September 29, 1999
Washington University In St. Louis
Josephine Clark-Curtiss, Ph.D., research associate professor of biology at Washington University in St. Louis, and her colleagues have recently identified 15 M. tuberculosis genes that are expressed only when the bacteria are growing in the immune system's prime gatekeeper, a disease-fighting cell called a macrophage.
For most of this century, tuberculosis, or TB, has not been considered a major disease in the United States. In the late '80s, after a century of steady decline, the number of cases of TB in the United States began to increase due to increases in immigrants from countries where TB is prevalent, homeless people in crowded conditions, the elderly and AIDS patients. Although the increase in cases has been reversed in the last several years, more than 18,000 cases of TB were reported in the United States in 1998. Worldwide, TB remains a serious health problem. The World Health Organization has estimated that one-third of the world's population is infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacterium that causes TB.
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Washington University In St. Louis. "New Technique Identifies M. Tuberculosis Genes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 September 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/09/990929021334.htm>.
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Washington University In St. Louis. "New Technique Identifies M. Tuberculosis Genes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/09/990929021334.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).