Home About us MoEF Contact us Sitemap Tamil Website  
About Envis
Whats New
Microorganisms
Research on Microbes
Database
Bibliography
Publications
Library
E-Resources
Microbiology Experts
Events
Online Submission
Access Statistics

Site Visitors

blog tracking


 
 
 

October - 2017

   

Scientists reveal 'superbug's' artillery

        Monash University's Biomedicine Discovery Institute (BDI) researchers have created the first high-resolution structure depicting a crucial part of the 'superbug' Pseudomonas aeruginosa, classified by the WHO as having the highest level threat to human health. The image identifies the 'nanomachine' used by the highly virulent bacteria to secrete toxins, pointing the way for drug design targeting this.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Nidoviruses redundantly express genes and encode more proteins than previously believed, study finds

       Arteriviruses, a family of single-stranded RNA viruses that belongs to the order Nidovirales, produce more proteins and messenger RNAs than previously reported, a finding that provides important insights about a virus that could potentially evolve to infect humans in the future, according to a new research study.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Unexpected finding in the cell's power plant

      Researchers at Karolinska Institutet have discovered that the protein complex RNase P in the cell's mitochondria behaves differently than previously thought. The findings, published in Nucleic Acids Research, gives important new clues on how certain mutations cause mitochondrial disease.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

New antibiotic resistance genes found

      Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have found several previously unknown genes that make bacteria resistant to last-resort antibiotics. The genes were found by searching large volumes of bacterial DNA and the results are published in the scientific journal Microbiome.

Source: phys

 

— Readmore

   

Model predicts how E. coli bacteria adapt under stress

       Researchers at the University of California San Diego have developed a genome-scale model that can accurately predict how E. coli bacteria respond to temperature changes and genetic mutations. The work is aimed at providing a comprehensive, systems-level understanding of how cells adapt under environmental stress. The work has applications in precision medicine, where adaptive cell modeling could provide patient-specific treatments for bacterial infections.

Source: phys

— Readmore

 

September - 2017

   

Hypermutators' drive pathogenic fungi to evolve more rapidly

       In a study published in eLife, Duke researchers show that lineages of the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus deuterogattii house a specific mutation in their DNA that increases their mutation rate. These 'hypermutators,' as they are called, rapidly develop resistance to the antifungal drugs FK506 and rapamycin.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

The global transport of microbes

        Wastewater, tourism, and trade are moving microbes around the globe at an unprecedented scale, a group of international researchers, including Professor Michael Gillings from Macquarie University, have argued. The editorial article, published in the premier journal Science, voices the concerns of the scientists, who warn that as we travel the modern world we leave billions of bacteria at every stop, with potentially hazardous consequences for human health.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Tiny fighters in sediments determine success of invasive marine plants

        Armies of microbes that are invisible to the naked eye battle it out to determine whether exotic marine plants successfully invade new territory and replace native species, UNSW-led research shows.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Why bacteria 'shapeshift' in space

       Bacterial cells treated with a common antibiotic in the near-weightlessness of the International Space Station (ISS) responded with some clever shape shifting that likely helped them survive. The findings had implications for both astronauts and people on Earth.

Source: phys

— Readmore

 

August - 2017

   

Fish food for marine farms harbor antibiotic resistance genes

       From isolated caves to ancient permafrost, antibiotic-resistant bacteria and genes for resistance have been showing up in unexpected places. As scientists puzzle over how genes for antibiotic resistance arise in various environments and what risks to human health they might pose, one team has identified a surprising way some of these genes are getting into ocean sediments: through food for marine fisheries. Their report appears in ACS 'Environmental Science & Technology’.

Source:sciencedaily

 

— Readmore

   

Magic enzymes in 'magic' mushrooms analyzed

       Little fungi pack a punch: 'Magic mushrooms' of the Psilocybe species produce psychoactive compounds that alter perception when ingested. Recently, the effects on the neuronal system caused by their ingredient psilocybin have attracted the interest of pharmacologists. Scientists have now identified four of the enzymes responsible for the biosynthesis of psilocybin. Researchers describe the biosynthetic pathway and introduce a synthetic route that could form the basis of biotechnological production.

