Navigation Links
In the lab, scientists coax E. coli to resist radiation damage
Date:3/14/2014

MADISON, Wis. Capitalizing on the ability of an organism to evolve in response to punishment from a hostile environment, scientists have coaxed the model bacterium Escherichia coli to dramatically resist ionizing radiation and, in the process, reveal the genetic mechanisms that make the feat possible.

The study, published in the online journal eLife, provides evidence that just a handful of genetic mutations give E. coli the capacity to withstand doses of radiation that would otherwise doom the microbe. The findings are important because they have implications for better understanding how organisms can resist radiation damage to cells and repair damaged DNA.

"What our work shows is that the repair systems can adapt and those adaptations contribute a lot to radiation resistance," says University of Wisconsin-Madison biochemistry Professor Michael Cox, the senior author of the eLife report.

In previous work, Cox and his group, working with John R. Battista, a professor of biological sciences at Louisiana State University, showed that E. coli could evolve to resist ionizing radiation by exposing cultures of the bacterium to the highly radioactive isotope cobalt-60. "We blasted the cultures until 99 percent of the bacteria were dead. Then we'd grow up the survivors and blast them again. We did that twenty times," explains Cox.

The result were E. coli capable of enduring as much as four orders of magnitude more ionizing radiation, making them similar to Deinococcus radiodurans, a desert-dwelling bacterium found in the 1950s to be remarkably resistant to radiation. That bacterium is capable of surviving more than one thousand times the radiation dose that would kill a human. "Deinococcus evolved mainly to survive desiccation, not radiation," Cox says, "so when conditions are right, it can repair damage very quickly and start growing again."

Understanding the molecular machinery that allows some organisms to survive what would otherwise be lethal doses of radiation is important because the same bacterial machinery that repairs DNA and protects cells in microbes exists in humans and other organisms. Although turning the new findings into application is in the distant future, the results could ultimately contribute designer microbes capable of helping clean radioactive waste sites or making probiotics that could aid patients undergoing radiation therapy for some cancers.

The new study demonstrates that organisms can actively repair genetic damage from ionizing radiation. Prior to the new work, scientists thought the ability of cells to resist radiation stemmed primarily from their ability to detoxify the reactive oxygen molecules created by radiation within cells.

That passive detoxification approach, notes Cox, is most likely working in tandem with active mechanisms such as the mutations found by the Wisconsin group as well as other, yet-to-be-discovered mechanisms.

"This extreme resistance we're looking at is a complicated phenotype," says Cox. "There are likely additional mechanisms buried in this data and we're working to pull those out."


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael Cox
mcox@wisc.edu
608-262-1181
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Let there be tissue-penetrating light: Scientists develop new nanoscale method to fight cancer
2. Scientists discover new protein involved in lung cancer
3. Scientists explore promising new option for first line of attack in lymphoma
4. Tel Aviv University scientists honored for proposals in melanoma research
5. Scientists call for screening mammography every 2 years for most women
6. NIH scientists find mechanism that helps HIV evade antibodies, stabilize key proteins
7. Scientists develop powerful new animal model for metastatic prostate cancer
8. NIH scientists map gene changes driving tumors in common pediatric soft-tissue cancer
9. Scripps Florida scientists find regulator of amyloid plaque buildup in Alzheimers disease
10. NCCS scientists discover gene regulation is dependent on protein ANP32E
11. Scientists make your stomach turn bright green if you have an ulcer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg Traurig, ... Elite. The attorneys chosen by their peers for this recognition are considered among the ... Traurig Shareholders received special honors as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Plano, TX (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... taking part in Genome magazine’s Code Talker Award, an essay contest in which patients ... for an award to be presented at the 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Strategic Capital Partners, ... economy by obtaining investment capital for emerging technology companies. SCP has delivered ... already resulted in more than a million dollars of capital investment for five ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... the upcoming 2016 Miss Arizona pageant as its official Medspa Sponsor. Dr. Josh ... Mesa, and Chandler, Arizona. , Dr. Olson says the decision to support ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... New York (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... marijuana patients optimize the ingestion of their medication by matching users with high quality ... users to compare pieces with no commitment. , Inhale was founded by two brothers, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016  Global Blood Therapeutics, Inc. (GBT) (NASDAQ: ... novel therapeutics for the treatment of grievous blood-based ... closing of its previously announced underwritten public offering ... public offering price of $18.75 per share. All ... by GBT. GBT estimates net proceeds from the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016 The Academy of Managed ... recommendations that would allow biopharmaceutical companies to more ... that make formulary and coverage decisions, a move that ... new medicines. The recommendations address restrictions in ... on the drug label, a prohibition that hinders decision ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 According to a new ... Pen Needles, Safety Pen Needles), Needle Length (4mm, 5mm, ... Mode of Purchase (Retail, Non-Retail) - Trends & Global ... the market for the forecast period of 2016 to ... Billion by 2021 from USD 1.65 Billion in 2016, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: