Scientists still rely on a set of 19th century postulates to identify disease-causing organisms but more than 100 years of research shows why we need to move on.
pH. John Walter, 2017. Photograph by Jonathan Bassett.
There are many ways of visualising scientific concepts, as we discovered when an artist got in touch about some of our work.
Human poo is a concoction made up mostly of water with a sprinkling of the solid stuff.
Around 75% of our faeces is made up of water. The other 25% is the good stuff, including bacteria, viruses and undigested food.
An Atlanta hospital set up a mobile ER to deal with the large number of flu cases.
AP Photo/David Goldman
Part of the problem was a mismatch between the influenza strains circulating and the vaccine available. Here's how annual flu shots are formulated.
Monitoring sewage for virus allows for a quick public health response if any polio is detected.
AP Photo/Matt Rourke
Polio can be circulating through a community long before anyone is paralyzed. Monitoring sewage for the virus lets public health officials short-circuit this 'silent transmission.'
Pygmies in the Dzanga-Sangha Forest Reserve, Central African Republic.
Somewhere along our evolutionary path, we lost the ability to defend against hepatitis C. But not all humans lost this ability.
Every surface of our body – inside and out – is covered in microorganisms: bacteria, viruses, fungi and many other microscopic life forms.
Just because you don't have the flu doesn't mean that your aren't teeming with viruses inside and out. But what are all these viruses doing, if they aren't making you sick?
Cane toads are on the march, but new genetic research could slow them down.
New genetic knowledge about cane toads could give us the knowledge we need to throw some more roadblocks in front of this persistent invader as it marches across Australia.
Electron microscopy image of 1918 influenza virus particles near a cell.
Pandemic and bird flu viruses are more deadly than seasonal flu. Scientists may have finally discovered why.
Bejing. Bird flu is transmitted in various ways and the process needs to be studied in depth.
Sojourner in a Strange Land/Flicker
A scientific question fascinates experts : under which conditions can bird flu virus be transmitted to humans by aerial particles, and what will be the consequences for those who aren’t immune?
Many people think green snot means you are really sick, or that you need antibiotics. Not true. Green snot is actually a sign that our immune system is working and that we are getting better.
Tagged European rabbit kitten infected with myxoma virus, but that died from rabbit haemorrhagic virus disease (RHDV).
Photo by David Peacock, Biosecurity South Australia
Feral rabbits previously exposed to myxoma virus are more likely to be killed by rabbit haemorrhagic diease, meaning that these two biocontrol agents can become even more powerful when used in tandem.
Health workers get ready to spray insecticide in advance of the 2016 Summer Olympics, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to combat the mosquitoes that transmit the Zika virus in this Jan. 26, 2016 photo.
(AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)
Recent discoveries of ancient viruses are helping scientists understand their origins.
If the past is anything to go by, the DRC will effectively deal with the current Ebola outbreak. But that doesn't mean we should be complacent.
Imported frozen pomegranate seeds have been linked to hepatitis A infections in NSW.
Hepatitis A is a virus that infects the liver. Symptoms usually take 15-50 days to develop after initial infection and typically last for several weeks or sometimes longer.
Young children catch and spread the flu more than any other age group.
The flu vaccine isn't perfect but it's the best way to protect against these potentially harmful viruses. Most children aged six months to five years are eligible for a free vaccine in 2018.
Watching bacteria and viruses duke it out, evolving to outwit each other.
UC San Diego
A core idea in molecular biology is that one gene codes for one protein. Now biologists have found an example of a gene that yields two forms of a protein – enabling it to evolve new functionality.
What will it take to finish polio off in the last three countries where it persists?
AP Photo/B.K. Bangash
Pakistan had only eight new diagnoses of polio in 2017. The virus' days look numbered – but health workers have their work cut out for them to eradicate the devastating disease once and for all.
People and animals live side by side – and can have pathogens in common.
No one then knew a virus caused the 1918 flu pandemic, much less that animals can be a reservoir for human illnesses. Now virus ecology research and surveillance are key for public health efforts.
Hoverflies are helping spread disease among the already declining bee population.