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publicado em 08/02/2013 às 11h00:00
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Researchers discover the origin of the Indian cholera pandemic

Scientists detect the early spread of strains resitestentes 40 years ago in the Bay of Bengal, the largest inlet of the Indian Ocean

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Researchers have used the next-generation sequencing techniques to trace the source and explain the spread of the more recent pandemics of cholera. They also highlighted the impact of antibiotic resistance on outbreaks and showed that resistance was first purchased around 1982.

The genome sequence reveals that the type responsible for the current cholera pandemic can be traced back to an ancestor who first appeared 40 years ago in the Bay of Bengal. From it, cholera spread repeatedly to different parts of the world in several waves.

These findings provide better understanding of the mechanisms behind the spread of cholera, conditions linked to poor hygiene and sanitation and are often found in areas of disasters like the earthquake in Haiti in October 2010. It is estimated that the disease affects 3 million to 5 million people each year, with the number of deaths between 100,000 and 120,000.

The team tracked the spread of disease by analyzing the genomes of the bacterium Vibrio cholerae, taken from 154 patients around the world in the last 40 years. Using the ability to track changes of DNA in the genome of this strain, they were able to map the routes of transmission, helping to plan future health and allowing the 'setback' to the origin of the disease.

They found that the current strain of the bacterium - known as El Tor - has become resistant to antibiotics in 1982 by acquiring the genetic region SXT, who entered the genome of the bacterium at the time, causing global broadcast from the original source. "By comparing the genomes of 154 cases of cholera, we have made important discoveries about how the pandemic has been developed. Our research shows the importance of transmission events in the global spread of the disease. This goes against previous beliefs that anger always arises from local strains and provides useful information for understanding, says the study's senior author, Julian Parkhill of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute.

From the pandemic 40 years ago in the Bay of Bengal, has infected people in the world, including Africa, South Asia and South America "Looking at the past 40 years of transmissions from continent to continent, we find that the Bay of Bengal acts as a reservoir for cholera, where it can thrive and spread. By studying how the disease spreads, our maps of transmission could influence future decisions about how to deal with this disease, "explains one of the authors the study, Nicholas Thomson, Sanger Institute.

The analysis shows that there was a spread of only a single strain of V. cholerae from the Bay of Bengal. The evidence suggests that there were at least three independent overlapping waves intercontinental spread of a common ancestor in the 1950s, representing the original El Tor These movements are strongly correlated with human activity, suggesting that the strain was performed by the human journey. "These findings are opening new avenues for researchers studying all areas of bacterial infection to investigate the genetic changes allow strains to build a resistance to antibiotics, being able to track the transmission of a disease and relate it to the roots. These preliminary findings could be the key to unlocking many other bacterial pandemics, "says first author, Ankur Mutreja, the Sanger Institute.

Professor Balakrish G Nair, director of the National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases in Beliaghata, India, explains that this is the first study that merges with contemporary evolutionary information, the emergence of new variant of Vibrio cholerae and then uses the phylogenetic signatures Intercontinental to control the spread of cholera. These findings in due course will lead us to understand why one begins cholera pandemics in Asia and has spread like a wave around the world, "he added.

   Palavras-chave:   Genome    Disease    Cholera    Strains    Resistant    Antibiotics    Outbreaks    1982    Indian Ocean    Sequencing    Transmission    El Tor   
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