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Ann-Mari Svennerholm research groups

Infection and immunity studies of ETEC and Helicobacter pylori
Gastrointestinal infections, water and health

Infection and immunity studies of ETEC and Helicobacter pylori

 Group Leader: Ann-Mari Svennerholm (Professor, M.D., Ph.D.), Pia Forberg (Research engineer/BMA), Anna Lundgren (Ph.D.), Matilda Nicklasson (Ph.D. student), Åsa Sjöling (Ph.D.), Joshua Tobias (Ph.D.), Gudrun Wiklund (Research engineer/BMA) and others

Enteroxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) is the most common cause of diarrhea in developing countries and in travelers to these areas. We study the prevalence of such bacteria and their virulence factors in different countries and populations, using specific monoclonal antibody and molecular diagnostic methods (e.g. gene probes and PCR). We also analyze the expression of different ETEC virulence factors during clinical infection as compared to during growth in vitro, and we try to identify protective immune mechanisms against ETEC both in animal studies and by studying infections and re-infections with ETEC in birth cohort studies, e.g. in Bangladesh.

Work is also in progress to develop an effective ETEC vaccine. Studies are in progress to evaluate the influence of different nutritional factors including breastfeeding for vaccine efficacy. These studies are conducted in close collaboration with scientists in different developing countries, e.g. in Bangladesh, Egypt, Guatemala, Mexico and Bolivia.

Since H. pylori is one of the most common gastrointestinal infections that primarily infect young children, in particular in developing countries, we are studying infection with these bacteria and development of immune responses during the first years of life in a high endemic area. This includes studies to evaluate the role of maternal immunity and also if protective immunity can develop in young infants that may explain spontaneous eradication. We are also comparing mucosal immune responses in Swedish and Bangladeshi asymptomatic carriers and duodenal ulcer patients as a background for development of anH. pylori vaccine that can be used worldwide.

Lundgren A, Trollmo C, Edebo A, Svennerholm A-M and Lundin BS: Helicobacter pylori-specific CD4 T cells home to and accumulate in the; human helicobacter-infected gastric mucosa. Infect Immun 73:5612-5619, 2005

Qadri F, Ahmed T, Ahmed F, Begum YA, Sack DA and Svennerholm A-M: Reduced doses of oral killed enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli plus cholera toxin B subunit vaccine is safe and immunogenic in Bangladeshi children 6 months to 12 years of age: dosing studies in different age groups. Vaccine, October, 2005.


Gastrointestinal infections, water and health

Group leader: Ann-Mari Svennerholm (Professor, M.D., Ph.D.), Ingrid Bölin (Ph.D.), Anders Janzon (Ph.D. student), Åsa Lothigius (Ph.D. student), Åsa Sjöling (Ph.D.), Gudrun Wiklund (Research engineer/BMA)

The purpose of this project is to identify environmental and ecological factors that may facilitate spread of waterborne gastrointestinal infections, i.e. enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC), Vibrio cholerae and Helicobacter pylori, both in developing and developed countries. To achieve this goal we will develop suitable methods for identification of the causative bacterial pathogens in water samples and identify different environmental conditions that may promote/counteract contamination of different water sources with these pathogens as well as their transmission and capacity to induce severe diseases both in populations in industrialized and in developing countries.

This project is a multidisciplinary project and it is part of an international network for “Research and education in infectious diseases, water and health¿ with professor Rita Colwell, University of Maryland, USA, Dr F. Qadri, International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research (ICDDR, B), Dhaka, Bangladesh and Dr. Bodil Hernroth, Kristineberg Marine Research Station, the Swedish Royal Academy of Science, and others.

Important publications:
Qadri, F., Svennerholm, A.-M., Faruque, A. S. G., Sack, R. B. 2005. Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) in developing countries: epidemiology, microbiology, clinical features, treatment and prevention. Clin Microbiol Rev. 18:465.

Begum, Y. A., Talukder, K. A., Nair, G. B., Qadri, F., Sack, R. B., Svennerholm, A.-M. 2005. Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli isolated from surface water in urban and rural areas of Bangladesh. J Clin Microbiol. 43: 3582.

Sidansvarig: Dan Baeckström|Sidan uppdaterades: 2014-05-07

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