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Researchers explore natural solution to rid household plumbing of dangerous pathogens

Just a quick post to point out an article on phys.org talking about Amy Pruden’s fascinating work on probiotics for plumbing.   Read her microBEnet post about the work here and a related post by Kyle Bibby here.

From the phys.org article:

“We believe this microbiome can be harnessed to control opportunistic pathogens,” Pruden said.

For example, benign microbes could out-compete the pathogens for nutrients, space, and other needs, such as the aid of amoeba as hosts. Limiting the number of amoeba with an amoebal virus or bacterial virus is also a strategy, said Falkinham.

In addition, some microbes secrete substances that prevent pathogens from attaching to a surface, which prevents harmful biofilm formation. An alternative approach is chemical synthesis and screens of molecule-mimicking natural inhibitors to control biofilm formation.

ProbioticsPlumbing

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David Coil

David Coil is a Project Scientist in the lab of Jonathan Eisen at UC Davis. David works at the intersection between research, education, and outreach in the areas of the microbiology of the built environment, microbial ecology, and bacterial genomics. Twitter

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