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Trends Mol Med. 2002 Nov;8(11):537-42.

Genetically-modified-animal models for human infections: the Listeria paradigm.

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  • 1Dept of Molecular Biology and Pharmacology, Washington University School of Medicine Campus Box 8103, 660 So. Euclid Ave, St Louis, MO 63110, USA.


Several human pathogens exhibit a restricted host-tropism, relying on the species-specific interaction of microbial ligand(s) with host receptor(s). This specificity accounts for some of the difficulties in modeling human infections in animals. The discovery of L. monocytogenes host-specificity and elucidation of the underlying mechanism has led to the generation of transgenic mice expressing one of its human receptors, E-cadherin. This model is presented here as a paradigm of a genetically-modified-animal model for studying a human infectious disease.

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