Tag Archives: Microorganism

Probiotics Send Signals From Your Gut to Your Skin

Probiotics are now widely known for their beneficial role in your gut health, but emerging research further proves their benefits are not limited to your digestive tract.

Signals from these gut microorganisms are sent throughout your body and interact with organisms in your skin and gut mucosa. Researchers are now looking into how these interactions can help with skin conditions like dryness, improve collagen, or stabilize the microflora on your skin to help with irritations.

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Much more is known about how probiotics work in your gut than is known about their effects elsewhere in your body. But new research shows that there may be signals coming from these gut microorganisms that are sent to your skin and mucosa.

According to Professor Christine Lang, the potential benefits of skin probiotics would depend on how each microorganism is selected, and the specific effects that they have on the skin.

NutraIngredients reports:

“For now, [Lang] said that it was important to find how different probiotic microorganisms affect the skin microflora.”

Source: NutraIngredients October 26, 2010

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Insect Brains ‘are Source of Antibiotics’ to Fight MRSA

Cockroaches, far from being a health hazard, could be a rich source of antibiotics.

A study of locust and cockroach brains has found a number of chemicals which can kill bugs like MRSA.

Scientists hope these could become a powerful new weapon to boost the dwindling arsenal of antibiotics used to treat severe bacterial infections.

The research was announced at a meeting of the Society for General Microbiology.

The researchers discovered nine different chemicals in the brains of locusts and cockroaches, which all had anti microbrial properties strong enough to kill 90% of MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) while not harming human cells.

Cockroaches have a reputation for tenacity and for thriving in dirty environments.

Simon Lee from Nottingham University is the author of the study. He said that it is this capacity to live in dirty, infectious conditions that mean insect brains contain these kinds of compounds.

“They must have some sort of defense against micro organisms. We think their nervous system needs to be continuously protected because if the nervous system goes down the insect dies. But they can suffer damage to their peripheral structures without dying,” he told BB News.

He hopes the compounds could go on to be used to treat multi drug resistant infections like E. Coli and MRSA which are becoming increasingly difficult to treat using some of the most powerful antibiotics available to medicine.

“A kill rate of 90% is very very high, and I diluted the substance down so there was only a minute amount there. Conventional antbiotics reduce the number of the bacteria and let your immune system cope with the rest. So to get something with such a high kill rate that is so potent at such a low dose is very promising,” he told BBC News.

The compound would need years of testing for safety and efficacy before any drugs developed from them could go on the market.

Source: BBC NEWS

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The 9 Worst Places for Your Health

MSNBC lists some surprisingly bad locations for your health, and the best places to optimize it:

1.Worst place to keep your toothbrush — the bathroom sink

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There are 3.2 million microbes per square inch in the average toilet bowl, and all of those germs are propelled out every time you flush, settling on the floor and the sink. Keep your toothbrush behind closed doors in the medicine cabinet or a nearby cupboard.

2.Worst place to stash sneakers and flip-flops — the bedroom closet

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Shoes track in allergens and contaminants. Leave your shoes by the front door.

3.Worst place to fall asleep — under piles of blankets..CLICK & SEE

Being overheated can keep you from sleeping. Let your feet stick out from under your blankets.

4.Worst place to cool leftovers — in the refrigerator...CLICK & SEE

Placing hot leftovers directly in the fridge can cause uneven cooling and possibly food poisoning. Leave food to cool on the counter for up to an hour after cooking, or divide it into smaller containers that can cool faster before refrigerating.

5.Worst place to sit on an airplane — the rear….CLICK & SEE

The tail of the plane is where you’ll get the bumpiest ride. Sit as close to the wing as you can.

6.Worst place to set your handbag — the kitchen counter….....CLICK & SEE

Tests have showed up to 10,000 bacteria per square inch on purse bottoms. Put your bag anywhere except where food is prepared or eaten.

7.Worst place to use a public bathroom — the stall in the middle...CLICK & SEE
The center stall has more bacteria. Pick a stall all the way left or right.

8.Worst place to keep medicine — the medicine cabinet  in the bathroom...CLICK & SEE
The temperature in a bathroom can get well above the recommended storage temperatures for many common drugs. Keep medicine somewhere cool and dry, such as the pantry.

9.Worst place to use headphones — on an airplane, train, or subway…CLICK & SEE

You’re probably turning the volume up too high if you’re listening to headphones in a noisy environment. Listen wherever you don’t have to blast your music to enjoy it, or consider using noise-canceling headphones.

You may click to see:->

*8 Spots Germs Love to Lurk in Your Home
*Does Your Home Harbor Safety Hazards?
*How to Avoid the Top 5 Deadliest Household Tragedies

Source: MSNBC June 8, 2010

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Indoor Plants Can be Injurious to Health

Potted plants might add a certain aesthetic value to your house, but they are likely to have adverse health effects, suggests a new study. Indoor plants
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The research team headed by Stanley J. Kays of the University of Georgia‘s Department of Horticulture has shown that these indoor plants actually release volatile organic compounds into the environment.

During the study, they identified and measured the amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by four popular indoor potted plant species Peace Lily, Snake Plant, Weeping Fig and Areca Palm.

Samples of each plant were placed in glass containers with inlet ports connected to charcoal filters to supply purified air and outlet ports connected to traps where volatile emissions were measured.

A total of 23 volatile compounds were found in Peace Lily, 16 in Areca Palm, 13 in Weeping Fig, and 12 in Snake Plant. Some of the VOCs are ingredients in pesticides applied to several species during the production phase.

Other VOCs released did not come from the plant itself, but rather the micro-organisms living in the soil.

“Although micro-organisms in the media have been shown to be important in the removal of volatile air pollutants, they also release volatiles into the atmosphere”, said Kays.

Furthermore, 11 of the VOCs came from the plastic pots containing the plants. Several of these VOCs are known to negatively affect animals.

Interestingly, VOC emission rates were higher during the day than at night in all of the species, and all classes of emissions were higher in the day than at night.

The study concluded, while ornamental plants are known to remove certain VOCs, they also emit a variety of VOCs, some of which are known to be biologically active.

“The longevity of these compounds has not been adequately studied, and the impact of these compounds on humans is unknown.”

Source: The study is published in the American Society for Horticultural Science journal HortScience.

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Washing Hands Properly Stops Contagious Disease to Spread

Most people know that washing your hands can help to prevent passing on nasty viruses and bacteria. But how many people just flick their hands under a dribbling tap and think that will do? Now hopeless hand washers will be caught with glowing green fingers by a good hand-washing test.
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A new hand-washing training kit uses a cream containing a harmless dye that glows green in ultraviolet light to show up shoddy hand washing. Demonstrators put a blob of cream on people’s hands and send them away to wash them. When they come back, they are often amazed at how much glowing green dye remains on their fingers. If the dye were a microbe, they would be standing a good chance of infecting themselves and passing it on to other people.

The glowing cream can also be used to show how viruses such as those that cause colds and flu can survive on hard surfaces and be spread from hand to hand. Just touching a doorknob that has had a little of the special cream applied to it can make people’s fingers turn green under UV light — and then when they touch another person’s hand the green glow gets passed on.

Sources:
Science Daily June 3, ’09
Society for General Microbiology June3,’09