What happened to make plague able to cause devastating epidemics, as in this depiction from 1349?
Pierart dou Tielt/Wikimedia
People caught and died from plague long before it caused major epidemics like the Black Death in the middle ages. Could what scientists call cultural resistance be what kept the disease under control?
The Bubonic plague slowed urbanisation, industrial development and economic growth in Europe for many years.
Despite being so small they can't be seen with the naked eye, pathogens that cause human disease have greatly affected the way humans live for centuries.
It’s the ability of our immune system to remember past infections, and pass this memory on to our kids, that allows us to survive infectious diseases.
With so many microbes capable of hijacking and destroying us, how are we, as a species, still enduring?
Yersinia pestis bacteria start to target the lungs and become so deadly?
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
It's a deadly bacterium that can spread like wildfire. New research suggests Yersinia pestis first developed its ability to cause lung infection and then evolved to be highly infectious.
At least we won’t have to queue at the job centre when this is over.
The plague known as the Black Death which tore through 14th century Europe is traditionally held to have had at least one upside. Women, the theory runs, were able to exploit the labour shortages of post-plague…
We may have pinpointed the event that started modern Y. pestis epidemics.
Could contemporary plague outbreaks such as those that have hit Peru and the USA have their origins in the medieval era? It would seem so. A paper published in Nature today reports a genome sequence taken…