4 Ways Tiny Microbes Changed Life On Earth Forever

This is the microbes’ world — we just live in it. Throughout the history of Earth, microbes have radically reshaped life on the planet, from creating the very air we breath to wiping out almost all life on Earth. Don’t underestimate the power of tiny, tiny microbes populating the Earth trillions of times over.

Concrete-Dissolving Bacteria Are Destroying Our Sewers

Underground in places nobody likes to look, bacteria are doing terrible things to our sewage pipes. The concrete pipes that carry our waste are literally dissolving away, forcing engineers into a messy, expensive battle against tiny microbes.

This Pretty Gel Is A Smart Tag That Changes Colour When Food Spoils

Thanks to what looks like a little square of jello, you could tell your milk has gone bad without even opening the (gross-smelling) container. The gel is actually a nanorod-embedded smart tag that changes from red to green, mimicking the growth of bacteria in milk without touching it.

Why Do Bacteria Thrive In Space?

For reasons that still aren’t well understood, bacteria proliferate in microgravity. Creating a potential recipe for disaster for humans stationed in space for long periods, bacteria’s love of low-g also raises an intriguing question: Why are they so comfortable there?

Whoa, Watch Bacteria Instantly Turn Water Into Ice

Believe it or not, making ice is more complicated than just making water really cold. One thing that helps is bacteria. Yes, bacteria! In this captivatingly magic video, it takes just a second for Pseudomonas syringae to turn a whole jar of water into ice.

An Unintended Consequence Of Energy-Efficient Buildings: Toxic Mould

Energy-efficient buildings can be wonderful at keeping out drafts and keeping down heating bills. But the same air-tightness, unfortunately, is also perfect for trapping humid air where toxic mould can go to party.

How The Architecture Of Our Buildings Shapes The Germs Around Us

We design buildings to make human lives better — but should we also design them to make bacteria healthier? A new study posits just that, suggesting that the microbial communities that live amongst us are deeply influenced by the design of our buildings. Wait — but aren’t microbes bad? Not exactly.

Deadly Superbugs Are Breeding Like Crazy In Chinese Sewage Plants

Gird your immune system because what you’re about to read will make you sick. No, seriously, it’s dangerous. Contagion-level dangerous.

The World's Awesomest Scientists Invent Cavity-Free Lolly

With a breakthrough that will finally help Halloween top Christmas as the best holiday ever, scientists at the Berlin-based biotech lab Organo Balance claim to have developed a lolly that doesn’t cause cavities. You’ll still get sick and pack on the kilos from gorging on sweets, but if you forget to brush your teeth, your chompers won’t rot out of your head.

How A Pill Filled With Bacteria Could Actually Make You Better

Usually, you knock back pills packed with drugs; cocktails of chemicals which have been painstakingly proven to help make you better. Soon, though, you might be swallowing tablets filled with something you might not expect: bacteria.