Welcome to Animalcules 1.6, a blog carnival about microbes and anything microbial! It’s a pretty lean issue this time, so I’m sure you folks won’t have a hard time having a look at these entries:
Tara Smith of Aetiology takes another look at emerging disease and zoonoses, and takes a closer look at Streptococcus suis, a bacteria that causes a fatal disease in piglets, and meningitis in humans. Where can biotech help? Seems like there is a need for developing detection, diagnosis and control, in terms of therapy and vaccine production.
Ewen Callaway of Complex Medium writes about a study that curators, conservators and art collectors could benefit from: Protecting your artworks from damage caused cyanobacteria. Read and find out how. It seems such a simple solution!
Again about cyanobacteria: Coturnix is doing a series on biological clocks in microorganisms, and for this issue of Animalcules, sent an article about the evolution of clocks in Synechococcus and Nostoc. The article discusses how these clocks are genetically determined. The thought that runs through my mind is: How can then put these clocks to biotechnological use? Considering how these clocks seems to be connected to nitrogen fixation, could this, for example, bear impact on efforts to engineer nitrogen-fixing plants? Food for thought.
Gloria Gamat of The PharmVoice reports another potential blockbuster product from bacteria: artemisinic acid, a precursor to artemisinin, an antimalarial drug, which I also mentioned here at the Biotech Weblog.
And from this weblog, take a look at this entry about a novel diagnostic strip for tuberculosis. It’s still under clinical trials, but it seems to be a great deal better than the conventional sputum microscopy test.
That’s it! But while you’re here, would you help me improve this weblog and answer a short survey? It will just take a few minutes! Thanks!
The next issue of Animalcules will be up on May 4 at Digital Bio. See you there!