Medindia
Advertisement

Bacteria Beat Immune Systems

by Colleen Fleiss on July 30, 2019 at 12:38 AM
Font : A-A+

Bacteria Beat Immune Systems

A new research has found that the evolution of more severe infections is not necessarily driven by bacteria multiplying faster. A new study - led by the University of Exeter - shows pathogen virulence and replication rates can evolve separately.

Humans and animals can develop resistance to harmful bacteria (pathogens) over time or with antibiotics or vaccines, and it is usually assumed that pathogens respond by multiplying faster.

Advertisement


The authors believe that, once resistance spreads in host species, virulence may be driven by other means such as by manipulating host immune systems.

The research examined the spread of bacteria called Mycoplasma gallisepticum among house finches - a rare example of a well-studied host-bacteria evolution where humans have not intervened with antibiotics or vaccines.
Advertisement

"We actually have a very poor understanding of how pathogens evolve in response to natural host resistance," said Dr Camille Bonneaud, of the Centre of Ecology and Conservation on Exeter's Penryn Campus in Cornwall.

"This is because there are very few systems in the wild that have been monitored in sufficient detail, without being subjected to human intervention.

"We typically assume that pathogens respond to host resistance (including to vaccines) by increasing their rate of replication, allowing them to transmit faster to other hosts before they are cleared by their current host.

"We hypothesise that the increase in virulence that we observed in this study was driven by an improved ability of the pathogen to manipulate the host immune system in order to generate the symptoms necessary for its transmission."

The authors say this could lead to new approaches for tackling pathogens.

For example, if trying to kill the pathogen inevitably leads to more virulent infections, it might be worth trying to slow down pathogen evolution by combining treatments that both eliminate the pathogen and prevent it manipulating host immune systems.

Some populations of house finches have been exposed to Mycoplasma gallisepticum for more than 20 years, while others have not - and have therefore not developed resistance.

In the study, carried out in Arizona and supported by Arizona State University and Auburn University, 57 finches from previously unexposed populations were exposed to the pathogen.

The findings show virulence has increased consistently over more than 150,000 bacterial generations since outbreak (1994 to 2015).

By contrast, while replication rates increased from outbreak to the initial spread of resistance (1994 to 2004), no further increases have occurred subsequently (2007 to 2015).

Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Sedentary Behavior Precipitates Night-Time Hot Flashes
Gonorrhea
World Alzheimer's Day 2021 - 'Know Dementia, Know Alzheimer's
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Shigellosis MRSA - The Super Bug Myasthenia Gravis Food Safety for Health Antibiotics 

Recommended Reading
Natural Antibiotics to Fight Bacterial Infections
Fighting infections the natural way and preventing them is always more effective than consuming ......
New Agent That Makes People Vulnerable to Bacterial Infections Discovered
Scientists have identified USP18, a double agent in the immune system that makes people vulnerable ....
Immunotherapy Could Fight Deadly Bacterial Infections
A new way to use immunotherapy to treat deadly bacterial infections as well as destroy cancer cells ...
Test your Knowledge on Antibiotic Resistance
Antibiotic resistance is a growing public health concern that has reached gigantic proportions. ......
Antibiotics
Antibiotics are among the most used and abused medications. This article explains some general featu...
MRSA - The Super Bug
MRSA infection is the most dreaded hospital or community acquired infection that can become ......
Myasthenia Gravis
Myasthenia gravis is the commonest disorder of neuromuscular transmission. Autoimmune myasthenia gra...
Shigellosis
Shigellosis or Bacillary Dysentery is a common cause of gastro-enteritis worldwide and can cause blo...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use