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Beneficial bacteria may help ward off infection
Date:7/20/2012

While many bacteria exist as aggressive pathogens, causing diseases ranging from tuberculosis and cholera, to plague, diphtheria and toxic shock syndrome, others play a less malevolent role and some are critical for human health.

In a new study, Cheryl Nickerson and her group at ASU's Biodesign Institute, in collaboration with an international team* including Tom Van de Wiele and lead author Rosemarie De Weirdt at Ghent University, Belgium, explore the role of Lactobaccilus reuteria natural resident of the human gutto protect against foodborne infection.

Their results demonstrate that this beneficial or probiotic organism, which produces an antimicrobial substance known as reuterin, may protect intestinal epithelial cells from infection by the foodborne bacterial pathogen Salmonella.

The study examines for the first time the effect of reuterin during the infection process of mammalian intestinal cells and suggests the efficacy of using probiotic bacteria or their derivatives in future therapies aimed at thwarting Salmonella infection.

Members of the Nickerson lab at the Biodesign Institute's Center for Infectious Diseases and Vaccinology involved in this study were Shameema Sarker and Aurlie Crabb.

Results of the new study recently appeared in the journal PloS ONE.

Cell cultures: now in 3-D!

Over the past decade, the Nickerson group and their colleagues have developed organotypic three-dimensional (3-D) tissue culture models of the small and large intestine, lung, placenta, bladder, neuronal tissue and vaginal epithelium that mimic key characteristics of the parental tissue, and applied them to study the infectious disease process. Such models offer exciting new insights into host-pathogen interactions, cell proliferation, differentiation and immune function, and are providing a platform to understand normal tissue homeostasis and transition to disease. '/>"/>

Contact: Joseph Caspermeyer
Joseph.Caspermeyer@asu.edu
Arizona State University
Source:Eurekalert  

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