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 difference between a spore and a cyst?

Last year I read a course in biology. During that course I learnt that Protozoa like Lamblia intestinalis or Entamoeba hystolitica form cysts in unfavourable conditions. This year I read a course in ...
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127 views

How small does a nanobot have to be to “swim through the brain” and access any neuron it wants to?

I read on this question What is in the space between neurons in a brain? that there is actually not much empty space in a brain. But my question is slightly different. Is there a visual demonstration ...
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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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33 views

How long can you effectively store a glycerol stock at -20 degrees Celsius?

I know that glycerol stocks are typically kept in a -80 °C freezer, however there are some people who do not have access to such equipment. How long would you be able to keep a glycerol stock at ...
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87 views

How does botulinum toxin enter the blood stream from the digestive tract?

To my understanding, large polypeptides such as botulinum toxin cannot pass the intestinal lining intact. How, then, can it enter the bloodstream and cause botulism poisoning?
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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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92 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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658 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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551 views

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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237 views

How sterile is working next to a bunsen burner?

When I was still doing lab work, many people would just wear gloves and work next to a bunsen burner because the clean benches were all in use. This was mostly for plating bacteria like Bacillus ...
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268 views

What are the most important factors influencing a person’s gut microbes?

You are your bacteria! The probiotics and the antibiotics... There has been on going discussions about how our gut bacteria is important for a healthy lifestyle. Figure 1: Schematic diagram ...
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100 views

Is there any way the food industry can benefit from biofilms?

I realize all of the disadvantages, but I am wondering if the food industry can actually benefit from the formation of biofilms.
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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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59 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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294 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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66 views

How can I make sure my UV-purificator kills bacteria?

I'm going to show a UV-purificator for water on science fair. How can I easily check if purificator kills most of the bacteria? I need a quick and possibly easy method.
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Why lab technicians use indirect (antibody reaction) method for diagnosing?

In microbiology we have two types of microbial diagnosis. The direct method is where we detect the invader's DNA, Antigens or culture to see the exact pathogen while the second, indirect, method is ...
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85 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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221 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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149 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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51 views

What prevent us from synthesizing a cell from “scratch”?

In this recent article "Design and synthesis of a minimal bacterial genome", they created a minimal cell with only 473 genes. However, they didn't synthesize all of the necessary components of the ...
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575 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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163 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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87 views

How can fresh cavities form at the margins of sliver amalgam fillings on teeth?

Silver amalgam fillings predominantly contain silver a known bactericidal agent and mercury which a known toxin and has bactericidal property. So how is it that the plaque bacteria survive near the ...
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210 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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What makes worms' eggs float or sink?

In parasitology while examining the stool sample, one important thing you do, is test whether the eggs float on water or sink. We never did that since our coursework limits itself to microscopic ...
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Why a particular species of bacteria give rise to particular type of colony? [closed]

Bacterial colony varies in form, elevation, margin, opacity, chromogenesis etc. What gives definite character to a colony and what is the source of all the diversity? Is the reason similar to that of ...
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What is effectiveness of methyl-alcohol as sporicide?

Methyl-alcohol is the weakest alcohol in terms of bactericidal properties. However, I have read that it also works as sporicide. What is the effectiveness of methyl-alcohol in killing the spores of ...
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When and How do pacemaker cells develop during the cell aggregation process of Dictyostelium discoideum?

I was reading a paper by Tang & Othmer about oscillations and waves in Dictyostelium discoideum. Under certain condition like starvation period in the life cycle of a Dictyostelium discoideum ...
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95 views

The ring formation of ringworm

I know ringworm is caused by a fungus on the skin, nails or scalp but what causes the rash to form as a ring instead of like a normal spread out rash?
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158 views

Identify the pink mold infecting refrigerated lemons [closed]

I made lemon juice 6 month ago. I just washed the lemon using brush and then cut them into pieces. Then I put one layer of lemon in the bottle followed by one layer of sugar Again one layer of lemon ...
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Why are viruses considered microbes?

My question is simple. Why is a virus considered a microbe? Considering a microbe is considered to be a "living" unit of life, which viruses are not.
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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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Can bacteria metabolize fatty acids for fuel?

I'm not a microbiologist, but rather a physiologist curious about microbial metabolism. Much like humans bacteria can utilize glucose, but when it comes to long chain, medium chain, or short chain ...
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581 views

Can the RNA in the HIV virus make viral enzymes without entering the nucleus?

If the provirus was not formed yet, can the virus make viral enzymes? (I know that it already has some, but supposing it doesn't)
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DNA polymerase I exonuclease activity

Does DNA polymerase I in bacteria use forward or reverse exonuclease activity to remove RNA primers? One of my books says it uses 5' to 3', but another says it uses 3' to 5' exonuclease activity. ...
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62 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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381 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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34 views

Soft Agar Substitute

I've got petri dishes with a base agar layer ready for E. coli culturing. However, I do not have soft agar in which to dilute the E. coli before pouring it on to the plate. Any suggestions on what ...
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102 views

Which literature/study/myth spurred the idea that urine is sterile?

There is a seemingly unfounded mantra that a person's urine is sterile who is not suffering from a UTI. So far I have found convincing evidence to the contrary; urine is not sterile. This poster ...
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385 views

Relationship between turgor pressure and osmotic pressure?

I would like to know if there is a relationship between osmotic pressure (inside and outside of a cell) and turgor pressure. If so, is there a way to formalize it mathematically? Thank you in ...
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Plasmid choosing

To design a experiment in feeding of C. elegans. It has to choose a plasmid vector to insert the gene of interest that can feed to C. elegans. Many paper are using pL4440 for the feeding vector, ...
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173 views

Why increasing the vector concentration does not increase the effeciency of bacterial transformation?

I was reading some old description of the protocols used for the transformation of bacterial cells. In the description I read that the transformation works best with low amount of DNA, and if we ...
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136 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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694 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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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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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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Why do cell membranes have a lipid bilayer?

Many cells have a cell membrane composed of two layers of lipids, why is it two layers and not just one? What purpose do the membranes serve?
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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 ...