a human neuron illuminated in bright green on a black background.
Mitochondrial Metabolism Dictates Neurons’ Growth Rate
Katherine Irving | Jan 30, 2023 | 4 min read
Altering the rate of respiration in mitochondria changes how fast neurons grow, making mouse neurons grow more like human ones and vice versa, a study finds.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm
Double Agents: Engineered Bacteria Tackle Pathogenic Biofilms in Mice
Katherine Irving | Jan 26, 2023 | 3 min read
Mycoplasma pneumoniae with pathogenic genes replaced by biofilm-degrading ones enhance survival in a mouse model of ventilator-associated pneumonia.
Discover the microbiome’s role in diabetes 
A Question of Balance: How the Gut Microbiome Influences Diabetes
The Scientist’s Creative Services Team | 1 min read
The presence of beneficial or detrimental microbes pulls the host toward health or disease.
a newly hatched mosquito sits on top of water, with its discarded cocoon floating below
In Vitro Malaria Sporozoite Production May Lead to Cheaper Vaccines
Katherine Irving | Jan 20, 2023 | 4 min read
A method for culturing the infectious stage of the Plasmodium lifecycle could increase malaria vaccine production efficiency by tenfold, study authors say.
An artist’s rendering of a DNA-based virus trap, represented as gray rods in a short cone-shaped arrangement. One is coated with blue molecules, likely antibodies, that adhere to a virus target. Another image shows to traps coming together to capture a red coronavirus.
“Origami” DNA Traps Could Keep Large Viruses From Infecting Cells
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jan 18, 2023 | 4 min read
By engineering structures out of DNA, scientists could potentially prevent larger viruses, like coronaviruses and influenza viruses, from interacting with cells.
Brush Up: Quorum Sensing in Bacteria and Beyond
Brush Up: Quorum Sensing in Bacteria and Beyond
Deanna MacNeil, PhD | 4 min read
Microbes communicate with quorum sensing to coordinate their behavior in response to how many neighbors they have.
Artist’s rendition of a neuron silhouetted against a glowing red background.
SNO-y Protein Levels Help Explain Why More Women Develop Alzheimer’s
Dan Robitzski | Jan 6, 2023 | 4 min read
Female postmortem brains contain more S-nitrosylated C3 proteins, likely linked to menopause, which instruct immune cells to kill neuronal synapses.
Pink neutrophils on a white background.
Mucus-Eating Gut Bacteria May Promote Fever After Cancer Treatment
Alejandra Manjarrez, PhD | Jan 5, 2023 | 3 min read
The expansion of mucus-degraders in the mouse gut—possibly due to poor nutrition—thins the colon’s mucus layer and may weaken defenses against blood-infecting microbes.
A person holding a section of his face and looking in to his brain through a magnifying glass stock illustration
Science Philosophy in a Flash - A Look at Aging Through Young Eyes 
Iris Kulbatski, PhD | 1 min read
Aimée Parker shares how her childlike curiosity and collaborative spirit motivate her scientific pursuits.
Rendered image of <em>Chlamydia</em>
How Chlamydia Guards Itself Against the Immune System
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jan 2, 2023 | 4 min read
The bacterium produces a particular protein that allows it to sneak past the human immune system even while triggering inflammation.
Photo of Monir Moniruzzaman
Monir Moniruzzaman Studies the Secrets of Giant Viruses
James M. Gaines | Jan 2, 2023 | 4 min read
The University of Miami researcher studies how a mysterious group of supersized viruses infects and influences the evolution of their hosts.
An abstract stained-glass portrait of a woman with an image of an eye representing the brain
Through the Looking Glass: Aging, Inflammation, and Gut Rejuvenation
Iris Kulbatski, PhD | 4 min read
Renewing the aging gut microbiome holds promise for preventing inflammatory brain and eye degeneration.
<em>Chlamydia</em> invades a host cell, forms a membrane-bound vacuole, or inclusion, and then modifies the protein composition of the structure&rsquo;s membrane. If immune cells detect <em>Chlamydia</em> before it forms the inclusion, they trigger T cells to produce interferon-&gamma; (IFN-&gamma;), a powerful cytokine. IFN-&gamma; activates the protein mysterin (also called RFN213), which attaches ubiquitin to the inclusion membrane, signaling the cell to destroy the inclusion&rsquo;s contents by dumping them into a lysosome (left). C. trachomatis produces GarD, a protein that integrates into the inclusion membrane itself and somehow prevents mysterin from attaching ubiquitin, allowing the bacterium to evade immune destruction while continuing to multiply and eventually bursting from the cell (right).
Infographic: How Chlamydia Evades Immune Detection
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Jan 2, 2023 | 2 min read
Chlamydia trachomatis, the bacterium that causes chlamydia, hides from the immune system by cloaking itself in the host cell’s membrane then modifying the membrane’s protein composition.
a white mouse sits on a blue exercise wheel, looking out onto the shavings below
Mice With a Healthy Gut Microbiome Are More Motivated to Exercise
Katherine Irving | Dec 16, 2022 | 4 min read
A neural pathway between the gut and the brain led to the release of dopamine when the mice ran on a wheel or treadmill, but only in the presence of a robust microbiome. 
The Scientist Speaks - Rising From the Dead: How Antibiotic Resistance Genes Travel Between Current and Past Bacteria
Nele Haelterman, PhD | 1 min read
Heather Kittredge and Sarah Evans discuss the environmental conditions that facilitate natural transformation in bacteria’s native habitat.  
Artist&rsquo;s rendition of the molecular structure of a ribosome (blue and purple) as it produces a polypeptide chain (red) from an mRNA template (orange and gray), with tRNA molecules (dark purple) shuttling amino acids.
Specialized Sperm Ribosomes Are Key to Male Fertility in Mice
Dan Robitzski | Dec 15, 2022 | 4 min read
A previously unknown kind of ribosome is responsible for folding sperm proteins, which decay before fertilization if prepared by other ribosomes.
Illustration of HIV virus
Viral Protein Behind Chronic Inflammation in People with HIV: Study
Natalia Mesa, PhD | Dec 12, 2022 | 3 min read
The HIV protein Nef can cause long-term genetic changes that lead to hyperreactive immune cells, according to research in human cells and mice. 
Learn About the Latest Innovations in Microbiology Research
Getting Ahead of the Curve with Microbiological Assays
The Scientist’s Creative Services Team and Tecan | 1 min read
Versatile technology helps scientists streamline microbiology research.
Illustration of viruses represented with different colors overlapping each other.
What Happens When You Catch More than One Virus?
Alejandra Manjarrez, PhD | Dec 7, 2022 | 8 min read
The “tripledemic” shines a spotlight on viral interference, in which one infection can block another.
Image of a culture of <em >Entamoeba gingivalis</em> growing together with bacteria. There are two roundish amoeba cells surrounded by bacilli and other bacterial forms.
Recently Discovered Virus Family Infects a Human Oral Amoeba
Alejandra Manjarrez, PhD | Dec 1, 2022 | 3 min read
Redondoviruses, which have been associated with cases of periodontitis and other diseases, turn out to live inside the amoeba Entamoeba gingivalis.