Toward pinpointing the location of bacterial infections

January 2, 2007

In an advance in the emerging field of bacterial imaging, scientists are reporting development of a method for identifying specific sites of localized bacterial infections in living animals. Bradley D. Smith at the University of Notre Dame and colleagues describe the method in a report scheduled for the Jan. 10 edition of the Journal of the American Chemical Society, a weekly publication.

The researchers previously discovered fluorescent molecular probes containing zinc that could be used to discriminate between common pathogenic bacteria -- such as E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus -- and mammalian cells. In new research, they report using the probes to pinpoint the sites of staph infections in living laboratory mice. In everyday medicine, physicians may have difficulty distinguishing localized bacterial infections from sites of sterile inflammation.

"Bacterial imaging is an emerging technology that has many health and environmental applications," the researchers note. "For example, there is an obvious need to develop highly sensitive assays that can detect very small numbers of pathogenic bacterial cells in food, drinking water, or biomedical samples. In other situations, the goal is to study in vivo the temporal and spatial distribution of bacteria in live animals."

Source: American Chemical Society

Explore further: Small molecule inhibitor prevents or impedes tooth cavities in a preclinical model

Related Stories

Researchers discover how CRISPR proteins find their target

July 20, 2017

Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have discovered how Cas1-Cas2, the proteins responsible for the ability of the CRISPR immune system in bacteria to adapt to new viral infections, identify the site in ...

How the human body first fights off pathogens

July 24, 2017

People constantly encounter viruses, bacteria or parasites. Fortunately, our skin, the specialized lining of our guts and other parts of our body that are exposed to the outside world prevent them from entering. When a pathogen ...

Dangerous bacteria a true survivor

June 14, 2017

Infectious bacteria E. coli can defend itself and grow in acidic and copper-rich human environments a new University of Queensland study suggests.

Recommended for you

Sharp X-ray pulses from the atomic nucleus

August 17, 2017

X-rays make the invisible visible: they permit the way materials are structured to be determined all the way down to the level of individual atoms. In the 1950s it was x-rays which revealed the double-helix structure of DNA. ...

Ancient species of giant sloth discovered in Mexico

August 17, 2017

Mexican scientists said Wednesday they have discovered the fossilized remains of a previously unknown species of giant sloth that lived 10,000 years ago and died at the bottom of a sinkhole.

TDRS: An era of continuous space communications

August 17, 2017

More than 50 years ago, at the dawn of human spaceflight, the first brave astronauts were only able to communicate with mission control operators on Earth for about 15 percent of each orbit. If this were true today, the International ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.