Tag Archives: skin

Scientific Casualties – Infectious disease research can be life threatening

ResearchBlogging.org

Before this weeks post I would like to make an announcement. At this stage I am claiming victory in the debate. You can check out the results on the poll itself here. First I would like to thank myself for putting up such an amazing argument. I would also like to thank Thomas for putting up an insufficient fight, I’ll save some cake for you buddy. I would like to thank my wife and our dogs whose love and support get me throu………..<music plays me off stage>.

I don’t want to sound like I’m brave or a hero or anything but each and every day I, alongside my lab-mates aka ‘the league of extraordinary scientists’, stare down pathogens like S. pneumoniae, E. coli, S. flexneri and L. monocytogenes. We go into battle to try and work out how it is that we can tackle these bad guys on a global scale, developing vaccines and anti-microbials or simply understanding their weaknesses better.

So how do we protect ourselves from these harbingers of death in the lab? A gown, gloves and glasses when appropriate and ethanol on everything all the time to ensure it’s sterilised regularly. Really doesn’t seem like much of a barrier when I think about it.

Thomas wearing his lab coat to protect himself from his work… Thomas. Are you in a bar? Bad Thomas!

In some cases we specifically work on weakened strains to help protect ourselves further but we do rely heavily on our ability to handle these bacteria carefully and with common sense. However, despite all the precautions we take in the lab I’m reasonably sure some of us would be carrying the bugs we work on. Continue reading

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Necrotising Fasciitis – A topic so much fun it’ll melt your face off!

Ahhhhh, necrotising fasciitis, the holy grail for any kid who has poked something disgusting with a stick. Commonly called ‘flesh-eating disease’ even though it’s not really affecting your ‘flesh’, nor are you be eaten, it remains one of the more truly horrifying diseases you can pick up on this planet.

Warning: Graphic picture of wound at the end of the article

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