Bacteria firing powerful spikes

This week we will talk about one of my favourite bacterial devices. It is the bacterial killing machine, the type 6 secretion system, that I explained in detail in my very first post Bacteria killing each other. If you don’t remember well what is was, it is worth going back to refresh your memory, as we’re now looking closer into this fascinating nanomachine. This post is based on a journal article which was just published and which I would like to share with you here. It was also the longest and most tedious chapter of my thesis, so I have … Continue reading Bacteria firing powerful spikes

At the FEMS meeting 2019

The last few days I was at Europe’s biggest conference for microbiology, the FEMS 2019. The meeting took place in Glasgow in a huge conference hall. This meeting brought together microbiologists from all over the world. All of them wanted to share their newest insights into the microbial world and to learn about what others managed to find out recently. I learned so much throughout this meeting and got some cool new ideas both for my own research but also for future blog posts. Some really interesting and a bit random concepts I want to share here. Researchers around Detmer … Continue reading At the FEMS meeting 2019

Bacteria changing blood types

In this article I want to talk about a mechanism that, when I read about it, completely fascinated me. Yes, bacteria can still amaze me with their countless abilities to affect almost everything within our body! A new study just found that bacteria are even able to change our blood type! But as always, let’s start with the basics. We have four different blood types based on the sugars that are on the surface of our blood cells (I am not going to talk about rhesus factors here). These sugar blocks are generally called antigens, because they are recognised by … Continue reading Bacteria changing blood types

How bacteria get (too) attached

As you might well be aware of by now, our body is full of bacteria. All those little bugs that usually live there are together called the human microbiota. They are the reason why you are never truly alone 😉 Basically on all our surfaces, like the skin, in our nose, mouth, in our urogenital or gastrointestinal tract live bacteria. The skin and the mucosa in our nose and mouth are like a barrier for bacteria to keep them out of our body. This means that our internal organs are basically sterile, no bacterium there to be found… Or are … Continue reading How bacteria get (too) attached