A growing body of evidence suggests that all the antibacterial-wiping, germ-killing cleanliness of the developed world may actually be making us more prone to getting sick — and that a little more dirt might help us stay healthier in the long run.
The idea, known as the hygiene hypothesis, wa... Read More
For a little over four months in 2003, the world was gripped in the clutches of an alarming new disease, one that spread at jet speed to at least 30 countries. Then, as quickly as it emerged, SARS vanished.
The World Health Organization declared severe acute respiratory syndrome contained on ... Read More
Planet Earth is surrounded by a bubble of live bacteria scientists have found.
According to a report by Popular Science the colonies of bacteria live at about 33,000 feet - roughly the cruising height of a passenger jet.
But while it might sound strange, it appears the phenomenon is a cruc... Read More
Scientists trying to put HIV-prevention methods in the hands of women have been disappointed so far in their efforts with vaginal microbicides. In the lab, in vitro testing of microbicides like nonoxynol-9, and cellulose sulfate have produced promising results, but when subjected to clinical tri... Read More
A former microbiology student sent me this link to a promotional spot from a football game. There is a microbiological blooper involved, suggesting that we all need to work harder to promote Microbial Literacy...even on the football field! Read More
As public health officials sound the alarm about the global spread of drug-resistant bacteria, researchers are working to develop more effective antibiotics to counter this dangerous trend. Now, results from a team including a Princeton University scientist offer a possible solution that uses th... Read More
This is a joint project with water color artist Sarah Roberts to study the interaction of bacteria with traditional water colors. Many different types of bacteria have been assessed but only two so far, can be said to paint. When the white pigmented bacterium Proteus mirabilis, and the red Serra... Read More
Hunting the Nightmare Bacteria
Tuesday, October 22, 2013, at 10 p.m. on PBS
Addie Rerecich was a happy 11-year-old girl who loved sports and talked a mile a minute. But when a mysterious pain in her hip landed her in the hospital in 2011, she began a downward spiral into ... Read More
Researchers at The Johns Hopkins University and Yale University have discovered that a specialized receptor, normally found in the nose, is also in blood vessels throughout the body, sensing small molecules created by microbes that line mammalian intestines, and responding to these molecules by ... Read More
A federal advisory committee yesterday recommended increased biosafety precautions for research involving H5N1 avian influenza viruses that can spread among mammals, a step that stems from the ongoing controversy over studies involving lab-modified H5N1 strains that show increased transmissibili... Read More
Microorganisms may get a bad rap in a setting like a hospital, but in the world of research, they’re offering fascinating new insights into human health and disease.
One group of researchers, for example, has linked microbial changes in the gut to the dose-limiting gastrointestinal side effec... Read More
By varying laser and electric fields, scientists can use tiny centrifuge-like whirlpools to separate particles and microbes.
The technology could bring innovative sensors and analytical devices for lab-on-a-chip applications, or miniature instruments that perform measurements normally requiri... Read More
Hi Vince and Dick!
Has anyone volunteered to do transcripts for TWIP? I love this show, and I'd love to be able to contribute in some way. Forgive me if transcripts already exist and I'm just not finding them on the website. If no one is already... Read More
The virus used in the vaccine that helped eradicate smallpox is now working its magic on liver cancer. A genetically engineered version of the vaccinia virus has trebled the average survival time of people with a severe form of liver cancer, with only mild, flu-like side effects.
Thirty p... Read More
The influenza virus genome consists of eight negative sense RNA segments. The segmentation allows efficient genetic exchange among influenza viruses co-infecting the same cell. But this strategy has its costs, namely, that each virion has to ensure that all eight segments are specifically pack... Read More
Almost 1 out of every 3 people in the United States will develop shingles during their lifetime. Despite the approval and recommendation by the FDA of a shingles vaccine for adults over 50, only 16% of American seniors over 60 are vaccinated. Vaccinations are even lower for those aged 50-60. A... Read More
Poliovirus has made the cover of Time magazine. The Time cover image for the 14 January 2013 issue is a model of poliovirus bound to a soluble form of its cellular receptor, CD155. I was part of the team that solved the structure of this complex in 2000, together with the laboratories of Jim Hog... Read More