Abstract: Bacteriophages are regarded as enteric viral indicators in faecally contaminated water systems and may indicate the presence of human viral pollution. They are relatively resistant to inactivation by natural and treatment processes. In this study, the presence of somatic coliphages and F-RNA coliphages was investigated in potable water from rural areas in the North West province. Water samples were aseptically collected from boreholes and tap water from some rural communities in the North West Province. Physical parameters of the water, such as the temperature, pH and turbidity, were measured before sample collection. Double-agar layer assay was performed using ISO, (1995, 2000) standard methods. Bottled water was used as a negative control and the strains фX174 and MS2 as positive controls. Of the 16 water samples collected, 15 were positive for somatic bacteriophages while F-RNA coliphages were detected in only two samples. Amongst the positive samples 189 and three plaque forming units were obtained for both somatic and F-RNA coliphages, respectively. No coliphage was detected in water from Masamane tap 1. The rest of the samples obtained from various rural areas were positive and did not comply with national and international standards for potable water. This was a cause for concern and should be further investigated.
Abstract: Legionella pneumophila is on the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Candidate Contaminant list (CCL) as an important pathogen. It is commonly encountered in recycled water and is typically associated with amoeba, notably Naegleriafowleri (also on the CCL) and Acanthamoeba sp. No legionellosis outbreak has been linked to recycled water and it is important for the industry to proactively keep things that way. A review was conducted examine the occurrence of Legionella and its protozoa symbionts in recycled water with the aim of developing a risk management strategy. The review considered the intricate ecological relationships between Legionella and protozoa, methods for detecting both symbionts, and the efficacy of various disinfectants.
Abstract: Intravascular catheters are among the most commonly inserted medical devices and they are known to cause a large number of catheter related bloodstream infections (BSIs). Biofilms are associated with many chronic infections due to the aggregation of microorganisms. One of these organisms is the fungus Candida albicans. It has shown to be one of the leading causes of catheter-related BSIs. The presence of biofilm on intravascular catheters provide increased tolerance against antimicrobial treatments, thus alternative treatment strategies are sought. Traditionally, many strategies, such as application of combined antimicrobials, addition of antifungals, and removal of catheters, have been practiced, but they were not successful in eradicating BSIs. Since these fungal infections can result in significant morbidity, mortality, and increased healthcare cost, other promising preventive strategies, including antimicrobial lock therapy, chelating agents, alcohol, and biofilm disruptors, have been applied. In this review, current success and failure of these new approaches, and a comparison with the previous strategies are discussed in order to understand which preventative treatment is the most effective in controlling the catheter-related BSIs.
Abstract: This review summarises the findings of a series of studies in which the histological changes, induced in the reproductive system of Fasciola hepatica following treatment of the ovine host with the anthelmintic triclabendazole (TCBZ), were examined. A detailed description of the normal macroscopic arrangement and histological features of the testes, ovary, vitelline tissue, Mehlis’ gland and uterus is provided to aid recognition of the drug-induced lesions, and to provide a basic model to inform similar toxicological studies on F. hepatica in the future. The production of spermatozoa and egg components represents the main energy consuming activity of the adult fluke. Thus the reproductive organs, with their high turnover of cells and secretory products, are uniquely sensitive to metabolic inhibition and sub-cellular disorganisation induced by extraneous toxic compounds. The flukes chosen for study were derived from TCBZ-sensitive (TCBZ-S) and TCBZ-resistant (TCBZ-R) isolates, the status of which had previously been proven in controlled clinical trials. For comparison, flukes collected from flocks where TCBZ resistance had been diagnosed by coprological methods, and from a dairy farm with no history of TCBZ use, were also examined. The macroscopic arrangement of the reproductive system in flukes was studied using catechol/carmine stained whole mounts, and the histology of the main organs was examined using conventional haematoxylin-eosin stained sections. Validation of