Science & Feature Writing

Stories from my time at Vanderbilt University

Stories from my time at UW-Madison

Science Commentary

News Article Reviews

A few of my favorite things…

Interesting words I learned from reading science-y stuff

  • Diazotroph
    A member of this group can fix atmospheric nitrogen, which means that it can convert nitrogen from the air into a more easy-to-access form, like ammonia. Diazotrophs are essential to plants, especially those that harbor them in their roots, as legumes do.
  • Holobiont
    This term conveys the idea that we, and all other multicellular organisms, are made up of not only of our own cells, but also a diverse community of interacting microbes that share in our metabolic processes and relative health.
    Want to know more? Check out these interesting links
    California Scientist Alice Ayers
    Dr. Bill Miller
  • Virulence Factor
    Something (like an ability or talent) that enables a microbe to cause disease, for instance Listeria monocytogenes, the bacteria that cause listeriosis, can escape vacuoles (holding cells) in the macrophage that swallows it. A macrophage is part of the immune system. When it recognizes an invader, it engulfs it to protect the organism. Because Listeria monocytogenes can escape, it is able to reproduce and cause a problem for the host.