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Life’s Engines: How Microbes Made the Earth Habitable

Paul G. Falkowski, Distinguished Professor Rutgers University, Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences and Department of Geology, takes viewers deep into the microscopic world to explore how microbes made life on Earth possible—and how human life today would cease to exist without them. Read More

Going All #MicroWarhol

I simply couldn't help myself. I snapped a photograph of a soup can surrounded by plus "Giant Microbes" (giantmicrobes.com) and gave it the Andy Warhol treatment via https://bighugelabs.com/popart.php.

Voila! Microbial Pop Art! Read More

Targeting the gut microbiome to fight heart disease

Is the way to treat heart disease through a person's stomach? According to a new study, the answer is yes. Researchers have found that a compound found in red wine, resveratrol, reduces the risk of heart disease by changing the gut microbiome.

Cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause ... Read More

International Team Fishes New Virus Out of the Sea of Galilee

In 2009, fish in Israel began dying in droves. And not just any fish, but the St. Peter’s fish, tilapia in the Sea of Galilee—the fish famed in the Bible for feeding the multitudes and paying the temple tax for St. Peter.

As head of the fish disease laboratory for Israel’s Ministry of Agricul... Read More

An up-close view of bacterial 'motors'

Bacteria are the most abundant form of life on Earth, and they are capable of living in diverse habitats ranging from the surface of rocks to the insides of our intestines. Over millennia, these adaptable little organisms have evolved a variety of specialized mechanisms to move themselves throug... Read More

Promising new method inhibits TB-causing bacteria

Scientists at the The University of Queensland and the University of California San Francisco have found a new way to inhibit the growth of the bacterium that causes tuberculosis (TB). Read More

Potential pathway for emergence of zoonotic malaria identified

Boston, MA - The parasite responsible for a form of malaria now spreading from macaques to humans in South Asia could evolve to infect humans more efficiently, a step towards enhanced transmission between humans, according to a new study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The resear... Read More

Your viruses could reveal your travel history, and more

The genomes of two distinct strains of the virus that causes the common lip cold sore, herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), have been identified within an individual person -- an achievement that could be useful to forensic scientists for tracing a person's history. The research also opens the d... Read More

Does the hologenome address the whole picture?

How do we define the genetic makeup of an individual? Is it the genetic material found in each cell of that individual (that’s not entirely accurate; mutations and recombinatorial differences can lead to multiple genomes in one individual). And what about the genes carried by our microbiome? The... Read More

Labyrinthulids

Labyrinthulids or commonly known as Slime nets are group of protists of the Class Labyrinthulomycota. These organisms form tube-like structures or filaments (forming a complex net) that serve as tracks where cells glide. They are commonly isolated from seagrass and fallen senescent mangrove lea... Read More

BacterioFiles 246 - Prowling Protist Predator Packs

This episode: Amoebas in soil gang up on and eat much larger roundworms!


(10.5 MB, 11.3 minutes)


Show notes: 
Journal Paper
... Read More

A minimal cell operating system

If the DNA sequence of a cell is like the operating system of a computer, then the smallest cellular OS has just been written. Called Syn3.0, it encodes everything needed to make a viable, autonomously replicating cell.

Mycoplasma is a genus of bacteria that are the smallest known free-living... Read More

TWiV 383: A zillion Zika papers and a Brazilian


Hosts: Vincent RacanielloDickson DespommierAlan Dove and  Read More

Why neural stem cells may be vulnerable to Zika infection

Zika's hypothesized attraction to human neural stem cells may come from its ability to hijack a protein found on the surface of these cells, using it as an entryway to infection. In Cell Stem Cell on March 30, researchers at the University of California, San Francisco show that the AXL surface r... Read More

Structure of Zika virus determined

A near-atomic level map of Zika virus shows its structure to be largely similar to that of dengue virus and other flaviviruses, but with a notable difference in one key surface protein, report scientists funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the Nat... Read More

Global E. coli Testing Market to be Worth US$2.1 bn by 2022, Driven by Rising Demand for Enzyme Substrate Kits

Escherichia coli (E.coli) is a Gram negative rod-shaped bacteria commonly found in intestines of warm blooded animals. Majority of the E.coli strains are harmless, however certain strains are known to cause serious medical complications.The rising number of supportive initiatives from government... Read More

Using citizen science to engage students

Scientists and science educators now recognize the value in explaining what fields don’t understand, in addition to facts supported by years of experimental data. Citizen science projects, which emphasize accessibility of scientific technologies and methods for everyone, allow people without yea... Read More

RESURRECTED DRUG MAY OFFER A WAY TO FIGHT ZIKA, EBOLA

Viruses have proven to be wily foes. Attempts to fend off viruses that cause the common cold or flu have failed, and new viral outbreaks such as dengue, Ebola, or Zika continue to elude drugs.

Given these challenges, scientists are tackling the problem from a different angle. The want to boos... Read More

An ancient killer: Ancestral malarial organisms traced to age of dinosaurs

CORVALLIS, Ore. - A new analysis of the prehistoric origin of malaria suggests that it evolved in insects at least 100 million years ago, and the first vertebrate hosts of this disease were probably reptiles, which at that time would have included the dinosaurs. Read More

A nasal mystery

I have had chronic nasal congestion for my whole life. Sometimes it is worse, sometimes it is better, but it is never completely gone. I have seen ENT specialists and have only ever been told that it must be allergies. I have never believed this, and so I have finally taken matters into my own h... Read More

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