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Flu tackles Super Bowl fans

ITHACA, N.Y. - If you're a fan of the Panthers or Broncos, be sure to wash your hands on Super Bowl Sunday before you give a friend a celebratory fist bump.

A Cornell University economist and his colleagues have found the geographical areas that have an NFL team advance to the Super Bowl had ... Read More

2 THINGS WE NEED TO FIGHT ZIKA’S EXPLOSIVE SPREAD

A recent outbreak of Zika virus in Brazil is causing alarm throughout the Americas, with health officials warning that the disease is “spreading explosively.” The World Health Organization (WHO) held an emergency meeting to address the problem, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ... Read More

TWiM #120: Snakes in trouble

Hosts: Vincent Racaniello and Elio Schaechter.


Vincent and Elio marvel in the finding that a phage tail-like struc... Read More

A chromosome in every cell: PprA funcitons in chromosome segregation after Deinococcus radiodurans irradiation

Exposure to reactive oxygen species, exposure to ionizing radiation, exposure to UV light – all of these are dangerous because of their potential to alter DNA sequences. Changes in DNA can affect a protein coding sequence, potentially influencing its function, but changes in regulatory regions c... Read More

HITTING INFECTIONS HARD CAN BE ‘THE WORST THING TO DO’

The standard practice of treating infections with the highest tolerable dose of antibiotic medications may not always be best way of preventing the evolution of drug resistance, a new study suggests. Read More

Resistance to key HIV drug 'concerningly common'

HIV drug resistance to tenofovir, an antiretroviral drug vital to most modern HIV treatment and prevention strategies, is surprisingly and worryingly common according to a large study led by UCL (University College London) and funded by the Wellcome Trust. Read More

TWiV 374: Discordance in B

Hosts: Vincent RacanielloDickson DespommierAlan Dove Read More

Zika virus

The rapid spread of Zika virus through the Americas, together with the association of infection with microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome, have propelled this previously ignored virus into the limelight. What is this virus and where did it come from?
Read More

Insect growth regulator wears a second hat: Infection fighter

During an animal's embryonic development, a chemical chain reaction known as Hippo directs organs to grow to just the right size and no larger. Now Johns Hopkins researchers working with laboratory flies report that this signaling pathway also plays a role in revving up the insects' immune syste... Read More

ZIKA VIRUS ‘IS ABOUT AS SCARY AS IT GETS’

The Zika virus, unlike other mosquito-borne viruses such as dengue, has until now been relatively unknown and unstudied. Read More

A growing concern: why whooping cough incidence may be increasing in a highly vaccinated population

News headlines highlighting an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease often leave readers shaking their heads. These diseases – measles, chickenpox, whooping cough – could have been prevented if only the infected children had been vaccinated. Right? Well, in the case of whooping cough, the si... Read More

Microbiology, Cartoons, and Take Home Lessons!

In this blog post, I describe how I had students create their own cartoon depicting microbiological ideas and concepts that most tickled their fancy. I did this on their final exam, and the students came up with really interesting and entertaining ideas. IT's always interesting to see what stu... Read More

Natural Clay Deposit May Hold Keys to Defeating Hospital Infections

Washington, D.C.—January 26, 2016— Researchers have uncovered potent antimicrobial activity in a natural clay deposit found on the central coast of British Columbia, Canada. The research, published this week in mBio, an online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology, shows t... Read More

S. aureus Can Spread from Blood to Eye, Endangering Vision

Washington, DC - January 25, 2016 - Nearly ten percent of cases of Staphylococcus aureus infections of the blood spread to the eyeball, according to a team of Korean clinical investigators. That spread can severely impair vision, and even cause blindness. The research was published January 11 in... Read More

JAMA Viewpoint: Emerging Zika pandemic requires more WHO action now

WASHINGTON - The World Health Organization's Director-General should convene "urgently" a meeting of International Health Regulations' Emergency Committee to advise on the emerging Zika pandemic and galvanize global action, say two Georgetown University professors. Read More

New way to detect human-animal diseases tested in lemurs

DURHAM, N.C. -- Advances in genetic sequencing are uncovering emerging diseases in wildlife that other diagnostic tests can't detect. Read More

Ancient clay remedy proves its antibacterial powers in the lab

Near Kisameet Bay on the central coast of British Columbia sits a deposit of clay that covers 5 acres and spans a depth up to 42 feet in places. This vast smear formed 10,000 years ago as glacial melt filled a granite basin and fine minerals silted out.

The ancient clay likely holds secrets t... Read More

UK will need to act faster when inevitable next Ebola emerges

Ad hoc, uncoordinated and late. That’s how the UK government’s response to West Africa’s Ebola outbreak has been described in a report published on Monday by the House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee.

The report calls for changes to enable the UK to identify threats earlier... Read More

Did Zika’s recent mutations let it explode as a global threat?

Don’t get pregnant, at least for now. That is the chilling warning from governments battling the Zika pandemic, as evidence mounts that the mosquito-borne virus can cause severe birth defects.

As the scale of the impact starts to emerge, scientists are scrambling to learn more about the littl... Read More

Probiotics come with bold health claims, but the science is shaky

“Good bacteria,” or probiotics, are everywhere these days, in pills and powders marketed as super supplements. Probiotics are said to improve digestive and immune health. They’re touted as potential treatments for conditions ranging from inflammatory bowel disease to eczema to tooth decay. Some ... Read More
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