News Nanogallery
TODAY JUNE 1, 2020

Bacterial Pathogen May Be Key To Understanding Cancer Development

A research team including University of Central Florida Microbiology Professor Keith Ireton is using the bacterial pathogen Listeria Monocytogenes to understand the mechanisms of cell growth and cancer development. Electron micrograph of a Listeria bacterium in tissue. (Credit: Elizabeth White / Courtesy of CDC)

In research published this month in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, the team found that a Listeria protein called InlB induces internalization and degradation of a human receptor known as Met. Met has been implicated in the development of some cancers.

Lisa A. Elferink at the University of Texas Medical Branch led the team. She and Ireton found that the ability of InlB to induce Met internalization and degradation requires a human protein called Cbl. If scientists could figure out how to control Cbl, such knowledge might lead to the development of drugs that induce the destruction of Met and are useful in treating Met-related cancers.

Ireton is an expert on Listeria monocytogenes, a cause of food poisoning. He has long studied how it enters into cells of the human body, and explains the mechanism in this month's issue of the journal Cellular Microbiology.

"We found that Listeria actually 'provokes' human epithelial cells (cells lining the small intestine) into ingesting bacteria," Ireton said. "When Listeria contacts an epithelial cell, the bacterium causes changes in the cell's 'cytoskeleton' that allow the cell to swallow up the bacterium. We discovered that a human protein called CrkII plays a critical role in stimulating internalization of Listeria by somehow controlling the cytoskeleton."

Listeria is a potentially deadly pathogen, causing abortions in pregnant women and meningitis in those with compromised immune systems, resulting in about a 25 percent mortality rate.

The findings are important in helping to understand and control the spread of bacteria that are a cause of potentially fatal food poisoning. Ireton said the bacteria can live outside animal hosts. Sources include dead plant matter, fruits and vegetables, unpasteurized diary products and meats that have not been properly cooked. Pregnant women and people with compromised immune systems are particularly susceptible.

To avoid contamination, Ireton suggests cooking all meats thoroughly, avoiding dairy products that are not pasteurized and washing all fruits and vegetables thoroughly before consumption.

Ireton earned his Ph.D. at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and completed post-doctoral work at the Pasteur Institute in France -- a private institute dedicated to the treatment of diseases through biomedical research, education and public health. He conducted research and taught at the University of Toronto for several years before joining the Burnett College of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Central Florida in 2006.

Note: This story has been adapted from a news release issued by University of Central Florida.

Bacterial Pathogen May Be Key To Understanding Cancer Development

  All news
Related news:
  • Family-related Issues Top List Of Reasons For Migration Of Immigrant Scientists And Engineers
  • Researchers Develop New Method For Screening Drug-resistant Forms Of HIV
  • Earth And Mars Are Different To The Core, Scientists Find
  • What Happened Before The Big Bang?
  • New Method For Reading DNA Sheds Light On How Cells Define Themselves
  • The cylindrical superstructures are composed of silver nanoparticles with V-shaped amphiphilic arms. The short rod-like and spherical assemblies are made of gold nanoparticles with the same V-shaped amphiphilic arms.  The self-assembly occurs upon slow addition of water to solution of nanoparticles in organic solvent called tetrahydrofuran. The resulting mixture is then dialyzed against pure water in order to remove organic solvent and obtain a pure aqueous solution of the superstructures (they remain in water without any precipitation, just like micelles).
    Nanowerk Nanotechnology Portal



    Nano-news | Nanosuperconductors | Nanofabrication | Nanophenomena | Journals | Web directory | contacts

    20042012 Copyright by
    Design by UpMrk