RxPG News Feed for RxPG News

Medical Research Health Special Topics World
  Home
 
   Health
 Aging
 Asian Health
 Events
 Fitness
 Food & Nutrition
 Happiness
 Men's Health
 Mental Health
 Occupational Health
 Parenting
 Public Health
 Sleep Hygiene
 Women's Health
 
   Healthcare
 Africa
 Australia
 Canada Healthcare
 China Healthcare
 India Healthcare
 New Zealand
 South Africa
 UK
 USA
 World Healthcare
 
   Latest Research
 Aging
 Alternative Medicine
 Anaethesia
 Biochemistry
 Biotechnology
 Cancer
 Cardiology
 Clinical Trials
 Cytology
 Dental
 Dermatology
 Embryology
 Endocrinology
 ENT
 Environment
 Epidemiology
 Gastroenterology
 Genetics
 Gynaecology
 Haematology
 Immunology
 Infectious Diseases
 Medicine
 Metabolism
 Microbiology
  Bacteriology
   Salmonella
  Virology
 Musculoskeletal
 Nephrology
 Neurosciences
 Obstetrics
 Ophthalmology
 Orthopedics
 Paediatrics
 Pathology
 Pharmacology
 Physiology
 Physiotherapy
 Psychiatry
 Radiology
 Rheumatology
 Sports Medicine
 Surgery
 Toxicology
 Urology
 
   Medical News
 Awards & Prizes
 Epidemics
 Launch
 Opinion
 Professionals
 
   Special Topics
 Ethics
 Euthanasia
 Evolution
 Feature
 Odd Medical News
 Climate

Last Updated: Oct 11, 2012 - 10:22:56 PM
Bacteriology Channel

subscribe to Bacteriology newsletter
Latest Research : Microbiology : Bacteriology

   EMAIL   |   PRINT
One bacterial cell can stop the growth of another on physical contact

Aug 19, 2005 - 10:29:00 PM
"This has potential implications for new antibiotics," said Low. "If bacteria can do this, then maybe we can do it."

 
[RxPG] Scientists have discovered a new phenomenon in which one bacterial cell can stop the growth of another on physical contact. The bacteria that stop growing may go into a dormant state, rather than dying. The findings have implications for management of chronic diseases, such as urinary tract infections.

The discovery by a team of scientists working in the laboratory of David Low, professor of biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, is reported in the August 19 issue of the journal Science. The findings indicate that Escherichia coli, one culprit in urinary tract infections, contains genes that when turned on block the growth of other E. coli bacteria that they touch. The finding was a complete surprise to the scientists, said Low.

The discovery may eventually lead to new antimicrobial agents to halt bacterial growth which would be an entirely new system to shut bacteria down, according to the scientists. "This has potential implications for new antibiotics," said Low. "If bacteria can do this, then maybe we can do it."

Doctoral student and first author Stephanie Aoki, and a team of scientists working in the Low lab, made the discovery while studying other aspects of E. coli. After working for two years, the team identified two genes required for this "stop on contact" phenomenon.

"We don't know if these 'stopped' cells are dead or alive," said Low. "They don't grow after they've been touched. They don't grow on plates, but laboratory stains show they may be alive. You might call them dead, but they don't break apart the way dead cells do. These cells appear to stay intact, perhaps in a quiescent mode, or dormant state."

Aoki explained, "We are currently exploring how contact between bacteria can inhibit cell growth –– and determining what this contact-dependent inhibition of growth (CDI) system is used for. These genes are present in E. coli, including uropathogenic E. coli that cause urinary tract infections, and similar genes may be present in other pathogens such as the plague bacillus, Yersinia pestis."

Low said that one possible interpretation is that bacteria use this system to eliminate competition in the environments they grow in. "Another possibility is that the bacteria use the CDI system to shut themselves off inside a host, going into a dormant state where they may go undetected by the immune system," he said.

Thousands of women in this country have chronic urinary tract infections, noted the scientists. The disease seems to go away for awhile, then something triggers recurrence of the disease.

Work by Scott Hultrgen at Washington University has indicated that E. coli cells may hide in the walls of the bladder and urinary tract in a dormant state, explained Low. It is possible that the newly discovered CDI system contributes to this process.

"By studying the CDI system, we hope to understand more about how bacteria interact with each other and with their hosts, and how these interactions contribute to disease," said Aoki.

The findings may have repercussions outside of better understanding of urinary tract infections. Other diseases may have similar mechanisms, according to the scientists. "This research is in its infancy, but opens the door for exploration of the roles of contact-dependent growth inhibition in urinary tract infections and possibly other diseases," said Low.

"Aoki has discovered an entirely new phenomenon," explained Low, who has studied E. coli for over 20 years. "It is fascinating that bacteria have developed a system by which one cell can contact another and inhibit its growth."



Publication: August 19 issue of the journal Science
On the web: University of California - Santa Barbara 

Advertise in this space for $10 per month. Contact us today.


Related Bacteriology News
Predatory bacteria attack in 'military-style' waves
The Strange Case of the Radiation-Resistant Bacteria
Evolution of typhoid bacteria
New Treatment Using Human Antibodies to Target Harmful Toxins May Protect Against C. Difficile
Guinea Pig Aerosol Challenge Presents New Model for Q Fever Research in Humans
Gut Bacteria Cospeciating with Plataspid stinkbug
An infectious agent of deception, exposed through proteomics
Gram positive bacterial membrane mystery solved
Salmonella bacteria use RNA to assess and adjust magnesium levels
How deadly toxin botulinum neurotoxin A hijacks cells

Subscribe to Bacteriology Newsletter

Enter your email address:


 Additional information about the news article
Note: Stephanie Aoki can be reached at (805) 893-5598, or by e-mail at aoki@lifesci.ucsb.edu
David Low can be reached at (805) 893-5597, or by e-mail at low@lifesci.ucsb.edu
 Feedback
For any corrections of factual information, to contact the editors or to send any medical news or health news press releases, use feedback form

Top of Page

 
Contact us

RxPG Online

Nerve

 

    Full Text RSS

© All rights reserved by RxPG Medical Solutions Private Limited (India)