Current Microbiology News and Events

Current Microbiology News and Events, Microbiology News Articles.
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Toxins from one bacterial species contribute to genetic diversity of others
A toxin produced by bacteria as a defence mechanism causes mutations in target bacteria that could help them survive. (2021-02-23)

Secret to how cholera adapts to temperature revealed
Scientists have discovered an essential protein in cholera-causing bacteria that allows them to adapt to changes in temperature, according to a study published today in eLife. (2021-02-16)

Ebola is a master of disguise
Ebola is so pernicious because it pulls a fast one on the body, disguising itself as a dying cell. A study published in the journal PLOS Pathogens, identifies a pathway that all filoviruses use to gain entry into our cells--and shows how they can be stopped in their tracks by at least one FDA-approved drug. (2021-02-11)

Six previously FDA-approved drugs appear promising against SARS-CoV-2 in laboratory testing
A team of investigators from the Republic of China has discovered that six drugs previously approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for other indications could be repurposed to treat or prevent COVID-19. The research is published in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology. (2021-02-09)

Duration of antibody response varies among adults naturally reinfected with RSV
Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine found that while most individuals responded to respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) natural reinfection with a typical sustained antibody response associated with protection, a few individuals surprisingly responded atypically, not being able to sustain the antibody response, which declined to levels that made the individuals susceptible to RSV reinfection. (2021-02-04)

Toxin-antitoxin function fuels antibiotic-resistance research
Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are now known to negatively control plasmid replication, according to Thomas Wood, Biotechnology Endowed Chair and professor of chemical engineering in the Penn State College of Engineering. (2021-02-01)

At-home swabs diagnose infections as accurately as healthcare worker-collected swabs
Self swabs and caregiver swabs are effective at detecting multiple pathogens and are just as accurate as those taken by healthcare workers, according to a team of Australian researchers. The research appears in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, a publication of the American Society for Microbiology. (2021-01-28)

Soil health is as environmentally important as air and water quality, say microbiologists
Healthy, sustainably managed soil is a critical ecosystem for continuous sustenance of plants, animals and humans globally. While the concept of 'soil health' still continues to evolve, the versatility of the concept allows its adoption by many stakeholders. (2021-01-26)

Vaccine shows potential against deadly leptospirosis bacteria
Scientists have designed a single-dose universal vaccine that could protect against the many forms of leptospirosis bacteria, according to a study published today in eLife. (2021-01-26)

SARS-CoV-2 reacts to antibodies of virus from 2003 SARS outbreak, new study reveals
A new study demonstrates that antibodies generated by the novel coronavirus react to other strains of coronavirus and vice versa, according to research published today by scientists from Oregon Health & Science University. (2021-01-25)

NSAIDs might exacerbate or suppress COVID-19 depending on timing, mouse study suggests
New research shows that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) reduced both antibody and inflammatory responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection in mice. The study appears this week in the Journal of Virology, a publication of the American Society for Microbiology. (2021-01-22)

Seeds transfer their microbes to the next generation
Scientists have been pondering if the microbiome of plants is due to nature or nurture. Research at Stockholm University, published in Environmental Microbiology, showed that oak acorns contain a large diversity of microbes, and that oak seedlings inherit their microbiome from these acorns. The microorganisms found on the seed are often valuable for the plant, promoting its growth and protecting it against certain diseases. Each plant species harbours a distinct microbial community. (2021-01-21)

Evolution in a test tube: these bacteria survive on deadly copper surfaces
The descendants of regular wild-type bacteria can evolve to survive for a long time on metallic copper surfaces that would usually kill them within a few minutes. An international research team led by Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology was able to produce these tiny survivalists in the lab and has been able to study them more closely. The team reports on its findings in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. (2021-01-13)

Discovery pinpoints new therapeutic target for atopic dermatitis
Researchers from Trinity College Dublin have discovered a key mechanism underlying bacterial skin colonisation in atopic dermatitis, which affects millions around the globe. By identifying a major mechanism through which Staphylococcus aureus binds to the skin of patients with AD the team has opened the possibility of targeting this pathway as a therapeutic option in AD. (2021-01-11)

How 'Iron Man' bacteria could help protect the environment
In a new study, researchers show that microbes are capable of an incredible feat that could help reclaim a valuable natural resource and soak up toxic pollutants. (2021-01-08)

In changing oceans, sea stars may be 'drowning'
New Cornell University-led research suggests that starfish, victims of sea star wasting disease (SSWD), may actually be in respiratory distress - literally 'drowning' in their own environment - as elevated microbial activity derived from nearby organic matter and warm ocean temperatures rob the creatures of their ability to breathe. (2021-01-06)

Bacteriophage has important role in agriculture and aquaculture
Crop plants and animals can be infected by bacterial pathogens that reduce yield, cause food wastage, and carry human pathogens that spread disease on consumption. Bacteriophage can play an important role in microbial control (2021-01-04)

Surveillance of antimicrobial resistance could be more challenging outside of the EU
In a new policy report from the Microbiology Society, experts from around the UK explain the desperate need for long-term and ambitious funding for surveillance and research into antimicrobial resistance (AMR). (2020-12-21)

Corona: How the virus interacts with cells
Scientists from W├╝rzburg and the US have charted the first global atlas of direct interactions between SARS-CoV-2 RNA and human host cells. This may provide a starting point for novel treatments. (2020-12-21)

An atlas of S. pneumoniae and host gene expression during colonization and disease
The bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae colonizes the nasopharynx and can cause pneumonia. Then, it can spread to the bloodstream and cause organ damage. To understand how this pathogen adapts to different locations in the body, and also how the host responds to the microbe, researchers have measured bacterial and host gene expression at five different sites in a mouse model -- the nasopharynx, lungs, blood, heart and kidneys -- using three genetically different strains of S. pneumoniae. (2020-12-16)

