Microbiology is the study of organisms that are too small to be seen with the naked eye. This includes organisms like bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and others.

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What is the mechanism of oxygen uptake in E. coli?

How does E. coli uptake oxygen? Most of the literature I found is concerned with response to oxygen level supplied in the medium, as opposed to how much is actually transported inside. Can they shut ...
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Are all known germs benign in small enough quantities? i.e. Why do we wash our hands?

We know that we wash our hands because germs can get into our body through the nose, the mouth, the eyes, cuts, etc. But I doubt we can completely clean our hands of germs every time we wash them, ...
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230 views

How many different protein coding genes are in the Human Biome?

There are approximately 20k protein-coding genes found in the human genome. This number is presumably very small when considering all the genomes found in the diverse microbes associated with the ...
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381 views

What do you call a virus when it's cured?

When a cure has been found for a virus, can it be called such anymore? Virus implies it's something you've contracted that you just have to live with until (hopefully) your body can overwhelm and ...
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29 views

Re-solidify disturbed agar plates

I am stuck in trouble while pouring LB agar onto my petri dishes. I had to add kanamycin to my plates just before it started to solidify, out of forgetfulness, which I tried to mix using the tip. The ...
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81 views

Are there any bacteria, in our environment, able to break down nitrate under aerobic conditions?

Given a fix volume of water saturated with dissolved oxygen through aeration. Suppose that ammonium, Nitrosomonas, and Nitrobacter are always available in the water. We know that some of the ammonium ...
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Does making yogurt from non-pasteurized milk work against possible disease bacteria?

In the past, when there was no pasteurization, could making yogurt from milk lower the chance of getting infected by bovine tuberculosis (or other diseases from infected milk)? For example, would ...
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81 views

DpnI over-digestion

We have a long protocol that we are optimizing that includes DpnI digestion of a PCR product (to remove any of the template DNA if it's methylated, and while we're not certain in the blind tests, ...
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28 views

Is the regulation of lactose operon different between Gram + and Gram -?

I know that in E. coli the lactose operon is shut down by CAP protein when binding cAMP. Is this true also for Gram positive bacteria?
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36 views

Why is the ebola virus so intense now?

So i'm looking into the ebola crisis and it seems the death toll is really getting crazy. I understand that it's a cytomegalovirus and that it basically overwhelms the immune system due to it's size ...
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82 views

Beetroot white skin mould

Does a mould make a beetroot poisonous or inedible ? Lemon's mould for instance, makes penicillin, but it's green there, and I'm allergic to penicillin, would the white mould produce penicillin too? ...
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159 views

Is every part of a virus important for replication?

Is every component of a virus absolutely essential for its infection and replication in a host cell? Or can you just have parts of it to cause infection?
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139 views

Non-monotonic knock-out effects in prokaryotes

Typically, when performing gene-knockout, the experimenters select one gene to remove/replace-with-junk and then see if the prokaryote can still undergo fission. If it continues to reproduce then the ...
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83 views

Need for proper air filter for bioreactor?

I am going to build a simple bioreactor for microalgae growth. I already have fluid filters pore size: 0.2um, diameter: 25mm https://nl.vwr.com/app/catalog/Product?article_number=514-4039 I wonder ...
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149 views

Vigorous shaking for HFR interrupted mating

I am trying to reproduce E. coli interrupted mating using an HFR strain, and I read that the cultures should be vigorously shaken at times to interrupt the DNA transfer from the F+(HFR) donors to the ...
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59 views

What is this fuzzy, black fungus that grew on my plates in the 4C room?

I often find the fungus below growing on my (ostensibly) sterile plates in the 4C room. Presumably it takes a few days to reach this size. The colony looks puffy and dimpled in the middle, like a ...
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36 views

Can a plate with incompletely filled LB agar be used?

