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Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys has swine flu

The Backstreet Boys are releasing a new album today, but they won't be promoting it much this week. Brian Littrell has the swine flu.

The group have called off this morning's performance on the "CBS Early Show" and a number of events in New York to support their new album, "This is Us." Read More

First Direct Information About Prion's Molecular Structure Reported

A collaboration between scientists at Vanderbilt University and the University of California, San Francisco has led to the first direct information about the molecular structure of prions. In addition, the study has revealed surprisingly large structural differences between natural prions and th... Read More

How cracked heels can let killer bacteria invade your body

One night as Chris Banting was undressing for bed, he was surprised when his wife Helen pointed out to him that the back of his right calf was a worrying scarlet colour.

'It was strange because I wasn't in any discomfort at all,' says Chris, 62.

'If you have an infection, you think you'd b... Read More

Chemical from Soil Bacteria Shows Potential Neuron Toxicity; Has Possible Parkinson's Implications

A chemical produced by common soil bacteria may kill neurons that produce dopamine, according to an article authored by University of Alabama researchers publishing Oct. 6. Dopamine neuron demise leads to the hallmark symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, a movement disorder affecting some 1 million ... Read More

The Dollars and Sense of Closing Schools for H1N1

Editor's note - this is an interesting look at the economics behind the seemingly easy decision to close a school for the flu:

Much has been made of the potential difficulties businesses face if numerous employees are out sick with the H1N1 "swine" flu. But there has been little information o... Read More

Light Shed On The Secret Behind Probiotic Bacteria Promoting Health

Functional food is the food industry’s fastest-growing product group, its leading products including dairy products which contain probiotics, that is, bacteria promoting health. Valio’s Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG®) is the most frequently studied and used probiotic.

Under the supervision ... Read More

All for one, and one for all! Symbiosis in a warming world

In what appears to be a warming world, understanding how plants can tolerate and prosper at elevated temperatures is an intriguing topic. Small Things Considered's Associate Blogger Mark O. Martin looks at the symbiosis between panic grass, a virus, an endophytic fungus, and elevated temperature... Read More

Swine flu vaccine arriving, but don't line up yet

And we're off: Swine flu vaccinations begin Monday with squirts in the noses scheduled for some doctors, nurses and other health workers in Indiana and Tennessee, a first step in a hugely ambitious campaign to try to inoculate over half the population in a few months. But don't start bugging you... Read More

Seven New Luminescent Mushroom Species Discovered

Seven new glow-in-the-dark mushroom species have been discovered, increasing the number of known luminescent fungi species from 64 to 71. Reported in the journal Mycologia, the new finds include two new species named after movements in Mozart's Requiem. The discoveries also shed light on the evo... Read More

Dr. Satyajit Rath of India's National Institute of Immunology discusses the AIDS vaccine trial in Thailand and its success.

Dr. Satyajit Rath of India's National Institute of Immunology discusses the recent AIDS vaccine trial being conducted in Thailand and its success. Via Newsclick.in Read More

Don’t Smother Labs, Panel Says

A panel of university and private-sector scientists urged Congress not to overregulate laboratories that handle deadly pathogens, saying it could have a chilling effect on research. In a 161-page report, a committee of the National Research Council says the best protection against deliberate mis... Read More

Chicago family seeks answers in Malcolm Casadaban's death by plague

ABC News video on the late Malcom Casadaban, a University of Chicago researcher who passed away after exposure to Yersinia pestis.

"The tragic irony is that Professor Casadaban had been trying to develop a vaccine so that thousands of people around the world wouldn't die a painful, ugly death... Read More

Understanding A Cell's Split Personality Aids Synthetic Circuits

As scientists work toward making genetically altered bacteria create living "circuits" to produce a myriad of useful proteins and chemicals, they have logically assumed that the single-celled organisms would always respond to an external command in the same way.

Alas, some bacteria apparently... Read More

Fish-Killing Toxin Could Kill Cancer Cells

A powerful fish-killing toxin could have cancer-killing properties as well, according to collaborative research led by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) microbiologist Paul V. Zimba and chemist Peter Moeller of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The toxin, called ... Read More

E. Coli Path Shows Flaws in Beef Inspection

Stephanie Smith, a children’s dance instructor, thought she had a stomach virus. The aches and cramping were tolerable that first day, and she finished her classes.

Then her diarrhea turned bloody. Her kidneys shut down. Seizures knocked her unconscious. The convulsions grew so relentless tha... Read More

Humans as Host

The exact number of bacteria living in or on humans isn't known, though it is estimated to be around a trillion. In any case, the number of microbial cells in the human body outnumbers the human ones by a factor of 10. Those symbiotic microbes endow humans with otherwise unattainable metabolic c... Read More

BHU scientists isolate coal-degrading bacteria

In a major scientific breakthrough, scientists of the School of Biotechnology, Banaras Hindu University, have isolated a group of
bacteria that degrades lignite coal (low energy producing coal) to produce methane gas for increased fuel efficiency.

While the isolation of the special group of... Read More

3 Americans share 2009 Nobel medicine prize

Americans Elizabeth H. Blackburn, Carol W. Greider and Jack W. Szostak won the 2009 Nobel Prize in medicine on Monday for discovering a key mechanism in the genetic operations of cells, an insight that has inspired new lines of research into cancer.

It was the first time two women have been a... Read More

Nanotechnology sensor detects living bacteria at ultralow concentrations

A pathogen is a an organism (bacterium, virus, parasite) that causes disease in another organism. According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), known pathogens account for an estimated 14 million illnesses, 60,000 hospitalizations, and 1,800 deaths each year i... Read More

A Better Way To Watch Bacteria Swim

Researchers have developed a new method for studying bacterial swimming, one that allows them to trap Escherichia coli bacteria and modify the microbes' environment without hindering the way they move.

The new approach, described this month in Nature Methods, uses optical traps, microfluidic ... Read More
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