The second of two papers on avian influenza H5N1 virus that caused such a furor in the past year was published today in the journal Science. I have carefully read the paper by Fouchier and colleagues, and I assure you that it does not enable the production of a deadly biological weapon. The resu... Read More
El podcast del microbio Nº 243 summarize the Science article by Abi-Rached et al. about the interbreeding between neandhertal an... Read More
Elio Schaechter of Small Things Considered has authored an interesting post today about the motility of bacteria, specifically Paenibacillus, although he does highlight several other strains that swarm, glide or twitch.
"Microbes get around. They can be carried by the wind, by insects, or by ... Read More
Some additional info that I gathered on viruses on the verge of elimination (may or may not be new to you):
It appears that the next virus on the list of FAO to eradicate is PPR virus ( Read More
India has been free of polio for over one year. This is a remarkable accomplishment, considering that just 30 years ago the country recorded 200,000 cases of the disease annually, or one every three minutes. With polio endemic in two neighboring countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan, and in the mo... Read More
TWiV listeners have spent their valuable time writing comments about the podcast on iTunes, and it's a shame that most people don't see them. I'm putting them here as a way of thanking them for their time, and for listening. This i... Read More
El podcast del Microbio Nº206 is dedicated to the recent discovery of stromatolites in deep of Antartic lake Untersee. El p... Read More
Looks like the polio outbreak in the Congo is pretty bad.
http://www.unicef.org/me... Read More
The National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID)has announced the availability of two new resources designed to support pneumococcal disease prevention efforts on NFID’s website, Adultvaccination.org:
• a professional practice toolkit for healthcare professionals (HCPs)
Th... 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
Certain viral infections are known to increase or decrease HIV-1 replication or viral load, perhaps by competing with the same receptors, or via immune and other effects.Many autoantibodies in HIV-1 infection also target the immune network and this may well contribute to pathology. Read More
The American Society for Microbiology Committee on K-12 Education publishes peer-reviewed resources that convey important scientific concepts from the microbial world, such as microbial processes, methods used to study microorganisms and other general science topics. The activities are student-c... Read More
El podcast del Microbio Nº200 is dedicated to the memory of Baruch Blumberg (1925-2011). El podcast del Microbio Nº200 está... Read More
Merry Youle of Small Things Considered has authored a post that looks at Thiomargarita spp.
"Non-motile Thiomargarita was first discovered in 1999 off the Namibian coast, thus was named T. namibiensis. Its cells are large spheres, arranged in chains, each chain enclosed in a mucous sheath. Av... Read More
To the TWiVerati Intelligencia,
Each week you begin your show with the tagline, "This Week in Virology: The podcast about viruses, the kind that make you sick."
I recognize that viruses have been responsible for some of the biggest epidemic... Read More
Life in a high-pressured environment with practically nothing to eat might be ok for high-fashion models, but it’s an unlikely lifestyle choice for a single cell whose usual overriding goal is to become two cells. Yet the largest living ecosystem on Earth—the deep biosphere—is comprised of micro... Read More
I have heard recently that some types of herpes virus may protect us from bacterial infections. This made me remember of myxomavirus, viral oncotherapy and how tumor cells have a compromised immune response. Do you think it is possi... Read More
The genome nucleotide sequence has been determined of the bacterium GFAJ-1, which has been suggested to survive in high levels of arsenic and in fact incorporate arsenic into macromolecules. The sequence does not address the controversy over whether the bacterium can utilize arsenic. I suppose t... Read More
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