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Experimental infection of the pig with Mycobacterium ulcerans : a novel model for studying the pathogenesis of Buruli ulcer disease

Bolz, Miriam and Ruggli, Nicolas and Ruf, Marie-Thérèse and Ricklin, Meret E. and Zimmer, Gert and Pluschke, Gerd. (2014) Experimental infection of the pig with Mycobacterium ulcerans : a novel model for studying the pathogenesis of Buruli ulcer disease. PLoS neglected tropical diseases, Vol. 8, H. 7 , e2968.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A6288918

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Abstract

Buruli ulcer (BU) is a slowly progressing, necrotising disease of the skin caused by infection with Mycobacterium ulcerans. Non-ulcerative manifestations are nodules, plaques and oedema, which may progress to ulceration of large parts of the skin. Histopathologically, BU is characterized by coagulative necrosis, fat cell ghosts, epidermal hyperplasia, clusters of extracellular acid fast bacilli (AFB) in the subcutaneous tissue and lack of major inflammatory infiltration. The mode of transmission of BU is not clear and there is only limited information on the early pathogenesis of the disease available.; For evaluating the potential of the pig as experimental infection model for BU, we infected pigs subcutaneously with different doses of M. ulcerans. The infected skin sites were excised 2.5 or 6.5 weeks after infection and processed for histopathological analysis. With doses of 2×107 and 2×106 colony forming units (CFU) we observed the development of nodular lesions that subsequently progressed to ulcerative or plaque-like lesions. At lower inoculation doses signs of infection found after 2.5 weeks had spontaneously resolved at 6.5 weeks. The observed macroscopic and histopathological changes closely resembled those found in M. ulcerans disease in humans.; Our results demonstrate that the pig can be infected with M. ulcerans. Productive infection leads to the development of lesions that closely resemble human BU lesions. The pig infection model therefore has great potential for studying the early pathogenesis of BU and for the development of new therapeutic and prophylactic interventions.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Medical Parasitology and Infection Biology > Molecular Immunology (Pluschke)
UniBasel Contributors:Bolz, Miriam and Ruf, Marie-Thérèse and Pluschke, Gerd
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Bibsysno:Link to catalogue
Publisher:Public Library of Science
ISSN:1935-2727
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:31 Dec 2015 10:56
Deposited On:10 Oct 2014 09:19

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