Microbes

  • Photo of Facilitating optogenetic control of plant growth by a microbial rhodopsin

    Facilitating optogenetic control of plant growth by a microbial rhodopsin

    It is almost ten years since the scientific journal Science called optogenetics the “breakthrough of the decade”. Put simply, the technique makes it possible to control the electrical activity of cells with pulses of light. With its help, scientists can gain new insights into the functioning of nerve cells, for example, and thus better understand neurological and psychiatric diseases such…

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  • Photo of The Great Yogurt Experiment – Test 2 Mesophilic Heirloom yogurt

    The Great Yogurt Experiment – Test 2 Mesophilic Heirloom yogurt

    Tasting the bacterial diversity and pH difference by using heirloom yogurt for microbiology teaching. I love the idea that invisible microbes can change their habitat so much we macroorganisms will pay attention and even help them! After all, people have maintained yogurt cultures for generations. Take for example the Heirloom yogurt from Culture for Health that I have been playing…

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  • Photo of Simulated fossils are more common in ancient rocks than real fossils

    Simulated fossils are more common in ancient rocks than real fossils

    When it comes to finding fossils of very ancient microbial life — whether on Earth or on other worlds, such as Mars — the odds are just not in our favor. Actual microbial life-forms are much less likely to become safely fossilized in rocks compared with nonbiological structures that happen to mimic their shapes, new research finds. The finding suggests…

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  • Photo of How to use viruses to save a person’s life from superbugs

    How to use viruses to save a person’s life from superbugs

    In this week’s episode of the Science Focus Podcast, we’re joined by AIDS researcher Professor Steffanie Strathdee. In 2015, Strathdee’s husband was infected by a superbug that was resistant to every antibiotic that the doctors could throw at it, but she was able to save his life with an experimental treatment made of viruses found in sewage. Strathdee is the author…

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