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Powerful HIV Antibodies May Require Assist from Second Antibody to Develop

July 25, 2014 1:40 pm | News | Comments

One strategy for developing a highly effective HIV vaccine is to learn how some HIV-infected people naturally develop antibodies that can stop a high percentage of global HIV strains from infecting human cells in the laboratory. These so-called broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) develop too late to help infected people overcome the virus.

China Lifts Quarantine in Plague City

July 24, 2014 1:20 am | News | Comments

A nine-day quarantine imposed on parts of a northern Chinese city where a man there died of...

Head of Troubled CDC Anthrax Lab Resigns

July 23, 2014 1:20 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Health officials say that the head of the government lab which potentially exposed workers to...

Parts of Chinese City Sealed for Bubonic Plague

July 22, 2014 11:20 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Parts of a northern Chinese city have been quarantined after state media said a man there died...

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Potential New Flu Drugs Target Immune Response, Not Virus

July 22, 2014 2:59 pm | News | Comments

The seriousness of disease often results from the strength of immune response, rather than with the virus, itself. Turning down that response, rather than attacking the virus, might be a better way to reduce that severity. Researchers have taken the first step in doing that for the H7N9 influenza, and their work has led to identification of six potential therapeutics for this highly virulent strain.

Bacteria Swim with Bodies and Flagella

July 22, 2014 2:34 pm | News | Comments

Many bacteria swim using flagella, corkscrew-like appendages that push or pull bacterial cells like propellers. It had been assumed that the flagella do all the work during swimming, while the rest of the cell body is just along for the ride. But new research shows that in at least one species, the cell body is actively carving out a helical trajectory through the water that produces thrust and contributes to the organism's ability to swim.

Researchers Successfully Eliminate the HIV Virus from Cultured Human Cells

July 22, 2014 1:49 pm | Videos | Comments

The HIV-1 virus has proved to be tenacious, inserting its genome permanently into its victims' DNA, forcing patients to take a lifelong drug regimen to control the virus and prevent a fresh attack. Now, a team of Temple University School of Medicine researchers has designed a way to snip out the integrated HIV-1 genes for good.

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New Findings Show Early Seeding of HIV Viral Reservoir

July 21, 2014 11:13 am | News | Comments

A research team has demonstrated that the viral reservoir of HIV-1 infection is established strikingly early after intrarectal simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infection of rhesus monkeys and before detectable viremia.         

Managing Ecosystems via Genomics

July 18, 2014 2:11 pm | News | Comments

A cross-disciplinary team is calling for public discussion about a potential new way to solve longstanding global ecological problems by using an emerging technology called “gene drives.” The advance could potentially lead to powerful new ways of combating malaria and other insect-borne diseases.

Scientists Find Way to Trap, Kill Malaria Parasite

July 17, 2014 10:20 am | News | Comments

Scientists may be able to entomb the malaria parasite in a prison of its own making, researchers at are reporting. The malaria parasite is among the world’s deadliest pathogens.                     

300 Vials Labeled Influenza, Dengue Found at Lab

July 16, 2014 6:20 pm | by Matthew Perrone - AP Health Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

The same federal scientist who recently found forgotten samples of smallpox at a federal lab also uncovered over 300 additional vials, many bearing the names of highly contagious viruses and bacteria.               

Team Studies Immune Response of Asian Elephants Infected with a Human Disease

July 16, 2014 1:51 pm | News | Comments

Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the organism that causes tuberculosis in humans, also afflicts Asian elephants. Diagnosing and treating elephants with TB is a challenge, however, as little is known about how their immune systems respond to the infection. A new study begins to address this knowledge gap, and offers new tools for detecting and monitoring TB in captive elephants.

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Protein's 'Hands' Enable Bacteria to Establish Infection

July 16, 2014 10:01 am | News | Comments

When it comes to infecting humans and animals, bacteria need a helping hand. Biochemists have found the helping hand: groups of tiny protein loops on the surface of cells.                       

When Good Gut Bacteria Get Sick

July 14, 2014 11:46 am | News | Comments

Being sick due to an infection can make us feel lousy. But what must the ecosystem of bacteria, or microbiota, colonizing our guts be going through when hit with infection? A new study has utilized unique computational models to show how infection can affect bacteria that naturally live in our intestines.

Bacterial Respiratory Tract Colonization Prior to Catching the Flu May Protect Against Severe Illness

July 11, 2014 1:10 pm | News | Comments

Many studies have shown that more severe illness and even death are likely to result if you develop a secondary respiratory infection after developing influenza. Now, however, a team of researchers based at The Wistar Institute has determined that if you reverse the order of infection, the bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae (often called pneumococcus) may actually protect against a bad case of the flu.

