Huge bacteria-eating viruses close gap between life and non-life

Scientists have discovered hundreds of unusually large, bacteria-killing viruses with capabilities normally associated with living organisms, blurring the line between living microbes and viral machines. These phages — short for bacteriophages, so-called because they “eat” bacteria — are of a size and complexity considered typical of life, carry numerous genes normally found in bacteria and … Read more Huge bacteria-eating viruses close gap between life and non-life

Safer viruses for vaccine research and diagnosis

A new technology to produce safer ‘hybrid’ viruses at high volumes for use in vaccines and diagnostics for mosquito-borne diseases has been developed at The University of Queensland. Researchers from UQ and QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute have exploited the benign characteristics of the Binjari virus – inert to humans – to produce ‘dangerous looking’ … Read more Safer viruses for vaccine research and diagnosis

A fast and inexpensive device to capture and identify viruses

A device to quickly capture and identify various strains of virus has been developed, according to researchers at Penn State and New York University. Currently, virologists estimate that 1.67 million unknown viruses are in animals, a number of which can be transmitted to humans. Known viruses, such as H5N1, Zika and Ebola have caused widespread … Read more A fast and inexpensive device to capture and identify viruses