Smallpox 40 years on

Today marks the 40th anniversary of the last recorded fatal case of smallpox, the first disease to be eradicated through vaccination. Smallpox is caused by the Variola virus, and was the first virus to be targeted by vaccination. It is a highly contagious Poxvirus, transmitted by airborne virus particles, and has around 30% mortality rate. … Continue reading Smallpox 40 years on

Advertisements

Bombali ebolavirus: The newest species of Ebolavirus

Prior to the 2013-2016 Ebola pandemic, few people were aware of the Ebolavirus genus of viruses. However, just days after the announcement that the most recent outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo had ended, the government of Sierra Leone announced the discovery of a sixth species of ebolavirus.   What are the Ebolaviruses? Ebolaviruses … Continue reading Bombali ebolavirus: The newest species of Ebolavirus

Frozen in time: living ancient worms found in permafrost

The arctic permafrost, a frozen landscape that has existed since the ice age, is an invaluable resource for study the climates and landscapes of the past. Organic matter from animals and plants is cryogenically preserved, giving scientists a window in the past conditions of the Earth over tens of thousands of years. Recently, it was … Continue reading Frozen in time: living ancient worms found in permafrost

Virological EVE: Excavating ancient viruses using paleovirology

Paleontology vs Paleovirology -what's the difference? A lot of people will be familiar with the term 'paleontology'. We can study the evolution of plants, animals, and even some bacteria through the examination of their fossilised remains over millions of years, and trace their evolution through to modern-day species. However, this is not possible with viruses. … Continue reading Virological EVE: Excavating ancient viruses using paleovirology

Women in Science: Mary Anning (and Dorothy Hodgkin)

Just wanted to share these wonderful postcards celebrating the work of scientists! Aren't they cool? I've already written a post about Dorothy Hodgkin, but thought I'd include some more information about Mary Anning: Mary Anning lived on the Jurassic coast in Dorset, and is responsible for some of the most important paleontological finds in the … Continue reading Women in Science: Mary Anning (and Dorothy Hodgkin)

The Yak is Back

Hi everyone, It's been quite some time since I last posted... However, I plan to pick up this blog, and continue talking about all the new things that are occurring in science!   #TheYakIsBack

Women in science: Francoise Barre-Sinoussi

This next instalment is about a scientist who has spent her career researching HIV Françoise Barre-Sinoussi  Worked at the Institut Pasteur, studying retroviruses, and did a PhD supervised by Jean-Claude Chermann in 1974. Won the Nobel prize for Physiology or Medicine in 2008, alongside Luc Montagnier and Harald zur Hausen, for the discovery of human … Continue reading Women in science: Francoise Barre-Sinoussi

Women in Science: Rosalind Franklin

Rosalind Franklin Franklin studied Natural Sciences at Newnham college, Cambridge She was a chemist by profession - she got a research fellowship at Cambridge after graduation, during which she earned a PhD. Franklin worked as an X-ray crystallographer (a technique also used by Dorothy Hodgkin), and contributed towards the discovery of the structure of DNA. The Nobel Prize … Continue reading Women in Science: Rosalind Franklin