Thousands of unknown viruses found in raw sewage

Viruses often tend to be overlooked in microbiological surveys of the built environment.  This is because they don’t show up in either culture-based methods (which are specific to bacteria or fungi) or the commonly employed newer technique of ribosomal RNA sequencing (because viruses don’t have ribosomes).  Even in metagenomic analyses where viral sequences are present …

Construction of new roads aids dispersal of antibiotic resistant bacteria

This story isn’t so much about the microbiology of the built environment… it’s more about the effect of the built environment on microbiology. A group of researchers from various institutions recently examined the effects of new road construction on the dispersal of antibiotic-resistant bacteria (E. coli in this case).  While perhaps not surprising that the …

Of potential microBEnet interest: designing the microbial research commons

Just had a quick glance at this: Designing the Microbial Research Commons: Proceedings of an International Workshop. Hal Levin sent me the link and it certainly seems interesting.  I am going to have to peruse it a bit more but it seems of relevance to the microBEnet community so I thought I would post about it. …

Interesting concept, confused reporting on beneficial bacteria indoors

I’ve posted several times in the past about various beneficial uses of bacteria in the built environment, including remediation of art and the idea of probiotics for buildings. Today I saw a story about using beneficial bacteria in cleaning liquid, which supposedly “reduced bad bacteria by 1,000-fold compared with standard cleaning techniques”.  Sounds interesting. Where …

‘Bring us your dirt’ — Exposure Society “citizen science”

The International Society of Exposure Science, ISES, will hold its annual conference October 23-27 in Baltimore. The Society has invited all participants to bring dust samples for its Metals in Dust Samples Study. “A special ISES Metals in House Dust Study will analyze house dust samples supplied by the meeting attendees and report results at …

Probiotics for buildings: A potential future application of current work on microbes in buildings

Year 2030 1:  Construct a building 2: Spray bacteria and fungi all around the building 3: Wait a few weeks and then open for business Sound crazy?  Not necessarily.  This scenario, or something like it, is the kind of application that could theoretically come out of current studies on the microbiology of the built environment. …