Contacts Meet Corneas For those without 20/20 vision, contact…

Contacts Meet Corneas

For those without 20/20 vision, contact lenses offer greater freedom than glasses. But there is a downside, the risk of infection as harmful bacteria, such as Enterobacteriaceae, are delivered via the lenses into the eye. These bacteria cause infection by first penetrating through the surface of the cornea, the epithelium, to reach its underlying tissue or stroma. Researchers investigate how by infecting human corneal epithelial cells in a dish with the Enterobacteriaceae, Serratia marcescens. Using a variety of techniques, including scanning electron microscopy of the infected corneal epithelial cells (pictured), they found S. marcescens (purple) caused shape changes, such as spherical blebs, in line with the rapid cell death they also detected. Mutating genes in S. marcescens to impair its secretion of bacterial toxins called cytolysins uncovered a series of proteins required to bring about corneal damage. With this model, researchers can now dig deeper into the pathology of these infections.

Written by Lux Fatimathas

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2019 July 21 Moonquakes Surprisingly Common Image Credit: NASA,…

2019 July 21

Moonquakes Surprisingly Common
Image Credit: NASA, Apollo 11 Crew

Explanation: Why are there so many moonquakes? Analyses of seismometers left on the moon by the Apollo moon landings reveals a surprising number of moonquakes occurring within 100 kilometers of the surface. In fact, 62 moonquakes were detected in data recorded between 1972 and 1977. Many of these moonquakes are not only strong enough to move furniture in a lunar apartment, but the stiff rock of the moon continues to vibrate for many minutes, significantly longer than the softer rock earthquakes on Earth. The cause of the moonquakes remains unknown, but a leading hypothesis is the collapse of underground faults. Regardless of the source, future moon dwellings need to be built to withstand the frequent shakings. Pictured here 50 years ago today, Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin stands beside a recently deployed lunar seismometer, looking back toward the lunar landing module.

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Image of the Week — July 22, 2019CIL:39009 -…

Image of the Week — July 22, 2019

CIL:39009 —

Description: The developing wing bud of a four day chick embryo showing the pattern of spinal nerves growing into it. The nerves are made visible by staining a specific neural protein (3AIO monoclonal antibody, which has a neurofilament associated antigen). The wing bud itself is about 1 mm wide.

Authors: M. Cohn

Licensing: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 UK: England & Wales (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 UK)

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