ASM News, Journal Articles and Updates

ASM Topic Map

ASM calls your attention to a feature on its website called the “Topic Map” which appears at the top of ASM’s homepage. The Topic Map is a navigational tool that lets you select from a list of topics, including Clinical Microbiology, and see all the pages that are associated with that topic. Go to the ASM Web Pageand click on the Topic Map at the top of your computer screen. A pulldown menu will appear, allowing you to pick topics from the following list: All Topics, Biodefense, Clinical Microbiology, Postdoc Fellows, and Student Programs. Once you select the topic of interest, click “GO” and the list of related web pages will appear.

New from ASM Press: Cumitech 42
ASM Science

Cumitech 42: Infections in Hemopoietic Stem Cell Transplant Recipients (Coordinating Editor: Allan L. Truant), focuses on infectious complications frequently encountered in hemopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) recipients. Guidelines for preventing opportunistic infections among HSCT recipients by the CDC, IDSA, and the American Society of Blood and Marrow Transplantation provide a solid foundation for this review. Infections are broken down into four main categories, including bacterial, viral, mycotic, and parasitic infections, and focus on those agents that occur at an increased rate among HSCT recipients in comparison to the general population.

New Academy Reports

Microbial Triggers of Chronic Human Illness

A new report, “Microbial Triggers of Chronic Human Illness” released by the American Academy of Microbiology, details how the increasing aging populations in the United States and throughout the developed world appear to correlate with a switch from acute infectious diseases to chronic diseases, as the major cause of morbidity and mortality. The report also recommends new criteria be developed for evaluating the strength of association between microbes and chronic illness.

Preharvest Food Safety and Security

The recently released American Academy of Microbiology report, “Preharvest Food Safety and Security,” points out that recent outbreaks of a number of foodborne illnesses have been linked to contamination occurring in the preharvest stage of food processing. Recommendations are made for creating an accessible international database of genetic sequences for known foodborne pathogens along with new and improved tools for detecting and cataloging pathogens on the farm.

From Outside to Inside: Environmental Microorganisms as Human Pathogens

“From Outside to Inside: Environmental Microorganisms as Human Pathogens,” a new report released by the American Academy of Microbiology, points out the issue that while many infectious diseases are caused by human-to-human transmission, others are caused by microorganisms that exist in the outside environment. The difference between the two is the ability for environmental pathogens to survive and thrive outside the host. The report recommends that scientists from different fields work together to address the challenges presented by these environmental pathogens.

Journal Articles of Interest
To Download Journal Articles

Light May Rapidly and Painlessly Kill Bacteria That Cause Gum Disease

Exposure to broadband light may provide a rapid and painless method for killing the bacteria that cause plaque and periodontal disease, say researchers from Texas and Massachusetts. Their findings appear in the April 2005 issue of the journal, Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. (N.S. Soukos, S. Som, A.D. Abernethy, K. Ruggiero, J. Dunham, C. Lee, A.G. Doukas, J.M. Goodson. 2005. Phototargeting oral black-pigmented bacteria. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 49. 4: 1391-1396.)

New Approach for Controlling Drug-Resistant Staphylococci

Researchers from Ireland have identified a bacteriophage that may inhibit drug-resistant Staphylococci infections. Their findings appear in the April 2005 issue of the journal, Applied and Environmental Microbiology. (S. O’Flaherty, R.P. Ross, W. Meaney, G.F. Fitzgerald, M.F. Elbreki, A. Coffey. 2005. Potential of the polyvalent anti-Staphylococcus bacteriophage K for control of antibiotic-resistant staphylococci from hospitals. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 71. 4: 1836-1842.)

Interleukin-12 May Protect Against Lethal Respiratory Infection

Treatment with interleukin-12 may protect against tularemia in humans, say researchers from Albany Medical College in New York. Their findings appear in the April 2005 issue of the journal, Infection and Immunity. (N.S. Duckett, S. Olmos, D.M. Durrant, D.W. Metzger. 2005 . Intranasal interleukin-12 treatment for protection against respiratory infection with the Francisella tularensis live vaccine strain. Infection and Immunity, 73. 4: 2306-2311.)

Norovirus Prevalent in Those Suffering from Traveler’s Diarrhea

Norovirus may be the most common cause of travelers’ diarrhea for United States citizens returning from Mexico and Guatamala say researchers from the U.S., Guatemala, Mexico and Sweden. Their findings appear in the March 2005 issue of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology. (A.R. Chapin, C.M. Carpenter, W.C. Dudley, L.C. Gibson, R. Pratdesaba, O. Torres, D. Sanchez, J. Belkind-Gerson, I. Nyquist, A. Karnell, B. Gustafsson, J.L. Halpern, A.L. Bourgeois, K.J. Schwab. 2005. Prevalence of norovirus among visitors from the United States to Mexico and Guatemala who experience traveler’s diarrhea. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 43. 3: 1112-1117.)