve it for us, as ... Read More

Canada finds more infections with NDM-1 resistance factor

A recently identified enzyme that can make gram-negative bacteria resistant to nearly all antibiotics is back in the news with reports of several recent cases in Canada and two in Austria.

Five Canadians have had infections with bacteria carrying the NDM-1 enzyme in the past 3 months, bringin... Read More

New Low-Cost Method to Deliver Vaccine Shows Promise

Researchers have developed a promising new approach to vaccination for rotavirus, a common cause of severe diarrheal disease that is responsible for approximately 500,000 deaths among children in the developing world every year.

In a study published in the November issue of Clinical and Vacci... Read More

Haiti faces years of cholera

Cholera deaths are climbing sharply in Haiti, after the infection reached the capital, Port-au-Prince, as feared. Epidemiologists who have studied other outbreaks predict that hundreds of thousands of Haitians will be stricken by the infection over the next few years as cholera takes hold in the... Read More

2600 Year-Old Plague Microbe Traced to China

The microbe responsible for plague evolved in or around China more than 2,600 years ago and spread around the globe in the following millennia, according to the most comprehensive genetic study to map out the family tree of the bacterium known as Yersinia pestis.

Y. pestis' pedigree is not on... Read More

Telltale bacteria could reveal time of drowning

When a fisherman's body washed ashore on Australia's Queensland coast last week, police initially had no way of working out when he had died. "Unless a body is witnessed entering the water, there is no reliable method for determining the length of time that a body has been submerged," says Gemma... Read More

Designer bacteria can heal cracks in concrete buildings

Researchers have designed bacteria that can produce a special glue to knit together cracks in concrete structures.

The genetically modified microbe has been programmed to swim down fine cracks in concrete and once at the bottom it produces a mixture of calcium carbonate and a bacterial glue. ... Read More

Probiotics May Ease Kids' Belly Aches

A daily dose of "friendly bacteria" could provide relief for kids suffering from the cruel pain of a chronic tummy ache, suggests a new Italian study.

Between 10 and 15 percent of school-aged children suffer from frequent stomach pain. Yet little evidence exists to date for helpful medication... Read More

Mundo de los Microbios - Podcasting in Puerto Rico

Gary Toranzos, host of MicrobeWorld's Mundo de los Microbios, and all his gear recording a podcast at the University of Puerto Rico. Read More

Dick Despommier at TEDxMidAtlantic

Dick Despommier, co-host of This Week in Virology and host of This Week in Parasitism speaking about vertical farming at TEDxMidAtlantic 2010 in Washington, D.C. Read More

CDC’s ‘Get Smart Week’ Aims to Outsmart Bacteria

Outsmarting the enemy will take a team effort. That's the message of the "Get Smart About Antibiotics" campaign from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It aims to educate the public, doctors and agricultural producers that antibiotics need to be used more judiciously, ... Read More

Death toll from Haiti cholera outbreak rises above 900

Less than a month after a cholera outbreak erupted in Haiti, the infection has claimed 917 lives, AFP reported.

Haiti has long struggled to overcome political strife and poverty, but this year has been particularly hard on its citizens. In January, a massive earthquake killed an estimated 230... Read More

New Microorganisms Linked to Gill Disease in Salmon

Gill disease may have several different causes, such as adverse environmental impacts or a variety of microorganisms. Terje M. Steinum's doctoral research has identified microorganisms that may lead to gill disease, thereby making a significant contribution to our understanding of such diseases ... Read More

"El podcast del microbio" Nº 110 y 121: Bacterial Heavyweight Championship

The Nº 120 and 121 of "El podcast del microbio" are dedicated to the experiments for measuring the extreme nanoforce developed by microbes. En "El podcast del microbio" Nº 120 y 121 están dedicados a los experimentos para medir las increíbles nanoferzas desarrolladas por los microbios.
{mp3remo... Read More

Of Terms in Biology: Bacterial Ploidy

Ploidy is not a term that has much currency in bacteriology, but it does make an appearance once in a while. Ploidy, as per the dictionary, is the number of chromosomes per cell. It’s a term widely used for cells that are generally uninucleated, such as our gametes and our somatic cells. The pro... Read More

Ask a Biologist: Bringing Science to the Public

In the early days of the Internet, before Google-powered searches retrieved information on even the most arcane subjects with a single keystroke, inquiring minds sought the advice of experts directly. A critical online intermediary between seekers and experts was the “Ask a (fill in the blank)” ... Read More

NZ kiwifruit crisis continues

A kiwifruit-killing disease is spreading throughout orchards in New Zealand, threatening to devastate the nation's billion-dollar industry.

On Monday, it was confirmed that 13 Bay of Plenty orchards had been struck with bacteria pseudomonas syringae pv actinidiae - or PSA - up from the eight ... Read More

TWiV 107: Warning - this virus contains email

Unable to embed Rapid1Pixelout audio player. Please double check that:  1)You have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.  2)This web page does not have any fatal Javascript errors.  3)The audio-player.js file of Rapid1Pixelout has been included.

On episode #107 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent, Dickson, Alan, and Rich answer listener questions about poliovirus, social media, dengue, influenza, evolution, gel filtration, and muc... Read More

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