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Disease-causing stomach bug attacks energy generation in host cells

Discussion in 'Other health news and research' started by Sly Saint, May 31, 2018.

  1. Sly Saint

    Sly Saint Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Researchers report in a new study that the bacterium Helicobacter pylori - a major contributor to gastritis, ulcers and stomach cancer—resists the body's immune defenses by shutting down energy production within the cells of the stomach lining that serve as a barrier to infection.

    The human stomach is the only known environment where H. pylori exists, Blanke said.

    "When any barrier in the human body is colonized by a pathogen, the immune system sets off a series of predictable counterattacks to reclaim the infected space," he said. "H. pylori cripples these immune counterattacks by going straight to the source of a host cell's power to shut down energy production."

    Using stomach cells and tissues, the team found that H. pylori manipulates the cell from the outside by sending in a toxin to directly target the mitochondria, which serves as the powerhouse where the cell's energy is produced.

    "The toxin disables the mitochondria, resulting in a loss of energy production," Blanke said. "When the cell tries to compensate by reallocating resources from other parts of the cell, a signal is triggered directing the cell to stop production and start breaking things down."

    full article here:

    research here:
    Helicobacter pylori Infection Modulates Host Cell Metabolism through VacA-Dependent Inhibition of mTORC1
    mango, Inara, sea and 17 others like this.
  2. Mij

    Mij Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Yep, I was crawling on the floor by the time I was diagnosed with this infection.
  3. Forbin

    Forbin Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Fascinating stuff. It's interesting that there even is a toxin that can disable the mitochondria without killing the cell. I wonder what it's called.

    I've occasionally wondered if ME might not be directly caused by a pathogen, but rather by a toxin in the gut (produced by a microbe) which is then somehow getting into the blood stream. I don't know how likely that is, but the indirect route of some molecule harming the cells would explain why no one has consistently found a pathogen in the blood. Once the toxin got out of the gut and into the bloodstream, the disease would be more like poisoning than an infection.
    mango, Inara, Skycloud and 5 others like this.
  4. Sisyphus

    Sisyphus Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Dunno what toxin that is, but the CDC and Brit Nih did a fine job of shutting down M.E healthcare production without killing stuff that has a constituency.

    Apologies for the rant. I’m sinking, angry and frustrated.

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