I am falling short of LB agar plates and I have a plate with less LB agar poured. I meant, the plate is not fully filled with the agar (it was the last plate I poured the medium into). Some part of ...
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63 views

Consumption of NAD+ in glycolysis

Out of 10 steps in glycolysis, only one reaction- Glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate (G3P) to 1,3-bisphosphoglycerate (PGP), uses NAD+ and thereby producing NADH. Furthermore, this very step is solely ...
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Why do 6-8% of diphtheria patients do not develop natural immunity after being affected?

I am thinking of why some patients do not have natural immunity after exposure to the A-B toxin of diphthria. I think the A-B exotoxin is the key factor causing this disease and should trigger memory ...
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Why do kefir grains stop growing in soy milk?

Kefir is a fermented milk drink made with kefir grains. It usually is prepared by inoculating cow, goat or sheep milk with kefir grains. I would like to prepare the drink with soy milk, which worked ...
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85 views

Is there a difference between drinking water straight from the tap compared to leaving it to sit?

An idle question - if a glass if filled from the tap and consumed immediately, it contains some dissolved oxygen from the physical process of moving through the pipes & tap. If left out ...
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55 views

Can we attack viruses by attaching proteins and such to their shells?

Haven't looked into this to very long, but an initial search didn't return anything. HIV uses certain co-receptors to enter our cells. Could we flood the blood stream with specially designed ...
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68 views

What is “bacto” peptone?

Standard recipes for yeast medium often include "bacto-peptone". Is this the same as bacteriological peptone? Is there an authoritative source that spells it out?
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73 views

When might an inhibitor of bacterial transformation be useful?

I am part of a project elucidating some structures that are required for bacterial transformation. We have the opportunity to screen inhibitors of the system to stop it from functioning. I am not a ...
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277 views

How do I measure bacterial growth in agar dishes (either by cell mass or by cell count)?

I am doing an experiment in which I am growing S. mutans in agar dishes, and I am not sure how I would measure the growth of the S. mutans. I am also not sure if I would do this by measuring cell mass ...
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219 views

Factor causing Methicilin-resistance in MRSA?

I think the main reason is the natural selection that is causing methicillin-resistance. However, I am not completely sure what this means practically. Here, the original question: MRSA was isolated ...
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730 views

Is it possible for a person to become “reinfected” with the same strain of a virus?

If a person contracts a virus, viral conjunctivitis for example, is it possible for the individual to become "reinfected" with the exact same strain of the virus once the person has it treated and the ...
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145 views

What molecular processes are involved in pseudopodial extension?

I am curious as to the processes and mechanisms involved in the extension of pseudopodia in amoeba. How does the cell know and control the direction and extent of pseudopodia formation at a molecular ...
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609 views

“Acellular” designation for organisms

Why do some biologists refer to single-celled organisms such as Amoeba and Paramecium as acellular (i.e., without cells) rather than unicellular (i.e., one cell)?
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48 views

Did the Britons 100 years ago have different intestinal flora and fauna?

Note: this is not a question about history, but about human digestive system over time :) I know a lot of colleagues who traveled for business trips to India. All of them caught terrible diarrhea ...
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64 views

Organisms in food deposits

I have just discovered that my kitchen sink pipe has been leaking for quite some time (possibly months) which has resulted in water and food deposits collecting in my cupboard. I smeared some of the ...
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69 views

How does sucrose protect bacterial cells in lysozyme solutions?

I have a microbiology question. When we put bacterial cells in sucrose solution with concentration higher than 0.5M we observe plasmolysis - the cytoplasmic membrane detaches from the cell wall due ...
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143 views

By what mechanism is Streptococcus bovis acting as a risk factor for colorectal cancer?

Streptococcus bovis bacteremia/endocarditis is considered a risk factor for colorectal cancer. What pathophysiological mechanism may link the two together?
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327 views

How was the diversity between ethanol fermentation and lactic acid fermentation evolved?

