Audiommunity loves Tasmanian devils, so we bite the shit out of them… In this episode, we’re talking about a contagious tumor that couldn’t happen to a nicer species. No seriously, it really couldn’t. Tasmanian devils bite each other on the face to say hello. WTF devils?

And we answer audience e-mail that’s been in the inbox for months! I know, I know… we’re going to record more frequently going forward – honest!

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AI23This week – Evidence that viruses drive the evolution of their hosts – who would have guessed? Matt struggles to remember how evolution works, and Kate and Kevin yell past each other about open peer review.

We initially recorded this episode a month ago, but Kevin messed up his audio settings and his recording was unusable. So sorry as always for the delay, but we hope you enjoy!

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Bcell-confettiIn this episode, Matt and Kevin give in to aesthetics. This paper’s just really pretty.

Also, it overturns some pretty entrenched immunology dogma and does it using fancy new technology. B-cells, germinal centers and brainbow confetti.

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kiwiThis week, a guy gets a kiwi allergy from a bone marrow transplant from his sister, Matt envisions a magic mouse, and Kate peaces out after 20 min. Meanwhile, Kevin continues to be the only one drinking… that schtick may not last much longer.

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Something a bit different this episiode. Last month, we joined Jesse Noar, host of the excellent Bacteriophiles podcast to record an episode about oncolytic viruses (viruses that blow up cancer cells). We hope you enjoy it, then head on over to microbeworld and subscribe to Jesse’s podcast.

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Piece_of_intestine,_blocked_by_worms_(16424898321)In this episode, how parasitic worms alter in immunomodulatory effects of the gut microbiome. Also, Kate expresses her distaste for large datasets and animal experiments, and Matt proposes a weight loss company that will only market to identical twins.

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cowIn this episode, we talk about the innate immune system’s Trojan cow strategy – using a cyclic dinucleotide as a signaling molecule means that viruses can package the seeds of their own destruction.

Meanwhile, Matt and Kate throw Kevin under the bus with regards to alcohol consumption, and Matt expounds on the security threat posed by infectious cattle.

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In this episode we talk about lymphatics in the brain and why that’s both obvious and not obvious. Meanwhile, Kate drinks disgusting smoothies and Kevin triggers Matt with a trigger warning.

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Gross Smoothie Recipe

2 cups plain kefir
2 Tbsp almond butter
1 cup chopped baby kale
1 banana (Cavendish!)
1/3 cup oatmeal
1/2 scoop protein powder
1 dash cayenne pepper

Blend all ingredients, hold nose and consume.

ai16

Taking the breaks off of the immune system can get it to attack cancer cells.

In this episode, Matt and Kevin discuss checkpoint blockade cancer immunotherapy (wow, that’s a mouthful). When cancer stamps down the breaks of the immune system, cutting the break line can allow T-cells to do their job.

Meanwhile, Kate’s teeth are falling out of her head, and Matt can’t even remember what scotch he’s drinking.

This episode was recorded Friday, Jan 8th… we’re getting better folks.

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draco

This week, we’re discussing DRACOs – not the Harry Potter character, a “new” class of antiviral therapeutics that links up the double-stranded RNA-binding part of one protein to the cell-death (apoPtosis)-activating part of a different protein.

The paper we’re discussing was published over 4 years ago, but the idea hasn’t seemed to take off – we’ll discuss the promise of the idea, but also our concerns and skepticism, the later of which is particularly important since the original author is now embarking on a crowd funding campaign to get more money to study it.

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