Evolution proceeds by selection of mutants that arise by error-prone duplication of nucleic acid genomes. It is believed that mutations that are selected in a gene are dependent on those that have preceded them, an effect known as epistasis. Analysis of a sequence of changes in the influenza vir... Read More
When I was a graduate student at the Medical College of Virginia, many of the microbiologists in my department were very active in the local ASM. Our local ASM provided opportunities to graduate students and postdocs to present their work to an outside audience of scientists from the surroundin... Read More
Yesterday many US newspapers carried front-page stories on the severity of influenza so far this season. The New York Times story began with “It is not your imagination — more people you know are sick this winter, even people who have had flu shots.” Is this really a bad flu season? Read More
There was much written concerning the research published earlier this month in Science, where researchers from China’s Harbin Veterinary Research Institute reported creating an avian H5N1 (highly pathogenic) and pandemic 2009 H1N1 (easily transmissible) hybrid, that according to them, achieved ... Read More
Save the date for Keystone Symposia's meeting on "Fungal Pathogens: From Basic Biology to Drug Discovery" to be held January 15-20, 2012 at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Organized by Joseph Heitman of Duke University, John Taylor of UC Berkeley and Leah E. Cow... Read More
El podcast del Microbio Nº 300 and 301 is dedicated to Joseph Lister, the British surgeon pioneer of antiseptic surgery, o... Read More
One of the very first things you need to do when getting set up for quantitative PCR (qPCR) is to determine the efficiency of the assay because knowing the assay efficiency is critical to accurate data interpretation. And you have to do this every time you design and purchase a new primer pair.
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Vincent visits the University of Georgia where he speaks with Zhen Fu and Biao He about their work on rabies virus and paramyxoviruses.
El Podcast del Microbio" Nº 149 is based in the Nature Physics article by W Roos y G.J.L Wuite. El Podcast del Microbio Nº ... Read More
The Nº 113 and 114 of "El podcast del microbio" summarize the Nature's article: "A formal test of the theory of universal common ancestry". En "El podcast del microbio" Nº 113 y 114 se resume el artículo aparecido en la revista Nature: "A formal test of the theory of universal common ancestry... Read More
Those of you with an interest in virology, or perhaps simply sensationalism, have probably seen the recent headlines proclaiming another laboratory-made killer influenza virus. From The Independent: ‘Appalling irresponsibility: Senior scientists attack Chinese researchers for creating new strain... Read More
David writes (re lice and iron):
All I remember that I know is that one time I let my cat endure a heavy flea infestation for an unconscionably long time. I redeemed myself, if at all, by the knowledge that I slept with her a lot, and so endured a share myself (b... Read More
El podcast del microbio Nº 366 summarize a recent article published in PNAS on the characterization of the critical step in HIV-1 protease maturation by using bioinformatics tools. El podcast del microb... Read More
This is a paper from the Geomicrobiology lab at the Jackson School of Geosciences at the University of Texas at Austin. It was recently published in a special issue of Geomicrobiology Journal focused on geomicrobiology of subsurface microorganisms in cave environments.
In this study we attemp... Read More
If you teach students about viruses and bacteria, recent episodes of The Walking Dead have been using the term "antibiotic" to stand for antivirals. Since students are probably watching the show, it might be a good time to highlight the mistake. I summarized the issues at the associated URL (ht... Read More
In this blog entry, I discuss how marine microbiology is fascinating to students, as well as the topic leading me (via social media) to other marine microbiologists. One of those marine microbiologists made me a "shrunken coffee cup" (shrunken due to being carried below a kilometer of depth on ... Read More
Archaeans are among the earliest forms of life that appeared on Earth billions of years ago. It’s now generally believed that the archaea and bacteria developed separately from a common ancestor nearly 4 billion years ago. Millions of years later, the ancestors of today's eukaryotes split off... Read More
In this blog post, I show a science-cartoon by the great "Beatrice the Biologist" that illustrates an important point in my freshman introductory cell and molecular biology course: no matter how tired we might be, we are incredibly busy on a cellular level! Beatrice is a fine artist who underst... Read More