Bacterial/Viral Host Interactions
Microorganisms play an important role in controlling both health and disease in the gastrointestinal tract. Helicobacter pylori has been demonstrated to be involved in the formation of gastric ulcers (shown here: H. pylori colonizing the stomach). The normal bacterial flora of the lower intestinal tract participate in preventing the colonization of the gut by pathogenic bacteria.
Inappropriate host responses to either the normal flora or pathogenic microorganisms can result in a severe inflammatory response in the gastrointestinal tract. Scientists in the DHCoE are working to better understand the complex interactions that take place between the tissues of the GI tract and the microorganisms that inhabit them.
Richard L. Guerrant, PhD
William A. Petri, Jr., PhD
Joanna B. Goldberg, PhD