Highlights of the Recent Advances in Microbial Control meeting in San Diego, and expansion of a gut pathogen by virulence factors that stimulate aerobic respiration.
Today it is well known that viruses may contain DNA (poxvirus, mimivirus) or RNA (influenza virus, Zika virus), but for many years it was thought that genomes were only made of DNA. The surprise at finding only RNA in a virus is plainly evident in a 1953 letter from Harriett Ephrussi-Taylor to J... Read More
Nels and Vincent launch a new podcast on evolution, This Week in Evolution (TWiEVO) and start by discussing how the field has changed through recent mergers of evolutionary and experimental biology in the post-genome era. Read More
Host: Jeff Fox with special guests, Gemma Reguera and Geoffrey Gadd.
Gemma Reguera of Michigan State University in East Lansing and Geoffrey Gadd of the University of Dundee in Scotland talk with Jeff Fox about their efforts, to probe some of the electrical properties of materials pro... Read More
Data from several clinical studies in Brazil establish a strong link between infection of pregnant women with Zika virus and a variety of birth defects collectively called congenital Zika syndrome.
In the latest study conducted in Rio de Janeiro, the authors enrolled 88 pregnant women who had... Read More
Not long after the appearance of an outbreak of viral disease, first scientists, and then newswriters, blame it all on mutation of the virus. It happened during the Ebolavirus outbreak in West Africa, and now it’s happening with Zika virus.
The latest example is by parasitologist Peter Hotez,... Read More
Researchers have extracted the oldest complete genome sequence of a pathogen yet, from the body of the 5,300-year-old ice mummy Ötzi.
According to a January 7 paper in Science, the ‘Iceman’ was infected with the bacteriumHelicobacter pylori, which also plagues modern humans.
Few corpses h... Read More
While our human biochemical reactions are limited, our ingenuity is not, and scientists are able to exploit microbes for our benefit, such as in chemical spills. Using microbes to degrade or sequester toxic molecules is one form of bioremediation, and has many various applications. Famously, sci... Read More
The Zika virus infects a type of neural stem cell that gives rise to the brain's cerebral cortex, Johns Hopkins and Florida State researchers report March 4 in Cell Stem Cell. On laboratory dishes, these stem cells were found to be havens for viral reproduction, resulting in cell death and/or di... Read More
Since the first outbreak of Ebola virus in 1976, the frequency and scale of the deadly disease’s outbreaks have increased. The 2014-2015 outbreak in West Africa caused 11,000 deaths, precipitated panic at airports and emergency rooms worldwide, and renewed the urgency to find cures.
Kartik ... Read More
One of the important tasks of Public Health England’s Mycology Reference Laboratory is to identify any newly emerging fungal pathogens that could become a public health risk. In recent months, the lab had tracked several clusters of Candida auris infections in British hospitals. The multidrug-re... Read More
Rochester, Minn. -- Mayo Clinic researchers, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and health officials from Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin, have discovered a new bacterial species that causes Lyme disease in people. The new species has been provisiona... Read More
The TWiXers discuss a study on vertical transmission of Zika virus by Aedes mosquitoes, and uncovering Earth's virome by mining existing metagenomic sequence data.
Despite increasing awareness of Klebsiella pneumoniae as a public health risk, there has been relatively little understood about its mechanisms of pathogenesis.
The bacterium, estimated to be the third most common cause of hospital-acquired infections in the United States in a recent study, c... Read More
This past weekend, I went to visit a friend and meet his twin toddler boys for the first time. Though both boys eagerly ran around the playground we visited, one was just slightly less active. “He has asthma,” his dad explained to me, “but his brother doesn’t.” Why would two boys with the same e... Read More
For the first time, US disease experts have agreed that the mosquito-borne Zika virus does indeed cause babies to be born with abnormally small heads — a condition known as microcephaly. Until now, the two conditions were linked — but experts didn’t know for sure if Zika caused the brain-damaged... Read More
Gruesome, ghastly, grisly. These are the words that popped into my head when I googled images of diabetic foot ulcers—one of the most common chronic wounds creating a silent and costly epidemic in healthcare.
Perhaps even more shocking is the mortality rate connected to these open wounds, wh... Read More
The TWiPtoids solve the case of the Thai Fisherman with Chronic Diarrhea, and reveal a potential new drug for treatment of leishmaniasis, Chagas diseases, and sleeping sickness.
New research to be published January 13 in the journal Scientific Reports shows that some bacterial cultures adopt an all-for-one/one-for-all strategy that would make a socialist proud in preparing for the possibility of an antibiotic onslaught. Read More