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January 18, 2012

E.coli triggers urinary infections!

Do you know the triggering process of E.coli with urinary infections? Researchers have unravelled the process by which an E.coli strain triggers urinary tract infections & also induces the bladder to shed cells. A-hemolysin (HlyA), a toxin secreted by many strains of E.coli may play an important, unexpected role during both the establishment & persistence of urinary tract infections (UTI).

According to the journal Cell Host & Microbe report, UTIs are among the most common infectious diseases worldwide. Each year, 15 million women have a UTI & nearly 50% of women will have art least one UTI in their lifetime. Bugs known as uropathogenic E.coli (UPEC) are leading cause of both acute & chronic urinary tract infections. 

UPEC invade cells on the surface of the bladder, where it can stimulate exfoliation, or shedding of bladder cells. Matthew Mulvey, associate professor of pathology at the University of Utah & study co-author says, exfoliation of bladder cells can be viewed as a double-edged sword since it may benefit both the host & the invading bacteria. 

According to an Utah statement Mulvey said that while shedding helps to get rid of infected cells, it can also promote spread of the bacteria both within & outside of the urinary tract. The goal of their investigation was to uncover possible mechanisms by which UPEC might prime bladder cells for shedding. 

Mulvey & Bijaya Dhakal, Utah post-doctoral fellow in pathology, found that whem UPEC infect bladder cells, they either multiply or persist in an inactive state for days or even weeks. This persistence creates intracellular reservoirs of bacteria, which are thought contribute to chronic or recurrent infections. 

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