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Biochem Soc Trans. 2012 Aug;40(4):842-5. doi: 10.1042/BST20120057.

BLF1, the first Burkholderia pseudomallei toxin, connects inhibition of host protein synthesis with melioidosis.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, University Of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield, UK.


Melioidosis is a disease caused by infection with Burkholderia pseudomallei. The molecular basis for the pathogenicity of B. pseudomallei is poorly understood. However, recent work has identified the first toxin from this bacterium and shown that it inhibits host protein synthesis. Here, we review the illness that is potentially associated with biological warfare, the pathogen and its deadly molecular mechanism of action, as well as therapeutic developments that may follow.

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