Source: sciencedaily

 

— Readmore

   

Antibiotic resistance rises in 'lonely' mutating microbes

        A major study has discovered that so called 'lonely' microbes, those living at low population densities, are more likely to mutate causing higher rates of antibiotic resistance.

Source: sciencedaily

— Readmore

   

How a bacterium can live on methanol

        Researchers have identified all the genes required by a bacterium to use methanol as a food source. The results will help scientists advance the use of this resource in the field of biotechnology.

Source: sciencedaily

— Readmore

 

July - 2017

   

Bacteria never swim alone

        Many animal species display flocking behavior, but the fact that microorganisms do is not as well known. Researchers have now shown that algae and bacteria form flocks at very low concentrations of individuals, a finding that could increase our future understanding of how the organisms infect their host animals.

Source:sciencedaily

 

— Readmore

   

Diatoms have sex after all, and ammonium puts them in the mood

        New research shows a species of diatom, a single-celled algae, thought to be asexual does reproduce sexually, and scientists learned it's a common compound - ammonium - that puts the ubiquitous organism in the mood.

Source:Phys

— Readmore

   

Microbiota Manipulations

       BUG CONTROL: Researchers modified an endogenous Bacteroides promoter sequence to be inducible—it can be turned on or off in mice by adding (right) or omitting (left) anhydrotetracycline (aTC) to the animal’s drinking water. The aTC binds to the TET repressor protein (yellow), thereby preventing its suppression of gene expression. As a proof of principle, the researchers integrated the modified promoter upstream of a sialidase gene in the bacterium’s genome, and showed they could control the enzyme’s activity in mouse intestines.

Source:The scientist

— Readmore

   

HIV hijacks surface molecule to invade cell

       Researchers at the National Institutes of Health have discovered a key step in the process that HIV uses to inject its genetic material into cells. Working with cultures of cells and tissues, the researchers prevented the invasion process by chemically blocking this step, preventing HIV genetic material from entering cells. The findings could lead to the eventual development of new drugs to prevent HIV infection.

Source:Phys

— Readmore

   

Symbiotic ciliates and bacteria have a common ancestor

       Ciliates, just like humans, are colonized by a vast diversity of bacteria. Some ciliates and their bacterial symbionts have become friends for life, as researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen demonstrated by comparing a group of these single-celled ciliates and their bacterial partners from the Caribbean and the Mediterranean Seas. The bacteria provide their ciliate hosts with nutrition by oxidizing sulfur. Surprisingly, they found that this partnership originated once, from a single ciliate ancestor and a single bacterial ancestor, although a whole ocean separates the sampling sites.

Source:Phys

— Readmore

   

Pause to read the traffic sign: Regulation of DNA transcription in bacteria

       One of the central tenets of biology is that information flows from DNA to RNA in order to encode proteins, which function in the cell. Arguably just as critical as the genetic code is the timing of this information flow. By producing the right RNA and right proteins at the right time, a cell can effectively strategize its survival and success. One such regulatory element, the riboswitch, has excited interest as a potential target for antibiotics. After over 10 years of research, Scientists of Goethe University together with colleagues from other universities have put together the puzzle pieces of a riboswitch-based regulatory process in the bacterium Bacillus subtilis, presenting the most extensive model of the timing of riboswitch action to date.

Source:Phys

— Readmore

 

June - 2017

   

New Antibiotic Resistance Genes Found in Soil Microbes

       Farm soil harbors abundant genes related to antibiotic resistance in microbes, including some that have never been identified in human pathogens, according to a study published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Researchers identified novel gene products, including peptides and enzymes, which can provide resistance to classes of antibiotics used to combat a range of bacterial infections, including those that cause strep throat and chlamydia.

