General microbiology and science, June 26

Detection of bacteria in blood cultures, detection of fungi with mass spectrometry, metagenomics, and humans influencing microbes. And the Picks.

Detection of bacteria in clinical sites

Pediatric Multicenter Evaluation of the Verigene Gram-Negative Blood Culture Test for Rapid Detection of Inpatient Bacteremia Involving Gram-Negative Organisms, Extended-Spectrum Beta-Lactamases, and Carbapenemases – K. V. Sullivan – Journal of Clinical Microbiology

“We evaluated the investigational use only (IUO) version of the rapid Verigene Gram-negative blood culture test (BC-GN), a microarray that detects 9 genus/species targets “

Evaluation of Three Rapid Diagnostic Methods for Direct Identification of Microorganisms in Positive Blood Cultures – Raquel M. Martinez – Journal of Clinical Microbiology

“A total of 159 blood cultures (VersaTREK Trek Diagnostic Systems, Cleveland, OH) positive for Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria as well as yeast were analyzed with QuickFISH and MALDI-TOF MS. In all, 102 blood cultures were analyzed using the BC-GP assay.”

Fungal detection

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.12.46 PMAccuracy of Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization–Time of Flight Mass Spectrometry for Identification of Clinical Pathogenic Fungi: a Meta-Analysis – Huazhi Ling – Journal of Clinical Microbiology


Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.13.18 PMPredicting microbial growth – Jonathan Monk, Bernhard O. Palsson – Science

“This detailed biochemical information can be converted into a computational model—a genome-scale model, or GEM (1)—that allows phenotypic functions to be predicted. Both environmental and genetic parameters are explicitly accounted for in GEMs, enabling increasingly accurate predictions of the genotype-phenotype relationship in a given environment.”

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.11.58 PMBeyond the Chromosome: The Prevalence of Unique Extra-Chromosomal Bacteriophages with Integrated Virulence Genes in Pathogenic Staphylococcus aureus – Bryan Utter – PLOS ONE

“We selectively enriched and sequenced extra-chromosomal DNA from S. aureus isolates using Roche-454 technology and uncovered evidence for the widespread distribution of multiple extra-chromosomal prophages (ExPΦs) throughout both antibiotic-sensitive and -resistant strains. “

Antibiotic resistance

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.14.32 PMNext-Generation Sequencing for Typing and Detection of Resistance Genes: Performance of a New Commercial Method during an Outbreak of Extended-Spectrum-Beta-Lactamase-Producing Escherichia coli – J. Veenemans – Journal of Clinical Microbiology

“We evaluated the performance of a new NGS assay (Hospital Acquired Infection BioDetection System; Pathogenica) during an outbreak of sequence type 131 (ST131) Escherichia coli infections in a nursing home in The Netherlands.”

General microbiology

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.15.15 PMAspergillomarasmine A overcomes metallo-β-lactamase antibiotic resistance – Andrew M. King – Nature

“Here we have identified a fungal natural product, aspergillomarasmine A (AMA), that is a rapid and potent inhibitor of the NDM-1 enzyme and another clinically relevant MBL, VIM-2. AMA also fully restored the activity of meropenem against Enterobacteriaceae, Acinetobacter spp. and Pseudomonas spp. possessing either VIM or NDM-type alleles.”

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.13.55 PMMicrobiology of the Anthropocene – Michael R. Gillings, Ian T. Paulsen – Anthropocene

“Recent advances in microbial genomics and ecology show that human perturbations to microbial populations correspond closely to the proposed phases of the Anthropocene: the ‘paleoanthropocene’ which began with the rise of agriculture; the industrial revolution, from the late 1700’s; and the ‘great acceleration’ from the 1950’s to the present day. “

Marine mammals

Retrospective Study of Etiologic Agents Associated with Nonsuppurative Meningoencephalitis in Stranded Cetaceans in the Canary Islands – Eva Sierra – Journal of Clinical Microbiology

” Six animals (5 striped dolphins and 1 common dolphin) showed IHC and/or molecular evidence of morbilliviral antigens and/or genomes, mainly in brain tissue. Conventional nested PCR detected herpesviral DNA in brain tissue samples from two striped dolphins”

Free Willy? Dolphin drama riles aquaria – David Grimm – Science

“This week, the Dolphin Research Center in Grassy Key, Florida, sent a letter to the National Aquarium stating that removing these animals from their current facilities would be bad for both science and public engagement. “

Dr. Bik’s Picks

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.33.00 PMFlower discrimination by pollinators in a dynamic chemical environment – Jeffrey A. Riffell – Science

“Here, we measured the plume from Datura wrightii flowers, a nectar resource for Manduca sexta moths, and show that the scent was dynamic and rapidly embedded among background odors.”

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.32.13 PMBig Data Is Complex, Cluster Analysis Can Make It A Little Simpler – Science 2.0

“Imagine having to identify all the cities in the world, without having access to a map. A huge task”, says Rodriguez. “We therefore identified a heuristic, that is, a simple rule or a sort of shortcut to achieve the result”.”

Goosebump sensor developed by Korean research team – Leo Kelion – BBC News

“It works by recording a drop in the sensor’s capacitance – its ability to store an electrical charge – caused by it being deformed by the buckling of the skin’s surface.”

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 10.33.56 PMChimps like listening to music with a different beat – Science Daily

“While preferring silence to music from the West, chimpanzees apparently like to listen to the different rhythms of music from Africa and India, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.”


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