A major cause of human and animal infections, Staphylococcus aureus bacteria may evade the immune system’s defences and dodge antibiotics by climbing into our cells and then lying low to avoid detection. New research shows how S. aureus makes itself at home in human lung cells for up to two weeks.
A team of 12 researchers from University Hospital of Geneva, Switzerland and the Institute of Food Research, Norwich, UK set out to uncover what S. aureus (6850) did inside human lung epithelial cells (A549) using an in vitro model.
They found that shortly after S. aureus entered the lung cells, the bacteria’s gene expression profile dramatically changed: gene expression for bacterial metabolic functions and transport shut down, putting the bacteria in a dormant state. Simultaneously, production of toxins potentially lethal for the epithelial cells becomes strictly controlled to limit cellular damage. Mechanisms that helped the bacteria to survive and/or multiply, including metabolic and energy production functions, then resumed.
Although most of the bacteria had died by about four days as a result of antibiotic treatment, the team still found viable bacteria in their model system two weeks after infection.
The findings may help in understanding persistent infections, and in designing new antibacterial drugs. S. aureus has not traditionally been considered an intracellular pathogen, but the molecular details that govern its extended persistence remain largely unknown. The bacteria can generate relapsing infections even years after the first episode was apparently cured.
“S. aureus intracellular survival appears related to its capability to adopt a discrete behaviour instead of actively duplicating,” says Patrice Francois, a Geneva-based member of the research team. “S. aureus then benefits from natural or programmed cell death to re-emerge and trigger another episode of infection, leading to chronicity.”
Article: A global view of Staphylococcus aureus whole genome expression upon internalization in human epithelial cells
Christian Garzoni, Patrice Francois, Antoine Huyghe, Sabine Couzinet, Caroline Tapparel, Yvan Charbonnier, Adriana Renzoni, Sacha Lucchini, Daniel P Lew, Pierre Vaudaux, William L Kelley and Jacques Schrenzel
- PHYSICAL SCIENCES
- EARTH SCIENCES
- LIFE SCIENCES
- SOCIAL SCIENCES
Subscribe to the newsletter
Stay in touch with the scientific world!
Know Science And Want To Write?
- Kudos To "The Independent" Newspaper For Debunking Nibiru "Blood Moon" Hoax
- USDA Microbiologist Warns Bacteria In Vaping Products May Be A Health Concern
- Your Microbiome Did Not Cause Your Weight Problem
- Control Cancer By Making The Tumor Cell Environment Hostile
- 20 Cent School Intervention Stops Unhealthy Weight Gain In Children
- Sudden Death In Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy - The Exercise Didn't Do It
- A Great Blitz Game
- "Kent - thanks, glad to have helped :)...."
- "Robert- Thank you for your patience and insight on this matter. I had just heard about this apocalyptic..."
- "Michael (reader who just commented) - I hid your comment as spam for trolling. I have a no trolling..."
- "Hi Robert. Thank you for responding to my comment and the information you kindly provided. I consider..."
- "Yes, it's just totally silly and no-one with a decent background in astronomy would give it any..."
- Breast Cancer: Genomics May Show Where Chemo Might Not Be Needed
- Gallup Poll: Great Example of How to Bias a Social Science Study
- Another Kardashian Craze Debunked
- Fad Friday: Ditch The Body Wrap!
- Commonly Cited Stat of 10 Bacteria for Every 1 Human Cell Is Wrong
- Why The EpiPen And Other Generic Drugs Are So Expensive
- Heart failure in the elderly set to triple by 2060
- Up to 80 percent of heart failure patients denied therapy to reduce hospitalization and death
- Increased risk of death for heart failure patients with each NHS hospital admission
- Nebivolol prevents anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity
- Traffic accidents increased by 50 percent in patients with implantable cardioverter defibrillator