A newly discovered group of 2.1-billion-year-old fossil organisms may be the earliest known example of complex life on Earth. They could help scientists understand not just when higher life forms evolved, but why.
The fossils — flat discs almost 5 inches across, with scalloped edges and radia... Read More
Over the years, people have put forth a lot of theories to explain why intelligence differs, from person to person and even around the world. Health, wealth, schooling, nutrition, and even climate have all come up. Now, researchers at the University of New Mexico suggest that parasites might pla... Read More
Initial tests of Corexit, the oil dispersant that BP is using in the Gulf of Mexico, and of competing products finds that the dispersants range from “practically nontoxic’’ to “slightly toxic,’’ the Environmental Protection Agency says.
In a conference call with reporters Wednesday afternoon,... Read More
A new study shows that treatment with mesenchymal stem cells can triple survival rates in mice with sepsis, a deadly condition that can occur when an infection spreads throughout the body. The treatment reduced the damaging effects of inflammation and increased the body's ability to clear the in... Read More
Lack of sufficient iron may be a significant factor in controlling massive blooms of Emiliania huxleyi, a globally important species of marine algae or phytoplankton, according to research led by researchers at the National Oceanography Centre (NOC) in Southampton.
Emiliania huxleyi is a spec... Read More
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Many of the top grossing movies these days are in 3D. The Good Housekeeping Research Institute wanted to know just how clean those 3D glasses might be.
"Here at the Good Housekeeping Research Institute we just tested seven pairs of 3D glasses. We sent ... Read More
Indiana University Bloomington biologists report in an upcoming issue of Molecular Microbiology that exposure to the extracellular DNA (eDNA) released by dying neighbors stops the sticky holdfasts of living Caulobacter from adhering to surfaces, preventing cells from joining bacterial biofilms. ... Read More
As Princeton microbiologist Bonnie Bassler assumes the presidency of the American Society of Microbiology, Natalie Angier of Smithsonian Magazine has written up a lengthy biographical piece on Bassler's career as a scientist and her focus on bacterial communication.
Here's a snippet from the ... Read More
A Missouri VA hospital is under fire because it may have exposed more than 1,800 veterans to life-threatening diseases such as hepatitis and HIV.
John Cochran VA Medical Center in St. Louis has recently mailed letters to 1,812 veterans telling them they could contract hepatitis B, hepatitis C... Read More
Being wrong isn’t always a bad thing. Take Christopher Columbus: he set out on his voyage expecting to find a shortcut to India, but landed an extended vacation in the Bahamas instead. The authors of an Observation piece just released in mBio were wrong about their assumptions, too, and although... Read More
New research published in the July 2010 print edition of the FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org) explains for the first time how honey kills bacteria. Specifically, the research shows that bees make a protein that they add to the honey, called defensin-1, which could one day be used to treat b... Read More
In the first-ever global survey of indoor fungi scientists report that geography rather than building design and function has the greatest effect on the fungal species likely to be found indoors. The study suggests that the types of mold and other fungi most likely to be found in a dwelling may ... Read More
Swine flu deaths continued their upwards surge since the onset of monsoon with 17 fatalities reported due to the disease in India since June 21, the maximum of which were from Kerala and Maharashtra.
Both the states reported seven deaths each while Andhra Pradesh reported two and Uttar Prades... Read More
What if cleaning up the Gulf of Mexico wasn’t a matter of choosing between harsh chemical dispersants, labor-intensive skimming and potentially dangerous burns? Dr. Richard Gross, professor of chemical and biological science and Herman F. Mark chair at the Polytechnic Institute of New York Unive... Read More
A study led by researchers from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) describes one of the mechanisms in which pathogenic bacteria populations control the way they spread over the surface of the organs they infect and stop when they detect the presence of an antibiotic, only to resume again wh... Read More
At a lab on Grand Isle, La., at the edge of Barataria Bay, biologists hoping to help save the oil-soiled marshlands are at the ready with a vat containing 30,000 gallons of homegrown oil-eating bacteria. But it’s been weeks since the oil started washing up here, and still they await final clear... Read More
The Fourth of July weekend is almost here. Many of us will celebrate with a day of outdoor activities and tasty meats from the grill. The chef of your household might have the skills to cook the perfect burger, but do they know the food safety "drills of the grill?"
The U.S. Department of Agr... Read More
Fundamental to computer science is transmitting information using electromagnetic communication - the 0s and 1s of binary code. But nature's tiniest lifeforms have used a very different method for eons, and figuring out how they do it could revolutionize computers.
Bacteria make great use of ... Read More
Summer’s here, and many vacationers face the question of where to spend these halcyon days: by the water or in the country? The plant pathogen Pseudomonas syringae may be in the same predicament, according to a new paper released by mBio. Morris et al. examined the genetic diversity and traits o... Read More
Just as bacteria and fungi are methodically breaking down the millions of gallons of oil spewing into the Gulf of Mexico, microbes might help us with another uncontrolled emission due to human activity—carbon dioxide.
An anaerobic bacteria by the name of Clostridium ljungdahlii can ferment ev... Read More