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      Legionella pneumophila: an aquatic microbe goes astray

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      FEMS Microbiology Reviews
      Wiley

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          Abstract

          Legionella pneumophila is naturally found in fresh water were the bacteria parasitize within protozoa. It also survives planctonically in water or biofilms. Upon aerosol formation via man-made water systems, L. pneumophila can enter the human lung and cause a severe form of pneumonia, called Legionnaires' disease. The pathogenesis of Legionnaires' disease is largely due to the ability of L. pneumophila to invade and grow within macrophages. An important characteristic of the intracellular survival strategy is the replication within the host vacuole that does not fuse with endosomes or lysosomes. In recent times a great number of bacterial virulence factors which affect growth of L. pneumophila in both macrophages and protozoa have been identified. The ongoing Legionella genome project and the use of genetically tractable surrogate hosts are expected to significantly contribute to the understanding of bacterium-host interactions and the regulation of virulence traits during the infection cycle. Since person-to-person transmission of legionellosis has never been observed, the measures for disease prevention have concentrated on eliminating the pathogen from water supplies. In this respect detection and analysis of Legionella in complex environmental consortia become increasingly important. With the availability of new molecular tools this area of applied research has gained new momentum.

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          Killing of Caenorhabditis elegans by Pseudomonas aeruginosa used to model mammalian bacterial pathogenesis

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            The molecular ecology of legionellae.

            Legionella pneumophila is the most highly characterized member of a genus of bacteria that survive as intracellular parasites of freshwater protozoa. These bacteria can also multiply intracellularly in human phagocytic cells and cause respiratory disease in humans. Comparison of the invasive strategies of L. pneumophila in mammalian and protozoan cells and study of the interactions between Legionella and protozoa should prove useful in development of strategies for the prevention of legionellosis.
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              Microbiological safety of drinking water.

              Emerging pathogens in drinking water have become increasingly important during the decade. These include newly-recognized pathogens from fecal sources such as Cryptosporidium parvum, Campylobacter spp., and rotavirus, as well as pathogens that are able to grow in water distribution systems, like Legionella spp., mycobacteria, and aeromonads. To perform a risk analysis for the pathogens in drinking water, it is necessary to understand the ecology of these organisms. The ecology of the drinking-water distribution system has to be evaluated in detail, especially the diversity and physiological properties of water bacteria. The interactions between water bacteria and (potential) pathogens in such diverse habitats as free water and biofilms are essential for the survival or growth of hygienically relevant organisms in drinking water. Results of epidemiological studies together with ecological data are the basis for effective resource protection, water treatment, and risk assessment.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                FEMS Microbiology Reviews
                FEMS Microbiol Rev
                Wiley
                1574-6976
                June 01 2002
                June 2002
                June 2002
                June 01 2002
                : 26
                : 2
                : 149-162
                Article
                10.1111/j.1574-6976.2002.tb00607.x
                12069880
                ae76111e-e6ec-4a18-9093-6e5f1c5b5f79
                © 2002
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