Latest Blog Posts
Tuesday, 18 September 2018 11:14

Currently available therapies are unable to extend glioblastoma patient survival past 20 months following diagnosis, so researchers are turning to viruses to help battle these tricky, invasive tumors.

Monday, 17 September 2018 12:12

BioMérieux has recently recalled some of their antibiotic susceptibility testing (AST) cards for gram-positive bacteria using the VITEK 2 system. To answer questions regarding use of Vitek 2 AST cards, the ASM Clinical Laboratory Practice Subcommittee has provided guidance to aid clinical labs with this issue.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018 10:21

Prioritization is something we all do daily, yet most of us never take time to formally develop the skill. We choose to go with our gut feeling, or what “makes sense” at the time. In the corporate world, your work impacts the effectiveness of the business as a whole and resources can be limited. It’s imperative to align your work with the broader goals of the organization and to learn how to strategically prioritize projects so that you achieve the best results and tackle the most important projects first. We give you tips on how to start prioritizing your projects in a corporate company.

Monday, 10 September 2018 10:49

In 2016, stories of Zika filled news headlines, causing concern to mothers, travelers and anyone living in mosquito-inhabited areas. But in the last year, the (mosquito) buzz has significantly died down—is Zika still circulating? Is it causing birth defects or other disease? A bit of history can help us predict the future for this recent global threat.

Friday, 07 September 2018 17:18

A new Applied and Environmental Microbiology report characterizes the ability of a bacterial compound to inhibit M. grisea growth, a characteristic that may prove useful in biocontrol of fungal infection of crops.

Tuesday, 04 September 2018 14:08

What's hot in the microbial sciences? ASM summarizes microbiology news and reports in Microbial Minutes, a biweekly news roundup. Watch the YouTube session for summaries and major findings, and read the reports and news coverage for yourself below. 

Saturday, 01 September 2018 08:56

Antibiotic combinations are used frequently in the treatment of bacterial infections. How does the clinical microbiology lab test these combinations to see if they’re the right ones?

Friday, 31 August 2018 09:37

Exposure to the maternal microbiome is an important factor in the immune and metabolic well-being of infants. Through epigenetic alterations and systemic changes in the gut-brain axis, the microbes that are transferred during cesarean section or vaginal delivery might play an even bigger role than we thought.

Wednesday, 29 August 2018 13:18

"Some of the most impactful papers have been those describing resources," says Microbiology Resource Announcements EIC Irene Newton. Here, we introduce our Microbiology Resource of the Month, highlighting the ZetaHunter software made available by Clara Chan's lab at University of Delaware.

Wednesday, 29 August 2018 08:34

For beginner researchers, you want to do every experiment and work on many projects, and that can lead to long work days and early fatigue in graduate school. We describe four tips on how to manage your time in the research lab so you can achieve a work-life balance and be more productive.

Friday, 24 August 2018 17:57

A new mBio article reports on a feature of C. auris that may contribute to its ability to cause serious disease: its ability to evade the innate immune system.

Friday, 24 August 2018 09:34

People have been cultivating yeast since far before its discovery, making it one of the earliest domesticated organisms. Find out how we have shaped yeast into a microbial powerhouse from bread and beer to synthetic biology.

Thursday, 23 August 2018 14:46

By day, Dr. Jeanne Jordan is a clinical virologist working in the School of Public Health at the George Washington University. But for 8 hours each month, she dons a safari-style vest to answer questions in the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History’s newest exhibit, Outbreak: Epidemics in a Connected World. Learn about her science outreach experience in our interview.

Tuesday, 21 August 2018 15:03

What's hot in the microbial sciences? ASM summarizes microbiology news and reports in Microbial Minutes, a biweekly news roundup. This week: plants fix atmospheric nitrogen (with the help of microbes), the gut microbiome influences rotavirus vaccine efficacy, and a specific strain of Wolbachia blocks viral transmission in mosquitos - plus updates on measles and Florida's red tide!

Monday, 20 August 2018 10:03

New technologies mean change for clinical microbiology diagnostic laboratories, but they also present opportunities for career growth. 

Friday, 17 August 2018 17:09

Helicobacter pylori can survive the harsh environment of the stomach, where it uses its urease enzyme to neutralize stomach acid. A new Journal of Bacteriology study reports that urease plays double duty for the bacterium, and can also act as an antioxidant against reactive oxygen species.

Friday, 17 August 2018 11:20

News reports have been covering the marine life dying on the shores of southwest Florida due to a toxic red tide. What exactly is a red tide? What causes a red tide? Why is it toxic? We answer some common questions about this microorganisms-based phenomenon.

Tuesday, 07 August 2018 13:53

What's hot in the microbial sciences? ASM summarizes microbiology news and reports in Microbial Minutes, a biweekly news roundup. Watch the YouTube session for summaries and major findings, and read the reports and news stories for yourself below. 

Friday, 03 August 2018 15:17

E. coli maybe be associated with disease, but they are also an important component of the healthy human gut microbiome. Scientists used human volunteers to ask: what happens when resident, nonpathogenic E. coli meet pathogenic E.coli? Their results, in a new mSystems report, show a surprising resilience of the resident E. coli.

