Tag Archives: infection

Conception timed with periods of low mosquito activity could reduce Zika virus infection

Women could prevent contracting the mosquito-borne Zika virus while pregnant by timing the first months of pregnancy with seasonal declines in mosquito activity, according to a new paper. The paper is the first to suggest that women in the numerous countries affected by the Zika virus epidemic can still safely pursue motherhood rather than forgo pregnancy altogether. (more…)

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Yale study: How antibodies access neurons to fight infection

Yale scientists have solved a puzzle of the immune system: how antibodies enter the nervous system to control viral infections. Their finding may have implications for the prevention and treatment of a range of conditions, including herpes and Guillain-Barre syndrome, which has been linked to the Zika virus. (more…)

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Outsmarting Herpes: Researchers Use the Body’s Natural Defenses to Stop Outbreaks

Herpes is forever.

When one of the sexually transmitted virus’ two strains enters the body through genital tissue,
it travels to neurons near the spine that the body’s defenses have learned not to kill – even when infected – because they don’t regenerate easily. And there the virus hides, occasionally reactivating to cause blisters that can break to cause painful sores. Ripe to invade a sexual partner. (more…)

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Wild sheep show benefits of putting up with parasites

In the first evidence that natural selection favors an individual’s infection tolerance, researchers from Princeton University and the University of Edinburgh have found that an animal’s ability to endure an internal parasite strongly influences its reproductive success. Reported in the journal PLoS Biology, the finding could provide the groundwork for boosting the resilience of humans and livestock to infection. (more…)

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Making Old Lungs Look New Again

Animal research suggests ibuprofen can reduce lung inflammation in elderly

COLUMBUS, Ohio – New research shows that the lungs become more inflammatory with age and that ibuprofen can lower that inflammation.

In fact, immune cells from old mouse lungs fought tuberculosis bacteria as effectively as cells from young mice after lung inflammation was reduced by ibuprofen. The ibuprofen had no effect on the immune response to TB in young mice. (more…)

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Tiny acts of microbe justice help reveal how nature fights freeloaders

The idea of everyone in a community pitching in is so universal that even bacteria have a system to prevent the layabouts of their kind from enjoying the fruit of others’ hard work, Princeton University researchers have discovered.

Groups of the bacteria Vibrio cholerae deny loafers their unjust desserts by keeping the food generated by the community’s productive members away from V. cholerae that attempt to live on others’ leftover nutrients, the researchers report in the journal Current Biology. The researchers found that individual bacteria produce a thick coating around themselves to prevent nutrients from drifting over to the undeserving. Alternatively, the natural flow of fluids over the surface of bacterial communities can wash away excess food before the freeloaders can indulge. (more…)

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The Virus That Makes a Disposable Syringe

For decades, no one knew how a virus that preys on bacteria transfers its DNA into the host cells because it appeared to lack the structures other viruses use for that process. Now researchers have discovered how the virus does it – using a structure that might hold applications for nanotechnology.

A research team led by the University of Arizona and Purdue University has discovered something very unique about a virus that has been studied for decades: It has the ability to grow a temporary tube-shaped structure, enabling it to inject its DNA into the bacteria on which it preys. (more…)

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