Elizabeth writes:

Hello Vincent, Elio, Michele, and Michael, 

My fiance and I really enjoy your show (I listen to it while analyzing data and my fiancee listens to it while working with anaerobic bacteria in his lab).  We are truly microbe obsessed individuals holding 5 microbiology related degrees between us! 

TWIM was a big inspiration to launch our own blog/podcast (microbigals.com/The Microbe Moment). We aim to share everyone’s unique microbe moment and to show everyone is connected to microbes. 

In the last episode, we felt a real connection. Mark talked about Vampirococcus lugossi and predatory bacteria. Back in October, we highlighted predatory bacteria in our series “The Macabre Masterpiece of Microbial Monsters“, associating predatory bacteria to of course vampires.

You closed this episode by talking about Lynn Margulis, a hero of mine and someone I look up to as an aspiring female scientist. I enjoyed hearing Mark’s story about connecting with Lynn, what a magical moment that must have been. We recently published a podcast featuring  Esther Lederberg, another powerful female microbiologist.

I was wondering if you had time to listen to this episode and give us some feedback or a shout out on TWIM! As established microbial communicators I highly value your opinions and aspire to create content as valuable as yours. 

Finally, I love the question if you could talk to a microbe what would you asked. I would ask “How do you choose who to be a commensal, a pathogen, or a symbiont to? I study Xylella fastidiosa which is a grape/citrus/olive pathogen but is found in many other plants and never causes harm so I’m always asking why grapevines? 


Elizabeth Deyett, Ph.D. & Jon Mitchell
Boinformatician | Rolshausen Lab, UCR 
Assistant Feature Editor  | Phytobiomes & MPMI
Founder of Microbigals | Host of The Microbe Moment

Rhys writes:

Dear TWIM,

I’m a long time listener to your podcast and have found it has helped me in my career in a medical microbiology lab.

I am now starting a new journey as a trainee Clinical Scientist and would like to become a Clinical Scientist or perhaps even a Consultant Microbiologist, with a focus on helping treat non-healing and infected wounds.

My Thesis was on the antifungal bioactivity and wound healing properties of the medicinal maggot Lucilia sericata, and I have published two papers on the medical maggot, one partially characterising their antifungal bioactivity and the second showing that they may produce growth factors analogous to human growth factors which appear to affect fibroblast migration, so I have a deep interest in wound healing.

I was wondering if you would perhaps consider reviewing and discussing a paper whereby the focus is management of bacterial infections in wounds, perhaps by affecting quorum sensing to reduce virulence factors in wounds, or using predatory bacteria. I’d like to know what paper you would choose and your insights on the topic.

With kind regards


Wales, UK