Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Neglect

Another reason why Haemophilus research needs funding can be found in a recent news item from Science, showing that compared to other major "neglected" diseases, bacterial pneumonia and meningitis has by far the highest ratio of disease burden to R&D funding (as well as the highest disease burden overall)...
Adapted from the Science news item:
While a host of bacterial species can cause such illnesses, studies into Haemophilus biology can shed light on Pasteurellaceae biology in general. In particular, the work of the Redfield Lab investigates both the mechanism and consequences of natural competence, a means by which bacteria can share genetic information, despite their putative asexual lifestyles. Studying competence mechanisms may reveal novel drug targets, while studying the consequences of competence may help epidemiologists understand the spread of haplotypic changes in competent bacteria.

References:
Enserink (2009)
Moran et al. (2009)

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