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Moderna's mRNA vaccine passes important first hurdle.
Many of you probably already heard that the Moderna vaccine raised a strong immune response in all participants...
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Taking care of a family member, caregiving, does not impact your health
In the U.S. it is estimated that at least 17 million people care for loved ones with significant health...
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A review of vaccine efforts against SARS-CoV-2
The Journal of Virology published a review by Moore and Klasse that summarizes the herculean efforts...
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What does being immune to an infectious disease mean?
There is a ton of talk, justifiably so, about developing immunity to SARS-CoV-2, and whether is it long-lasting?...
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Latest News on COVID-19
Hydroxychloroquine The NIH halted trials of hydroxychloroquine. While the drug did not show significant...
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Evolution On the Inside Track: How Viruses in Gut Bacteria Change Over Time

  The world is surrounded by microbes that interact with one another competitively or symbiotically, creating a dynamic environment. These interactions occur everywhere, even in our own digestive system. Microbes swarm around the digestive tracts and a myriad of viruses modify key characteristics in bacteria, molding the bacterial population and metabolism. A study led by Fredric D. Bushman, a microbiology professor at University of Pennsylvania, looked at interactions between virus and bacteria i...

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Viruses in both eukaryotes and archaea, hijacking their way to success

  A recent study led by biologists from Indian University and Montana State University has found a connection between viruses that infect eukaryotes and viruses that infect archaea growing in volcanic springs (article).  Viruses like HIV and Ebola that infect eukaryotic cells and the virus Sulfolobus turreted icosahedral virus (STIV) that infects Sulfolobus sofataricus, an archaea found in volcanic springs, share a common feature; they both must hijack the same set of proteins found in their...

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Alterations of the Human Genome as a Result of Cholera

  Cholera is a deadly disease that is present in many third world countries, including Bangladesh and India.  The disease has been infecting people for thousands of years, meaning it is more likely to be causing evolutionary changes in humans, compared to newly emerged diseases.   Sure enough, researchers from Massachusetts and Bangladesh have found that the human genome has evolved in people who are more likely to contract cholera.  Regina LaRocque, an infectious disea...

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Bacteriophages Batteling Against Bacterial Infections

  The human digestive system is home to many microbes that are beneficial to our health; they help our systems battle harmful microbes and help us digest our food. When taking antibiotics to stop bacterial infections, we take the risk of killing the good bacteria and leaving behind the bacteria that are harmful. Currently in England and Wales there is an ongoing battle with a harmful bacterium, C. difficile. C. difficile, which causes infections found mostly in the hospital setting infec...

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Using Bacteriophages to Fight Bacterial Infections

  Clostridium difficile is the leading cause of hospital infections in England and Wales, and treating these infections is becoming more difficult as the causative organism becomes more resistant to antibiotics.  Microbiologists are experimenting with the use of bacteriophages, viruses that infect bacteria, as a way to help control these bacterial infections despite antibiotic resistance. 

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Bacterial Changes In The Gut May Trigger Disease In Humans

  Bacteria located within the human gut have been studied for years. In 2012, Mayo Clinic in Minnesota has classified them as bacteria that may control or alter the onset and progression of autoimmune diseases.  Regulating the human immune system and autoimmune diseases have been found to start in the gut. Bacteria that flourish within the mammalian stomach and intestines have been found to alter the host's immune system. Researchers believe that maintaining the balance of th...

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Biogeographical distribution and diversity of microbes in methane hydrate-bearing deep marine sediments on the Pacific Ocean Margin

  The depths of the Oceans on this world are unexplored territory by humans. Until recently. Scientists have created equipment that can withstand the pressure of the depth of the sea to begin exploring the world unseen by many land-bound eyes. Little did we know there was an underwater land teeming with life, especially microbial life. This article discusses the microbial communities that may be contributors to the methane levels found in our ocean sediments. The Prokaryotic biomass f...

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Treated mice infected with Clostridium difficile

  In the article “ Using Gut Bacteria to Fight Diarrhea”, microbiologist Trevor Lawley of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and his colleagues examined Clostridium difficile infection in mice.  In humans, C. difficile is a significant pathogen in hostpitals and nursing homes, causing nearly 336,000 infections and 14,000 deaths a year in the United States.  Clostridium difficile is an anaerobic, gram-positive bacterium that is the majo...

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Effect of diet on the human gut micro biome.

  For decades, we have known that proper nutrition is essential for human health, but recent studies have demonstrated that variations in composition and operations of the human gut microbiome can influence the host energy metabolic function, host energy expenditure, and ultimately the nutritional value of food. Knowing this, it would be logical to ask how we may be able to further promote our health by improving ecological health of the microbial communities in our gut. Turnbaugh PJ, et al. set o...

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The Impact of the Gut Microbiota on Human Health: An Integrative View

  Over the last decade there has been an exponential growth in the amount of individuals that are being diagnosed with diseases, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Crohn's Disease, and food allergies, which are a result of the consequences from the amount and type of microbiota contained within the gastrointestinal tract.  There are also some diseases; Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD), many autoimmune disorders, and rheumatoid arthritis...

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