Source:The scientist

— Readmore

   

Study: Microbes from Young Fish Extend Older Fish’s Lives

       Turquoise killifish (Nothobranchius furzeri) hit old age after just a couple of months, but scientists have found a way to extend their brief lives. They replaced the gut bacteria of middle-aged fish with microbial species present in younger fish, getting the microbial transplant recipients to live about a month longer.

Source: The scientist

— Readmore

   

Number of Bacterial and Archaeal Type Strains Doubled

        In an effort led by US Department of Energy (DOE) scientists at the Joint Genome Institute (JGI), an international research team released 1,003 novel bacterial and archaeal reference genomes, doubling the volume of existing bacterial type strains and boosting their known microbial phylogenetic diversity by about 24 percent, according to a study published in Nature Biotechnology.

Source: The scientist

— Readmore

   

Ancient Protein Helps E. coli Thwart Viral Attack

       Resurrecting ancient proteins in modern E. coli can protect the bacterium from viral infection, scientists reported. Researchers from Spain engineered the genetic sequences that code for ancestral forms of the protein thioredoxin, including one that would have existed about 4 billion years ago and found that not only did the old protein function in the cells, but when these bacteria were exposed to the bacteriophage T7, they fended off viral infection.

Source: The scientist

— Readmore

 

May - 2017

   

Antibiotic-resistant microbes date back to 450 million years ago, well before the age of dinosaurs

       According to a new study led by researchers from Massachusetts Eye and Ear, the Harvard-wide Program on Antibiotic Resistance and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, "superbugs" known as the enterococci, arose from an ancestor that dates back 450 million years about the time when animals were first crawling onto land (and well before the age of dinosaurs). Published in the journal Cell, the study authors shed light on the evolutionary history of these pathogens, which evolved nearly indestructible properties and have become leading causes of modern antibiotic-resistant infections in hospitals.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Pathogenic bacteria train their defence in lakes and oceans

       Peter Mathisen at Umeå University has found links between the aquatic environment and the spreading of diseases such as tularaemia. The results indicate that aquatic environments act as "gyms" for bacteria, where the presence of predators train their defense against being killed and eaten up. The results are important for assessments of aquatic environments at risk of spreading pathogenic bacteria.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Bioinspired agent kills drug-resistant bacteria

        Researchers in Ireland have developed a bioinspired antimicrobial treatment that can rapidly kill drug-resistant bacteria. The treatment consists of iodo-thiocyanate complexes, which are inspired by enzymes and reactive molecules produced by our immune system.

Source: phys

— Readmore

 

April - 2017

   

Gut bacteria tell the brain what animals should eat

       Neuroscientists have, for the first time, shown that gut bacteria "speak" to the brain to control food choices in animals. In a study published in the Open Access journal PLOS Biology, researchers had identified two species of bacteria that have an impact on animal dietary decisions. The investigation was led by Carlos Ribeiro, and colleagues from the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown in Lisbon, Portugal and Monash University, Australia.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Venus' hair found growing on the surface of underwater volcano after eruption

       A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in Spain and Italy studying the aftermath of the eruption of the Tagoro underwater volcano in 2011 and 2012 has found that colonies of bacteria living in filaments attached to the volcano surface (named Thiolava veneris which is Lation for Venus hair) were the first organisms to colonize the volcano after the eruption.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Caterpillar found to eat shopping bags, suggesting biodegradable solution to plastic pollution

        Scientists have found that a caterpillar commercially bred for fishing bait has the ability to biodegrade polyethylene: one of the toughest and most used plastics frequently found clogging up landfill sites in the form of plastic shopping bags.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Bacteriophages, natural drugs to combat superbugs

       Viruses that specifically kill bacteria, called bacteriophages, might one day help solve the growing problem of bacterial infections that are resistant to antibiotic treatment. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center have determined that phages can effectively reduce bacterial levels and improve the health of mice that are infected with deadly, antibiotic-resistant bacterial 'superbugs.'

