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Identifying Enzymes to Explode Superbugs

With the worrying rise of antibiotic-resistant superbugs like MRSA, scientists from a wide range of disciplines are teaming up to identify alternative therapies to keep them at bay.

One long-considered solution is the use of lytic enzymes which attack bacteria by piercing their cell walls. Ly... Read More

Protecting embryos against microbes

Headed by the Kiel zoologist Professor Thomas Bosch, a team of scientists from Germany and Russia succeeded in deciphering the mechanisms, for the first time, with which embryos of the freshwater polyp Hydra protect themselves against bacterial colonization. The paper is published this week in t... Read More

Chemists fold DNA into Möbius strips

Möbius strips are special loops that only have one continuous side. Now we've built the smallest Möbius strips ever - out of DNA. Here you can see the nanometer-sized DNA loops, folded like origami.

The ability to create complex structures on the tiniest of scales is one of the great challeng... Read More

Measles Vaccine, 1960

The first scientific description of measles dates from the ninth century, and the disease was first mentioned in The New-York Daily Times on Oct. 14, 1851, when the newspaper was not yet one month old.

A front-page “Weekly Report of Deaths” that day noted that the disease had killed two peo... Read More

British scientists search for alien life in Earth's atmosphere

Scientists, who are set to launch a mission to search for bacteria, believe they could be close to discovering alien life forms much closer to home - on the outer fringes of Earth's atmosphere.

British scientists, working with the European Space Agency, would launch a balloon carrying instrum... Read More

The Claim: A Soap-and-Water Rinse Gets Produce Cleanest

The prospect of ingesting pesticides and other contaminants can make supermarket produce seem less than appetizing. Buying organic lowers the risk, but is no guarantee against food-borne pathogens.

Scientists have found some effective household measures that can eliminate germs and pesticid... Read More

Michigan's Eastern equine encephalitis outbreak worst in 30 years

More cases of Eastern equine encephalitis have been reported in horses in Michigan.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture told the Kalamazoo Gazette that through Thursday there have been 130 cases this year. Officials have called this year's outbreak the worst in 30 years. Read More

Study suggests voluntary HIV screening should be implemented on a population-wide basis in France

In France, roughly 40,000 HIV-infected persons are unaware of their HIV infection. Although previous studies have evaluated the cost-effectiveness of routine HIV screening in the United States, differences in both the epidemiology of infection and HIV testing behaviors warrant a setting-specific... Read More

Horizontal gene transfer in microbes much more frequent than previoulsy thought

Virus-like particles called gene transfer agents (GTAs) are produced by alpha-proteobacteria and pass from one microbe to another, taking random pieces of genetic material up to 1,000 bases long with them. The high frequency with which this has been found to occur may provide a mechanism by whic... Read More

Frogs on verge of dying out in parts of Britain due to disease

Common frogs, which are the most widespread species of frog in Britain, have suffered declines of around 80 per cent in the areas worst hit by the disease, known as ranavirus.

Research by biologists at the Zoological Society of London also fear that the virus could be having an equally devast... Read More

Mere Visual Perception of Other People’s Disease Symptoms Facilitates a More Aggressive Immune Response

Abstract

An experiment (N = 28) tested the hypothesis that the mere visual perception of disease-connoting cues promotes a more aggressive immune response. Participants were exposed either to photographs depicting symptoms of infectious disease or to photographs depicting guns. After incubati... Read More

Major Funding To Study Prevention Of Drug-Resistant Staph Infections

A UC Irvine infectious disease specialist has received a three-year, $10 million grant to explore the effectiveness of new methods to prevent staph infections in people who harbor MRSA bacteria when they're discharged from the hospital.

The UCI study, led by Dr. Susan Huang - medical directo... Read More

Identification Of A New Bacterial Foe In Cystic Fibrosis

Exacerbations in cystic fibrosis (CF) may be linked to chronic infection with a bacterium called Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, which was previously thought to simply colonize the CF lung. The finding that chronic infection with S. maltophilia is independently linked with an increased risk of ex... Read More

TWiV 101 Letters

Russ writes:


I think this image from www.3d4medical.com is great!


This is a cool app for the iPad. This would make a great pick of the week


Russ


Julian writes:<... Read More

TWiV 101: Sizing up adenovirus

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On episode #101 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent, Alan, Rich, Dickson, and Hamish review the three-dimensional structure of adenovirus, and the role of adenovirus type 36 in obesity. Read More

Potent cancer fighter lies in Keys algae beds

Researchers working to conquer one of the nation's deadliest cancers think they may have found a silver bullet in what might seem a most unlikely place: the blue-green algae beds of Pickles Reef, off the coast of Key Largo.

Meanwhile, an Islamorada inhabitant, the bright orange, two-inch-long... Read More

Ancient "Fossil" Virus Shows Infection to Be Millions of Years Old

Viruses can be thought of as hyperspeed shape-shifters, organisms that can adapt quickly to overcome barriers to infection. But recent research has been finding ancient traces of many viruses in animal genomes, DNA insertions that have likely been there for much longer than the viruses were pre... Read More

H1N1 flu virus can mutate in immunosuppressed patients: study

Patients with suppressed immune systems can quickly develop H1N1 flu infections that resist all known drugs, doctors in the Netherlands reported on Wednesday.

The case of a 5-year-old leukemia patient who died from swine flu after the virus mutated in his body showed that people with weakened... Read More

Mosquito Gene Examined for New Disease Response

An Iowa State University researcher searched for new genes that are turned on during infection in a type of mosquito that is not only a pest, but transmits disease-causing pathogens.

Lyric Bartholomay, assistant professor of entomology, along with colleagues from around the world, infected th... Read More

Antibodies with More “Hang Time” May Give Researchers a Jump on New HIV Vaccine Strategy

Researchers are inching their way toward a new HIV vaccine strategy by studying the cells of people who have naturally—and bafflingly—strong immune defenses against the virus.

Last year, Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator Michel C. Nussenzweig's team figured out how to isolate key ... Read More
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