Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Flu remedies help combat E. coli bacteria

25.08.2015

If the intestinal bacteria level becomes unbalanced, it can cause diseases. Physiologists from the University of Zurich reveal how a specific carbohydrate in the intestinal mucosa heavily multiplies certain E. coli bacteria and thus causes inflammations. These could be treated with flu remedies, which opens up new therapeutic possibilities.

Trillions of bacteria populate the human gut – which makes them more common than any other cells in our body. The composition of this bacterial population is very variable and influenced by our diet.

Diseases, but also antibiotic treatments can induce significant shifts in this equilibrium. If entire bacterial groups suddenly multiply heavily, critical situations occur. They damage the intestinal tissue and cause inflammations. How such shifts are triggered largely remained a mystery.

Physiologists from the University of Zurich have now discovered why the intestinal bacterium Escherichia coli (E. coli) multiplies heavily and has an inflammatory effect.

A carbohydrate causes E. coli to multiply

In their normal state, E. coli are harmless and only make up around 0.1 percent of the intestinal flora. If present in large amounts, however, they can cause diarrhea or a serious intestinal inflammation. The Zurich study reveals that an overproduction of E. coli can be attributed to the availability of the carbohydrate sialic acid, which is found in large amounts in the proteins of the intestinal mucosa.

To actually be able to utilize the sialic acid, the bacteria enlist the aid of the enzyme sialidase, which is released by other intestinal bacteria. “It’s striking that E. coli doesn’t produce this kind of enzyme itself,” explains Thierry Hennet, a professor from the Institute of Physiology at the University of Zurich.

Hennet and his colleagues succeeded in demonstrating the complex chain of events involved in a severe inflammation triggered by E. coli: An injury to the intestinal mucosa initially causes the increased multiplication of a non-pathogenic bacteria, which emits sialidase. This increased enzyme production releases sialic acid, which facilitates an overproduction of E. coli and can thus cause intestinal inflammation.

Sialidase inhibitors combat intestinal inflammations

The researchers also discovered that the intake of a sialidase inhibitor prevents the excessive formation of E. coli and was thus able to alleviate the disease symptoms. Interestingly, such sialidase inhibitors were already developed against the influenza virus. “Derivatives of known flu agents such as Tamiflu and Relenza could therefore also be used for inflammatory intestinal diseases, which opens up new therapeutic possibilities,” says Hennet.

Literature:
Yen-Lin Huang, Christophe Chassard, Martin Hausmann, Mark von Itzstein, Thierry Hennet. Sialic acid catabolism drives intestinal inflammation and microbial dysbiosis in mice. Nature Communications. August 25, 2015. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms9141

Melanie Nyfeler | Universität Zürich
Further information:
http://www.uzh.ch/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Scientists uncover the role of a protein in production & survival of myelin-forming cells
19.07.2018 | Advanced Science Research Center, GC/CUNY

nachricht NYSCF researchers develop novel bioengineering technique for personalized bone grafts
18.07.2018 | New York Stem Cell Foundation

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>