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Getting Started with MicrobeWorld

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'5 second rule' disproven

If you're a parent then you're familiar with the 5-second rule.

"The 5-second rule probably should become the zero-second rule," Dr. Roy M. Gulick, chief of the division of infectious diseases at Weill Cornell Medical College, told the Times. "Eating dropped food poses a risk for ingestion of... Read More

Good Fungi Might Prove Even Better for Plant, Human Health

Researchers have come closer to understanding how a common fungus "makes its living in the soil," which could lead to its possible "career change" as a therapeutic agent for plant and human health.

Because they are mycoparasites, T. virens attack other, less desirable fungi that can harm root... Read More

Fewer Patients in I.C.U. Getting Blood Infections

Bloodstream infections caused by tubes inserted into major blood vessels of intensive care patients showed a big drop from 2001 to 2009, government researchers said on Tuesday.

But the researchers also reported unacceptably high rates of the same type of infections in other hospital wards and... Read More

Bacteria Communicate With Each Other Through Nanotubes

A pathway whereby bacteria communicate with each other has been discovered by researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The discovery has important implications for efforts to cope with the spread of harmful bacteria in the body.

Bacteria are known to communicate in nature primarily ... Read More

Using artificial, cell-like 'honey pots' to entrap deadly viruses

Researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Weill Cornell Medical College have designed artificial "protocells" that can lure, entrap and inactivate a class of deadly human viruses—think decoys with teeth. The technique offers a new research tool that can b... Read More

US health officials on alert over measles infection

US health officials are warning air travelers about possible exposure to measles, after a woman infected with the highly communicable disease traveled in Britain and several US states.

The 27-year-old first traveled from Britain to Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia, just out... Read More

Report: ICU Central-Line Infection Rate Drops

Good news from the CDC: the number of central-line bloodstream infections in intensive-care patients dropped 58% to an estimated 18,000 in 2009 from 43,000 in 2001.

Why is that important? Because someday you, too, may end up in the ICU with a tube in a chest or neck vein, and you really don’t... Read More

Researchers identify bacteria responsible for childhood dental disease

Researchers at The Forsyth Institute have made a significant discovery about the nature of childhood dental disease. The scientific studies led by Anne Tanner, BDS, Ph.D., identified a new pathogen connected to severe early childhood caries (cavities). This bacterium, Scardovia wiggsiae, was pre... Read More

Gut microbes: silent partners in liver metabolism

A recent boom in research on the gut microbiota is revealing that these communities are even more integral to human health than previously thought. And now a study published in mBio yesterday draws more links between gut microbes and metabolism. Colonizing the guts of germ-free mice with bacteri... Read More

World's Most Powerful Optical Microscope: Microscope Could 'Solve the Cause of Viruses'

Writing in the journal Nature Communications, the team have created a microscope which shatters the record for the smallest object the eye can see, beating the diffraction limit of light.

Previously, the standard optical microscope can only see items around one micrometre -- 0.001 millimetres... Read More

Bacteria as live cargo shuttles for nanofabrication

Bacterial propulsion systems are intriguing for nanotechnology researchers because nature has already solved most of the problems that they are still struggling with in designing molecular motors and other self-sustained nanoscale actuating systems. Indeed, it has turned out to be very challengi... Read More

Genetically engineered fungus may reduce malaria infections

New findings by a University of Maryland-led team of scientists indicate that a genetically engineered fungus carrying genes for a human anti-malarial antibody or a scorpion anti-malarial toxin could be a highly effective, specific and environmentally friendly tool for combating malaria, at a ti... Read More

Ongoing outbreak of measles in Oslo, Norway

Between 19 January and 17 February 2011, 10 cases of measles (eight laboratory-confirmed and two probable) were reported in Oslo with the majority of cases in a mainly unvaccinated immigrant community. Of these, two cases were identified outside the immigrant community, in Norwegian children. Read More

Half of men may have HPV infections: study

Half of men in the general population may be infected with human papillomavirus or HPV, the human wart virus that causes cervical and other cancers, strengthening the case for vaccinating boys against HPV, U.S. researchers said on Monday.

U.S. vaccine advisers have been weighing whether boys ... Read More

Antibody Locks Up West Nile Virus Cell-Entry Mechanism

Researchers identified a monoclonal antibody (MAB) that neutralizes West Nile virus (WNV) by binding and crosslinking viral surface proteins that are needed to infect host cells. "The antibody crosslinking causes the virus to become rigid, and this rigidity prevents conformational changes and lo... Read More

Meningitis: Neisseria Meningitidis Disseminates Itself by Sending out 'Scouts'

Although, in the majority of cases, the localized presence of Neisseria meningitidis in the throat has no consequence, it can sometimes lead to meningitis or septicaemia. The seriousness of these two infections is driving researchers from around the world to improve their understanding of the mo... Read More

Gut bacteria can control organ functions

Bacteria in the human gut may not just be helping digest food but also could be exerting some level of control over the metabolic functions of other organs, like the liver, according to research published this week in the online journal mBio®. These findings offer new understanding of the symbio... Read More

Playboy Mansion bacteria points to Legionnaires’ disease outbreak

Los Angeles County public health officials have identified Legionella bacteria, which causes Legionnaires’ disease, at a water source at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles in its investigation of the source of illness that sickened people after a fundraiser earlier this month.

Public health o... Read More

Researchers Crack Code to Harmful Brown Tides

A team involving University of Tennessee, Knoxville, researchers has conducted the first-ever genetic sequencing of a harmful algal bloom (HAB) species, cracking the genome of the micro-organism responsible for the Eastern Seaboard’s notorious brown tides.
Click here to find out more!

Brown ... Read More

The Impending Crisis in the Clinical Laboratory Workforce

Imagine going to your doctor for a routine checkup and the phlebotomist takes a few blood samples for lab work. Three days later, the doctor's office calls and asks you to come back because they need to get another sample for testing. Wondering if something is terribly wrong, you ask "why?" sinc... Read More
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