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ASM Launches 2010 Biodefense And Emerging Diseases Research Meeting Web Site

On behalf of the ASM Biodefense and Emerging Diseases Research Meeting Program Committee and the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), we invite you to participate in the 8th ASM Biodefense Research Meeting to be held in Baltimore, MD February 21-24, 2010.

Since October 2001, ASM has focus... Read More

Using a systems biology approach researchers model the bacterial mechanism of methicillin-resistance in Staph

A recent paper published in PLoS One describes a systems biology approach that models how Staphylococcus aureus develops methicillin resistance.

The obtained results by our integrated approach show that the model describes correctly the whole phenomenon of the methicillin resistance and is ab... Read More

The healing power of parasitic worms?!

This article hearkens back to they day when leeches were considered a standard treatment for removing "bad blood." It's interesting that many are now starting to see some health value with parasitic worm infection, especially in the treatment of allergies. For example "one study conducted in Tai... Read More

In a new twist to the H1N1/Swine Flu pandemic, humans may give the virus to pigs

The strain of influenza, A/H1N1, that is currently pandemic in humans has been shown to be infectious to pigs and to spread rapidly in a trial pig population.

In research published today in Journal of General Virology, Dr Thomas Vahlenkamp and a team of virologists from the Friedrich-Loeffle... Read More

Group B Strep in newborns can suppress immune cell function

Group B Streptococcus (GBS), a bacterial pathogen that causes sepsis and meningitis in newborn infants, is able to shut down immune cell function in order to promote its own survival, according to researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and the Skaggs School of ... Read More

Squashing Superbugs--The Race for New Antibiotics

In this six-page article from Scientific American, editors go in-depth about the background on MRSA and the state of the disease today. The article continues by covering antibiotic drug development, ranging from the study of marine bacteria to genetic experiments designed to produce antibiotic-m... Read More

The first Earthling to journey to Mars - Conan the Bacterium

The Living Interplanetary Flight Experiment, or LIFE, is scheduled to be launched in October and includes specimens of thale cress and brewer's yeast, and a microbe known as Conan the Bacterium. The experiment isdesigned to show if living organisms can survive unprotected in space for long perio... Read More

H1N1/swine flu on collision course with obesity epidemic

" An unexpected characteristic has emerged among many swine flu victims who become severely ill: They are fat."

"Doctors tracking the pandemic say they see a pattern in hospital reports from Glasgow to Melbourne and from Santiago to New York. People infected with the bug who have a body mass ... Read More

Antibiotic extends the life span of mice, reports article in Nature

A paper in Nature reports that the antibiotic, rapamycin, currently used for suppressing the immune system in transplant patients and for treating some cancers, has the amazing attribute of extending the life span of mice

However, the NY Times reports that "the researchers do not know how rap... Read More

The State of Science in America

A new survey published by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press and the American Association for the Advancement of Science checks the pulse of how scientists and the public view the field of science. For example:

17% of the public thinks that U.S. scientific achievements rate a... Read More

Some HIV microbiocides may increase chance of infection

Scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have devised a laboratory test for predicting whether microbicides against HIV are safe for human use. The researchers have also discovered why several supposedly "safe" microbicides made women more susceptible to HIV infect... Read More

Adaptive prediction of environmental changes by microorganisms

This recent paper prevents evidence that microbes (Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae) can evolve to anticipate environmental change. They show that pre-exposure to a stimulus that usually occurs before a second stimulus (i.e. lactose before maltose in E. coli) will improve the abilit... Read More

Unleashing the Power of Beer

German and Slovakian researchers are attempting to solve two problems at once, the volatile market for grain waste and the growing demand for biofuel.

Not to long ago beer manufacturers in Europe simply sold their waste to farmers who either fed it to their animals or used it as fertilizer, "... Read More

Fine Reading: In the Company of Ciliates

Merry Youle from From the Small Things Considered Blog points readers to an article by Hans-Dieter Görtz on the fascinating relationships between ciliates and bacteria.

"Organisms such as ciliates that dine daily on bacteria run the risk of getting an infection. Indeed, ciliates—large, comple... Read More

Exploring Standards To Advance Microbial Genomics

DOE JGI Genome Biology head Nikos Kyrpides believes that science as a whole would benefit from the introduction of common standards for genomic data collection and analysis. In fact, he believes the lack of shared standards is currently hurting research, compromising data during critical procedu... Read More

One Secret To How TB Sticks With You

In an article in the journal Cell, researchers discussed how they recently identified one mechanism used by mycobacterium tuberculosis to resist the immune system. Apparently TB can remain latent in someone's system for decades, resisting mutagens produced by the macrophage where it lives. Tough... Read More

Late Blight Comes Early, Hitting Tomatoes Hard, Experts Say

'Late blight,' which actually appears early in the tomato growing season, is expected to hit hard this year. The fungal infection is actually the same on that destroyed entire potato crops in Ireland during the 1840's, and our cool, wet, cloudy spring is expected to create a particularly nasty o... Read More

Something smells rotten to Feds at Williamsburg cheese factory

An interesting example of how resiliant bacteria can be; a strain of Listeria has taken root at a Williamsburg cheese factory. In 2004 inspectors collected a test sample of bacteria that turns out ot be the same strain as that just collected. Basically, despite disinfection attempts, a strain es... Read More

More People Getting Sick From Bay Bacteria, Study Says

In local news for MicrobeWorld, Vibrio infections in the Chesapeake Bay area are on the rise and several groups think this is the EPA's fault for not cleaning up the Bay properly. Read More

Humans May Give Swine Flu To Pigs In New Twist To Pandemic

Apparently humans can transmit the pandemic strain A/H1N1 on to pigs. Early in the scare, we were worried that humans could catch the virus from pigs, but apparently a human-to-pig scenario is far more likely. Does anyone else thing that we owe pigs an apology (Especially Egypt)? Read More

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