Study reveals a way disease bacteria sense antimicrobials and initiate a counter-defense
Source of Article: http://www.uwnews.org
Many living things, from fruit flies to people, naturally produce disease-fighting chemicals, called antimicrobial peptides, to kill harmful bacteria. In a counter move, some disease-causing bacteria have evolved microbial detectors. The bacteria sense the presence of antimicrobial peptides as a warning signal. The alarm sets off a reaction inside the bacteria to avoid destruction.University of Washington (UW) and McGill researchers have revealed a molecular mechanism whereby bacteria can recognize tiny antimicrobial peptide molecules, then respond by becoming more virulent. Their studies were done on the bacterium Salmonella typhimurium. The findings were published in the Aug. 12 edition of the journal Cell.Salmonella typhimurium can contaminate meats such as beef, pork, and chicken, as well as cereals and other foods, and cause severe intestinal illness. Certain strains of the bacteria are difficult to treat, and are behind the increase of salmonellosis in people. Some food science institutes anticipate that virulent strains of salmonella will become more common throughout the food chain. Learning how this sometimes deadly organism fights back against the immune system may lead to treatments that get around bacterial resistance.Work in this area may also suggest ways other disease-causing Gram-negative bacteria maintain a stronghold in the midst of the body's attempts to get rid of them.Strangely enough, the same molecules that the body sends out to help destroy salmonella inadvertently launch bacterial defenses. It is as if missles armed, rather than demolished, the target. The body's antimicrobial peptides bind to an enzyme, PhoQ, which acts as a watchtower and interceptor near the surface of bacterial cell membranes. The peptide binding activates PhoQ, which sets off a cascade of signals. The signals turn on a large set of bacterial genes. Some of the genes are responsible for products that fortify the bacterial cell surface and protect the bacteria from being killed.The research was done in the UW laboratory of Dr. Samuel Miller, professor of microbiology and of medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases. The MIller Lab explores the molecular aspects of bacteria-induced illness, and how disease-causing bacteria interact with cells in the host they have infected, and adapt to environments inside the body, such as the airway.The lead author of the Aug.12 Cell article was Dr. Martin Bader, a UW senior fellow in microbiology and genome sciences.
The research team, under the direction of Miller, included Dr. Sarah Sanowar of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at McGill University; Dr. Margaret Daley, a UW senior fellow in biochemistry; Anna SChneider, a UW undergraduate majoring in mathematics and biochemistry; Uhn Soo Cho, a graduate studenty in biological structure; Dr. Wenqing Xu, assistant professor of biological structure; Dr. Rachel Klevit, professor of biochemistry; and Dr. Herve Le Moual on the McGill Faculty of Dentistry.
retreat center - USA (OR)
Three new Hepatitis-A cases confirmed; total now 23
The three new cases are all in adults. They say they know for sure that two of the new cases have ties to the recent outbreak. People they have come in contact with the three are being given the immune globulin shots.
The health department says they have also have three more new cases pending, meaning they have symptoms that could match Hepatitis-A. They are currently being tested for the virus.
of those are in elementary school aged children. Health department officials want
to remind people in the community that children ages 2 to 5 can still come into
the clinic to get the free Hepatitis-A vaccine.
Aug 17, 2005 : 12:19
information, call the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services at
715-0246 or the Division of Environmental Health's Dairy and Food Protection Branch
Control/Monitoring Systems facilitate HACCP compliance
Source of Article: http://news.thomasnet.com/
August 9, 2005 08:15 - With ability to record and control critical temperatures, XJ500¢ç and web-based XWEB¢ç Systems are suited for restaurants, institutional food service operations, convenience stores, supermarkets, and food process installations. Users can start with Smart Only package with alarms and grow to Internet-based control and supervisory system with ability to see temperatures, compressor, fan, and defrost run times. Alarms can be faxed or e-mailed to multiple locations.
Food safety has never been more important in today¡¯s business climate. You can take the guesswork out of your HACCP program and eliminate human error with the Dixell Control and Monitoring Systems, from Weiss Instruments. Do HACCP Automatically, not Hap Hazard. Now you can record and control the critical temperatures in your operation to assure you are in compliance.
With our XJ500¢ç and XWEB¢ç Systems, you can be alerted to a small problem before it becomes a Big One. If you run a Restaurant, Institutional Food Service Operation, a Convenience Store, Small to Medium Supermarket, a Warehouse Operation or Food Process installation our Monitoring and Control Systems are simple to set up and operate.
