Researchers Use Machine Learning to Identify Thousands of New Marine RNA Viruses in Study of Interest to Microbiologists and Clinical Laboratory Scientists

Screening and analysis of ocean samples also identified a possible missing link in how the RNA viruses evolved An international team of scientists has used genetic screening and machine learning techniques to identify more than 5,500 previously unknown species of marine RNA viruses and is proposing five new phyla (biological groups) of viruses. The latter would double the number of RNA virus phyla to 10, one of which may be a missing link in the early evolution of the microbes. Though the...

Sarasota Memorial Health Care Implements Specimen Processing Automation in Its Microbiology Laboratory During Early Days of the COVID-19 Pandemic

While working to increase turn-around-times for STAT tests, Florida’s first coronavirus patient arrived, requiring SMH’s clinical laboratory team to adapt its plans Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the clinical laboratory team at 839-bed Sarasota Memorial Hospital, part of the Sarasota Memorial Health Care System (SMH) in Sarasota, Fla., not only implemented a new automated microbiology system, it also installed a new mass spectrometry analyzer, along with new instruments to support large...

Wellcome Sanger Institute Study Discovers New Strain of C. Difficile That Targets Sugar in Hospital Foods and Resists Standard Disinfectants

Researchers believe new findings about genetic changes in C. difficile are a sign that it is becoming more difficult to eradicate Hospital infection control teams, microbiologists, and clinical laboratory professionals soon may be battling a strain of Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) that is even more resistant to disinfectants and other forms of infection control. That’s the opinion of research scientists at the Wellcome Sanger Institute (WSI) and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical...

University of Edinburgh Study Finds Antimicrobial Bacteria in Hospital Wastewater in Research That Has Implications for Microbiologists

The highly infectious bacteria can survive treatment at local sewage plants and enter the food chain of surrounding populations, the study revealed Researchers at the University of Edinburgh (UE) in Scotland found large amounts of antimicrobial-resistance (AMR) genes in hospital wastewater. These findings will be of interest to microbiologists and clinical laboratory managers, as the scientists used metagenomics to learn “how abundances of AMR genes in hospital wastewater are related to...

Leapfrog Group Report Shows Hospitals Failing to Eliminate Hospital-Acquired Infections; Medical Laboratories Can Help Providers’ Antimicrobial Stewardship Programs

Contrary to CMS and Joint Commission programs implemented in 2017 to reduce them, incidents of hospital-acquired infections have risen for the past few years Clinical laboratories and anatomic pathologists know that hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) can be deadly, not just for patients, but for their caregivers and families as well. Even one HAI is too many. Thus, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) required healthcare organizations to upgrade their antimicrobial...
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