Log Reduction: What does it mean?

by Erica Mitchell | June 28 2016

Discussion of the reduction of microorganisms in healthcare settings will often include the data as “log reductions.” To those of us more accustomed to percentages, this can be confusing. Today's post will explain how to interpret these numbers and, we hope, help our readers better understand how they are used in scientific literature.

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A New Category of Clean: Preventive Biocidal Surfaces

by Erica Mitchell | June 8 2016

An earlier version of this post was published in May 2015.

Sometimes a product comes along that breaks the paradigm. It is so innovative and unexpected that attempts to fit it into an existing market category are impossible. When that happens, a new category must be created to accommodate the new technology. This is the case with surfaces that actively kill bacteria. They're not a cleanser, per se. They're not really a device, either. What are they? Enter Preventive|Biocidal Surfaces.

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The Newest Superbug to Reach the US: The Final Threshold Crossed?

by Alastair Monk PhD | June 1 2016

Reports have been recently published of the first isolation and identification of the first colistin resistant bacteria in the US[i]. While we may be getting used to hearing of antibiotic resistance, this report indicates the last threshold on the pathway to complete antibiotic resistance being crossed.

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Memorial Day: Remembering Our Troops' Most Lethal Enemy

by Erica Mitchell | May 29 2016

On Memorial Day, we remember those men and women who died serving our country as a member of the armed forces. Traditionally, the day is set aside to remember those who died in combat. We add to that tradition today, remembering those who died fighting for our country, even as they lost the battle to war’s deadliest opponent: Disease.

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Copper vs. Cuprous Oxide: What's the Difference?

by Erica Mitchell | May 25 2016

An earlier version of this post appeared in July 2015.

Copper is the oldest-known metal used by humankind to make tools and decorations, helping form the transition from the Stone Age to the Bronze Age. After millennia of using wood, stones, and animal bones, copper transformed the abilities of early peoples, pushing them to invent ore smelting, mining, and metalworking. As a result of these skills honed over generations, cultures around the world took the next step, combining metal ores to create harder metals, such as bronze, a combination of copper and tin. What is special about copper, and how will it take us to the next level in healthcare safety?

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6 Steps from Contaminated Environment to an Infected Patient

by Erica Mitchell | May 20 2016

An earlier version of this article was posted on September 15, 2016.

Remember those proofs from high school geometry? Based on given a set of rules, you could discover the measurement of all the angles in a shape from just one measurement. Stepping you way from that one measurement to the next, you could prove with certainly the measurement of another, then another, until all the angles were accounted for, each determination backed up by a known rule.

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Bacteria: Our Love/Hate Relationship

by Erica Mitchell | May 13 2016


An earlier edition of this post was originally posted on December 8, 2014.

Bacteria rule the world. Not only do they far outnumber every other type of plant or animal, they are everywhere - inside and outside every other type of animal and in every conceivable environment, from boiling thermal vents to sub-zero glaciers. But not all bacteria are germs, or illness-causing bacteria. Most are vital to our survival and to the survival of life on Earth. Unfortunately, some bacteria are dangerous, especially to those of us with weak immune systems. Today’s post will explore this incredible branch of the tree of life, and our “can’t live with ‘em, can’t live without ‘em” relationship with these microorganisms.  

What is bacteria?

Bacteria are single-cell organisms. Where humans are made up of, on average 1 trillion cells, bacteria are made up of just one. But one isn't the loneliest number when it comes to bacteria; they reproduce very efficiently by splitting into two, who then go on to split into two more… and on until you have a colony of bacteria. Some of these  colonies are beneficial to us, some don't harm us at all, and some are downright nasty, leading to harmful infections which can threaten our lives.

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8 Great Podcasts to Check Out This Summer

by Erica Mitchell | May 11 2016

As summer approaches, so do opportunities to listen to podcasts! If you want to explore some of the topics we cover in this blog straight from the researchers, scientists and designers who are on the forefront of discovery, check out some of these highly-reviewed podcasts. 

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Anatomy of a Scientific Journal Article

by Erica Mitchell | May 4 2016

Scientific articles, also called academic or scholarly papers, are every-day reading for many professionals. For the average person, however, they represent a novel, sometimes intimidating, type of reading material. Unlike science articles found in science magazines such as Scientific American or Psychology Today, which take a journalistic approach to covering breakthroughs, journal articles have a concise writing style, lots of numbers, and scientific jargon. This post will explore the basic parts of a scientific journal article, including what parts to skip to if you just want the big picture.

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Scientific Journals: From the Lab to the World

by Erica Mitchell | May 3 2016

Scientists around the world toil in their laboratories or in the field conducting research according to the scientific method. One of the final steps in the scientific method is sharing data within the scientific community. The most important way these 15 million + scientists share their work with their colleagues and the world at large is through publication in a scientific journal. Publication in a journal means the wider community has access to research that may help in other studies, but it also means the data has been reviewed and meets established criteria for reliability, meaning fellow scientists can trust the findings and use them with confidence.

Today’s post will explore the steps required for work to achieve publication, and tomorrow’s post will describe the resulting article format.

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