DIARRHEAL INFECTIONS CAUSE DEHYDRATION AND MALNUTRITION, KILLING OVER A MILLION PEOPLE ANNUALLY.
These disorders, caused by bacteria like E. coli, have no vaccination. Bacterial illnesses require the body to destroy or impair intruders.
Asymptomatic carriage occurs when the body impairs the bacteria, allowing the infection to spread without diarrhea.
Salk scientists have demonstrated that mixing certain diets with disease-causing bacteria might produce permanent immunity in mice without producing illness, suggesting a new vaccination technique.
On June 23, 2023, Science Advances published its findings, which could lead to novel vaccinations for diarrheal illnesses & other infections.
“If we allow the bacteria to retain some of its disease-causing behavior, we can immunize against diarrheal infections,”
Explains senior author Professor, Salk Institute Legacy Chair & head of the Molecular & Systems Physiology Laboratory.
“This insight could lead to vaccines that reduce symptoms, mortality, & future infections.”
In 2018, Ayres' study examined how dietary modifications can induce an asymptomatic illness, which Ayres calls a cooperative interaction between bacteria and host.
An iron-rich diet allowed mice to withstand a fatal bacterial infection without getting sick.
Bacteria fed on the mice's unabsorbed glucose from the high-iron diet.
The excess sugar "bribed" the germs to not assault the host by keeping them full.
The adaptive immune system (cells & proteins that "remember" infections) may be implicated in this long-term asymptomatic infection with the bacteria.
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