Navigation Links
Surprising infection inducing mechanism found in bacteria
Date:5/18/2010

A research appearing in Nature, with the participation of doctors Susana Campoy and Jordi Barb from the Department of Genetics and Microbiology at UAB, demonstrates that bacteria have a surprising mechanism to transfer virulent genes causing infections. The research describes an unprecedented evolutionary adaptation and could contribute to finding new ways of treating and preventing bacterial infections.

Pathogenic genes are responsible for making bacteria capable of causing diseases. These genes cause bacteria to produce specific types of toxins and determine whether or not a disease will later develop in an individual. These virulent genes can be passed from one bacteria to another if the genome segments containing them, known as pathogenicity islands, are transferred from one to another.

A team of researchers from Universitat Autnoma de Barcelona, together with members of the CSIC Institute for Agrobiotechnology, Public University of Navarre, Virginia Commonwealth University, and New York University Medical Center, coordinated by the Valencian Institute for Agronomic Research (IVIA) and CEU-Cardenal Herrera University, have studied the mechanisms producing virulence in staphylococcus bacteria and causing the Toxic Shock Syndrome, a rare but potentially fatal illness in 50% of the cases.

Researchers observed how pathogenicity islands underwent an unprecedented evolutionary adaptation to be able to transfer pathogens to other innocuous bacteria and thus transform them into virulent bacteria.

Under normal conditions, pathogenicity islands produce the protein Stl, which binds to the DNA segment containing virulent genes and represses the transfer of the island. However, sometimes bacteria become infected with a virus which packages and transfers these virulent genes to other bacteria.

Scientists have discovered that these islands can detect the presences of a virus, eliminate the repression produced by Stl, and thus commence a replication and packaging cycle. The island is then capable of transference and of making other harmless bacteria turn virulent.

The new mechanism discovered by scientists is of great importance for the development of new treatments for diseases caused by bacterial toxins. The pathogenicity island studied is a prototype of a new family of virulent DNA recently discovered which also can be transferred to other species of bacteria such as Listeria monocytogenes, responsible for a large number of intoxications.

Less than a year ago, the research group led by Dr Jordi Barb from the Department of Genetics and Microbiology at UAB published an article in Science on the antibiotic resistance mechanism in bacteria ["The SOS Response Controls Integron Recombination". Science. Vol. 324 (2009)]. "With the two articles in Nature and Science we have basic knowledge of the mechanisms used by bacteria to cause infections. This "doublet" in science not only demonstrates the quality of research being carried out at universities in our country, but also the possibility of creating applications for the treatment and prevention of bacterial infections", says Dr Jordi Barb.


'/>"/>

Contact: Maria Jesus Delgado
MariaJesus.Delgado@uab.cat
34-935-814-049
Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. European Union forests expanding, absorbing carbon at surprisingly high rate: study
2. The surprising story of Charles Darwin and his homeopathic doctor
3. UVA reports surprising findings related to myotonic muscular dystrophy
4. Electrospray droplet research yields surprising, practical results
5. Language of a fly proves surprising
6. Surprising discovery from first large-scale analysis of biodiversity and biogeography of viruses
7. The surprising power of the pill
8. Major collaboration uncovers surprising new genetic clues to diabetes
9. Climate changing gas from some surprising microbial liaisons
10. Surprisingly rapid changes in the Earths core discovered
11. Study reveals surprising details of the evolution of protein translation
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/16/2016)... 16, 2016 The global ... to reach USD 1.83 billion by 2024, according ... Inc. Technological proliferation and increasing demand in commercial ... to drive the market growth.      ... The development of advanced multimodal techniques for biometric ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... , June 9, 2016  Perkotek an innovation leader in attendance control systems is ... log work hours, for employers to make sure the right employees are actually signing ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160609/377486LOGO ... ... ...
(Date:6/7/2016)... 7, 2016  Syngrafii Inc. and San Antonio ... that includes integrating Syngrafii,s patented LongPen™ eSignature "Wet" ... collaboration will result in greater convenience for SACU ... while maintaining existing document workflow and compliance requirements. ... Highlights: ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... SAN DIEGO , June 27, 2016  Sequenom, ... company committed to enabling healthier lives through the development ... Supreme Court of the United States ... Federal courts that the claims of Sequenom,s U.S. Patent ... the patent eligibility criteria established by the Supreme Court,s ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... , ... Parallel 6 , the leading software as a service (SaaS) ... Virtual Patient Encounter CONSULT module which enables both audio and video telemedicine communication between ... Using the CONSULT module, patients and physicians can schedule a face to face virtual ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... operations for Amgen, will join the faculty of the University of North ... adjunct professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at UNC Kenan-Flagler, with a focus on ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016   Ginkgo Bioworks , a leading ... was today awarded as one of the World ... world,s most innovative companies. Ginkgo Bioworks is engineering ... real world in the nutrition, health and consumer ... with customers including Fortune 500 companies to design ...
Breaking Biology Technology: