Merry Youle from the Small Things Considered blog ponders the potential size a virus can be:
"With such fascinating stories being told by Mimivirus and the other giants, people are now looking for them in more environments. Modified techniques are called for, as those used previously to spot ... Read More
I have been using twitter (@Microblogology) as a way to keep in touch with some of my online friends for awhile now. Eventually my occasional tweets involving microbiology caused me to be "discovered" by Chris Condayan (@MicrobeWorld) and I was quickly followed by some other people in the scien... Read More
As the “humongous fungus” shows, fungi can grow to enormous mass if unimpeded.
Hyphae grow by adding cells at the tip. Hyphae are very tiny, measuring only a few microns in diameter in some cases. But they can also be incredibly strong, punching through not only the soft membranes of animal ... Read More
Small Things Considered
Microbes require nutrients to grow. These are supplied by either solid or liquid culture media. The standard solid medium is nutrient agar, a gelatinous substance derived from seaweed. The basic liquid medium is nutrient broth, typically a mix of water, meat extract peptone, and sodium chlori... Read More
New York Times article by David Tuller, a journalism professor at Berkeley, on chronic fatigue syndrome and the retrovirus XMRV. The main focus of the article are four papers published in the journal Retrovirology at the end of 2010 which pointed to contamination as a potential issue for those a... Read More
Vincent and Dickson move on to protozoan parasites with a discussion of the early history of malaria.
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Vincent and Dickson discuss the life cycle and pathogenesis of Onchocerca volvulus, the vector-borne filarial nematode parasite that causes onchocerciasis, or river blindness.
Do... Read More
Vincent and Dickson continue their discussion of malaria, with emphasis on clinical aspects of the disease.
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As you know, we keep food in refrigerators so it will last longer. But still, sometimes you open a bag of bread or a jar of spaghetti sauce and what do you find? Mold!!
Ever wonder exactly what mold is? And how did it get there? And why sometimes it’s green and other times black or wh... Read More
Fungi can be found in rising bread, moldy bread, and old food in the refrigerator, and on forest floors. Most decompose non-living things, but some damage crops and plants. A few cause problems in people, such as Candida, which causes yeast infections.... Read More
Ages ago, as land plants were evolving, they ran into a few impediments. Soil can sometimes prove a nutrient-poor and inhospitable environment. In order to grow and thrive, plants need nitrogen to make proteins, but they lack the chemistry set to convert f... Read More