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Kenya: Pig Farmers Are Focus of Effort to Stop Spread of Parasite That Causes Epilepsy

Researchers in Kenya have been trying a seemingly unlikely tactic to prevent epilepsy: teaching farmers to tether their pigs.

The goal is to stop the pigs from spreading a type of tapeworm that can infect the brain in humans and that is a major cause of epilepsy in poor countries, particularl... Read More

Asking 'What would nature do?' leads to a way to break down a greenhouse gas

A recent discovery in understanding how to chemically break down the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into a useful form opens the doors for scientists to wonder what organism is out there—or could be created—to accomplish the task.

University of Michigan biological chemist Steve Ragsdale, along... Read More

Germs, bathrooms and door handles...

A story from CTV Ottawa on what you can pick up from a bathroom door handle...and if it could lead to infection. Read More

Is This the Answer to Hospital-Acquired Infections?

I have written quite a bit — probably far too much for the average person’s taste — about the poor state of hand hygiene in hospitals, and the resulting proliferation of bacterial infections. I often think I should shut up already about this problem. After all, it’s been 10 years since the Insti... Read More

House Bill Proposes a Federal Open-Access Policy

Congressman Mike Doyle (D – Penn.) has introduced a bill in the House of Representatives that would require that the results from nearly all publicly-funded research be made available online within six months after they are published in a peer-reviewed journal.

The Federal Research Public Acc... Read More

Birds of a feather don't always respond together to infection

Different populations of the same animal species don’t always use fever to fight infection the same way.

The findings may help scientists predict the locations where diseases carried by animals are most likely to take hold—and could forecast where infections—including those that can have seri... Read More

New species of human malaria recognized

Scientists investigating ovale malaria, a form of the disease thought to be caused by a single species of parasite, have confirmed that the parasite is actually two similar but distinct species which do not reproduce with each other, according to research published in The Journal of Infectious D... Read More

Substance in Breast Milk Kills Cancer Cells, Study Suggests

A substance found in breast milk can kill cancer cells, reveal studies carried out by researchers at Lund University and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

HAMLET was discovered by chance when researchers were studying the antibacterial properties of breast milk. Further studies showed tha... Read More

One state microbe chosen, 49 to go

The New York Times reports that Wisconsin has just appointed the cheese-making bacterium Lactococcus lactis as its official state microbe. It's the first state to do so, which got us thinking: what should the other states' microbes be?

Based on its popularity there, California should surely e... Read More

Animal Plague Case Confirmed Near San Jon

A case of animal plague has been confirmed in eastern New Mexico and officials say human cases could soon follow. The New Mexico Department of Health says lab reports confirmed a case of plague in a dog near San Jon in Quay County this week. They say the virus is transmitted to humans through ... Read More

I'm all ears!

This mechanical-chemical-biological tour through how human hearing works - or doesn't work, and the implications that has is worth the read. Here's hoping as well this research bears fruit & helps end hearing loss/deafness. Read More

TEDTalks: Michael Specter: The Danger of Science Denial

Vaccine-autism claims, "Frankenfood" bans, the herbal cure craze: All point to the public's growing fear (and, often, outright denial) of science and reason, says Michael Specter. He warns the trend spells disaster for human progress. (Recorded at TED2010, February 2010 in Long Beach, CA). Read More

Scientists find chicken antibodies may help prevent H5N1 pandemic

Scientists have discovered for the first time that antibodies in common eggs laid by hens vaccinated against the H5N1 virus can potentially prevent a possible H5N1 pandemic, raising the possibility that the same principle could be applied to the current H1N1 influenza pandemic.

A team of scie... Read More

Eurobarometer on antimicrobial resistance highlights areas for action

On 9 April 2010, the European Commission published the results of a Eurobarometer on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) which demonstrate the need for further progress on the issue in the European Union (EU) [1]. The report highlights public attitudes towards the use of antibiotics which are of conc... Read More

Oral Activated Charcoal Prevents Experimental Cerebral Malaria in Mice and in a Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial in Man Did Not Interfere with the Pharmacokinetics of Parenteral Artesunate

Safe, cheap and effective adjunct therapies preventing the development of, or reducing the mortality from, severe malaria could have considerable and rapid public health impact. Oral activated charcoal (oAC) is a safe and well tolerated treatment for acute poisoning, more recently shown to have ... Read More

Metagenomic Sequencing of an In Vitro-Simulated Microbial Community

A new data resource for measuring the accuracy of metagenomic binning methods, created by in vitro-simulation of a metagenomic community, can be used to complement previous in silico benchmark studies. In constructing a synthetic community and sequencing its metagenome, researchers from the Univ... Read More

An Immune Response in a Test Tube

A molecule best known for fighting off cellular clutter is now recognized as an important defender against another cellular threat: viruses. New research from HHMI investigator Zhijian Chen shows that ubiquitin, which helps cells identify unwanted proteins so that they can be removed, is also a ... Read More

Switch That Enables Salmonella to Sabotage Host Cells Revealed

A new switch that enables Salmonella bacteria to sabotage host cells is revealed in a study published in the journal Science.

The researchers behind the study, from Imperial College London, say that the new finding could ultimately lead to drugs that interfere with the switch in order to comb... Read More

NewGen Wastewater Treatment Technology in a Very Small Footprint

Feeding, protecting, and sheltering microbes is the approach of EKO GEA, a Slovenian bio-tech company with a breakthrough technology for its low-cost, fast wastewater treatment plant which also produces biogas. The various microbes that perform effective anaerobic digestion of waste are compact... Read More

Vaccine Stops Tumor Spread in Mice

A new study in mice suggests that a transcription factor normally found in male germ cells could become a target for cancer vaccines.

A transcription factor is a protein that controls the transfer (or transcription) of genetic material from the DNA to messenger RNA. This particular factor, kn... Read More

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