December 17, 2012 at 2:25 am #3256
This research and its findings are fascinating for so many different reasons. If nothing else, it shows why some microbes like Borrelia Burgdorferi or C Diff require strain-dependent identifications to prescribe the right treatment!
Motility helps many pathogens swim through the highly viscous intestinal mucus. Given the differing outcomes of Campylobacter concisus infection, the motility of eight C. concisus strains isolated from patients with Crohns disease (n=3), acute (n=3) and chronic (n=1)
gastroenteritis and a healthy control (n=1) were compared. Following growth on solid or liquid media the eight strains formed two groups; however, the type of growth medium did not affect motility.
In contrast, following growth in viscous liquid medium seven of the eight strains demonstrated significantly decreased motility. In media of increasing viscosities the motility of C. concisus UNSWCD had two marked increases at viscosities of 20.0 and 74.7 centipoises. Determination of the ability of UNSWCD to swim through a viscous medium, adhere to and invade intestinal epithelial cells showed that while adherence levels significantly decreased with increasing viscosity, invasion levels did not significantly change.
In contrast, adherence to and invasion of UNSWCD to mucus-producing intestinal cells increased upon accumulation of mucus, as did bacterial aggregation. Given this aggregation, we determined the ability of the eight C. concisus strains to form biofilms, and showed that all strains formed biofilms.
The paper’s conclusion is concerning and fascinating:
Evidence suggests that provide a reservoir of C. concisus  that could pass into the intestinal tract of humans following ingestion. Based on the results of this study, we hypothesise that strains with higher motility have a greater chance to swim through the intestinal mucus layer and reach the epithelial surface. Once adhered to the epithelium through their flagellum, strains with the proper pathogenicity factors such as the exotoxin 9, which has been associated with the invasive potential of C. concisus , Full article here: http://www.gutpathogens.com/content/pdf/1757-4749-4-22.pdf
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