The day we knew would come is finally here. The first locally acquired case of the tropical disease chikungunya was reported in the U.S. today.
The mosquito-borne viral disease first debuted in the Western Hemisphere last year and has since sprawled across the Caribbean, with cases in Puerto ... Read More
This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. How can we possibly harness evaporation and say, run the engine of a car, lift heavy weights, and generate electricity? While investigating the mysterious wrinkles seen in the protective coats of bacterial ... Read More
Wild poliovirus has been detected in the sewers of Brazil and Israel. Fortunately, no cases of poliomyelitis have been reported in either country. Why is poliovirus present in these countries and what are the implications for the eradication effort?
Wild type poliovirus (e.g. not vaccine-deri... Read More
Health officials in West Africa say 25 more people have died from Ebola since 3 July, taking the total number of deaths to 518.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said 50 new cases of the deadly disease had also been reported.
A WHO spokesman said health workers were struggling to contain... Read More
EURAC and University of Vienna discover an opportunistic pathogen in an Iceman tissue biopsy
Ötzi’s human genome was decoded from a hip bone sample taken from the 5,300 year old mummy. However the tiny sample weighing no more than 0.1 g provides so much more information. A team of scientist... Read More
The symbiosis between some plant species and nitrogen-fixing nodule bacteria is one of the most relevant cooperative relationships in the world. It shapes our global vegetation and, not least, the global nitrogen and carbon cycle. The foundations for this process were probably laid in just one e... Read More
Using public toilets in China can often be a challenging undertaking, particularly for those not practiced in the art of squatting. But researchers in China have come up with a new technology that they say can help eliminate one of the most noxious of problems to plague China’s public lavatories... Read More
A team of Chinese and Danish researchers has identified 500 new species of gut-residing microorganisms and 800 new bacterial viruses which could attack them. The findings could lead to promising new treatments and possibly circumvent the current crisis of antimicrobial resistance.
Using a tec... Read More
Pediatrician Jennifer Halverson will never forget her 36th birthday.
The St. Paul native was volunteering at a maternity clinic in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. She felt great — she went to her job that day and then out to dinner with friends.
But when she got home and went to sleep that night in... Read More
The microbial ecosystem in the human gut can switch from one stable state into another, without staying for a long time in between. Key groups of bacteria tend to be either nearly absent, or relatively abundant in any given individual. This discovery highlights fundamental organizing principles ... Read More
Signals from the immune system that help repel a common parasite inadvertently can cause a dormant viral infection to become active again, a new study shows.
Further research is necessary to understand the clinical significance of the finding, but researchers at Washington University School o... Read More
Scientists at the University of Kentucky, led by nano-biotechnologist Peixuan Guo, have made some critical discoveries over the past year into the operation of biomotors, the molecular machines used by viruses and bacteria in the packaging of DNA.
Biomotors function similarly to mechanical mo... Read More
Scientists may be able to entomb the malaria parasite in a prison of its own making, researchers report. As it invades a red blood cell, the malaria parasite takes part of the host cell's membrane to build a protective compartment. The parasite then starts a series of major renovations that tran... Read More
The Lassa virus, endemic to West Africa, uses an unexpected two-step process to enter cells, research has shown. The results suggest that the mechanism by which Lassa virus causes infection is more complicated than previously known, and could lead to new approaches for preventing the disease.
... Read More
Those of us who write about infectious diseases faced a conundrum last week, when the news broke that 60-year-old vials containing viable smallpox virus had been found on the National Institutes of Health campus. A responsible reporter always wants to talk to the experts in any subject. But when... Read More
The cutting edge of robotics may not be a smarter Siri or a less-creepy humanoid Japanese robot. It might be a swarm of bacteria, compelled to do our bidding through a remotely controlled magnetic field.
Some of the biggest technological advances of the past two decades have involved scaling ... Read More
Unlike any other life on Earth, these extraordinary bacteria use energy in its purest form – they eat and breathe electrons – and they are everywhere
STICK an electrode in the ground, pump electrons down it, and they will come: living cells that eat electricity. We have known bacteria to surv... Read More
Saint Cloud, Minnesota, USA (July 8, 2014) Microbiologics, Inc., a leading global manufacturer of ready-to-use biological controls and standards, has partnered with Biomatrica, Inc., a world leader in ambient temperature stabilization of biomaterials. Microbiologics has licensed Biomatrica’s DNA... Read More
Cryptococcus gattii, a virulent fungus that has invaded the Pacific Northwest, is highly adaptive and warrants global "public health vigilance," according to a study by an international team of researchers. C. gattii, which likely originated in Brazil, is responsible for dozens of deaths in rece... Read More
A new theoretical framework outlined by a Harvard scientist could help solve the mystery of how bacterial cells coordinate processes that are critical to cellular division, such as DNA replication, and how bacteria know when to divide.
For decades, scientists have believed that cellular divis... Read More