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Protein proves to be vital in immune response to bacteria

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A team of researchers led by scientists at Rockefeller University have discovered that a protein once thought to be mainly involved in antiviral immunity is in fact more important in fighting bacterial infections and could provide new mechanisms for treating diseases like tuberculosis, which is increasingly becoming resistant to antibiotic medication.

A mutation in the gene that codes for the protein ISG15 was found to increase susceptibility to infection by mycobacteria, a group of bacteria that cause a range of disorders, the most common of which are tuberculosis and leprosy.

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