E.coli bacteria reveals how the gut fights infection

Scientists now better understand how the virulent E.coli bacteria block a pathway that would normally protect the intestines from infection.

By using a needle-like structure, the diarrhoea-causing bacteria inject a toxin into the gut cell that stops the infected cell from sending messages to immune cells and preventing the body from responding to the infection.

This allows the bacteria to survive and spread in the gut, causing a range of diseases.

Such infections are particularly serious in young children and can result in diarrhoea and complications like kidney damage.

Read more at University of Melbourne, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, Bio21 Institute