Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Vincent Racaniello
10,268 followers -
Professor, virus guru, science podcaster and blogger
Professor, virus guru, science podcaster and blogger

10,268 followers
About
Vincent's posts

Post has attachment
On this week’s episode of the science show This Week in Microbiology, we reveal the DNA in the teeth of ancient humans - Homo neanderthalensis. The results suggest what individuals from different geographic locations might have eaten. Next, the discovery of new CRISPR-Cas systems from metagenomic datasets from a variety of environments. Not only are these CRISPRs new, but they can be synthesized and shown to be active in E. coli. The results highlight how new technologies for biological research and clinical applications can come from genome sequences. 

Post has attachment
On the latest episode of the science show This Week in Virology, we explore the human fecal virome - its composition and how it changes over 2.5 years. Surprising result: It's mostly bacteriophages (1000000000 per gram of feces), with no eukaryotic or Archaeal viruses found. Next, the finding that RNA interference - the production of small RNAs that target viral genomes - is an important antiviral defense in the nematode C. elegans. As for the title: try putting in some commas to change its meaning.

Post has attachment
On the latest episode of the science show This Week in Parasitism, we solve the case of the Australian Wildlife Carer. Contrary to Daniel's prediction, many people got this one - because it's a very rare case and it's been published! Daniel assures us that this week's case is 'not Google-able'. Our paper for today is about nodding disease, which has been associated with the parasitic worm that causes river blindness. It might be an autoimmune disease - some nodding patients have an antibody in the CSF that cross reacts with a cell protein and seems to be induced by infection.

Post has attachment
On the latest episode of the science show This Week in Evolution, Nels travels to New York City where we meet up with my neighbor Stephen Goff. We talk about his lab's work on transmissible cancers of molluscs - steamer clams, mussels, and other bivalve species - where the cells can travel from one clam to another! We also discuss his work on how retrovirus genomes are silenced in embryonic stem cells and beyond by proteins that bind to promoter elements and modification of histones.

Post has attachment
On the latest episode of the science show This Week in Virology, we start with a study examining the infection of wild monkeys in different parts of Africa. Next, two different types of Zika virus vaccine in development - made with RNA. We round up this science-packed episode with the discovery that a key protein that allows games to fuse during fertilization was inherited from viruses - a viral fusion protein like those that enable viruses to enter cells. 

Post has attachment
On this week's episode of the science show This Week in Virology, we explain how two bacteriophage genes can influence the reproduction of a eukaryote. The phage genes are integrated into the DNA of Wolbachia, an intracellular symbiont found in 40% of the world's arthropods. The presence of Wolbachia in males causes embryonic death when matings occur with an uninfected female. This so-called cytoplasmic incompatibility is a consequence of two bacteriophage genes present in Wolbachia. Next, we discuss how amino acid changes selected during the recent Ebolavirus outbreak in West Africa affect the activity of the viral glycoprotein. The viral endosomal receptor is Niemann-Pick C1 protein.....hence Dickson's (not Alan's) title for this episode.

Post has attachment
On the latest episode of the science show This Week in Parasitism, we solve the case of the Man Who Sat in Feces. His eosinophils were at 51% - over 9000! Hence our title. Then we turn to Dickson's favorite parasite - Trichinella - a discuss how the organism makes a collagen capsule around the nurse cell. 

Post has attachment
On this week's episode of the science show This Week in Virology, we review a mouse model for sexual transmission of Zika virus. Then we turn to a study of cultured rat neurons in which herpes simplex virus establishes latency. In this state, the viral DNA is nearly silent. It can be reactivated to proceed through the lytic program and the eventual production of infectious virus. The neat observation is that the application of interferon in the first few hours after activation can inhibit latency. Next time you get a cold sore, think this: your interferon system lost this time.

Post has attachment
On this week's episode of the science show This Week in Microbiology, we first cover a story on the discovery of prions in bacteria. These unusual proteins, which can adopt two conforomations with different functions, are best known for causing degenerative neurological diseases such as kuru, Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease, and mad cow disease. But there are many prions that are beneficial, and now we know they are also in bacteria. In our second story, we discuss a peptide produced by virus infected cells that controls whether infection leads to lysis or lysogeny. It's a form of bacteria to bacteria communication that makes an important decision based on how many live cells are present.

Post has attachment
On the latest episode of the science show This Week in Virology, I travel to the University of Wisconsin in Madison to speak with team ZEST - Zika Experimental Science Team. We discuss their macaque model for Zika virus infection and the implications of their findings. With video.
Wait while more posts are being loaded