Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
PZ HTL SA

Bacteria’s Self-Defense Mechanisms Revealed

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 24 Sep 2012
Image: The toxins normally bind very strongly to the antitoxins and are thus not only inactive, but also prevent the production of more toxin from the information encoded in the bacterial DNA. During the dormant state, however, the antitoxins are degraded, and the toxins released (step 1). The free toxins now bind to unoccupied antitoxins on DNA within the area encoding the toxin-antitoxin couple (step 2). Binding increasing amounts of toxin eventually leads to the release of the molecules from the gene (steps 3 and 4) and finally to new toxin production (Photo courtesy of Ditlev E. Brodersen).
Image: The toxins normally bind very strongly to the antitoxins and are thus not only inactive, but also prevent the production of more toxin from the information encoded in the bacterial DNA. During the dormant state, however, the antitoxins are degraded, and the toxins released (step 1). The free toxins now bind to unoccupied antitoxins on DNA within the area encoding the toxin-antitoxin couple (step 2). Binding increasing amounts of toxin eventually leads to the release of the molecules from the gene (steps 3 and 4) and finally to new toxin production (Photo courtesy of Ditlev E. Brodersen).
Danish researchers have gleaned new insights into how bacteria control the amount of toxin in their cells. The new findings can ultimately lead to the development of novel forms of treatment for bacterial infections.

Many pathogenic bacteria are able to go into a dormant state by making persister cells that are not receptive to conventional antibiotics. This causes serious problems in the treatment of life-threatening disorders such as tuberculosis, where the presence of persister cells often leads to a resurgence of infection following medical treatment.

At the molecular level, the formation of persister cells is due to the presence of toxins that are produced by the bacteria themselves, and which enable them to enter the dormant state. During this hibernation period, the bacteria constantly regulate the amount of toxin at exactly the same level and thus maintain the dormant state.

In an article published online August 20, 2012, in the American scientific journal Structure, the researchers from the department of molecular biology and genetics, Aarhus University (Aarhus, Denmark), new findings that reveal the molecular particulars of the regulatory mechanism of toxins.

By isolating and crystallizing the toxin molecules and their molecular companions--the antitoxins--and by subsequently exposing the crystals to strong X-rays, the scientists gained unique insight into how bacteria control the amount of toxin in the cell.

The new findings can eventually lead to the development of completely new forms of treatment of bacterial infections that work at first by blocking toxin function and production, and consequently by using conventional antibiotics to fight the pathogenic bacteria.

Related Links:
Aarhus University


SLAS - Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening
BIOSIGMA S.R.L.
RANDOX LABORATORIES
comments powered by Disqus

Channels

Genomics/Proteomics

view channel
Image: A 3-dimensional picture reveals how the antibodies in the experimental drug Zmapp bind to Ebola virus (Photo courtesy of the Scripps Research Institute).

Electron Microscope Imaging Shows How Experimental Anti-Ebola Drug Works

Electron microscope imaging has revealed how the experimental drug ZMapp binds to the Ebolavirus and provides insights into how the drug prevents growth of the pathogen. ZMapp, which was developed by... Read more

Drug Discovery

view channel

Omega 3 Found to Improve Behavior in Children with ADHD

Supplements of the fatty acids omega 3 and 6 can help children and adolescents who have a specific kind of have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Moreover, these findings indicate that a customized cognitive training program can improve problem behavior in children with ADHD. Statistics show that 3%–6%... Read more

Biochemistry

view channel

Blocking Enzyme Switch Turns Off Tumor Growth in T-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Researchers recently reported that blocking the action of an enzyme “switch” needed to activate tumor growth is emerging as a practical strategy for treating T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. An estimated 25% of the 500 US adolescents and young adults diagnosed yearly with this aggressive disease fail to respond to... Read more

Lab Technologies

view channel

e-Incubator Technology Provides Real-Time Imaging of Bioengineered Tissues in a Controlled Unit

A new e-incubator, an innovative miniature incubator that is compatible with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), enables scientists to grow tissue-engineered constructs under a controlled setting and to study their growth and development in real time without risk of contamination or damage. Offering the potential to test... Read more

Business

view channel

Two Industry Partnerships Initiated to Fuel Neuroscience Research

Faster, more complex neural research is now attainable by combining technology from two research companies. Blackrock Microsystems, LLC (Salt Lake City, UT, USA), a developer of neuroscience research equipment, announced partnerships with two neuroscience research firms—PhenoSys, GmbH (Berlin, Germany) and NAN Instruments, Ltd.... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2014 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.