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Rare seawater 'flesh-eating' bacteria kills 35 a year

The death last week of a Florida man from an uncommon flesh-eating bacterium was the state's ninth so far this year.

The bacterium is in the same family as those that cause cholera.

Henry Konietzky, 59, of Palm Coast, Fla., died Sept. 23 after setting crab traps two days earlier in the riv... Read More

Bio-artist colors textiles with deadly bacteria and antibiotics

Would you cuddle up with a quilt stained with MRSA? Artist Anna Dumitriu challenges the relationship between humans and bacteria by staining textiles with superbugs.

As part of her artist's residency on the UK Clinical Research Consortium Project “Modernising Medical Microbiology” at the Univ... Read More

Bacteria Enhance Growth of Fruit Trees Up to 40 Percent

Improvement in reforestation and agriculture is possible thanks to the work of scientists in the Center of Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) who use different strains of fungi and bacteria to promote development and health in trees, which have enabled them to accelerate growth of differe... Read More

When Will We Have a Vaccine for Ebola Virus?

The latest outbreak of Ebola virus in west Africa is the worst ever—as of Monday, it had infected more than 1,200 people and claimed at least 672 victims since this spring. Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone all have confirmed cases. An official at Doctors Without Borders has declared the outbreak... Read More

Baby born with AIDS in Los Angeles may be cured of virus, doctors hope

Doctors are reporting a second instance of a baby born with AIDS going into remission, or possibly cured, by aggressive treatment after birth. The first case, a child from Mississippi who is now 3 1/2, was reported last April. Doctors revealed the case Wednesday at an AIDS conference in Boston. ... Read More

Tube morphology

Three organisms inoculated in TSB to look at tube morphology. From left to right:
Staphylococcus aureus: flocculent growth/turbid, growth throughout the tube.
Mycobacterium smegmatis: pellicle, growth at the top of the tube. M. smegmatis tends to stick to the tube and grow up the side.
Ba... Read More

What Are The Odds That an Artificially Enhanced Flu Strain Could Escape a Lab?

A controversy that has been brewing for several years in the world of influenza research may ignite again with the publication last week of a new paper that’s worth a read. I haven’t to date written about the controversy, which centers on what’s called “gain of function” research. In the case of... Read More

Early Exposure To Bacteria Protects Children From Asthma And Allergies

Babies who are exposed to both bacteria and allergens in the first year of life are less likely to develop asthma and allergies, a study finds.

It's the latest wrinkle in the hygiene hypothesis — the notion that exposure to bacteria trains the infant immune system to attack bad bugs and ignor... Read More

A Newly Discovered Microbe Could Accelerate Global Warming

Teaming beneath Sweden's thawing permafrost is a previously undiscovered microbe known as methanongen (Candidatus Methanoflorens Stordalenmirensis). As its name suggests, the microbe does one thing really well: release methane into the atmosphere, presenting a feedback loop of gas production tha... Read More

Smells Like … An Armpit Infection?

One man's irrepressible body odor was the result of a bacterial infection of his armpit hair, according to a new report of the case.

The 40-year-old man told his doctors he'd had armpit odor and "dirty" armpit hair for the last four years.

There was a "creamy yellow" substance on the man's... Read More

Evidence-based antibiotic usage

New recommendation encourages physicians to prescribe _antibacterials_ instead of antibiotics for bacterial infections. This recommendation is based on compelling evidence that the word "antibiotic" confuses almost everyone, including some doctors. The confusion leads to strong patient demands... Read More

First Fecal Transplant Bank Opens

OpenBiome, a company based in Cambridge, Mass., has opened a facility that collects stool samples from healthy, pre-screened individuals. It then processes those "donations" and readies them for shipment to hospitals, where they are put into the colons of people with the deadly gut infection Cl... Read More

Live/Dead Stain Microscopy

Tannery tanning fluid sample stained with Live/Dead BacLight under UV light. Either 40x or 100x oil immersion. Green bacteria indicate living cells, while Orange bacteria indicate dead cells. Some of the green cells were moving around even after staining! Read More

Neanderthal Viruses Found in Modern Humans

Ancient viruses from Neanderthals have been found in modern human DNA by researchers at Oxford University and Plymouth University.

The researchers compared genetic data from fossils of Neanderthals and another group of ancient human ancestors called Denisovans to data from modern-day cancer p... Read More

TWiV 296: The real Batman, Linfa Wang

Vincent visits the Australian Animal Health Laboratory in Geelong, Australia and speaks with Linfa about his work on bats and bat viruses.


Hosts: Vincent Racaniello


Guest:  Read More

NASA To Test Microgravity’s Effect On Bacteria, Antibiotics

NASA’s Antibiotic Effectiveness in Space (AES-1) investigation is launching in January and it will be offering scientists more insight into how bacteria behave in microgravity.

Bacteria are considered the most successful life forms, and they are hard to run from, even in space. In a micrograv... Read More

Artificial magnetic bacteria 'turn' food into natural drugs

Scientists from the University of Granada have successfully created magnetic bacteria that could be added to foodstuffs and could, after ingestion, help diagnose diseases of the digestive system like stomach cancer. These important findings constitute the first use of a food as a natural drug an... Read More

Better batteries through biology?

MIT researchers find a way to boost lithium-air battery performance, with the help of modified viruses.

Lithium-air batteries have become a hot research area in recent years: They hold the promise of drastically increasing power per battery weight, which could lead, for example, to electric c... Read More

Streptococcus mitis on blood agar

Growth of Streptococcus mitis on blood agar demonstrating alpha hemolysis seen as a greenish color around the growing colonies due to a reduction of the hemoglobin to methemoglobin in the surrounding agar. Image taken using transmitted light. Read More

Commonly used pain relievers have added benefit of fighting bacterial infection

Some commonly used drugs that combat aches and pains, fever, and inflammation are also thought to have the ability to kill bacteria. New research reveals that these drugs, better known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, act on bacteria in a way that is fundamentally different from current ... Read More

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