Scientists have discovered how the bacterial enzyme is opposed to the body's fight against infection.
Researchers from the University of Illinois, USA and the UK are learning how infectious microbes survive the attack of the immune system. New strategies are needed to combat the virus, which are currently resistant to treatment.
The work, published in the journal PLOS Pathogens, dedicated to the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus, which is half of humanity. She has the ability to infect almost the whole body. The pathogenic form it is called Staphylococcus aureus resistant to methicillin (MRSA).
The body uses different methods to fight bacteria, including Staphylococcus aureus. "The immune system kills the germs that cause infection - said Professor of Microbiology Thomas Kehl-Fie, who led the research with Kevin Waldron of the University of Newcastle. - However, pathogens have developed ways to subvert the immune response. "
Staphylococcus aureus can overcome one of the main defenses, blocking obtain nutrients. Especially it relates to a bacterial enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD). Unlike other closely related species in Staphylococcus aureus, two SOD enzyme. The team of scientists has discovered that the second SOD increases its ability to resist against the immune system that causes the disease.
Previously it was believed that the SOD are of two kinds: those that required for the operation of manganese, and those that use iron.
The research team identified whether the second enzyme SOD staphylococcal of iron dependent. They found that the enzyme is able to use any metal. Although the existence of SOD, can use iron and manganese, opened a decade ago, such an existence was considered irrelevant to real biological systems. Conclusions of scientists prove the opposite, demonstrating that SOD promote infection.
Scientists have discovered that if the body lacks the manganese, manganese instead of Staphylococcus aureus activates iron. "SOD helps the bacteria to escape from immune defenses - said Waldron. - Such enzymes are present in other pathogenic bacteria. This discovery is important for the future of antibacterial treatments. "
Viruses that are resistant to antibiotics, are more difficult to treat. This encourages health care organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization, the search for new approaches to combat the resistance of bacteria to antibiotics.