June 29, 2022

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Smokers are more likely to be infected by bacteria

Smokers are more likely to be infected by bacteria

Smokers are more likely to be infected by bacteria. Smoking makes super bacteria more terrible. Recently, a study published in the journal “Scientific Reports” found that smoking makes methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strains more resistant to antibiotics.

Smokers are more likely to be infected by bacteria

MRSA is a kind of “super bacteria”, it is resistant to a variety of antibiotics, can cause skin infections, sepsis and pneumonia. Genetic mutations are the root cause of Staphylococcus aureus becoming super bacteria. MRSA resistance mainly has two forms: inherent resistance mediated by chromosomes and acquired resistance mediated by plasmids.

Previous studies have shown that smokers are more susceptible to bacterial infections, but the specific reasons are not clear. Some scholars attribute this to the destructive effects of smoke on our immune system, but some scholars believe that this is probably related to the DNA mutation of MRSA, which increases drug resistance.

Researchers from the University of Bath in the United Kingdom worked with institutions such as Imperial College London, Oxford University, and the Institute of the Autonomous University of Barcelona in Germany to expose six MRSA strains to cigarette smoke. The results showed that some of the MRSA strains had mutations in their DNA and could survive the harsh conditions caused by the intervention of therapeutic antibiotics.

Researchers believe that the impact of cigarette smoke on Staphylococcus aureus will trigger an emergency “SOS” stress response, a chain reaction of a series of ancillary gene regulatory system (AGR) malfunctions, and ultimately increase the mutation rate of bacterial DNA , Resulting in mutant strains that are better able to resist antibacterial drugs.

“Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death worldwide. Smoking contains more than 4800 compounds. We study Staphylococcus aureus because it is very common in humans and can cause a series of diseases. We want to see when we put What happens when it is exposed to smoke.” Dr. Maisem Laabei of the University of Bath pointed out in the article that the study found that the bacterial colony variants exposed to the smoke have a high degree of adhesion, invasiveness and drug resistance, and they can grow Survive over time, it is difficult to be cleared and cause chronic infection.

Researchers hope that this study can help smokers have a reason to quit. In the future, they will also study whether diesel exhaust and other sources of air pollution will affect the emergence of drug resistance of microorganisms in the human nasal cavity, because the chemicals in these gases are similar to cigarette smoke.