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Old 09-25-2006, 11:10 PM
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AKA I am tired and not feeling like working on the assignment I should be working on.

Today's microbe genre is Propionibacterium. There are two main groups these bacteria fall into, a small group of human skin guess you could call pathogens, they cause acne. They grow at around 37 C (human body temp for those who aren't up on their metric) and tend to be longer than the other group. The other group consists of dairy isolates (bacteria isolated from dairy products), these bugs are the causative agent of Swiss cheese. I personally consider them to be cheese pathogens because I do not like swiss cheese. They ferment glucose (and other sugars) into propionic acid (hense their name) which is a three carbon acid (pro = three), they also produce some acetic acid (the stuff in vinegar) and carbon dioxide. The acid (specifically propionic which they make the most of) and the carbon dioxide are what cause the swiss cheese's unique charactaristics, the taste (if you can call it taste) is produced by the acid and the holes by trapped pockets of carbon dioxide. The acid also acts to inhibit some types of fungus, but definately not all since I have seen fungus on swiss cheese. The acidity in general inhibits the growth of spoilage organisms which is why swiss cheese can have a long shelf life.

These bacteria are anaerobic (they do not grow in the presense of oxygen), and the dairy isolates like it about 30-32 C, which is warm but not too hot (somewhere in the 80's I think). The dairy isolates also tend to be very short rods that look rather like cocci (sphere shape), they often form an almost lacey pattern under the scope (I would know, I have looked at hundreds slides of them). In the Gram reaction (aka Gram Stain) they stain purple, or positive. This is because they have a thick cell wall that traps the purple dye inside so it is not washed away as it is in the Gram negatives (note Gram is capitolized, the staining technique was developed by Dr. Gram). Perhaps there will be more on Gram staining some other time if anyone cares or I am bored and have time. These cells are non-motile, meaning they lack flagella and cilia and therefore cannot swim/move.

This bug was my first research organism as a grad student and almost ended up as my research organism for my graduate career, thankfully it worked out such that I found an even better one to play with.
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Old 09-30-2006, 12:56 AM
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Hmm what do I feel like today... how about Lactobacillus. Note: flora refers to a microorganism that is normally present in an environment.

Lactobacillus is a genus of Gram positive bacteria that range from being short to long rods, the ones I play with tend to be the longer ones. This genus is rather interesting, they all produce lactic acid in their metabolism, this makes their environment acidic which they do not mind too much but other organisms do, some also make antimicrobial peptides that inhibit or kill other organisms including pathogens. They are very important in food, there are some that are food spoilers, and many that are food producers (some sausages, yogurt, wierd foreign foods, cottage cheese sometimes, other fermented milk products), some are probiotic, live bacteria that give health benefits when consumed in high enough amounts, L acidophilus is a popular example. These organisms range from being completely anaerobic to being able to use oxygen (though that might be debatable, they might just tolerate oxygen and not use it). Lactobacillus is common human flora of the GI (intestinal) tract and are very important in female flora, they help keep yeast infections down (the yeast is generally there but it is inhibited by the Lactobacillus, when something disrupts the balance yeast infections occur), also in pregnant women who have a shift in their flora from Gram positive to negative tend to have issues with preterm labor and such.

This is an organism I want them to make a Giant microbe of !!! But then I want them to make most organisms ...
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Old 10-03-2006, 02:32 PM
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i feel like sleeping sickness today
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Old 10-03-2006, 10:59 PM
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Hmm, sleeping sickness. That is one I do not know too much about but here goes. It is caused by a parasite named Trypanosoma brucei, which is spread by an insect vector, the tsetse fly. It is a huge problem in parts of Africa, and causes many symptoms, including fatigue, eventually it results in coma and then death. One of the most effective ways of eliminating this disease is by controling its vector by spraying problem areas with pesticides, same with malaria which uses a kind of mosquitto as its vector.

Then there is mono, which is caused by an Epstein-Barr virus, that one often involves someone feeling very tired all the time, though it can cause problems when it causes the spleen to enlarge, in that state that organ can rupture which is very bad. My doc thought I had it but it turned out to be nothing (I told him I did not). That one can be transmitted by kissing or sharing a drink or something, which is why it is nicknamed the kissing disease.
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Old 10-04-2006, 05:52 AM
Tuburculosis
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i mean sleepy
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Old 10-04-2006, 11:55 AM
Pollock II
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kskerr
Hmm, sleeping sickness. That is one I do not know too much about but here goes. It is caused by a parasite named Trypanosoma brucei, which is spread by an insect vector, the tsetse fly. It is a huge problem in parts of Africa, and causes many symptoms, including fatigue, eventually it results in coma and then death. One of the most effective ways of eliminating this disease is by controling its vector by spraying problem areas with pesticides, same with malaria which uses a kind of mosquitto as its vector.

Then there is mono, which is caused by an Epstein-Barr virus, that one often involves someone feeling very tired all the time, though it can cause problems when it causes the spleen to enlarge, in that state that organ can rupture which is very bad. My doc thought I had it but it turned out to be nothing (I told him I did not). That one can be transmitted by kissing or sharing a drink or something, which is why it is nicknamed the kissing disease.
I've been tested for mono about 3 times now. I kept having to tell them "I don't have mono! I just stay up really late at night!" And the just wouldn't believe me.
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Old 10-04-2006, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollock II
I've been tested for mono about 3 times now. I kept having to tell them "I don't have mono! I just stay up really late at night!" And the just wouldn't believe me.
I think it is because we are college students, college students are diseased, though I informed my MD that I am a grad student not an undergrad, I think that should make a difference (I don't really interact with people while most of the undergrads do what undergrads do and have the social life thing)
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Old 10-04-2006, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kskerr
I think it is because we are college students, college students are diseased, though I informed my MD that I am a grad student not an undergrad, I think that should make a difference (I don't really interact with people while most of the undergrads do what undergrads do and have the social life thing)

I got tested 3 times between 7th grade and my senior year of high school. About the time I started learning that the world doesn't switch off after 9pm.
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Old 10-04-2006, 09:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollock II
I got tested 3 times between 7th grade and my senior year of high school. About the time I started learning that the world doesn't switch off after 9pm.
Far as I know I have only been tested the one time. Never really had much of a reason to be, lead a rather lame existance...
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Old 10-05-2006, 07:51 PM
mazuac
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i have never been tested for mono, and if i ever get it, well... please don't wupture my kidney lol the "w" in rupture is on purpose, okay!
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