(op-ed article) There is a new and deadly threat making its round in Saudi Arabia. It is the Mers, or the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus and what makes this virus an ominous threat is that the majority of those who had contracted the disease died from it.
Saudi Arabia seems to b... Read More
Have you googled anything today? If so, you may have noticed that the Google Doodle looks different. That's because today is the 161st anniversary of the birth of German bacteriologist, Julius Richard Petri. He was the inventor of the Petri dish – one of the most ubiquitous items used by microbi... Read More
Just in time for swimsuit season, federal researchers are touting a faster, more accurate water-quality test to keep beaches open and people healthy.
“Water quality can change significantly in 24 hours. This way we’re identifying threats to human health almost immediately,” said Meredith Neve... Read More
One widely-used tactic for defense against phage and other mobile genetic elements is to deploy a CRISPR-Cas system (click here and here) to recognize and chop them into pieces. Based on sequenced genomes, 60% of Bacteria and 90% of Archaea have the wherewithal to dispatch invaders this way. But... Read More
Thousands of women suffer from overactive bladder (OAB) or the sudden need to urinate, yet many don’t get relief from medication. Researchers at Loyola University Health System believe certain bacteria may be to blame.
Loyola has launched a clinical trial to determine if the bacteria present ... Read More
Raw oysters, a delicacy for foodies and a purported hangover cure (it isn’t) aren’t always the safest thing to eat. Pathogens such as Vibrio vulnificus, norovirus and Hepatitis A sometimes lurk in oyster flesh. These little nasties can cause food poisoning and norovirus specifically has no treat... Read More
Troublesome strains of Staphylococcus aureus are often troublesome because they carry genes for superantigens and multiple antibiotic resistance. But don’t blame the bacteria. These genes are hitchhikers that arrived by horizontal gene transfer, embedded within mobile pathogenicity islands known... Read More
A new study in the Netherlands has found a deep-sea microbe living in high-temperature hydro-thermal vents can thrive on chlorate and perchlorate anions. Perchlorate, an ingredient in rocket fuel and fireworks, is toxic to most organisms.
The researchers, led by Martin Liebensteiner of Wageni... Read More
Bloodstream infections cut by more than 40 percent in study of over 74,000 patients. Using germ-killing soap and ointment on all intensive-care unit (ICU) patients can reduce bloodstream infections by up to 44 percent and significantly reduce the presence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus ... Read More
Miravirsen is a drug that binds to and blocks the function of a cellular microRNA called miR-122 that is required for the replication of hepatitis C virus (HCV). Treatment of chimpanzees chronically infected with HCV with this drug leads to suppression of viral replication. The results of a phas... Read More
El podcast del microbio Nº 378 summarize an article published in Nature communications by Ribeiro-Viana R et al. on the use of Virus-like glycodendrinanoparticles to block viral infection. El podcast del microbio Nº 3... Read More
Using the same strategy that a common virus employs to evade the human immune system, researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center's Institute for Regenerative Medicine have modified adult stem cells to increase their survival -- with the goal of giving the cells time to exert their natural... Read More
There’s a surprising connection between HIV, Ebola, and viruses that infect organisms called archaea that grow in volcanic hot springs.
The viruses hijack the same set of proteins to break out of infected cells, new research shows.
In eukaryotes—the group that includes plants and animals—a... Read More
DNA preserved in calcified bacteria on the teeth of ancient human skeletons has shed light on the health consequences of the evolving diet and behaviour from the Stone Age to the modern day.
The ancient genetic record reveals the negative changes in oral bacteria brought about by the dietary ... Read More
Great HAI work! I'm not through it yet. I want to question, though, whether fomites are really important in influenza transmission. I don't think so.
[flu can transmit by fomites in guinea pigs: Read More
Scientists have revealed how a bacterial enzyme has evolved an energy-efficient method to move long distances along DNA. The findings, published in Science, present further insight into the coupling of chemical and mechanical energy by a class of enzymes called helicases, a widely-distributed gr... Read More
The cellular interior is criss-crossed by protein-based cables known as microtubules, each formed from 13 'protofilaments' composed of the protein tubulin. Microtubules are also associated with a host of other specialized proteins that help coordinate the transport of molecular cargoes and link ... Read More
Back when the Time Lord and I were still engaged, we went shopping for wedding rings. He only had one criteria: he wanted his ring to be made of platinum or a similar material forged in a supernova. It’s not quite as exotic as it sounds: most heavy elements were formed in supernovae, via a proce... Read More
A top New York chef teams up with Harvard scientists to explore the role of bacteria in fermentation. He hopes to better understand and tweak the process to create new and unique flavors to entice the palate. Sharon Reich reports. Read More
For the first time, researchers have found a particular kind of molecular switch in the food poisoning bacteria Salmonella Typhimurium under infection-like conditions. This switch, using a process called S-thiolation, appears to be used by the bacteria to respond to changes in the environment du... Read More