Friday, September 19, 2014

Pneumonia-causing bacteria shown to invade heart muscle

I always enjoy the weekly update from The Scientist, received in my email inbox every Friday.  This week, an excellent summary of research published in PLOS Pathogens caught my eye.

Here, a snippet from Molly Sharlach's news article:
“Researchers from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA) and their colleagues found that mice and rhesus macaques infected with Streptococcus pneumoniae developed myocardial microlesions, which were also present in human autopsy samples. 
“Study coauthor Carlos Orihuela, a microbiologist and immunologist at UTHSCSA, remarked, 'This is sort of a big deal. It’s a brand new disease pathology for a very old bug.' 
“'This is the first report in over 120 years of research with Streptococcus pneumoniae to say that the bacteria actually invade heart tissue,' added Orihuela.“
A.O. Brown et al., “Streptococcus pneumoniae translocates into the myocardium and forms unique microlesions that disrupt cardiac function,” PLOS Pathogens, doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1004383, 2014.

For some background reading, try this ebook from Springer, accessible through OBIS:
Molecular pathology of lung diseasesedited by Dani S. Zander ... [et al.] New York : Springer, c2008

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