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Using rooster testes to learn how the body fights viruses

       Our bodies are constantly under siege by foreign invaders; viruses, bacteria and parasites that want to infiltrate our cells. Using rooster testes, scientists shed light on how germ cells, sperm and egg, protect themselves from viruses so that they can pass accurate genetic information to the next generation. The findings could help researchers better fight viruses in chickens and in people. Credit: University of Rochester Medical Center.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Young human blood makes old mice smarter

        A protein found in young human blood plasma can improve brain function in old mice. The finding was published in Nature. It is the first time a human protein has been shown to have this effect. It is also the latest evidence that infusions of ‘young blood’ can reverse symptoms of ageing, including memory loss, decrease in muscle function and metabolism, and loss of bone structure.

Source: nature

— Readmore

 

March - 2017

   

Prehistoric ancestor of leukaemia virus found in bats

        Ancient DNA traces from the family of viruses that cause a rare type of leukaemia have been found in the genomes of bats, filling the "last major gap" in retrovirus fossil record. The research, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences was conducted by the University of Glasgow and The Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, offered conclusive evidence that these viruses are between 20 and 45 million years old. The findings represented the first concrete piece of evidence that the 'Deltaretrovirus' group had a truly ancient origin in mammals. The results also offer key insights to the characteristics of these viruses and would allow scientists to better understand them in the future.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

A light rain can spread soil bacteria far and wide, study finds

        A good rain can have a cleansing effect on the land. But an MIT study published in Nature Communications reports that, under the right conditions, rain can also be a means of spreading bacteria. Using high-resolution imaging, researchers from MIT's Department of Mechanical Engineering observed the effect of raindrops falling on dry soil laden with bacteria. When falling at speeds mimicking those of a light rain, at temperatures similar to those in tropical regions, the drops released a spray of mist, or aerosols. Each aerosol carried up to several thousand bacteria from the soil. The researchers found the bacteria remained alive for more than an hour afterward.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Zika may be spread by 35 species of mosquitoes, researchers say

        Zika may be spread by as many as 35 species of mosquitoes, including seven found in the United States, according to a predictive model created by University of Georgia ecologists and published Tuesday in the journal, eLife.

Source: phys

— Readmore

 

February - 2017

   

New tool for combating mosquito-borne disease: Insect parasite genes

        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 ability to hijack its hosts' reproduction. Biologists have known that Wolbachia have had this power for more than 40 years but only now have teams of biologists from Vanderbilt and Yale Universities identified the specific genes that confer this remarkable capability.

Source: phys

— Readmore

 

January - 2017

   

Retroviruses 'almost half a billion years old'

        Retroviruses - the family of viruses that includes HIV - are almost half a billion years old, according to new research by scientists at Oxford University. That's several hundred million years older than previously thought and suggests retroviruses have ancient marine origins, having been with their animal hosts through the evolutionary transition from sea to land.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Secret new weapon of insect-transmitted viruses exposed

        Secret new weapon of insect-transmitted viruses exposed. The scientists uncovered molecular mechanisms that the cucumber mosaic virus uses to manipulate plants to make them release odors that attract aphids, which transmit the virus. The work was published Jan. 6 in the journal Cell Research.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

New insights into 'master regulator' of cell division overturn textbook explanation

        An image of fission yeast cells in the process of cell division. Fission yeast cells are related to human cells but are much simpler, making experiments faster and easier to interpret. Importantly, many of the key discoveries in cell biology occur in yeast before being confirmed in humans. Credit: The Francis Crick Institute.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Scientists crack the structure of HIV machinery

        Salk Institute scientists have solved the atomic structure of a key piece of machinery that allows HIV to integrate into human host DNA and replicate in the body, which has eluded researchers for decades. The findings describing this machinery, known as the "intasome," appear January 6, 2017, in Science and yield structural clues informing the development of new HIV drugs.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Researchers discover new mechanism for Type IV pili retraction in Vibrio cholera

        Type IV pili, essential for many pathogens to cause disease, are hair-like appendages that grow out of and are retracted back into bacteria cells, enabling them to move and adhere to surfaces. Although pathogenic bacteria often rely on a specialized molecular motor to retract their pili, a new study in PLOS Pathogens reveals that a minor pilin protein elicits pilus retraction in the cholera bacterium, Vibrio cholerae.

Source: phys

 

— Readmore

 

December - 2016

   

How single-celled organisms navigate to oxygen

        A team of researchers have discovered that tiny clusters of single-celled organisms that inhabit the world's oceans and lakes, are capable of navigating their way to oxygen. Writing in e-Life scientists at the University of Cambridge describe how choanaflagellates, the closest relatives of animals, form small colonies that can sense a large range of concentrations of oxygen in the water. The research offers clues as to how these organisms evolved into multi-cellular ones.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Skin bacteria could protect against disease

        There are more and more examples of the ways in which we can benefit from our bacteria. According to researcher Rolf Lood from Lund University in Sweden, this is true for the skin as well. He has shown that the most common bacteria on human skin secrete a protein which protects us from the reactive oxygen species thought to contribute to several skin diseases. The protein has an equally strong effect on dangerous oxygen species as known antioxidants such as vitamin C and vitamin E.

Source: phys

— Readmore

   

Low-fibre diet puts gut at risk

        Eric Martens at the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor and Mahesh Desai, now at the Luxembourg Institute of Health, together with their colleagues, compared the effects of fibre-poor and fibre-rich diets in mice that lacked their own bacteria and were given a mix of 14 species of human gut bacteria. These microbes normally consume carbohydrates from dietary fibre, but without these nutrients, the bacteria instead degraded the mucus barrier that lines the intestinal wall.Thinning of this protective layer (pictured as indicated by white arrows in the right panel; left panel shows normal layer) exposed the intestinal surface to attack by disease-causing bacteria. More than half of the mice eating a low-fibre diet lost at least 20% of their body weight after infection with the pathogen Citrobacter rodentium.

Source: nature

— Readmore

   

The truth about the five-second rule, according to scientists

        The ‘five-second rule’ – a folkloric guideline on the time it is considered safe to eat food dropped on the floor – has been debunked by a new study. Four different surfaces and food types were used in the experiment. Watermelon, bread, bread and butter, and gummy candy were dropped on surfaces of stainless steel, ceramic tile, wood and carpet for less than one second, five, 30 and 300 seconds. The surfaces were contaminated with a bacterium similar to salmonella. A total of 2,560 measurements were taken with all the different food, surface and time combinations.

Source: independent

— Readmore

 

November - 2016

   

Bacteria behave differently on International Space Station

        Altered Extracellular Model. Biomolecular model based on the gene expression data analyses support the reduction of glucose molecules (blue gradient) and acid buildup (gold gradient) proposed to occur in the boundary layer around the cell. This altered extracellular environment has been hypothesized to result as an effect of reduced gravity-driven forces acting on the cell-fluid system and has been put forth as the biophysical mechanism governing bacterial behavior in space. Blue circles indicate overexpression of genes associated with metabolism, while gold circles represent the overexpression of acidic condition genes.

Source: sciencedaily

— Readmore

   

Fungi boost bacterium

        Benjamin Wolfe at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, and his colleagues examined the relative abundance of Staphylococcus bacteria (three species pictured), which are common in cheese. They found that Staphylococcus equorum dominated, despite being the slowest grower in lab tests. In the presence of fungi of the genus Scopulariopsis, S. equorum lowered its expression of genes involved in iron uptake and metabolism. The fungi could be providing the bacterium with freely available iron needed for growth, saving S. equorum the effort of acquiring and processing the nutrient, and allowing it to outcompete other bacteria. Fungi could be influencing the diversity of other bacterial communities, including those in humans, the authors say.

Source: fems

— Readmore

   

Engineers design a new weapon against bacteria

        A team of researchers at MIT, the University of Brasilia, and the University of British Columbia has now engineered an antimicrobial peptide that can destroy many types of bacteria, including some that are resistant to most antibiotics.

Source: sciencedaily

— Readmore

   

HOOKED

        Marinomonas primoryensis (about 1.5µm in length without the flagellum) latches onto ice floes in the Antarctic Ocean.

Source: the-scientist

— Readmore

 

October - 2016

   

Ancient microbe fossils show earliest evidence of shell making

        Roughly 809-million-year-old microbe fossils, such as this one found in Canada, may be the oldest evidence of organisms creating minerals for protection against predators. The shells take many shapes, including this honeycomb pattern.

Source: sciencenews

— Readmore

   

The Seaweed Holobiont

        The oxygen generated via photosynthesis by the seaweed and the presence of a source of carbon-rich constituents from macroalgal cell walls, turn the algae’s surface into a good microenvironment for a bunch of different microorganisms.

Source: fems

— Readmore

   

Amazing world of Microbes: Some Unbelievable facts about Microorganisms

        Beef tapeworm is the largest parasite (which causes taeniasis in human), which can easily grow 7½ meters or 25 feet long!.

Source: microbeonline

— Readmore

   

New analysis of big data sheds light on cell functions

        Researchers have developed a new way of obtaining useful information from big data in biology to better understand—and predict—what goes on inside a cell. Using genome-scale models, researchers were able to integrate multiple different data sets and discovered new biological patterns among different cellular processes. The research, led by bioengineers at the University of California San Diego, was published online Oct. 26 in Nature Communications.

Source: phys

— Readmore

 

September - 2016

   

Computers learn to spot deadly bacteria

        Machine learning can predict strains of bacteria likely to cause food poisoning outbreaks, research has found. The study -- which focused on harmful strains of E. coli bacteria -- could help public health officials to target interventions and reduce risk to human health. The researchers used software that compares genetic information from bacterial samples isolated from both animals and people.

Source: Phys

— Readmore

   

More than 7 million bacterial genes in the pig gut

        An international consortium of researchers from INRA (France), University of Copenhagen and SEGES (Denmark), BGI-Shenzhen (China) and NIFES (Norway) has now established the first catalogue of bacterial genes in the gut of pigs. This achievement is published in the latest issue of Nature Microbiology. The researchers identified 7.7 million genes and identified a large number of known and unknown bacteria. The results showed clear country dependent differences, reflecting differences in farm systems and antibiotics supplementation. The results further illustrate how age, gender, and pig genetics are associated with differences in the composition of bacteria in the gut.

Source: Phys

 

— Readmore

   

Poisonous, cancer-fighting, glow-in-the-dark 'ghost fungus' enchants Border photographers

        In the dead of night at the Chiltern-Mt Pilot National Park, an elusive glow-in-the-dark fungus has been enchanting photographers.

Source: britmycolsoc

— Readmore

 

August - 2016

   

New technique shows protein changes in intact microbial communities

        By looking at how microbial proteins are modified over time, scientists can begin to understand changes in the broader community. The protein changes, or post-translational modifications (PTMs), occur in response to a sensed environmental cue. These alterations create rippling signal cascades, often leading to pervasive changes in the organism's growth and behavior. Although scientists have studied this regulatory mechanism extensively in individual organisms, its role at the scale of a complex community remains poorly understood. A new technique resulting from this study allows PTM analysis in proteins collected from an intact microbial community. This type of analysis allows scientists to link PTMs to larger, community-scale attributes that can be readily identified. They can translate these attributes into broader changes in biological processes in different environments.

Source: Phys

— Readmore

   

Bacteria supply their allies with munitions

        The growing interest in the trillions of bacteria that live inside our guts is underlined by the more than 10,000 people who read the recent PLOS Biology essay by Diana Bojanova and Seth Bordenstein – "Fecal Transplants: What is being transferred?" – in its first two weeks. But why just imagine these swarming denizens of your GI tract when you could actually watch them?

