• ArtsandLectures twitter avatar
    RT @terragalleria: FYI “Treasured Lands” sold out in a month from publisher & Amazon, 3rd party copies may not last long https://t.co/MIV5v…
    6 hours 14 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    .@UCSBMensSoccer shuts out Sac State to clinch fourth straight @BigWestMSOC North Title, first round bye! RECAP >>>… https://t.co/1UbVzyLJAh
    7 hours 43 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    No. 5 UCSB Moves Up Two Spots In Rankings Heading Into Matchup With No. 18 UCI https://t.co/CDVMIkaUY4
    9 hours 28 sec ago
  • ucsantabarbara twitter avatar
    #UCSB ranks No. 24 among the top 1,000 universities in the world! #GoGauchos #BestGlobal https://t.co/s2bWeN56By
    9 hours 44 min ago
  • ArtsandLectures twitter avatar
    RT @nehalPjoshi: Saw #sellbuydate a few weeks ago & still marveling at @jonesarah. Every actor should see her specific meticulous work. @M
    11 hours 20 sec ago
  • ArtsandLectures twitter avatar
    RT @terragalleria: RT @vcstar Nature photographer Q.T. Luong will be at UCSB Nov. 2, sharing his work. https://t.co/mNUnQhBUJC
    11 hours 49 sec ago
  • ArtsandLectures twitter avatar
    A great introduction to the music & magic of @NekoCase: The 12 Best Neko Case Songs, according to @pastemagazine https://t.co/M4rwUM8dfh
    11 hours 1 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    UCSB Finishes 9th at Saint Mary's Invitational; Swanson is 9th https://t.co/XzcXoykWFn
    11 hours 59 min ago
  • ArtsandLectures twitter avatar
    Funk titan @MaceoParker is opening up his sound check to the public. See a living legend at work, tomorrow at 4pm!… https://t.co/HGABPXjm5z
    12 hours 23 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    UCSB Picked 4th in Big West Media Poll; Vincent Named to Preseason All-Conference Team https://t.co/sOYy2LdUiF
    12 hours 34 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    .@UCSBMensSoccer vs. Sacramento State is live! Audio: https://t.co/NWB5rDzaIb Live Stats: https://t.co/Dseq5Dl4Ro
    12 hours 45 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    .@UCSBMensSoccer clinches Big West North title, bye in 1st rd of Big West Tourney w/ win or draw at Sac State!
    12 hours 52 min ago
  • UCSBgauchos twitter avatar
    .@UCSBMensSoccer Starting XI vs. Sac St: Le Roux, Pero, Quezada, Salgado, Perez, Ilskens, Batista, Feucht, Pando, DePuy, Selemani
    12 hours 52 min ago
  • UCSB_GradPost twitter avatar
    Stress less in grad school! https://t.co/MMWLr9EwyV #UCSB #ucsbgradpost
    14 hours 12 min ago
  • ArtsandLectures twitter avatar
    Preview the amazing story of the rebirth of Africa's lost Eden, #Gorongoza, with @BobPoole's stunning footage https://t.co/sRrodm1gpF
    15 hours 33 min ago

UCSB Researchers Discover Particularly Dangerous Salmonella

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 - 17:00
Santa Barbara, CA

UC Santa Barbara researchers have discovered Salmonella bacteria that are up to 100 times more capable of causing disease. Their findings may help prevent food poisoning outbreaks that continue to plague public health and the food industry.

These "hypervirulent" bugs can override vaccines and pose a risk to food safety –– and mitigation efforts are currently under way.

Previous strategies to find the more dangerous bugs were unsuccessful since they behave like a "Trojan Horse"— exposing their weapons only when causing disease — but looking much like their less-virulent cousins in the environment.

Now that scientists know what to look for, they are developing methods to discriminate them from their less-virulent cousins. The researchers have been successful in forcing the bacteria to reveal their weapons in the laboratory –– the first step in combating them.

Salmonella, found virtually everywhere, is the most common cause of foodborne illness in the United States. According to the researchers, the emergence of more powerful strains could eventually overtax the current public health system, which regularly deals with outbreaks from tainted food. Currently, the system is coping with an outbreak that has sickened more than 100 people in 20 states.

Humans usually get Salmonella food poisoning from eating contaminated beef, chicken, eggs, fruits, or vegetables. The threat is exacerbated when these foods are not cooked. And Salmonella control efforts are expensive: Recent estimates place this cost at up to $14.6 billion annually in the U.S.

"Now that we have identified the problem –– and potential solutions –– we just need to get to work," said Douglas Heithoff, lead author of the paper.

The research, "Intraspecies Variation in the Emergence of Hyperinfectious Bacterial Strains in Nature," is published in this week's edition of the journal PLoS Pathogens.

This study was launched with support from The G. Harold & Leila Y. Mathers Foundation, which then leveraged additional funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Army, and Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Research Program.

To read the paper, visit: http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1002647








Top image: Salmonella typhimurium (red) invades cultured human cells in this color-enhanced scanning electron micrograph.
Credit: Rocky Mountain Laboratories, NIAID, NIH



†† Bottom image: Researchers Michael Mahan, left, and Douglas Heithoff have devised methods to detect and discriminate more harmful forms of Salmonella bacteria.
Credit: Sonia Fernandez


Michael J. Mahan
KCLU interview