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First Fecal Transplant Bank Opens

OpenBiome, a company based in Cambridge, Mass., has opened a facility that collects stool samples from healthy, pre-screened individuals. It then processes those "donations" and readies them for shipment to hospitals, where they are put into the colons of people with the deadly gut infection Cl... Read More

New Spray Ends Ride for Microbes

When you peer through the smear on the screen of your smartphone, thousands of tiny microbes are staring back at you, waiting to hitch a ride on your fingertips.

Harmful microbes lurk everywhere — doorknobs and faucets, locker rooms and hospitals. It's enough to make a germophobe afraid to to... Read More

New childhood TB cases double earlier estimates

esearchers from Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and Harvard Medical School (HMS) have estimated that around 1 million children contract tuberculosis (TB) annually — twice the number previously thought to have the disease and three times the number of cases diagnosed every y... Read More

Bio-artist colors textiles with deadly bacteria and antibiotics

Would you cuddle up with a quilt stained with MRSA? Artist Anna Dumitriu challenges the relationship between humans and bacteria by staining textiles with superbugs.

As part of her artist's residency on the UK Clinical Research Consortium Project “Modernising Medical Microbiology” at the Univ... Read More

Global video challenge

Microbes are essential partners in all aspects of plant physiology, but human efforts to improve plant productivity have focused solely on the plant. Due to the change in environment the pathogenic microbesare growing rapidly whcich gives the negative impact that is diseases to human, animal and... Read More

Bacteria Enhance Growth of Fruit Trees Up to 40 Percent

Improvement in reforestation and agriculture is possible thanks to the work of scientists in the Center of Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) who use different strains of fungi and bacteria to promote development and health in trees, which have enabled them to accelerate growth of differe... Read More

Maize Plus Bacteria: One-Two Punch Knocks Copper Out of Stamp Sand

Scientists have known for years that together, bacteria and plants can remediate contaminated sites. Ramakrishna Wusirika, of Michigan Technological University, has determined that how you add bacteria to the mix can make a big difference. Wusirika has also shed light on the biochemical pathways... Read More

Better batteries through biology?

MIT researchers find a way to boost lithium-air battery performance, with the help of modified viruses.

Lithium-air batteries have become a hot research area in recent years: They hold the promise of drastically increasing power per battery weight, which could lead, for example, to electric c... Read More

A Newly Discovered Microbe Could Accelerate Global Warming

Teaming beneath Sweden's thawing permafrost is a previously undiscovered microbe known as methanongen (Candidatus Methanoflorens Stordalenmirensis). As its name suggests, the microbe does one thing really well: release methane into the atmosphere, presenting a feedback loop of gas production tha... Read More

Evidence-based antibiotic usage

New recommendation encourages physicians to prescribe _antibacterials_ instead of antibiotics for bacterial infections. This recommendation is based on compelling evidence that the word "antibiotic" confuses almost everyone, including some doctors. The confusion leads to strong patient demands... Read More

The bacteria in breast milk

Bacteria are found in large numbers all over the human body where there is a channel to the outside world, for example in the gut, lungs, and surface of the skin. I’ve always thought that actually inside the human body was a bacteria-free environment unless an infection was raging so I was very ... Read More

NASA To Test Microgravity’s Effect On Bacteria, Antibiotics

NASA’s Antibiotic Effectiveness in Space (AES-1) investigation is launching in January and it will be offering scientists more insight into how bacteria behave in microgravity.

Bacteria are considered the most successful life forms, and they are hard to run from, even in space. In a micrograv... Read More

3 germs are urgent threats to USA's health, CDC says

The overuse of antibiotics has caused three kinds of bacteria, including one that causes life-threatening diarrhea, one that causes bloodstream infections and one that transmits sexually, to become urgent threats to human health in the United States, federal health officials say in a landmark re... Read More

Neanderthal Viruses Found in Modern Humans

Ancient viruses from Neanderthals have been found in modern human DNA by researchers at Oxford University and Plymouth University.

The researchers compared genetic data from fossils of Neanderthals and another group of ancient human ancestors called Denisovans to data from modern-day cancer p... Read More

In Life, Man Immune To HIV Helped Scientists Fight Virus

Stephen Crohn, a man best known for staying alive during the early days of the AIDS epidemic, died Aug. 23 at age 66. Throughout his lifetime, the New York artist helped researchers uncover vital clues about HIV and how to stop it.

Crohn's partner was one of the first people to die from AIDS ... Read More

Using Wordcloud-Reponses to Discover How Students Perceive Concepts in the Classroom

In this blog, I share some "first word that comes to mind" responses of my freshman biology class to the words "germ," "bacteria," "cell," and "DNA." The way that we perceive an idea or concept definitely impacts our relationship with it. Thus, finding out what students think, coming into our ... Read More

TWiM 83 Letters

Matt writes:


Hello TWiM team,

It was great seeing some of you at ASM last week in Boston either in passing between sessions or at the live TWiV episode. I have a few questions about the ASM meeting:
What was something that you all took away from ASM th... Read More

The Fungus That Killed Darwin’s Frog

In his second expedition to South America, Darwin discovered many new species of animals and plants. The field observations obtained throughout this 5-year expedition provided the intellectual framework for the maturation of his ideas on evolution. It also introduced the world to a tiny (2-3 cm ... Read More

Immune upgrade gives 'HIV shielding'

Doctors have used gene therapy to upgrade the immune system of 12 patients with HIV to help shield them from the virus's onslaught. It raises the prospect of patients no longer needing to take daily medication to control their infection. The patients' white blood cells were taken out of the body... Read More

Belly-button brie? Bacteria from human bodies create artsy cheese

You'll need a strong stomach to walk into a new exhibit open at the Dublin Science Gallery: On display are cheeses cultured from the body bacteria of celebrities from the realms of science, food and art.

Eleven "cheese portraits" include a farmhouse cheese, a washed rind, a natural rind, a w... Read More

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