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Cholera makes protein analogous to formin/spire hybrid-like
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Researchers at Harvard Medical School have demonstrated that a type III secretion system (T3SS) is both functional and required for intestinal colonization of Vibrio cholerae in the infant mouse model.


Although T3SS have been associated with pathogenic mechanisms in a wide variety of bacteria, until now T3SS have not been described for V. cholerae. The current study, led by John Mekalanos, PhD, chair of the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, was based on his earlier research which identified a strain of V. cholerae that does not contain virulence factors but does contain components of T3SS. The new findings, which appear in the April 19 issue of Cell Host & Microbe, show that T3SS provide an alternate colonization mechanism that makes a protein analogous to formin/spire hybrid-like actin and causes changes in the cytoskeleton.

Harvard Medical School has nearly 8,000 full-time faculty working in eight academic departments based at the School's Boston quadrangle or in one of 47 academic departments at 18 Harvard teaching hospitals and research institutes. Those Harvard hospitals and research institutions include Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Cambridge Health Alliance, the CBR Institute for Biomedical Research, Children's Hospital Boston, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Forsyth Institute, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Joslin Diabetes Center, Judge Baker Children's Center, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Massachusetts General Hospital, Massachusetts Mental Health Center, McLean Hospital, Mount Auburn Hospital, Schepens Eye Research Institute, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, and VA Boston Healthcare System.


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