Legendrea loyezae, a very rare ciliate that lives in oxygen-free sediments of lakes.
Microbes are so tiny humans can’t see them without special equipment. But the discovery of 20 new species will help scientists map the evolutionary tree of life.
As a material, bacteria’s ability to rapidly multiply and adapt to different conditions is an asset.
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The walls of your house could someday be built with living bacteria. Synthetic biologists are engineering microbes into living materials that are cheap and sustainable.
The pumpkin on the right has a fungal disease known as black rot.
Don’t let microbes and insects turn your Halloween masterpiece into a horror show before the big night.
Wood feeding termites (
Microcerotermes spp) inside their nest.
Termites are about to experience a significant global expansion in their prime habitat, thanks to climate change. Here’s what that means for deadwood.
There are numerous ways for antibiotic-resistant microbes to enter the human body.
Antimicrobial resistance is a growing threat. Here’s how resistant genes sneak into human guts via wastewater, food and other routes.
Science shows that humans are happier and healthier around other animal and plant species.
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People wouldn’t last long without the countless other species we depend on for survival.
Investigators in Florida traced a listeria outbreak to ice cream.
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Listeria causes serious illness and food recalls nearly every year.
You and the trillions of microbes in your gut can live in harmony.
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The types of microbes residing in your gut can affect your mental and physical health. Home microbiome tests promise to help consumers improve the composition of their gut microbes.
Without obvious signs of contamination like the mold in this jam, consumers use expiration dates to decide whether to keep or throw away food.
Ralf Geithe via iStock/Getty Images
Current expiration date system leads to confused consumers and wasted food.
Plastic trash accumulates in trees and shrubs along the Los Angeles River.
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Plastic is made from oil and natural gas, which started out as fossilized plant and animal material. But buried deep underground for millions of years, those materials changed in important ways.
Toe jam was mentioned in a song by The Beatles. Maybe they knew a thing or two about foot hygiene.
Permafrost and ice wedges have built up over millennia in the Arctic. When they thaw, they destabilize the surrounding landscape.
Michael Robinson Chavez/The Washington Post via Getty Images
Ground is collapsing and massive lakes are draining in a matter of days. Thawing permafrost is having profound effects on the region and its infrastructure.
Fungi that live on plant roots can help with the uptake of nutrients.
Plants communicate with the fungi on their roots, but the effects on the ecosystem of deliberately adding fungi as a fertilizer are unknown — and might be harmful.
In ancient Earth’s atmosphere, microbes called acetogens were able to recycle carbon dioxide using chemical energy sources such as hydrogen.
Low-cost air-ventilation systems have been installed in many classrooms across the U.S. to help reduce COVID-19 transmission.
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Air-ventilation upgrades have been badly needed in U.S. classrooms since long before the pandemic. Low-tech filtration systems that cost about the same as a textbook per student can make a big difference.
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We can fine-tune bacteria using algorithms to help them produce the things we need, from antibiotics to methane.
Spending more time in nature may be associated with less fear of germs.
A fear of microbes, like germs, could be harming human health.
A tailings pond at an oilsands facility near Fort McMurray, Alta., in July 2012. The estimated cost of reclaiming oilsands mines is almost $31 billion.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Solutions to some of the globe’s most daunting environmental challenges may be closer than you think. Scientists are harnessing nature to clean up toxic chemicals and mining waste.
With an average shelf life of nine years, the coming tsunami of waste EV batteries needs action now.
Glaciers aren’t sterile wastelands – they’re chock-full of microscopic life.