Omnitrophota are nano-sized bacteria first discovered 25 years ago. Though common in many environments around the world, until now they’ve been poorly understood. An international research team produced the first large-scale analysis of Omnitrophota genomes, uncovering new details about their biology and behavior. The team’s findings are reported in the March 16 issue of the journal Nature Microbiology.
Healthy gut bacteria can help fight cancer in other parts of the body, UTSW researchers find
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have discovered how healthy bacteria can escape the intestine, travel to lymph nodes and cancerous tumors elsewhere in the body, and boost the effectiveness of certain immunotherapy drugs. The findings, published in Science Immunology, shed light on why antibiotics can weaken the effect of immunotherapies and could lead to new cancer treatments.
Your Gut’s Microbiome, On a Chip
In APL Bioengineering, researchers describe how gut-on-a-chip devices can bridge lab models and human biology. Modeling the microbiome is particularly difficult because of its unique environmental conditions, but through creative design, gut-on-a-chip devices can simulate many of these properties, such as the gut’s anaerobic atmosphere, fluid flow, and pulses of contraction/relaxation. Growing intestinal cells in this environment means that they more closely resemble human biology compared to standard laboratory cell cultures.
First Stem Cells From a Bat Species Known to Harbor SARS-CoV-2 Could Shed Light on Virus Survival and Molecular Adaptability
Researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai have generated the first induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from bats, gaining valuable insights into the close relationship between bats and viruses.
Argonne researchers share in Chicago Innovation Award for COVID wastewater testing
Argonne’s expertise in biosafety, genetic sequencing and epidemiology help public health officials track which COVID variants are present in Illinois and monitor variants of concern.
Beyond the average cell
Models based on an average cell are useful, but they may not accurately describe how individual cells really work. New possibilities opened up with the advent of single-cell live imaging technologies. Now it is possible to peer into the lives of individual cells. In a new paper in PLOS Genetics, a team of biologists and physicists from Washington University in St. Louis and Purdue University used actual single-cell data to create an updated framework for understanding the relationship between cell growth, DNA replication and division in a bacterial system.
Prion of yeasts can help to understand the characteristics of the development of neurodegenerative diseases
Scientists from the Federal Research Centre “Fundamentals of Biotechnology” of the Russian Academy of Sciences made the overall review of the characteristics of yeast prions – special protein structures, that are able to multiply steadily and be inherited by several generations of yeast.
Microbial miners could help humans colonize the moon and Mars
The biochemical process by which cyanobacteria acquire nutrients from rocks in Chile’s Atacama Desert has inspired engineers at the University of California, Irvine to think of new ways microbes might help humans build colonies on the moon and Mars.
UT Southwestern scientists among top 1% of highly cited researchers across the globe
More than 20 UT Southwestern Medical Center scientists are among the 2022 Highly Cited Researchers listed in the top 1% of researchers from across the globe
James McKinlay : Then and Now / 2012 Early Career Award Winner
James McKinlay is an associate professor of biology at Indiana University. His group used genetics, analytical chemistry, and computational modeling to identify factors that determine hydrogen gas production levels. More broadly, we identified factors that govern cooperative relationships between microbes.
Methane-Eating ‘Borgs’ Have Been Assimilating Earth’s Microbes
In Star Trek, the Borg are a ruthless, hive-minded collective that assimilate other beings with the intent of taking over the galaxy. Here on nonfictional planet Earth, Borgs are DNA packages that could help humans fight climate change.
ISU lab aims to repair severed nerves, foster undergraduate research
Undergraduate students at ISU are part of a research team testing different structures that could be used to help patients recover from traumatic nerve injuries.
Scientists Unveil New System for Naming Majority of the World’s Microorganisms
In an article published Sept. 19 in the journal Nature Microbiology, a team of scientists present a new system, the SeqCode, and a corresponding registration portal that could help microbiologists effectively categorize and communicate about the massive number of identified yet uncultivated single-celled microorganisms known as prokaryotes.
Study uncovers differences in saliva bacteria of students with recent suicidal thoughts
Adding to a growing body of research on mental health and the human microbiome, a new study compared the bacteria in the saliva of students with and without recent thoughts of suicide, called suicidal ideation
Vircell launches Amplirun® Monkeypox Virus DNA Control, an independent molecular control to combat the current outbreak
Vircell, leading provider of independent external run controls for nucleic acid testing, announces the launch of a new independent molecular control which will help laboratories all over the world to combat the current outbreak
Ancient microbes may help us find extraterrestrial life forms
Using light-capturing proteins in living microbes, scientists have reconstructed what life was like for some of Earth’s earliest organisms. These efforts could help us recognize signs of life on other planets, whose atmospheres may more closely resemble our pre-oxygen planet.
Giant Bacteria Found in Guadeloupe Mangroves Challenge Traditional Concepts
In Science, researchers describe a “’macro’ microbe” – a giant filamentous bacterium composed of a single cell discovered in the mangroves of Guadeloupe. Using various microscopy techniques, the team also observed novel, membrane-bound compartments that contain DNA clusters dubbed “pepins.”
Watching Plant Roots Grow in a Transparent Simulated Soil
The rhizosphere, the underground ecological zone between and around plant roots, is difficult to study. Scientists have now developed a rhizosphere-on-a-chip with a transparent simulated soil structure that allows researchers to view how roots grow over time through the pores in the soil. Paired with specialized mass spectrometry techniques, scientist can also use the rhizosphere-on-a-chip to map the location of root-exuded molecules, like amino acids, without hurting the plant.
A New Approach Produces a 90-Fold Increase in Known Viral Taxa
Viruses play an essential role in regulating microbiomes. However, the use of metagenomics and metatranscriptomics have produced taxonomies of only a tiny proportion of the world’s viruses. In this study, researchers used a novel algorithm to compare and incorporate 715,672 metagenome viruses from environmental samples around the world. This expands the viral taxa available to researchers from about 8,000 to 723,672. The scientists then used the data to examine samples from two Populus tree genotypes.
Low levels of high-risk salmonella evade traditional methods of detection
Poultry is responsible for more than one out of every five cases of salmonella infection in the U.S. But traditional methods of testing the chicken you grab off the grocery shelf may not be enough to detect all strains of the bacteria, according to new research from the University of Georgia.
Cleveland Clinic Appoints Ted Ross, Ph.D., as Global Director of Vaccine Development
Ted Ross, Ph.D., has been appointed Global Director of Vaccine Development at Cleveland Clinic.
In this newly created role, he will lead the development of novel vaccine platforms for a variety of infectious diseases, including influenza, HIV and COVID-19. A highly renowned scientist with expertise in virology, vaccines, immunology and microbiology, Dr. Ross’ research focuses on the design of new vaccines and the implementation of new vaccine trials.
The significance of all life can be left in traceable way: Freshwater pearl mussels
Freshwater pearl mussels are found in rivers in Japan.
Marine microbes swim towards their favorite food
Although invisible to us, every teaspoon of seawater contains more than a million marine bacteria.
This class of microbes is an underexploited source of new bioactive compounds
Demand for new kinds of antibiotics is surging, as drug-resistant and emerging infections are becoming an increasingly serious global health threat. Researchers are racing to reexamine certain microbes that serve as one of our most successful sources of therapeutics: the…
Predatory Bacteria, Eat Thy Neighbor
Ecologists know that adding more plant food that prey animals eat can also benefit predators. Scientists wanted to know if the same principles apply in bacterial food webs. They found that predatory bacteria grow faster and consume more resources than non-predators, and they use predatory behavior and physical features to hunt and feast on prey bacteria.
How climate change could impact algae in the global ocean
Global warming is likely to cause abrupt changes to important algal communities because of shifting biodiversity ‘break point’ boundaries in the oceans – according to research from the University of East Anglia and the Earlham Institute.
Fungal and Bacterial Biodeterioration of Outdoor Canvas Paintings: The Case of the Cloisters of Quito, Ecuador
The journal Critical Review In Eukaryotic Gene Expression has just published an interesting article entitled: “Fungal And Bacterial Biodeterioration Of Outdoor Canvas Paintings: The Case Of The Cloisters Of Quito, Ecuador.”
Food claiming to have ‘wild mushrooms’ rarely does
Harvesting wild mushrooms requires an expert eye, making products containing wild fungi expensive. Due to minimal food regulations, it’s nearly impossible to know what species are actually contained within. Sequencing revealed food products labeled with wild mushrooms mostly contained cultivated fungi and some mushrooms poisonous to humans.
Most of UC San Diego’s COVID-19 Cases Detected Early by Wastewater Screening
Part of UC San Diego’s Return to Learn program, wastewater screening helped prevent outbreaks by detecting 85 percent of cases early, allowing for timely testing, contact tracing and isolation.
Nitrogen Inputs in the Ancient Ocean
Nitrogen is vital for all forms of life¬: It is part of proteins, nucleic acids and other cell structures.
