Welcome to the new ATCC blog!

Welcome to the new ATCC blog! We have created this forum to provide a fun and educational way for Microbiologists and Cell Biologists to learn more about the natural world and to stay connected with new and exciting topics, techniques, and best practices in science.

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In the food industry, bacterial contamination is of great concern with regard to product quality and safety. However, despite good production hygiene and the frequent use of disinfectants and biocides, spoilage and pathogenic prokaryotes are still found in food processing environments and on food products. Here, we discuss the potential application of bacteriophages in food safety.

Arthropod vectors are responsible for the transmission of some of the most devastating diseases throughout the world. The accurate diagnosis of these diseases can be complicated due to similar clinical presentations, cross-reactivity, or the possibility of co-infection. Thus, there is a need for rapid and accurate methods of detection that can reliably distinguish between causative agents. With the recent outbreak of Zika virus throughout the Americas, it has become imperative to accurately discriminate between this virus and other similar mosquito-borne viruses. Here, we will discuss the impact of vector-borne disease and the caveats of current Zika virus detection methods.

Long-term subculturing of a microbial strain poses both a risk for cross-contamination and places selective pressure on the strain’s traits, which may lead to detrimental effects such as genetic drift and phenotypic variation. Here, we will discuss the importance of standards in microbial research and assay development.

How to minimize oxygen toxicity when propagating anaerobes

By Nancy KruegerAllison Faust

Oxygen can be quite harmful and even toxic to all cells, resulting in the oxidation of membrane lipids, inactivation of enzymes, or genetic damage. Here, we discuss several defenses that bacteria have acquired to protect themselves from oxygen toxicity.