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TWiEVO 5: Looking at straw colored fruit bats through a straw

We have some virology for you on the latest episode of the science show This Week in Evolution. Nels and I are joined by Kartik Chandran and Sara Sawyer who talk about their work showing how the filovirus receptor NPC1 controls susceptibility of bats to Ebolavirus infection. They have found that... Read More

Culture-independent discovery of new archaeal virus

What kinds of microbes do you associate with hot springs? Maybe microbial mats? Thermus aquaticus and the discovery of Taq polymerase? Archaea, previously (and erroneously) thought to be strict extremophiles? Viruses may not be the first microbial subtype that springs to mind (pun intended) but ... Read More

Diverse fungi inhabit chronic wounds and inhibit healing

Gruesome, ghastly, grisly. These are the words that popped into my head when I googled images of diabetic foot ulcers—one of the most common chronic wounds creating a silent and costly epidemic in healthcare.

Perhaps even more shocking is the mortality rate connected to these open wounds, wh... Read More

Zika virus infection of the nervous system

Evidence is mounting that Zika virus is neurotropic (able to infect cells of the nervous system) and neurovirulent (causes disease of the nervous system) in humans. Read More

European Antibiotics Awareness Day

On November, 18th takes place the 8th edition of European Antibiotic Awareness Day.
Find on the website data, facts and stories to share.
Help us fight antibiotic resistance! Read More

TWiV 401: Vector victorious

Zika virus spreads in the USA, a Zika virus DNA vaccine goes into phase I trials, and how mosquito bites enhance virus replication and disease, from the friendly TWiFolk Vincent, Dickson, Alan, and Kathy.


Hosts:  Read More

TWiEVO 2: Faster than a speeding virus

On episode #2 of the new science show This Week in Evolution, Nels and Vincent talk about how a cellular enzyme contributes to the very high mutation rate of human immunodeficiency virus type 1.

You can find TWiEVO #2 at microbe.tv/twievo. Read More

Cities have individual microbial signatures

Greg Caporaso was sifting through blog posts on microbe.net, which covers the microbiology of built environments, when a study idea sparked for him and colleagues Jeff Siegel, Scott Kelley and Rob Knight.

“It became clear to me that there was a lot of interesting work being done to understand... Read More

TWiP 111: Bug bites

The TWiP trio solve the case of the bug bites all in a row, and talk about a secreted Toxoplasma protein that is central to the parasite's manipulation of host cells.


Hosts: Vincent Racan... Read More

A growing concern: why whooping cough incidence may be increasing in a highly vaccinated population

News headlines highlighting an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease often leave readers shaking their heads. These diseases – measles, chickenpox, whooping cough – could have been prevented if only the infected children had been vaccinated. Right? Well, in the case of whooping cough, the si... Read More

Virus Watch: Building Zika Virus

In this new video episode of Virus Watch, you'll see how the Zika virus particle is built, and how it binds to an antibody that blocks infection. All in gorgeous three dimensional views provided by recent structure studies. Read More

Diagnostic guidelines for bloodstream infections aim to shorten time to accurate therapy

One of the most dangerous places for an infection to occur is in the bloodstream. Septicemia, when microbes are present in the blood, not only allows bacteria access to other internal organs through the highway of our circulatory system, but also can cause a massive inflammatory response, leadin... Read More

A role for siderophores in Klebsiella pneumoniae pathogenesis

Despite increasing awareness of Klebsiella pneumoniae as a public health risk, there has been relatively little understood about its mechanisms of pathogenesis.

The bacterium, estimated to be the third most common cause of hospital-acquired infections in the United States in a recent study, c... Read More

Colors of Superbug !

Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolated from animals. The organism was grown on seven different agar medium. On blood agar (Centre), it forms small to medium sized colonies surrounded by weak beta-hemolysis. It shows diverse types of color in different chromogenic medium- pin... Read More

TWiEVO 3: Recombination is for the birds

In episode #3 of the new science show This Week in Evolution, Nels and Vincent examine another important driver of evolution: recombination. The results of two papers in which the process is studied in finches and in yeast lead to the unexpected conclusion that recombination evolves more slowly ... Read More

MMP #14: A look at several microorganisms involved with electricity.

Host: Jeff Fox with special guests, Gemma Reguera and Geoffrey Gadd.


Gemma Reguera of Michigan State University in East Lansing and Geoffrey Gadd of the University of Dundee in Scotland talk with Jeff Fox about their efforts, to probe some of the electrical properties of materials pro... Read More

Will you share? Social versus selfish mechanisms affect selective conditions

The previous post mentioned the onset of antibiotic resistance as one of the scarier, if less sensationalist, outbreaks of our time. We generally discuss antibiotic resistance in medically relevant microbes (on this blog and in the news), where resistance means the ability of disease-causing mic... Read More

Rubella virus and birth defects

Amidst the fear surrounding Zika virus, remember that there are over 100,000 children born each year with birth defects caused by infection with rubella virus.

Rubella virus is a member of the Togaviridae family, which also includes chikungunya virus. The genome is a 9.7 kilobase, positive st... Read More

Shiga toxin: no preassembly required

The molecular order of events is important in virulence, and a new paper published in the Journal of Bacteriology looks at the order of events necessary for bacterial toxin delivery to a host cell. Specifically, the authors looked at the assembly of Shiga toxin, produced by Shigella dysenteriae ... Read More

One microbial pathogen 'disguised' as another leads to misdiagnoses

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s likely a duck – so goes the saying that illustrates the simplest explanation is usually the right one. But what about duck decoys used in conjunction with bird calls? Misidentification can be a deadly error – and the same goes for microbes. Mi... Read More
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