Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

The need to feed programs Campylobacter's 'Sat Nav'

Date:
January 29, 2013
Source:
Norwich BioScience Institutes
Summary:
Researchers have uncovered how the food-borne bacterial pathogen Campylobacter jejuni can change its swimming behavior to find a location with more food.

Campylobacter has long tail-like structures called flagella that it uses for swimming.
Credit: Image courtesy of Norwich BioScience Institutes

A rumbling tummy is our body's way of telling us "it's time for lunch." Likewise, bacteria need to know when it's time to eat.

Researchers at the Institute of Food Research on the Norwich Research Park have uncovered how the food-borne bacterial pathogen Campylobacter jejuni can change its swimming behaviour to find a location with more food.

Campylobacter is the most common cause of bacterial food-borne illness in the UK, with more than 371,000 cases annually. When people get infected, the bacteria need to find their way from the source of contamination, most often undercooked poultry, to the cells lining the gut, passing through thick layers of mucus. In these different locations, Campylobacter must find enough food to sustain itself as well as a suitable environment to carry out respiration, the process of generating energy.

Using a newly developed assay, the researchers found that Campylobacter balances the directions given by two different systems to either seek out more nutritious locations, or to find places where respiration is most efficient. Genetic tools were used to show that the system controlling swimming towards food overrides the other system, suggesting that the "need to feed" is the foremost concern for Campylobacter.

Unlike other food poisoning bugs, such as E. coli or Salmonella, Campylobacter has a whole range of systems that can detect different chemicals in the environment, and alter swimming behaviour accordingly: the 'Sat Nav' of the bacterial world.

The work is published in the journal PLOS ONE. Dr Mark Reuter, the lead author says "we know that Campylobacter can swim, and that this is very important for causing disease, but aimless swimming isn't efficient. The bugs need to know where they want to go."

Discovering how these 'Sat Nav' systems help target the bugs to the site of infection may help prevent future disease, and may be relevant to other food-borne and gut-associated pathogens.

The Institute of Food Research, which is strategically funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, has a research team dedicated to studying Campylobacter. They are looking at what makes Campylobacter such a successful pathogen and to find weaknesses in its biology that could lead to new ways of controlling it.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Norwich BioScience Institutes. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Mark Reuter, Arnoud H. M. van Vliet. Signal Balancing by the CetABC and CetZ Chemoreceptors Controls Energy Taxis in Campylobacter jejuni. PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (1): e54390 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054390

Cite This Page:

Norwich BioScience Institutes. "The need to feed programs Campylobacter's 'Sat Nav'." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 January 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130129190235.htm>.
Norwich BioScience Institutes. (2013, January 29). The need to feed programs Campylobacter's 'Sat Nav'. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130129190235.htm
Norwich BioScience Institutes. "The need to feed programs Campylobacter's 'Sat Nav'." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130129190235.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
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:
from the past week

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