Monday, December 11, 2017

BacterioFiles 320 - Fortified Fungi Fight Fevers

Anopheles gambiae
This episode: Fungi modified to produce spider and scorpion toxins kill malaria-transmitting mosquitoes extra fast!

Thanks to Brian Lovett for his contribution.

Download Episode (7.8 MB, 8.5 minutes)

Show notes:
Microbe of the episode: Microbispora parva

News item

Journal Paper:
Bilgo E, Lovett B, Fang W, Bende N, King GF, Diabate A, Leger RJS. 2017. Improved efficacy of an arthropod toxin expressing fungus against insecticide-resistant malaria-vector mosquitoes. Sci Rep 7:3433.

Other interesting stories:
  • Virus-like protein helps bacteria eat fungi (paper)
  • Molecules from good bacteria help animals stay healthy for longer (paper)
  • Zika virus could help treat brain cancer
  • Probiotic bacterium helps prevent gluten-related gut problems in mice (paper)
  • Native vs. invader microbes help or prevent invasive marine plants invade

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    Episode outline:

    Monday, December 4, 2017

    BacterioFiles 319 - Mycelial Moisture Magnanimity

    By: Worrich et al. 2017, Nat Commun
    CC-BY 4.0
    This episode: Filament network-forming organisms like fungi can transfer nutrients and moisture to bacteria in harsher conditions!

    Download Episode (10.4 MB, 11.4 minutes)

    Show notes:
    Microbe of the episode: Desulfuromonas acetoxidans

    News item

    Journal Paper:
    Worrich A, Stryhanyuk H, Musat N, König S, Banitz T, Centler F, Frank K, Thullner M, Harms H, Richnow H-H, Miltner A, Kästner M, Wick LY. 2017. Mycelium-mediated transfer of water and nutrients stimulates bacterial activity in dry and oligotrophic environments. Nat Commun 8:ncomms15472.

    Other interesting stories:
  • Which gut fungi transfer from mothers to babies (paper)
  • Bacteria as catalyst substrate for biofuel cleaning
  • Different gut microbiota associated with Parkinson's disease
  • Engineering gut bacteria to talk to the body in helpful ways
  • Bacteria induce mating in another ocean microbe

  • Post questions or comments here or email to bacteriofiles@gmail.com. Thanks for listening!

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    Monday, November 20, 2017

    BacterioFiles 318 - Killers Controlling Coral Contamination

    Predator attacking and killing prey
    From: Welsh et al. 2017 PeerJ
    CC-BY 4.0
    This episode: Bacteria that prey on other bacteria could help keep corals healthy! Thanks to Rory Welsh for his contribution.

    Download Episode (12.8 MB, 14 minutes)

    Show notes:
    Microbe of the episode: Latino mammarenavirus

    Journal Paper:
    Welsh RM, Rosales SM, Zaneveld JR, Payet JP, McMinds R, Hubbs SL, Thurber RLV. 2017. Alien vs. predator: bacterial challenge alters coral microbiomes unless controlled by Halobacteriovorax predators. PeerJ 5:e3315.

    Other interesting stories:
  • Using trees and their microbes to clean up pollution
  • Using bacteria to preserve/repair stone monuments and statues (paper)
  • Stable gut microbes could help defend against amoeba infection
  • Phage therapy treats very resistant infection in person
  • Probiotic + probiotic food could help prevent infant sepsis (paper)

  • Post questions or comments here or email to bacteriofiles@gmail.com. Thanks for listening!

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    Episode outline:

    Monday, November 13, 2017

    BacterioFiles 317 - Mosquito Microbe Movement

    Aedes aegypti
    By Muhammad Mahdi Karim
    Own work, GFDL 1.2
    This episode: Studying how Wolbachia bacteria spread through a mosquito population helps efforts to use them to prevent the spread of Dengue! Thanks to Tom Schmidt for his contribution.

