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Getting Started with MicrobeWorld

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How to make a digital microscope for £15

Ever wanted to take a closer look at the mites on the end of your eyelashes or perhaps see how active (or inactive) sperm cells are? With less than an hour to spare and about £15, you can now make your own digital microscope by following our video guide presented by artist Lewis Sykes from Cyber... Read More

Can we visualise viral infection in real-time?

A recent study published in PLoS ONE demonstrates the ability to track the distribution of 'dyed' viral particles in vivo, in real-time through combining a mouse model with a labeled adenovirus vector - emitting light in the near-infrared range. They analyse the location of virions following sys... Read More

Flu pandemic threatens British sewage works

A severe flu pandemic would send a pulse of drugs into sewage works that could endanger the UK's water treatment system, according to new research.

Sewage works rely on bacteria to break down waste so it's safe to release into rivers. If antibiotics and antiviral drugs make their way through ... Read More

The truth about colds

This may rock your winter world: You can't get a cold just from cold weather.

With people sneezing and coughing around you, or at your child's school, it's important to separate fact from fiction where colds are concerned. In fact, there are more than 1 billion colds in the United States ever... Read More

The Claim: Probiotics Can Soothe a Colicky Baby

Colic is one of the most prevalent conditions of infancy: about 20 percent of all babies suffer the inconsolable bouts of crying that characterize it.

Yet no one really understands what makes a baby colicky. Scientists have investigated a number of causes — allergies, hormones in milk, even s... Read More

Scientists See Success in Flu Vaccine Made by Faster Method

A flu vaccine made by a new, faster method works just as well as existing products, researchers reported Tuesday.

The finding clears a hurdle in the government’s effort to move toward a manufacturing process that could allow for a more reliable supply of seasonal flu shots and quicker respon... Read More

Zinc will help your cold, at least a little

A new look at the medical evidence shows zinc supplements may take the edge off the common cold.

But not a whole lot.

Although the precise estimate is still uncertain, researchers found that people who started taking zinc-loaded lozenges or syrups within 24 hours of showing symptoms -- a s... Read More

B.C. scientists discover how to reduce wine headaches

A new strain of wine yeast developed at the University of British Columbia produces fewer amines, chemicals in red wine and Chardonnay that produce off flavours and trigger headaches, hypertension and migraines in many people.

Food biotechnologist Hennie van Vuuren spent eight years in resear... Read More

Cell-based flu shot beats current vaccine: study

Flu vaccines made from lab-grown cells work at least as well as those derived from viruses cultivated in chicken eggs, the preferred method for 50 years, according to a study released Wednesday.

The findings, reported in The Lancet, could help speed approval for the new technique in the Unite... Read More

New Yeast Strain in Wine Eliminates Toxins that Cause Headaches

A new strain of wine yeast developed at the University of British Columbia produces fewer amines, chemicals in red wine and chardonnay that produce off flavours and trigger headaches, hypertension and migraines in many people.

"This is the first organism that has been improved [through geneti... Read More

"The Unseen World"

Philadelphia artist Kate Kaman (www.katekaman.com) has designed a dynamic larger-than-life sculptural depiction of the most plentiful and ancient microscopic life forms -- bacteria. Suspended throughout an area measuring approximately 130 feet long, 27 feet wide and 41 feet tall, “The Unseen Wor... Read More

New Malaria Vaccine Depends on … Mosquito Bites?

The same menace that spreads malaria -- the mosquito bite -- could help wipe out the deadly disease, according to researchers working on a new vaccine at Tulane University.

The PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI), established in 1999 through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation,... Read More

Lavender Oil Has Potent Antifungal Effect

Lavender oil could be used to combat the increasing incidence of antifungal-resistant infections, according to a study published in the Journal of Medical Microbiology. The essential oil shows a potent antifungal effect against strains of fungi responsible for common skin and nail infections.

... Read More

Tips from the journals of the American Society for Microbiology

Dry Copper Kills Bacteria on Contact

Metallic copper surfaces kill microbes on contact, decimating their populations, according to a paper in the February 2011 issue of the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology. They do so literally in minutes, by causing massive membrane damage afte... Read More

First pathogen with a human gene: N. gonorrhoeae plays the field, accepts DNA from bacteria AND humans

Of the many things that have been said about gonorrhea, here’s one thing no one ever guessed: gonorrhea is a little bit human. A study published in mBio today reveals that the genomes of some strains of Neisseria gonorrhoeae carry a piece of the human long interspersed nuclear element (LINE) L1.... Read More

Uncovering the Genome Secrets of the Blackleg Fungus

The genome of the Blackleg fungus, which causes the most damaging disease to canola crops worldwide, has been sequenced for the first time by a team of French and Australian scientists.

"The 12,500 genes that constitute the genetic blue print for the fungus Leptosphaeria maculans have been id... Read More

A novel subgroup of mosquitoes encourages scientists to rethink the fight against malaria

A new genetically distinct subgroup of mosquitoes has been identified in sub-Saharan Africa that displays different behaviors and has a higher susceptibility to the malaria parasite than the traditionally-studied type.

The finding, published online today (February 3) in Science, may provide a... Read More

Anthrax report casts doubt on scientific evidence in FBI case against Bruce Ivins

A panel of prominent scientists is casting new doubt on scientific evidence that was a key part of the FBI's case against Bruce E. Ivins, the deceased Army scientist accused of carrying out the deadly 2001 anthrax attacks.

The National Research Council, in a report issued Tuesday, questioned ... Read More

Panel releasing science review of anthrax probe

The National Research Council in Washington is releasing its review of the science the FBI used in its investigation of the anthrax mailings that killed five people in 2001.

A committee of the congressionally chartered group was set to release the report at 11 a.m. Tuesday.

The FBI sought ... Read More

Superbug's spread across West Midlands

A superbug that contributed to the deaths of about 80 patients in Shropshire, has become dominant across the West Midlands.

Researchers in Birmingham, led by Professor Peter Hawkey, said they were surprised at how quickly E.coli ESBL had spread throughout the region.

Professor Hawkey said:... Read More
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