Mouse Study: Natural Birth May Strengthen the Immune System

July 11, 2014 12:54 pm | News | Comments

Health researchers from the University of Copenhagen have uncovered new knowledge about the immune system in a mouse study, which indicates that natural birth improves the immune system of the pups. A number of studies suggest that children delivered by Caesarean section have a different intestinal flora than children delivered by natural birth. But it is still unknown why this is the case and what it means for the immune system.

Girl Hoped to Have Been Cured of HIV Has Relapsed

July 11, 2014 8:30 am | by Marilynn Marchione - AP Chief Medical Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

A Mississippi girl born with the AIDS virus and in remission for years despite stopping treatment now shows signs that she still harbors HIV — and therefore is not cured.                       

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Viral Evasion: How Measles, Nipah Elude Detection

July 9, 2014 4:39 pm | News | Comments

Scientists have discovered that measles and Nipah viruses manipulate the phosphorylation state of the immune sensor MDA5, keeping it inactive while the virus enters cells and replicates.                   

Bacteria Hijack Plentiful Iron Supply Source to Flourish

July 9, 2014 4:21 pm | News | Comments

In an era of increasing concern about the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant illness, researchers have identified a promising new pathway to disabling disease: blocking bacteria’s access to iron in the body.             

Not at Home on the Range

July 9, 2014 3:44 pm | News | Comments

As climate change shifts the geographic ranges in which animals can be found, concern mounts over the effect it has on their parasites. Does an increased range for a host mean new territory for its parasites as well? Not necessarily, says a team of UC Santa Barbara scientists.  

When Faced With Some Sugars, Bacteria Can Be Picky Eaters

July 9, 2014 12:18 pm | News | Comments

Researchers from North Carolina State University and the University of Minnesota have found for the first time that genetically identical strains of bacteria can respond very differently to the presence of sugars and other organic molecules in the environment, with some individual bacteria devouring the sugars and others ignoring it.

Tiny DNA Pyramids Enter Bacteria Easily and Deliver a Deadly Payload

July 9, 2014 11:53 am | News | Comments

Bacterial infections usually announce themselves with pain and fever but often can be defeated with antibiotics—and then there are those that are sneaky and hard to beat. Now, scientists have built a new weapon against such pathogens in the form of tiny DNA pyramids. Their study found the nanopyramids can flag bacteria and kill more of them than medicine alone.

Bioscience Technology This Week #1: Tick Bites Pack Double Punch

July 9, 2014 11:24 am | Videos | Comments

On this episode of Bioscience Technology This Week, Editor-in-Chief Rob Fee reports on the possible double-punch of tick bites and how to control and undo years of heart damage.                   

Forgotten Vials of Smallpox Found in Storage Room

July 9, 2014 8:30 am | by Mike Stobbe, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

A government scientist cleaning out an old storage room at a research center near Washington made a startling discovery last week- decades-old vials of smallpox packed away and forgotten in a cardboard box.             

AIDS Research Team Loses $1.38M Grant

July 9, 2014 8:30 am | by David Pitt | News | Comments

An AIDS research team at Iowa State University will not get the final $1.38 million payment of a National Institutes of Health five-year grant after a team member admitted last year to faking research results.            

Mechanism Preventing Lethal Bacteria from Causing Invasive Disease Revealed

July 8, 2014 1:31 pm | News | Comments

An important development in understanding how the bacterium that causes pneumonia, meningitis and septicaemia remains harmlessly in the nose and throat has been discovered at the University of Liverpool’s Institute of Infection and Global Health.

Recalled Chobani Contained Highly Pathogenic Mold

July 8, 2014 11:00 am | News | Comments

Samples isolated from Chobani yogurt that was voluntarily recalled in September 2013 have been found to contain the most virulent form of a fungus called Mucor circinelloides, which is associated with infections in immune-compromised people.   

Unsuspected Aspect of Immune Regulation Revealed

July 1, 2014 11:35 am | News | Comments

A discovery by Australian immunologists uncovered an additional role for antibody-making ‘B cells.’ The finding shows that B cells also participate in the development of ‘regulatory T cells.’ Until now, the only non-thymic cells known to educate the regulators were dendritic cells, which travel to the thymus to deliver ‘antigen’, samples of substances toxic to the body. We now know that B cells can do the same thing.

Bacteria Can Evolve a Biological Timer to Survive Antibiotic Treatments

June 30, 2014 11:52 am | News | Comments

The ability of microorganisms to overcome antibiotic treatments is one of the top concerns of modern medicine. The effectiveness of many antibiotics has been reduced by bacteria's ability to rapidly evolve and develop strategies to resist antibiotics. Bacteria achieve this by specific mechanisms that are tailored to the molecular structure or function of a particular antibiotic.

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