Clostridioides Difficile Captures Blood Cell Cofactor to Build Defensive Shield
In a cruel twist, the bacterium Clostridioides difficile (C. diff) makes us bleed and then uses our blood to defend itself against us.
Vanderbilt University Medical Center scientists have identified a C. diff protein system that senses and captures heme (part of hemoglobin) to build a protective shield that fends off threats from our immune system and antibiotics. The findings, reported in the journal Cell Host & Microbe, reveal a unique mechanism for C. diff survival in the human gut and suggest novel strategies for weakening its defenses.
C. diff—the most common cause of healthcare-associated infections ...