Newly Developed, Bioinspired Cell Delivery Vehicles
Nanocontainers can transport substances into cells where they can then take effect.
New research on the brain’s relay processes could guide treatment for certain brain disorders
New research shows cells gather more data than once believed inside the thal-amus, a relay station of sensory and motor abilities in the brain. That could change how medicine treats schizophrenia, epilepsy and other brain disorders.
Cell-analysis technique could combat tuberculosis
ITHACA, N.Y. – A new method that analyzes how individual immune cells react to the bacteria that cause tuberculosis could pave the way for new vaccine strategies against this deadly disease, and provide insights into fighting other infectious diseases around…
Interaction identified between SARS-CoV-2 and unusual RNA structures in human cells
Replication of SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, depends on a series of interactions between viral proteins and different cellular partners such as nucleic acids (DNA or RNA). Characterizing these interactions is crucial to elucidate the process of viral replication…
Parkinson’s disease: How lysosomes become a hub for the propagation of the pathology
Over the last few decades, neurodegenerative diseases became one of the top 10 global causes of death. Researchers worldwide are making a strong effort to understand neurodegenerative diseases pathogenesis, which is essential to develop efficient treatments against these incurable diseases.…
Global warming may limit spread of dengue fever, new research finds
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Infection with dengue virus makes mosquitoes more sensitive to warmer temperatures, according to new research led by Penn State researchers. The team also found that infection with the bacterium Wolbachia, which has recently been used to…
Tiny organisms shed big light on ocean nutrients
As the world warms, sweeping changes in marine nutrients seem like an expected consequence of increased ocean temperatures. However, the reality is more complicated. New research suggests that processes below the ocean surface may be controlling what is happening above.…
Fully booked at the bottom of the sea: There seems no room for new bacteria on sand grains
Bacteria on the sand on the ocean floor do not change between the seasons. Presumably, there is simply no room for change.
Microbes play role in corn ‘hybrid vigor’
The tiny organisms living in soil may have a greater effect on the yield and pest and disease resistance of crop plants grown in that soil than previously known. Researchers at North Carolina State University and the University of Kansas…
How does the structure of cytolysins influence their activity?
Although Enterococcus faecalis is usually an innocuous member of the bacterial community in the human gut, it can also cause several infections, including liver disorders. The bacteria produce cytolysins, which are molecules that destroy cells. In a new study, researchers…
Traditional Japanese food may hold building blocks of COVID-19 treatments
Natto, a fermented soybean dish often served for breakfast in Japan, originated at the turn of the last millennium but may hold an answer to a modern problem: COVID-19, according to a new study based on cell cultures. Long thought…
Is Bacterial Acidity a Key to Tackle Antimicrobial Resistance?
Decreasing bacterial acidity could help reduce antimicrobial resistance by eliminating bacteria that can survive being treated with antibiotics.
15,000-year-old viruses discovered in Tibetan glacier ice
Scientists who study glacier ice have found viruses nearly 15,000 years old in two ice samples taken from the Tibetan Plateau in China. Most of those viruses, which survived because they had remained frozen, are unlike any viruses that have been cataloged to date.
Mycoplasma mobile moves into overdrive: Twin motor modified from ATP synthase discovered
Scientists discover gliding machinery for Mycoplasma mobile to be a new structure that could share ancestry with ATP synthase
No IgA leads to intestinal inflammation in mice
Tokyo, Japan – While researchers have known for years that immunoglobulin A (IgA) is important for gut health, it has remained unclear exactly what role it plays in preventing infection and disease. But now, researchers from Japan have found that…
A simple compound to control complex gut microbes
Researchers at the RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences (IMS) have discovered that acetate, a major metabolite produced by some intestinal bacteria, is involved in regulating other intestinal bacteria. Specifically, experiments showed that acetate could trigger an immune response against…
Ocean microbes team up brilliantly to gather food when it’s scarce
WOODS HOLE, Mass. – What’s a hungry marine microbe to do when the pickings are slim? It must capture nutrients – nitrogen, phosphorus, or iron – to survive, yet in vast expanses of the ocean, nutrients are extremely scarce. And…
Add fatty acid to taste
New technology reveals single cancer cells have different appetites for fatty acids
A new avenue for fighting drug-resistant bacteria
Targeting an RNA sequence in pathogenic bacteria could make them more sensitive to antibiotics
Sperm migration in the genital tract: computer simulations identify factors for success
During mating in wildlife species, males transfer millions of sperm into the female genital tract. On the way to the egg cell the sperm have to pass through the genital tract. Very few of the sperm cells actually succeed in…