Microbiome digest, 31 October 2014

Happy Halloween! Today we have fungal communities in mammals, more on the TMAO story, some microbiome reviews, honey bee colonization, and microbophobia papers.

General human/mammalian microbiome

* Richness and diversity of mammalian fungal communities shape innate and adaptive immunity in health and disease – Lisa Rizzetto, Carlotta De Filippo and Duccio Cavalieri – European Journal of Immunology

“In this review, we describe the ecology and the human niches of our fungal “fellow travelers” in both health and disease, discriminating between passengers, colonizers, and pathogens based on the interaction of these fungi with the human immune system.”

Prognostic Value of Elevated Levels of Intestinal Microbe-Generated Metabolite Trimethylamine-N-Oxide in Patients With Heart Failure – Refining the Gut Hypothesis – W.H. Wilson Tang – Journal of the American College of Cardiology

“High TMAO levels were observed in patients with HF, and elevated TMAO levels portended higher long-term mortality risk independent of traditional risk factors and cardiorenal indexes.”

* Deciphering the human microbiome using next-generation sequencing data and bioinformatics approaches – Yihwan Kim – Methods

“This review examines computational methods that are valuable for the analysis of human microbiome, and highlights the results of several large-scale human microbiome studies.”

Human gut microbiome

Novel opportunities for the exploitation of host–microbiome interactions in the intestine – Ingmar JJ Claes – Current Opinion in Biotechnology

“New sequencing technologies have dramatically increased our knowledge on the composition of the human intestinal microbiota in health and disease. ”

Animal microbiome

* Routes of Acquisition of the Gut Microbiota of the Honey Bee Apis mellifera – J. Elijah Powell – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“Colonization patterns were evaluated using quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) to assess community sizes and using deep sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons to assess community composition.”

Soil microbiome 

Landscape-scale Variation in Pathogen-suppressive Bacteria in Tropical Dry Forest Soils of Costa Rica – Kristen K. Becklund – Biotropica

“To estimate the potential for disease suppression among Streptomyces communities in tropical dry forests, we cultured soil-borne Streptomyces from plots in two forests in northwestern Costa Rica (Santa Rosa and Palo Verde)”

Microbes in the news

More scary than Halloween: this month in germophobia microbophobia – Jonathan Eisen – MicroBEnet

“It seems that any time a holiday comes around in the US, the press starts to ramp up the writing of stories about evil microbes that are lurking all around us. “

MSU and Detroit analyze tiny bacteria to investigate murders – Kate Wells – Michigan Rado

““Can we use these communities to identify whether a person is from a certain location or if they’ve been to a location?” asks Benbow”

Science and career

Satire: Sixth Person Dies As Another “Dance Your PhD” Video Goes Wrong – The Allium

“Principal Investigator, Professor Tom Morrow (61) slipped as he was mimicking a helix-turn-helix motif as part of a much larger transcription factor protein.”

10 Creative Careers That Rely on Science and Math – Alexandra Ossola – The Atlantic

“Knowledge of STEM subjects isn’t just essential for physicists or computer engineers. Fashion designers, zookeepers, and deep-sea divers also use it every day.”

Bik’s Picks

Lava Flow In Hawaii Spares Homes, But Threatens To Cut Off Community – Scott Neuman – NPR

“Officials in Hawaii are sending National Guard troops to the town of Pahoa on the Big Island, where a lava flow is creeping toward a main road, threatening to cut off the community.”

100-Year-Old Time Capsule Discovered – Clapway

“A 100-year old time capsule was found at Baltimore’s Washington Monument during a restoration project. And it seems officials are hesitant to even open it because of how old it is.”

Researchers: Science says girls’ sexualized Halloween costumes are scary – Rebecca C Bigler and Sarah McKenney – Dallas News

“Parents could also foster girls’ creativity by encouraging them to make their own costumes. “

And, related to the post above, make sure to read the hilarious comments here:
Delicious Women’s Phd Darling Sexy Costume – Amazon

“Sexy graduation gown is a micro mini with zip up front. Gold sash, hat, and diploma included”