Proteins enable crop-infecting fungi to 'smell' food
New UC Riverside research shows the same proteins that enable human senses such as smell also allow certain fungi to sense something they can eat. (2020-12-15)

Study shows endothelial cell targeting could help fight Covid-19 symptoms
For Covid-19 patients with serious lung disease, targeting endothelial cells -cells that comprise the blood vessel wall which regulate oxygen exchange between airways and the bloodstream- may be a novel approach restoring normal lung function. (2020-12-14)

Scientists shed new light on how lung bacteria defend against pneumonia
New insight on how bacteria in the lungs protect against invading pathogens has been published today in the open-access eLife journal. (2020-12-08)

Repurposed mouse model sheds light on loss of smell in COVID-19
A repurposed mouse model can develop symptoms of both severe COVID-19 (lung damage, blood clots, abnormal blood vessels, and death) and also of milder disease, including loss of the sense of smell, according to a recent University of Iowa study published in Nature. (2020-12-01)

ASM journals build mechanisms to promote gender equity
ASM journal editors and staff seek to improve gender equity after analysis shows that women are not only underrepresented but receive more negative outcomes. A new analysis of 80,000 manuscript submissions will guide new mechanisms to promote gender equity in the publishing process. (2020-12-01)

Experimental vaccine for deadly tickborne virus effective in cynomolgus macaques
An experimental vaccine developed in Europe to prevent infection by Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (CCHFV) has protected cynomolgus macaques in a new collaborative study from National Institutes of Health scientists. The study, published in Nature Microbiology, comes about three years after the same research group developed the macaque model for CCHFV. No specific treatments or vaccines for CCHFV exist. (2020-11-30)

Lung-on-chip provides new insight on body's response to early tuberculosis infection
Scientists have developed a lung-on-chip model to study how the body responds to early tuberculosis (TB) infection, according to findings published today in eLife. (2020-11-24)

MMR vaccine could protect against COVID-19
The measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine has been theorized to provide protection against COVID-19. In a new study published in mBio, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology, researchers provide further proof of this by showing that mumps IgG titers, or levels of IgG antibody, are inversely correlated with severity in recovered COVID-19 patients previously vaccinated with the MMR II vaccine produced by Merck (2020-11-20)

Gut microbiome manipulation could result from virus discovery
Scientists have discovered how a common virus in the human gut infects and takes over bacterial cells - a finding that could be used to control the composition of the gut microbiome, which is important for human health. The Rutgers co-authored research, which could aid efforts to engineer beneficial bacteria that produce medicines and fuels and clean up pollutants, is published in the journal Nature. (2020-11-18)

Researchers discover enzyme suppressing immune response to viral infections
Viruses such as HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C evade or disrupt the immune system to create persistent infections. These viruses remain a serious health threat, but researchers from the University of Missouri School of Medicine have discovered how an enzyme that regulates several cellular processes might be a key target to preventing viruses from disarming the human immune response. (2020-11-10)

phyloFlash: New software for fast and easy analysis of environmental microbes
Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen are developing a user-friendly method to reconstruct and analyze SSU rRNA from raw metagenome data. (2020-11-06)

Transparent soil-like substances provide window on soil ecology
By using two different transparent soil substitutes, scientists have shown that soil bacteria rely on fungi to help them survive dry periods, says a study published today in eLife. (2020-11-03)

How the immune system remembers viruses
For a person to acquire immunity to a disease, T cells must develop into memory cells after contact with the pathogen. Until now, the number of cells that do this was believed to depend above all on the magnitude of the initial immune response. A team of researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has now called this into question. (2020-11-02)

Washing hands and Halloween candy can mitigate COVID-19 contamination risks
New research shows that COVID-19 exposure risk from contaminated candy could be successfully mitigated both by washing hands and washing candy using a simple at-home method. A team of researchers published this work today in mSystems, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology. (2020-10-30)

Drug resistance linked to antibiotic use and patient transfers in hospitals
Understanding the role of antibiotic use patterns and patient transfers in the emergence of drug-resistant microbes is essential to crafting effective prevention strategies, suggests a study published today in eLife. (2020-10-27)

Study reveals differences in malaria clearance between males and females
Females are able to clear asymptomatic malaria infections at a faster rate than their male counterparts, says a study published today in eLife. (2020-10-27)

Tracking the SARS-CoV-2 virus with genome sequencing
Dirk Dittmer, PhD, professor of microbiology and immunology at the UNC School of Medicine, is tracking the virus that causes COVID-19 by sequencing the genome of virus samples collected from diagnostic testing. Using next generation sequencing on SARS-CoV-2 will help accurately diagnose the novel coronavirus, identify mutations and track its history. (2020-10-21)

Does science have a plastic problem? Microbiologists take steps to reducing plastic waste
A research group based at the University of Edinburgh's Roslin Institute, developed an approach to reduce plastic waste produced by their lab. They have shared their approach in the journal Access Microbiology, with the hope that other labs will follow suit. (2020-10-15)

Research demonstrates microbiome transmissibility in perennial ryegrass
Tannenbaum's most surprising discovery? Finding a stable bacterial microbiome within surface-sterilized ryegrass seeds that almost disappears when the plant matures but returns in a new generation of seed. (2020-10-14)

Detecting SARS-CoV-2 in the environment
Researchers have outlined an approach to characterize and develop an effective environmental monitoring methodology for SARS CoV-2 virus, that can be used to better understand viral persistence in built environments. The investigators from 7 institutions published their research this week in mSystems, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology. (2020-10-07)

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