    Download Episode (11.3 MB, 12.4 minutes)

    Show notes:
    Microbe of the episode: Heterosigma akashiwo virus 01

    News item

    Journal Paper:
    Schmidt TL, Barton NH, Rašić G, Turley AP, Montgomery BL, Iturbe-Ormaetxe I, Cook PE, Ryan PA, Ritchie SA, Hoffmann AA, O’Neill SL, Turelli M. 2017. Local introduction and heterogeneous spatial spread of dengue-suppressing Wolbachia through an urban population of Aedes aegypti. PLOS Biol 15:e2001894.

    Other interesting stories:

  • Gut bacteria affect what foods and bacteria that fruit flies prefer to eat
  • Using mouth bacteria to estimate time of death
  • Huge bacterial protein attaches to ice and diatoms
  • Feeding friendly gut microbes helps prevent imbalance
  • Bacteria can sense and respond to touch

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    Episode outline:

    Monday, November 6, 2017

    BacterioFiles 316 - Studying Sizeable Special Synthetases

    Beauvericin
    By Yu et al. 2017, Nat Commun
    CC-BY 4.0
    This episode: Scientists study how fungi make interesting peptides using large proteins instead of ribosomes.

    Download Episode (8.7 MB, 9.5 minutes)

    Show notes:
    Microbe of the episode: Nerine virus X

    News item

    Journal Paper:
    Yu D, Xu F, Zhang S, Zhan J. 2017. Decoding and reprogramming fungal iterative nonribosomal peptide synthetases. Nat Commun 8:ncomms15349.

    Other interesting stories:
  • Using CRISPR to encode a short movie into a bacterial genome (paper)
  • Virus that tolerates boiling acid could be model for super-tough nanomaterials
  • Avoiding microbiota disruption protects frogs from parasites
  • Soil microbe communities are also recovering in prairie restoration
  • Couples modify each other's microbe communities, though not much

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    Episode outline:

    Monday, October 30, 2017

    BacterioFiles 315 - Probiotics Prevent Protein Plaques

    Credit: National Institute on Aging
    This episode: In mice genetically modified to have Alzheimer's-like disease, giving probiotics reduced their degeneration!

    Download Episode (11.8 MB, 13 minutes)

    Show notes:
    Microbe of the episode: SARS coronavirus

    Journal Paper:
    Bonfili L, Cecarini V, Berardi S, Scarpona S, Suchodolski JS, Nasulti C, Fiorini D, Boarelli MC, Rossi G, Eleuteri AM. 2017. Microbiota modulation counteracts Alzheimer's disease progression influencing neuronal proteolysis and gut hormone plasma levels. Sci Rep 7:2426.

    Other interesting stories:

  • Fruit fly bacteria attack wasps' ribosomes that attack them
  • Bacteria living on the eye protect it from infection
  • New technique to prevent CRISPR/Cas from functioning
  • Tardigrades should be able to survive almost any kind of planetary catastrophe
  • Using fungi to recover/clean up metals from liquid (paper)

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    Episode outline:

    Monday, October 16, 2017

    BacterioFiles 314 - Drosophila Dwellers Delay Deficiency

    Drosophila fruit fly
    By André Karwath aka Aka
    CC BY-SA 2.5
    This episode: Bacteria affect fruit fly behavior by reducing their need and craving for protein-rich food!

    Thanks to Dr. Carlos Ribeiro for his contribution!

    Download Episode (14.7 MB, 16.1 minutes)

    Show notes:
    News item

    Ribeiro lab website - two fully-funded postdoc opportunities available

    Journal Paper:
    Leitão-Gonçalves R, Carvalho-Santos Z, Francisco AP, Fioreze GT, Anjos M, Baltazar C, Elias AP, Itskov PM, Piper MDW, Ribeiro C. 2017. Commensal bacteria and essential amino acids control food choice behavior and reproduction. PLOS Biol 15:e2000862.

    Other interesting stories:

  • Bacteria could help remove lead from mining waste (paper)
  • Modified bacteria could make natural food coloring economically
  • Diet correlates with gut microbe community structure better than body weight does (paper)
  • Fungal symbionts in Arctic thawing out may help trees deal with heat
  • How good are commercial microbiota tests?

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    Episode outline: