So you want to run FACS on your microbiome samples…

So you want to run FACS on your microbiome samples… By Cara Pardon Although optimized for eukaryotic cell research, an increasingly common technique used in the microbiome field is Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorting (FACS).  From sorting cells for single cell genomics to identifying the host range of a plasmid; from detecting metabolically active cells in …

Two new papers exploring the characteristics of infant microbial exposures

Early-life microbial exposure has been recognized to have a crucial role in immune development. Exposure in the actual infant breathing zone (BZ), influenced by the resuspension of floor dust, however, is little explored. Two recently published papers tackle this issue by assessing infant exposure to biological particulate matter (fluorescent biological aerosol particles, FBAPs) and microbial …

Microbial biodiversity assessment of the European Space Agency’s ExoMars 2016 mission

Determining if life exists or ever existed beyond Earth is one of the most interesting scientific questions. Reports on numerous habitable planets have increased the speculations about potential extra-terrestrial life. However, these theoretically life-supporting planets are far beyond human’s reach – except Mars. In order to explore if there ever was life on Mars, the …

No – not all dogs are good for your microbiome … 

Epidemiological and other studies have shown that, on average, having a dog is correlated to some possible health benefits (e.g., see this).  And some studies have further suggested that this might be connected to “the microbiome” in that having a dog might change the microbiome of one’s surroundings and that this in turn might contribute …

Preparing for the crewed Mars journey: Microbiota dynamics in the confined Mars500 habitat during simulated Mars flight and landing

Human exploration of planet Mars has a long history with number of robotic missions surveying the Martian surface and environment, including  the Viking program (1975), the Mars Exploration Rover Mission (2003), the Phoenix lander (2008), and the Mars Science Laboratory (2012). For the future human space exploration, crewed Mars mission is considered as one of …

Aerobiota of the Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawai’i: MoBE Postdoctoral Fellowship

  The Aerobiota of the Mauna Loa Observatory (MLO), Hawai’i project will fully characterize the fungal and bacterial communities captured over the last decade by air filters at the MLO on the island of Hawai’i, one of the most remote locations on earth. It might seem odd to call a weather station in a remote …

ASM Press Release: Bacteria Fight Corrosion on Ancient Iron Artifacts

This is a cross-posting of a Press Release from the American Society for Microbiology. A team of Swiss chemists and microbiologists have shown that a species of anaerobic bacterium can inhibit corrosion on archeological artifacts made of iron. The research is published March 10 in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, a journal of the American Society …