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TWiV 132: Virology 911

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Hosts: Hosts: Vincent Racaniello, Rich Condit, Read More

TWiP 17 Letters

Bjorn writes:

Hi Vincent and Dickson,

I want to correct a statement you made in the trypanosomes episode. Apolipoprotein L-I in human blood kills only the subspecies Trypanosoma brucei brucei, whereas the East African subspecies Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and the... Read More

TWiP 29 Letters

Dylan writes:

Dear Professors Racaniello and Depommier,

I hope this email finds you both in good health. I am a second year medical student from Ireland studying at the University of Cambridge, UK and I have been following the TWiP series with considerable interest... Read More

New viruses are providing some clues to how viruses evolved

The science of metagenomics has uncovered that viruses are the most abundant and genetically diverse organisms on earth. In an article published in Microbiology Today, Peter Simmons from the Centre for Infectious Diseases, University of Edinburgh, discusses how discoveries of new viruses are pro... Read More

June 2011 Microbe Feature article--Bat White-Nose Syndrome in North America

The June 2001 issue of Microbe magazine is now online, including the feature article
Bat White-Nose Syndrome in North America
by David S. Blehert, Jeffrey M. Lorch, Anne E. Ballmann, Paul M. Cryan, and Carol U. Meteyer

Since 2007, infections by a previously unrecognized, perhaps imported... Read More

TWiV 146 Letters

Jonathan writes:

First and foremost, this and the podcast of the virology course lectures available on iTunes is a gift to the public. I am applying to medical school and I appreciate the material on a topic I did not have time to take but have had a long standing int... Read More

New influenza A virus found in bats

Influenza A virus reservoirs in animals have provided novel genetic elements leading to the emergence of global pandemics in humans. Most influenza A viruses circulate in waterfowl, but those that infect mammalian hosts are thought to pose the greatest risk for zoonotic spread to humans and the ... Read More

TWiV 88 Letters

Sharon writes:

Hello fellow virus lovers,

I first want to comment about Vincent's pick of the week a few weeks back, the book "Polio" by David Oshinsky. I am currently studying poliovirus in Julie Pfeiffer's lab (as you revealed many moons ago with a previous ... Read More

TWiV 142 Letters

TWiV 142

Marshall writes:

Dear TWiV hosts,

I'm sure you've already heard about this, but I was curious what your take on this study is.

Read More

Baruch S. Blumberg, MD, 1925-2011

Glenn Rall, a virologist at Fox Chase Cancer Center, sent me the following note:

Baruch S. Blumberg, Nobel Laureate in 1976 for discovery of Hepatitis B (and the eventual development of the vaccine, which probably has saved hundreds of thousands of lives since its introduction), died this pas... Read More

A spike for piercing the cell membrane

Some viruses that infect bacteria (bacteriophages) deliver their DNA into the host cell with an amazing injection machine. The tailed bacteriophages (such as T4, illustrated) store their DNA in a capsid attached to a long tail tube that is surrounded by a sheath. At the bottom of the tube is a b... Read More

TWiV 110 Letters

Jay writes:

Looks like the polio outbreak in the Congo is pretty bad.


http://www.unicef.org/me... Read More

Cryptic Life in the Antarctic Dry Valleys

Small Things Considered co-blogger Merry Youle has a post about the diversity of life in McKelvey Valley, a broad, glacially-carved pass just west of McMurdo Sound in Antarctica. Her writing is inspired in part by a recent paper from the University of Hong Kong (See Read More

Are there viruses of arsenic-utilizing bacteria?

A salt-loving (halophilic) bacterium which can grow in medium containing arsenic instead of phosphorus has been selected from the microbial community of Mono Lake in California. Arsenic (As) is a chemical analog of phosphorus and is usually toxic because it can enter metabolic pathways in the pl... Read More

TWiV 163 Letters

Ronnie writes:

Hello Professor Vincent,

First of all, thank you for your wonderful podcasts! I'm a CFS sufferer and also a student Applied Science so I'm interested in many of the topics discussed for those two reasons and always learning new things.

I... Read More

10 Genes, Furiously Evolving

This is a great article by Carl Zimmer in the NY Times (@carlzimmer on Twitter) about the evolution process of viruses.

"Some viruses use DNA, like we do, to encode their genes. Others, like the influenza virus, use single-strand RNA. But viruses all have one thing in common, said Roland Wolk... Read More

What Happened to Our Friendly Enterococci?

Enterococci had been generally regarded as benign commensals, a part of our healthy intestinal microbiota. They were even invited in, being used as probiotics. But then, in the late 1970s, the first multiple drug-resistant strains appeared, and vancomycin-resistant strains followed in 1981. In r... Read More

Whole genome sequence of Borrelia burgdorferi...

Human Lyme disease is caused by a number of related Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato species. We report here the complete genome sequence of Borrelia sp. isolate SV1 from Finland. Read More

The dwindling American science majors

According to the New York Times (Why Science Majors Change Their Minds), the decline in the number of science majors in the United States has come about in part because the subject matter is too difficult. If this explanation is true, then we have not properly prepared these students in grades K... Read More

TWiV 156 Letters

Kevin writes:

Dear Professor Racaniello,

I have just seen some of the ridiculous comments regarding the picture which was posted on your TWiV website.

I have had CFS for over 16 years. I am a very firm believer in scientific method and... Read More

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