For the first time, DNA tools have successfully pinpointed the geographic origin of shark fins sold dried in markets to satisfy the demand for shark fin soup, a Chinese delicacy.
Using CSI-like genetic methods, scientists have traced scalloped hammerhead shark fins from a burgeoning Hong Kong... Read More
New swine flu infections continue to drop across the United States, confirmation that the pandemic’s fall wave has peaked, according to figures posted online Monday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But the number of children and teenagers killed by swine flu is still rising.... Read More
Federal food safety scientists are waging biological warfare to combat salmonella in tomatoes.
Scientists with the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition are studying naturally occurring bacteria that can fight the bacteria that causes salmonella and to ke... Read More
A team of scientists from The Forsyth Institute, the University of Connecticut Health Center, the CDC and the Wadsworth Center, have used state-of-the-art technology to elucidate the molecular architecture of Treponema pallidum, the bacterium which causes syphilis. The previously unknown detaile... Read More
Viruses of soil bacteria (phages) evolve to improve their ability to infect the bacterial hosts that surround them. This is shown in a new study by Dutch researcher Michiel Vos, published in the journal Science. Phages appear to be better able to infect bacteria from the same small soil sample t... Read More
Molecular biology for years meant breaking down living cells to their smallest component parts, the genes and proteins that govern what a cell does. But a list of parts tells only so much. To understand how living cells really work, biologists are now trying to visualize how the parts are assemb... Read More
A new drug-resistant strain of bacteria has emerged in the last decade in Africa and is causing unusual numbers of deaths there, British and African researchers said on Monday.
The strain, a variant of Salmonella typhimurium, is named ST313. Its genome was decoded by researchers from the Wel... Read More
The use of antibiotic eye drops for conjunctivitis has increased by almost half since they became available over the counter at chemists in 2005, data obtained by Oxford University researchers has shown.
This is despite the fact that evidence from clinical trials from around the same time sho... Read More
Two-thirds of store-bought chickens are contaminated with salmonella, campylobacter or both. That's according to the most recent testing done by consumer advocacy group Consumer's Union and described in January issue of Consumer Reports.
The results may not be as bad as you think. The contami... Read More
With the unanticipated shortage of the new H1N1 swine flu vaccine, my life as a practicing internist suddenly changed. My office phone began ringing off the hook with worried calls. Fear of the new, unknown vaccine was suddenly replaced by fear of not having it.
This panic was overblown, as t... Read More
Ever since the previously unknown SARS virus emerged from southern China in 2003, University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston virologists have focused on finding the source of the pathogen's virulence -- its ability to cause disease. In the 2003 epidemic, for example, between 5 and 10 percen... Read More
Andrew Logan has what every manufacturer craves: an endless source of free raw materials that his suppliers can't wait to dump and a market starving for his product.
Logan, a biologist in Idaho Springs, Colo., turns waste from breweries into a fish-food ingredient. His company, Oberon FMR, sp... Read More
The urge to celebrate during the darkest part of the year - to feast, to sing and talk story about great stars (the sun), to burn candles for divinity or our own inner light - seems nearly universal. Our ancestors learned that the nights shortened as surely as they had lengthened, that the sun p... Read More
Amiodarone, a drug long used for treating irregular heart rhythms, can also be effective against Chagas disease and leishmaniasis skin lesions, according to Alberto Paniz-Mondolfi at Columbia University in New York, N.Y., and his collaborators in Venezuela. Both these parasitic diseases are ende... Read More
The spread of antibiotic resistance among bacteria is a growing problem, making certain diseases increasingly difficult to treat. New strategies for attacking the bacteria are needed, yet virtually no novel-mechanism antibiotics are currently in development.
Gram-negative bacteria - such as t... Read More
Federal health officials on Wednesday linked the H1N1 flu epidemic to a sharp rise in the number of severe bacterial infections.
Anne Schuchat, a physician at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said the national trend was "worrisome" but not unexpected.
"In previous pandemics,... Read More
Tired of the portraits, landscapes and abstract art that peppers the walls of most art museums? According to Dutch photographer Wim von Egmond, there’s one art subject that has been ignored for centuries and finally deserves its due: microscopic organisms.
A soon-to-be-implemented policy for scientists who are permitted to conduct research in national parks will give the National Park Service a share of any profits from their work.
The policy is expected to go into effect early next year following more than a decade of concern and a lawsuit ove... Read More
Tiny magnetic discs just a millionth of a metre in diameter could be used to used to kill cancer cells, according to a study published on Sunday.
Laboratory tests found the so-called "nanodiscs", around 60 billionths of a metre thick, could be used to disrupt the membranes of cancer cells, ca... Read More
Living like a pig could be good for you. Research has shown how dirty piglets obtain 'friendly' bacteria that help them to develop healthy immune systems later in life.
The results, published online in BMC Biology1, provide the first direct link between dirty living, immune health and genetic... Read More