A deadly outbreak of E. coli has been traced to a large producer of ground beef that stopped testing its ingredients years ago under pressure from beef suppliers.The outbreak has fueled a growing concern among grocers that not enough is being done to protect their customers.
The United State... Read More
Stinking lagoons of pig poo created by thousands of animals in giant pig farms can pollute rivers, poison groundwater and pump out clouds of methane and carbon dioxide. Using microorganisms to break down slurry makes sense for two reasons. The first is environmental protection, but the methane p... Read More
A new study is linking cumulative exposure to five common pathogens with an increased risk for stroke. The infections in order of significance are Chlamydia pneumoniae, Helicobacter pylori, cytomegalovirus and herpes simplex viruses 1 and 2. Read More
The AIDS virus inserts its genetic material into the genome of the infected cell. Scientists of the German Cancer Research Center have now shown for the first time that the virus almost entirely spares particular sites in the human genetic material in this process. This finding may be useful for... Read More
In an advance that could help ease health and environmental concerns about the emerging nanotechnology industry, scientists are reporting development of technology for changing the behavior of nanoparticles in municipal sewage treatment plants -- their main gateway into the environment. Their st... Read More
Vincent and Dick provide an overview of parasites and parasitism.
Download TWiP #1 (41 MB .mp3, 57 minutes) Read More
A new form of biodegradable shipping material by a company called Ecovative is created by filling a reusable mold with agricultural waste like rice husks and is then sprayed with mushroom root cells. The cells eat the husks and grow to form a dense network that packs the mold. After baking, the ... Read More
Luciano Marabese, an Italian inventor has combined his Catholic faith and ingenuity to create the electronic terracotta holy water dispenser. It functions like an automatic soap dispenser in public lavatories - a churchgoer waves his or her hand under a sensor and the machine spurts out holy wat... Read More
Prodesse’s molecular diagnostic test for H1N1 swine flu infections has been cleared by EU regulators for commercialization in Europe.
The firm, which recently became a subsidiary of Gen-Probe, received the CE Mark clearance for its ProFlu-ST assay as a diagnostic to differentiate among influe... Read More
Government health officials say swine flu has sickened about 22 million Americans since April.
They say about 4,000 have died, including 540 children.
The startling new figures — about four times higher than previous death estimates — don’t mean swine flu has suddenly gotten worse. Instead... Read More
A virus that causes the common cold may be saving people from swine flu. If this intriguing idea turns out to be true, it would explain why swine flu's autumn wave has been slow to take off in some countries and point to new ways to fight flu.
"It is really surprising that there has not been ... Read More
"In an effort to stem a massive bee die-off, government scientists have developed a population of honeybees that can root out a main culprit in the epidemic -- a parasite that feeds on pupae in nests and spreads viruses within hives.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists hope the p... Read More
ED note - this is a very well thought-out piece from Nature that serves as a great overview of the H1N1 virus and pandemic.
As the world mobilizes against the H1N1 flu pandemic, researchers are working to answer pressing questions about the virus. Brendan Maher visited pathologists at the US... Read More
Which items have the most germs?
CBS News correspondent Kelly Wallace reported that scientists now say it's the things we use most that harbor the most germs, and the more germs, the more likely viruses are present.
Just where are these germ factories?
Dr. Charles Gerba -- also known as... Read More
A high-fat, high-sugar diet does more than pump calories into your body. It also alters the composition of bacteria in your intestines, making it easier to gain weight and harder to lose it, research in mice suggests. And the changeover can happen in as little as 24 hours, according to a report ... Read More
Deep under the ocean, there is a species of crab that eats trees.
The crab survives by eating wood that has sunk to the ocean floor, comprising trunks and leaves swept into the sea, as well as the odd shipwreck.
Inside the stomach of the crab, also called a squat lobster, are bacteria and ... Read More
Federal health officials now say that 4,000 or more Americans likely have died from swine flu — about four times the estimate they've been using.
The new, higher figure was first reported by The New York Times. It includes deaths caused by complications related to swine flu, including pneumon... Read More
Got food poisoning? The cause might be bacterial spores, en extremely hardy survival form of bacteria, a nightmare for health care and the food industry and an enigma for scientists. Spore-forming bacteria, present almost everywhere in our environment, can also cause serious infectious diseases,... Read More
Small Things Considered, a microbiology blog published by the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), has been honored with a non-profit public relations award from PR News for best blog. The awards were announced at a luncheon held in Washington, DC, on November 3, 2009.
“I feel honored an... Read More
Few farmers in this southern Chinese village gave much thought to the swine flu epidemic that had begun spreading rapidly in the United States early this summer until police sealed its 100 residents off from the outside world for about a week. It turned out that a visitor from California had sho... Read More