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The Government's Shut Down, the Flu Virus Isn't

Two weeks into the government shutdown, flu season is about to ramp up. And without full-scale infectious-disease surveillance by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, experts said, health consequences for the nation could range from unsettling to disastrous.

Normally, the CDC monit... Read More

Lather Up for Global Handwashing Day

Every day of the year, it seems, is a special day devoted to some aspect of our lives. The most obvious are Christmas, Valentine's Day, Easter and of course, Canada Day. But there are a number of lesser known days that mark a special part of our human existence. In October alone, there are days ... Read More

Pandoravirus: Missing Link Discovered Between Viruses and Cells

With the discovery of Mimivirus ten years ago and, more recently, Megavirus chilensis[1], researchers thought they had reached the farthest corners of the viral world in terms of size and genetic complexity. With a diameter in the region of a micrometer and a genome incorporating more than 1,100... Read More

Clashes over China's prized caterpillar fungus

Looking like a small brown twig on the end of a crinkled yellow worm, the caterpillar fungus is for its believers a lifesaver, a cure for cancer and a potent aphrodisiac sometimes known as "Himalayan Viagra".

In a dirty, dimly-lit room in a backstreet of one of China's poorest rural towns, a ... Read More

Vesiculation: Another Bacterial Skill

Microbiology, we will agree, is a vast subject where many important aspects are likely to evade one’s sight. Here’s an example—the formation of vesicles from the outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria. This phenomenon, known as vesiculation, is widespread and noteworthy for enhancing our under... Read More

A bacterium reveals the crucible of its metallurgical activity

An international consortium led by CEA researchers in collaboration with the CNRS, has succeeded in characterizing the structure and function of a protein involved in the production of magnetite nanomagnets in magnetotactic bacteria. This protein, MamP, is crucial to the metallurgical activity o... Read More

New botox super-toxin has its details censored

A new type of botulinum toxin – the deadliest substance known – has been discovered. Because it does not yet have an antidote, the DNA sequence behind it has been withheld from public databases. This is the first time a sequence has been kept secret over security concerns.

Injecting a mere 2 ... Read More

Printable Biotechnology

Cells, biological circuits, and individual biomolecules organize themselves and interact with the environment. Use of these capabilities in flexible and economically efficient biotechnological production systems is in the focus of the "Molecular Interaction Engineering" (MIE) project. It is the ... Read More

Under the Microscope and the new science blog network by PopSci

Popular Science has just launched a new science blogging network with 13 blogs. Among them are two that have a focus on microbiology, Under the Microscope by JA Tetro and Our Modern Plague by Brooke Borel. Each blog has an inaugural post that outlines the author's vision for future subject matte... Read More

Malaria vaccines: The long war

On October 8th researchers announced progress in developing a vaccine against malaria. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), a British pharmaceutical firm, said it would seek regulatory approval next year for this vaccine, called RTS,S. GSK and its charitable partner, the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative, also ... Read More

No Viral Cause for Breast Cancer and Brain Tumors

A major study conducted at the Sahlgrenska Academy has now disproved theories of a viral cause for breast cancer and the brain tumour, glioblastoma. The study, which was based on over seven billion DNA sequences and which is published in Nature Communications, found no genetic traces of viruses ... Read More

No cases of MERS virus among haj pilgrims so far: ministry

Saudi Arabia has so far recorded no cases of the deadly MERS coronavirus among pilgrims in the holy city of Mecca for the annual haj season, the Ministry of Health said on Saturday.

The death toll from the respiratory virus in the kingdom, where the strain emerged last year, has reached 51, a... Read More

Human Microbiome May Be Seeded Before Birth

We are each home to about 100 trillion bacteria, which we carry with us from birth till death. But when Juliette C. Madan was trained as a neonatologist in the mid-2000s, her teachers told her in no uncertain terms that we only acquire those bacteria after we are born. “It was clear as day, we w... Read More

What Is Vibrio Vulnificus? Flesh-Eating Salt Water Bacteria Infects 31 In Florida

Florida health officials are encouraging the state’s residents not to be alarmed following another death from the flesh-eating bacteria Vibrio vulnificus. The rare bacteria that thrives in saltwater has killed 10 people in Florida this year, while 31 people in all have been infected with the ... Read More

Colder Than Ice: Researchers Discover How Microbes Survive in Subfreezing Conditions

Most microbial researchers grow their microbes in petri-dishes to study how they grow and how they respond to damaging conditions. But researchers in Louisiana State University’s Department of Biological Sciences are doing something almost unheard of: studying microbes under freezing conditions ... Read More

Third Tampa Bay Buccaneers Player Contracts MRSA

A third player on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers football team has been diagnosed with an infection of the highly antibiotic-resistant bacteria known as MRSA, team officials said today.

The third infected player was not identified, but two teammates, Carl Nicks and Lawrence Tynes, were diagnosed in... Read More

Creating a permanent bacteria barrier

Any medical device implanted in the body attracts bacteria, proteins, and other microbes to its surface, causing infections and thrombosis (blood clotting) that lead to hundreds of thousands of deaths annually. Devices can be coated with antibiotics, blood thinners, and other agents — but these ... Read More

How bacteria in your gut affect your mental health

Scientists searching for the underlying causes of mental illness have discovered a surprising contributor — it appears the bacteria that live in your gut may play a major role in your mental health and well-being.

CBC Radio science columnist Torah Kachur spoke to researchers such as Karen Mad... Read More

Badgers ultimately responsible for around half of TB in cattle, study estimates

Badgers are ultimately responsible for roughly half of tuberculosis (TB) in cattle in areas with high TB prevalence, according to new estimates.

However, only around six per cent of infected cattle catch TB from badgers, with onward transmission between cattle herds accounting for the remaind... Read More

Could Brain-Eating Amoeba Invade Your Faucet?

Following the September death of a young boy in St. Bernard Parish, La. from a brain-eating amoeba found in household water, state officials have confirmed the same amoeba has been found in a northern Louisiana parish's water. The amoeba, called Naegleria fowleri, which proves deadly if water is... Read More

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