Loading page

Why Scientists Have Been Scared Of Space Germs For Almost 50 Years

The 1967 Outer Space Treaty was one of the few things the US and the Soviet Union managed to agree on at the height of the Cold War. Among other things, it forbid both nations from bringing space microbes back to Earth, or spreading Earth germs to other planets.

Meanwhile In The Future: When Antiobiotics Stop Working

This week’s episode of Meanwhile in the Future gets very scary, very quickly. And we’re not going all that far into the future, either. We’re already starting to see the beginnings of an age without antibiotics. So what does a world without these drugs look like? Listen to find out.

Chlorine Treatment Can Accelerate Antibiotic Resistance, Study Says

As anyone who’s ever owned a pet fish or gone to a public swimming pool knows, chlorine is commonly used to disinfect water. Ironically, when it comes to sewage treatment, it may be doing just the opposite.

Ancient Microbes May Have Created The World's Largest Gold Mines

Nearly half the gold ever mined comes from the Witwatersrand Basin, a layer of gold-flecked rock that spreads out under South Africa. The mines there are famously deep and prolific. Why is there so much gold concentrated in this one small part of the Earth’s crust?

What Happens To Bacteria In Space?

In the otherwise barren space 350km above Earth’s surface, a capsule of life-sustaining oxygen and water orbits at 27,000km/h. You might know this capsule as the International Space Station (ISS), currently home to six humans — and untold billions of bacteria. Microbes have always followed us to the frontiers, but it’s only now that scientists at NASA and elsewhere are seriously investigating what happens when we bring Earth’s microbes into space.

Super-Bugs Inadvertently Created By Spacecrafts Protocols

The European Space Agency has been collecting examples of “spacecraft-associated biology” in a small collection housed at the Leibniz-Institut DSMZ in Brunswick, Germany. 298 strains of “extremotolerant” bacteria, isolated from spacecraft-assembly rooms because they managed to survive the incredible methods used to clean spacecraft, are now being studied for their biological insight. How on earth can they still be alive?

Gassy Alaskan Microbes Are Warming Up The Planet

When most of us wake up, we don’t turn to our loved ones or think about the day ahead. Nope, we let off some gas. Turns out microorganisms are just the same, only their gas might have a dramatic effect on global warming.

Bacteria May Be The Ultimate Hail, Snow And Rain Makers

Bacteria are literally everywhere. They can be found on your skin, the table where you eat and the soil under your feet. Some lofty bacteria even live in the clouds where they may be responsible for making it hail, snow or rain.

Vampire Microbe Loves Human Blood

Friends, this is Staphylococcus aureus. Staphylococcus aureus, here are some victims. You probably already knew each other. After all, the bacteria – origin of the MRSA superbug – lives in the nasal cavity of one third of all humans. Now scientists know why.

Hints Of Life Found On Saturn Moon

Two potential signatures of life on Saturn’s moon Titan have been found by the Cassini spacecraft. But scientists are quick to point out that non-biological chemical reactions could also be behind the observations.

Loading page