Source: Phys

 

— Readmore

   

Discovery of an ape virus in an Indonesian rodent species

        The gibbon ape leukemia virus (GALV) is a medically important tool in cancer therapies. GALV is a retrovirus pathogenic to its host species, the southeast Asian lar gibbon (Hylobates lar) and thought to have originated from a cross-species transmission and may not originally be a primate virus at all. An international research team screened a wide range of rodents from southeast Asia for GALV-like sequences. The discovery of a new GALV in the grassland melomys (Melomys burtoni) from Indonesian New Guinea supports the hypothesis that this host species, and potentially related rodent lineages in Australia and Papua New Guinea, may have played a key role in the spread of GALV-like viruses.

Source: sciencedaily

— Readmore

   

Researchers succeed in developing a genome editing technique that does not cleave DNA

        A research team has succeeded in developing 'Target-AID', a genome editing technique that does not cleave the DNA. The technique offers, through high-level editing operation, a method to address the existing issues of genome editing. It is expected that the technique will be applied to gene therapy in the future in addition to providing a powerful tool for breeding useful organisms and conducting disease and drug-discovery research.

Source: sciencedaily

— Readmore

 

July - 2016

   

Vibrio cholerae swimming in the gut of a live zebrafish

        The growing interest in the trillions of bacteria that live inside our guts is underlined by the more than 10,000 people who read the recent PLOS Biology essay by Diana Bojanova and Seth Bordenstein – "Fecal Transplants: What is being transferred?" – in its first two weeks. But why just imagine these swarming denizens of your GI tract when you could actually watch them?

Source: Phys

— Video

   

Researchers uncover the mechanism that triggers host plant resistance against parasitic plants

        There exist more than 4,500 plant species that live as parasites on other plants. Some of them cause great damage to agriculture, even leading to the complete failure of crops. Researchers working with Dr Markus Albert at the University of Tübingen's Center for Plant Molecular Biology (ZMBP) and collaborators from the Sainsbury Laboratory in Norwich (Professor Cyril Zipfel, Matthew Smoker) have been investigating the ways in which some species defend themselves against such parasites. They looked at various tomato cultivars that can prevent the dodder parasite from latching onto them. The scientists discovered a gene in the tomato that enabled the plant to recognize the dodder and trigger an innate immune mechanism. Up to now, that kind of defense mechanism had only been observed against microbial pathogens, insects and arachnids. The results suggest that it may be possible to better protect crops against plant parasites.

Source: Phys

— Read more

   

Bacteria avoid age defects through collective behaviour

        As they age, more and more defects arise in most organisms. Researchers from the Niels Bohr Institute have discovered that microorganisms like bacteria can keep a colony young by practicing a common strategy for propagation. The same may be true for, for example, stem cells in humans. The results have been published in the scientific journal Cell Systems.

Source: Phys

— Read more

   

Rare fungus product reduces resistance to antibiotics

        Microorganisms, among them fungi, are a natural and rich source of antibiotic compounds. A team from the Vetmeduni Vienna and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna succeeded for the first time in extracting the rare compound cPM from a filamentous fungus, applying a special method. Using this substance leads to increased susceptibility of a resistant pathogen against standard antibiotics. In total, the team was able to detect six compounds with antibiotic activity. The results were published in the journal Frontiers in Microbiology.

Source: vetmeduni

 

— Read more

   

Fungus a possible precursor of severe respiratory diseases in pigs

        Respiratory diseases in pigs typically involve multiple infections from different pathogens. Some pathogens play a greater role than others in the progression of the disease. The fungus Pneumocystis carinii is a relatively common cause of pneumonia in Austrian pigs, but its role has so far remained largely unexplored. Pneumocystis is considered to be less dangerous than other pathogens, as it probably requires other underlying conditions to sufficiently weaken the immune defence of the animals first.

Source: Phys

— Read more

 

June - 2016

   

Antibody double trouble for HIV

        Genetically engineered human antibodies that bind to two targets on HIV could one day be used to treat and prevent the disease.

