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Two-pronged immune response offers hope for effective Salmonella vaccine

Poster's note - with one of my favorite foods being recalled due to salmonella contamination (http://www.microbeworld.org/index.php?option=com_jlibrary&view=article&id=2567)) , this study is of great importance:

In developed countries, nontyphoidal Salmonella (NTS) strains are mainly food-borne and usually cause gastroenteritis. In rare cases, they can lead to bacteraemia (bacterial infections of the blood). However, in the developing world, bacteraemia is far more common and serious: fatality rates can be as high as almost one in four among children under two years old and HIV-infected adults.

In previous research led by Dr Calman MacLennan, scientists based at the Malawi-Liverpool-Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme (MLW) in Blantyre, Malawi , showed that disease-causing strains of NTS were able to survive outside cells in the blood of children. This survival mechanism enables the bacteria to replicate unchecked, possibly leading to high levels of mortality associated with bacteraemia.

Dr MacLennan and colleagues also identified protective Salmonella-specific antibodies that develop in African children within the first two years of life, the period in which the majority of NTS-related cases of bacteraemia occur. These particular antibodies recognise the bacteria in the blood and then kill the bacteria without the help of immune cells. It is possible that these antibodies develop in response to a relatively mild infection by NTS or similar bacteria. Young children who have yet to encounter these bacteria lack the antibodies and are at greatest risk from infection.
 
 

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