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With Swine Flu On The Wane, Health Officials Look Ahead

As the first influenza pandemic of this century appears to have turned a corner, preparations are already under way for next flu season.

Today the World Health Organization picked the strains to go in next fall's Northern Hemisphere flu vaccine. The ingredients: the pandemic H1N1, or swine fl... Read More

Point of care testing for MRSA is effective

A study has investigated whether a commercial real-time polymerase chain reaction test for MRSA could be used as a point of care test.

GeneXpert systems, used to carry out the MRSA test, were installed on four wards at the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust and in the microbiolo... Read More

Tobacco bacterias are potential cause of URI's

As if another reason was needed to quit smoking, though this one is certainly a doozy. Read More

Mineral studies advance antibacterial alternatives

The Haydel-Summers collaborative has added clarity to these distinctly muddy waters by screening more than 50 mineral mixtures (and aqueous extractions from them, known as leachates) marketed as health and cosmetic products using pathogens Escherichia coli, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimuriu... Read More

Washing hands is a smart preventive; so is washing trauma patients

Swabbing down trauma patients with disposable, antiseptic-laced cloths appears to pay off in terms of infection control.

Doctors at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle found that patients given a daily antiseptic wipe down were much less likely to develop a catheter-related bloodstream infe... Read More

Engineered bacteria

Researchers have devised a way to attach sugars to proteins using unique biological and chemical methods. This means that large quantities of different glycoproteins can be generated for various medical and biological studies.

When the intestinal bacterium E. coli and the diarrheal pathogen ... Read More

CDC: Regional H1N1 in five states

Five states reported regional H1N1 influenza activity, and Puerto Rico and six states reported local influenza activity, U.S. health officials said Friday.

The weekly flu surveillance report -- completed during flu season by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- said for the week ... Read More

Contagion, the movie

Contagion is the name of a new action-thriller movie about a global outbreak of a deadly viral disease. Slated to be released in 2011, it is directed by Steven Soderbergh and stars Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Marion Cotillard, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Lawrence Fishburne. That’s certainly an ... Read More

BacterioFiles Episode 7

In this show, I report on five exciting stories: a bacterial electric grid, engineering biofilms, beewolves that use antibiotics, tiny bacterial magnets, and microbial life's potential on Mars.





























(14 MB, 15 mi... Read More

Large Pockets of Methane May Be Building Under Antarctic Ice

Microbes living under ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland could be churning out large quantities of the greenhouse gas methane, a new study suggests.

In recent years scientists have learned that liquid water lurks under much of Antarctica’s massive ice sheet, and so, they say, the potentia... Read More

3-D cell culture: Making cells feel right at home

The film "Avatar" isn't the only 3-D blockbuster making a splash this winter. A team of scientists from Houston's Texas Medical Center this week unveiled a new technique for growing 3-D cell cultures, a technological leap from the flat petri dish that could save millions of dollars in drug-testi... Read More

Sigh of relief: Mutations don’t help H1N1

The H1N1 pandemic hasn’t been the devastating and deadly global event the WHO once feared it might be, but public health officials worry that a more virulent form of the virus could emerge and cause a second, more lethal wave of cases. Mutations in genes that encode the viral ribonucleoprotein ... Read More

Obama’s C.D.C. Director, Wielding a Big Broom

No federal health agency changed more during the Bush administration than the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It got new buildings, new managers and an entirely new operating structure.

A year into the Obama administration, only the new buildings remain. Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, th... Read More

Study finds dental bib chain contamination

A study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Dentistry Oral Microbiology Laboratory found that dental bib clips may be potential sources of cross-contamination in a dental office.

Researchers sampled 50 bib clips from hygiene and dental operatories. One out of five... Read More

New Powerful Microscopy Shows Antimicrobial Proteins Killing Bacteria

US researchers have developed a new powerful microscopy technique and used it to show proteins killing bacteria in real time, thus revealing the deadly workings of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), naturally occurring proteins that scientists are pursuing as a new approach to treating bacterial inf... Read More

It came from your keyboard!

Its a lot more crowded in your cubicle than you probably thought eh? With these little guys, even when you're by yourself you're never alone! Read More

The Poppy’s Secret: Scientists Find the Genes That Make Morphine

For millennia, humans have used the codeine and morphine of the poppy plant as painkillers—or recreational drugs. For the last half-century, says Peter Facchini, biologists have tried to unlock just how the plant produces these powerful chemicals, and wound up frustrated. But now, in a study in... Read More

Did 'midwife molecule' assemble first life on Earth?

The primordial soup that gave birth to life on EarthMovie Camera may have had an extra, previously unrecognised ingredient: a "molecular midwife" that played a crucial role in allowing the first large biomolecules to assemble from their building blocks.

The earliest life forms are thought by ... Read More

Heating up the climate may light a fire under fungal diseases

Will global warming make fungal infections a bigger problem for humans?
Fungi usually prefer to keep the thermostat turned down around 12ºC to 30ºC, a bit colder than the human body. This preference for cooler temperatures is part of the reason relatively few fungi have emerged as human path... Read More

Complete genomics finds its first diseases

Whole-genome sequencing is touted as the tech that will finally unmask our genetic "dark matter" - as-yet unknown disease-drivers that are missed by current gene scans. It hasn't done that yet, but for the first time two separate groups of researchers have used it to uncover mutations underlying... Read More
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