When antibiotics first started being used in the 1940's they were considered a "miracle drug". It seemed that bacterial infections would no longer be a problem for the world. However, recently, one gene is making it seem as though the end of antibiotics is at hand. This gene is New Delhi metallo... Read More
Click "source" to view the full "Report to the President on U.S. Preparations for 2009-H1N1 Influenza" from the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.
Here is the Council's "planning scenario":
Indeed, the 2009-H1N1 influenza is already responsible for significant morbi... Read More
The TWiV gang answers follow-up questions about the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa, then discuss treatment of disseminated multiple myeloma with oncolytic measles virus.
I have been following TWIP for several years. I am a software engineer and parasitology is only an avocation. As an undergraduate in the early 80's I discovered my love of history of science and ecology, although I continued the p... Read More
El podcast del Microbio Nº185 deals with the discussions inside WHO about the fate of the last vials with smallpox virus. E... Read More
El podcast del Microbio Nº258 deals with the sequencing of the Yersinia pestis strain that causes the Black Death. El podcast de... Read More
The World Health Organization’s campaign to eradicate poliomyelitis made impressive inroads in 2012: only 212 cases were reported, compared with 620 the previous year; moreover, India remained polio-free. The dark side of this story is that as wild polio is eliminated, vaccine-associated poliomy... Read More
Got your attention, eh? This page discusses why so many people believe that antibiotics kill viruses, and what you can do about that myth. Actually, it's not even a myth ... antibiotics DO work against viruses. The problem is that the word "antibiotics" is redefined by some to be a synonym of... Read More
There are many elements that go into making a great lecture, but the most important one is to lose the notes. If you are giving lectures in a course at any level, the worst practice you can engage in is to rely on notes. This behavior is problematic for several reasons. You will not properly kno... Read More
Earlier this month the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) published the DNA sequence of the genome of HeLa cells, the cell line that is widely used for research in virology, cell biology, and many other areas. This cell line was produced from a tumor taken from Henrietta Lacks in 1951.... Read More
Poliovirus recently made the cover of Time magazine. Prompted by a reader question, I searched the Time archive to find out if there have been other virology-themed covers. I found fifteen in all, depicting poliovirus (3), herpesvirus (1), HIV/AIDS (4), influenza (5), and SARS coronavirus (2) (I... Read More
About 2% of the world’s population is chronically infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV). This enveloped, positive-strand RNA virus was discovered in 1989, but serological and phylogenetic evidence indicates that it has been infecting humans for hundreds of years, perhaps as long ago as the 14th ... Read More
El podcast del Microbio Nº214 summarize the recent work on Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, a fungus that parasitize ants, taki... Read More
In this blog post, I describe a simple "colony transformation" experiment I have done with my freshman students, illustrating transformation, antibiotic resistance, and GFP. The visual aspects help drive home the points effectivel. Read More
El podcast del microbio Nº 361 summarize the article writen by Marks LR, Reddinger RM and Hakansson AP and published in mBio about the high levels of genetic recombination in Streptococcus pneumoniae ... Read More
This episode: Bacteria are able to incorporate DNA from the environment into their genomes, even if it's thousands of years old!
(9.6 MB, 10.5 minutes)
How many different viruses are there on planet Earth? Twenty years ago Stephen Morse suggested that there were about one million viruses of vertebrates (he arrived at this calculation by assuming ~20 different viruses in each of the 50,000 vertebrates on the planet). The results of a new study s... Read More
Jonathan Eisen (@phylogenomics on Twitter) has a new post on his The Tree of Life blog that looks at why the paper "Phylogenetic structure of the prokaryotic domain: The primary kingdoms" by Carl Woese and George Fox may be the most important paper (see http://www.pnas.org/content/74/11/5088.ful... Read More
This is a paper that speaks of horizontal gene transfer in cancer, something that is against the widely recognized model of cancer development of a vertically evolved system that gives rise to tumors. Albeit, this system involves an in vitro model of a EBV induced cancer, viruses have historica... Read More
Poliovirus has made the cover of Time magazine. The Time cover image for the 14 January 2013 issue is a model of poliovirus bound to a soluble form of its cellular receptor, CD155. I was part of the team that solved the structure of this complex in 2000, together with the laboratories of Jim Hog... Read More