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Bacterial communication encourages chronic, resistant ear infections
Date:7/6/2010

rhalis or the severity of disease caused by this species," says Swords.

In examining the dynamics between these two bacteria in culture and animal models, Swords and his colleagues discovered the H. influenzae secreted autoinducer-2 (AI-2), a chemical involved in an interbacterial method of communication known as quorum sensing, that promoted increased biofilm formation and antibiotic resistance in M. catarrhalis.

"We conclude that H. influenzae promotes M. catarrhalis persistence within polymicrobial infection biofilms via inter-species quorum signaling. AI-2 may therefore represent an ideal target for disruption of chronic polymicrobial infections," says Swords. "Moreover, these results strongly imply that successful vaccination against the unencapsulated H. influenzae strains that cause airway infections may also significantly impact chronic M. catarrhalis disease by removing a reservoir for the AI-2 signal that promotes M. catarrhalis persistence within biofilms."


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Contact: Garth Hogan
ghogan@asmusa.org
American Society for Microbiology
Source:Eurekalert

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