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
Urea is a small molecule formed as proteins are broken down. It’s excreted in urine, but isn’t particularly toxic at low levels so it’s found in cells throughout the body. The molecular structure of urea is below, and as it contains nitrogen (N) several pathogens have adapted to use it as a nitr... Read More
Recently, the American Academy of Microbiology released a new report, Viruses Throughout Life & Time: Friends, Foes, Change Agents that delves into the origin of viruses, the overlooked biological and microbial ecological role of viruses, and how these live forms have contributed to evolution. T... 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
A new combination drug therapy cures chronic hepatitis C in most patients also infected with HIV—and without the side effects of current treatments.
The advance is important, researchers say, because about a third of HIV patients in the United States also have hepatitis C. There are an estima... Read More
HIV-1, the most common type of the virus that causes AIDS, has proved to be tenacious, inserting its genome permanently into its victims' DNA, forcing patients to take a lifelong drug regimen to control the virus and prevent a fresh attack. Now, a team of researchers has designed a way to snip o... Read More
This is the time of the year of increased physical activity when we pay special attention to certain parts of the body, including the armpit. As is usually the case, our microbiota is involved because the odor associated with sweating is produced by microbial activity. The main culprits are skin... Read More
When patients take too many unnecessary antibiotics it inches us ever closer to a world where essential drugs are no longer effective. More than two million people in the United States develop antibiotic resistant infection each year and some 23,000 of them die as a result. Yet understanding the... Read More
A UAB research concludes that the Streptococcus mutans, one of the principal bacteria causing dental caries, has increased the changes in its genetic material over time, possibly coinciding with dietary changes linked to the expansion of humanity.
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A special class of tiny gold particles can easily slip through cell membranes, making them good candidates to deliver drugs directly to target cells.
A new study from MIT materials scientists reveals that these nanoparticles enter cells by taking advantage of a route normally used in vesicle-... Read More
A few years back Rogan Brown moved from London to a remote region of France. “It was an overwhelming experience,” he says, “and as an artist I was looking for a way to come to terms with my new environment.” Landscape painting seemed too staid, so he started trying to recreate bits of the teemin... Read More
This episode: Engineered bacteria can be made to produce many different useful kinds of biofilm!
(10.5 MB, 11.5 minutes)
One of the Wellcome Trust’s areas of focus for research funding is combatting infectious disease. We have recently agreed a strategic award of over £7.5 million to continue development of an effective and sustainable approach to reducing the transmission of dengue fever. The research is an inte... Read More
The microbes living in the guts of males and females react differently to diet, even when the diets are identical, according to a study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and six other institutions published this week in the journal Nature Communications. These results suggest ... Read More
When it comes to infecting humans and animals, bacteria need a helping hand.
Kansas State University biochemists have found the helping hand: groups of tiny protein loops on the surface of cells. These loops are similar to the fingers of a hand, and by observing seven individual loops on the ... Read More
A new test for HPV has been cleared as way to screen for cervical cancer, but doctors are concerned that it doesn't do enough to protect younger women.
By its name alone, the Pap smear sounds like an uncomfortable procedure. Say it aloud: Pap smear. And it’s not too pretty to experience eithe... Read More
A third of the global population is infected with the bacterial pathogen that causes tuberculosis. Most carriers control the infection and are asymptomatic, but severe forms of the disease kill over a million people every year. A new article now identifies a factor made by the host that exacerba... Read More
Soil deep in a crater dating to some 3.7 billion years ago contains evidence that Mars was once much warmer and wetter, says University of Oregon geologist Gregory Retallack, based on images and data captured by the rover Curiosity.
NASA rovers have shown Martian landscapes littered with loos... Read More
Accelerated progress against the global burden of HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis (TB) has been made since 2000 when governments worldwide adopted Millennium Development Goal 6 to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and TB. New estimates from a major new analysis show that worldwide, the number of people l... Read More
Cancer has left its 'footprint' on our evolution, according to a study which examined how the relics of ancient viruses are preserved in the genomes of 38 mammal species.
Viral relics are evidence of the ancient battles our genes have fought against infection. Occasionally the retroviruses th... Read More