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How gaming technology could stop the spread of Ebola

The room is framed by a small square of transparent plastic, clamped to each of my cheeks and secured with a strap around my forehead. My breathing, growing ever more laboured, sounds like an astronaut’s; the erratic inhale and exhale of someone short on oxygen and trying not to panic. A paper m... Read More

Ebola: How does it compare?

Since the first case, a two-year-old who passed away on 28 December 2013, there have been more than 6,900 deaths.

Outbreaks such as Ebola have an ability to spread fear around the world, often through the prism of sensationalist media reporting.

So how does Ebola actually compare to previo... Read More

Where does Ebola come from?

The hollow Cola tree growing in a remote area of southeastern Guinea was once home to thousands of bats routinely hunted and killed by the neighborhood children. It was also a popular spot to play. A year ago, one child in particular lived within fifty meters of the tree: a two-year-old boy who ... Read More

Scientists discover bacteria that survives solely by eating electricity

Researchers at Harvard and Yale have used some extreme gene-manipulation tools to engineer safety features into designer organisms.

This work goes far beyond traditional genetic engineering, which involves moving a gene from one organism to another. In this case, they're actually rewriting th... Read More

Lyme disease enhances spread of emerging tick infection

Mice that are already infected with the pathogen that causes Lyme disease appear to facilitate the spread of a lesser-known but emerging disease, babesiosis, into new areas.

Research led by the Yale School of Public Health and published Dec. 29 in the journal PLOS ONEused laboratory experimen... Read More

Highly targeted immune response achieved with new class of synthetic molecules that mimic antibodies

A Yale University lab has crafted the first synthetic molecules that have both the targeting and response functions of antibodies.

The new molecules -- synthetic antibody mimics (SyAMs) -- attach themselves simultaneously to disease cells and disease-fighting cells. The result is a highly tar... Read More

Harnessing bacteria to move microscopic gears and ratchets

Previous research has already demonstrated that substantial quantities of self-motile or active agents such as bacteria in a fluid environment can be harnessed to do mechanical work like moving microscopic gears and ratchets. Bacteria as well as algae can also be used to transport or displace ma... Read More

Can we conquer infectious disease? (video)

Soon, we'll have smarter, more effective vaccines. What does that mean for the future of disease?
Read More

TWiP 81 letters


Allan writes:


Dear Vincent & Dickson… and Daniel,


I always enjoy listening to TWIP here in Kona, Hawaii.


Our weather today is 79ºF and clear but we have just experienced a record 25-year overnight low of 54ºF,
(FREEZING, as few of us hav... Read More

Microbes protect vultures from their toxic diet

Vultures relish rotting meat but how do they survive the deadly bugs that infest their food? It seems they opt for the probiotic approach, enlisting good bacteria to ward off the bad, microbiologists at Aarhus University in Denmark discovered in a study published in Nature Communications.

The... Read More

Molecules seen binding to HIV-1's protective capsule, blocking infection

New research shows an HIV-1 inhibitor and a host protein binding to HIV-1's protective capsule, preventing it from disassembling. Viral genetic information is kept inside. Researchers believe the process can be targeted for therapeutic purposes in HIV-1 infections. Read More

New Study Underscores Importance of Accurate CF-Related Microbiological Diagnostic Procedures

A new study entitled “Microbiological diagnostic procedures for respiratory cystic fibrosis samples in Spain: towards standard of care practices” was published in BMC Microbiology by Juan de Dios Caballero and a group of researchers from Spain. In this study, the authors evaluated the compliance... Read More

Global Microbiology Testing/Clinical Microbiology (Instrument, Analyzer, Incubator, Kit, Microscope, Molecular Diagnostics) Market - Forecast to 2019

Clinical microbiology consists of a wide array of techniques for the detection of infectious diseases. The respiratory diseases segment accounted for the largest application segment of the clinical microbiology market in 2014. According to the WHO, in 2012, there were about 450,000 new cases of ... Read More

Test developed by UAB scientists could help fight deadly infection

Researchers from UAB have developed a tool for diagnosing bacterial meningitis that uses the same technology as a home pregnancy test.

The test measures the level of certain proteins that are present in the spinal fluid of patients with bacterial meningitis. If the level is high, the test wil... Read More

Satellites - the viral kind

Satellites are subviral agents that differ from viroids because they depend on the presence of a helper virus for their propagation. Satellite viruses are particles that contain nucleic acid genomes encoding a structural protein that encapsidates the satellite genome. Satellite RNAs do not encod... Read More

Ebola Patient Is Moved to London, and 2 Others Are Tested in Britain

A health worker who returned from West Africa and was found to have Ebola when she arrived home in Scotland was transferred on Tuesday to Britain’s designated treatment center for the disease in London.

The authorities also reported that two more people were being tested for the virus.

The... Read More

Five intriguing facts about viruses that cause measles, Ebola and other scourges

Viruses are incredibly simple, arguably the most simple living organisms on the planet. They have no brains, no metabolism, and they can’t reproduce on their own. Yet they are able to wreak incredible havoc on our bodies and to outwit the scientifically advanced weapons that humans have invente... Read More

Deadly bacteria on medical scopes trigger infections

The deadly pattern of illnesses began to emerge in 2012 at hospitals in Seattle, Pittsburgh, Chicago. In each case, the culprit was a bacteria known as CRE, perhaps the most feared of superbugs, because it resists even "last defense" antibiotics — and kills up to 40% of the people it infects.

... Read More

The Real Contagion of Anti-Vaccine Idiocy

Quinn Cummings is a writer of three books, Notes From the Underwire, The Year of Learning Dangerously and Pet Sounds.

When a 'personal choice' becomes a health crisis

I glanced at my phone and frowned — why on earth was my daughter’s pediatrician calling me at seven at night?

Without pr... Read More

Trust your gut: E. coli may hold one of the keys to treating Parkinson's

E. coli usually brings to mind food poisoning and beach closures, but researchers recently discovered a protein in E. coli that inhibits the accumulation of potentially toxic amyloids—a hallmark of diseases such as Parkinson's.

Amyloids are formed by proteins that misfold and group together, ... Read More
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