Source: nature

 

— Read more

   

Bacterium could curb malaria

        West African mosquitoes infected with the bacterium Wolbachia are less likely than uninfected ones to carry the malaria parasite Plasmodium.

Source: nature

 

— Read more

   

Addressing antibiotic resistance: Breath analysis aims to reduce unnecessary prescriptions

        The overuse of antibiotics gives harmful bacteria the opportunity to evolve into drug resistant strains that threaten health care. To help tackle the problem, scientists have begun a pilot study examining biomarkers exhaled by patients. The team's goal is to develop an efficient (fast, accurate, painless and affordable) test that will assist doctors in prescribing antibiotics only when the treatment is absolutely necessary.

Source: sciencedaily

 

— Read more

 

May - 2016

   

Magic mushroom drug lifts depression in human trial

        A hallucinogenic drug derived from magic mushrooms could be useful in treating depression, the first safety study of this approach has concluded.

Source: scientificamerican

— Read more

   

White House goes big on microbiome research

        The US government is launching an effort to study the vast, and mostly invisible, array of microorganisms that thrive in the human body and across ecosystems.

Source: nature

— Read more

   

Bacteria, not fungi, behind dandruff severity: study

        A team from Japan and China found dandruff, which afflicts around half the world’s population, is more strongly linked to populations of two bacterial groups – Propionibacterium and Staphylococcus – than the Malassezia fungus, which also happily colonises the human scalp and is widely believed to be the main cause of the condition.

Source: cosmosmagazine

— Read more

   

Orange Penicillium: a new fungus among us

        Distinguished by the bright orange color it displays when produced in colonies, this fungus was named as a tribute to the Dutch royal family, specifically His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange. It was reported in a journal published by the National Herbarium of the Netherlands. The newcomer was isolated from soil in Tunisia. This species also produces a sheet-like extra-cellular matrix that may function as protection from drought.

Source: esf

— Read more

   

Bacteria are individualists

        No two bacteria are identical – even when they are genetically the same. A new study from researchers from Eawag, ETH Zurich, EPFL Lausanne, and the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen reveals the conditions under which bacteria become individualists and how they help their group grow when times get tough.

Source: phys

— Read more

 

April - 2016

   

Your gut bacteria are more than what you eat

        Like it or not, the microbes in and on our bodies play a big role in human health and disease. Yet we still don’t know what determines the exact makeup of these invisible communities and how they vary within populations. Now, two large-scale studies show that factors once thought to be critical, such as natural versus cesarean birth, breastfeeding, or body mass index, don't matter as much as researchers had thought. Instead, medication—including heartburn medicine, antibiotics, and statins—breathing efficiency, stool consistency, and age all correlated better with microbiome composition, the two groups report today in Science. Even chocolate consumption has an effect.

Source: sciencemag

— Read more

   

Probiotics stop menopause-like bone loss in mice

        In mice, ovary removal induces the hormonal changes that occur with menopause in women. The findings suggest that probiotic bacteria may have potential as an inexpensive treatment for post-menopausal osteoporosis. However, clinical evidence that probiotics can have a lasting effect on the mix of bacteria in the body is limited.

Source: medicalxpress

— Read more

   

E. Coli: A "Model Organism" From Theodor Escherich's Legacy

        In the late 1800's, the German pediatrician and bacteriologist, Theodor Escherich, was dismayed by the fact that many babies were dying of diarrhea. Because he believed in the "germ theory of disease," he felt that an organism was the causative agent and set about trying to find it. These investigations led him to discover what he called Bacillus communis coli, a Gram negative, rod-shaped bacterium, that is found in the lower intestines of humans as well as other warm-blooded organisms. After his death, it was renamed in his honor as Escherichia coli, commonly referred to and abbreviated as E. coli.1

Source: emlab

— Read more

   

Findings from the Gut—New Insights into the Human Microbiome