Cool exhibit at Harvard: “Microbial Life: A Universe at the Edge of Sight.”

Neat article in the Harvard Gazette about an awesome-sounding exhibit, “Microbial Life: A Universe at the Edge of Sight.”.  Put together by Roberto Kolter and Scott Chimileski, the exhibit highlights microbial life… particularly the discoveries of microbial ecology over the last couple of decades.  Looks like a cool blend of science and art.

Fungi for self-healing concrete

So I’d heard about “self-healing” concrete using chemicals that react with water to seal cracks, I’ve even blogged about self-healing concrete using bacteria embedded into the concrete (back in 2011).  And then yesterday I came across research talking about using fungi for this purpose.   Regardless of which method ends up working, I think these are …

The Bath Toy Microbiome

I just got pointed to this article today “Ugly Ducklings – the dark side of plastic materials in contact with potable water“, along with the accompanying commentary “About duck, pipes, and microbiomes“.  I think this is a fascinating study for a few reasons.  Firstly, like probably most parents, I observed and wondered about the biofilms …

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 …

New paper: Taxonomic annotation of public fungal ITS sequences from the built environment – a report from an April 10–11, 2017 workshop (Aberdeen, UK)

The report (and the data) from our Sloan-funded taxonomic annotation workshop on fungi in the built environment was just published in MycoKeys: https://mycokeys.pensoft.net/article/20887/list/4/ Abstract Recent DNA-based studies have shown that the built environment is surprisingly rich in fungi. These indoor fungi – whether transient visitors or more persistent residents – may hold clues to the rising …

Paper of interest: Fungal Communities in Near Surface Air Are Similar across Northwestern Europe

This may be of interest: Fungal Communities Including Plant Pathogens in Near Surface Air Are Similar across Northwestern Europe Nicolaisen M, West JS, Sapkota R, Canning GGM, Schoen C and Justesen AF (2017) Fungal Communities Including Plant Pathogens in Near Surface Air Are Similar across Northwestern Europe. Front. Microbiol. 8:1729. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2017.01729 Information on the …

Worth a look: City-scale distribution & dispersal routes of mycobiome in residences.

Quick post here — prepping for #MoBE17 meeting and found this new paper.  It seems like it is worth a look: City-scale distribution and dispersal routes of mycobiome in residences: Microbiome. 2017 Oct 4;5(1):131. doi: 10.1186/s40168-017-0346-7. Abstract BACKGROUND: Pathogenic and allergenic bacteria and fungi within the indoors can bring detrimental health effects on the occupants. We …

New papers on Microbiology of the Built Environment, June 3, 2017

Microbes indoors DNA metabarcoding to assess indoor fungal communities: Electrostatic dust collectors and Illumina sequencing – Steffi Rocchi – Journal of Microbiological Methods ($39.95) Our study aimed to evaluate metabarcoding and bioinformatic analysis resulting from calibrated samples and samples collected by an electrostatic dust collector (EDC) in dwellings with no moisture problems. Thus, the fungal communities of …

When a humongous amount of fungus among us is not a good thing …

OK – full blown mushrooms are not microbes.  But they are fungi.  And a lot of fungi are microbial.  So I am ignoring the multicellular nature of these mushrooms here – after all – nobody’s perfect.  Anyway – thought this might be of interest to those thinking about fungi in the built environment. Source: UPDATE: City …