Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Scientists discover bacteria that can cause bone infections

13.10.2008
Scientists have discovered that a bone infection is caused by a newly described species of bacteria that is related to the tuberculosis pathogen.

The discovery may help improve the diagnosis and treatment of similar infections, according to an article published in the October issue of the International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology.

Some rare genetic diseases can make patients susceptible to infections with Mycobacterium species, the bacteria that amongst other diseases, cause tuberculosis and leprosy. These patients often suffer from recurring mycobacterial infections throughout their whole lives. Because of this, researchers are trying to identify unusual species that cause disease in order to improve treatment strategies.

"We isolated an unknown species of bacteria from a 7 year old child who has a genetic immune defect," said Dr Didi Bang from Statens Serum Institut in Copenhagen, Denmark. "The infection had caused bone lesions and this is where we found the newly described bacteria."

Mycobacterial infections can be very difficult to treat. The bacteria have unique cell walls that protect them from several antibiotics. As well as being resistant to treatment, they can also survive attack with acids, alkalis and detergents. Most mycobacterial infections can be treated with antibiotics such as clarithromycin and rifamycins, but some species are becoming resistant to these antibiotics, so new drugs for treatments must be developed.

"Initial tests suggested we had found a Mycobacterium. By sequencing some of the bacterium's genes we showed that we had discovered an undescribed species," said Dr Bang. "We called the bacterium Mycobacterium arosiense. The name comes from Arosia, the Latin name of the city of Aarhus in Denmark, which is where the bacterium was first found. We showed the position of the new bacterium on the Mycobacterium family tree by sequencing genes and comparing them to related bacteria."

The new pathogen is closely related to Mycobacterium intracellulare and Mycobacterium avium, which cause a lung disease similar to tuberculosis in people, especially those with weak immune systems such as HIV patients that are immunologically suppressed. It is rod-shaped and grows slowly.

"Mycobacterium arosiense can be killed by several antibiotics in the lab, including clarithromycin and rifamycins. However, resistance to fluoroquinolones and isoniazid was observed," said Dr Bang. "Little knowledge is available on performing resistance tests on mycobacteria other than tuberculosis."

"We hope that this discovery will help doctors to diagnose similar diseases in the future and that further investigation may improve the treatment of people with similar infections."

Lucy Goodchild | alfa
Further information:
http://www.sgm.ac.uk

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Switch-in-a-cell electrifies life
18.12.2018 | Rice University

nachricht Plant biologists identify mechanism behind transition from insect to wind pollination
18.12.2018 | University of Toronto

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Data storage using individual molecules

Researchers from the University of Basel have reported a new method that allows the physical state of just a few atoms or molecules within a network to be controlled. It is based on the spontaneous self-organization of molecules into extensive networks with pores about one nanometer in size. In the journal ‘small’, the physicists reported on their investigations, which could be of particular importance for the development of new storage devices.

Around the world, researchers are attempting to shrink data storage devices to achieve as large a storage capacity in as small a space as possible. In almost...

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Pressure tuned magnetism paves the way for novel electronic devices

18.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

New type of low-energy nanolaser that shines in all directions

18.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA research reveals Saturn is losing its rings at 'worst-case-scenario' rate

18.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>