Drug-resistant bacteria lurk in sewer biofilms

The biofilms that cling to sewer walls often contain harmful, antibiotic-resistant bacteria and can withstand standard treatment to disinfect sewers, research finds.

Todd Bates-Rutgers • futurity
July 6, 2020 ~4 min

Tags: bacteria drug-resistance health-and-medicine biofilms wastewater-treatment

How to manage plant pests and diseases in your victory garden

The COVID-19 pandemic has boosted interest in home gardening. Three scientists who garden explain some basic methods for controlling common insects and microbes that can spoil your crop.

Carolee Bull, Professor of Plant Pathology and Systematic Bacteriology, Pennsylvania State University • conversation
July 2, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: bacteria covid-19 insects soil plants fungi viruses integrated-pest-management gardening nematodes weeds land-grant-universities plant-health victory-garden


We caught bacteria from the most pristine air on earth to help solve a climate modeling mystery

Climate models have been overestimating how much sunlight hits the Southern Ocean. This is because the clouds there are different from clouds anywhere else. Bacterial DNA helped us understand why.

Thomas Hill, Research Scientist, Colorado State University • conversation
June 19, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: climate bacteria antarctica climate-models atmospheric-science weather clouds southern-ocean

How legume ‘fertilizer factories’ make ammonium

Mapping the mechanism that lets legumes make their own ammonium fertilizer could help make agriculture more sustainable.

Fabio Bergamin-ETH Zurich • futurity
June 3, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: bacteria agriculture plants nitrogen earth-and-environment roots fertilizer

Natural antibiotic resists ‘superbugs’

A newly discovered natural antibiotic called teixobactin may be a perfect weapon to fight drug-resistant superbugs like MRSA.

Cheryl Critchley-Melbourne • futurity
June 3, 2020 ~4 min

Tags: bacteria covid-19 antibiotics drug-resistance health-and-medicine mrsa

New research explores horizontal gene transfer

Cassandra Extavour and Leo Blondel provide the strongest suggestive evidence yet that at least part of a specific gene came from bacterial genomes.

Peter Reuell • harvard
June 2, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: science-technology bacteria genes faculty-of-arts-and-sciences fas harvard peter-reuell cassandra-extavour horizontal-gene-transfer gene blondel extavour gene-transfer germ-cells leo-blondel osk-domain oskar

Most common ocean organisms host virus in DNA

A tiny jelly-bean shaped organism—the most common in the ocean—may thrive because of an ability to host viruses in its DNA.

Hannah Hickey-UW • futurity
June 1, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: dna bacteria viruses oceans earth-and-environment

Compounds in Brazilian berries can ‘disarm’ MRSA

Compounds inside berries from the Brazilian peppertree can keep MRSA from making the toxins it uses to damage tissues, researchers say.

Carol Clark-Emory • futurity
May 26, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: bacteria antibiotics plants drug-resistance health-and-medicine

Blue light could be the ‘next frontier’ in superbug fight

A new, blue light-based weapon called photolysis, may be key in the fight against antibiotic-resistant pathogens like MRSA.

Boston University • futurity
May 26, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: bacteria drug-resistance light science-and-technology health-and-medicine mrsa superbugs

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