WORCESTER, Mass. – A team of researchers at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Life Sciences and Bioengineering Center at Gateway Park has developed a new model system to study fungal infections. The system can be a powerful tool for screening potential drug targets for conditions like th... Read More
One of the biggest disappointments in AIDS research was the failure of Merck & Co.'s STEP trial of an experimental AIDS vaccine, which was terminated prematurely in 2007 when it became apparent that the vaccine seemed to increase the number of people who contracted HIV. Now, British scientists b... Read More
A new study has cast fresh doubts on an AIDS vaccine that was abandoned in 2007 because of fears that it made some recipients more susceptible to HIV infection. The new research is at odds with other studies that cleared the vaccine of responsibility.
The finding reopens the question of wheth... Read More
For the first time this academic year, college campuses have reported a significant drop in cases of influenza-like illness, generally assumed to be pandemic H1N1 influenza, according to the American College Health Assn. Unfortunately, the association also recorded the first two deaths from the ... Read More
Sponsored by the WTO, that's World Toilet Organization, November 19 is World Toilet Day. The event seeks to increase awareness of the importance of toilet sanitation and each individual's right to a safe and hygienic sanitary environment.
One of their activities for this year is The B... Read More
A protein found in the saliva of ticks helps protect mice from developing Lyme disease, Yale researchers have discovered. The findings, published in the November 19 issue of Cell Host & Microbe, may spur development of a new vaccine against infection from Lyme disease, which is spread through ti... Read More
Bird flu viruses would have to make at least two simultaneous genetic mutations before they could be transmitted readily from human to human, according to research published November 19 in PLoS One.
The authors of the new study, from Imperial College London, the University of Reading and the ... Read More
Scientists at Texas A&M University say they are investigating how some viruses, known for attacking humans and animals, instead attack bacteria.
The researchers said information about such viral attackers, called phages or bacteriophages, might aid in the treatment of bacterial infections.
... Read More
DeCode Genetics, a pioneering company that used the Icelandic population as its guinea pigs in detecting disease-causing mutations, filed for bankruptcy on Tuesday.
The company’s demise suggests that the medical promise of the human genome may take much longer to be fulfilled than its sponsor... Read More
Experiments at the Pioneer Valley Life Sciences Institute (PVLSI) at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, Mass., reported in a recent British Journal of Cancer, confirm that University of Massachusetts Amherst chemical engineer Neil Forbes' delivery and trigger system has for the first time s... Read More
Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have found that exaggerated responses of the immune system explain why the elderly succumb to viral infections more readily than younger people. Published in the November 19 Cell Host & Microbe, the study bucks the general belief that declining immune respo... Read More
DOE and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced on October 12 that they will offer $4 million for genomics research projects to develop new plant feedstocks for biofuels. The new funding continues a commitment, begun in 2006, to conduct a joint fundamental research program in biomass... Read More
Forget cookies and milk. Santa wants the swine flu vaccine.
Many of the nation's Santas want to be given priority for the vaccine and not just because of those runny-nosed kids. There's also the not-so-little matter of that round belly. Research has suggested obesity could be a risk factor.
... Read More
It is the perfect way to spoil a vacation, and it has happened 66 times since 2005: an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness aboard a cruise ship. Now a study suggests one possible culprit: dirty restrooms.
Most restrooms on these ships are not being properly cleaned, the authors say, and a sa... Read More
Facing political pressure from the Gulf Coast oyster industry, the FDA has backed off a plan to require raw oysters from the Gulf of Mexico to be treated to rid them of Vibrio vulnificus, a potentially deadly bacteria found in warm-water oysters. Harvesters and politicians had warned that the pl... Read More
The Small Things Considered blog has just started a three-part series on oomycetes, also known as water molds.
The first piece (published today) describes oomycete biology, the other two will focus on a particular oomycete: the late potato blight pathogen.
Here's a clip:
"As you know, ... Read More
Infectious organisms that become resistant to antibiotics are a serious threat to human society. They are also a natural part of evolution. In a new project, researchers at the University of Gothenburg are attempting to find substances that can slow the pace of evolution, in order to ensure that... Read More
Researchers at the La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology and colleagues have found that previous influenza infections may provide at least some level of immunity to the H1N1 "swine" flu."
The question we asked was, 'Is the swine flu more like the seasonal flu or like a totally new strai... Read More
Researchers from Arizona State University have discovered that several species of microbes (cyanobacteria), at least one found prominently in the deserts of the Southwest, have evolved the trait of rope-building to lasso shifting soil substrates.
The study, published Nov. 17 in the journal Pu... Read More
When a woman becomes infected with Chlamydia, the first white blood cells that arrive at the scene to fight the infection are not the most effective. This is shown by a thesis from the Sahlgrenska Academy. This discovery could pave the way for the relatively rapid development of a vaccine agains... Read More