For hospital workers an outbreak of harmful bacteria in the wards is a nightmare, but what gives bacteria nightmares?
Perhaps the prospect of being eaten alive by a kind of viral parasite called a bacteriophage (bacteria eater): unlike antibiotics, which some bacteria have evolved a resistanc... Read More
A former student dropped by my lab this morning, and brought me a gift: a knit bacteriophage! Many times, as educators, we hear what we haven't done well, or could do better. Sometimes, like today, we get a priceless "thank you" from a former student. Read More
A probiotic that prevents obesity could be on the horizon.
Bacteria that produce a therapeutic compound in the gut inhibit weight gain, insulin resistance and other adverse effects of a high-fat diet in mice, Vanderbilt University investigators have discovered.
“Of course it’s hard to spec... Read More
Hello TWiM team,
A new combination drug therapy cures chronic hepatitis C in most patients also infected with HIV—and without the side effects of current treatments.
The advance is important, researchers say, because about a third of HIV patients in the United States also have hepatitis C. There are an estima... Read More
Microbiota buffs repeat it often these days, proudly reminding the public that the microbial cells associated with humans outnumber their host cells by a ratio of ten-to-one. In his letter in the February 2014 Microbe, however, Judah L. Rosner of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) makes a s... Read More
A UAB research concludes that the Streptococcus mutans, one of the principal bacteria causing dental caries, has increased the changes in its genetic material over time, possibly coinciding with dietary changes linked to the expansion of humanity.
Click "source" to read more. Read More
The Human Microbiome Project (HMP) is a global initiative to identify and characterize the microorganisms present at multiple sites in the human body. An international team of researchers reports on new ways to harness the results of the HMP and discusses how changes in the microbiome might affe... Read More
A report in Biology Letters shows that the drool of herbivores might help defeat the toxic fungal defences of the plants they graze on.
Grazing or cutting some plants induces a noxious chemical to be produced which deters hungry plant-eaters from revisiting them. The chemicals, called alkaloi... Read More
The drought that has the entire country in its grip is affecting more than the color of people’s lawns. It may also be responsible for the proliferation of a heat-loving amoeba commonly found in warm freshwater bodies, such as lakes, rivers and hot springs, which the drought has made warmer than... Read More
Cancer has left its 'footprint' on our evolution, according to a study which examined how the relics of ancient viruses are preserved in the genomes of 38 mammal species.
Viral relics are evidence of the ancient battles our genes have fought against infection. Occasionally the retroviruses th... Read More
This episode: Algae-killing bacteria could help improve biofuel recovery processes!
(11 MB, 12 minutes)
Could a fist bump be a cleaner, better way for people to greet each other, especially in germy hospitals? British researchers have done an experiment that seems to say yes.
They tested just how many bacteria are transferred hand to hand during a handshake, a high-five and a fist bump. Handsha... Read More
The TWiVome discusses an miRNA based strategy to mitigate risk of gain of function studies, and identification of a second receptor required for Lassa virus entry.
SDSU virologists and biologists have identified a highly abundant, never-before-described virus that could play a major role in obesity, diabetes.
Odds are, there’s a virus living inside your gut that has gone undetected by scientists for decades. A new study led by researchers at San Diego S... Read More
A new study suggests that Saharan dust played a major role in the formation of the Bahamas islands. Researchers from the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science showed that iron-rich Saharan dust provides the nutrients necessary for specialized bacteria to pr... Read More
Using a new technique to track the swimming motion of a single bacterium, researchers have discovered that the movement of the bacterium’s body — not just thrust from the flagellum — allow movement through fluids. The finding could shed new light on the evolution of cell body shape.
Click "so... Read More
Aaron Wheeler is the director of an interdisciplinary research group at the University of Toronto in Canada. The group develop lab-on-a-chip techniques for applications in biology, chemistry and medicine.
You recently reported an exciting technique that can screen algae grown under different ... Read More
HIV-1, the most common type of the virus that causes AIDS, has proved to be tenacious, inserting its genome permanently into its victims' DNA, forcing patients to take a lifelong drug regimen to control the virus and prevent a fresh attack. Now, a team of researchers has designed a way to snip o... Read More