HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Scientists decipher genetic code of biothreat pathogen

Rockville, MD More than 2,400 years after Hippocrates first described the symptoms of glanders, scientists have deciphered the genetic code of the ancient pathogen that causes the horse disease: Burkholderia mallei.

The study found that B. mallei, a highly evolved pathogen that has been deployed in the past as a biological weapon, has an extremely regulated set of virulence genes and an unstable genome that may explain the bacterium's ability to thwart the immune responses of its host animals mainly horses, mules and donkeys.

"The combination of virulence genes and genomic instability may explain why some scientists consider this to be the ultimate bacterial pathogen," says William Nierman, the first author of the study, which is being published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

As part of the study, scientists used DNA microarrays to better understand the functions of B. mallei virulence genes. Nierman, an investigator at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR), said the new study, along with a report on the related bacterium B. pseudomallei published in the same issue of PNAS, "has dramatically increased our understanding of the biology and pathogenicity of these very sophisticated pathogens."

Even though the symptoms of glanders have been known since the description by Hippocrates in 425 B.C., scientists have yet to develop a vaccine that is effective against this highly infectious equine disease. When humans are infected, treatment requires a long-term regimen of multiple antibiotics. A test developed by German scientists after B. mallei was isolated in 1882 greatly improved the early detection of the disease in horses. Glanders was eradicated in the United States by the 1930s.

Cultures of B. mallei were used as biological weapons during the U.S. Civil War, World War I and World War II. In addition, there have been reports that the Soviet Union weaponized the pathogen and possi
'"/>

Contact: Robert Koenig
rkoenig@tigr.org
301-795-7880
The Institute for Genomic Research
20-Sep-2004


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Scientists to prototype cyberinfrastructure for research and education access to ocean observatories
2. Scientists sequence genome of kind of organism central to biospheres carbon cycle
3. Scientists find nanowires capable of detecting individual viruses
4. Scientists discover potential new way to control drug-resistant bacteria
5. Scientists explore genome of methane-breathing microbe
6. Stuck on you: Scientists lay bare secrets of bacterial attachment proteins
7. Scientists discover proteins involved in spread of HIV-1 infection
8. Scientists fear new Ebola outbreak may explain sudden gorilla disappearance
9. Scientists reinvent DNA as template to produce organic molecules
10. Scientists visualise cellular handmaiden that restores shape to proteins
11. Scientists identify compounds that mimic calorie restriction

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:9/12/2018)... ... September 12, 2018 , ... JoVE, the leading ... to support the professional development of academic librarians by sponsoring four award-winners to ... were asked to submit successful strategies to increase collaboration among librarians and STEM ...
(Date:9/7/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Sensors Midwest (#SensorsMW18), the event ... Expo & Conference , announces their partnership with Fraunhofer USA Center for Experimental ... Industrial IoT Certification Program. Taking place on October 17, 2018 at the Donald ...
(Date:8/31/2018)... ... August 30, 2018 , ... R3 ... cryogenic freezer program for new clients. The freezers are very convenient for practices ... R3 Stem Cell consist of amniotic and umbilical cord tissue. They are stored ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/13/2018)... (PRWEB) , ... September 13, 2018 , ... Asymmetrex’s ... you think we would have gotten in medicine, if we didn’t have the means ... used to treat patients?” His answer, “Nowhere! And that is what’s holding up ...
(Date:9/7/2018)... ... September 05, 2018 , ... Now available on live stream, the NanoScientific ... Sept. 19, 2018. With a panel of industry leaders from Harvard, Cornell, RPI, IBM, ... industry insights from experts in the field. Register today to be a part ...
(Date:9/1/2018)... ... 31, 2018 , ... Rudina Thanasi, a scientifically validated holistic ... energy treated nutraceutical supplement used in combating inflammation and autoimmune disorders. ... well as, organ-specific inflammation. The reported data is as follows: , More ...
(Date:8/29/2018)... ... August 28, 2018 , ... Inc. ... lenses, has been ranked in 1138th place on the 27th annual Inc. 5000, ... The list represents the most successful companies within the American economy’s most dynamic ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: