142nd Day Of Lockdown

Maharashtra54831338184318650 Tamil Nadu3145202563135278 Andhra Pradesh2641421709242378 Karnataka1964941126333511 Delhi1494601343184167 Uttar Pradesh140775887862280 West Bengal98459671202059 Telangana8647563074665 Bihar8274154139450 Gujarat71064542382652 Assam5883842326145 Rajasthan5249738235789 Odisha4592731785321 Haryana4163534781483 Madhya Pradesh3902529020996 Kerala3811424922127 Jammu and Kashmir2489717003472 Punjab2390315319586 Jharkhand185168998177 Chhatisgarh12148880996 Uttarakhand96326134125 Goa871259575 Tripura6161417641 Puducherry5382320187 Manipur3752204411 Himachal Pradesh3371218114 Nagaland30119738 Arunachal Pradesh223115923 Chandigarh1595100425 Meghalaya11154986 Sikkim9105101 Mizoram6203230
Lifestyle Health and Wellbeing 09 Apr 2019 Hospital pathogens o ...

Hospital pathogens outlive all forms of oral bacteria

ANI
Published Apr 9, 2019, 1:00 pm IST
Updated Apr 9, 2019, 1:00 pm IST
Study explains how a pathogen causes hospital infections.
In their natural environment of the oral cavity, Klebsiella is considered an underdog. (Photo: Representational/Pixabay)
 In their natural environment of the oral cavity, Klebsiella is considered an underdog. (Photo: Representational/Pixabay)

Washington: Our mouth is home to hundreds of different bacterial species; a few of these oral bacteria are known pathogens. In a recent study, scientists have discovered that three closely related species of bacteria belonging to the family Enterobacteriaceae, known to cause infection in hospitals, outlived all other oral bacteria in long-term starvation or 'doomsday' experiment.

The findings of the study published in the 'Journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences', help explain how certain dangerous bacteria are able to persist in a sterile hospital environment and infect patients.

 

Scientists know the genetic makeup of about 70 per cent of oral bacteria. What they don't know is which species would live the longest without nutrients in a 'battle royale', so they decided to find out.

To create a battle of bacteria, researchers placed hundreds of samples of oral bacteria from human saliva into test tubes. The bacteria, which are accustomed to living in the nutrient-rich mouth, were starved in their new environment. Each day, scientists checked the samples to see which bacteria were still alive.

Nearly every bacterial species died within the first couple of days. But three species- Klebsiella pneumoniae, Klebsiella oxytoca, and Providencia alcalifaciens- survived the longest, with Klebsiella pneumoniae and Klebsiella oxytoca surviving for more than 100 days.

 

Researchers were surprised to find that Klebsiella was among the champions of this bacterial combat. In their natural environment of the oral cavity, Klebsiella is considered an underdog.

They account for only about one per cent of all microbes in the mouth. But in an extreme environment deprived of all nutrients, Klebsiella reigned supreme while the bugs normally found in high abundance rapidly died off.

How did Klebsiella pull off such a feat? To answer this question, scientists analysed the genome of the bacteria on the first day of 'battle' and then again on day 100.

 

"When we look at the genome content, it turns out that these Enterobacteriaceae species have larger genomes than other oral bacteria, giving them the capacity to tap into more diverse energy sources," said Dr Xuesong He, a co-author of the study.

The researchers found that the Klebsiella had undergone genetic mutations that may have allowed them to survive and continue to function, even without a food source.

Scientists describe Klebsiella species as opportunistic pathogens. In healthy people, they live in the mouth peacefully, crowded by other microbes and unable to grow or cause trouble.

 

But outside the mouth, where few other bacteria survive, Klebsiella is king. They persist on hospital surfaces, like sinks or tables. If a patient with a compromised immune system makes contact with Klebsiella, that patient could develop an infection.

...




ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT