March 2012

BMB blogs in brief

This blog review is the fifth in an occassional online series.

Blogging, or “web logging,” as it was originally coined, is now entwined with most media consumers’ lives along with Twitter feeds and Facebook posts. And while those who work and study in the field of bioscience have a multitude of reading options, it’s sometimes hard to know where to begin. There is an ocean of interesting reading out there, and this column is intended to help readers who aren’t all that Web savvy yet wade through them and pick out the gems. I will try to provide brief overviews of a handful of blogs that for the most part target readers engaged in biochemistry and molecular biology.

Connor Bamford

Vaccines and viruses are now essential components of all molecular biology curricula.
The “Rule of 6ix” blog by Ph.D. student and aspiring virologist Connor Bamford is quite informative.
Bamford blogs on topics that “explore the many mechanisms that viruses employ to infect and cause disease in humans and other animals through the review of recently published material.”
His site is organized into modules, such as general virology, immunology, molecular biology, antivirals and vaccines. He covers, in relatively jargonless fashion, topics ranging from common respiratory tract viruses to the AIDS virus to deadly pathogens like Ebola.
Typical posts ask such alluring questions as “Should vaccinology embrace systems biology?” and “How come vaccine viruses are so safe while normal viruses are so dangerous?”
In case you missed my previous reviews:
• Bora Zivkovic’s “A Blog Around the Clock,” November issue
• H.D. Urquiza Hernandez’s “The Biochemistry Questions Site,” December issue
• “Molbio Hut,” cultivated by Alejandro Montenegro-Montero and Francisco Barriga, January issue
• “Tip of the Week,” housed by OpenHelix and cultivated by Trey Lathe, Mary Mangan and Jennifer Williams, February issue



Aditi Das ( is a science writer and research scientist based in Washington, D.C.

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