apoptosis in the fluke sections was carried out using an in situ hybridisation method designed to label endonuclease-induced DNA strand breaks. In TCBZ-S flukes exposed to TCBZ metabolites for 24–96 h in vivo, but not in TCBZ-R flukes, those tissues where active meiosis and/or mitosis occurred (testis, ovary, and vitelline follicles), were found to display progressive loss of cell content. This was due to apparent failure of cell division to keep pace with expulsion of the mature or effete products. Further, actively dividing cell types tended to become individualised, rounded and condensed, characteristic of apoptotic cell death. In the treated TCBZ-S flukes, strong positive labelling indicating apoptosis was associated with the morphologically abnormal cells undergoing mitosis or meiosis in the testis, ovary and vitelline follicles. In treated flukes from field outbreaks of suspected TCBZ-R fasciolosis, no significant histological changes were observed, nor was there any positive labelling for apotosis. On the other hand, sections of TCBZ treated flukes derived from a field case of fasciolosis where TCBZ resistance was not suspected displayed severe histological lesions, and heavy positive labelling for apoptosis. The triggering of apoptosis is considered to be related to failure of spindle formation at cell division, supporting the contention that TCBZ inhibits microtubule formation. In treated TCBZ-S flukes, protein synthesis and transport was apparently inhibited in the Mehlis’ secretory cells, perhaps due to energy uncoupling or to microtubule defects. In the uterus, successful formation of shelled eggs represents the culmination of a complex sequence of cytokinetic, cytological and synthetic activity involving the vitelline follicles, the ovary and the Mehlis’ gland. Histological evidence indicating failure of ovigenesis in TCBZ-S flukes was evident from as early as 24 h post-treatment onwards. Light labelling for apoptosis was associated with the testis of untreated Cullompton (TCBZ-S) and Sligo type 2 (TCBZ-R) flukes, which exhibit abnormal spermatogenesis and spermiogenesis, respectively. This was attributed to apoptosis and to heterophagy of effete germ line cells by the sustentacular tissue. The studies summarised in this review illustrate the potential utility of histological techniques for conveniently screening representative samples of flukes in field trials designed to validate instances of drug resistance. Histology can also be used to test the efficacy of new products against known drug-resistant and drug-susceptible fluke isolates. The account also provides reference criteria for drug-induced histopathological changes in fluke reproductive structures, examination of which may supplement and augment conventional coprological testing, and aid interpretation of TEM findings.
Abstract: Escherichia coli ST131 is a recently emerged and globally disseminated multidrug resistant clone associated with urinary tract and bloodstream infections in both community and clinical settings. The most common group of ST131 strains are defined by resistance to fluoroquinolones and possession of the type 1 fimbriae fimH30 allele. Here we provide an update on our recent work describing the globally epidemiology of ST131. We review the phylogeny of ST131 based on whole genome sequence data and highlight the important role of recombination in the evolution of this clonal lineage. We also summarize our findings on the virulence of the ST131 reference strain EC958, and highlight the use of transposon directed insertion-site sequencing to define genes associated with serum resistance and essential features of its large antibiotic resistance plasmid pEC958.
Abstract: IL-17-producing Th17 cells are of critical importance in host defense against oropharyngeal candidiasis (OPC). Speculation about defective Th17 responses to oral C. albicans infection in the context of HIV infection prompted an investigation of innate and adaptive immune responses to Candida albicans in transgenic mice expressing the genome of HIV-1 in immune cells and displaying an AIDS-like disease. Defective IL-17 and IL-22-dependent mucosal responses to C. albicans were found to determine susceptibility to OPC in these transgenic mice. Innate phagocytes were quantitatively and functionally intact, and individually dispensable for control of OPC and to prevent systemic dissemination of Candida to deep organs. CD8+ T-cells recruited to the oral mucosa of the transgenic mice limited the proliferation of C. albicans in these conditions of CD4+ T-cell deficiency. Therefore, the immunopathogenesis of OPC in the context of HIV infection involves defective T-cell-mediated immunity, failure of crosstalk with innate mucosal immune effector mechanisms, and compensatory cell responses, which limit Candida infection to the oral mucosa and prevent systemic dissemination.