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10 votes

Why are O-antigens and H-antigens on (certain) bacteria called O and H?

The "H" and "O" identifiers first appeared in German-language publications around 1920 to describe different forms of disease-causing bacilli. Thankfully, Arkwright and Goyle ...
acvill's user avatar
  • 8,296
7 votes

What really causes the toxicity of wrongly-thawed meat?

This is a really fascinating question and got me reading stuff all through the night. If my response seems tl;dr, then please skip to the fourth paragraph. From what I've found in literature, it may ...
Krzysztof Czarnecki's user avatar
5 votes

Why is bacterial meningitis worse than viral meningitis?

One needs to be careful making broad generalizations about meningitis. The term simply refers to inflammation of the meninges (the outer layer surrounding the brain and spinal cord). Meningitis can ...
Harry Vervet's user avatar
  • 2,482
3 votes

Any studies on the effects and/or benefits of oil pulling?

This is a classical pseudoscientific claim: It is supposed to help against everything, including AIDS, Diabetes, Bronchitis, Cancer and so on. See for example this table I found online: First, there ...
Chris's user avatar
  • 51.7k
3 votes

Will meat rot in alcohol below freezing?

A chemist's perspective: Ethanol and water are miscible, meaning they are perfectly soluble in one another in all proportions. So given enough time, the alcohol will likely seep into the tissues and ...
electronpusher's user avatar
2 votes

How does Vibrio cholerae benefit from infecting its host?

After V.cholerae gets into the human intestine it starts to multiply its numbers, and then becomes virulent after sufficiently expanding its numbers. This virulence drives the diarrhea which in part ...
The Nightman's user avatar
  • 1,836
2 votes

What is one Botulinum toxin medical unit?

A Botox unit is essentially a measure of a defined amount of biological activity and corresponds to a fixed number of botulinum toxin molecules. The biological potency of these preparations is ...
Beautymedi's user avatar
2 votes

Why do bulls-eye rashes look like they do?

The spreading of the rash is caused by dissemination (migration) of the Lyme spirochetes (Borrelia) through the skin out from the initial site of infection. The spirochetes trigger a immune reaction ...
tyersome's user avatar
  • 5,598
2 votes

Which extinction event killed the highest proportion of organisms?

This is a great question. I decided to research it and here is what I found. For some reason the GOE is not on lists of the "big 5" mass extinctions. The question is why? I think it's due to the pace ...
futurebird's user avatar
2 votes

Rice left in water for several months - what biological reactions or growths would occur?

It is likely a volatile organic compound (VOC) that is released as a by-product of microbial metabolism, although microbes can also produce some inorganic compounds, such as hydrogen sulfide (rotten ...
VVayfarer's user avatar
  • 258
2 votes

Can consuming acidic drinks help kill bacteria in the stomach?

There is insufficient evidence to claim that soft drinks can kill microbes in the human gut; sugar in them could actually stimulate their growth. Natural acidity of the gastric juice with pH 1.5-3.5 ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 8,079
1 vote

Why would it be unsafe to eat spoiled, but heated, food, but safe to drink spoiled, but chlorine purified water?

To some extent you can eat heated spoiled food (the point of cooking really). I recall a concentration camp in France where inmates received sporadically tuberculosis infected dead cows, which they ...
Cobactan's user avatar
  • 243
1 vote

How to reduce the quantity of (carcinogenic) mycotoxins in oatmeal?

So far, the applications for the control of aflatoxins in food are experimental; and they require further evaluation by researchers. However, the use of basic products has been used and tested in ...
Katherin Castro-Ríos's user avatar
1 vote

Winogradsky column and hydrogen sulfide

Hydrogen sulfide can be toxic at high concentrations, however, the amount that your columns will make is likely very low, and will almost certainly degrade/oxidize into something safer before it hurts ...
Maximilian Press's user avatar
1 vote

Why/How do Cyanobacteria Produce Toxins?

This available paper has some ideas, Search terms cyanotoxin and evolutionary give at least two more promising papers.
Polypipe Wrangler's user avatar
1 vote

Can storing food in a de-pressurized container result in anaerobic bacteria growth?

Any sealed container can become anaerobic relatively quickly if there are oxygen consuming organisms inside (which there probably are if it's not sterilized). So, growth of anaerobes should always be ...
MikeyC's user avatar
  • 4,734
1 vote

Can consuming acidic drinks help kill bacteria in the stomach?

I don’t know if soft drinks can help ward off bacterial infections in the stomach, however if you’re not taking antibiotics, other acidic compounds can be helpful for that. One of these is apple cider ...
betelgeuse's user avatar
1 vote

Vaccines against bacterial endotoxins

There are several papers that use alkaline hydrolysis to delipidate or "detoxify" the endotoxin for use as a vaccine (1, 2, 3). The point of many of these papers is to develop a detoxified LPS (dLPS) ...
CKM's user avatar
  • 8,109
1 vote

Why does V. cholerae produce a human specific choleragen?

Vibrio cholerae originated in the Sundarbans, a very large wetland at the mouth of the Bay of Bengal. Although it can exist as free living, it is much more fecund when associated with tiny crustaceans ...
bpedit's user avatar
  • 1,351

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