One of the oldest and most widely used antibiotics, penicillin, attacks enzymes that build the bacterial cell wall. Researchers have now shown that penicillin and its variants also set in motion a toxic malfunctioning of the cell's wall-building machinery, dooming the cell to a futile cycle of building and then immediately destroying that wall.
Iain Haysom's insight:
Great new data showing how it is not just blocking of peptidoglycan cross-linking by penicillin that causes bacterial cell death.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has today published the cumulative results from the first two quarters of its year-long survey of campylobacter on fresh chickens. Tackling campylobacter is the FSA’s number one food safety priority and it is spearheading a campaign to bring together the whole food chain to tackle the problem.
One of the world's most prolific bacteria, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, manages to afflict humans, animals and even plants by way of a mechanism not before seen in any infectious microorganism -- a sense of touch.
by Nanne Nanninga | As will be argued below the present definition of a prokaryote is highly unsatisfactory. To give an example: a prokaryote is "a cell or organism lacking a nucleus and other membrane-enclose organelles, usually having its DNA in a single circular molecule". This seems a summary of the original definition of...
British families throw away about seven million tonnes of food and drink every year, enough to fill Wembley stadium to the brim. Most of it is beyond its sell-by date, but how much could be safely eaten, asks Michael Mosley.
Plastic is well-known for sticking around in the environment for years without breaking down, contributing significantly to litter and landfills. But scientists have now discovered that bacteria from the guts of a worm known to munch on food packaging can degrade polyethylene, the most common plastic.The finding could lead to new ways to help get rid of the otherwise persistent waste, the scientists say.
It seems that any time a holiday comes around in the US, the press starts to ramp up the writing of stories about evil microbes that are lurking all around us. And Halloween appears to be no exception. I am now planning on referring to this attitude as "microbophobia" rather than "germophobia" because to some "germ" implies pathogen and many of these stories fan the flames of fear about any kind of microbe not just pathogens.