RNA Isolation from soil is one of the most difficult applications we perform in environmental molecular biology. RNA purification is always an arduous task and from soil it becomes a bigger challenge. One of the biggest problems is the yield of RNA from soil. Because typical yields of RNA are s... Read More
The US Food and Drug Administration has recommended that administration of the Rotarix vaccine, which protects against rotavirus infection, be suspended. This action comes after an independent research group found that the vaccine contains DNA of porcine circovirus type 1. Read More
Vincent Racaniello, host of This Week in Virology, appears in the latest episode of Futures in Biotech with Marc Pelletier.
With a focus on RNA viruses, Vincent and and Marc are joined by Stanford University School of Medicine Professor Karla Kirkegaard and discuss where RNA viruses came from... Read More
Merry Youle of the Small Things Considered blog has a new post up that looks at the phage-encoded holin timer and its function in a lytic infection.
"Holins are the smallest known biological timers. Timers, not clocks. Timers tick along, then go off after the specified interval. These small, ... Read More
On episode #74 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent speaks with Adolfo Garcia-Sastre about the origin, pathogenesis, and prevention of the 2009 pandemic influenza H1N1 virus.
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Last year a mutation in the HA gene of the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus was identified in isolates from patients with severe disease. At the time I concluded that the emergence of this change was not a concern. Recently the Norwegian Institute of Public Health reported that the mutation, which caus... Read More
A team of scientists based at San Diego State University, the University of Chicago, and the University of South Florida have analyzed all sequence data available in public databases from complete genomes and environmental community genomes, and found out that jumping genes (known as transposase... Read More
Which grad school should you go to?… should you take that new job?… should you quit your current job?… should you stay in science?… should you get married, go for a run, eat that chocolate bar?…..
You have a multitude of decisions to make in your life. But now you are facing a particularly im... Read More
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
Travis Medley, Bitesize Bio's resident scientific employment guidance counselor, recently attended a meeting for job seekers in the biotech industry during which a panel of senior Human Resources professionals answered questions and provided insight for people looking to find work within biotech... Read More
The hunt continues for novel antiviral agents especially against the pandemic H1N1 virus. In this article, a drug that has been used to fight HIV infection and vesicular stomatitis now appears to have the potential to block influenzavirus infection by inhibiting neuraminidase. This may be yet ... Read More
I recently visited a lab that had a salad spinner on their lab bench and at first I wondered if they were putting together a salad lunch there but when I took a peek I got a nice surprise. It turns out that the salad spinner was actually a bench top, “minifuge” version of a plate centrifuge.
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After spending many months working with all types of biofilms and biomat samples from around San Diego and speaking with scientists all over the world, we understand the difficulty in determining the microbial diversity in these sample types.
In many ways, biofilms are similar to soils in tha... Read More
On episode #73 of the podcast This Week in Virology, Vincent, Dickson, and Rich discuss multipotent progenitor bone marrow cells as a reservoir of HIV-1, integration of HHV-6 into telomeres, and dis... Read More
The common idiom states that pigs cannot fly. I don’t think this statement can be easily debated. However, the swine flu viruses now seem to have flown around the globe quickly... Read More
Ginger Campbell, M.D., emergency room physician and host of the popular Brain Science Podcast, has created a site that highlights over 40 science-related podcasts. While all of MicrobeWorld's podcasts are represented on the site there are also some other great offerings, including:
* ACS ... Read More
On a recent episode of TWiV, we posed the question, 'Can computer viruses evolve'? and asked listeners to weigh in. The author of the blog nostacktrace spent some time thinking about this issue and concludes that the evolution of real computer programs doesn't really work. Software instructions ... Read More
The second RNA segment of some influenza virus strains encodes a protein called PB1-F2 that might contribute to virulence. Speaking about the 2009 pandemic H1N1 strain, Peter Palese noted that “If this virulence marker is necessary for an influenza virus to become highly pathogenic in humans or ... Read More