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How hosts recognize bacteria

We are surrounded by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. The fact that we nevertheless do not fall prey to infections is thanks to certain cellular sensor molecules such as toll-like receptors (TLR), which recognize the molecular structure of pathogens and intercede by ensuring an often completely unnoticeable elimination of the invaders.

Their immune-activating abilities were only detected in 1998, a discovery which was awarded with the Nobel Prize. Now, an international research team led by Prof. Dr. Carsten Kirschning of the Institute of Medical Microbiology at the University hospital Essen and the University of Duisburg-Essen and PD Dr. Hubertus Hochrein is examining the complex recognition of bacteria. Their findings have been published in the research journal Science.

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