Cellular & Microscopic Biology

Cellular and microscopic biology allow scientists to study cells and microorganisms. Cellular biology is the study of cells, including their structure and function. Microbiology is the study of microorganisms, which include algae, bacteria, and viruses.

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In science, people commonly use the terms "hypertonic" and "hypotonic" when describing the concentration of solute particles in solutions. But what exactly is the difference when it comes to hypertonic vs. hypotonic solutions?

By Marie Look

Your phone might look clean, but in reality, it's harboring germs, viruses and bacteria. So stop doomscrolling in the bathroom.

By Primrose Freestone

It's kind of amazing that no two fingerprints are alike, not even for identical twins! But why is that?

By Alia Hoyt

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The Ophiocordyceps unilateralis fungus makes a mockery of ant free will. But how does it take over the ant body to control its host?

By Jesslyn Shields

New studies suggests your gait may be able to predict something deeper than just a temporary mood.

By Jesslyn Shields

Worried that we're running out of effective antibiotics? Never fear. Scientists are plundering cockroach brains and other surprising sources to create new lifesaving medications.

By Patrick J. Kiger

Lots of Americans believe that getting the flu is no worse than getting a cold. Or that the flu vaccine can give them flu. We separate truth from fiction.

By Patrick J. Kiger

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When you get sick, your illness can be caused by several different factors. Learn why you get sick at HowStuffWorks.

By Molly Edmonds

The results of three recent studies show that an uncircumcised man is twice as likely to contract AIDS from an infected woman as is a circumcised one.

By Julia Layton

Pasteurization is the process of removing harmful pathogens from various types of food. How was this process discovered?

By Carol White

Phone calls, e-mails, sign language, friendly shouts -- this is how we communicate in our daily lives. Bacteria, some of the tiniest organisms on Earth, have a different way of talking.

By Molly Edmonds

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For something too small to be detected by an ordinary microscope, viruses pack a big punch. We all know they can wreak havoc on the body, but how do they do it?

By Molly Edmonds

Cell suicide sounds unpleasant, but this programmed cell death is the reason your fingers and toes are no longer webbed. What's the story behind apoptosis, and what does it have to do with curing disease?

By Molly Edmonds

You've heard it on the lips of every newscaster and seen it in the pages of every newspaper and Web site: swine flu. Just how worried should we be about the 2009 version of the H1N1 virus?

By Molly Edmonds

HIV continues to be a major global public health issue, having claimed more than 35 million lives so far.

By Kevin Bonsor & Oisin Curran

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Nearly every cell in your body has the same DNA. It's the hereditary material located your cells' nucleus. But what does it do and why is it so important to all living beings?

By Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D. & Jennifer Walker-Journey

Your body temperature has an important role to play in fighting off infections from viruses like the flu. Here's how it works.

Learn about weight gain and the processes going on in your cells.

By Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D.

Influenza, Ebola and COVID-19 are all viruses. Find out what a virus does to your body and how to decrease your chance of exposure.

By Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D. & Patrick J. Kiger

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Herd immunity means that after a certain percentage of a population is immune to a disease, the whole population is. This is usually achieved through vaccination but some are not convinced.

By Alia Hoyt & Molly Edmonds

Are you the first to complain when it's too hot or too cold at work? Extremophiles have news for you: Suck it up. These hardy microbes make most of us humans seem like whimpering Goldilocks, and studying them may tell us more than you might imagine.

By Jacob Silverman & Desiree Bowie

The mass of microorganisms swarming inside your favorite elite athlete's body may be a great business opportunity.

By Amanda Onion

It's all connected! Recent rodent research suggests that immune responses and social behavior may be more intertwined than we realized.

By Julia Layton

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Dust traveling over the Atlantic from North Africa feeds both phytoplankton that makes the oxygen we breath and the bacteria that could kill us.

By Jesslyn Shields

Biofilms form when single microorganisms attach to a hydrated surface and undergo a "lifestyle switch." But why should we care about biofilms?

By Marianne Spoon