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Copper reduces infection risk by more than 40 percent

July 01, 2011 - Professor Bill Keevil, Head of the Microbiology Group and Director of the Environmental Healthcare Unit at the University of Southampton, has presented research into the mechanism by which copper exerts its antimicrobial effect on antibiotic-resistant organisms at the World Health Organization's first International Conference on Prevention and Infection Control (ICPIC).

'New Insights into the Antimicrobial Mechanisms of Copper Touch Surfaces' observes the survival of pathogens on conventional hospital touch surfaces contributes to increasing incidence and spread of antibiotic resistance and infections.

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Virus-bacterium associations were examined in the natural environment of a termite's hindgut.
When Viruses Infect Bacteria

June 30, 2011 - Viruses are the most abundant parasites on Earth.

Well known viruses, such as the flu virus, attack human hosts, while viruses such as the tobacco mosaic virus infect plant hosts.

More common, but less understood, are cases of viruses infecting bacteria known as bacteriophages, or phages.

In part, this is due to the difficulty of culturing bacteria and viruses that have been cut off from their usual biological surroundings in a process called in vitro.

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The results screen on the smartphone showing maps for position and size of the cataract.

Radar for the human eye

July 01, 2011 - Cataracts are the leading cause of preventable blindness worldwide.

But the standard test to detect the cloudy patches in the eye’s lens requires a $5,000 piece of equipment called a slit lamp, and a trained physician to interpret its results — two things that are often not available in rural and less-affluent parts of the world.

But a team of MIT researchers has now developed a simple device that can clip onto an ordinary smartphone (or smart device such as an iPod) and provide a diagnosis of cataracts within a few minutes.

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