Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Salmonella's Sweet Tooth Predicts Its Downfall

Date:
May 25, 2009
Source:
Institute of Food Research
Summary:
For the first time scientists have shown what the food poisoning bug Salmonella feeds on to survive as it causes infection: glucose. Their discovery of Salmonella's weakness for sugar could provide a new way to vaccinate against it. The discovery could also lead to vaccine strains to protect against other disease-causing bacteria, including superbugs.

Salmonella, coloured green, inside macrophage cells.
Credit: Isabelle Hautefort, IFR

For the first time UK scientists have shown what the food poisoning bug Salmonella feeds on to survive as it causes infection: glucose.

Related Articles


Their discovery of Salmonella’s weakness for sugar could provide a new way to vaccinate against it. The discovery could also lead to vaccine strains to protect against other disease-causing bacteria, including superbugs.

“This is the first time that anyone has identified the nutrients that sustain Salmonella while it is infecting a host’s body,” says Dr Arthur Thompson from the Institute of Food Research.

The nutrition of bacteria during infection is an emerging science. This is one of the first major breakthroughs, achieved in collaboration with Dr. Gary Rowley at the University of East Anglia.

Salmonella food poisoning causes infection in around 20 million people worldwide each year and is responsible for about 200,000 human deaths. It also infects farm animals and attaches to salad vegetables.

During infection, Salmonella bacteria are engulfed by immune cells designed to kill them. But instead the bacteria multiply.

Salmonella must acquire nutrients to replicate. The scientists focused on glycolysis, the process by which sugars are broken down to create chemical energy. They constructed Salmonella mutants unable to transport glucose into the immune cells they occupy and unable to use glucose as food. These mutant strains lost their ability to replicate within immune cells, rendering them harmless

“Our experiments showed that glucose is the major sugar used by Salmonella during infection,” said Dr Thompson.

The mutant strains still stimulate the immune system, and the scientists have filed patents on them which could be used to develop vaccines to protect people and animals against poisoning by fully virulent salmonella.

Glycolysis occurs in most organisms including other bacteria that occupy host cells. Disrupting how the bacteria metabolise glucose could therefore be used to create vaccine strains for other pathogenic bacteria, including superbugs.

The harmless strains could also be used as vaccine vectors. For example, the flu gene could be expressed within the harmless Salmonella strain and safely delivered to the immune system.

The next stage of the research will be to test whether the mutants elicit a protective immune response in mice.

In Germany the nutrition of bacteria is the subject of a six-year priority programme of research to investigate why bacteria are able to multiply inside a host’s body to cause disease.

The IFR is an institute of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). This research was funded by a Core Strategic Grant from BBSRC.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Institute of Food Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Steven D. Bowden, Gary Rowley, Jay C.D. Hinton, and Arthur Thompson. Glucose and glycolysis are required for the successful infection of macrophages and mice by Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. Infection and Immunity, 2009; DOI: 10.1128/IAI.00093-09

Cite This Page:

Institute of Food Research. "Salmonella's Sweet Tooth Predicts Its Downfall." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090519075850.htm>.
Institute of Food Research. (2009, May 25). Salmonella's Sweet Tooth Predicts Its Downfall. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 3, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090519075850.htm
Institute of Food Research. "Salmonella's Sweet Tooth Predicts Its Downfall." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090519075850.htm (accessed March 3, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Mom Triumphs Over Tragedy, Helps Other Families

Mom Triumphs Over Tragedy, Helps Other Families

AP (Mar. 3, 2015) After her son, Dax, died from a rare form of leukemia, Julie Locke decided to give back to the doctors at St. Jude Children&apos;s Research Hospital who tried to save his life. She raised $1.6M to help other patients and their families. (March 3) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Looted and Leaking, South Sudan's Oil Wells Pose Health Risk

Looted and Leaking, South Sudan's Oil Wells Pose Health Risk

AFP (Mar. 3, 2015) Thick black puddles and a looted, leaking ruin are all that remain of the Thar Jath oil treatment facility, once a crucial part of South Sudan&apos;s mainstay industry. Duration: 01:13 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Woman Convicted of Poisoning Son

Woman Convicted of Poisoning Son

AP (Mar. 3, 2015) A woman who blogged for years about her son&apos;s constant health woes was convicted Monday of poisoning him to death by force-feeding heavy concentrations of sodium through his stomach tube. (March 3) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Johns Hopkins researchers analyzed 58,000 heart stress tests to come up with a formula that predicts a person&apos;s chances of dying in the next decade. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins