Bats with white-nose syndrome prefer suboptimal habitats despite the consequences

IMAGE: Four little brown bats. Photo courtesy of Joseph Hoyt of Virginia Tech view more  Credit: Joseph Hoyt of Virginia Tech Since 2006, a fungal disease called white-nose syndrome has caused sharp declines in bat populations across the eastern United States. The fungus that causes the disease, Pseudogymnoascus destructans, thrives in subterranean habitats where bats hibernate […]

Gut cells sound the alarm when parasites invade

To effectively combat an infection, the body first has to sense it’s been invaded, then the affected tissue must send out signals to corral resources to fight the intruder. Knowing more about these early stages of pathogen recognition and response may provide scientists with crucial clues when it comes to preventing infections or treating inflammatory […]

Asian tiger mosquito poses low risk for Zika virus outbreaks

IMAGE: A blood engorged Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) taking its blood meal on a human arm. view more  Credit: Albin Fontaine and Céline Jourdan, 2020 (CCBY 2.0) The Asian tiger mosquito does not pose a major risk for Zika virus epidemics, according to a study published December 31 in the open-access journal PLOS Pathogens by […]

Genetic engineering without unwanted side effects helps fight parasites

Around a third of the world’s population carries Toxoplasma gondii, a parasite that puts people with a weakened immune system at risk and can trigger malformations in the womb. The single-celled pathogen also leads to economic losses in agriculture, with toxoplasmosis increasing the risk of abortion among sheep, for example. The parasite has a complex […]

Fan mussel larval dispersal for the future of an endangered species

IMAGE: Protecting the marine areas that distribute larvae will be decisive for the future of the species in the Mediterranean. view more  Credit: Diego Kersting (UB-IRBio) Fan mussel populations -the biggest bivalve mussel in the Mediterranean- are endangered due to the severe parasitosis caused by the protozoan Haplospridium pinnae since 2016. Now, a study published in […]

Coral researchers find link between bacterial genus and disease susceptibility

IMAGE: Healthy and diseased Acropora cervicornis (OSU College of Science) view more  Credit: (OSU College of Science) CORVALLIS, Ore. – Corals that appear healthy are more prone to getting sick when they’re home to too many parasitic bacteria, new research at Oregon State University shows. Supported by the National Science Foundation, the study, published in Environmental […]