Navigation Links
Anthrax cellular entry point uncovered
Date:1/25/2008

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. The long-sought-after biological gateway that anthrax uses to enter healthy cells has been uncovered by microbiologists at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

Anthrax spores enter the cell through something called Mac-1, a receptor that sits on the surface of certain cells.

This is the first study to uncover exactly how the bacteria get inside cells to begin with, the UAB researchers said. Previous studies have shown what happens after anthrax spores enter the body and wreak havoc.

Unraveling the anthrax-Mac-1 gateway is a milestone in the ongoing efforts to protect humans from bioterrorism and biological warfare, the UAB microbiologists said. Such a discovery will speed the development of new drugs and vaccines to fight or prevent anthrax infection, and advance the understanding of bacterial infection.

The findings are published in the online version of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and will soon appear in a print edition.

We know anthrax infection can occur in wild and domestic animals, but in humans this disease is extremely rare and very dangerous. It is a bioweapon, said John Kearney, Ph.D., a professor in the UAB Department of Microbiology and co-author on the study. This study reveals the biological paradigm that makes the anthrax spore clever enough to target the Mac-1 receptor, and use this entry point to boost its lethality.

Bacillus anthracis infection occurs in three forms: cutaneous (skin), inhalation and through swallowing spores. The skin infection is the most common type and can be treated with antibiotics if diagnosed rapidly.

The more serious form is inhalation anthrax, which was diagnosed in a few adults during the anthrax scare after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks against the United States.

In the UAB study, researchers worked under strict bio-safe conditions to infect cultures of cells and laboratory-bred mice with a strain of anthrax often used in research.

Infection rates and other observations were significant enough to convince the microbiologists anthrax relies on Mac-1 to do its damage inside healthy cells.

By showing how anthrax spores recognize Mac-1 receptors, this discovery points toward a precise entry point which B. anthracis uses to proliferate and trigger lethal consequences, said Claudia Oliva, Ph.D., and Melissa Swiecki, Ph.D., both researchers in the UAB Department of Microbiology and co-lead authors on the study.


'/>"/>

Contact: Troy Goodman
tdgoodman@uab.edu
205-934-8938
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Using carbon nanotubes to seek and destroy anthrax toxin and other harmful proteins
2. Team IDs weakness in anthrax bacteria
3. Bioengineers at University of Pennsylvania devise nanoscale system to measure cellular forces
4. Boston College profs study oxidative stress subcellular to discover its role in diseases
5. Studying component parts of living cells with carbon nanotube cellular probes
6. Story ideas from Molecular & Cellular Proteomics
7. e-Science points to pollution solutions
8. Salmon garnish points the way to green electronics
9. NIH awards UC $9 million grant to improve patient point-of-care technologies
10. Research points towards early cancer detection
11. New thoracic imaging approach can pinpoint underlying venous problems
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/30/2017)... 30, 2017 Trends, opportunities and forecast in ... by technology (fingerprint, AFIS, iris recognition, facial recognition, hand ... by end use industry (government and law enforcement, commercial ... banking, and others), and by region ( North ... Asia Pacific , and the Rest of ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... , March 28, 2017 ... Biometrics), Hardware (Camera, Monitors, Servers, Storage Devices), Software (Video ... and Region - Global Forecast to 2022", published by ... in 2016 and is projected to reach USD 75.64 ... 2017 and 2022. The base year considered for the ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... 2017 The Controller General of Immigration from Maldives ... Algeen have received the prestigious international IAIR Award for the most ... Reading ... Maldives ... Abdulla Algeen (small picture on the right) have received the IAIR award ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... LAGUNA HILLS, Calif. , Oct. 11, 2017 ... London (ICR) and University of ... prognostic tool to risk-stratify patients with multiple myeloma (MM), in ... nine . The University of Leeds ... by Myeloma UK, and ICR will perform the testing services ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... Bay, Florida (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 ... ... and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted orphan drug designation to SBT-100, its novel ... (sdAb) for the treatment of osteosarcoma. SBT-100 is able to cross the cell ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... FirstHand program has won a US2020 STEM Mentoring Award. Representatives of the FirstHand ... Excellence in Volunteer Experience from US2020. , US2020’s mission is to change the ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... 10, 2017 SomaGenics announced the receipt of ... develop RealSeq®-SC (Single Cell), expected to be the first ... (including microRNAs) from single cells using NGS methods. The ... to accelerate development of approaches to analyze the heterogeneity ... "New techniques for measuring levels of mRNAs in individual ...
Breaking Biology Technology: