Dr. Engel and colleagues show that Chlamydia
coat themselves with a growth factor made by the cells of the organism they are infecting. This disguise allows the bacteria to infect cells, much like a Trojan horse. Once inside, Chlamydia
induces the host cell to churn out more of the growth factor. This production of excess growth factor enables more of bacteria to camouflage themselves and infect other cells creating a positive feedback loop which enhances bacterial infection and spread.
is the leading cause of non-congenital blindness in developing countries and is the number one cause of sexually transmitted disease and non-congenital infertility in Western countries. Understanding the molecular mechanisms of the host-pathogen interactions of Chlamydia
infections will lead assist in the development of novel therapeutics, diagnostics, and preventative strategies.