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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

Mundo de los Microbios - Episodio 10

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Vegetales que vacunan
Se está probando un nuevo método para suministrar vacunas: introducirlas en vegetales genéticamente modificados para que estos puedan ser utiliz... Read More

Are you more science-savvy than the average American?

Here's a quick and fun 12 question science quiz. Click on the "source" link above and see how you stack up against the American public according to a study released by the Pew Research Center.

Once completed you can also view the full report which states amongst other interesting findings th... Read More

Genome wager between Lewis Wolpert and Rupert Sheldrake

"Professor Lewis Wolpert and Dr Rupert Sheldrake, have set up a wager on the predictive value of the genome. Professor Wolpert believes that all biological phenomena can in principle be explained in terms of DNA, proteins and other molecules, together with their interactions. He is convinced tha... Read More

Is Obesity An Oral Bacterial Disease?

Obesity is definitely an epidemic in our society, even around the world. Scientists at The Forsyth Institute have discovered a link between certain oral bacteria and obesity. I can't imagine that it's the entire explanation for overweight people, but there could definitely be some causality. Wha... Read More

How stop (or at least control) blogging at scientific meetings

An editorial published in Nature 460, 152 (9 July 2009) entitled "How to Stop Blogging" considers how to handle attendees who blog presentations of research for public view and the policy options meeting conveners are exploring.

Despite the title of the editorial, in the body of the piece is ... Read More

Researchers show how the chemotaxis network of signaling proteins in E.coli is able to spontaneously form from clusters of proteins

"Self-assembling and self-organizing systems are the Holy Grails of nanotechnology, but nature has been producing such systems for millions of years. A team of scientists has taken a unique look at how thousands of bacterial membrane proteins are able to assemble into clusters that direct cell m... Read More

A new genetically engineered strain of corn developed for ethanol production

Corn Amylase is a genetically modified crop developed by the Swiss firm Syngenta Seeds that was developed specifically for the production of ethanol. The seed itself has been modified with a heat-resistant protein from deep-sea bacteria to produce a kernel easily converted to ethanol without add... Read More

Swine flu summit: Govt checks on state readiness

So the government anticipates a big problem with swine flu as the traditional fall flu season rolls around... Time for a checkup -- for local health officials. Read More

President Obama Announces Intent to Nominate Francis Collins as NIH Director

"WASHINGTON – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate Francis S. Collins as Director of the National Institutes of Health at the Department of Health and Human Services.

President Obama said, "The National Institutes of Health stands as a model when it comes to science ... Read More

Rodents may not be the primordial reservoirs for hantaviruses

New research from PLoS on novel hantavirus genomes in moles challenges the current thinking that rodents are the originating hosts for the disease.

From the abstract:

The discovery of genetically distinct hantaviruses in shrews (Order Soricomorpha, Family Soricidae) from widely separated ... Read More

Human Sperm Created From Embryonic Stem Cells

Researchers have developed a process for producing human sperm from stem cells. While both exciting and frightening at the same time, what does this mean for the future?

The research is being touted as a breakthrough in how we study and diagnose problems such as infertility and the effects t... Read More

Slime molds and the future of artificial intelligence

Justin Mullins, a consultant editor, for The New Scientist has published a very interesting read that ties research by Japanese scientists on the "cognitive" abilities of the slime mold Physarum polycephalum to memristors, "a class of passive two-terminal circuit elements that maintain a functio... Read More

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