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Cell. 2012 Oct 26;151(3):590-602. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2012.08.042.

A mouse model of Salmonella typhi infection.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY 10032, USA.


Salmonella spp. are gram-negative flagellated bacteria that can cause food- and waterborne gastroenteritis and typhoid fever in humans. We now report that flagellin from Salmonella spp. is recognized in mouse intestine by Toll-like receptor 11 (TLR11). Absence of TLR11 renders mice more susceptible to infection by S. Typhimurium, with increased dissemination of the bacteria and enhanced lethality. Unlike S. Typhimurium, S. Typhi, a human obligatory pathogen that causes typhoid fever, is normally unable to infect mice. TLR11 is expressed in mice, but not in humans, and remarkably, we find that tlr11(-/-) mice are efficiently infected with orally administered S. Typhi. We also find that tlr11(-/-) mice can be immunized against S. Typhi. Therefore, tlr11(-/-) mice represent a small-animal model for the study of the immune response to S. Typhi and for the development of vaccines against this important human pathogen.

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