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PLoS One. 2012;7(7):e42007. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0042007. Epub 2012 Jul 24.

Extensive in vivo resilience of persistent Salmonella.

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  • 1Focal Area Infection Biology, Biozentrum, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland.


Chronic infections caused by persistent pathogens represent an important health problem. Here, we establish a simple practical mouse Salmonella infection model for identifying bacterial maintenance functions that are essential for persistency. In this model, a substantial fraction of Salmonella survived even several days of treatment with a potent fluoroquinolone antibiotic indicating stringency of the model. Evaluation of twelve metabolic defects revealed dramatically different requirements for Salmonella during persistency as compared to acute infections. Disrupted synthesis of unsaturated/cyclopropane fatty acids was the only defect that resulted in rapid Salmonella clearance suggesting that this pathway might contain suitable targets for antimicrobial chemotherapy of chronic infection.

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