How bacteria build homes inside healthy cells

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Purdue associate professor of biological sciences Zhao-Qing Luo, at right, and graduate student Yunhao Tan look at the growth of Legionella pneumophila bacteria in a petri dish.

Bacteria are able to build camouflaged homes for themselves inside healthy cells — and cause disease — by manipulating a natural cellular process.

Purdue University biologists led a team that revealed how a pair of proteins from the bacteria Legionella pneumophila, which causes Legionnaires disease, alters a host protein in order to divert raw materials within the cell for use in building and disguising a large structure that houses the bacteria as it replicates…

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