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How One Bacteria Colonizes The Gut And Causes Food Poisoning

Date:
October 22, 2007
Source:
Journal of Clinical Investigation
Summary:
Food poisoning caused by the bacteria enterohemorrhagic Eschericia coli O157:H7A results in severe abdominal cramps and bloody diarrhea. In the very young and old it can also cause hemolytic uremic syndrome -- a disease characterized by anemia and kidney failure. A new study has provided new insight into the mechanisms by which EHEC colonize the intestines, which is essential if we are to develop strategies to prevent infection by this bacteria.

Food poisoning caused by the bacteria enterohemorrhagic Eschericia coli (EHEC) O157:H7A results in severe abdominal cramps and bloody diarrhea.

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In the very young and old it can also cause hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) -- a disease characterized by anemia and kidney failure. A new study by Jorge Girón and colleagues from the University of Arizona, Tucson, has provided new insight into the mechanisms by which EHEC colonize the intestines, which is essential if strategies to prevent infection by this bacteria are to be developed.

The authors determined that EHEC O157:H7 make a number of proteins that come together to form a structure known as an adhesive type IV pilus, which they termed the hemorrhagic coli pilus (HCP). HCP were shown to enable EHEC O157:H7 to adhere to human intestinal epithelial cells in vitro.

Furthermore, individuals with HUS, but not individuals who were healthy, were found to mount an immune response to the HCP component Hcp4, indicating that HCPs are produced by the bacteria during infection with EHEC O157:H7.

Article: Intestinal adherence associated with type IV pili of enterohemorrhagic Eschericia coli O157:H7


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The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of Clinical Investigation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


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Journal of Clinical Investigation. "How One Bacteria Colonizes The Gut And Causes Food Poisoning." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071018171447.htm>.
Journal of Clinical Investigation. (2007, October 22). How One Bacteria Colonizes The Gut And Causes Food Poisoning. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071018171447.htm
Journal of Clinical Investigation. "How One Bacteria Colonizes The Gut And Causes Food Poisoning." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071018171447.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

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