Anthony writes:

The Royal Society added 2 new photos.

12 mins ·

British physician Edward Jenner FRS, the pioneer of smallpox vaccine, the world’s first vaccine, was born #onthisday in 1749. (this was 17 May)

Often referred to as “the father of immunology”, his work is said to have “saved more lives than the work of any other human.”

The Royal Society

It was #onthisday that British physician & scientist, Edward Jenner FRS, administered the first smallpox vaccination in 1796. (this was 14 May)

Often referred to as “the father of immunology”, his work is said to have “saved more lives than the work of any other human.”

Marion writes:

from twiv 441, at 1:31:

“A virologist by inheritance. Is that on the Y chromosome? I guess so.”


Paul writes:

Dear Vincent and fellow twivers

Greetings from Oz! Another great podcast this week with your focus on a paper describing the role of the Y chromosome on influenza susceptibility. As always, it made my trip to and from work at the University of Queensland both pleasurable and informed.

I wanted to pick up on a comment from another listener of a father and son virology connection and Vincent’s throw-away comment that this genotype/phenotype must be Y chromosome linked. Attached is irrefutable proof that the link must be anything other than the Y chromosome – perhaps epigenetic? The attached picture (  is of my daughter and I in front of our respective posters at the Boston Positive Strand RNA virus meeting a few years ago. We were thrilled to be presenting side-by-side at the meeting. Lucy is currently a post-doc working in viral immunology in Seattle with Ed Clarke. Her partner, Justin is in Mike Gayle’s lab next door. If the phenotype is hereditary, it will be strong in our family! Both are also big fans of TWiV.

Keep up the great work – lots of fans in Australia and I recommend the podcast to all my virology students.

Weather in Brisbane is currently sunny and 23degC, heading into what is our winter – or what we locally refer to as our not-so-hot season.



Professor Paul R Young | Head of School |

School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences (SCMB) | The University of Queensland | Brisbane | Queensland | Australia |

Australian Infectious Diseases Research Centre (AID) | The University of Queensland | Brisbane | Queensland | Australia |

PS Vincent, I meant to mention – I now have my first ever polio paper!! Trivalent IPV delivery to follow soon.



Raihan writes:

Dear TWiV hosts,

On TWiV 441 you guys went on a short tangent talking about the potential laptop ban on flights coming from Europe. You guys were mentioning how this is a problem as you can’t get work done on flights and may have to resort to reading a ‘paper book’ on the flight. Well the problem is more than that. I am a Singaporean working in the Middle East and the laptop ban had hit us several months earlier. The ban here includes both laptops and tablets. The regulations state that these devices need to be checked into the baggage and won’t be allowed on as hand carry. That’s where the problem lies. We are scientists and our electronic devices hold our extremely precious data (insert gollum meme here). We can’t run the risk of checking in our laptops when the airline can lose our bags or if our bags get handled roughly resulting in damage to the device. I know this is a perfect ad placement opportunity for Drobo to sell their products but still, a lost or broken laptop can put a researcher back several days if not weeks.

The laptop ban and the horror stories of people traveling to the US from the middle east has scared us pretty bad over here. I have been accepted to present a poster for ASM at New Orleans next month, but the fears of losing my laptop or getting manhandled on flight or at border security has led me to decide against going to ASM. I have asked our American collaborators to present our data on my behalf. The saddest part of all, I only found you that you guys will be recording a show at ASM after I had decided not to go.  I guess it’s a little too late to change my mind, especially since my collaborators have accepted to present.

On a side note, the IT store on campus now sells bubble wrap to wrap your laptops in if you’re travelling to the US. I know I sound a little paranoid, but I’ve been hearing too many horror stories from the news or fellow colleagues traveling to and from the US that I just won’t want to risk it, even if it means not getting a chance to meet you guys (*sad face).

Best Regards,


Trudy writes:

Hi TWiVers,

In follow-up to your discussion about mouse work on TWiV 441, I would like to add that when I was working on RSV we did all of our work in female mice, primarily because they are less aggressive than male mice.  

Also, when I was at the CDC I recall hearing a very interesting talk by a staff scientist from Jackson laboratories.  Most notably, she discussed breeding methods and the rules for mouse genetic nomenclature, which can be very confusing!  Unfortunately I don’t remember her name, but might I suggest finding such a person as a guest for TWiV?  I found her talk very interesting, and it might answer some of your questions.



Bob writes:

On TWiV441 the panel discusses “consomic strains,” details of genes on chromosome Y, etc. etc. I get at least the drift of the discussion, thanks to having taken Dr. Rosalind Redfield’s wonderful online Useful Genetics 1 & 2 courses.

Every time I hear such a discussion I again in frustration wonder whether there is a resource to learn more detail about the genome. Is there an “Encyclopedia Genomica,” as it were?

For example, when panelist Kathy Spindler talks about some details of multi-copy genes on the Y-chromosome, is she acquainted with such details as the result of her own research, papers she has read, or from such a resource

I know that this is not really a question specific to virology, but do any of the panelists know the answer?

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.


Robert writes:

Hi Drs TWiV,

My name is Robert Huff, I am a Cell and Molecular Biology Masters student finishing up my first year at San Diego State University. I work in Dr. Roland Wolkowicz virology lab where I am in the process of developing a cell based assay to monitor the proteolytic cleavage of the Zika Virus proteome. The weather here is sunny and 23 degrees Celsius. I began listening to TWiV about a year ago and have been working my way through the archives in both directions.

My pick is for a science communication project that I just completed as an end of term presentation in one of my graduate classes where we were tasked with the project of explaining our research in a way that the general public could understand. We used a really cool presentation technology called Learning Glass where the speaker faces the audience and writes on a large transparent glass “white board”. There is a camera in the audience that films the speaker as they write and uses a computer program to flip the image and displays it on a multitude of TV screens in the room, so the presenter and write while facing the audience. Its a really awesome technology that I wasn’t aware of and helps to easily convey a message.

Anyways I think this is a great idea to use to help portray the important work that academic labs perform in a way that is easy to get across to an audience that aren’t necessarily experts in the science field.

I’ve attached a dropbox file of my presentation of my own work, although the presentation might not be the best out of my class I am very proud of the work. Hope you enjoy it!

Thank you all for such a great podcast! It keeps me sane when doing home made site mutagenesis, cloning, and countless hours of tissue culture experiments!

The best to all of you,


zika presentation.mp4

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