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Protein proves to be vital in immune response to bacteria

A team of researchers led by scientists at Rockefeller University have discovered that a protein once thought to be mainly involved in antiviral immunity is in fact more important in fighting bacterial infections and could provide new mechanisms for treating diseases like tuberculosis, which is ... Read More

Innate immune system protein provides a new target in war against bacterial infections

Research led by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital scientists has identified a possible new approach to defeating bacterial infections by targeting an innate immune system component in a bid to invigorate the immune response.

In this study, researchers demonstrated that the primary functio... Read More

Scientists reveal how natural systems limit the spread of "cheating" bacteria

In the first field study of its kind researchers at Royal Holloway, University of London and the University of Oxford have investigated the competitive dynamics of pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains of bacteria.

Bacteria are increasingly seen as living and interacting in groups and sharing... Read More

Fourth of July: American Presidents and Infectious Diseases

Happy Fourth of July! In honor of this historic holiday we’ve compiled a list showing how infectious diseases and vaccines have affected the lives of our most heralded leaders – the American presidents. These concise accounts are evidence that diseases can strike anyone, anywhere at any time, an... Read More

Parasite of the Day: Xenopsylla ramesis

There is no parasite that is universally infective, even generalist parasites that can infect many different host species are usually limited to a particular taxonomic group - such as fish, insects, or mammals. Some parasites may infect a broad spectrum of hosts during one stage of their life-cy... Read More

Superbug infections dropping across US, army finds

Bloodstream infections caused by the MRSA superbug may be on the decline in communities across the U.S., according to a large study of military personnel.

Previous data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show a drop in infections contracted in healthcare settings. But the tra... Read More

Lessons from the ASM meeting (#ASM2012)

Some lessons and notes from the ASM meeting from Jonathan Eisen on "The Tree of Life" Read More

What a sound idea

At first glance it appears to be a minuscule marble spinning around its vertical axis. Look closer, however, and you see a stationary spherical membrane of fluid, just 3 microns across. It is the stuff inside the droplet that is rotating. This self-contained centrifuge has been created by blasti... Read More

Time in space may stretch worm lifespan

Scientists studying loss of bone and muscle mass among astronauts find that spaceflight’s effects on microscopic worms may help them live longer.

The researchers discovered that spaceflight suppresses accumulation of toxic proteins that normally accumulate within aging muscle.

In addition,... Read More

Bacteria study of male adolescents reveals new insights into urinary tract health

The first study using cultivation independent sequencing of the microorganisms in the adolescent male urinary tract has revealed that the composition of microbial communities colonizing the penis in young men depends upon their circumcision status and patterns of sexual activity.

This study, ... Read More

Inspired by nature: Paints and coatings containing bactericidal agent nanoparticles combat marine fouling

Scientists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in Germany have discovered that tiny vanadium pentoxide nanoparticles can inhibit the growth of barnacles, bacteria, and algae on surfaces in contact with water, such as ship hulls, sea buoys, or offshore platforms. Their experiments showed... Read More

Searching for an Ancient Syphilis DNA in Newborns

Ancient DNA of the bacteria causing syphilis, the Treponema pallidum pallidum, can be recovered from the ancient bones of newborns. This is the conclusion reached by a study led by Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), which was able to obtain the genetic material from the bacteria in more th... Read More

The Dog Bacteria That Can Protect You From Asthma

Studies suggest that infants who grow up with dogs in their home are less likely to develop asthma. Researchers may now have found one reason why. Pets, dogs in particular, may protect infants from the effects of a common virus, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Infants with severe RSV infec... Read More

BESC researchers tap into genetic reservoir of heat-loving bacteria

The identification of key proteins in a group of heat-loving bacteria by researchers at the Department of Energy's BioEnergy Science Center could help light a fire under next-generation biofuel production.

Scientists have long been on the hunt for cost-effective ways to break down complex pla... Read More

Oddly Microbial: 86 Million Year-Old Deep Seabed Mystery Cells

Life in a high-pressured environment with practically nothing to eat might be ok for high-fashion models, but it’s an unlikely lifestyle choice for a single cell whose usual overriding goal is to become two cells. Yet the largest living ecosystem on Earth—the deep biosphere—is comprised of micro... Read More

Bacteria a potential threat to nuclear waste repositories

By interacting with the radioactive waste and the materials used to contain it, underground microorganisms may affect the safety of nuclear waste repositories, for better or for worse.

Underground, time appears to stand still. That is one of the reasons why deep geological formations are cons... Read More

Thoughts on the Inaugural Conference on the Microbiology of the Built Environment

". . . a guest post [to microbe.net] by David Thaler, who is one of the Sloan-funded investigators working on the microbiology of the built environment . . ."

"A few thoughts after the Inaugural meeting of Microbiology of the Built Environment Boulder.

My own opinions on these points are s... Read More

TWiV 186 Letters

Kurt writes:


Dear Vincent,


Sorry I missed your visit to NU- my teaching duties in Evanston prevented it!


Several of my students attended both and had good reports all around. Your work on ISGs sounds like it is coming along well.


I just today l... Read More

TWiV 190: The second ferret of the Apocalypse

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Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Alan Dove, and Read More

TWiV 185: Dead parrots and live Wildcats

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Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Sarah Connolly, Andrew Karaba, Read More

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