A soybean-shaped bacterium called Caulobacter crescentus, found in freshwater and seawater, makes one of the strongest adhesives in the world. Now high-resolution video microscopy is shedding light on how it can carefully use this adhesive, like a super-precise application of superglue, to stick on surfaces in wet environments.
News from the field of HIV research has been pretty promising of late — this summer, we heard good news that antiretroviral treatment is superbly effective, at least when it's used correctly. And thanks to some video gamers, scientists' understanding of proteins involved in HIV keeps getting better. Now researchers have another tool in their arsenal: Stripping the virus itself of its ability to trick the human immune system.
HIV infection sends the immune system into overdrive and eventually exhausts it, which is what leads to AIDS. But removing cholesterol from HIV seems to cripple the virus' ability to over-activate part of the immune system, so it could potentially lead to a vaccine that lets the adaptive immune system attack and destroy the virus — just as it would if HIV was any other pathogen.
For the first time, scientists have discovered evidence of a human DNA fragment in the genome of bacteria, shedding light on why this particular bug is so adept at surviving in human hosts. The bacteria in question is Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes gonorrhea.
Researchers in Germany have created bandages that turn purple at the first sign of infection.
A new wound dressing, developed at the Fraunhofer Research Institution for Modular Solid State Technologies EMFT in Munich, includes a special dye that reacts to different pH values.
Good morning, readers. Settled in, ready to take on the day? Great, we hope you have a good one. Also, FYI, a new mutation that makes bacteria resistant to pretty much every antibiotic known to man has become increasingly prevalent on the Indian subcontinent and has made the leap to both the UK and the United States, according to a new report in the Lancet. Because there's nothing modern medical science can do to stop it, the NDM-1 "superbug" may spread globally. Anyhow, enjoy your Thursday.
Move over MRSA; a new battery of Gram-negative bacteria are quietly carving out big names for themselves, killing thousands of hospital patients each year as doctors look on with few effective tools to fight them. What’s worse, though these resistant strains are spreading, there are no effective antibacterial drugs coming down the pipeline, creating a gap between the evolution of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and our ability to fend them off.
Unlike antibiotics, which kill many different types of bacteria, antiviral drugs for the most part need to target individual, specific viruses. A drug that attacks a multitude of viruses -- an antibiotic for viruses, effectively -- would be a significant boon for medicine. And a group of researchers led by UCLA scientists just may have discovered exactly that.