Control and monitor reach-in refrigerators, Walk-ins, Freezers, Hot Food Cabinets, Ovens, even ware-washing and lighting control with our compact and economical LED controls. Eliminate mechanical thermostats, time clocks, thermometers and wiring with our iCool¢ç Wireless connections, saving installation costs.
As a modular system, you can start with a simple Smart Only package (with alarms) and grow to a full-blown Internet based Control and Supervisory System. You will see temperatures, compressor, fan, and defrost run times. Alarms can be faxed or e-mailed to multiple locations, on different days of the week. You can set up automatic printing of all your HACCP temperatures as often as you want.
All the power of the Internet to gain access to your operation from any PC, from anywhere. With our Web based Client / Server technology the XWEB¢ç is simple to set up and operate. The XWEB300/3000 is a powerful Web Server combined with the Dixell distributed control system, allows you to start small and grow with your needs. Record, Store, Print, Fax, e-Mail, Alarm, easily, economically and automatically. Dixell from Weiss Instruments . . . NAFEM booth #1030
Weiss Instruments, Inc., 905 Waverly Ave., Holtsville, New York 11742; 631-207-1200; Fax: 631.207.0900
Introduces Two New Tests for Campylobacter and 24 Hr Listeria
Warnex¡¯s new 24-hour Listeria spp.
test for environmental samples has three innovations:
EPA proposes new wastewater bacteria tests (published on 19-Aug-2005)
Source of Article: http://www.edie.net/
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed testing for the presence of four types of bacteria in wastewater and sewage sludge. It centres on culture-based approaches to detecting enterococci and E.coli in wastewater and salmonella and fecal coliform bacteria in sewage sludge. These bacteria are seen as "health indicators" pointing to possible contamination and the need for further investigation and treatment.
no EPA-approved tests were available to detect these bacteria in wastewater. The
new tests will yield results within 24 hours and provide treatment facilities
with an indication of the effectiveness of their treatment techniques. "These
tools have proved reliable through extensive testing and verification. They will
increase our confidence in test results that detect bacteria in waste water and
sewage sludge," said EPA Assistant Administrator Ben Grumbles. "Once
these procedures are in place, they will better protect the public, particularly
children who are often more vulnerable to bacteria-caused illnesses in water."
Source of Article: http://www.ift.org
Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is seeking comments on the financial
impact of its Pathogen Reduction/Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP)
regulations on small and very small plants.
Bacteria Hits Capital Region
Idaho woman identified in Creutzfeldt-Jakob death
None of the cases appeared to be the variant type of the fatal disease, which is usually linked to mad cow disease.
samples of some of their brain material is being analyzed at a university in Ohio
to try to find a link between the women _ and why it's showing up in southern
2000 cases so far in Salmonella Hadar outbreak in Spain associated with consumption
of pre-cooked chicken, July-August, 2005
detects wide array of pathogens
The technique distinguishes live bacterial cells from dead ones, allowing food safety checkers to identify a whole suite of pathogens in food.
Food contamination scares, regulatory measures and the cost of recalls have driven the demand for better pathogen testing equipment in the market.
Microbiologist Robert Levin and doctoral student Shishan Wang at the University of Massachusetts Amherst say the method could help food processors avoid the costs of having to make massive recalls of meat carrying such pathogens as E. coli.
The new method uses a variation of PCR techniques, which scientists use to make lots of copies of a small, specific stretch of DNA. PCR generates large quantities of DNA from tiny samples. It can be used to detect very small quantities of pathogens.
However PCR just copies the designated DNA. It doesn't indicate whether the DNA came from a cell that was dead or alive, information that food testers need when testing samples for organisms that make people sick.
Using PCR, the researchers developed a technique to test seafood for the DNA of Vibrio vulnificus, a disease-causing bacterium from the same family as those that cause cholera.
Levin and Wang treated their bacteria samples with ethidium bromide monoazide (EMA), a chemical that winds its way in between the strands and building blocks of a DNA molecule. EMA will insert itself only into the DNA of the damaged cell membranes of dead or dying bacterium.
After dosing the bacteria with EMA, the researchers zapped their samples with high-intensity visible light. This caused the EMA to form strong, cross-linking bonds with the dead DNA it got tangled up in.
The bonds prevent the DNA molecules from separating, so they can't be copied during PCR. Only DNA from live cells will be copied, alerting the testers to the presence of living bacteria.
¡°Once you've determined the optimum concentrations of EMA you can completely inhibit amplification of DNA from dead cells,¡± Levin stated in research published in the Journal of Microbiological Methods.
The scientists have worked out the protocols for testing for V. vulnificus. The method can be used to test for other harmful bacteria after some minor adjustments are made, they say.