I teach Microbiology at the University of Puget Sound every fall semester. The swiftly changing field of microbiology has depth and breath...and I was interested to learn what my students thought of the topic at the beginning of the first day of class. We will revisit this subject at the end o... Read More
Virus Watch is a new weekly video series that explores the amazing world of viruses. This week: the latest research on Zika virus, including finding virus in Brazilian monkeys, dengue antibodies helping Zika virus infection, and brain organoids to study how Zika virus causes microcephaly. Read More
A central pursuit of microbial ecology is to accurately model changes in microbial community composition in response to environmental factors. This goal requires a thorough understanding of the drivers of variability in microbial populations. However, most microbial ecology studies focus on the ... Read More
Microbiologists attending Microbe 2016, the annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology, attempt to explain their science in 30 seconds.
This video was produced during the Lights! Camera! Science! professional development workshop with the help of the attendees.
The music Ask R... Read More
Microbial communities are essential drivers of soil functional processes such as nitrification and heterotrophic respiration. Although there is initial evidence revealing the importance of soil type in shaping microbial communities, there has been no in-depth, comprehensive survey to robustly es... Read More
My undergraduate student Ruth Isenberg has made real progress adapting a GoPro camera to help us watch microbial interactions. Here are two swimming foci of Photobacterium leignothi encountering one another! Read More
Marine plastic debris is a growing concern that has captured the general public’s attention. While the negative impacts of plastic debris on oceanic macrobiota, including mammals and birds, are well documented, little is known about its influence on smaller marine residents, including microbes t... Read More
When I have to explain the organism classification to my students I usually use the one stablished by Woese in the 70s. In this classification, all living things are classified in six kingdoms, that are Eubacteria, Archeobacteria, Protista, Plantae, Fungi and Animalia. All of these groups evolve... Read More
The last time you had a stomach bug, you probably didn’t feel much like eating. This loss of appetite is part of your body’s normal response to an illness but is not well understood. Sometimes eating less during illness promotes a faster recovery, but other times—such as when cancer patients exp... Read More
There is a growing popular and policy interest in the microbiome, and the possibilities of more nuanced or ‘probiotic’ ways of living with germs. To date however there has been limited public engagement with the science and technology of metagenomics. The project engages with the growing scienti... Read More
Biologists are beginning to understand how the trillions of microbes in and on our bodies shape our health. But differences between any two people’s microbial populations are enormous. Most people share around 99 percent of their DNA with the person next to them, but they have a significantly sm... Read More
In this episode of Virus Watch, I explain how mosquitoes spread viruses. We’ll look at how a mosquito finds a host, how it finds a blood vessel, and how it delivers viruses to a new host. Don’t blame mosquitoes for viral diseases: it’s not their fault!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wsk8a3z... Read More
WASHINGTON — The Senate on Tuesday blocked a $1.1 billion bill to combat the Zika virus, giving Congress just two weeks to try to reach a new deal before lawmakers leave for a seven-week recess in the midst of mosquito season and a growing public health crisis. Read More
They’re on your tongue, under your armpits, in your guts and on your skin. In fact, any place you can think of there are microbes living on, under, or in between there. In their unimaginably large numbers, these micro-organisms determine our lives – even though we never see them. Micropia, the w... Read More
The BBSRC and NERC-funded ShellEye project seeks to help shellfish farmers manage threats from harmful algal blooms and E. coli bacteria. The multi-partner ShellEye project brings together industry, government and scientists and aims to develop a satellite-based forecasting system to help fisher... Read More
Today was the last day of my microbiology course at the University of Puget Sound. So I thought it appropriate for students to tell me the single "coolest" thing they learned in my course. Read More
Wolbachia is the most successful parasite the world has ever known. You’ve never heard of it because it only infects bugs: millions upon millions of species of insects, spiders, centipedes and other arthropods all around the globe.
The secret to the over-achieving bacterium’s success is its a... Read More
H.P. Lovecraft fan and composer Reber Clark (https://reberclark.bandcamp.com/) collaborated with my undergraduate student Ruth Isenberg and myself on a science+music+HPL video. When a log phase culture of Photobacterium leignothi is poured into a Petri dish, and 10 second exposures are taken ev... Read More
I like to encourage my students to explore the intersection between art and microbiology. Science + art = awesome! In any event, in this blog post, I describe two microbial art competitions in my microbiology course at the University of Puget Sound. I think my micronauts did some remarkable w... Read More
Vincent Racaniello of the This Week in Virology podcast interviews Neal Nathanson, MD, about his career and professional experience in the field of virology. Nathanson's work has focused on the epidemiology and eradication of poliomyelitis, the control of the HIV/AIDS pandemic and the developmen... Read More