News This 1348 painting shows how plague devastated European cities like Florence

Black rats are also implicated in both outbreaks, which took place 800 years apart

Google's Doodle commemorates Julius Richard Petri

This will grow on you: Google Doodle celebrates 161st birthday of Julius Richard Petri - inventor of the Petri dish

Google is commemorating the achievements of the scientist Julius Richard Petri today with a Google Doodle that shows his invention - the Petri dish - in action.

Scientists create protein 'superglue' from flesh-eating bacteria that could help detect cancer

The terms ‘flesh-eating bacteria’ and ‘good news’ do not normally go together, but a group of researchers from the University of Oxford believe they have engineered a protein from flesh-eating bacteria that acts as a molecular ‘superglue’ and could be used to help detect cancer cells.

All the major food groups: carbohydrates, protein, fat, bacteria...

If you’re reading this while eating breakfast and you happened to drop your toast on the floor, you might want to stop (eating, that is, not reading).

Woese in 1961 with a model of the ribonucleic acid chain

Professor Carl Woese: Scientist whose work revealed the 'third domain' of life

Carl Woese was a biophysicist and microbiologist who uncovered the "third domain" of life, with the detection of archaea. In doing so he redrew the taxonomic tree and proved that all life on Earth is related.

You thought the horse meatballs were bad... Ikea withdraws cakes over 'faecal matter'

Ikea, the world’s leading flat-pack furniture retailer, has withdrawn chocolate almond cake sold in its stores in 23 countries after it was found to contain sewage bacteria.

Study shows hospital antibiotics gave rise to spread of superbug

Widespread use of antibiotics in hospitals triggered the emergence of two resistant strains of the Clostridium superbug which has killed thousands of people worldwide over the past two decades, a study has shown.

The bacterium Clostridium difficile takes over the gut of patients taking antibiotics, causing severe bowel problems and even death

Overuse of hospital antibiotics led to deadly superbug outbreak

Global epidemic of C. difficile that killed thousands were caused by two separate strains

What is meningitis?

The meningitis bacterium lives harmlessly in the noses and throats of one in 10 people but,  for reasons that are not fully understood, can erupt into a  life-threatening illness  that causes inflammation of the membrane  around the brain – the “meninges” – and can lead to death within hours.

What is septicaemia?

If Savita Halappanavar’s condition was an obstetric emergency, as has been described, then her doctors were under a duty to do whatever was necessary to save her life, even if that meant sacrificing the life of the foetus.

Marmite 'may help fight superbug'

A Marmite ingredient could help doctors defeat the MRSA superbug, research suggests.

Seaweed 'could fight tooth-decay'

Microbes found on seaweed could provide an unexpected weapon in the fight against tooth decay, scientists have said.

Rise in Legionnaires' disease cases

The number of cases of Legionnaires' disease recorded in a deadly outbreak has risen again.

Colgate censured for misleading advert

The firm behind the Colgate brand has been reprimanded by the advertising watchdog for wrongly implying that one of its toothpastes has the backing of health professionals.

US man critical after contracting bubonic plague

Man contracted the disease after being bitten whilst attempting to get a mouse away from a stray cat

Gonorrhoea 'may become untreatable'

Gonorrhoea may become "untreatable" as drug-resistant strains are spreading across Europe, health officials said.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home