World’s Strangest

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Meet Larry, the Vomiting Robot

If you’ve never had a personal encounter with the norovirus, consider yourself lucky. The virus, which causes severe diarrhea and vomiting in human, is extremely contagious. It gained regained its notoriety in several well-publicized [...]

Going Viral: How Two Pakistani Brothers Created the First PC Virus

by Jason Kersten Before vigilante hackers like Anonymous tamed the Internet, two brothers started their own fight against software piracy. Their weapon: the first PC virus. Twenty-five years ago, students at the University of Delaware began experiencing strange symptoms: temporary memory loss, a lethargic drive, and fits of rage. This wasn’t just any old flu—it was the [...]

World’s biggest virus found in Chile

Megavirus chilensis contains more than 1000 genes and is the most complex virus ever discovered. The virus was found in a sample of sea water taken of…

The Centaur that Killed the Common Cold

A promising series of tests of a new antiviral drug has researchers so jazzed up about its potential success that they’re throwing around wild mythology-inspired comparisons to herald its ingenious lethality. If the drug’s daunting name—DRACO—isn’t enough to unnerve pesky viruses, sending them scurrying to the darkest recesses of your outermost extremities in search of [...]

Glow-in-the-Dark Kitties

Scientists are looking into a new technique for the fight against AIDS…and yes, it involves glow-in-the-dark cats! Two genes are inserted into feline eggs before fertilization, one being the jellyfish gene that causes cats to glow (“tracking purposes.”) The other is a rhesus macaque gene that blocks cell infection by feline immunodeficiency virus, which provides [...]

Is It Time to Destroy the Last Smallpox Stores?

Scientists and health officials are pretty certain that the smallpox virus exists in only two places in the world: at the CDC in Atlanta and in a government laboratory in Russia. The World Health Organization declared the disease eradicated in 1979, and the two remaining supplies are for research only. This week, the 64th World [...]

Virophage discovered in Antarctic lake

The new virophage was discovered after noting protein sequences similar to another found in 2008. A virophage is a virus-eating virus. Only three have…

Virus Could Extend the Life of Batteries

The tobacco mosaic virus may be a devastating plant blight that destroys over 125 types of crops, including tomatoes, tobacco and peppers, but it also could increase the lifespan of a typical lithium battery by up to ten times. The tiny, rod-like cells of the virus are first coated with conductive materials and then added [...]

The Insanity Virus

Is schizophrenia caused by genetics or environment? The answer may be both, but in a way you’d never imagine. The culprit may be a virus! The good news is that you don’t have to worry about catching this virus. The bad news is that we all carry it in every cell of our bodies. Sixty million [...]

Is a Cure for the Common Cold in the Future?

Until very recently, biologists believed that once a virus enters a cell, a person’s immune system cannot combat that virus because antibodies cannot enter cells. But researchers at the Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK, have uncovered evidence that antibodies can, in fact, enter cells. This opens up the possibility of attaching antiviral components [...]