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The Strange Connection Between Germs and Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes was as much a scientist as a detective. Maybe that’s because his creator, Arthur Conan Doyle, was influenced by a detective of science: Robert Koch, a German doctor who helped prove the existence of germs. In his new book, The Remedy, Thomas Goetz traces connections between the t... Read More

TWiV 265: This year in virology



Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Alan Dove Read More

HIV gets the zinc finger

Because all animal viruses initiate infection by binding to a receptor on the cell surface, this step has long been considered a prime target for antiviral therapy. Unfortunately, drugs that block virus attachment to cells have never shown much promise. Another approach, which is to ablate the r... Read More

Human Sweat's Filthy Attributes Stop Bacteria-Fighting Brass

Human sweat is actually much dirtier and bacteria-filled than we initially thought. Scientists have found that sweaty hands can reduce the effect that brass objects have of fighting bacteria. Brass objects can be found in hospitals and schools and sweat can fight off its abilities just an hour a... Read More

Bacillus subtilis

Gram stain of B. subtilis showing characteristic G +streptobacillus morphology. Read More

TWiV special: MERS-coronavirus in dromedary camels



Host: Vincent Racaniello


Guests: Read More

Swirling and whirling: the movement of spherical bacteria

Research on bacterial movement tends to focus on the rod-shaped bacteria. With the aid of small waving flagella, each bacterial cell can push itself in the direction it wishes to go. They can also move in groups, forming large swarms that ripple and slide their way across Petri dishes. Spherical... Read More

Multiple protocol breaches behind anthrax exposure at U.S. federal labs

The safety breach at a government lab that may have exposed 84 workers to live anthrax centered on a pivotal lapse in procedure: researchers working with the bacteria waited 24 hours to be sure they had killed the pathogens, half the time required by a new scientific protocol.

The lab designe... Read More

Bacteria-Eating Viruses 'Magic Bullets in the War On Superbugs'

A specialist team of scientists from the University of Leicester has isolated viruses that eat bacteria -- called phages -- to specifically target the highly infectious hospital superbug Clostridium difficile (C. diff).

Now an exciting new collaboration between the University of Leicester, th... Read More

The truth behind the '5-Second Rule': When in doubt, throw it out

The burger patty that slides off the plate, the ice cream treat that plops on the picnic table, the hot dog that rolls off the grill – conventional wisdom has it that you have five seconds to pick it up before it is contaminated.

Fact or folklore?

“A dropped item is immediately contaminate... Read More

HIV-infected H9 T Cell

Scanning electron micrograph of an HIV-infected H9 T cell. Credit: National Institutes of Health/Department of Health and Human Services (NIAID). Read More

Virus-induced fever might change bacteria from commensal to pathogen

Neisseria meningitidis may cause septicemia (bacteria in the blood) and meningitis (infection of the membrane surrounding the brain), but the bacterium colonizes the nasopharynx in 10-20% of the human population without causing disease. Although understanding how the bacterium changes from a com... Read More

New chip lets scientists listen in on bacteria

Researchers at Columbia University are turning that optics-based imaging approach on its head, instead developing a chip based on integrated circuit technology that lets them not only electrochemically image bacteria, but listen in on them as well.

Click on 'source' to read more. Read More

Cubist & Cambridge Science Festival Launch "Germ Challenge" Science Contest

LEXINGTON, Mass. & CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--February 13, 2014--
Cambridge Science Festival and Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: CBST) today launched the 2014 "Germ Challenge," a contest designed to engage young people in science by inviting them to create educational and creativ... Read More

How U.S. Hospitals Are Planning To Stop The Deadly MERS Virus

In the past month, Middle East Respiratory syndrome has morphed from a little-known disease in the Arabian Peninsula to a major global health concern, with more than 300 cases in Saudi Arabia in April, 54 of them fatal.

Two cases have been reported in the U.S. as well — one in Indiana and one... Read More

New drugs for bad bugs

Washington University in St Louis chemist Timothy Wencewicz says we’ll stay ahead of antibiotic resistance only if we find drugs with new scaffolds, or core chemical structures. One promising candidate, an antibiotic made by a bacterium than infects plants, caught his attention because it contai... Read More

TWiP 66 letters

 


Andre writes:


Dear Vincent,


To my great delight, I just discovered your podcasts twiv, twim and twip.


The first twip I heard, about Strongyloides stercoralis, although informative and interesting, seemed to have several inaccuracies. I w... Read More

UGA researchers uncover how bacteria helps create clouds

When a clear sunny day turns into clouds, people used it to explain their grave mood without taking into consideration how clouds can affect global warming in the atmosphere. But University of Georgia marine researchers have discovered the process of an anti-greenhouse gas known as DMSP (dimethy... Read More

Researchers map gene differences in yellow fever, malaria mosquitoes, to help prevent disease

Virginia Tech entomologists have developed a chromosome map for about half of the genome of the mosquito Aedes agypti, the major carrier of dengue fever and yellow fever.

With the map, researchers can compare the chromosome organization and evolution between this mosquito and the major carri... Read More

Soil microbiomes can set plant flowering time

Scientists grew Boechera stricta plants in soil inoculated with microbes from natural B. stricta habitats to study the flowering time phenotype.

The technique researchers employed to isolate soil microbes to study their effect on a single plant phenotype can potentially be applied to other st... Read More

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