Patho-biotechnology; using bad bugs to make good bugs better

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Given the increasing commercial and clinical relevance of probiotic cultures, improving their stress tolerance profile and ability to overcome the physiochemical defences of the host is an important biological goal. Pathogenic bacteria have evolved sophisticated strategies to overcome host defences, interact with the immune system and interfere with essential host systems. We coin the term `patho-biotechnology' to describe the exploitation of these valuable traits in biotechnology and biomedicine. This approach shows promise for the design of more technologically robust and effective probiotic cultures with improved biotechnological and clinical applications as well as the development of novel vaccine and drug delivery platforms.

Keywords: Listeria; drug delivery; infection; patho-biotechnology; pathogen; probiotics; stress; vaccination; virulence factor

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Health Research Board, Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre, Cork, Republic of Ireland

Publication date: March 31, 2007

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