Thursday, 02 August 2018 19:45

A followup to the “Microbial Myths” Youtube video that examines what the literature has to say about microwaving sponges, bathing newborns, and using Bunsen burners as a part of aseptic techniques at the bench.

Wednesday, 01 August 2018 15:34

There is an acceptable range in microorganism concentration in cultures inoculated for antibiotic susceptibility testing. Could variability within this small range produce differences in susceptibility tests? A new Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy report suggests it can.

Monday, 30 July 2018 12:28

Check out a new webinar series that explains how laboratory automation systems alter the workflow in clinical microbiology labs.

Friday, 27 July 2018 19:06

As global plastic waste increases, science turns to specialized microbes to degrade previously non-degradable plastics.

Monday, 23 July 2018 13:08

What's hot in the microbial sciences? ASM summarizes microbiology news and reports in Microbial Minutes, a biweekly news roundup. Watch the YouTube session for summaries and major findings, and read the reports and news stories for yourself below. 

Monday, 23 July 2018 10:19

There are many unique aspects to neonatal and pediatric clinical microbiology: sometimes a test is a bigger deal in kids than in adults, sometimes it’s a smaller deal - and sometimes it’s just a smaller test.

Thursday, 19 July 2018 15:28

Convening a session by proposing a topic and expert speakers may seem like a small part of a large conference like ASM Microbe. We spoke with Kathryn (K.T.) Elliott, whose proposal was accepted for ASM Microbe 2018, and whose entire conference experience was improved because of it. 

Thursday, 19 July 2018 14:15

ASM, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the government of Zambia worked together to bring the lab up to international standards for quality and competency.

Monday, 16 July 2018 14:18

How many adults are asymptomatically infected with a virus that could be passed on to others? A new mSphere study looked systematically at visitors to a New York City landmark to discern who had respiratory disease symptoms, and who tested positive for carrying a respiratory virus.

Monday, 16 July 2018 09:58

“Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry” (MALDI-TOF MS) sounds like the cause of a warp drive breakdown in Star Trek. What does it have to do with clinical microbiology diagnostics?

Friday, 13 July 2018 16:26

Can transgenic plants combined with the right microbes improve bioremediation of contaminated soils? A new Applied and Environmental Microbiology report suggests the answer for some organic chemicals is yes.

Wednesday, 11 July 2018 11:55

Presenting at a conference has many challenges. As a presenter, you need to succinctly deliver a presentation that touches on 1 or 2 takeaways and covers the diverse viewpoints in the room. The audience chose to attend your presentation with the intention to learn about--and use--the information you share. So how do you increase learning for your audience when presenting at a conference? We discuss 4 ways.  

Monday, 09 July 2018 13:37

Big scientific conferences are great, but smaller meetings fill a specialized niche. The Clinical Microbiology Open is a new conference intended to drive industry-academia collaboration to address unmet or poorly met needs in the field of clinical microbiology. 

Monday, 02 July 2018 15:26

What's hot in the microbial sciences? ASM summarizes microbiology news and reports in Microbial Minutes, a biweekly news roundup. Watch the YouTube session for summaries and major findings, and read the reports and news stories for yourself below. 

Monday, 02 July 2018 13:50

It takes courage to try something new when many view new ideas as strange. Compare leadership in 'intermediate susceptibilily' interpretation to leadership in a festival dance party - who needs more courage, leaders or their early followers?

Friday, 29 June 2018 14:09

Biological sex can alter infection by influencing the immune response, but what about influencing the microbial side? A new mSphere report shows that Neisseria gonorroheae has different gene expression pattern in males versus females - with implications for antimicrobial resistance gene expression.

Thursday, 28 June 2018 15:46

Most methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strains are resistant because they’ve acquired a mec allele, which makes screening them as easy as a PCR reaction. But what about non-mec MRSA? A new Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy study investigated nearly 300 MRSA isolates, characterizing the genetic diversity of non-mec strains. This characterization may identify common genetic mechanisms to improve molecular screening for all MRSA patients. 

Friday, 22 June 2018 14:40

Cytomegalovirus and other opportunistic infections are often thought to only have negative consequences for those experiencing overt disease symptoms. A new Journal of Virology study reports the effect of subclinical CMV infection on the rhesus macaque response to the flu vaccine, suggesting an influence of subclinical infections on host immunity.

Tuesday, 19 June 2018 13:27

Mycology is a neglected field in microbiology and fungi are often overlooked or shunned in our everyday lives. But despite the contentious history of their classification, fungi have been adapted for many uses in industries including: medicine, textiles, construction and bioremediation.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018 15:51

We’ve compared ASM Microbe to Las Vegas and a multistage concert, in part because there are so many amazing scientific sessions occurring simultaneously that attendees must prioritize the sessions in their schedule. We’ve aggregated some of the best social media summaries of scientific presentations from the 2018 Microbe sessions.

Sunday, 03 June 2018 13:24

If you are looking for an exciting career, consider a clinical microbiology! On top of common pathogens like Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli, clinical microbiologists also deal with all sorts of rare microbes, including bioterrorism agents! Why you should always be prepared for a 'weirdo' microbe in the clinical lab, on Bugs & Drugs.