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Press Releases

Welcome to ASM's Newsroom, a resource for journalists seeking information relating to the microbiological sciences. Members of the media and the general public can access current and archived press releases highlighting the latest research published in ASM's journals or presented at our meetings.

ASM has joined the Initiative for Open Citations I4OC, a collaboration between scholarly publishers, researchers, and others to promote the unrestricted availability of scholarly citation data.

To better understand how antibiotic-resistant organisms spread in hospitals, investigators at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, recently collected samples from pipes beneath the hospital's intensive care unit and from outside manholes draining hospital wastewater. They conducted whole-genome analyses on the samples to study the bacterial plasmids, or rings of DNA, that can confer resistance to antibiotics. 

Phages—viruses that infect bacteria—are abundant in the bacteria that inhabit the female bladder. This is good news, because phage could be used as alternative treatment when antibiotics become resistant to pathogenic bacteria.

To characterize the genes of newly identified bacteria, microbiologists often introduce mutations within the bacteria using mobile DNA segments called transposons to study the impact of these mutations.

In January, the American Academy of Microbiology elected 96 new Fellows. Fellows of the American Academy of Microbiology, an honorific leadership group within the ASM, are elected annually through a highly selective, peer-review process, based on their records of scientific achievement and original contributions that have advanced microbiology.

Bacteria and fungi colonize the rubber seals of dishwashers in biofilms—which are thin, slimy, hard-to-eradicate films of these microbes that adhere to surfaces. Investigators have now shown that the diversity of species in the biofilms correlates most strongly with the age of the dishwasher, its frequency of use, and the hardness of the tap water.

Wednesday, 03 January 2018 09:55

Tuberculosis Drugs Work Better With Vitamin C

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Studies in mice and in tissue cultures suggest that giving vitamin C with tuberculosis drugs could reduce the unusually long time it takes these drugs to eradicate this pathogen.

Microbiologists report this week in mBio that the bacterium Chromobacterium piscinae produces cyanide when under attack from Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus HD100, a microbial predator found in rivers and soils that ingests its prey from the inside out.

Tuesday, 12 December 2017 09:56

Battling White-nose Syndrome in Bats

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Millions of bats in North America have been wiped out by the disease white-nose syndrome caused by the fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans, and scientists worry that a catastrophic reduction in the bat population will have pervasive ecological repercussions. Now, a new study in mBio shines light on where the fungus came from and how it spreads.

Dutch cheeses are made using complex starter cultures, that have been employed for centuries. Due to changes in strain composition within a culture, the quality frequently fluctuates. A team of Norwegian investigators has developed a tool that could be used to monitor the strains within a culture with high resolution, in order to maintain cheese quality.

Wednesday, 06 December 2017 12:53

Probiotic Gets a Boost from Breast Milk

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Supplementation with probiotics can improve a person's gut health, but the benefits are often fleeting, and colonization by the probiotic's good microbes usually doesn't last. Breast milk may help sustain those colonies in the long run, say researchers at the University of California, Davis.

In a study published in mBio, researchers connect the onset and severity of mono to T-cells that react to both EBV and the influenza A virus.

Fermented sausages can vary in taste quality depending on whether the fermentations begin “spontaneously”, or using a commercial starter culture. A team of Italian investigators found that commercial starter culture produced sausages with higher acidity, and inferior taste, as compared with spontaneous fermentation.

Up to 91 percent of bacterial strains causing a common type of invasive serogroup B meningococcal disease in children and young adults express at least one of the antigens contained in a four-component vaccine called MenB-4C (Bexsero), according to laboratory studies conducted by investigators at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and at GlaxoSmithKline, manufacturers of the vaccine.

Researchers demonstrate using a mouse model that engineered nanosponges can be used to protect eyes from infections caused by Enterococcus faecalis.

A flavor compound called phenylethyl acetate imparts a hint of rose or honey to wherever it’s found — a dab of perfume, a sip of wine, a slug of beer.

A group of prestigious not-for-profit scientific membership societies today announced the launch of the Scientific Society Publisher Alliance.

Antibiotics can influence the swimming and swarming ability of multidrug-resistant bacteria, according to a new study in mSphere, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017 15:11

Gut Fungi Could Play a Role in Obesity Epidemic

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A high-fat diet changes fungi in the gut and may play a role in the development of obesity, according to a new study.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017 14:19

Study Identifies Whale Blow Microbiome

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A new study identified for the first time an extensive conserved group of bacteria within healthy humpback whales' blow.

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