Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Particularly dangerous Salmonella discovered

Date:
April 18, 2012
Source:
University of California - Santa Barbara
Summary:
Researchers have discovered Salmonella bacteria that are up to 100 times more capable of causing disease. Their findings may help prevent food poisoning outbreaks that continue to plague public health and the food industry.

Salmonella typhimurium (red) invades cultured human cells in this color-enhanced scanning electron micrograph.
Credit: Rocky Mountain Laboratories, NIAID, NIH

UC Santa Barbara researchers have discovered Salmonella bacteria that are up to 100 times more capable of causing disease. Their findings may help prevent food poisoning outbreaks that continue to plague public health and the food industry.

Related Articles


These "hypervirulent" bugs can override vaccines and pose a risk to food safety -- and mitigation efforts are currently under way.

Previous strategies to find the more dangerous bugs were unsuccessful since they behave like a "Trojan Horse" -- exposing their weapons only when causing disease -- but looking much like their less-virulent cousins in the environment.

Now that scientists know what to look for, they are developing methods to discriminate them from their less-virulent cousins. The researchers have been successful in forcing the bacteria to reveal their weapons in the laboratory -- the first step in combating them.

Salmonella, found virtually everywhere, is the most common cause of foodborne illness in the United States. According to the researchers, the emergence of more powerful strains could eventually overtax the current public health system, which regularly deals with outbreaks from tainted food. Currently, the system is coping with an outbreak that has sickened more than 100 people in 20 states.

Humans usually get Salmonella food poisoning from eating contaminated beef, chicken, eggs, fruits, or vegetables. The threat is exacerbated when these foods are not cooked. And Salmonella control efforts are expensive: Recent estimates place this cost at up to $14.6 billion annually in the U.S.

"Now that we have identified the problem -- and potential solutions -- we just need to get to work," said Douglas Heithoff, lead author of the paper.

This study was launched with support from The G. Harold & Leila Y. Mathers Foundation, which then leveraged additional funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Army, and Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Research Program.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Santa Barbara. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Douglas M. Heithoff, William R. Shimp, John K. House, Yi Xie, Bart C. Weimer, Robert L. Sinsheimer, Michael J. Mahan. Intraspecies Variation in the Emergence of Hyperinfectious Bacterial Strains in Nature. PLoS Pathogens, 2012; 8 (4): e1002647 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1002647

Cite This Page:

University of California - Santa Barbara. "Particularly dangerous Salmonella discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 April 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120418135142.htm>.
University of California - Santa Barbara. (2012, April 18). Particularly dangerous Salmonella discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120418135142.htm
University of California - Santa Barbara. "Particularly dangerous Salmonella discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120418135142.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A touch-free phone developed in Israel enables the mobility-impaired to operate smart phones with just a movement of the head. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A team of scientists led by Danish chemist Jorn Christensen says they have isolated two chemical compounds within an existing antipsychotic medication that could be used to help a range of failing antibiotics work against killer bacterial infections, such as Tuberculosis. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hugging It Out Could Help You Ward Off A Cold

Hugging It Out Could Help You Ward Off A Cold

Newsy (Dec. 21, 2014) Carnegie Mellon researchers found frequent hugs can help people avoid stress-related illnesses. 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