Archive for the ‘Great posts to check out’ Category


MicrobeWorld need your help

March 18, 2012

For anyone unfamiliar with MicrobeWorld it’s a fantastic resource focusing on the microbiological world.  It’s run by the American Society for Microbiology and is host to the excellent podcasts “This Week in Microbiology“, “This Week in Virology” and “This Week in Parasitism“.  It also has articles on basic microbiology, cool experiments you can try at home, as well as links to news articles, videos and images all on microbiology.  Something for everyone in fact, from small children to professional microbiologists.  (Go on, open it in a new tab!  You know you’re curious!)

So that’s why I think it’s fab but why am I plugging it today?  Well MicrobeWorld have a grant application in the Knight Foundation News Challenge and whilst there’s not a voting system as such by which the grants will be decided (the trustees make the final decision) the Knight Foundation says:

“In evaluating your ability to conduct your project, we will also look at your ability to encourage support for, and critiques of, your idea on the News Challenge Tumblr and elsewhere online.”

So any and all support you can offer them would be fantastic.  You can heart (is this the correct term? *whispers*I confess to having never used Tumblr), reblog or comment on the post.

Please support this great website if you can.


By Gaspirtz licenced under CC-BY-SA-3.0


Sadly pet ownership comes with risks

March 13, 2012

Maryn McKenna over at SUPERBUG has got a post up discussing a recent paper (see below) that looked at 3 cases of (human) infection with Pasteurella multocida.  In all 3 cases it is thought that the patients involved caught the bacteria from nursing their sick pets.

Pasteurella multocida is a nasty species of bacteria and infection with it can very easily be fatal in humans.  Human cases are mostly associated with scratches and bites from cats and dogs (P. multocida can and does live happily in their mouths without causing any problems to them). However, in the cases published in the paper the transmission from animal to human seems to be effectively from mouth to mouth, rather than via injection through the skin as would happen with a bite.

It’s a very sad reminder that whilst pet ownership has many many benefits, we shouldn’t ignore the risks.


Paper Cited:

Myers EM, Ward SL, Myers JP. Life-threatening respiratory pasteurellosis associated with palliative pet care. Clin Infect Dis. 2012 Mar;54(6):e55-7. Epub 2012 Jan 11. DOI: 10.1093/cid/cir975 (May be behind paywall)


Photo by Adriano and released under a Creative Commons Attribution- Share Alike 3.0 Unported Licence