The Science Life
Craft brewers are going wild. Some of the trendiest beers on the market are intentionally brewed with yeast scavenged from nature, rather than the carefully cultivated ale or lager yeast used in most commercial beers.
Matthew Bochman is in on the action. By day, he’s a biochemist at Indiana University Bloomington who studies how cells keep their DNA intact. On the side, he can be found...
News in Brief
Some bacteria may shield tumor cells against a common chemotherapy drug.
Certain types of bacteria make an enzyme that inactivates the drug gemcitabine, researchers report in the Sept. 15 Science. Gemcitabine is used to treat patients with pancreatic, lung, breast and bladder cancers.
Bacteria that produce the enzyme cytidine deaminase converted the drug to an inactive form. That...
Science & the Public
Craft brewers are going wild. Some of the trendiest beers on the market are intentionally brewed to be sour and funky. One of the hottest new ingredients in the beverages: Yeast scavenged from nature.
Unlike today’s usual brewing, which typically relies on carefully cultivated ale or lager yeast and rejects outsider microbes, some brewers are returning to beer’s roots. Those beginnings...
Letters to the Editor
Locked up08/23/2017 - 16:00 Astronomy, Microbiology, Physics
Simulations suggest that heat from an infant Earth, the sun and the moon could have vaporized the moon’s metals into a thick atmosphere, Lisa Grossman reported in “Metallic air may have swaddled moon” (SN: 8/5/17, p. 7). One way to test the idea would be to look for a ring of extra sodium in rocks around the moon’s twilight zone, where sodium snow would have accumulated. This zone...
A new testing method can distinguish between early Lyme disease and a similar tick-borne illness, researchers report. The approach may one day lead to a reliable diagnostic test for Lyme, an illness that can be challenging to identify.
Using patient blood serum samples, the test accurately discerned early Lyme disease from the similar southern tick‒associated rash illness, or STARI, up...
A bad bacterium may make colon cancer worse.
Streptococcus gallolyticus spurred growth of some colon cancer cells in lab dishes and in mice, researchers report July 13 in PLOS Pathogens. S. gallolyticus stimulates a biochemical chain reaction that scientists already knew is involved in the development of colon cancer, the researchers discovered.
Bacteria had to be in direct contact...
People with weakened immune systems might help scientists get a jump on the flu virus.
Some flu virus mutations popped up again and again in cancer patients with long-term infections, researchers report June 27 in eLife. And some of those mutations were the same as ones found in flu viruses circulating around the world a few years later, evolutionary virologist Jesse Bloom of the Fred...
On the surface, bacteria may appear bland. But there’s more going on inside than meets the eye, new research is revealing.
For many years, scientists thought that bacteria didn’t have internal structures and were basically “bags of enzymes,” says structural and cell biologist Martin Warren of the University of Kent in England.
Now, one group of researchers has...
Acting like miniature trees that soak up sunlight and release oxygen, photosynthetic bacteria injected into the heart may lighten the damage from heart attacks, a new study in rats suggests.
When researchers injected the bacteria into rats’ hearts, the microbes restored oxygen to heart tissue after blood supply was cut off as in a heart attack, researchers at Stanford University report...
The woman in her 70s was in trouble. What started as a broken leg led to an infection in her hip that hung on for two years and several hospital stays. At a Nevada hospital, doctors gave the woman seven different antibiotics, one after the other. The drugs did little to help her. Lab results showed that none of the 14 antibiotics available at the hospital could fight the infection, caused by...