Designer Probiotic Treatment for Cancer Immunotherapy

Columbia Engineers have engineered probiotics to safely deliver immunotherapies within tumors, including nanobodies against two proven therapeutic targets—PD-L1 and CTLA-4. Continuously released by bacteria, the drugs continue to attack the tumor after just one dose, facilitating an immune response resulting in tumor regression. The versatile probiotic platform can also be used to deliver multiple immunotherapies simultaneously, enabling the release of effective therapeutic combinations within the tumor for more difficult-to-treat cancers like colorectal cancer.

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Study: Diet Makes a Difference in Fight Against Hospital-Acquired Infection

Popular diets low in carbs and high in fat and protein might be good for the waistline, but a new UNLV study shows that just the opposite may help to alleviate the hospital-acquired infection Clostridioides difficile. The results appeared in a study published Feb. 11 in mSystems, an open access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

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New Portable Tool Analyzes Microbes in the Environment

Imagine a device that could swiftly analyze microbes in oceans and other aquatic environments, revealing the health of these organisms – too tiny to be seen by the naked eye – and their response to threats to their ecosystems. Rutgers researchers have created just such a tool, a portable device that could be used to assess microbes, screen for antibiotic-resistant bacteria and analyze algae that live in coral reefs. Their work is published in the journal Scientific Reports.

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‘Are Noncommunicable Diseases Communicable?’ Rutgers Experts Available to Discuss Paper in Science Today

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Delivering TB Vaccine Intravenously Dramatically Improves Potency, Study Shows

Worldwide, more people die from tuberculosis than any other infectious disease, even though the vast majority were vaccinated. The vaccine just isn’t that reliable. But a new Nature study finds that simply changing the way the vaccine is administered could dramatically boost its protective power.

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Trial Suggests Babies in Intensive Care Can be Better Protected From Parental Bacteria

For sick or prematurely born babies spending their first days of life in a hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), the soothing voice and gentle touch of a loving parent can have a tremendous impact toward a positive outcome — that is, unless mom or dad’s visit leaves the infant with something extra: a dangerous bacterial infection.

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Why It Matters: Prescription for Disaster

Bacteria are becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics. A major cause is their overuse in both humans and animals. At the same time, a lack of financial incentives is setting back efforts to discover new classes of antibiotics. The problem is both global and local, and without new initiatives, many common medical conditions could become deadly once again.

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