Author Archives: Dr. Cramer

About Dr. Cramer

Dr. Lorraine Cramer teaches undergraduate Microbiology and Immunology to students at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill.

It has begun….

China has just modified three normal  human embryos using the CRISPR gene system. GATTACA may soon be a documentary…..

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The WHO has posted a “Most Wanted” list for the microbial world

Antibiotic resistance continues to march on…. We have known that we are losing the ability to stop bacterial infections for a while now.  Back in 2013, the CDC posted their list of the most dangerous antibiotic resistant bacteria  in an … Continue reading

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The cost of heath care for vaccine preventable diseases

A recent study stated that total cost to the U.S. health care system for vaccine treatable diseases was estimated to be almost 9 billion dollars,  just for 2015 alone. The study also estimated that over 7 billion dollars of that cost was … Continue reading

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New life forms discovered on earth!

These are not aliens, but a newly recognized type of bacteria found in the deepest regions of earth. In class, we divide bacteria into categories depending on their growth and energy requirements.  One such division depends on where the bacteria derive their … Continue reading

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Watch antibiotic resistance evolve before your eyes!

Thanks to MCRO student Jack Iasiello for sending me a link to a fascinating video of how E. coli can quickly evolve antibiotic resistance. Harvard University and the Technion–Israel Institute of Technology set up a 2 foot by 4 foot “petri … Continue reading

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More evidence that we live on an Earth that is a literal microbial village.

Antibiotic resistant strains of Shigella sonnei are showing up around the world, US, Australia, Europe and Asia. Researchers in Vietnam have been able to track isolates from a survey of resistant organisms identified around the world to a specific clade of … Continue reading

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Cases of syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia explode across US

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are making an unwelcome comeback all across the United States. We are seeing especially problematic increases in syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia. What is behind the amazing increase in disease? It is thought to be due to the … Continue reading

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Syphillis making a comeback in Japan

There have been over 2000 cases of Syphillis documented in Japan by the end of Oct., 2015. This was up from around 1600 cases in all of 2014. The main cohort of infected individuals? Females in the 20 to 24 years age group. One of … Continue reading

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UNC faculty gets Nobel Prize for DNA repair mechanisms!!

Dr. Aziz Sancar, just won the Nobel Prize for chemistry today, along with two other scientists,Dr.Tomas Lindahl from the Francis Crick Institute and Clare Hall Laboratory, and Dr. Paul Modrich, from Duke University.  All study different mechanisms of DNA repair. The … Continue reading

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New evidence that the microbiome is important in protecting against allergies and asthma!!

A new study published in the journal Science Translational Medicine  and discussed in the journal Science this week illustrates the importance of a normal microbiome and what changes in your microbiota may mean for long term health. To look find associations … Continue reading

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