Quite simply, some organisms metabolize glucose under anaerobic conditions via Glucose->(2) Pyruvic Acid->(2)Ethyl Alcohol. Some organisms, however, metabolize to lactic acid. When did such a process ...
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171 views

For people who work in microbiology labs, what software do you use to manage your strains?

It's just a small microbiology lab that currently records everything on paper, and there's quite few mutants as well. Is Excel commonly used for this sort of thing? Or is there a better software to ...
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108 views

Highly spherical Radiolaria; does this image accurately depict the organism?

If I understand correctly, Cenosphaera spp. is a type of Radiolaria, which is a type of zooplankton. The following is an image of Cenosphaera spp. is from the supplementary material (Figure S2) of ...
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308 views

Can Naegleria fowleri enter through the eyes ( example rinsing/splashing eyes with water)

I understand that it primarily enters the body through the nose by by "feeding on the olfactory neurons in the nose" as answered here in a different question. Would the nerve cells in the eyes present ...
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225 views

Short-term Lamarckism in asexual single cell organisms

I was reading through the Karr et al. (2012) whole-cell computational model. One of the things they did was to induce single-gene disruptions in their model. They observed several to be fatal, but: ...
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Can someone explain the color-changing unit (CCU) to me?

I've been physically carrying out serial tenfold dilutions on samples of Ureaplasma to work out the color-changing units (CCU). As a definition, the CCU is the highest dilution at which there is a ...
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Can Listeria monocytogenes endotoxin act as an A-B toxin?

I think no, but I am not sure since Listeria is Gram-positive and probably has lipopolysaccharide (exception among Gram positive bacteria). Can Listeria monocytogenes' endotoxin act like exotoxin ...
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197 views

What type of photosynthesis is performed by phytoplankton?

I am not a biologist, but I know there exist three variants of photosynthesis, namely C3, C4 and CAM. I would like to know what type is used by the ocean's phytoplankton? It might also be that ...
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1answer
192 views

Where would Saccharomyces cerevisiae be found in highest concentrations in environment?

I have bakers asthma specifically to 'Sc' yeast, and know to avoid bakeries, breweries, etc... I have figured out to not disturb rotting leaf piles, and fermenting bark mulch. Where else? What ...
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54 views

Use of salt as preservative

I know that salt is used as preservative as it dehydrates microbes. Is there any other advantage like - altering pH or inactivating microbial enzymes ?
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144 views

How to learn biomathematics?

I'm currently an undergraduate math student and researching on the internet I discover that exists an area called "biomathematics". Looks so interesting. They use the graph theory and topology to ...
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61 views

If someone were to die on the moon, would their body decay? [closed]

I heard that the footprints of Neil Armstrong are still there, so I was wondering if someone were to die there, would they remain preserved, too? If not how long would it take for them to decay?
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86 views

Anaerobic respiration choice in E. coli

Under anaerobic conditions E. coli has two options to generate ATP: fermentation (substrate-level phosphorylation), and respiration (proton gradient, chemisomotic phosphorylation). Which is favored? ...
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77 views

Why does the mixture of infant formula with saliva provide an ideal breeding ground for disease-causing micro-organisms?

From: http://www.nal.usda.gov/wicworks/Topics/FG/Chapter4_InfantFormulaFeeding.pdf Discard any infant formula remaining after a feeding. The mixture of infant formula with saliva provides an ideal ...
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480 views

Can Naegleria fowleri enter through your ear?

Is it possible to get infected with the amoeba, Naegleria fowleri, through your ears, or is the nose the only way it can enter to cause infection? How commonly is it found in your stool as well?
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What does it mean to perform in vitro experiments with mutant bacteria?

I came across the following sentence while reading the paper: Nanchen, Annik, et al. "Cyclic AMP-dependent catabolite repression is the dominant control mechanism of metabolic fluxes under glucose ...
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77 views

Do bacteria with capsular antigen always have a capsule?

Assume some bacteria have capsular antigen. Do these bacteria always have a capsule? I think not, I think the antigen only makes it possible.