July 9, 2012
Salmonella enterica: The Cell Hacker (Disease Cycle Illustrations)
MEDIA ALERT: Graphics available for high impact news content
UC Santa Barbara researchers Michael Mahan and Douglas Heithoff have discovered Salmonella bacteria strains that are 100 times more capable of causing disease--meaning they can cause severe illness or mortality at 1/100th of the concentration of typical Salmonella bacteria strain. Their findings may help prevent food poisoning outbreaks that continue to plague public health and the food industry at a cost of billions of dollars annually in the U.S.
The following illustrations are available to members of the press who wish to pursue a story about this research. Any and all parts of the illustrations are available individually (e.g. If you wish to use just the Salmonella image, or just the "Trojan Horse" image). Please contact Melissa Van De Werfhorst, Marketing Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (805) 893-4301.
Poster: Disease cycle of new hypervirulent strains of Salmonella, PLUS warning signs and fighting back by UCSB researchers. (Click for web-resolution image. Print resolution is available--please contact us.)
Image: Disease cycle of new hypervirulent strains of Salmonella bacteria (Click for web-resolution image. Print resolution is available--please contact us.)
Image: Warning Signs & Fighting Back (Click for web-resolution image. Print resolution is available--please contact us.)
Image: Salmonella "Trojan Horse" (Click for web-resolution image. Print resolution is available--please contact us.)
These strains are particularly insidious because they have evolved the
ability to turn off the host's immune response and septic shock warning
system, effectively spreading unnoticed and creating elevated levels of
toxin throughout the body for three days before any symptoms manifest.
The researchers discovered this strain among livestock animals that were
dying at increased rates that were both alarming and mysterious.
Their discovery presents a tremendous risk to human food safety, according to the researchers, if immediate preventative action isn't taken. Their recommendations include a widescale evaluation of improper adminstration of vaccines and antibiotics in livestock, and also engineering new, more 'intelligent' vaccines.
Heithoff and Mahan are currently working on a cross-protective vaccine that wipes out several virulent strains of Salmonella.
Furthermore, they believe their findings and new vaccine development
will be applicable not just to Salmonella, but to other infectious
Further reading: A news release from earlier this year is available for review at UCSB Public Affairs.
Melissa Van De Werfhorst, Marketing Manager, at email@example.com or (805) 893-4301
Media ContactMelissa Van De Werfhorst